By Ioannis Tzortzakakis

Italian Baroque architect Carlo Lurago (Luraghi) died on 22 October 1684 in Passau (a town in Lower Bavaria, Germany). He was born in 1615 from a family of architects in Pellio Intelvi (North Lombardy, Italy). He is considered one of the most significant architects of Czech and Prague Baroque.

When he was at age of 23 he was already skilled in stucco techniques and he moved to Prague, where he had been mostly active. In Prague he built several Jesuit churches and cloisters, including the Jesuit school (the Clementinum), in a premature Baroque style, and the church of Saint Ignatius Loyola in Karlovo Square in the center of the town. His first commission, though, was the stucco and the restoration of the Gothic church of San Salvatore in Prague.

After Prague he went to Passau, where he designed its Cathedral of St. Stephen. Another important example of his work, which he left unfinished because of his death, was the Sanctuary of Maria Taferl in Austria.

Further reading

Clark, Marilyn S. “The Community of Italian Building Masons in Prague, 1535-1720." Mediterranean Studies 8 (1999): 165-73

St. Stephen Cathedral, Passau.
Saint Ignatius Loyola, Prague.
East entrance of the Clementinum, Prague.
Entrance of the church in Maria Taferl.

By Amanda Jette on ---

My wife surprised her coworkers when she came out as trans. Then they surprised her.

Society, pay attention. This is important.  

My wife, Zoe, is transgender. She came out to us — the kids and me — last summer and then slowly spread her beautiful feminine wings with extended family, friends, and neighbors.

A little coming out here, a little coming out there — you know how it is.

It’s been a slow, often challenging process of telling people something so personal and scary, but pretty much everyone has been amazing.

However, she dreaded coming out at the office.

She works at a large technology company, managing a team of software developers in a predominantly male office environment. She’s known many of her co-workers and employees for 15 or so years. They have called her “he” and “him” and “Mr.” for a very long time. How would they handle the change?

While we have laws in place in Ontario, Canada, to protect the rights of transgender employees, it does not shield them from awkwardness, quiet judgment, or loss of workplace friendships. Your workplace may not become outright hostile, but it can sometimes become a difficult place to go to every day because people only tolerate you rather than fully accept you.

But this transition needed to happen, and so Zoe carefully crafted a coming out email and sent it to everyone she works with.

The support was immediately apparent; she received about 75 incredibly kind responses from coworkers, both local and international.

She then took one week off, followed by a week where she worked solely from home. It was only last Monday when she finally went back to the office.

Despite knowing how nice her colleagues are and having read so many positive responses to her email, she was understandably still nervous.

Hell, I was nervous. I made her promise to text me 80 billion times with updates and was more than prepared to go down there with my advocacy pants on if I needed to (I might be a tad overprotective).

And that’s when her office pals decided to show the rest of us how to do it right.

She got in and found that a couple of them had decorated her cubicle to surprise her:

And made sure her new name was prominently displayed in a few locations:

They got her a beautiful lily with a “Welcome, Zoe!” card:

And this tearjerker quote was waiting for her on her desk:

To top it all off, a 10 a.m. “meeting” she was scheduled to attend was actually a coming out party to welcome her back to work as her true self — complete with coffee and cupcakes and handshakes and hugs.


I did go to my wife’s office that day. But instead of having my advocacy pants on, I had my hugging arms ready and some mascara in my purse in case I cried it off while thanking everyone.

I wish we lived in a world where it was no big deal to come out.

Sadly, that is not the case for many LGBTQ people. We live in a world of bathroom bills and “religious freedom” laws that directly target the members of our community. We live in a world where my family gets threats for daring to speak out for trans rights. We live in a world where we can’t travel to certain locations for fear of discrimination — or worse.

So when I see good stuff happening — especially when it takes place right on our doorstep — I’m going to share it far and wide. Let’s normalize this stuff. Let’s make celebrating diversity our everyday thing rather than hating or fearing it.

Chill out, haters. Take a load off with us.

It’s a lot of energy to judge people, you know. It’s way more fun to celebrate and support them for who they are.

Besides, we have cupcakes.

16-year-old Chauncy Black had no money for food, so the straight-A student took the bus to a store in a wealthy part of town and asked a stranger if he could carry groceries to his car in exchange for some donuts. Knowing he needed much more than donuts, Matt White bought a week’s worth of necessities for Chauncy and his disabled mother, started a GoFundMe campaign, and raised over $260K in 12 days. Source 

So this is Chauncy…

…our new favorite person. I’ve been reading about him and looking at the GoFundMe page that Matt White so graciously set up for him, and in the time it took me to make this post (maybe 15 min), I watched the money raised go from $258k to over $262k. This happened in about 15 minutes…

The love is seriously flowing for Chauncy, which is awesome in light of everything else we’ve got going on in the world right now. It’s amazing what a positive attitude and strong work ethic can do for you. Honorable mention goes to the Internet…