Opinion

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

November 22, 2017

As Christmas nears, we get inundated with messages emphasizing the materialism of Christmas. There's so much to do. It's easy to succumb and begin to dread what's ahead.

The time before Christmas — Advent — should be filled with joy in anticipation of what is coming. Beginning the Church's liturgical year, Advent is the season encompassing the four Sundays leading up to the celebration of Christmas. This time of preparation directs our...

Mike Eisenbath
November 22, 2017

A look in the mirror often makes me wonder whose face is there. That guy has mostly gray hair, somewhat weather-worn skin and a white beard. It's a serious face with eyes peering somewhere beyond, appearing to be reflecting on something only mirror man might understand.

"He looks a lot older than me," I think. "Probably 50s, maybe getting close to 60. He's probably seen a lot in his life. I'll bet I could learn a lot from that guy."

...
Tim Phillips, a parishioner at St. Paul in St. Paul, harvested this 31-point buck on the opening of the Missouri firearms season. While he will mount the head, he donated the meat to a state charity that distributes it to food pantries.
November 22, 2017

When Tim Phillips harvested the deer of a lifetime, he knew two things: The organic, high-protein meat would go to charity; the 31-point antlers would reside on his wall.

Phillips had been hunting this deer for years. It had been documented by remote trail cameras since 2012. He saw it opening day of the 2014 firearms season, but had to vacate his stand because a friend was getting married that day. A buddy had named the deer "Walter."...

November 17, 2017

Throughout her life, Sister Mary Antona Ebo was known for standing for justice and equality for all.

With her death Nov. 11, there are many who desire to keep her spirit alive. The African-American woman religious, who marched in Selma, Ala., in 1965 for civil rights, told the crowd then that, "I'm here because I'm a Negro, a nun, a Catholic, and because I want to bear witness."

Sister Antona was a courageous witness beyond Selma...

November 17, 2017

In the current scientific and digital culture, working with one's hands or learning to play with mechanical systems and structures seems to be a thing of the past. We're more adept at engaging digital and virtual realities, yet our familiarity with physical labor often goes lacking.

Some may recall a family member or acquaintance whose mechanical abilities were impressive. He or she would easily break down and rebuild something that nee...

November 17, 2017

Do you struggle with packaging?

In opening a fresh box containing an over-the-counter pain reliever, I now need a double dose because of the discomfort caused by opening the bottle.

My neighbors probably think I ordered all of my Christmas gifts in one purchase because of the huge cardboard shipping "crate" blocking my front door — but all I did was order a few, small items from an online retailer.

And oh, the puzzle of pl...

November 10, 2017

Sometimes it takes just one case to blow the lid off a long-fermenting scandal.

Hollywood has seen the opening of a scandal of sexual abuse and cover-ups, with the primary impetus being the recent revelations concerning movie executive Harvey Weinstein, one of the film industry's most powerful men.

Weinstein's abuse of young women in the film industry, ranging from indecent exposure to alleged rape, are shocking, as is the fact t...

November 10, 2017

Have faith, St. Louis sports fans. The Houston Astros baseball team began in 1962, and it took them 55 years to win the World Series. That brings hope for the St. Louis Blues, which became an NHL franchise in 1967.

Despite the lack of a Stanley Cup championship, the Blues have missed the playoffs only eight times and have a plethora of highlights throughout their 50 seasons.

Dan O'Neill, a St. Margaret Mary Alacoque parishioner,...

November 10, 2017

This season sparkles with joy. We open our homes to family and friends, greeting each other at the doors under twinkling lights.

But a small moment often catches in our throat. We set one less place for Thanksgiving dinner. Or we cross a name off this year's Christmas list.

Wherever we gather around holiday tables this year, there will be holes left by those who aren't there. Relatives who have died. Loved ones lost to addiction....

November 3, 2017

Despite its countless benefits in advancing learning and global communication, the internet has had its pitfalls. The most heinous has been the growth of online child sexual exploitation.

Children make up more than one-quarter of the 3.2 billion internet users, according to WePROTECT Global Alliance, and they are the most vulnerable to new forms of harm and abuse.

One recent study, led by Statistics Canada in 2016, showed child p...

November 3, 2017

Putting complete trust in God is one of the characteristics of living a stewardship lifestyle. It means being generous with all of our gifts; not just one or two things we pick and choose.

If we're honest with ourselves, when it comes to sharing, many pick the path of least resistance, the path that causes the least discomfort. We tend to share from our surplus.

Many of us know people who go to daily Mass and regularly attend par...

November 3, 2017

Even before she was married, Emily Stimpson Chapman asked for baby prayers.

"I'd be in an antique store buying little trinkets for the wedding decorations, and I would be asking strangers: 'Pray that we have a baby!'" she said.

The Pittsburgh-based Catholic writer had long yearned to enter into motherhood, so when the love of her life got down on bended knee, she began dispensing prayer requests. She was 40, and math was not on h...

October 27, 2017

In "The Joy of the Gospel," Pope Francis urges people to reach out to the peripheries. Reflecting on his writings, Sister Constance Veit, director of communications for the Little Sisters of the Poor, stated that the elderly can hardly be a periphery in the Church since they often disproportionately fill the pews of our Catholic churches and serve in large numbers in its ministries.

But a deeper look at the situation of the elderly in A...

October 27, 2017

Domestic violence is a serious problem affecting millions of people throughout our country. Domestic violence is a pattern of behavior used by one person to maintain power and control over another within an intimate relationship. It turns a loving relationship into one of violence, fear and control.

The Centers for Disease Control reports one in four women and one in seven men in the U.S. reported suffering severe physical violence. Tra...

October 26, 2017

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.

No doubt, any mod...

October 20, 2017

We can be a people of hope, Archbishop Robert J. Carlson writes in a reflection on Pope Francis exhortation "The Joy of the Gospel" in this issue of the Review.

It's a welcome message today. We hear about killings in the streets, terrorism, politicians shouting at each other, the feverish pursuit of frivolous pleasures and unabashed consumerism. Even sports fails us sometimes when we read about out-of-control and "me-first" players, coa...

October 20, 2017

As a college student, I spend much of my time deliberating the great questions of our day, not least among them: the limp salad or the pizza? Shredded carrots and dressing could spruce up the former; the latter's grease I could dab off.

But increasingly, the minimal effort required to render the inedible appealing is daunting enough that I choose not to eat at all. It's a pathetic defeat. I'm not blind to the privilege of a cafeteria at...

October 20, 2017

At a Steubenville Conference not too long ago, Life Teen's Emily Wilson told hundreds of young people that we are all hungry and thirsty for more than what the world has to offer.

At a certain time in our lives, we realize something is missing, so we start looking, searching, yearning. Wilson talked about how often we go around trying to find solutions for this thirst, trying to fill it with vanity, material possessions, social status,...