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Guest Columnists

  • Thoughts on physician-assisted suicide

    In college I wrote a medical ethics paper on a play titled “Whose Life Is It Anyway?” That old paper came to mind recently when I learned that the campaign for physician assisted suicide has been gaining momentum.
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  • Pew opportunities

    How do we make church a welcoming place? There are many strategies: introductions, nametags, friendly ushers, donuts after Mass.
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  • Vaccination ethics

    A measles outbreak, the safety of childhood vaccinations, and the role of parental rights in choosing to vaccinate or not to vaccinate is all over the news.
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  • Fidelity learning labs

    Society is awash in infidelity! Lies, cheating and broken promises are the stuff of media headlines and these infidelities grab our attention and rouse our ire.
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  • Finding peace of mind during Lent

    Each time I see a baby sleeping peacefully, it reminds me of peace of mind at its best.
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  • God calls each person and every nation to repent

    “The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the Gospel.”
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  • The priest’s role in the Mass is an act of fatherhood

    I’ve been asked to respond to letters regarding Star of the Sea’s altar server program. I am grateful to Rick DelVecchio and his staff at Catholic San Francisco for providing a fine newspaper in which we can discuss questions with faith in God and respect for each other.
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  • The excitement around the Chinese New Year

    The celebration of each Chinese New Year was always very special for me as I grew up in China. My family, like many other families in our small town, was poor, but we were rich also in that we had many children, six of us in our family.
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  • Today’s Catholic woman

    “I’m so exhausted from trying to be both accomplished and attractive; what does it mean to be really happy and fulfilled as a woman?” says one high school girl. The other notes: “I have over 1,000 Facebook friends, and I’m constantly posting pictures of what I’m doing. So why do I feel so alone and unknown?”
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  • The forgotten plight of Native Americans

    When it comes to the harsh difficulties many Native Americans face every day, the saying “out of sight, out of mind” hits home.
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  • Secular culture, ice cream and institutional identity

    Individual institutions, whether public or private, exist within the larger framework of public or secular culture.
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  • Peanuts, emeralds and family values

    Here’s a story to assist your preparation for the September 2015 World Meeting of Families, which will welcome Pope Francis to Philadelphia and stimulate worldwide discussion of Catholic family values.
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  • Protecting the unborn in a ‘throwaway culture’

    Over 25 times from the top of Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., I have seen a sea of people marching to proclaim the dignity of unborn human life, and how death-dealing abortion sends the unholy message that some human beings are disposable.
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  • Heading out for an encounter with God

    Pope Francis has a knack for taking familiar biblical phrases and turning them around to make a practical, if not necessarily devotional, point.
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  • The gaze of Jesus: Where a vocation begins

    The Dutch master Rembrandt painted many images of Gospel scenes. Maybe you are familiar with the beautiful painting of the “Prodigal Son” in which the father embraces his young troubled son with great compassion and love.
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  • The pope’s message of reform

    Pope Francis made what some would consider harsh statements in his Christmas message to the Roman Curia. He warned the cardinals and archbishops assembled of “the terrorism of gossip,” of being part of a clique that “enslaves all its members, becoming ‘a cancer’ that threatens the harmony of the body and causes so much illness,” and of “spiritual Alzheimer’s,” or forgetting what drew them to the priesthood in the first place.
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