The Nostalgia Effect

This past weekend, I led a group of about fifteen new men to St. Charles on a walking tour of historic Philadelphia. We stopped at some of the major points of religious and secular history: Old Saint Joseph’s Church, at one time the only place in the entire British Empire where Mass could be celebrated […]

Digital Mindset

Another academic year has begun at colleges and universities, and seminaries, too.  With it comes the annual publication, thanks to Beloit College, of the “mindset list” for the incoming freshmen. First created in 1998, the annual list reveals those things that members of the Class of 2020 (born in 1998) have always known and/or never […]

A Letter to the New Men

Dear New Men, What many of my classmates and I look forward to the most this year is getting to know all of you. So as you begin this year please come and talk to any of the old men, faculty, or staff if you have any questions. We are all very excited to have […]


It’s not just a library thing anymore.  “Shushing” is going digital. Beginning next week, NPR joins the ranks of other major digital news outlets in no longer permitting online comments about their stories.  According to the managing editor’s announcement, the reason for discontinuing the practice is “to prioritize and strengthen other ways of building community […]

Hidden in Plain Sight

This is what I have come to understand during this election cycle: neither the pretentious “openness” of the Democratic Party nor the “law and order” rhetoric of the Republican Party can serve as a comfortable place for Catholics. For a Catholic voter who seeks to end abortion and the death penalty, who wishes to preserve […]

Eat, Pray, Love revisited

The 2006 memoir by Elizabeth Gilbert, which remained on the New York Times best seller list for more than three-and-a-half years is hardly a devotional classic, even with Oprah’s endorsement.  It garnered additional popularity in movie form, starring Julia Roberts.  But the tale and its telling were also beset with stinging criticism. Still, the title […]

Why Shouldn’t You?

I spent the last two months living in Arequipa, Peru.  I had never even heard of Arequipa before, and I certainly had no idea where to find it on a map.  The city is a tranquil one with views as beautiful as the people that inhabit it.  Unfortunately for me, no number of snowcapped volcanoes […]