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.

July 22, 2016

As a citizen of this country, as a Catholic Priest and Bishop, and as an African-American, I am deeply distressed by the recent violent eruptions of the racial divide in the United States. Last week, I served as the Catholic Chaplain during Week Three of the nine-week summer session at the historic Chautauqua Institution. Moral Leadership in Action was the week's theme. There could not have been a more urgent topic considering the presidential...

Teak Phillips
July 21, 2016

Over the next few months, our emotions may be on edge. At least through the general election November 8, we'll be bombarded with political discourse that challenges our notion of good and tests our patience. We've come to understand this as a part of American politics, but it certainly feels like it gets worse every four years.

Perhaps it is worse. Or perhaps it feels more intense because it comes at us from many directions, seemingly a...

July 14, 2016

As the summer continues, many of us are engaging in meaningful conversations about life, death and hopeful expectations with friends, colleagues and family members. Already, the tone and mood of our sharing seems to disclose an uneasiness at the seemingly overwhelming brokenness and violence unfolding before our eyes. There is plenty of unconscionable behavior in our streets, neighborhoods, cities, nation and world that leave us wanting someth...

July 14, 2016

The dream of playing professional sports often begins early for young athletes. Most of the time that dream goes away as reality sets in as the youngster becomes a teen and turns to a more practical career pursuit.

But for some of the elite young athletes, that dream seems possible following success in high school and then college sports. Some have mastered excellent time-management skills as they focused on sports and academics. Others...

July 7, 2016

A man in mourning visited a grave in The Mount of Olives cemetery. The 3,000 year old burial site overlooks the Kidron Valley (Valley of Jehoshaphat) and contains more than 150,000 graves including King David's son Absalom and the prophets Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi. After the destruction of the Second Temple, the Mount of Olives became a pilgrimage site for lamenting Jews because it had a clear view across the valley and onto the Temple Mo...

July 7, 2016

I've been listening to Lillian Cunningham's "Presidential" podcast, trying to glean insights into our nation's earliest leaders. With this month sure to contain fireworks — from the 4th of July to the Republican and Democratic conventions — it feels quieting and introspective to cast my mind back to our first presidents.

In her podcast on George Washington, Cunningham interviewed Julie Miller, a Library of Congress historian. She emphas...

June 23, 2016

The headline referred to the recent Virtue-Based Restorative Discipline Summer Institute as a "Counter Bullying Workshop." The accompanying news release described VBRD as "a Catholic response to bullying," but that was the only reference to "bullying" in its eight-paragraphs.

Interestingly, not one session of the fourth annual Summer Institute had "bullying" in its title. In fact, the word rarely came up at Cardinal Rigali Center in the...

June 23, 2016

My family's celebration of Father's Day was nice. Pizza and wings for dinner with my dad, my daughter Jessica, my son Josh and my two grandsons. One of those grandsons, 8-year-old Colin, treated me in a special way with a triple and home run in his ballgame Sunday evening. I also received a greeting card with Snoopy on the front. What more does a man need?

I don't really need gifts, not for any holiday. The last thing I crave is more st...

June 23, 2016

As we prepare to celebrate the 240th birthday of our beloved United States of America, we also celebrate the Fortnight for Freedom from June 21-July 4, a time for us to promote the importance of religious liberty — our "first freedom."

I'm a history buff. Among of my favorite periods is the Colonial and Revolutionary history of America. I have visited many significant sites — Boston, New York, Mount Vernon, Monticello and Yorktown. Rece...

June 16, 2016

In the aftermath of the horrific mass shooting June 12 at a nightclub in Orlando, Fla., we struggle to make sense of such violence, destruction, hate and suffering.

The events go against everything we uphold as community values. A statement issued by the Vatican on behalf of Pope Francis referred to the Orlando attack as "terrible and absurd violence." It's almost incomprehensible that a country that has had as many mass shootings as th...

June 16, 2016

Baseball is, in my opinion, the most Catholic of the sports on which we lavish such attention and passion.

Because it's played without a clock, baseball is like the liturgy: a foretaste of the time-beyond-time, which is God's time, which is eternity. Baseball is also spatially eschatological or infinite: in theory, a baseball field could extend forever — as center field in New York's old Polo Grounds seemed to do, except when patrolled...

June 16, 2016

This year, the summer brings with it a highly publicized election season. Many of us have been attentive to various media wanting to know the latest polls, voting results, talk-show analysis, political spins and creative speculations. Even political neophytes can't escape the barrage of images, words and symbols that bespeak of the urgency and angst surrounding this year's presidential election.

While — culturally speaking — it may not...

June 16, 2016

Missouri Primaries

I want to point out that in the edition of June 13-19, the section "Around #CATHOLICSTL" is seriously incorrect when it declares: Although the Missouri primaries are over."

August 2 is the primary election for many state offices, including governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general and treasurer; county offices, such as sheriff and circuit attorney; and every congress...

June 9, 2016

The merits of payday loans — predatory lending as some would call it — has been debated for more than a decade as the storefront instant-lending sites have mushroomed.

The issue touches us because Catholic social teaching calls people of faith to care for the most vulnerable in society.

At the Missouri Catholic Conference Annual Assembly in Jefferson City, Mo., a couple years ago, Molly Fleming-Pierre of the Communities Creating...

Christina Capecchi
June 9, 2016

Staci Perry bakes like she lives. She doesn't measure. She works with what's already in the fridge. And she scrapes every last bit out of the bowl.

"I don't do anything fancy," she says, sitting in the kitchen of her century-old farmhouse two miles north of Verdi, a tiny, windswept town by the Minnesota-South Dakota border. "It's very church potluck-ish — bars, brownies, pies, just your home kind of food. If a recipe calls for a candy t...

Joseph Kenny
June 9, 2016

High school baseball coaches do a lot more than fill out a starting lineup and deal with strategy, especially when it comes to having talented players.

Playing for a coach who had success as a pitcher means a lot to St. John Vianney's Luke Mann.

Mann had an outstanding year in 2016. Among his statistical highlights was posting a school- record 0.43 earned run average.

"He gives me the tools of the trade to be successful,"...

Bishop Edward M. Rice celebrated benediction and adoration at the Catholic Women for Christ Conference earlier this year.
May 26, 2016

When a representative of the Vatican called him last month to tell him about his appointment as the bishop of the Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, Bishop Edward M. Rice was praying Evening Prayer at Holy Redeemer Church, where he lives. Without hesitation, he said "yes" to the appointment.

His example of saying "yes" is one we all should emulate.

The prologue of the Catechism of the Catholic Church states that those who, wi...

May 19, 2016

They just can't wait to share their faith: The men and women in the Lay Formation Program of the Archdiocese of St. Louis have spent three years learning about the treasures of Church teaching and God's love.

Many of them are putting that training to use in various roles in parishes of the archdiocese, working in partnership with parish pastors. People have come from all parts of the archdiocese to take part in the three-year, tuition-f...