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.

February 14, 2002

Society is increasingly more aware of the danger and damage of divorce. After decades of assertions by psychologists and sociologists alike that there are benefits to divorce, a vocal minority is calling that assertion into question. Studies in both the United States and in Europe are revealing that divorce, even in difficult situations, does not benefit children, spouses or society.

Children who are victims of divorce...

February 14, 2002

"Let us pray."

Mother Teresa of Calcutta constantly used these or similar words when she spoke, or wrote them on the top of cards and in letters to friends, supporters and others. Mother Teresa knew, and she never ceased reminding herself and everyone else, that the heart of her life was prayer. As she served others - from Calcutta to St. Louis and around the world - she served in faith and love for Jesus Christ.

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February 8, 2002

Why join a prayer group?

With Lent only days away, many parishes are currently encouraging parishioners to join small prayer groups that will meet in homes during the Lenten season. Some people may take the plunge because they view the effort as a new twist on the familiar practice of giving up something for Lent. In this case, they would give up some of their time, a precious commodity today. Others will incorporate t...

February 7, 2002

At the beginning of the third millennium the Catholic Church stands in an often lonely position because of its defense of life at all stages, its commitment to the dignity of married love and its necessary relation to procreation, and its untiring dedication to the marginalized within all societies. There is no other institution in society where these stands are more desperately needed than in health care and medical research institutions thro...

February 7, 2002

In the mid-1990s a couple of scientists discovered the body of a 14-year-old girl frozen to the ground some 20,700 feet high up in the Andes Mountains. Ash from a nearby volcano had accelerated the snowmelt on the mountaintop exposing the corpse. The two chiseled the body out of the ice and transported it to Catholic University in Peru where research was performed.
Scientific testing and clues from the clothing that covered the body reve...

February 5, 2002

This winter, three different local theater companies are presenting three different plays that, either affectionately or combatively, take shots at the Catholic Church by utilizing lead characters who are nuns. None of the three would count as especially positive ways to recognize the World Day for Consecrated Life, to be celebrated locally on Feb. 2.

One show is Late Nite Catechism. In the midst of a long run at a loc...

January 24, 2002

Today we highlight the outstanding work of the Catholic schools of the Archdiocese of St. Louis. Ours is one of the strongest school systems in the United States, public or private, and this is so for a number of reasons, starting with the rich heritage of faith that has so long characterized this historic archdiocese. The Catholic schools here lead the way in many areas because our parents, teachers and parishioners underst...

January 24, 2002

Roe vs. Wade is 29 years old - older than most who are joining the pro-life movement today. Yet even among those who know that it was a bad decision, how many of us really know what it said? It's appropriate, at this time of year, to review its shaky foundation.

The decision, drafted by Justice Harry Blackmun, began by presenting a dubious historical account of abortion. It was important for the court to establish...

January 17, 2002

This weekend the archdiocese will mark the anniversary of the life-shattering decision of the U.S. Supreme Court, Roe vs. Wade, which with its companion, Doe vs. Bolton, has led to the open-door policy that we Americans have on abortion. In the name of the U.S. Constitution these decisions have enshrined the privacy rights spawned by the court's reasoning in Griswold vs. Connecticut and similar decisions which outlawed state...

January 17, 2002

National holidays are so often appreciated for the time off from work that their origin and purpose is neglected. Whether the nation is celebrating her birthday or remembering her important presidents, the focus is often on the freedom of the day and less so a reflection on why the nation has offered these holidays to us.

This dynamic is true of the national holiday celebrating the life and accomplishment of Dr. Mar...

January 10, 2002

Upon being elected president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Bishop Wilton Gregory said that a serious challenge facing the Catholic Church in America was the poor state of catechetics among the faithful. One pivotal area where this is especially true is in our understanding of the nature of the male priesthood and its centrality to the mission of the Church.

In 1992, Pope John Paul II wrote in his aposto...

January 10, 2002

The encounter with the Divine Word Jesus Christ that we have celebrated this Christmas season is a template for the work of our Catholic newspaper, whose mission includes both informing and forming - helping Catholics to both understand the world and to fulfill their role in it. The goal of the St. Louis Review is to reflect on the events of the world through the eyes of faith and the perspective of Roman Catholic tradition....

January 10, 2002

U. S. News & World Report recently posed the question: "Are Americans undergoing a spiritual revival?" Maybe, the magazine says, because sales of Christian rock and gospel music are increasing significantly and 96 percent of Americans say they believe in God. On the other hand, church membership is declining, and more than half of Americans tell pollsters that religion's influence on society is diminishing. So maybe n...

December 19, 2001

In the pagan world in which our Savior was born, the winter solstice was the background for a great festival, Natale solis invicti (the rebirth of the unconquered sun). Each year people noted that as winter was coming the days grew shorter. It seemed to them that the sun god was waning, but after the shortest day of the year, the days began to lengthen once again.

There was a very early tradition that this was the ap...

December 13, 2001

Today's day of fasting and prayer is a faith-filled and practical way to unite ourselves in solidarity with those who are suffering greatly as this year draws to a close. The Holy Father has explicitly drawn our attention to the thousands of innocent victims of Sept. 11, as well as the many who have been forced to abandon their homes - the refugees of Afghanistan, and those at risk in the continuing conflicts of the Holy Lan...

December 13, 2001

With the outpouring of giving by the American people since our terrorist attack, charitable giving has taken some hard hits with the criticism of not delivering the goods to the victims for whom they were intended. We all understand that in such a massive crisis there is difficulty in determining exactly who the true victims are, since there are always some who will claim need when there is none. However, there does seem to...

December 6, 2001

Bishop Michael J. Sheridan expressed characteristic trust and enthusiasm this week for the challenges of becoming a pastor to God's people in the Diocese of Colorado Springs. He will soon leave his lifelong home to assist Bishop Richard Hanifen, who became the first bishop of Colorado Springs when Pope John Paul II established the diocese in 1984. As coadjutor, Bishop Sheridan is in line to take over the leadership of the yo...

December 6, 2001

Over the past decade many articles in legal, ethical and medical journals have argued for a new concept in health care and in treatment decisions called "medical futility." At least a couple of Catholic health-care systems have involved themselves at the forefront of the implementation of these dubious medical futility policies. Part of the problem lies in the lack of agreement about what "medical futility" actually means....