U.S. Catholic

This magazine publishes news, opinions and reviews about issues concerning the everyday lives of Catholics.

Articles from Vol. 75, No. 10, October

Act II: A Theater Project Helps Incarcerated Women Find Their Voice on Stage and a Second Chance in Life
Regret. Loneliness. Anger. Hope. Freedom. When incarcerated women sit down to write about their lives, these are the words they use. In Chicago a group called the Persephone Project helps these women find the words to tell their stories through theater...
Born in the U.S.A.: American Birthright Citizenship Is Downright Constitutional
THE BIRTHER MOVEMENT IS AT IT AGAIN. NO, I'M NOT talking about the fringe group that insists, in defiance of all evidence to the contrary, that President Barack Obama is not a native-born citizen. The birther movement I'm talking about is fixed...
Does the Church Still Ban Books?
What do Jean Paul Sartre, Voltaire, Immanuel Kant, John Milton, and Galileo have in common? Required reading for university freshmen? Maybe. These esteemed writers, philosophers, and scientists also all had works banned by the Catholic Church on its...
Eat, Pay, Work: How We Meet Our Basic Needs Could Be the Building Blocks of Truly Human Life
A MEAL, A JOB, AND A PAYCHECK SEEM LIKE MUNDANE places to begin a meditation on what it means to be human. Still, Jesus taught us about the reign of God by showing us how to throw--and behave at--a banquet. Marx, Freud, and Pope John Paul II all agreed...
Feedback
My favorite writer is ... I go back again to reread books and poems by Maya Angelou, the short stories of Flannery O'Connor, and the novels of Isaac B. Singer. Gretta Barnes Petersburg, Va. Carlo Carretto. He is refreshing in his simplicity...
My Room in the Trees
MY ROOM IN THE TREES (The Innocence Mission (Badman, 2010) [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] On the Innocence Mission's most straightforward folk album yet, Karen Peris sings of seasons, of weather (mostly rain), of Monday mornings, of driving, and of...
Put in a Good Word: If a Eulogy Sounds to Good to Be True, It Probably Is. Putting on Rose-Colored Glasses to Look at a Loved One's Life, However, Might Be Just What We Need for Resolution
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Recently I attended the wake and funeral for the father of a friend. At the wake, the children--now all middle-aged--took turns talking about their dad. They spoke with affection about his love for their mother and his devout...
Read into It: Books Have a Special Way of Opening Our Imaginations to Moments of Grace in Life
Catholic are a sacramental people. We see signs of the presence of God around us in every moment of our lives. We know, of course, that God is greater than we can imagine and beyond all that we can touch, but we are also convinced that creation, from...
Shelf Life
My book club just became a "book" club; actually, it's been almost a year since everyone lugged a bound stack of paper to our monthly meeting. Instead, some come with gadgets--Amazon's Kindle, Apple's iPad--with entire libraries in their megabytes....
She's Nobody: Remembering Emily Dickinson
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Blessed among women, Robert Ellsberg calls her in his book of the same name. Here Emily Dickinson appears with other spiritual giants, sharing Teresa of Avila's mysticism, her soul in white heat; Joan of Arc's courageous...
Southern Misfit: Flannery O'Connor's Tales May Be Unusual, but It's Precisely Their Dark, Strange Nature That Points to God's Grace
THIRTY YEARS AGO, THE FINE THEOLOGIAN John Shea, teaching a course on redemption, introduced me to Flannery O'Connor's fiction. I found her stories violent, shocking, funny, and awfully readable--but they left me, as a young student without a great...
The Gospel Truth: Though the Evangelists Shouldn't Be Confused with Reporters, They've Left Clues to the Facts Behind Our Biblical Faith
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] JESUS HAS HIS NORMALLY CROWDED ITINERARY THIS MONTH. In our Sunday readings he'll be lecturing his disciples on why they don't need more faith--they just need faith. Then he'll be chased by 10 lepers crying out for a miracle....
The Need for Closure: Parishes Should Have an Exit Strategy before Shutting Their Doors
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] The day after their farewell Mass, parishioners of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini Church were locked out. Archdiocesan officials had changed the locks days ahead of schedule. So they walked around the building in Scituate,...
This Parish Becomes You: You Can Try a Couple on for Size, but Nothing Beats a Comfortable Fit
HOW DO YOU KNOW WHEN IT'S TIME TO JOIN OR change parishes? In my parents' generation, you joined the nearest parish as soon as you moved into an area and stayed there until you moved out (or died). It's a more fluid situation today. I know more...
Used Books: U.S. Catholic Readers' Favorite Books Are Tattered and Torn with Love
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] BOOKSMART. URBANDICTIONARY.COM DEFINES IT AS "1. A very smart person who bases his or her arguments on facts from books. 2. To have brains." U.S. CATHOLIC readers might just be considered booksmart; the majority say they...
Who Wants to Be a Bible Scholar
Are you a biblical newbie or an exegetical expert? Take our quiz to find out. You may even phone a friend if you get stuck--but only once. You know the Bible backward and forward, don't you? Sure you do. You hear it read every weekend in church....
Will the Center Hold? the Church as We Know It Won't Last If Its Broad Middle Begins to Shrink
POP CULTURE JOURNALISTS HAD THE BRASS RING of celebrity stories dropped on them in August when author Anne Rice, grande dame of the current vampire entertainment empire, announced that, 10 years after her return to the Roman Catholic faith of her childhood,...