U.S. Catholic

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

Articles from Vol. 74, No. 8, August

Blowin' in the Wind: Prayer Flags Remind Us of the Way Blessings Make Their Way around the World
When we reached the beach this morning, I saw that a single pole with five Tibetan prayer flags had been placed in the water. Someone puts these flags up on the beach from time to time, sometimes in the sand, sometimes in the water. They are always...
Confessions of a Repeat Offender: Back for Another Session on the Confessional, a Young Woman Realizes That Falling Is Part of the Journey
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Father Don leans forward in his chair. The air of the confessional is quiet, cool, and light. The small Polish priest is in all-black attire, save for the strip of white collar at his throat. He offers his hand to me. I...
Doctor's Orders: To Cure the Maladies of Both the Medieval Church and Spiritual Seekers Today, Doctor of the Church Catherine of Siena Prescribes Meditating on Christ's Passion
I FIRST MET CATERINA BENINCASA, BETTER known as St. Catherine of Siena, during a trip to her hometown in Italy. I was a college student trying to figure out how to become Catholic and still have a good relationship with my non-Christian family....
Eat Up and Go: A Morsel of Heavenly Bread May Be Just What We Need for the Long Road Ahead
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] LIFE IS HARD. BUT SOME YEARS ARE HARDER THAN OTHers, and this one has been a stunner for a lot of us. Many have bled money in the economic whirlwind. Others have lost jobs, homes, and the security of their retirement years....
Feeding the Hunger: Offering Christ's Body and Blood to Fellow Parishioners Helps This Catholic Find a Fuller Communion
"THE EYES HAVE IT!" SPELLED A BIT DIFFERENTLY, this phrase is a standard for reporting a positive outcome of a debate. In the act of distributing the Holy Eucharist, it means something different: that there has been a human connection as the true presence...
Incoming Missal: Get Ready for Changes to Your Sunday Mass
When Father Jeff Keyes arrived at St. Edward's Parish in the summer of 2004, he found a Thriving, multiethnic parish of 5,400 families on the eastern side of the San Francisco Bay. Keyes' religious order, the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, had...
Let's Spend a Life Together: Sure You Love Your Spouse, but You Have to like Each Other, Too
RECENTLY MY HUSBAND, BILL, AND I WERE ON A rare getaway weekend together. On Saturday morning after a leisurely breakfast--where I was not asked to cut anyone's waffles--we went for a walk and stopped at a rummage sale. The 60-something lady who was...
Mass Movements
I'm an occasional church shopper--a window shopper really--sampling Masses here and there, though never with the intention of buying. A recent trip took me to a brand new church, a gigantic place in a wealthy suburb, though it looked like it could...
Non-Parishable Goods: The Value of a Faith Community Can't Be Crunched on a Balance Sheet
THIRTEEN IN MIAMI, 52 IN CLEVELAND, 33 IN ALBANY, New York. No, these aren't Chrysler dealerships or Starbucks franchises closing due to the recession but parishes that will be shuttered this year in three dioceses. The diocesan announcements do, however,...
Secret, Profane & Sugarcane
SECRET, PROFANE & SUGARCANE Elvis Costello (Hear Music, 2009) [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Elvis Costello goes bluegrass--that's the short take on Secret, Profane & Sugarcane. But this is not a novelty record. Working with fiber-producer,...
Senior Moments: The Spiritual Side of Getting Older
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] The signs are plentiful. You begin to pay attention to those drug ads on the evening newscasts promising relief from ailments you didn't even know existed. The first snows of winter used to beckon with joy; now they are seen...
Sensitivity Training: Catholics Need to Learn More about Their Jewish Brothers and Sisters, Rabbi Ruth Langer Says, So They Don't Make the Same Mistakes All over Again. the Editors Interview Rabbi Ruth Langer
In one of her Boston College courses, Rabbi Ruth Langer traces anti-Judaism through Christian texts. "My students are shocked to hear the kind of language that appears in earlier texts," says Langer, associate professor of Jewish studies and the associate...
The Reader
THE READER Directed by Stephen Daldry (The Weinstein Co., 2008) [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] In traditional coming-of-age tales, sexuality opens up new worlds for a young man, and the first affair helps transform him from a child to a man. But in...
Two Rites Make a Wrong: We Are One Church and We Need Just One Mass, This Catholic Argues-Even If That One Mass Is Celebrated in Any Number of Languages
AT ONE END OF THE ARCHDIOCESE WHERE I LIVE, A MASS is held in a gymnasium every Sunday, and a group of lively folk musicians accompany the assembly through a relaxed and informal liturgy. The mood reflects the music. Because it's a gym, children seem...
What Happens at the End of the Book? E-Books Will Change the Way We Read, but the Digital Future of Fiction Remains Unclear
OPRAH, THE QUEEN OF BOOK CLUBS, HAS BLESSED the Kindle, Amazon's new and recently improved e-book reader, signaling that we may be changing the way we take in fiction and non-fiction alike. The Web has already changed the way most young people read...
Whose Child Is This? "Banning" Mexico City's Street Kids Only Moves Their Plight from Sight
IF YOU HAVE EVER VISITED MEXICO CITY YOU MAY HAVE enjoyed their antics as part of the federal district's colorful backdrop. Maybe you can spot them edging out from the corner of your vacation photos: the late-night Chiclets salesmen, the street jugglers...
Why Are Priests Celibate?
Celibacy is one of the most widely recognized it is well known, celibacy itself is often misunderstood. Technically, celibacy is the commitment not to marry. In the Latin (Roman) Catholic Church, it is a prerequisite for ordination to the priesthood....