In the early 1960s, successful yet dissatisfied Spanish artist Kiko Arguello sought greater spirituality. Arguello wondered about the spiritual meaning to life, or even if God existed at all. For answers, he moved into a shantytown with only a guitar and a Bible. There, he encountered violence and addiction as well as the deeper issues of interior wounds and despair.
A couple enters into marriage with great joy and hope for the future. When a marriage declines and ends in divorce, it's a painful event on so many levels. What makes it even more painful for a Catholic is the feeling that, because of this divorce, a divorcee can no longer be part of the Church at the time her support is most needed.
The Church, however, is still there for a person in this situation. As at other painful moments in life, the Church is there as the field hospital we need when we are wounded by sins or human ugliness.
The first three of the Ten Commandments outline our duties toward God. We are to place Him as first in our life, to respect His name, and to keep His day holy. As Christians, we honor the Lord's day on Sunday in commemoration of Jesus' resurrection from the dead. Other major holy days are included in this commandment as well, as their celebration marks major truths of our faith or events in the life of our Lord or His mother Mary.
Donating one's body to science enables future doctors to directly study the human anatomy and gain needed practice in performing surgery. Such donations also advance medical science by more fully understanding diseases and conditions. These insights lead to better treatments and even preventive measures for future generations.
The character of the Advent season reflects the meaning of the word Advent.
Advent comes from the Latin word advenio, meaning to come. By the very name of the season, the Church calls us to reflect on the two comings of Christ: at the end of time and in His birth at Bethlehem.
Such a timely, good question, and one that I have wondered about myself.
Once, I stopped by a coffeehouse to enjoy coffee with a good book and saw that they were selling chocolate Advent calendars. To me, it made for a curious sight — a secular coffeehouse chain selling a seeming religious item.