AN EDITOR’S LIFE | Film highlights need for accountability

Teak Phillips

In an era when many of us rush to share or receive the latest information, it's good to be reminded that methodical journalism is still important.

That's the main message I took from "Spotlight," a film released last year that dramatizes the 2002 Boston Globe investigation that exposed the "clergy abuse scandal," as it's known now. The film has been nominated for six Academy Awards.

FAITH AND CULTURE | Nearness to Christ

F. Javier Orozco

Recently, I noted some of the significant ways in which photography has evolved, especially through new technology. For starters, in earlier days, many couldn't afford a decent 35mm film camera or wouldn't know how to operate one. Now smart phones come with a built-in camera — ever ready to snap a selfie or group photo at any given moment, and send it instantaneously to social media platforms.

Faithful Fan | Some Rams personnel did connect with the community

Joseph Kenny

The owner of the team now known as the Los Angeles Rams is likely the most unpopular person in St. Louis for moving the football franchise.

In spite of the owner's aloofness, there were some within the Rams organization, especially the players, who connected with the St. Louis community and particularly St. Patrick Center, a Catholic Charities federated agency that provides opportunities for self-sufficiency and dignity to people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

TWENTY SOMETHING | Rising above Instagram envy isn't easy

Christina Capecchi

Melina Birchem has uploaded 777 images to her Instagram account over the past two years: sushi, Starbucks, her new tattoo, rosary beads, cowboy boots. Sometimes the juxtaposition is jarring. A glowing monstrance, a chilled margarita. A snapshot from waitressing, a prayer journal documenting her consecration to the Blessed Mother.

MAN OF THE HOUSE | Reflections on the will of the Father

Mike Eisenbath

This past Advent as I attended Sacrament of Reconciliation, the priest mercifully imposed a seemingly unchallenging penance: say one "Our Father." The 10-year-old Mike would have loved that penance a whole lot more than what the priest typically prescribed at the time. I'll never forget the day he prescribed young Mike an entire Rosary as penance.

BRIMMING WITH HOPE | Nothing beats a firsthand experience

Kurt Nelson

It happens nearly every time I go on a trip. Even though I photograph all the amazing things I experience, I get home only to find that the photographs failed to capture the full essence of what I was documenting. I might also tell friends and loved ones, "wish you were here" when I miss their company. But I don't just miss their physical presence, I also want them to see and feel the same things I am and won't be able to fully express it in words or pictures. Nothing beats experiencing something firsthand. Nothing beats being there yourself.

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