Archbishop's column

Before the Cross - Archbishop Robert J. Carlson's Column

'Before The Cross' by Archbishop Robert J. Carlson. Archbishop Carlson is the ninth Archbishop of Saint Louis. Listed below are the most recent columns written by Archbishop Carlson; click on the title to read the column. The Archdiocesan website has more information about Archbishop Robert J. Carlson.

Follow the crucified Christ

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson greeted attendees before a Mass of Thanksgiving for Cardinal Raymond L. Burke Jan. 9 at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis. It was Cardinal Burke’s first Mass at the cathedral since he was elevated to the Sacred College of Cardinals by Pope Benedict XVI.

“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven”
Matthew 5:10

 

Christ is the way to lasting peace

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson greeted Fleur de Lis Ball chair Mary Ciapciak of Annunziata Parish in Ladue and Beth VanHorn of St. Peter Parish in Kirkwood during the Fleur de Lis Ball Dec. 29 at the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at the Arch. Since the annual charity ball began more than 50 years ago, it has raised more than $2.6 million for SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center.

The Quakers have a saying, “There is no way to peace. Peace is the way.” Catholic teaching supports this insight — provided we understand that it is the peace of Christ that is “the way” to achieve lasting peace in our hearts and in our world.

Only the pure of heart can see God

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson presided over an Advent Day of Recollection at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis on Dec. 18.

“Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God”  (Matthew 5:8)

Would you like to see God? Don't answer too quickly. This is a serious question with profound consequences for your daily life. Those men and women who have seen God — the prophets and patriarchs of the Old Testament and the apostles and saints of the new dispensation in the two millennia since the birth of Christ — all had their lives radically transformed as a result of the vision of God which was their privilege and also their sacred burden.

Advent and Christmas are seasons of great joy

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson gave his thanks during a public reception for retiring Bishop Robert J. Hermann in Boland Hall after celebrating a Mass of Thanksgiving Dec. 12. at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis.

Last weekend we celebrated Gaudate Sunday. The Latin word gaudete means rejoice. In his letter to the Philippians, St. Paul tells us to rejoice always because the Lord is near. Christians should always be filled with joy, but we rejoice in a special way during the Advent and Christmas seasons because the Lord is near.

What do we mean when we say that the Lord is near?

Before the Cross | Mercy comes from God, cannot be forced

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson congratulated Danielle Adolphson, 13, as he celebrated Mass and the Sacrament of Confirmation Monday at St. Mark’s Catholic Church in Affton.

A famous quotation from the Merchant of Venice speaks about the nature of forgiveness or mercy. “The quality of mercy is not strained,” Shakespeare writes. “It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven upon the place beneath: it is twice blest; it blesseth him that gives and him that takes.” Mercy “is an attribute to God himself,” the bard continues. And we are most like God, Shakespeare says, “when mercy seasons justice.”

Before the Cross | Complacency is an obstacle to the genuine happiness Jesus teaches

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson, left, introduced Auxiliary Bishop-designate Edward M. Rice during a press conference Dec. 1 announcing the appointment.

It's easy to confuse happiness with comfort. Our sinful human nature — encouraged by advertising and the entertainment media — urges us to seek comfort for its own sake. Happiness as the world defines it is self-centered. It focuses our attention, first and foremost, on taking care of our own individual needs and desires.

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