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2022 in Review

Happy 2023!

LOOKING AHEAD

It’s been a while since you’ve gotten a newsletter from me, and it’s partly because I got married and then the holidays happened. It’s also partly because this is the last time this newsletter will look like this: I’m in the midst of working with an amazing web designer who is helping me totally revamp my online offerings. As my writing gets broader – more genres, more platforms, more projects! – I need to make sure everyone from readers to publishers can find me and reach me easily.

In the next couple of months, be on the lookout for:

  • A rebranded newsletter
  • A new sister website for theologyforeverybody.com
  • The launch of my Quarterly Zine Subscription! (That’s right, they’re finally almost really here!)
  • A surprise platform that will help us later…

With this comes a bit of an odd announcement: This will be my last formal “blog post” on theologyforeverybody.com. It’s pretty simple: The more I write, the more I think to myself “someone would probably pay me to write this.” Going forward, the articles I write, if not pitched to publications, will be housed in one of two places: On this newsletter (which I am going to use MUCH more regularly) or in a zine. 

LOOKING BACK

2022 contained the most concentrated amount of life changes my family and I have ever experienced. Thinking too hard about a year-in-review brings up lots of feelings that will take me far more than 12 months to process. All of 2022’s major events were incredibly, amazingly good. But big change is still big change, and in 2022, all the big changes happened at once. In lieu of a meaningful deep dive, here is the “short” list of what 2022 held for Madison:

  1. In January, I helped my parents move my younger brother Matthew into a group home for adults with intellectual disabilities. 
  2. In February, I completed the manuscript of my first book and I started a new job at Catholic Theological Union.
  3. In May, I wrote a piece that was quoted in an Associated Press article, which was subsequently printed in newspapers across the country.
  4. In June, my youngest brother graduated from high school.
  5. In July, that same brother went off to college at San Diego State University.
  6. In August, I began volunteering as Editor-in-Chief of Live Today Well Co’s new VOICES e-zine, and after almost two years of grueling search, Guy finally got a new job.
  7. In September, I had my bachelorette party and bridal shower (and birthday!) all in the same California weekend AND my first book was released AND I wrote another article that was quoted in newspapers all around the country… that was a busy week.
  8. In October, I got married and went on my honeymoon… that was also a busy week.
  9. In November, my parents bought a new house in Lake Las Vegas, Nevada.
  10. In December, I went home to California to say goodbye to the house my family has lived in for 15 years and helped start the “pitching, donating, or packing” process.

Like my favorite creative writing professor in undergrad would say, “Just another chapter for the memoir.” More like 10 chapters.

In the spirit of lists, here’s the only “wrapped” list I ever really bother to make: Top 5 Books Read in 2022 (in no particular order)

  1. Any Man by Amber Tamblyn
  2. All the Crooked Saints by Maggie Stiefvater
  3. Scythe by Neal Shusterman
  4. The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
  5. Is This Anything? By Jerry Seinfeld
  6. BONUS (Because I wanted so badly to finish it before the year’s end, but I finished it today….) The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

And that’s all for now!

Thank you for supporting me through such an ENORMOUS year. Can’t wait for everything that 2023 has in store.

With love,

Madison

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The Author

Hey there, I’m Madison! I’ve started a blog! You can read the full story of its name and my goals here.

The most important bits about me:

  • I am a justice-focused, affirming and questioning, cradle Catholic hopefully bent towards change from the inside-out.
  • I have two younger brothers. I am the stereotypical eldest child.
  • One of those brothers has two profound genetic disabilities: Cri du Chat syndrome and DiGeorge syndrome. Navigating his uniqueness has defined my upbringing and family dynamic. He loves a good restaurant (and I’ll write more on him soon!)
  • Our youngest brother Mike is funnier and taller than us both. He plays the drums (excitedly) and the trombone (begrudgingly)
  • I grew up an Air Force brat. My father retired after 23 years of active duty right before I started high school. I have lived in South Carolina, NSW Australia, Virginia, Northern California, Tulsa OK, and am now happily settled in Hyde Park, Chicago.
  • I have a double-major BA in…
    1. English ( split emphasis in creative writing, gothic lit, and children’s lit)
    2. Theology and Religious Studies
  • I went to Saint Mary’s College of California (#GodIsaGael, but don’t ask me for the theological specs on that…)
  • I have an MA in Theology and Ethics from the University of Chicago’s Divinity School. My research emphasis was disability theology.
  • I work full-time for a Catholic nonprofit that supports academic exploration into the Catholic intellectual tradition where I run their high school program.
  • I also work part-time for L’Arche Chicago.
  • I have PCOS and a broken gallbladder
  • I’m a Special Religious Education (SPRED) catechist
  • Pre-COVID Sunday mornings, you’d find me moving between a Church and a boxing gym and a coffee shop.
  • My very-soon-to-be-more-than-boyfriend was raised ecumenically Christian and now considers himself to be an exploratory agnostic. He is a physicist passionate about making science accessible. He loves space and the mountains. His name is Guy.
  • My big deep dream has always been to be a writer.
  • I’m not sure if I’m a public theologian.”Public theology” stems from the Black, womanist tradition of theology and is meant to help transition theology from a majority white, majority male, exclusionary academic setting and make it accessible. It’s that emphasis on access that makes “public disability theologian” feel so right to me, but it also feels potentially appropriative given my lack of work in womanist theology and my own white identity.
  • I am always learning more

Make sure to check out the social media links in the footer below! I love internet friends, and more often than not, the conversation probably started on Instagram…

You can also find more of my writing at The Catholic Woman, FemCatholic.com, The Young Catholic Woman, and LiveTodayWellCo.

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