About Marina McCoy
Marina McCoy is an associate professor of philosophy at Boston College, where she teaches philosophy and in the BC PULSE service learning program. She is the author of Wounded Heroes: Vulnerability as a Virtue in Ancient Greek Philosophy (Oxford University Press, 2013). She and her husband are the parents to a young adult and a teenager and live in the Boston area.

Resurrection

In the Resurrection accounts, Jesus’ friends often need time in order to recognize him. Mary Magdalene initially thinks he is the gardener as she sits near the tomb, mourning. Did she not recognize Jesus because she assumed he was dead, and his Resurrection did not fit into her expectations? Only when he calls her by name does she recognize him. The disciples on the road to Emmaus initially dismiss Jesus as someone who is ignorant […]

Harden Not Our Hearts

An antiphon that we often hear in Lent says, “If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts” (Hebrews 3:15 and Psalm 95:8). This line teaches me a way to think about the journey of Lent: to allow our hearts to be more open and responsive to whatever the Lord has to tell us and the world. Lent is a season of conversion. The Greek term for conversion, metanoia, means “turning around.” To convert […]

Loving Our Enemies

To be a Christian means to love one’s enemy. Jesus’ words and his actions alike testify to this idea. Jesus says, “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:44). From the Cross, he forgives the people who are crucifying him: “Forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34). Such love can be challenging. Consider what it means to love one’s political “enemies,” those who hold beliefs […]

New Year’s Daydreaming

What if instead of starting with New Year’s resolutions, we began with New Year’s daydreaming? January is a time when I eagerly peruse the newly arrived seed catalogues for ideas for springtime plantings. Where I live in the Northeast, the ground is cold and it’s still a long ways off to seed planting in spring. Under the huddle of a warm blanket, my imaginary garden is filled with bright dahlias, plentiful peonies, dramatic roses, and […]

God Has Hope in Us

Advent is a season of hope and expectant waiting. Yet we are faced with many global crises such as climate change, war, poverty, and racism. I find that in looking at the world and its suffering, my own heart is often filled with grief, especially as I wonder about the effects of climate change on my children and grandchildren’s generations. God grants us freedom to act for love, peace, and justice, but also the freedom […]

Finding God in Negative Emotions

While we often rightly emphasize the role of consolation in Ignatian spirituality, I have recently been thinking more about finding God in negative emotions. I don’t here mean when we feel sadness, anger, disappointment, or other strong emotions, that God comes to comfort, soothe, or encourage us. That’s also true, but here I am thinking of cases in which negative emotions—that is, emotions that don’t feel good—already indicate the presence of God. Here are three […]

Setting Down Our Nets

When Jesus calls the fishermen Peter and Andrew, he tells them, “Come follow me.” In response, the new disciples experience a new desire and put down their nets to follow Jesus (Matthew 4:19–20). We, too, can also have various “nets” that can limit our capacity to follow Jesus more closely. One way to pray with this passage is to consider the question: What are my own nets? In the Principle and Foundation, St. Ignatius names […]

Sabbath as a Gift

This coming academic year, I have a sabbatical from teaching at my academic institution. I’m thankful to have long periods of time to work on a research project without interruption, when normally I must try to discern how to juggle teaching, service, and research. The term “sabbatical” is rooted in the notion of Sabbath or Hebrew shabbath, to rest from work. While I have already begun writing, I have also been exploring more deeply how […]

Leaving Behind the Shoes

About halfway into my time on the Camino de Santiago, my toes began to develop blisters. I had planned my footwear carefully, researching many conflicting shoe recommendations on websites where fellow travelers on the Camino had shared their advice: hiking boots vs. shoes, trail runners with or without waterproofing; half a dozen different recommendations on socks. I tried on at least nine or ten different pairs of shoes at three different outdoor shops, before finally […]

On the Camino, Everywhere Is Home, and Yet…

I recently returned from walking part of the Camino de Santiago in Spain, along with other faculty colleagues exploring the continuation of a recent course for students on pilgrimage. Seven of us traveled through mountains and forest trails, via small cities and pig farms, walking 12 to 16 miles a day with all our necessities carried in our backpacks. While I am still integrating what the experience means to me, a few moments stand out. […]

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