Will the Catholic Church Lighten Up Under Pope Francis?

by Bill Brenner March 14, 2013 Faith

After the world got its first gander at Pope Francis yesterday, the inevitable “Lighten up, Francis” jokes started flying. But there’s more than a cheap joke in all this. The question of whether the Church will lighten up under Pope Francis is a legitimate one. Mood music: [spotify:track:7GCBUUTGCGYKwx0kpVay60] I’m a devout Catholic, which is to say I follow Jesus and believe he’s my savior. But I’ve often turned my nose up at the Vatican¬†bureaucracy and…  [Read More]

A Few Thoughts About Pope Benedict XVI

by Bill Brenner February 12, 2013 Faith

I’ve had 24 hours to absorb the news that¬†Pope Benedict XVI is stepping down at the end of the month. I think he’s doing the right thing and showing some true fortitude. But I’m also glad because there’s an opportunity for the Catholic Church to right some wrongs. Mood music: [spotify:track:2C9RcoXlyJEV0IJUNWWCVM] The Church has stubbornly held on to backward beliefs about the role of women, the status of a person’s Catholicism after a divorce, and…  [Read More]

How Christianity Hijacked Pagan Holidays

by Bill Brenner December 5, 2012 Faith

Christian extremists like to blather on about a war on Christmas. Given that my post “Take Your ‘War On Christmas’ Talk And Shove It” has been getting a lot of traction on Facebook this week, I think it’s time for a history lesson. Mood music: [spotify:track:0P2vAvvWni2tNXOdbH3JFk] We hear a lot about how Christmas is a Christian holiday, which it is, but important facts are being forgotten. One is that Jesus wasn’t actually born on Dec….  [Read More]

My Name Is Bill, and I’m with the Religious Left

by Bill Brenner November 19, 2012 Faith

I’ve been on a spiritual high for the last several years. I became a Catholic in 2006 and since then have tried to live my faith to the fullest. I’ve been on three Catholic retreats, one as a team leader, and have spoken up about my beliefs regularly in this blog. I’ve worked hard to become a more peaceful person instead of the Bill who would flip people off on the highway and throw rocks…  [Read More]

Most Days Are Like New England Weather

by Bill Brenner September 4, 2012 Gratitude

Last Friday started in a brutal fashion. I woke up more than an hour late after a lousy night’s sleep. As a result, I fell way behind with work. To top it all off, the kids had the day off and were making all kinds of noise. Mood music: [spotify:track:5H19HygtEjZJLdGtGdpSPR] For the first two hours of the day, my mood was bleak. My head pounded, I felt disoriented and I was convinced my day was…  [Read More]

Nine Things to Consider When Life Starts to Suck

by Bill Brenner July 19, 2012 Depression

On my worst days, when depression takes over and common sense goes out the window, I try to remember the following to put my life back into perspective. I’ve had my share of bad health, but family and friends have always helped me through. Some friends and family dealing with cancer right now know what I’m talking about. I hate the snow, cold and darkness of winter. But winter always gives way to spring and…  [Read More]

Parental Overload: No Big Deal

by Bill Brenner April 25, 2010 Children's issues

Nothing like a week of screaming kids to realize OCD aint what it used to be. Mood music for this post: “Mama Weer all Crazee Now” by The Runaways: [youtube=] A week like the one I’ve just had would have been impossible just a couple years ago. The kids were on school vacation, the same week as Sean’s 9th birthday and some very big security events in Boston. I did a lot of speeding back…  [Read More]

MomDay Monday – School Daze

by Bill Brenner April 22, 2010 Children's issues

Every school has its issues. Issues with teachers. Issues with other parents. Miscommunication. Problems with other students. Every school. There’s no getting around it. We’re all human. We all have failings. And a school is, after all, made up of us imperfect humans. But at what point does a school have so many issues it becomes dysfunctional? Is it when the faculty talks out of turn to your child about their parents’ divorce? Or perhaps…  [Read More]

We’re All Broken

by Bill Brenner April 19, 2010 Communication skills for the crazy

The author finds that sometimes his church family is too judgmental. Mood music: [spotify:track:3p7XSsT6AFs9lCkv6FtLbj] Father Mike went on another tirade against politicians in his Homily yesterday. He always makes a lot of points I agree with when it comes to politics and corruption, but this time I walked away feeling that he was judging people in a way we’re not supposed to do. His main gripe was against the idea that there are people who…  [Read More]

Cancer and The Mouth

by Bill Brenner April 16, 2010 Uncategorized

The author has some words for a kid fighting cancer. Mood music for this post: “Heart-shaped Box” by Nirvana: [youtube=] Expect a couple shorter posts today. I have a few things on my mind and don’t need many words to get out what I’m feeling. Here’s the first thing on my mind: During my teenage years, my step-sister hung out with a kid I nicknamed mouth because she had a really loud voice. As annoyed…  [Read More]