I’ve written about a lot of things since starting this blog, and some of those things have gotten a lot more attention than others. Some have been shared more on social media, some have started interesting discussions, and some have just gotten a lot more views than others because people are interested in the subject matter.
Here are what I consider some of the “greatest hits” of All That Catholic Jazz. Just like you’d introduce a friend to the works of Queen by starting with “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “Don’t Stop Me Now,” if you’re new to the blog, I recommend you check out these posts first.
1) Should I Ever Give Money to a Homeless Person?– Answering the question about what we should do when we encounter someone living in poverty and asking for some spare change.
2) HIMYM was uncomfortably realistic about love, marriage, and friendship, and that’s why it was legendary– Why I loved the ending of How I Met Your Mother, which highlighted some reasons why love succeeds, and reasons it fails
3) The Greatest Disease in the West– Mother Teresa said that loneliness is the greatest disease that affects western culture, but we’re trying to cure it in all the wrong places
4) Moral of the Story: You Don’t Always Have Control– I experienced the realities of mental illness while serving the homeless for a year, which made Robin Williams’ suicide hit even closer to home
5) A Group of Men Go to a Strip Club, but Not for the Reason You’d Expect– Reflecting on my experience praying at a strip club and why more young men (and women) need to pray for those who work in an industry that does so much to devalue women.
6) Anti Date-Rape Nail Polish: Victim Saving or Victim Blaming?– Why the fight to end violence against women requires us to use as many weapons as we can, even if none of them are perfect, and how “rape culture” has sprouted from a cheapening of sex throughout our society.
7) Moral of the Story: You Will Fail Without Prayer– As a missionary I learned that true, selfless charity requires an active and dedicated prayer life.
8) Be Not Afraid: Accepting St. John Paul the Great’s Challenge– Reflecting on Pope St. John Paul’s theme of courage during the week of his canonization.
9) Moral of the Story: We Need Community– Exploring the universal longing for community and relationships, and how I experienced that longing in my conversations with my friends on the streets of Denver
10) Should We Really Be “All About That Bass?”– The hit song “All About that Bass” has some good ideas, but still falls very short in recognizing the inherent dignity of all women.
1) Dating, Dancing, and Why We Need Gender Roles More Than We Think– An analysis of the similarities between the social dancing world and the dating world, and why some “traditional” gender roles may have served a valuable purpose
2) The Pilgrimage I Needed– My thoughts following a powerful experience at World Youth Day 2013 in Rio de Janeiro and seeing Pope Francis while on Copacabana Beach with 3.5 million other young people
3) Is it that important to have the same religion?– How important is having the same faith when you are dating another person, and how can you tell when conflicting beliefs will cause problems
4) The only ones out-breeding the Muslims– Discussing why Catholics seem to love having larger families, Natural Family Planning, and the problems with the overpopulation myth
5) You’re worth more than your paycheck– Why I believe there are more important things to life than how much money you make, and why a profitable career isn’t inherently more valuable than one that pays less
6) The Exclusivity of the Abortion Debate– The Pro-Life movement needs to welcome those beyond our religious denominations and focus on reaching out to secular Pro-Lifers who can help us emphasize the human rights violations that occur during the act of abortion
7) Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespassed against us– Why forgiveness is critical to the Christian life and to experiencing true joy, and how forgiving yourself can often be the hardest thing a person can do (and how I can use Star Wars to help make good points)
8) Why I’m Proud to be Anti-Choice– The reasons why everyone is “anti-choice” about some things, and why it’s a good thing to be “anti-choice” when it involves defending the rights of others
9) Why the fight for Gay Marriage has (almost) nothing to do with homosexuality– What I perceive to be the real dilemma behind the debate about gay “marriage”- a debate between two different ideas of what the word “marriage” even means, and what responsibilities it entails
10) Discerning Mission: Christ doesn’t call us to live a comfortable life– The story of how I discerned that God was calling me to spend a year working as a missionary among the poorest and most neglected members of our society