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Tag: suffering

Our Faith Is Not About Clean Uniforms

June 20, AD2017 2 Comments
Our Faith Is Not About Clean Uniforms

A few years back I was visiting a friend when a man in a sparkling white uniform walked out of my friend’s home. When my friend told me that this gentleman was there to repair his washing machine, I was somewhat surprised. After all, I thought, how can anyone repair anything without getting at least […]

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The Despair of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

June 19, AD2017 2 Comments
The Despair of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child has a host of artistic problems, but its most profound failures are of moral understanding. Whereas the original novels by J.K. Rowling embraced the Christian sanctity of life, understanding that death was an evil, and expressed hope for repentance and forgiveness of sins, this late coming play, written by […]

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A REAL Approach to Counseling: Helping Teens Engage Fear

June 9, AD2017 1 Comment
A REAL Approach to Counseling: Helping Teens Engage Fear

We all have a moment in our lives when our innocence is lost, when we come to see that the world is sometimes a dangerous and fearful place. The sad reality is that we live in a culture of fear and personal pain that is the result of sin and selfishness. As a Catholic youth […]

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Strength in Weakness

May 31, AD2017 2 Comments
Strength in Weakness

strength A few weeks ago, I visited a very devout aunt of mine in the hospital. But I had forgotten what kind of person this woman is. I did not remember the degree of her rugged, enduring, piercing, and warm, Christ-like heart. Struggling with a system-wide infection to say nothing of other health challenges currently, […]

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My Grandmother’s Cross Has Become Our Cross

April 20, AD2017 2 Comments
My Grandmother’s Cross Has Become Our Cross

My grandmother, Opal, never raised her voice. She found joy in the simplest things: reading a book, playing scrabble, or completing her crossword puzzles. Her house was spotless all the time; not one thing was ever out of place. Her curio cabinet with filled with shiny, colored dishes and trinkets. Some trinkets she bought at […]

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There is No Saint of the Broken Hearted

April 18, AD2017 5 Comments
There is No Saint of the Broken Hearted

When times are tough, I — like many Catholics — turn to my friends, the saints. Whether you’re searching for a job, battling breast cancer, or asking for a safe journey, there’s usually a saint for every cause. So why is there a saint for toothaches, bad storms, and mice infestations, but not for the […]

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Suffering and the Christ of Good Friday

April 14, AD2017 2 Comments
Suffering and the Christ of Good Friday

It has frequently been said that Good Friday is meaningless without Easter Sunday. Certainly this statement is true for, as St. Paul explains, if Christ has not risen, our faith is in vain (cf. 1 Corinthians 15:14). We must not overlook the fact, however, that Easter Sunday is not possible without Good Friday. As much […]

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The Second Beatitude: Blessed Are Those Who Mourn

April 2, AD2017 1 Comment
The Second Beatitude: Blessed Are Those Who Mourn

 Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. What do the words of this beatitude mean? We want happiness, so we would say, blessed are those who rejoice. But all of us suffer, some almost constantly. There are countless ways to suffer here on earth and many degrees of suffering. Our suffering can […]

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The Thirst of Jesus

March 24, AD2017 2 Comments
The Thirst of Jesus

The last words a person says before dying are cherished by those who care for him or her. They are always remembered and reflect upon, since they reveal what that individual considered to be truly important. During someone’s final moments, the little time and energy left are dedicated to addressing what is most precious in […]

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Remember that You are Dust

March 1, AD2017 1 Comment
Remember that You are Dust

“Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return.” These are the traditional words with which the priest traces the ashes on the foreheads of the faithful on Ash Wednesday. But the Roman Missal gives the priest an option: he can say instead, “Repent and believe in the gospel.” There are also two […]

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Pope Francis: A Corrupt Creation, Christian Hope, and Rebirth

February 23, AD2017 10 Comments
Pope Francis:  A Corrupt Creation, Christian Hope, and Rebirth

On February 22, Pope Francis continued his catechesis on the importance of  Christian hope in the face sin during his weekly General Audience. Although his reflections focused on the corruption of creation, they are not the opinions of a left-leaning environmentalist but the profound insights of a man of God. The Environment Unfortunately, many Catholics will most […]

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Real Humility

February 6, AD2017 2 Comments
Real Humility

I asked for it. I really did. I knew that I would never find peace until I got down on my knees and begged for humility. Real humility. I was successful in what I thought were important ways. I was a daily communicant. At the time, I had been married to my wife, Karol, for […]

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The Power of Your Smile: St. Teresa of Calcutta

January 31, AD2017 0 Comments
The Power of Your Smile: St. Teresa of Calcutta

Wisdom from a Great Saint St. Teresa of Calcutta was canonized on September 4, 2016, in St. Peter’s Square, Vatican City by Pope Francis. She died on September 5, 1997, and the world anxiously awaited this canonization. One of the greatest themes of St. Teresa’s life was teaching the world the importance of loving others, […]

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Slivers

January 31, AD2017 2 Comments
Slivers

I had a love-hate relationship with my mother’s tweezers and sewing needles growing up. I always ran to my mom when I so often would get wood slivers in my fingers as I spent summer days outside on our Northeastern Colorado farm. Back then I was found climbing fences, running in and out of sheds, […]

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Shusaku Endo’s Silence and the Divine Command to Sin

January 7, AD2017 4 Comments
Shusaku Endo’s Silence and the Divine Command to Sin

Shusaku Endo’s novel Silence is one of the most unsettling novels a Catholic could read. Recounting the story of Portuguese Jesuits facing martyrdom and persecution in seventeenth-century Japan, Endo does not hesitate to pose to his characters – and readers – the most difficult moral dilemmas imaginable regarding persecution and apostasy, and even whether God might […]

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Finding God in the Lake Effect Snow

December 26, AD2016 4 Comments
Finding God in the Lake Effect Snow

It came earlier than usual this year. Typically the “lake effect” snow doesn’t hit until January and then comes regularly through April. It takes the cold clippers from Canada to come down and blow over the relatively warm Great Lakes (which typically remain unfrozen throughout the winter) for there to be the sudden and blinding […]

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Finding Reasons to Celebrate the Triumph of the Cross

September 14, AD2016 0 Comments
Finding Reasons to Celebrate the Triumph of the Cross

  Every 14th of September, the Catholic Church, celebrates the Feast of the Triumph of the Cross. It is also known as the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. The history of this celebration centers on the story of how Queen Helena, the mother of Emperor Constantine, was supposed to have found the […]

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The Solution To All Your Problems

September 8, AD2016 2 Comments
The Solution To All Your Problems

  Back in 1958, in the still early days of Rock ‘N Roll, Don and Phil Everly, the Everly Brothers, released a song entitled “Problems.”  True to its title, the song started off, “Problems, problems, problems all day long.”  The entire song, all three simple stanzas of it, was under two minutes long and as […]

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Lessons from Prison Ministry

August 18, AD2016 1 Comment
Lessons from Prison Ministry

One Saturday morning about a year and a half ago I attended training to volunteer at the local county jail. During the training, the deputy instructor spent the morning teaching us everything that can go wrong in a prison. Riots, lock downs, power outages, disease outbreak, homemade weapons – it really is quite an impressive […]

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Muslims: Nuancing the Good and Bad

August 5, AD2016 33 Comments
Muslims: Nuancing the Good and Bad

About a month ago, during the Euro Cup, I was impressed reading a few pieces in the press about Mesut Özil, an extremely talented Muslim soccer player who often opens his palms in prayer during stoppages in play and reads the Koran before matches. I saw a quote from him saying, “I’d rather not play […]

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