catholic st. louis magazine

BUILD MY CHURCH | Annual Catholic Appeal takes cue from St. Francis

When Tom Crow is not fixing cars, he teaches at St. John Bosco’s parish school of religion. PSRs are among the ministries supported by the Annual Catholic Appeal.

It's time for art class, and Sister Teresa crouches alongside Abby McCarthy as she flattens a ball of Play-Doh on the table. She reaches over and plucks out a heart-shaped cookie cutter from the plastic bin on the table and helps the little girl stamp out a fresh image from the bright pink pancake she's just formed.

"Tin-dun," Sister Teresa proclaims. That's Vietnamese for heart. Abby perfectly echos the pronunciation. Sister Teresa breaks out in a satisfactory grin, pleased with her pint-sized protege's ability to say the word so well.

The first hospital in St. Louis? It was Catholic.

The Daughters of Charity established the first hospital in St. Louis, and this facility at Fourth and Spruce streets was their second hospital building. The first was a 3-room log cabin a block away.

Being the first of anything can be difficult. Like opening the first hospital west of the Mississippi -- really, it's not as easy as it sounds.

Hot cross buns remind us of Jesus as the Bread of life

Father Francis Hein, O.S.B. from the Abbey of St. Mary and St. Louis, developed his own recipe for hot cross buns.

The pagans were among the first to make them. Queen Elizabeth I banned them. The British love them with tea. For centuries, hot cross buns have been a longstanding Lenten tradition. These densely toasted buns, loaded with dried fruit, spices and topped with a sweet trace of icing, have an important religious significance, according to Benedictine Father Francis Hein of St. Louis Abbey.

"They remind us that this is the bread of life that comes to us through the cross. And the icing signifies that we're rewarded with the sweetness of everlasting life."

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