Author: John Cavanaugh-O'Keefe


Exile and exultation

The Pope’s new exhortation, Gaudete et Exsultate – or, in English, “Rejoice and Be Glad” – is a delight from beginning to end. The name recalls the pastoral document from Vatican II, Gaudium et Spes – in English, “Joy and Hope,” although the formal English name of the document is a little stuffy, “The Church in the Modern World.” Francis’s new outcry is a wellspring of insight and challenge and joyful confidence. Even its name...


Trust on a Cliff

In 1972, I spent 40 days in a hermitage a mile from Christ in the Desert Monastery, in Abiquiu, NM. (“Hermitage”? Please translate into standard modern English.) That is, I went camping with a friend for a couple of weeks, then alone for a few weeks more. I had no agenda for the summer, just an idea that felt like an invitation. Jesus says we should call his Father, the creator of the universe, Our...