Commentary

By: Mary Hood Hart
Originally Appeared in : 9907-3/28/19

I was recently reviewing the Beatitudes with a group of parents and children preparing for First Communion. When we arrived at “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy,” I realized that “mercy” is unfamiliar to children. And while I tried to explain by using the word “forgiveness,” I realized that “forgiveness” falls short. 

 

By: Father Douglas K. Clark
Originally Appeared in : 9907-3/28/19

As we continue to accompany our catechumens and candidates on their 40-day Lenten journey “from ashes to the living font” of Baptism at the Easter Vigil, by fasting, prayer and charity, we are being purified from our sins and enlightened by God’s grace. This journey is part of our ongoing sanctification (“being made holy”), so that we become worthy to stand in the presence of the Holy God of Israel and behold him in the beatific vision that will make us happy and blessed for all eternity. 

 

By: Mary Hood Hart
Originally Appeared in : 9906-3/14/19

On the surface, we Catholics may seem to contradict ourselves. On the one hand, we believe that, created in God’s image, all people are good and have inherent value. On the other hand, we are reminded on Ash Wednesday and throughout Lent that we are dust. Lent reminds us of our mortality, our sinfulness, and our need to repent. 

 

By: Father Douglas K. Clark
Originally Appeared in : 9906-3/14/19

During the summer of 2018, a sequence of events unfolded that snowballed into a major crisis for the Catholic Church in the United States and throughout the world, a crisis I have called “The Perfect Storm.” 

 

By: Mary Hood Hart
Originally Appeared in : 9905-2/28/19

I witnessed the body of Christ tormented and anguished. I witnessed the Body of Christ cast into shadow and fear. I witnessed the suffering body of Christ on an ordinary weekday in an ordinary North Carolina town. 

 

By: Father Douglas K. Clark
Originally Appeared in : 9905-2/28/19

On Jan. 17, 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower, gave a farewell address to the American people. He famously stated, “We must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex.” 

 

By: Mary Hood Hart
Originally Appeared in : 9904-2/14/19

It’s human nature to determine and ascribe worth. Usually, doing so is helpful to us. For example, we decide if it’s worth our time to wait in line for a Black Friday sale. We decide if a product is worth the money it costs. We decide if an activity is worth the amount of effort it takes. 

 

By: Father Douglas K. Clark
Originally Appeared in : 9904-2/14/19

A friend recently asked me to reflect on the difference between believing in God and trusting in him, in these terms: “I think for most semi-active Catholics believing in God is easy – I mean, someone had to create all of this. But having faith [or trusting] in God – purposely listening for God, discerning where we are called, and then moving in that direction with faith [or trust] in God in our hearts--that is saintly behavior. How does one develop faith?”

 

By: Mary Hood Hart
Originally Appeared in : 9903-1/31/19

Most readers of this column would agree that if the law forced a physician to perform an abortion, that physician would be morally obligated to follow his or her conscience, refuse the patient’s request and break the law. Yet these same readers may be unable to accept this moral imperative to protect life in other cases. 

 

By: Father Douglas K. Clark
Originally Appeared in : 9903-1/31/19

On Dec. 8, 1941, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt famously called Dec. 7 “a date which will live in infamy” because of Japan’s “sneak attack” on Pearl Harbor that took the lives of some 2,500 American servicemen.

 

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