Outdoors

Like St. Hubert, conservationists are called to conversion

Centuries ago, a man was stalking a magnificent stag in the woods, skipping out on Good Friday prayer. The stag stopped and looked right at the hunter — the sort of moment that gets our blood pumping and our limbs shaking. Some call it buck fever. For Hubertus, it was a calling.

In the basket of the stag's glorious rack was a glowing crucifix. He heard a voice warning him to turn to God or face eternity in hell.

National Parks offer spiritual refuge

A view of Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona is seen from the south rim Sept. 12.

WASHINGTON — From the dramatic vistas of the Grand Canyon in Arizona to the glistening waters of Cape Cod in Massachusetts, national parks have stood as places of wonder, history and culture.

John Muir, considered the father of our national parks, petitioned U.S. lawmakers to set aside such places for preservation, play and prayer.

"Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and cheer and give strength to body and soul alike," wrote the 19th-century naturalist and philosopher in his book "Yosemite."

At World Youth Day, youth encouraged to take 'path of craziness' toward God's mercy

Kenrick-Glennon seminarians enjoy a mister during a visit to the main square in Krakow. Pictured, from left, are Cole Bestgen, Jacob Brock, Ryan Quarnstrom, Andrew Auer and Joe Detwiler.

The sight of 1.6 million people, on their knees in silent prayer, overwhelmed Nick Lee.

Pope Francis led the evening candlelight prayer vigil and eucharistic adoration July 30 at Campus Misericordiae in Krakow, Poland .

"As Pope Francis was at adoration, there was a pink sunset behind his head," said Lee, director of the archdiocesan Young Adult Ministry. "The monstrance was (the shape) of the Blessed Mother, and the Eucharist was where the womb would be. Seeing 1.6 million silent people holding candles was just amazing. It gave you chills."

Catholic, Jewish groups to hold hunger seder April 8

The archdiocesan Office of Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs and the Michael and Barbara Newmark Institute for Human Relations at the Jewish Community Relations Council of St. Louis are sponsoring a Community Hunger Seder at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 8, at the Cardinal Rigali Center in Shrewsbury.

Sacred Heart Family Camp unites families in fun, faith

At first glance, it looked like any other campground. A group of teens was playing volleyball in the courtyard. Several adults sat under the covered awning of a cabin, sipping their morning coffee.

But not far in the distance, a priest sat in a metal chair among the woods as he heard someone's confession. Inside one of the cabins, a woman religious was giving a talk on the gifts of the Holy Spirit. This was no ordinary camp.

For Olympic swimmer, 'sense of humility' key to all her accomplishments

Lia Neal, bottom, and Isla Hutchinson Maddox, seniors at Convent of the Sacred Heart School in Manhattan, took a break from their training in this 2010 photograph. Both qualified for the U.S. Olympic trials in Omaha, Neb., in June, and Lia advanced to the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, where she won a bronze medal July 28 in the 4x100-meter freestyle relay.

NEW YORK -- When she qualified for the Olympic Games in June, swimmer Lia Neal, a rising senior at the Convent of the Sacred Heart School in Manhattan, said she felt like it was a dream.

On July 28, she and her three teammates on the U.S. swimming team claimed a bronze medal in the women's 4x100 freestyle relay in London, and afterward Neal told reporters the experience was beyond her expectations.

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