All posts tagged: jessicakeating

Waiting in the Mystery of Hope

What surprises me, says God, is hope. —Charles Péguy, The Portal to the Mystery of Hope Every Advent I sit around a small prayer table with four-year-olds and contemplate the great mystery of messianic hope announced by the prophet Isaiah thousands of years ago: “The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light.” We wonder aloud what it is like to wait and long for the light. We wonder how the people of Israel felt when they heard the words of the prophet. We wonder what it is like to be in the dark and to see a great, bursting light. We wonder as we wander around the words of Scripture. Every so often the small voice of a child will chime a single word: “hope.” No lengthy explanation. No theological treatise. No empty platitudes. Small children do not feel the need to give an account of themselves. Just simple, unadorned, astonishing, little, expectant, “hope.” Hope is a strange thing, gathering in time and memory—memory of the past and, oddly, remembering into the …

“Single by Default” by Jessica Keating

Last week, Jessica Keating wrote for Church Life on three insights into marriage from a single person. This week, America Magazine published another piece by Jessica Keating on singlehood. In this piece, she makes an argument that whatever a “single vocation” consists of, it is really just a concrete way of living out a vocation to holiness in the world. And even if she is among the many young women and men who have not chosen this vocation, she is still called to live with holiness in the world: Things do not always work out the way we expect. Life is precarious. We are thrown into situations over which we have no control. Married couples experience infertility. The person one falls in love with may not return that love. A religious order may ask a member to leave. We are all vulnerable. Yet we are called to holiness precisely in the circumstances of reality as it is, not as we would like it to be. But I did not discern a call to single life. In …

Three ‘Single’ Thoughts on Marriage

Thought 1: Marriage is a gift. Single people often hear the message, “If you want to get married, make yourself someone worthy of marriage.” It’s in magazines and media. It’s in the advice of friends and parents. Be interesting. Take up another hobby. Smile more. Make yourself more beautiful, skinnier, and happier. Be aggressive. Go after what you want. It’s in the competitive air we breathe. Marriage is seen as a personal achievement. It’s a life goal, a marker that you’ve made it. You’re one of the elite, the worthy ones, willing to do the hard work of earning marriage. And if you aren’t willing to work hard, you’ll be left out. It’s a dog eat dog world. Blood, sweat, and tears, and all that. This is battle, people. The Catholic world talks about being “worthy-of-marriage” a little differently, but it’s the same idea. Read more Theology of the Body. Have experiences that make you an interesting person to be around. Meet the Holy Father. Go on pilgrimage. Be holier. Don’t curse. Pray more, and …