What is the preferential option for the poor?
I have a friend who is a permanent deacon. He’s a former Marine, and though he is wonderfully kind, he can also turn on his military face and voice to let you know when he means business. One Sunday at Mass, he preached a homily about prayer, particularly about praying for the poor. He had on his game face that day, and at the end of his homily he leaned in close to the microphone and said in a terrifyingly stern whisper, “I know you are all busy. But you can give 30 minutes of your God-given breath to pray for the poor.”
Oscar Romero declared a martyr as Vatican inches him toward sainthood
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”).
The shameful silence surrounding sexual assault in the military
Our military men and women deserve the best protection, both in and out of combat.
Why wealth inequality matters
As the rich get richer, the growing inequality poses a wealth of problems.
Undocumented failure: Why we must care for our immigrant brothers and sisters
The father, in his rage and grief, told me that this country did not care about his son who lay dying.
Certain events in our lives get burned into our memories and become a part of us. Often these events happen at beginnings and endings: births and deaths. Perhaps because of the definitude of those moments, we recognize them as utterly important and crucial.
Get to know a person living in poverty
Creating a culture of encounter requires more than just organizing drives. It might even mean learning a name or two.
About 10 years ago, during a college Christmas break, I spent a couple of days with a group of classmates at a Franciscan community of priests and brothers in the South Bronx. One night we packed a van with sandwiches and a tank of hot chocolate, and a friar named Brother Giuseppe drove us down to Lower Manhattan. We parked and unloaded at a street corner where the Franciscans spend time with the homeless all year round.
Pope Francis to build showers for people experiencing homelessness in St. Peter’s Square
c. 2014 Religion News Service
VATICAN CITY (RNS) In his latest bid to ease the suffering of the poor—and upend the expectations of the papacy—Pope Francis plans to build showers for people who are homeless under the sweeping white colonnade of St. Peter’s Square. Three showers are to be built into refurbished public restrooms provided for Catholic pilgrims along the marble columns leading into the historic basilica, which was completed in 1626.
Is suicide a sin?
Generations of Catholics were raised to believe that suicide was one of the gravest sins a person can commit—and many Catholics today still fear that a loved one who dies by suicide is bound to spend eternity in hell. Many families have stories of being denied a church funeral or hearing that the person who died could not be buried in the Catholic cemetery where their family members were laid to rest. Yet even though these beliefs persist among many Catholics, they aren’t an entirely accurate reflection of the church’s modern understanding of suicide.
What is liberation theology?
A little more than a year into his papacy, Pope Francis seems to be speaking loudest about economic injustice, alternatively denouncing “trickle-down” economics and calling over and over again for a “poor church for the poor.” Francis’ supporters and opponents alike often blame this particular attitude on one source: liberation theology.
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