Category: Featured

Reflections for Sunday, March 29, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, March 29, 2015

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion Mass Readings: 1st Reading: Isaiah 50:4-7 2nd Reading: Philippians 2:6-11 Responsorial: Psalm 22:8-9, 17-20, 23-24 Gospel: Mark 14:1–15:47 Following Jesus’ Example of Self-sacrifice and Compassion Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! (Mark 11:9) When artists talk about contrast, they’re referring to the […]

The Profound Dignity of Motherhood
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The Profound Dignity of Motherhood

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Mothers are by far the most beautiful creatures in the world. There is nothing more beautiful than a mother. There has never been a beauty pageant winner more beautiful than a pregnant woman. A pregnant woman glows with the grace of God. She is one with God. Her love has borne fruit with the life […]

Devoted to Hearing His Voice
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Devoted to Hearing His Voice

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Not long ago, I did an exercise in which four words were listed horizontally and I had to rank them as they applied to me by giving a “4” to the one most descriptive of myself down to “1” for the least descriptive of me. For example, the first list of words was: independent, compassionate, […]

Sterilization Camps in India
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Sterilization Camps in India

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Anne Roback Morse gave an address on March 13, 2015 at the United Nations surrounding the Commission on the Status of Women at a panel titled, “Coerced Sterilizations, Abortions, and Reproductive Rights.” The following remarks are based on excerpts from that address. Last November, 83 women were sterilized in a matter of hours at a […]

Van Gogh: Accomplishment and Mental Illness
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Van Gogh: Accomplishment and Mental Illness

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Vincent Van Gogh’s career as a painter began when he was 27 years old and lasted a brief ten years, ending with his suicide. His works are, perhaps, better known than those of any other painter and yet during his lifetime he was virtually unknown. He suffered from mental illness.[1] His mental illness drove his […]

Seven Things that are (Way) Better as a Catholic
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Seven Things that are (Way) Better as a Catholic

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Having spent most of my life as an atheist (I converted just 13 years ago), I have a good basis of comparison for the difference between Catholic and non-Catholic life. And without a doubt, these seven things are WAY better now that I’m Catholic! Reprinted with permission from CatholicSistas.com.   1. WEEKENDS My husband and I spent three […]

Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, The Joy of the Gospel
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Front Row With Francis: The Joy of Youth

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In raising children, we rediscover the wealth in youth. On the most basic level, we re-learn the nursery rhymes, we re-memorize Dr. Seuss, and we are fascinated by door-knobs and blue skies and dandelion seeds. There is more to it than this, however. As Pope Francis notes, children are a gift because they witness to […]

Hebrews and the Obedience of Christ
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Hebrews and the Obedience of Christ

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Heb 5:7-9 Christ learned obedience and became the source of eternal salvation The Letter to the Hebrews is a singular spiritual work, one of the most unique books in the Christian Scriptures. For centuries church fathers believed Hebrews to have been written by the Apostle Paul, the great epistoleer of the New Testament, though modern […]

Free to Love: Marriage Vows
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Free to Love: Marriage Vows

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Our marriage vows reflect the fidelity of God’s love for us. The obligations of the marriage covenant – fidelity, love open to new life, and lifelong sexual exclusivity – ask a lot of another as it assumes a lot about ourselves. Too often we make promises we don’t keep, overextend our commitments, or intend fidelity […]

Unless the Grain of Wheat
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Unless the Grain of Wheat

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All of us want the very best for those we love. But as we pursue it, we often have a rude awakening. The best turns out to be quite expensive, whether you are dealing with homes, cars, or colleges. To get it will cost much time and money, maybe even some blood, sweat, and tears. […]

Egg Trafficking and Rented Wombs: UN Learns How Not to Make Babies
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Egg Trafficking and Rented Wombs: UN Learns How Not to Make Babies

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Every seat in the UN auditorium was filled, with a waiting line outside, to hear about making babies. “Online baby making, buying and selling eggs, renting wombs,” said Jennifer Lahl. “We no longer beget our children, we make our children, we build our families.” Lahl is a pediatric nurse turned film director. Her documentaries explore […]

Fear and Natural Family Planning
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Fear and Natural Family Planning

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As far back as I can remember, heights have posed an unwelcomed challenge. I was the kid who scaled the jungle-gym only to become paralyzed at the summit and tearfully beg for rescue. Ferris wheels are totally off-limits and even today escalators require a mental strategy. I never dreamed of spending my days balancing atop […]

Ite ad Joseph
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Ite ad Joseph

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Ite ad Joseph! (Go to Joseph!) It’s the great Latin admonition of the Church, to seek the intercession of the Patron Saint of the Church, and a powerful intercessor at that. Against the backdrop of the new aggressive eugenics that has taken solid root in American medicine, and against the war on the Catholic Church […]

Two Josephs, Both Alike in Chastity
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Two Josephs, Both Alike in Chastity

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With our attention upon St. Joseph today, it might be good to look back at the Old Testament figure for whom Mary’s chaste spouse was most likely named. That would be Joseph, son of Jacob, grandson of Isaac, and great-grandson of Abraham. Joseph is a popular name for Jewish boys precisely as a memorial of this […]

Lover of Poverty
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Lover of Poverty

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Today is the Feast of St. Joseph. He is special to us because he was special to Jesus. I would like to reflect on a title from the Litany of St. Joseph: Lover of Poverty. As Catholics, Jesus teaches that we are to be poor in spirit. St. Joseph is a wonderful example of this […]

LUCY and the Longing of the Heart for More
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LUCY and the Longing of the Heart for More

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I was a young boy in the 1970’s and 80’s, coming of age in the early days of the movie magic of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. of galaxies far, far away, of Close Encounters, and hidden mysteries, of Lost Arks and great adventures. I can honestly say my formation and invitation into wonder and transcendence was assisted, however […]

Challenging Children to Chastity
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Challenging Children to Chastity

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The title of this article is also the name of an extremely valuable online booklet by the late Father Henry V. Sattler, CSsR (1917-1999), yet it is also an assignment for today’s parents. Our children and grandchildren are bombarded daily with messages that contradict common sense and put their very lives in jeopardy. It is […]

Another Step in a Spiritual Journey
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Another Step in a Spiritual Journey

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God guided me into the next step of my spiritual journey recently. I was accepted into formation with the St. Louis, Mo., group of the Secular Carmelites. I’m excited. I have my heart and soul open for what might be ahead. I recently completed my year of “aspirancy” with the Secular Carmelites. That stage involved […]

D.C. Snow's Silver Lining
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D.C. Snow’s Silver Lining

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I admit it: I love the snow and the cold. I love to be outside, gazing up at the stars on cold, crisp evenings. I love how the snow blankets my hillsides. And most of all, I love how snow disrupts daily life — particularly in Washington, D.C. I lived in Washington for nearly eight […]

What I Told My Bishop About the Synod
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What I Told My Bishop About the Synod

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Last week was the final deadline to submit comments to our local bishop about the agenda for the upcoming Synod on the Family, to be reconvened this October at the Vatican. The Synod’s working document, or lineamenta, asked 46 questions about the pastoral care of the family, which the laypeople of our diocese were encouraged […]

Reflections for Sunday, March 22, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, March 22, 2015

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion Mass Readings: 1st Reading:      Jeremiah 31:31-34 2nd Reading      Hebrews 5:7-9 Responsorial:    Psalm 51:3-4, 12-15 Gospel:              John 12:20-33 Welcoming Others into the Church and the Family of God Whoever serves me must follow me. (John 12:26)   You might wonder whether Jesus is giving the cold shoulder to […]

When Faith Falls Out of Fashion
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When Faith Falls Out of Fashion

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In those days, all the princes of Judah, the priests, and the people added infidelity to infidelity, practicing all the abominations of the nations and polluting the Lord’s temple, which he consecrated in Jerusalem (2 Chr 36:14). This is what happens when faith falls out of fashion. The Israelites learned that the hard way. Is […]

Shadows of Suffering Fade in the Light of Christ
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Shadows of Suffering Fade in the Light of Christ

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Maurice Ravel’s Pianoforte Concerto for the left hand was written for Austrian pianist, Paul Wittgenstein, who lost his right arm in the 1st World War. Imagine Wittgenstein’s grief! Music was the center of his world. He grew up in a prominent Viennese household visited by composers such as Johannes Brahms, Gustav Mahler, and Richard Straus: […]

Countries Avoid Controversy, Reject Abortion at Women’s Conference
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Countries Avoid Controversy, Reject Abortion at Women’s Conference

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This year – the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Women’s Conference – thousands of delegates and civil society representatives are gathered in New York to assess 20 years of progress on women’s issues. Rather than haggle late into the nights as is done each year at the UN Commission on the Status of Women, countries […]

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