Category: Learn & Live the Faith

Faith in Action
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Faith in Action

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“I have no choice. I am not in the position to, alone, go into the ghetto and fight. I chose Charleston because it is most historic city in my state, and at one time had the highest ratio of blacks to Whites in the country. We have no skinheads, no real KKK, no one doing […]

A Tireless Pastor Leaves the Killing Fields of Syria
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A Tireless Pastor Leaves the Killing Fields of Syria

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It would be hard to find a more dangerous posting in the Jesuit order today than ministering to the faithful of this city in the heart Syria’s “Valley of the Christians.” And Syrian Jesuit Father Ziad Hilal has been based here for half a dozen years, witnessing some of the worst horrors of the country’s […]

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

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Envy, greed, selfishness, harsh words, sibling rivalry, infidelity, illness, tragedy, violence, abuse – the list sounds like much like the headlines on your average nightly news show or the subject of anguished conversations among distraught parents and grandparents lamenting the discord they witness daily in their own families. We listen to the stories, shake our […]

The Playgrounds of War I
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About an Unwanted Boy

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I’ve just watched an in depth report about a baby boy born via surrogacy in India on November 12, 2012, and left behind by his Australian parents. This tragic story highlights the dirty side of buying and selling and trafficking in children, the complicity of government officials, and the corrupt $500 million per year surrogacy […]

The American Address
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The American Address

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The 1857 Supreme Court Dred Scott decision said that Dred Scott, his wife, and their unborn child were not human beings, but were property to be bought and sold. Led by proslavery Chief Justice Roger Taney, the Court created a new national constitutional right to own slaves. Taney, a Democrat and a Roman Catholic, was […]

A Revolutionary Approach to the Bible: Jairus’ Daughter and The Enlightenment
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A Revolutionary Approach to the Bible: Jairus’ Daughter and The Enlightenment

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In the days when states were still “the colonies” and men wore powdered wigs, a new way of thinking captured the intelligentsia of the western world.  “The miracle stories in the Bible and the lives of the saints may be quaint, entertaining, and even have symbolic meaning.  But certainly we should not take them literally!  […]

Let's Fall in Love
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Let’s Fall in Love

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Some things make you feel just a little more alive. Hearing a moving song. Helping someone in need. Reading words that make you cry. Seeing a sunset splash the sky with breath-taking colors. And the feeling is multiplied immeasurably if you are sharing those experiences with someone special. Indeed, love completes us as human beings. […]

Where Is the Mission Field?
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Where Is the Mission Field?

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Last week I went on a mission trip. I was able to travel with our youth group from Georgia to Cincinnati, OH to work with the Franciscans for the Poor. We stayed at the Tau House, a converted convent that is now used to house groups who wish to come and do mission work within […]

Reflections for Sunday, June 28, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, June 28, 2015

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion Mass Readings: 1st Reading Wisdom 1:13-15; 2:23-24 2nd Reading: 2 Corinthians 8:7, 9, 13-15 Responsorial: Psalm 30:2, 4-6, 11-13 Gospel: Mark 5:21-43 Putting Our Faith in Jesus’ Healing Love, Mercy, and Compassion Please, come. (Mark 5:23) Imagine what Jairus must have felt as he approached Jesus—his impatience, […]

A Mission: "Be Jesus Today"
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A Mission: “Be Jesus Today”

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A sticky note on the bottom of my computer monitor at work features three simple words, but a powerful command: Be Jesus Today If I have a consistently whispered “mantra,” that’s it. I say it to myself every morning. The note reminds me of my personal desire throughout the workday. At night, as I reflect […]

Clergy Heretics and Heretical Synods: Been There, Done That
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Clergy Heretics and Heretical Synods: Been There, Done That

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There is some fear that the Vatican’s upcoming fall Synod on the Family will proclaim and promote heresy. The feared heresy would be in contradicting the explicit scriptural teaching of Jesus and of St. Paul regarding the prohibition of divorced-and-remarried Catholics receiving Holy Communion. Historically, the Church has dealt with heresy accepted, proclaimed, and promulgated […]

Of God and Godparents
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Of God and Godparents

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Everyone loves seeing the babies baptized early Sunday morning. Some squeal with delight while others cry their eyes out as the cold Holy Water runs across their heads. I’m always curious though about who the parents chose as godparents for their child. If physical similarities matter, many seem to have chosen a sibling or two […]

Haitian Bishop: 'Human Restoration' is Church's Top Priority
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Haitian Bishop: ‘Human Restoration’ is Church’s Top Priority

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By Antonia von Alten NEW YORK—Five years after Haiti’s devastating earthquake, the local Church has suffered a series of brazen attacks on Church properties. Between November 2015 and February of this year there were more than 20 robberies of religious communities, a bishop reported. In an interview with international Catholic charity Aid to the Church […]

Calls to Change Helms Amendment Not about Rape Victims
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Calls to Change Helms Amendment Not about Rape Victims

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Abortion advocates are exploiting victims of sexual violence in conflict to advance their own narrow agenda – opening up a new funding stream to international abortion groups and changing abortion laws in countries where restricted. Global humanitarian groups receive hundreds of millions of dollars to help the most vulnerable – many in areas of conflict […]

Distracted
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Distracted

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“Was daddy involved with us when we were little?” she asked. “Did he want to spend time with us?” I wondered why she was soliciting these questions although I guessed it had more to do with the fathers of the families that she worked for than her own father. As a young adult woman who […]

woman, prison
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The Gift of Mercy

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I’ve facilitated a women’s expressive writing class for almost five years now. My students have been an eclectic group. A small percentage of the students have been marginally literate, while some have their GED or high school diplomas, a few have technical or associate degrees, and others have a bachelor’s or master’s degree. They are […]

Reflections for Sunday, June 21, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, June 21, 2015

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion Mass Readings: 1st Reading: Job 38:1, 8-11 2nd Reading: 2 Corinthians 5:14-17 Responsorial: Psalm 107:23-26, 28-31 Gospel: Mark 4:34-41 Trusting the Lord in All Circumstances The wind ceased and there was great calm. (Mark 4:39) Several years ago, a United States Coast Guard cutter was in port […]

Traditionalists and Hard Realities
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Traditionalists and Hard Realities

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For the average layman, much, if not the vast majority of discussions about Catholic traditionalists, Vatican II, and the Reform of the Reform, exists solely online and in the realm of the Catholic zeitgeist. Yet from time to time, we Americans are privy to a real-life disputes amongst the various factions of Catholics. All politics […]

Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, The Joy of the Gospel
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Front Row With Francis: How Families Deal With Illness

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On June 10th, the Pope’s Wednesday general audience continued his catecheses on the family, focusing on the theme of sickness and suffering. Man experiences his own fragility primarily in the family, first as a child and, then, as an elderly person.While family sickness presents obvious challenges, it can also be a source of quiet strength […]

Don't Fear the Reaping:  The Parable of the Mustard Seed
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Don’t Fear the Reaping: The Parable of the Mustard Seed

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Mk 4:26-34 It is the smallest of all seeds and becomes the largest of plants In his teachings Jesus frequently used parables. The word “parable” is derived from an ancient Greek word that means “comparison.” Parables are like brain-teasers: they compare differing realities and use one example to shed light on the deeper meaning of […]

Wounds
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Wounds

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Having my phone fixed a few weeks ago, I had some spare time to walk around by myself in a shopping center I usually don’t patronize. I used to really enjoy shopping. It was a frequent pastime for me and my mom. Now, without her, the bloom is off the rose. Sometimes it’s only a […]

Answering Some Vital Questions
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Answering Some Vital Questions

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Where do you go when it starts to rain? That and some related “musical questions” have been playing over and over in my mind for the last few months. They have made for some interesting soul-searching. For me, the self-examination began on the road. I have to take three business trips annually, all to Kansas […]

Reflections for Sunday, June 14, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, June 14, 2015

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion Mass Readings: 1st Reading Ezekiel 17:22-24 2nd Reading: Corinthians 5:6-10 Responsorial: Psalm 92:2-3, 13-16 2 Gospel: Mark 4:26-34 Allowing Jesus to Teach Us the Mysteries of the Kingdom To his own disciples he explained everything in private. (Mark 4:34) Jesus spent a lot of time explaining things […]

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