Archive for July, 2014

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Holy Renegades

ordain women

The six women gathered in Denise O’Connor’s living room on a bright Sunday morning two weeks after Easter don’t look like insurrectionists. They are middle-aged ladies dressed in casual khakis and flowery spring shirts and they come bearing gifts of fruit salad, breakfast casserole, and muffins. Despite appearances, however, they are about to participate in a revolutionary act, one that violates Roman Catholic law and centuries of Church practice: a Catholic mass celebrated by a female priest.

My CityPaper piece on Roman Catholic women priests. Though the Vatican considers them excommunicated,”we are still part of the Catholic Church,” they say.”You cannot excommunicate someone from her relationship with God.”

Bitter Ends & New Beginnings

UPDATE: Dundalk Eagle reports that Maryland-based Redwood Capital Investments is in talks to buy a big chunk of the Sparrows Point peninsula. Del John Olszewski, Jr. says that Redwood has the necessary capital to cultivate a “clean property and pro-growth […]


Open Walls Baltimore



What’s in a name? Baltimore is becoming a street art mecca but there’s still a uneasy relationship between graffiti artists and their street artist peers. What is the relationship between graffiti and street art and why does the latter get more respect?


Growing Up Jewish in A Gentile Neighborhood


Last year The Jewish Museum of Maryland published my two-part piece “Growing Up Jewish in a Gentile Neighborhood” on their website. Talking to folks that had grown up in predominantly Catholic working-class neighborhoods in the 1930s to 1960s when their parents owned corner stores was really fascinating. Plus, I got to talk to one of my childhood heroes, Rhea Feikin. Of her Hampden childhood, Ms. Feiken said: “It was not unpleasant. I did feel like an outsider but I learned how to be a good outsider, how to get along and fit in without losing my own identity.” (more…)

The Marc Steiner Show

sparrowspoint Soon after ROOTS OF STEEL was published a group of retired steelworkers and I talked with Marc about the history and legacy of Sparrows Point.

NEJM Review: The Riddle of Gender

How do nature and nurture interact to produce a persistent awareness of one’s identity as male or as female — that is, one’s “gender identity,” as this term is now used in the official diagnostic manual of the American Psychiatric Association? How does understanding the psychology of transgendered people — those who fall between the polarities of being male and being female — illuminate gender psychology? Organized as verbatim interviews with commentary, The Riddle of Gender grapples with these questions in a stimulating way.

WYPR Maryland Morning with Sheila Kast