US Catholic Faith in Real Life

U.S. Catholic's Best of 2009

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It's the time of year to reminisce, and looking back at the past 12 issues of U.S. Catholic, we editors are satisfied to say that we have covered a lot, from the liturgy wars to the wars in our streets. We've picked our award nominees for 2009, and below are a few of our favorite things.

Let us know what you think were our best stories from 2009. Also take our poll and vote for the top Catholic news story from the past year.

Best covers





Best Features

Collection Racket: The arresting frequency of parish embezzlement (May) 

Under the Gun: How violence takes its toll on our kids (July)
Carlos Ortiz's photography, the editors agree, is the best art we've had all year. You can see more of his work in the magazine or on his website. We've also nominated the July issue on violence as one of our best issues and best special section.

Incoming Missal: Get ready for changes to your Sunday Mass (August) 


Most useful feature

Deathbed confusion: Struggling with decisions at the end of life (November)


Best interviews

And God created Darwin: Theologian Stephen Pope on evolution (February)

Mass Instruction: Father Robert Taft, S.J. on the history of liturgical reform (December)


Best The Examined Life columns (Bryan Cones)

Above and beyond the call (July)
U.S. women religious deserve better than the nunsense of a Vatican investigation.

Use your inside voice (November)
The high pitch of pro-life advocacy could heed some old-fashioned parental guidance.


Best Margin Notes columns (Kevin Clarke)

You want fries with that? (October)
Fast food has meant slow death for thousands. Why aren't we doing more about it?

Please, Sir, I want some more (November)
The nation's most vulnerable children are getting the short end of the spending stick.


Best Sounding Board Surveys

Catholic and Feminist: You got a problem with that? (January)

Not your mother's rhythm method: An argument for Natural Family Planning (May)

Two rites make a wrong: Readers debate the return of the Latin Mass (August)


Best Essays

My father, Our Father (February) A father's journey through the 12 steps of AA helps his daughter see God anew.

Confessions of a repeat offender (August) A young woman returns again and again to Confession, even though she keeps on falling.

Death comes for the book club (October) This essay doubles as a reading list for Catholic book clubs. Also launched in 2009: The U.S. Catholic Book Club.


Tell us what you think: What are your favorite U.S. Catholic stories from the past year? Did any story stick with you that we haven't listed here? What was the top Catholic news story in 2010 (vote here)? What would you like to see us cover in 2010?