Search
I'll Come Speak

    I write and speak on all sorts of topics: ancient Christian spirituality and the Eastern Orthodox faith, the Jesus Prayer, marriage and family, the pro-life cause, cultural issues, and more. You can contact Cynthia Damaskos of the Orthodox Speakers Bureau if you’d like to bring me to an event. This Calendar will let you know when I’m in your neighborhood.

 

Powered by Squarespace
Saturday
Feb041995

What Does Blood Tell?

 [World, February 4, 1995]

The handwritten letter was three pages long and dated "Savannah 24th May 1848." It was signed by my husband's great-great-great grandmother, Antoinette Girard.

It began dramatically. "Prompted by the desire to leave to my children some record of their ancestors, I try to write down as much as I can remember, but must request that no use whatever should be made of this paper as long as their father lives. He bound himself by a solemn promise never to reveal it."

 

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Jan211995

Noisy, Empty Gestures

[World, January 21, 1995]

All through a long afternoon I had listened to true stories: women, strangers to me, pouring out intimate tales of love and loss. True stories are sometimes less strange than fiction; their outcomes can almost seem inevitable. This day, every story ended with an abortion.

The spring evening was fair and warm. After dinner I left the hotel for a long walk, thinking about the day's conversations. Then I noticed on one building a plaque reading "Planned Parenthood."

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Jan071995

Radio Daze

[World, January 7, 1995]

Three, two, one, and I was on the air. With a crackle my phone line was patched in, and I heard a jovial voice saying, "Welcome, Frederica! So glad you could join us today!"

My host and all his audience heard: "Bark bark bark bark bark bark bark."

The mailman’s arrival at that moment had thrown Sparky into End of the World Alert mode. "I hear you have a dog," the host gamely went on. "Yes, now everybody knows," I agreed miserably.

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jan021995

Pro-Life, Pro-Choice: Can We Talk?

[Sojourners, January 1995] 

For years I scoffed at the idea of violence outside abortion clinics. Sure, plenty of violence was going on inside the clinics--over 4,000 babies killed every day. But opponents of abortion are pro-life, I kept saying. We're in this because we oppose bloodshed. Occasionally I'd wince to hear that someone who was Not Clear on the Concept had harmed an empty building, an action that was wrong, risky, and stupid. But the notion that anyone would aim a gun at an abortionist's head and pull the trigger was ludicrous.

Then somebody did it.

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Dec241994

Deconstructing the AAR

As late fall slides to winter, across the country Christians are winding up another year of living the religious life. Late fall, and across the country members of the American Academy of Religion are winding up another year of studying the religious life.

The distinction between living it and studying it may seem artificial; most Christians study scripture, as well as theology and devotional works. But the study based in faith is not like the study of religion per se. In the halls of academe, religion is just one more sociological phenomenon, to be appraised from a safe distance (after all, He may not be a tame lion). Not that all the members of the Academy are religious abstainers; there are mainliners, goddess-worshippers, Buddhists, and the odd evangelical or two. But the AAR meets in the ivory tower, not the church.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Dec211994

Killing Abortionists: A Symposium

[First Things, December 1994] 

Paul Hill's thesis has sometimes been expanded into "the big what-if," the scenario often used to challenge pacifists. What if you had to defend your own children from a criminal? Wouldn't deadly force be justified then?

Anyone finds such a prospect deeply distressing. But the very impact of this image hinders us from realizing that shooting an abortionist fails the analogy in three important ways.

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Nov261994

The Embodiment of Us

[World, November 26, 1994]

"Hey, you got stuff all over your car!" the boy called out.

He staffs the gatehouse at the retirement home where my son waits tables. The stuff I had all over my car was large white daisies with sun-yellow centers, carefully painted on by hand. Yes, it draws attention.

It's my daughter's car, I explain, but she hasn't learned to drive a stick-shift yet. While she tools around in my massive station wagon, I'm in her lumpy old sedan. When this car rolled off the assembly line ten years ago, Megan was in the first grade. It kept rolling for 114,000 miles until it crossed her path, and as soon as she caught it she scattered daisies all over its powdery dull-brown hide.

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Oct291994

Born That Way

[World, October 29, 1994] 

An interview in the September 1994 Heterodoxy introduced us to a man the homosexual mainstream (or “Gaystream”) would prefer we didn’t meet: Leland Stevenson. Stevenson is a spokesman for the North American Man-Boy Love Association, which promotes sexual encounters between adults and adolescent boys.

This organization causes the Gaystream some awkward moments. When reporter Paul Mulshine phoned a representative of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the representative, Ms Kane, stated that her organization did not support NAMBLA. Then she added, apparently automatically, “We believe that people should not be denied their civil rights because of the sexual orientation with which they are born.”

 

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Oct161994

Not Quite a Perfect Fit

[Prism, September-October, 1994]

It was November 1988, election day, and my husband was miserable. He'd been a Democrat, or further left, forever: in 1964, when his precinct went 12 to 1 for Goldwater, Gary was county chair of Teens for Johnson. He participated in teach-ins, marches, and rallies, and worked two simultaneous jobs in the old War on Poverty. We first met at a steelworkers' strike, and were married in the woods, flowers in my hair and a vegetarian spread on the reception table.

But over the years, as our commitment to the Lord Jesus Christ had grown, we had become increasingly persuaded that abortion was wrong. We had opposed so many forms of violence and injustice; eventually we had to admit that, no matter how difficult pregnancy made a woman's life, dismembering her child was a violent and unjust solution. The realization that 4500 children were dying every day forced this issue to the top of our list. No other social evil had such a bloody toll.

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Oct151994

Hotel Full of Cowboys

[World, October 15, 1994] 

We had gathered, about a hundred pro-family leaders, for a weekend conference in a Washington hotel. It was encouraging to see so many other fellow laborers assembled at one time; we filled a small dining room at lunchtime, and felt like the forward edge of a mighty army.

But as the day went on we began to be outnumbered by cowboys. Cowboys in the elevators, cowboys in the halls, cowboys sitting at tiny glass tables in the lounge. Two things about this seemed unusual:

Click to read more ...