I was not raised in a linguistically sensitive family. My parents called us “stupid” when they thought we were. They employed the full range of locally well-known, inaccurate and often hateful words and phrases for people of different skin colors and abilities.
I say this to assure you that I am not squeamish. My mother, nearing 92, can, and does, still tell me I look or am acting like a “pinheaded idiot,” and the words register in my Texas-toughened brain as a suggestion to take off that outfit, or to stop whatever it is I’m doing.
And yet I cringe every time I hear a bishop or cardinal speak of the penalty, the punishment, the threat of taking a priest found guilty of serious misconduct and “reducing him to the lay state.”
This week, we celebrate the first anniversary of the launch of our podcast, NCR in Conversation. Catch the latest episode here.
Read the full column here: Reduced to being the earth's salt and savor
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