6 responses to “Thirty Years of Born in the USA

  1. Unexpectedly and mysteriously, I find myself crying. I’m truly not sure why, but let me assure you, I loved reading this post.

    It is moving, so some of the tears are for this I think, to consider you and your younger-than-me parents in this scenario. I am also reminded of the mystical Body of Christ, how we are all woven together, even if our paths seeming never cross… or when they do cross, we don’t always expect the connections to emerge. Gosh, that makes me sound more cynical than I am, but the vast mystery of it touches me.

    Of course, I prayed for Kevin Ahearn as newly-returned-to-church Catholic, never seeing or knowing him,and honestly forgetting all about him in the ensuing years. Then the shock of encountering him as an adult and theologian today. That story and the Springsteen connection are different – yet the same.

    In 1975 I went off to college armed with the then brand new album, Born to Run. Growing up in the NYC area, I had already heard of the local artist that was about to hit the national scene and I loved his music. I saw my first Bruce show in December of that year, 6 hours of music for $3! I saw my last Bruce show about one month ago, 3 hours of music for $110!

    The thing is, last month, all I could think about was the catholicity of the what I was experiencing. Maybe that is why the tears today, the depth of something I was pondering that night. I don’t know. And of course, the dissonance of lament and dancing, which is very catholic and Catholic – and so much a part of all life. If we let it be so.

    Sorry for this ramble of a comment. I’m not rereading it, so my words may not even make sense, or get to any point. Clearly you touched me, for which I thank God, and I thank you.

    • Wow Fran. Thank you for your words. I’m glad this post touched you. and let me assure you, I can’t even get at ticket to my favorite Bruce cover band for $3. So jealous! Thanks again for your words, especially about being woven together in the Body of Christ. I think you’re on to something there.

  2. Wonderful post. What a great tribute to a great album that came to me during high school in the late 80s, when I was in the thick of “experiencing deep loss, regret, pain, and confusion and not knowing what to do next.” I’ve listened to this album countless times, and now my 4-year old asks me almost every time we get in the car to play “Born in USA”. He has no idea what it’s all about, but I’m sure that will come to him over time as he discovers disappointment and struggle. May it drive him to an active effort for justice in a world gone awry.

    (By the way, I’ve enjoyed Wrecking Ball almost as much as I did Born in the USA when it came out. I feel like it captures some of the same grappling with struggle while offering a more pronounced glimpse at hope.)

  3. Katherine, I really enjoyed reading this post and putting Mr. Springsteen aside, what struck me was the fact that had you not been exposed to this music, as I know you were exposed to a lot of music growing up, you may not have had the “ah-ha” moment when the lyrics had their impact. It reminds me how important it is to give a wide variety of experiences to our young children; genres of music, books, theater, etc because we never know what piece the Lord will use to touch their lives at the appropriate time for them. I pray you keep dancing! Jane S

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