U.S. Catholic

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

Articles from Vol. 71, No. 5, May

Choose Wisely
Sad news came our way as we were preparing this issue. Tom Fox, a devoted 54-year-old father of two from Virginia who loved music and cooking and had worked at a Quaker camp for youth, was found dead in Baghdad on March 10. Fox, you'll remember,...
Code Controversy Continued
How many people read books that are made into movies? People flocked to see Brokeback Mountain (Focus Features), but I've only met a handful of people who read the story written by Annie Proulx that gave rise to this film. And that's only a short...
Crisis Management: Working to Make the Church Safe from Sex Abuse
Five years ago I was asked to teach a religion class at a local Catholic high school. The department head and assistant principal who hired me was a respected, personable priest. When I would stop by his office, I noticed there was always a female...
Electric Blue Watermelon
Electric blue watermelon The North Mississippi Allstars (ATO Records, 2005) The world of commercial pop music is youth-oriented and globalized, the aim being to synthesize a recording that every 16-year-old on the planet will buy at the same time....
Health Bill Comes Due; Wal-Mart Diagnoses America's Ailing, Out-of-Control Health Care System
CHECK CHUTZPAH IN YOUR NEXT EDITION OF WEBSTER's. It may have to be updated to include a sketch of Wal-Mart CEO H. Lee Scott. Speaking at a recent meeting of the National Governors' Association, Scott informed the assembled dignitaries that government...
Immaculate Perceptions: The One Woman Who Stands above the Rest in Catholic Tradition Has Many Sides and Many Graces-But Mary Also Stands with Us in Our Quest to Be Disciples of Christ
When I was in first grade, I remember asking my teacher, "What does it mean to say Mary is a virgin?" The sister, not wishing to get into a complicated subject with a 6-year-old, wisely replied, "It means she is beautiful in the eyes of God." Though...
Let's Pray, Pay, and Have Our Say; According to Church Teaching, All the People of God Have the Right-Duty, Even-To Share Their Opinions on Matters concerning the Good of the Church
JOHN HENRY NEWMAN WAS ONE OF THE MOST DISTINGUISHED Catholic intellectuals of the 19th century. Already an accomplished theologian within the Church of England, Newman became a figure of national controversy when he decided to become Roman Catholic...
Maternal Instincts: The Pain of Pregnancy Loss Leads One Woman to Discover the True Meaning of Mothering
In the past three years, 11 of my friends have become mothers. Every few months, it seems, there's a baby shower to attend, then an excited e-mail announcing a birth, then a new baby to meet. Holding these babies for the first time, I marvel at their...
My Prolife Protest: Being Prolife Should Mean More Than Just Using Your Car as a Billboard. Instead, Buckle Up and Go Pitch in with the Life That's All Around
We Catholics are supposedly for life, aren't we? "Prolife" as opposed to "pro-death" or "anti-life, " one imagines. Some of us are fond of going to rallies and prayer services for life, even taking buses to Washington, D.C. and our state capitals...
No Substitutions: How One Catholic Couple Has Struggled with the Rules That Exclude People with Food Allergies and Celiac Disease from the Lord's Table
MY WIFE, KATHLEEN, IS CATHOLIC TO THE BONE. She loves the Eucharist with a passion I can't fathom. Yet she now worships with Episcopalians. Why? It started with allergies. First, just a sip from the chalice would burn Kathleen's throat. Sulfite...
Our Hearts of Darkness: Once the Setting for Hollywood Safari Adventures, the War-Torn Reality of Africa Is Finally Getting a Screening
WHEN I WAS A CHILD, films about Africa were adventurous Saturday afternoon safaris into the jungle with Tarzan or treks across the broad savannahs with Allan Quatermain in search of King Solomon's mines. Sitting in the dark with my buddies, we cheered...
Save Me, Jesus! Getting along with Your Born-Again Neighbor
He owns the Springfield Leftorium, a store that sells left-handed products at the mall. Although 60 years old, he looks young and buff for his age and, as a widowed father, is particularly devoted to his young sons, Rod and Todd. Some say his constant...
Sax and the City
IT'S TOUGH TO DISPUTE (THOUGH IT'S BEEN TRIED) THAT among musical instruments horns have a history that scores high on the holiness scale. Trumpets show up frequently in scripture, heralding everything from the Incarnation to the end of time. So what...
Splish, Splash: Water Joins Me Not Only to My Catholic Family but to a Wider Community of Faith as Well
EVERY KID LIKES TO SPLASH IN PUDDLES, AND I WAS NO exception. But not kid to do it at church, and where I grew up, we Catholics had the only church in town where getting splashed counted as Christian devotion. It started, of course, when we walked...
Travel Guide: Turns out the Slogan "Jesus Is My Copilot" Is Just a Paraphrase of the Gospel of John
THE FIRST TIME I SAW THE GRAND CANYON WAS IN THE middle of a blizzard. Fourteen inches of snow had fallen that day as the Hopi Tour bus snaked its way to the Bright Angel Lodge. Only two people were on board: the Hopi driver and me. The other two...
What's the Difference between a Baptism and a Christening?
When I was a child, I knew our noon meal was called "dinner" regardless of the menu. In fact I would snicker when a neighborhood mother summoned her children to "luncheon." It tickled me that some adults didn't seem to know the right word for the...

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