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  • Handling the holidays when you’re hurting

    Many people are filled with joyful anticipation and festive good cheer at this time of the year. But some are filled with anxiety and dread, and wish to get the holidays over with as quickly as possible.
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  • Destroying my freedom – in the name of freedom?

    In an August 2015 column in The Washington Post, George F. Will argued in favor of physician-assisted suicide, summing up his perspective this way: “There is nobility in … affirming at the end the distinctive human dignity of autonomous choice.”
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  • Paul VI, prophet

    This coming July, we will mark the 50th anniversary of Pope Paul VI’s deeply controversial encyclical letter “Humanae Vitae.”
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  • What kind of King do you believe in?

    What kind of King do you believe in? Do you sometimes believe that Jesus is a thief who is in the business of stealing things from you and asking you to give things up? That he is always asking you to suffer and sacrifice? That he is depriving you of things you need or deserve to have and enjoy? That he’s all about making your life miserable, hard, and dull?
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  • Making the most of our gifts

    Meditation on the Last Things is the spirituality of the Church’s Liturgy in the month of November. In the liturgical year’s final month, we are confronted by the sometimes-stark reality of the Last Things: That we will die one day, that this death will be followed by our particular judgment by Jesus Christ, and that each human person will be forever be either in heaven or in hell.
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  • Paralysis, exasperation and helplessness as prayer

    Several years ago I received an email that literally stopped my breath. A man who had been for many years an intellectual and faith mentor to me, a man whom I thoroughly trusted, and a man with whom I had developed a life-giving friendship, had killed both his wife and himself in a murder-suicide.
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  • As the Bard might say….

    Four centuries after his death, Shakespeare remains a peerless playwright because of his remarkable insight into the human condition.
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  • St. Catherine’s papal correction

    Father Catoir appears to take offense at recent criticisms of Pope Francis, citing the now-popular, but quoted out of context, statement of Francis: “Who am I to judge?”
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  • Catholic Radio nourishes the faith

    In support of Catholic Radio, I can speak for myself and have heard from many others that listening to Catholic Radio has helped us learn much about the Catholic faith including what the Catholic Church actually teaches, how to examine these teachings and how to defend these teachings.
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  • Keep peace during holiday gatherings

    The holiday season is a hectic time for many people, due to the preparations and festivities that typically take place. Staying sane, not to mention enjoying this time of the year, is even more of a challenge for those who don’t get along well with their extended family.
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  • ‘Early Days’ and California history

    There are two issues here as I see it. On the one hand, there is the history of the Spanish missions in California. For anyone who went to a Catholic school in the 1950s, that history was seen through rose-colored glasses.
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  • Marriage in San Francisco

    How upsetting to read in “Culture Project brings virtue into the center for Catholic dating – and life” (Oct. 19) that one woman got this advice from a priest:
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  • George Weigel and papal memory

    Here is a suggestion to George Weigel. Why not leave the memory of John Paul II be as a saint and forget his mistakes?
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  • Kathleen Dowling Singh, RIP

    No community should botch its deaths. That’s a wise statement from Mircea Eliade and apropos in the face of the death two weeks ago of Kathleen Dowling Singh.
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  • The least religious generation in US history

    Jean Twenge’s book “ iGen” is one of the most fascinating – and depressing – texts I’ve read in the past decade.
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  • The kingdom of heaven will be like …

    Since the kingdom of God is beyond human comprehension, Jesus’ parables each offer a dimension of the kingdom to help us understand it.
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  • Murderers’ row, Soviet-style

    One hundred years ago, on Nov. 7, 1917, Lenin and his Bolshevik party expropriated the chaotic Russian people’s revolution that had begun eight months earlier, setting in motion modernity’s first experiment in totalitarianism.
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  • Private conscience and the church

    The late Archbishop Fulton Sheen explained that there are two kinds of truths: “Outer truths, which we master, like the distance of the sun from the earth; and inner truths, which master us; for example: God is merciful to the penitent. Inner truths affect a person’s destiny, like a vocational calling; they are matters of conscience.”
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  • No baby but still giving thanks

    Even before she was married, Emily Stimpson Chapman asked for baby prayers.
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  • When is it a sin to make a referral?

    During World War II, if a contractor had been asked to construct a building knowing that it would serve as a gas chamber in Auschwitz, it goes without saying that he ought not agree to do it.
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