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RJ Carr
By, CC BY 4.0,

On the morning of June 8, 1978, rain threatened to fall upon Southern New England. Nevertheless, a celebrity, a hero, came to town to speak to the graduating class of Harvard University — Alexandr Solzhenitsyn.

Soon this exile from behind the enemies lines of the Cold War would share his wisdom for all to hear. He came to our shores after suffering the pain of the GULAGs and the persecution as a dissident to what future president Reagan would call the Evil Empire. Now, he was living in exile in the esteemed state of Vermont in Northwest New England. …

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I am part of the Medium Partner Program but that does not mean I write for the money. In fact, because of the nature of my niche, I offer some of my most popular pieces for free.

I am sure you’ve read the many articles from writers boasting Medium makes them lots of money. You know the ones:

“I was on Medium a full ten minutes before I made my first million. It was one article going viral that led me to realize I am a good writer: How to Crack an Egg and Boil Water in One Day.


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Attorneys representing several petitioners including the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and the respondents including the City of Philadelphia recently argued their respective opposing positions in front of the US Supreme Court in Sharonell Fulton, et al. v City of Philadelphia, et. al. It is exactly the type of case Chief Justice John Roberts foresaw in the wake of the Obergefell decision legalizing same-sex marriage.

At issue is whether Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia can continue as a vendor for foster care placement for the city of Philadelphia. This charity-based arm of the Archdiocese places children in foster care…

Photo by Stephen Leonardi on Unsplash

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops will debate, in their semi-annual meeting next month, whether or not President Joseph Biden can continue to receive the Eucharist in a Catholic Mass.

San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone appears to take the first step on the issue in his own Archdiocese.

On May 1st, which in the Catholic Church is the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker, the archbishop released the statement Before I Formed You in the Womb I Knew You. …

Gary Bridgman, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

If you seek a powerful piece of micro-fiction, you might need look no farther than the source of the question: “What was thrown off the Tallahatchie bridge?” You might discover a deep parable there too.

The inquiry comes from the 1967 b-side record by Bobbie Gentry Ode To Billy Joe. The cross-platform country ballad she wrote and performed became a hit during those turbulent late 1960s. Still, almost fifty-five years later, people still ask that question. The answer is generally, you miss the point if you focus on seeking a solution to the unsolved mystery.

The real world envelopes the song

The Vietnam Era raged on…

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You’ve heard the saying: “I may be old but I’ve heard all the great bands!” that truth is happening on YouTube. A new genre is uniting several generations over music and comedy videos on the platform.

Called reaction videos, you watch commentators as they view music or comedy performances which you can also see, then they react to them. You watch their facial expressions as they listen and discover artists their generations never heard or even heard of before. They then explain their impressions and understanding of each tune or routine and give their insight into what they hear for…

Photo by Carolina Pimenta on Unsplash

There is an ancient principle in Catholic spirituality in which every concept of God eventually falls away and you are left in the dark for a time until you rediscover Him again. Many writings of the saints and mystics will tell you to expect this the more you draw close to God. Sometimes that dark period can last for years as it did with Saint Mother Teresa.

You can find a whole host of divine images and descriptions in any kind of popular media. …

I am sure there are different forms of altitude sickness. This is my particular experience with it.

Sicuani, Peru is a beautiful place. A busy agricultural area high in the Andes mountains. I was supposed to be near there for five years. Kind of like the last scene from 9 to 5, I was asked by my boss to move to Peru and do great work there.

I arrived for a ten-day “vacation” in April (2018) to see how it would go. …

Photo by Kaitlyn Baker on Unsplash

What is the most dangerous thing you can do to undermine your desire to write? Listen to naysayers saying you have no talent. Especially, those few here on Medium who criticize your writing style.

May I suggest writing the way you feel most comfortable? Rules that you must follow are what editors require before they consider reading your submissions for publication. If you publish your own material outside of publications here on Medium or elsewhere, write as you see fit. I don’t mean to work to improve your writing but do not try to be perfect before you publish your…

Photo: Curiosity’s Selfie via

I was listening to the radio the other day. The Christian host played an excerpt from an interview he did with a world-famous British Atheist. The man asked host if he really believed that Jesus turned water into wine. He said: “Yes” and the atheist dismissed him with “You are kidding me.” Or words to that effect.

I immediately thought of the atheist’s dismissal as being a small way of thinking. He is viciously anti-Christian so it does not surprise me, but it is really sad to have thinking like this.

One of the greatest problems for us as humans…

RJ Carr

writer, broadcaster, priest, veteran

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