Brian Harper is a graduate student and public service fellow in Fordham University's International Political Economy and Development program. He previously worked in communications with the Midwest Jesuits and served as a Jesuit Volunteer in Peru. His writing has been featured in America, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Counterpunch, Mic, and various other publications. You can read his work and listen to his music at

He writes for NCR's Young Voices blog.

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Rhythms and routines in ordinary time

Young Voices: In Catholic Mass, the songs and readings may shift each day, but the general structure has been pretty consistent. This all struck me as pretty boring when I was growing up. Other denominations' services felt new and dynamic, like each week was a new episode of a great TV show. 


The trouble with attacks on political correctness

Young Voices: The trouble with attacks on political correctness is not that they defend impropriety, though they usually do; it is that they justify a worldview that simply is not accurate.


The Filipino guide to staying sane

Young Voices: Like every nation, the Philippines has its problems. Filipinos are not oblivious to these realities. At the same time, their positivity has something to teach Americans.


Make America grateful again

Young Voices: I had the great fortune to sit in the audience as Vice President Joe Biden affirmed his great fortune to Stephen Colbert on a recent taping of "The Late Show." What was most surprising was that Biden's claims of good luck referred not to his public career but to his private life.