Here’s how this week’s arts and culture column begins:

Recently I heard a homily in which the priest shared that he and his brethren are generally instructed by their superiors not to say anything that will disturb people. I almost wept. If we’re not here to be disturbed, to be challenged, to be called higher, what are we here for?

Madeline L’Engle, beloved writer of such children’s classics as A Wrinkle in Time, once observed: “We do not draw people to Christ by loudly discrediting what they believe, by telling them how wrong they are and how right we are, but by showing them a light that is so lovely that they want with all their hearts to know the source of it.”

So invite us to consider whether we are showing the world a “lovely light,” or in fact any light at all.

Disturb us!



  1. Amen. I’m often reminded of Jo Anne Worley’s old Laugh-In line: “Boring!”

    1. HEATHER KING says: Reply

      Right, Lawrence–gives people the wrong impression. The last adjective to be applied to Christ is “boring”…

  2. Mary McCaskill says: Reply

    I couldn’t agree with you more. On Good Friday, I was a visitor at The Church of the Sacred Heart in Winchester, Virginia, and heard a real homily on the crucifix (which I know you love) and how it is embraced or rejected in modern life. The parish is very conservative and it was good to hear perspectives different from my home parish and diocese. I didn’t agree or like some of what he said, but he brought me to tears when he said, “When someone feels they can’t be forgiven, I tell them to look at the crucifix and tell Him what more He can do.” I am still thinking about the homily after three weeks.
    I guess in this time of polarization, bishops and priest are afraid to rile us up, but they are losing us anyway.
    God bless you as you move.

  3. Melissa Mundy says: Reply

    My dad and I so much want to take your writing class this fall. Is there any possibility you could do a class that ends at 2:00 pm Eastern. My dad is a very special man of God. His name is Robert Rueger. It would be a treasure to get his highest thoughts on paper. Thank you for your consideration!
    Melissa Mundy

    1. HEATHER KING says: Reply

      Thanks so much, Melissa, yes, your father has emailed me himself and as I told him, I have added him to the mailing list. I probably wouldn’t adapt the time of the workshop around the schedule of a single participant but will absolutely keep your request in mind.

  4. Outstanding, and Amen!

    1. HEATHER KING says: Reply

      Thank you, Ann! My parish priest happened to see the piece and also emailed his approval…