Friday, July 25, 2014

USCCB Declares NSA Awareness Week A "Smashing Success"

Original picture source.
Washington, DC: The United States Council of Bishops' staff are very pleased with the response to their annual NSA Awareness Week, July 20-27.

"This year was different, the week needed new leadership," admitted a USCCB insider who wished to remain nameless.  "So we gave it to a young volunteer committee--they walked in off the street, actually--and they really took it in a new, fresh direction.  Our people in the pew need more than a 'here is the next round of Creighton model classes.'  So our social media campaign was more 'in your face'--and people we never thought were interested in contraception issues were linking to us, sharing,'s been just great."

Some of the most popular tweets were:

  • "God's beautiful plan for building families: be aware of NSA methods" 
  • "When was the last time your priest talked to your parish about NSA?  Encourage him that people want to know how to avoid artificial intelligence in your natural cycles" 
  • "You're 'snowed in'? Feeling amorous? Did you chart that? Can it be used as evidence in international court?" 
  • "It's's about's God's plan. NSA: surveillance for love".

Some pastors admit being confused.  "I know it's been a few years since the sem, but I'm not up on this new evangelization technique," admitted Fr. Anthony Smith of Chicago.  "I thought this week was usually, just don't use artificial contraception.  I'm not sure when the NSA got involved, but apparently they're into everything now," he shrugged.

Liberal social media moguls, like The Daily Kos, were horrified. "We had high hopes that the Catholic Church would back us on the scourge of the NSA.  Instead, they apparently went on a blitz to support the NSA, even applying their unconstitutional techniques to marriages.  What are you going to do, ritually wire tap your wife?" a contributor raged.

The USCCB insider argued that the week's experimental blitz proved that talking about NSA was much more popular than they had been led to believe for years.  "There is hope for Humanae Vitae.  There is hope for our marriages.  There is hope for our families.  All because this culture has finally, at long last, embraced discussing NSA.  Thank you, God."


p.s. still clueless?  A play on an annual awareness week held every year in the USA.  Never heard of it?  That could be the problem.

Friday, July 18, 2014

There's the Theology of the Body...and then there's the Theodicy of the Body

I think I found the title to my sequel!

p.s. if you don't know what theodicy means, .  You're welcome!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

"The Ugliest Churches in the World"

I am an open-minded sort of religionista.  I think there is a wide subjective range of possibilities for sacred space that work well: gothic, white clapboard, stone, more.

This church, and others on the site, absolutely do not work well.  Ever, ever, ever.

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

See you at the Theology of the Body Congress July 9-11!

Theology of the Body Congress

If any of the folks reading this blog are attending the Theology of the Body Congress in Phillie this week, let's meet!  It's fun to have these email and social media conversations, but even better when we can put names to faces and meet in person.  If you are not attending, I hope to be tweeting it.  My handle is @ironiccatholic. See you there...?

FYI: a couple of people have asked if the book will be for sale at the conference.  The exhibit tables are really expensive to rent, so, no.  But I will have 5-6 of the signed copies with me, if you want to buy them. They are $25; just talk to me at the conference.  You can even use your smart phone or tablet to order it in my presence, using a credit card, through .  The wonders of technology!  (You can use that link to order it for me to send to you, as well.)

The book is also for sale as an ebook at IBooks, for $15.99.

It's also at Lectio Publishing, and other online retailers (like the one named after a very, very large river), for the regular retail price.  If you are a professor, see Lectio's site for their exam copy policy.

Hope to hear some great speakers and have phenomenal conversations in Phillie!

Saturday, July 05, 2014

Daily Mass Attendee Prays For "A Boring Intention"

Urbana, IL: Dorothy Greenland, a long time parishioner of St Margaret of Scotland Church, has called a small riot by her prayers.

She's not speaking in tongues.  She's not praying for heresy.  She's asking the church to pray for "a boring intention."

"Well, my mother taught me that not everything we want is all that special," argued Greenland after a daily mass.  "For years I have asked the daily mass crowd to pray for a special intention, and it never felt right.  I know the intention, and it's real, but it's boring.  That's the honest truth.  So I decided to be honest and all this happened," she finished with a shrug.

"All this" was a pastoral council meeting convened to determine whether Greenland was being snippy, clever, demented, or suffered from self-esteem issues.  "I got lots of questions," Greenland said.  "No one was ever interested in my special intention, but they sure seem interested in my boring one."

Carol Rauchen, the chair of the pastoral council, said she still didn't understand why she just wouldn't drop the modifier.  "For an intention," Rauchen explained.  "Simple and to the point.  It's the modifier that bothers me.  My teenaged kids think church is boring, and this isn't helping me make my case that it isn't."

"Just seems abrupt," argued Greenland back.  "'For an intention.'  Please.  I'm communing with the Lord and His Church, not ordering fast food."

Fr. Stephen Stewart sagely noted that that the phrase seemed to be better changed to "for a silent intention," since the person usually wants prayers without spelling out the details.  But he said he wasn't bothered by the modifiers one way or the other.

"As long as it isn't 'for a salacious intention,'" he closed.


Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Meet budget! Sweat less! and more traditional music to boot

There is talk of an accordianitioner, but outside Polish Catholic circles, it hasn't quite caught on.

(I'm holding out for bagpipes.)

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Lo and behold! Theology of the Body Extended is an ebook!

(cross-posted at

Theology of the Body, Extended is now an ebook!  It's even in color if you get the ebook version (for a couple pieces of art and the formatting design.)  If you use ITunes, you can buy it there for $15.99.

This guy just found out the ebook was available.  Well, no, actually he saw a Cinnabon store.
For those of you who like paperbacks (that's me too), I still have a handful signed and available here, and of course you can buy it through the publisher, Lectio Publishing, or other online/on land retailers.  Of course, it is a little more expensive, but as my brother-in-law said upon first seeing it, it's a whole lot of words!

More seriously, thanks for the positive feedback, everyone.  If you would be so inclined to write a short review of the book on Amazon or Goodreads, that would help Lectio (and the visibility of the book) a great deal.  It's easy to do and makes Amazon's logarithms happy...or something like that. 

Next week I am going to be at the Summer Institute for Theology and Disability in Dallas.  If you are attending, please say hello--I'd love to meet you.

Peace these early summer days!  -- Susan, aka IC