In the 1990s, the phrase “if it bleeds, it leads” became a staple at some television stations around the country. Newscasts would focus almost entirely on crime, violence and salacious stories to attract viewers. That bygone era came to mind when I read Pope Francis’ Jan. 24 message for World Communications Day, which focused on storytelling. It pointedly made me think of how different storytelling, and journalism, could be from that late 20th-century approach.
February is a tough month for our family, bringing the anniversaries of our twins’ deaths. Each year I find myself answering hard questions from our sons about their sisters. Why did they die? Where are they now? Will I get to see them again?
On the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Jan. 22, Catholics and Christians around this nation said a prayer for the unborn. Each year, thousands flood to Capitol Hill for the March for Life, where many believers make a public pledge against abortions. I reflect on this infamous law and all the victims it has taken, and ask myself as a new mother, what is the value of life?
Leading up to the passage of New York’s 2019 abortion expansion legislation, lawmakers and advocates dismissed Catholic concerns as hysterical fear-mongering, devoid of facts. The new law merely updated New York’s outdated statute, they insisted. It simply codified the protections of Roe vs. Wade at the state level.
A recent Associated Press story accused diocesan review boards around the country of failing in their mission to investigate claims of clergy sexual abuse.
As we trudge into 2020, a year that promises to be just as rancorous politically as the year we recently ended, I find myself thinking about forgiveness.
“Isn’t it sad,” someone once told me, “that on New Year’s Eve, you’re counting down to the end of your birthday?” I was born on the last day of the year, so countdowns to the start of the new year always meant the end of my birthday. That never bothered me; the celebration always continued. The music still played. The party wasn’t over.
Two days before Christmas in 1973, it was cold and beginning to snow when I set out from Great Lakes, Ill., at 6 a.m. to get home to my boys on Long Island. I was in the U.S. Navy then.
As I carefully unwrapped and hung the ornaments on the tree this year, I was struck by how many of them were made by hand, crafted expressly for me and my family. How had I never noticed this before?
My wife and I are expecting our fifth child in February. It’s been six years since we had a newborn in the house, so there are some things we need to relearn about life with a baby. Most pressing perhaps is the role that technology will play in our family life when the new baby arrives.