Can commerce and religion go their separate ways this Christmas?

By Tom Ehrich | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons

c. 2014 Religion News Service

(RNS) I’ve decided not to worry about the earlier-than-ever start to Christmas commerce this year. Shortly after Halloween, with hardly a nod to Thanksgiving, stores and advertisers began going full-bore on the supposed “Christmas package,” namely, gift-giving, family fun, decorating, and entertaining.


This Thanksgiving, develop an attitude of gratitude

By Annemarie Scobey-Polacheck| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Marriage and Family Saints, Feasts, and Seasons
The good news: If you have an attitude of gratitude, it does rub off on your kids.

When I was about 7, the family next door took me out for ice cream. This was a rare treat because they chose Baskin-Robbins 31 Flavors, not the local frozen custard stand with only vanilla and chocolate, where my own family normally went. I chose mint chocolate chip, which was delicious. As I got out of the car afterward, I said goodbye. The mother of the family said, “You’re welcome.” I was horrified. I had forgotten to say thank you.


Remembering those who have gone before us

By Father Bryan Massingale| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons Spirituality
Nothing can compel us to practice hope, that most fragile of virtues. We can only be inspired.

Why is there no patron saint of veterans?

By Patrick Gallagher| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons
The ranks of the saints are filled with men and women who risked their lives in battle. So why don’t military veterans have a patron of their own?

In the parish church of my youth, my family often sat under a stained glass window that depicted a poor man lying on the ground with his hand out to the Roman officer towering over him. Oddly, the soldier was cutting his own cloak in two. It was a long time before I learned that the Roman was St. Martin of Tours, a patron saint of soldiers.


20 years ago in U.S. Catholic: May the circle be unbroken: Why Catholics treasure their saints

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Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons Scripture and Theology

By Sister Elizabeth Johnson, C.S.J.

This article appeared in the November 1994 issue of U.S. Catholic (Vol. 59, No. 11, pages 12-16).


Animal house of worship

By Angelo Stagnaro| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons
Dogs, cats, snakes, and police horses convene for a blessing on the feast of St Francis.

Every year, like clockwork, my dogs receive a blessing on October 4, the feast of St. Francis of Assisi. The warranty on the blessing doesn’t wear out, but I don’t want to take any chances on any of my charges. Neither do my fellow parishioners, as the Blessing of the Animals is a big deal in our parish. Everyone seemingly has a critter dependent upon him or her.


Beyond birth control: A look at the legacies of Pope Paul VI

By David Gibson| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons Vatican

St. Vincent de Paul: Patron of the poor

By Meghan J. Clark| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons Social Justice
We can borrow Vincent de Paul’s tough questions about how to best help those most in need.

Turn away from the new iPhone and toward your neighbor. This is the message of Pope Francis—to reject what he labels the “throwaway culture” in which not just possessions but people are disposable when a newer, flashier model appears. Instead of spiritual worldliness, Pope Francis invites us to build community, to become a church on the margins. To do this, we might just need a little help from the saints.


Is James Foley a martyr? A brutal death sparks a faith-based debate

By David Gibson| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons War and Peace

c. 2014 Religion News Service

(RNS) From the moment news broke that U.S. journalist James Foley had been beheaded by Islamic State extremists in the Middle East, many Christians, especially Foley’s fellow Catholics, began calling him a martyr, with some even saying he should be considered a saint.

Yet that characterization has left others uneasy, and the discussion is raising larger questions about what constitutes martyrdom.


Flower child: St. Thérèse of Lisieux

By Mary Anne McElroy| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons
Just like modern millennials, Thérèse of Lisieux struggled with how to make an impact on her world.

Ten years ago, when I was a 14-year-old high school student, my religion teacher arranged for me to interview Father Patrick Ahearn, a leading expert on St. Thérèse of Lisieux who happened to reside just blocks away from our school at St. Thomas More Church on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. What at the time seemed like frustrating extra work now stands out in my mind as one of the most memorable and meaningful experiences of my adolescence.


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