Oscar Romero declared a martyr as Vatican inches him toward sainthood

By Josephine McKenna| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Hispanic Catholics Saints, Feasts, and Seasons Social Justice Vatican

c. 2015 Religion News Service

VATICAN CITY (RNS) Archbishop Oscar Romero, the hero of the Catholic left who was assassinated in 1980 while celebrating Mass in El Salvador, is inching one step closer to sainthood after his case languished in bureaucratic limbo for decades.

According to the Italian Catholic bishops daily, Avvenire, a panel of theologians at the Congregation for the Causes of Saints has ruled unanimously that Romero should be considered a martyr, or murdered “in odium fidei” (Latin for “hatred of faith”).


Warm up your new year

By Annemarie Scobey-Polacheck| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Marriage and Family Saints, Feasts, and Seasons

If 2014 was a bit rocky for your family, this long New Year’s weekend might be just what you need to get back on track. Find a cozy time and talk as a family about some things you’d like to do better in 2015. Consider having a calendar out, so you can write down any good ideas that come up. Pour some hot cocoa or steaming cups of cider—studies show that hot liquids make us feel warmer and more generous toward others.

Here are some New Year's resolutions that could help your family have a better year in 2015:


What is the communion of saints?

By Catherine O'Connell-Cahill| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons Scripture and Theology

Borrowing from the Letter to the Hebrews and from theologian and Sister of St. Joseph Elizabeth Johnson, we can imagine the communion of saints as a giant stadium of people, all of whom have run, or are running, a great race. As each of us takes our turn at the starting line, we are lifted up by the love and encouragement of all those who know well the challenges ahead of us and who have stayed to accompany us and cheer us on.


Can you question the Virgin Birth and still be a Christian?

By Kimberly Winston| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons Scripture and Theology

(RNS) It’s a tough sell: A young, unmarried teenager gets pregnant, but the father isn’t a man but God himself. And the girl is a virgin—and (some believe) remains one even after she delivers a strapping baby boy. 

That’s the story of the Virgin Birth, one of the central tenets of faith for the world’s 2 billion Christians. The story is embraced by every branch of Christianity, from Eastern Orthodoxy to Mormonism, Catholic, and Protestant.


Pining for Advent: How a Christmas tree can get you in the holiday spirit

By Gina Ciliberto| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons
A Christmas tree can spruce up our preparation for the holiday.

35 years ago in U.S. Catholic: Five ways to calm down Christmas

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Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons

By Dan Grippo

This article appeared in the December 1979 issue of U.S. Catholic (Vol. 44, No. 12, pages 23-24).

The Christmas season, amid the hustle and bustle, can leave little time to relax. Dan Grippo offers some suggestions to mellow you out and help you enjoy the things that really matter this time of year.

Christmas. I’m sick of fighting my way into jammed parking lots, being subjected to syrupy renditions of “Silent Night” while riding department store escalators and waiting in cashier lines until my feet ache.


Hollywood's hidden Christmas gems

By Sister Rose Pacatte, F.S.P.| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Culture Reviews Saints, Feasts, and Seasons
What makes a compelling Christmas movie—the season, the music, the characters? Maybe it is something else entirely.

Light up your Advent: Resources to make the most of the season

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Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons
Have yourself a merry little Christmas--but don't let Advent pass you by.

Advent is here, and the countdown to Christmas is on. But don't get too hung up on planning for December 25--the four weeks leading up to Christ's birth (and the days after it) are just as important. If you're having some trouble blocking out the holiday madness and settling down for some Advent reflection, here are some essays, blogs, and other resources to help you get in the spirit.


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.


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