Annalise Deal

 

 

Executive Editor & Culture Editor

 

Tue

26

Sep

2017

Six Podcasts for People of Faith

by Annalise Deal

 

1) Pray-as-you-go

This daily podcast from the British Jesuits offers guided prayer through one of the readings each day. Each episode begins with some kind of music--often a chant, hymn, or psalm. The second part of the podcast offers an opportunity to pray and meditate on the reading through a series of repetitions and questions, that seem to loosely base themselves on the Lectio Divina model. At around ten minutes long, the podcast is loosely designed to be listened to on a commute. It’s perfect for listening to while eating breakfast, walking to class, or as a quick moment of mindfulness in the midst of a busy day. 

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Tue

26

Sep

2017

Walking the Talk

by Annalise Deal

 

This past summer, I had the pleasure of working at GLIDE, a United Methodist Church and non-profit foundation in the Tenderloin neighborhood of San Francisco. Though GLIDE is in part a church, more so it is a beloved community of people who seek to be radically inclusive and love unconditionally. Not everyone at GLIDE believes in God, but as a body, they live out the teachings of Jesus in a uniquely action-oriented way. Built into their core values is the notion that as people committed to justice and inclusion, we all must “walk the talk.” This idea of walking the talk—of not just holding beliefs and spiritual ideals but actually acting on them—challenged me to re-examine the way I live as a Christian. 

 

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Tue

25

Apr

2017

On the Challenge to Love our Enemies

 

by Annalise Deal

 

I have long suspected that most Christians who say they want to love their enemies really only want to love some of their enemies. For most Christians, I think, there is a line where loving your enemy stops feeling like a command worth listening to. For students at BC, I think that line is at loving Donald Trump, or loving members of ISIS. I understand that those are two extremely different examples that don’t belong in the same group, but just for the sake of relating to a broader political, spectrum I will talk about both.

 

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Tue

25

Apr

2017

The Theology of Chance the Rapper

by Annalise Deal

 

Like many of my fellow millennials, in the last several months I’ve become obsessed with Chance the Rappers newest album, Coloring Book. I’m not typically much of a rap person, but I am a Theology major, so a friend of mine recommended the album because he thought I would be interested in the lyrical themes of the album. He was absolutely right. I have been fascinated by the way that Chance combines more typical rap themes (“Drinking All Night”) with his deep Christian faith. Chance has discussed his faith extensively in interviews, and was very public about it at the 2017 Grammys as well, where performed segments of “How Great” and “All We Got” complete with a gospel choir, and began his acceptance speech for Best New Artist with this simple invocation “Glory be to God.”

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Wed

29

Mar

2017

Euthanasia Debate

This Catholicism 101 special feature is part one of a debate between the editorial staff of The Torch.

To see the rebuttals from each side, please click here.

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Wed

29

Mar

2017

Overwhelmed by God

 

 

by Annalise Deal

 

 

Recently I had the opportunity to go on a Kairos retreat, which was both wonderful and overwhelming. My leader that weekend helped me to connect the feeling of being overwhelmed in the Connors Center, with a similar overwhelming feeling I had three months ago.

 

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Wed

22

Feb

2017

What is Faith?

 

 

by Annalise Deal

 

 

Earlier this month Father Greg Boyle, S.J., founder of Homeboy Industries and author of Tattoos on the Heart, spoke at BC. Of all of the wise things he said, it was one of his responses during the Q&A that hit me the hardest. Someone asked him what role faith plays in the recovery and integration of gang members at Homeboy, and he responded first with another question: “what is faith?”

 

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Wed

22

Feb

2017

Administration and Students Respond to Muslim Ban

 

by Annalise Deal

 

On January 27, President Trump issued an executive order indefinitely banning refugees from Syria, and placing a 90-day suspension on immigrants entering the country from seven other predominantly Muslim nations. Two days later, Boston College President Fr. William Leahy and other top university officials joined the ranks of higher education administrators who spoke out against the ban. In an email sent out to the entire Boston College community, the administrators clearly stated their opposition:

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Tue

15

Nov

2016

On Fear

 

 

by Annalise Deal

 

Last spring on the Arrupe post-trip retreat, we received letters that we had written to ourselves 7 months before, on the fall pre-trip retreat. In the fall, one of the things I had written in my letter was a list of all of my greatest fears at the time. In the spring, when I read that letter, every single one of the things I had feared had happened. And yet, when I read the letter back, I felt this overwhelming peace. I remember sitting outside on a snowy ledge at the Connors Family Retreat center, thinking about fear, and feeling overwhelmed by the goodness of God, in the realization that he is so much bigger than my fears. 

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Tue

25

Oct

2016

Colombian Voters Reject Peace Deal with Rebel Group

by Annalise Deal

 

Five days after his landmark peace treaty with the Colombian guerilla group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia or FARC, was rejected by popular vote, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos won the Nobel Peace Prize.

 

On October 2, Colombians voted against a peace treaty that would have ended the 50-year civil war between the Colombian government and the Marxist rebel group. Since the war began in 1964, 250,000 Colombians have been killed and thousands have been displaced in the conflict.

 

Santos and FARC leader Timoleon Jimenez signed the deal after almost four years of negotiations, only to have the deal rejected by Colombian voters a week later by a margin of 50.2 to 49.8 percent. According to the BBC, that’s a difference of less than 63,000 votes out of 13 million.

 

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Tue

25

Oct

2016

Learning to Trust God in a Country Where Nothing Happens on Time

 

 

by Annalise Deal

 

I’m not much of a planner, but living in South America has certainly made me realize how much of my life has been dependent on the aggressive planning and thorough organization we are so accustomed to in the United States. Here, the world operates on a different system of time altogether, what sociologists call polychronic time. In Chile, time is not seen as strict and single track. This is a world where class registration happens the night before classes begin, with all the students in one crazy room at the same time, and the administrators don’t even bat an eye.

 

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Tue

27

Sep

2016

Liberation Theology Written in the Stars

by Annalise Deal

 

 

As a theology major, I came to Chile knowing I wanted to study liberation theology, but living in a community where liberation theology permeates all things has made me realize it is much more than something you study. Liberation theology is a lens for looking at the world; it is the fundamental belief that Jesus’ words “Blessed are the poor” (Luke 6:20) are uncompromisingly true. For the past three months I have been studying at the Universidad Alberto Hurtado (UAH) in Santiago, Chile, which is named for Chile’s Jesuit Saint, Alberto Hurtado. Padre Hurtado was a champion of the poor, and fought both legal and social battles to achieve greater justice for them. He firmly believed that there is no such thing as caridad sin justicia, love without justice, and UAH is firmly rooted in this belief. Adapting to this sometimes extreme academic adherence to liberation theology has had a profound and sometimes challenging effect on my personal faith. I have struggled to decide how seriously we must take the claims of Gustavo Gutierrez and others that God offers a preferential option for the poor. Is it just one reading of Scripture, which is important but not central? Or is this the Gospel, that Jesus came to set captives free, bring sight to the blind, and rescue those who had suffered in this world?

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Tue

26

Apr

2016

CARE Week Invites Reflection, Change

by Annalise Deal

 

 

From April 18-22 the BC Women’s Center put on another successful CARE Week—a week of programming focused around the problem of sexual violence, designed to educate, honor victims, and incite change in our community. This year’s events included a special focus on intersectionality between sexual violence and other issues of oppression. Specifically, the week included events that highlighted the ways race and sexual orientation relate to sexual violence. However, the main event of the week was Take Back the Night, an event hosted on many campuses across the country.

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Wed

30

Mar

2016

Opinion: Spotlight shines light on dark past, paves way for bright future

by Annalise Deal

 

 

After receiving six Oscar nominations and not winning the first five, many were surprised that Spotlight took home the award for Best Picture. The film follows the team of Boston Globe reporters who were the first to uncover the sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Archdiocese of Boston. Despite many Bostonians’ anger over the portrayal of various people in the film, I believe that this story was an important one to tell, and in the long run will actually do more good than harm for the Church.

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Tue

29

Mar

2016

Arrupe Groups Bring Stories, Challenges to FAST Week

by Annalise Deal

 

 

Boston College students from various service and faith groups around campus came organized FAST week (Faith, Action, Solidarity Together) on March 15 thorough March 21. A sustainability event and challenge hosted by the Puebla trip and a traditional Central American dinner and storytelling hosted by the Nicaragua trip were included among the many events.

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Tue

23

Feb

2016

Justice Scalia Leaves Legacy of Constitutional Age, Deep Faith

by Annalise Deal

 

Justice Antonin Scalia passed away suddenly on February 13, leaving behind a legacy of intellectual conservatism, and great zeal admired by liberal and conservative peers alike. Scalia was found dead in his room at the luxurious Cibolo Creek Ranch in South Texas, where he had been on a hunting trip with friends. Local authorities pronounced him dead of “natural causes,” as he had a host of chronic conditions known to his doctors in Washington. No autopsy was performed, per request of the Scalia family.

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Tue

23

Feb

2016

In Defense of #BachelorNation

by Annalise Deal

 

 

Shameless confession: I am obsessed with The Bachelor. In the past  seven years since the good ole’ days of Jillian Harris and Jake Pavelka, I’ve watched countless relationships form in the admittedly absurd conditions of the show, and then 90% of them breakup within a year of their season ending. I will admit it is an absurd premise that can hardly be considered reality television: a single man or woman dating 25 people in hopes of finding a spouse. There is a lot of alcohol, a lot of helicopters, and a lot of making out. I won’t try to defend the show on moral grounds (although I do believe there are always a few truly good people in the contestant pool) but the reason I keep coming back to watch is the same I think as most fans: The Bachelor does have a strange way of bringing people together. In fact our collective fandom is so strong that we even have a hashtag: the beloved #BachelorNation.

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Tue

23

Feb

2016

Justice Scalia Leaves Legacy of Constitutional Age, Deep Faith

by Annalise Deal

 

 

Justice Antonin Scalia passed away suddenly on February 13, leaving behind a legacy of intellectual conservatism, and great zeal admired by liberal and conservative peers alike. Scalia was found dead in his room at the luxurious Cibolo Creek Ranch in South Texas, where he had been on a hunting trip with friends. Local authorities pronounced him dead of “natural causes,” as he had a host of chronic conditions known to his doctors in Washington. No autopsy was performed, per request of the Scalia family.

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Tue

26

Jan

2016

The Value of Work and Community in The Martian

by Annalise Deal

 

 

Matt Damon’s most recent performance in The Martian is markedly different from other space exploration films, while still pretty unrealistic and dramatic, it is hilarious and surprisingly philosophical. One major reason for this, I think, is that for the most part the movie takes place on Mars, which is a desolate planet, but with a recognizably Earth-like landscape. When Mark Watney is left behind by his mission, the stage is set: a single person, alone on a new planet, left to cultivate the land in order to survive. I could not help but notice that the situation resembles a darker retelling of Genesis 2:15 “The LORD took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to till it and to keep it.”

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Wed

09

Dec

2015

Spotlight Captures Deep Catholic Faith of Boston Amidst Crisis

by Annalise Deal

 

Spotlight, which tells the story of the four Boston Globe reporters who first investigated the sexual abuse scandal in Boston in 2001, premiered last week, and immediately received much critical acclaim both locally and nationally. The film treats the extremely sensitive issue of the sexual abuse scandals from a unique angle: that of reporters who were eager but hesitant to realize just how large and pervasive the problem was.

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Tue

17

Nov

2015

9 Things on Which Justin Bieber and Jesus Agree

by Annalise Deal

 

 

Justin Bieber’s comeback has been unique; perhaps most famously for his inclusion of his faith as a now-guiding principle in his public appearances and songs. After falling from his sweet innocence into public shame the past couple years, this turn is somewhat surprising. Nonetheless, Justin is a self-proclaimed Christian saying, “I just wanna honestly live like Jesus.” So, without out further ado, here are some nuggets from Purpose that track his progress:

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Tue

17

Nov

2015

Religious Leaders in Canada Oppose Euthanasia

by Annalise Deal

 

In light of a Canadian Supreme Court decision earlier this year to legalize physician-assisted suicide, various religious leaders throughout the nation joined together to speak out against the practice.

 

In a statement titled “The Declaration on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide,” Catholic bishops and Protestant leaders from the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada, expressed their concerns about how ending human life, even in the case of extreme suffering and human illness, is not properly honoring its dignity. The document stated that, informed by their religious views, the various leaders “insist that any action intended to end human life is morally and ethically wrong. Together, we are determined to work to alleviate human suffering in every form but never by intentionally eliminating those who suffer.”

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Tue

27

Oct

2015

Getting by with a Little Help from Our Friends

by Annalise Deal

 

I was recently on a retreat where Christian author and international missionary Dan Bauman gave a talk, which he opened with: “one of my favorite things about God is that he lets us do life with our friends.” His point was that the only reason we got to spend that weekend on retreat with friends was because we believe that walking through life in community is what God desires for us. It doesn’t seem that radical of a concept, but it is a phenomenally important one.

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Tue

27

Oct

2015

Planned Parenthood No Longer to Accept Payments for Fetal Tissue Donations

by Annalise Deal

 

After a months-long battle over the ethical and legal implications of accepting money for fetal tissue donations, Planned Parenthood has announced that it will no longer accept reimbursement for the costs associated with donating aborted fetal organs.

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Tue

29

Sep

2015

Pope Francis Challenges, Comforts, and Encourages America

by Annalise Deal

 

After holding the office of the papacy for just two and a half years, Pope Francis completed his first visit to the US this Sunday. His visit builds on a precedent of modern-day popes visiting the United States, most recently followed by Pope Benedict’s 2008 visit.  However, due to the profound celebrity status of Pope Francis in America, his visit was much more broadly anticipated, and has left Americans with a lot more to talk about.

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