My parents never missed Mass on Sunday and Catholic faith was the center of their lives. My father in particular, was fond of quoting the Baltimore Catechism and the rules of the church were his ultimate standard when making moral decisions. T
Many years ago Bill sat with Shirley on her family’s front porch talking late into the evening. It was their third date, and they were falling in love.
As a journalist gathered notes for a story on Msgr. Jack Egan, renowned labor priest, she could feel his eyes searching her face. Egan was 80 at the time and had already become a legend among Catholic activists as a man who spoke truth to power and fought racial discrimination and social injustice with the faith and ferocity of an Old Testament prophet.
On Public Television there is a program called Antiques Roadshow. People bring items to be appraised by professionals and experts with the hope that their vase or painting or chair might be a valuable antique.
My wife and I were young and naïve when we bought our first house. We moved into it in early spring, and soon discovered that the woman who owned the house before us had been a wonderful gardener.
Some Americans alive today can still recall the horror of Senator Joseph McCarthy’s paranoid hunt for communist infiltrators in the 1940s and ’50s, which ruined or stalled the careers of dozens of writers and entertainers who were labeled communist sympathizers.
In one of the more affluent suburbs of Chicago, in front of an expensive home, there is a front yard that looks uncared for and virtually abandoned. It has made the news because the new owner has taken out the green, unmowed lawn and let the yard revert back to its natural, prairie state.
I planted my first-ever garden. I have no idea what I’m doing. I searched online for “what plants grow like crazy.”
The elderly woman down the block from us spends as much time as she can in her garden—and it shows. She can get plants to grow that none of her neighbors can. “I spend a lot of my time preparing the soil,” she says.
Coming-of-age stories are as old as literature itself. From Odysseus to Saint Augustine, Tom Jones to Jane Eyre, Pip to Huck Finn, Holden Caufield to Scout Finch, Celie to Harry Potter. This classic genre captures the struggles, turmoil, and adventures young people experience as they mature and develop as human beings.