Who writes for this blog?

About seven guys write for this blog. All of us belong to a Catholic religious order for men called The Society of Jesus (aka Jesuits). We are spread throughout the United States working in schools or studying theology.

What is the Society of Jesus?

In the midst of a rapidly changing world, 469 years ago the Society of Jesus came into being. Immediately its original 10 members threw themselves into the midst of the major issues of the day. They did so animated by the spirit of St. Ignatius Loyola, the man who had led them on this path of service to Christ and the Church. In the midst of conflict and contention, in the midst of rapid change for good and for ill, Ignatius sought God in all things and sought to lead all things to God.

Does the world really need another blog about religion?

Probably not. But we think we have an interesting perspective in following the same spirit that compelled Ignatius to God in all things. Therefore, united in hearts and minds by the service of the Body of Christ, we attempt to address art, music, politics, culture — everything that moves us — in light of our faith in God, which is to say, contemplatively.

Contemplatively?? Does that mean it’s gonna be boring?

Nah. “Contemplatively” will not always mean “seriously.” Irreverence, jocularity, and petty remembrance of insignificant grievances (because some of us are Irish), will be standard. Luckily, all this will be mixed with insights of such profundity that you will have to brush away the tears with your non-mouse hand.

What if I’m not comfortable with crying?

It’s OK.

Will you guys be mean?

Nope. In the midst of the fun, we are committed to civility in our online discourse. St. Ignatius himself is our model here: the importance of §22 from his Spiritual Exercises can never be diminished. It is all too tempting to judge the words of another, a temptation that the immediacy of the Internet only increases. We ain’t going there. Here’s what Ignatius has to say on the matter of blogging (he was really talking about something else but it works for blogging):  It should be presupposed that every good Christian ought to be more eager to put a good interpretation on a neighbor’s statement than to condemn it. Further, if one cannot interpret it favorably, one should ask how the other means it. If that meaning is wrong, one should correct the person with love; and if this is not enough, one should search out every appropriate means through which, by understanding the statement in a good way, it may be saved.

That’s a tall order. Can you guys live up to that?

Probably not. But we will try.

Are you official spokespeople for the Roman Catholic Church and The Society of Jesus?

Nope. While we do have the permission of our religious superiors to create this blog, in no way do any of us, individually or collectively, speak for the Society of Jesus or the Catholic Church. Indeed, we submit all we do here to the loving gaze of both.

Is there a David Foster Wallace quotation that expresses what you’re thinking right now?

Funny you should ask. In fact, there is. It goes like this: But if you really learn how to pay attention, then you will know there are other options. It will actually be within your power to experience a crowded, hot, slow, consumer-hell type situation as not only meaningful, but sacred, on fire with the same force that made the stars: love, fellowship, the mystical oneness of all things deep down. (David Foster Wallace, Kenyon College Commencement Address, May 21, 2005)

Who can write comments about your posts?

Anyone. However we ask a few simple things. We would prefer you not remain “Anonymous,” and we would prefer that you use your real name. It’s all with an eye towards increasing conditions for the possibility of  civility.

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3 Responses to FAQ

  1. Agustin Maes says:

    To whoever posted the link to the Atlantic article by Tim O’Brien: many thanks. A really good piece.

  2. Paul Epperlein says:

    most worthy of serious, prayerful consideration

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