US Catholic Faith in Real Life

January 2014

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Vol. 79, No. 1


Expert Witness: From piety to politics

An interview with Sister Nancy Sylvester, I.H.M.
For women religious, Vatican II didn't only lead to a change in habits; it paved the way for them to change the world. For Sister Nancy Sylvester, that road took an unexpected turn toward the nation's capital.


Web-only sidebar:

Working toward systemic change in the church today



Let's get organized

By Kristen Hannum
Unprotected by fair labor laws, domestic workers are standing up and demanding that employers clean up their act and take better care of these hard-working caregivers.

Web-only sidebar:

Tips for employers of domestic workers



When Mom is in prison

By Laura Fletcher

Children of incarcerated women can suffer from severe separation anxiety. It often takes a strong support system to get the mothers back on their feet and to keep the family together.

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Women have a particularly hard time in prison


Sounding Board

Don't be stingy with the sacraments

By Father Rosendo Urrabazo
The first rule of being a pastor should be "Don't obsess over the rules," especially when it comes to meeting people's spiritual needs. In Feedback, readers consider whether church practices always need to be done by the book.

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Extra feedback from U.S. Catholic readers



(Essays, short stories, and poems may not be available online.)


Practicing Catholic: I soap and pray

By Ed Block
Buried deep in that sink full of dirty dishes is a soul-cleansing opportunity for spiritual reflection and growth.

Poem: Sisters

By Brian Doyle

This is my body

By Cathleen Chopra-McGowan
From India to Illinois, every woman you see on the street deserves to be treated with the same level of respect.



Editors' Note

You May Be Right (Letters to the Editor)

Signs of the Times (News)

Catholic Tastes (Humor)

Culture in Context: Music, film, and book reviews

At Home with Our Faith (Family spirituality)

Eye of the Beholder (Art meditation)

Glad You Asked: Why did Jesus need to be baptized?



The Examined Life: Inquiring popes want to know
By Bryan Cones

Margin Notes: Family emergency
By Kevin Clarke

Culture in Context: Betty Crocker's revenge
By Meghan Murphy-Gill

Testaments: That which remains
By Alice Camille