god

DEAR FATHER | Church remains hopeful children who died before birth will have eternal life with God

First, let's review.

Baptism is the necessary sacrament for one to receive to enter the Kingdom of Heaven (John 3:5). While ideally one would receive this sacrament, the Church has understood from her foundation two other ways to receive the graces of this sacrament.

The Baptism of Desire is received by someone preparing for baptism but dying before the sacrament is conferred, or by a person who never hears about Christ but lives a good life as their culture understands that to be. The Baptism of Blood is received by someone who is martyred for the faith, but isn't baptized.

MAN OF THE HOUSE | Seeing God through intimate eyes

I had a special photo as the screen-saver on my smartphone for a long time. Whenever I needed a smile, I just looked at that picture of one of the most memorable undertakings in my life — the day I went sky-diving. I had glanced at it countless times when out of the blue a certain realization struck me.

I look just like my dad.

The skin tone, the shape of my face, the gray hair and beard — spitting image. And the eyes. I've got my father's eyes.

BRIMMING WITH HOPE | Trusting God in the Labyrinth

June is a natural time to review the previous school year and look forward to the next. While school years are linear on a calendar, they ebb and flow continuously. Recently I shared with our elementary principals that a good metaphor for the past school year is that of the labyrinth.

BEFORE THE CROSS | The heart’s emotions and passions are a path to union with God

In the heart of Jesus, the center of Christianity is set before us." So wrote Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI). It's a fitting point as we celebrate the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus on June 23.

Why should the feast of the Sacred Heart matter? One reason is because of the 12 promises made by Jesus to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque regarding those who practice devotion to the Sacred Heart. The promises are listed in the accompanying box.

TWENTY SOMETHING | ‘Let your yes mean yes’: Honesty with God and others

Rachel Gardner has a bad habit, shared by many young adults: She says "yes" when she ought to say "no."

A friend might ask to do lunch on Wednesday.

"I say, 'Of course,'" Rachel recounted, "and in my head, I can see my totally squashed schedule."

The friend asks if noon works.

"I say, 'Sounds great,' knowing I have something at 1:30 p.m.," Rachel confessed.

Then comes the moment she knows she should leave their lunch, but she hesitates to cut the time short — "time I didn't have in the first place."

POPE’S MESSAGE | God dreams big, wants to transform world, defeat evil

Pope Francis greeted a group of nuns as he arrived for his general audience in St. Peter’s Square May 17 at the Vatican.

VATICAN CITY — God is right by the side of each person on earth, seeing each individual's pain and wanting to bring hope and joy, Pope Francis said.

"He calls us by name and tells us, 'Rise up, stop weeping, because I have come to free you,'" the pope said May 17 at his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square.

The pope continued his series of talks on Christian hope by looking at the Gospel of John's account of St. Mary Magdalene visiting Jesus' tomb.

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