Maureen Mullarkey

Readings: A Ramble

Holidays are for reading. Everything slows on a three-day weekend. It gives us time to read those titles that call to us as we rush past them on an ordinary day. That’s the old reading technology, the kind I love to surround myself with. Then come the blog posts waiting at the bottom of a string of bookmarks in one browser or another. In some respects, the greatest urgency attaches to these. They exist in the ether and might not be there when I want them. Continue Reading
Symbols, Circumcision & The Shadow of The Cross

We are a symbol-minded species. We create symbols and live by them. They pervade our assumptions and suggest to us ways to express and apply them. In religion—as in mathematics—symbols enable us to consider and reflect. In that sense, the Nativity crèche both charms and instructs. It is a conventional way to symbolize the Incarnation. Every year while my children were young, the traditional tableau spread out under the Christmas tree. Mary and Joseph waited for midnight when the infant would be placed in a manger filled with real straw. Continue Reading
Brinton strikes a pose

The Brinton phenomenon is essential to grasping the degree of malice toward normality—or heterosexualism as queer theory puts it—that has seeped, like hydrogen flouride, into our culture at the highest levels. My schadenfreude index skyrocketed when Sam Brinton was arrested for twice stealing women’s luggage. Mainstream staff writers, though, had to do an egg walk. Careful ones reported along the lines of: “Brinton is non-binary. His pronouns are they and them. They is married to Kevin Rieck. I’m cool with that. Continue Reading
George Tyrrell On Mary, Model of Contemplative Life

George Tyrrell remains too-readily dismissed as a heretical figure in the modernist controversy. He revered Mary as the sign and summit of contemplative life. Conversely, Pope Francis is on a tear to strangle the Church’s contemplative orders. This December 8, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, seems a fitting time to honor Mary with the words of Fr. Tyrrell written eight years before his expulsion from the Jesuits. Unlike our present pope, Tyrrell lauded the transcendent grace of cloistered distance from the endless vicissitudes of the world. Continue Reading
Daumier. Two lawyers conversing

Straightaway, my apologies for yesterday’s Mail Chimp broadcast that misspelled the name of the first respondent cited on the 303 Creative case. It is Aubrey Elenis—plus nine other parties. (Respondents are adversaries of the petitioner.) In my hurry to post on the selfsame day of oral arguments before the Court, I wrote Ellis instead of Elenis. Web designer Lorie Smith owns 303 Creative. She is the sole petitioner, meaning that she alone asked the court to review her case. The number and tenor of arguments both for and against her refusal—on conscience grounds—to create a design celebrating same-sex marriage are an education in the thicket of legal argument. Continue Reading