Voices

Judith Valente, a regular contributor to NPR and "Religion and Ethics Newsweekly," is a journalist, poet and essayist. She is the author of Atchison Blue: A Search for Silence, a Spiritual Home and a Living Faith, named best spirituality book in paperback for 2014 by the Catholic Press Association and one of the three best spirituality books by Religion Newswriters Association. Her book, The Art of Pausing, was runner up for the Catholic Press Association book award in 2014.

Ms. Valente began her work as a staff reporter for The Washington Post. She later joined the staff of The Wall Street Journal, reporting from that paper's Chicago and London bureaus. She was twice a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, first in the public service category as part of a team of reporters at The Dallas Times Herald in the 1980s. In 1993, she was a finalist for the Pulitzer in the feature writing category for her front page article in The Wall Street Journal chronicling the story of a religiously conservative father caring for his son dying of AIDS.

Arts & CultureBooks
Judith Valente
"The church as a whole, cannot grasp the vastness of God," Peter Phan argues.
Arts & CulturePoetry
Judith Valente
Gwendolyn Brooks' poetry presented readers with a look into the life of African-Americans.
Activists with the March to Springfield hold a protest and rally outside the governor's office at the Capitol in Springfield, Ill. Tuesday, May 30, 2017. (Rich Saal/The State Journal-Register via AP)
Politics & SocietyDispatches
Judith Valente
The Illinois General Assembly ended its regular session on May 31 without passing a budget for the third year in a row. The length of the legislative stalemate is unprecedented.
Politics & SocietyDispatches
Judith Valente
Illinois is one of about 35 states that have “revenge laws” that prohibit anyone from publicly disseminating intimate or embarrassing content about others without their consent.
Arts & CultureDispatches
Judith Valente
The women of the Redbird Writers Guild shared a common belief that writing with faithful trust can lead to transformation—their own and ultimately that of their readers.
Lowell Thompson
Politics & SocietyDispatches
Judith Valente
Mr. Thompson, one of the first African-Americans hired by a major Chicago advertising agency, is on a crusade to convince people of all races that this is not a black or white matter. Human beings represent a range of color.
Edward Lally (center) is joined by his schola, Sarah Coffman, Katherine Keberlein, Ngaire Bull and Sarah Beatty, at St. Edward's Catholic Church in Chicago on April 8, 2017. Photo courtesy of Sarah Beatty.
FaithDispatches
Judith Valente
With chant “you’re expressing something in pure melody."
Politics & SocietyDispatches
Judith Valente
What motivates assailants to brazenly post their crimes to Facebook?
In this May 30, 2016 file photo, police work the scene where a man was fatally shot in the chest in Chicago (E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune via AP).
Politics & SocietyDispatches
Judith Valente
In a five page “open letter,” Zachary Fardon traced problems in the city’s most troubled neighborhoods to neglect “rooted in ugly truths about power politics, race and racism.
Carmen Severino, an abuse survivor, is embraced during a news conference that heralded the release of thousands of documents from the Chicago Archdiocese on past cases of clergy sexual abuse in January 2014. (CNS photo/Jim Young, Reuters)
FaithDispatches
Judith Valente
Ms. Collins’ complaints “mirror” concerns she and other members of the National Review Board raised in the early years of the abuse scandal. “The whole thing spoke to me of ‘nothing’s changed.’”