Church teaching articles and columns

Below are the latest columns from the St. Louis Review. Click on a title or the 'Continue Reading' link to read the whole story.

October 6, 2016

To worry is to think about problems, especially because we think something bad might happen. Immediately in this definition we see that worry is mostly a self-centered activity, focusing exclusively on my thoughts. Also, notice how worry presupposes that we are anticipating an outcome to the situation we are thinking about.

Both of these elements about worry contradict the meaning of prayer. When we pray, we do not just say these things...

September 29, 2016

El 4 de octubre celebramos la fiesta de San Francisco de Asís. La figura de Francisco podría ser considerada demasiado romántica para nuestro tiempo; una de sus estatuas lo representa vigilando un jardín interminable, y lo reduce a poco más que una bonita estatua de jardín. Sin embargo, aún esta noción romántica apunta hacia la verdad- que podemos considerar de provecho: La vida de San Francisco nos ayuda a seguir a Jesús y a encontrar la paz....

September 29, 2016

We celebrate the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi Oct. 4. The figure of Francis may be a bit over-romanticized in our time; a statue of him watches over countless gardens, reduced to little more than a nice garden statue. But even that romantic notion points to a truth — that we could ponder with profit: Francis' life helps us to follow Jesus and find peace.

In the exchange between St. Francis and Sultan Malek al-Kamil in the Fifth Crusad...

September 29, 2016

The readings for the 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time demonstrate the power that gratitude and thanksgiving have in our lives.

In the first reading, a Gentile, Naaman the leper, comes to Elisha, the Lord's prophet, for healing. Naaman was a man of considerable means and had servants at his disposal. Leprosy was a profound embarrassment for him. Even more embarrassing, Elisha refused to come out to meet Naaman, to lay hands on him and pray w...

September 22, 2016

Qué pasa si tenemos que sufrir? — ¿Cómo soportamos con fe el sufrimiento?

Las lecturas de esta semana son del libro de Job, así que es un buen momento para hacer esta pregunta.

Una característica importante de la historia de Job es el sufrimiento inmerecido. El sufrió la pérdida de sus bueyes, ovejas y niños — todo en el mismo día. Sus amigos preguntaron qué pecado había cometido para merecer este castigo. Job insistió — verdader...

September 22, 2016

What if we have to suffer — how do we bear it with faith?

This week features readings from the book of Job, so it's a good time to ask that question.

An important feature of Job's story is unmerited suffering. He suffered the loss of oxen, sheep, camels and children — all in one day. His friends asked what sin he had committed to deserve this punishment. Job insisted — truthfully — that he had committed no sin.

In the cont...

September 22, 2016

Paul wrote in the letter to the Galatians, "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me." Perhaps this passage shows how the readings for the 27th Sunday in Ordinary Time are interconnected. These readings tell us there is something within us that we perceive ever so dimly.

These readings throw the light of faith on our intuitions. We see this expressed so well in the selection from Habakkuk. Habakkuk...

September 22, 2016

Preparing to receive Jesus' Body and Blood starts at home — well before Mass. The Church teaches that Catholics should abstain from food or drink, except water, for one hour prior to receiving Communion. As we long for a drink or something to munch on while waiting for Mass, we should be reminded of our spiritual hunger to receive Jesus into our souls.

Our preparation continues at church, where we spend a few minutes in silent prayer, a...

September 15, 2016

I haven't resolved every issue regarding the upcoming election, nor do I intend to. My intention is to help us form our consciences and frame our conversations as we prepare to vote.

In addition to the immediate issue of this election, however, I'd like to raise our eyes to a broader horizon for a moment.

When we do so, I return to one of my main questions: Can't a voting bloc of 25 percent of the nation create a political landsc...

September 15, 2016

No he resuelto cada tema en relación con la próxima elección, ni tampoco lo pretendo. Mi intención es ayudarlos en la formación de nuestra conciencia y dar forma a nuestras conversaciones a medida que nos preparamos para votar.

Además de los temas inmediatos de esta elección, me gustaría que elevaran sus ojos por un momento hacia un horizonte más amplio.

Cuando hacemos esto, regreso a una de mis principales preguntas. ¿No puede u...

September 15, 2016

Since we are a people covenanted to the Lord, the readings for the 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time spell out the everlasting consequences of our everyday decisions, whether good or bad.

In the first reading, the Lord clearly speaks to His chosen people, "Woe to the complacent in Zion! Lying upon beds of ivory, stretched comfortably on their couches, they eat lambs taken from the flock, and calves from the stall!"

The Lord isn't cond...

September 15, 2016

Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman began life as a High Church Anglican. At Oxford, he became a leader within the Oxford Movement, which emphasized the Catholic elements of the Church of England to help reform it. Through his studies in this movement, particularly of the Church Fathers, he converted to Catholicism, eventually becoming a cardinal.

But who were these people that led him to convert? Obviously, by the name, they were the ea...

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson
September 8, 2016

Sometimes, when we consider all the election issues and give each its proper weight, we're left with a dilemma. What if one candidate is unacceptable on a set of issues that are non-negotiable for a Catholic voter, while the other candidate is unacceptable on a set of issues that a Catholic voter can't ignore? What should we do then?

First, we should pray. We should pray for the guidance of the Holy Spirit in our discernment. We should...

FRENTE A LA CRUZ | El dilema de escoger entre candidatos imperfectos
September 8, 2016

Algunas veces, cuando consideramos todos los temas de la elección y le damos a cada uno su propio peso, se nos presenta un dilema. ¿Qué pasa si uno de los candidatos es inaceptable en un grupo de temas que son no negociables para los votantes católicos, mientras que el otro candidato es inaceptable en un grupo de temas que un votante católico no puede ignorar? Entonces, ¿Qué debemos hacer?

Lo primero, debemos orar. Debemos orar para ped...

Bishop Robert J. Hermann
September 8, 2016

'This is good and pleasing to God, our savior, who wills everyone to be saved and to come to knowledge of the truth.' 

The readings for the 25th Sunday in Ordinary time focus on the issue: "How do we negotiate our future with God when we realize that our weaknesses have tripped us up?"

In the first reading, God sends Amos, a prophet from the southern kingdom, to the northern kingd...

Father John Mayo
September 8, 2016

Before His ascension, Jesus told His apostles, "'Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature'" (Mark 16:15). While these words were meant for the whole Church, the apostles were the first to embrace them. They traveled, sometimes great distances, to preach the Gospel. All but one of the apostles were martyred for their belief in Christ and proclaiming Him to others.

With that, let us look at what the apostles did a...

September 1, 2016

Many issues confront us in this election. Abortion and euthanasia. Immigration and national security. The list goes on.

The issues don't carry the same weight. In one sense that means different issues appeal to different people. But is there an objective scale of values to weigh the issues? How do we consider all the issues, while giving each issue its proper weight?

The U.S. Catholic bishops provide guidance in a document issued...

September 1, 2016

Muchos temas nos confrontan en esta elección. Aborto y eutanasia, inmigración y seguridad nacional. Y la lista continúa.

Los temas no tienen el mismo peso. En cierto modo esto significa que diferentes temas atraen a diferentes personas. Pero, ¿existe una escala objetiva de valores para evaluar estos temas? ¿Cómo considerar todos los temas dándole a cada uno el peso adecuado?

Los obispos de la Iglesia Católica nos dan orientación...