US Catholic Faith in Real Life

Humble piety

By Joel Schorn | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
The road to sainthood is difficult, but newly canonized Jeanne Jugan knew that patience would bring otherworldly success.

In the last few years I have been a friend to an elderly man and helped care for a frail and aging relative who needed daily assistance and biweekly trips for renal dialysis treatment. When I took on these tasks, I thought, “Here’s my chance to be a saint.”

Fire starter

By Donald W. Mitchell | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Chiara Lubich’s vision of warmth and friendship has sparked dialogue among people of many faiths.

During the horrors of World War II, Chiara Lubich lived with a group of young women companions in Trent, Italy. “While in the air-raid shelter, we came upon the page of the gospel which speaks of the testament of Jesus: ‘May they all be one, Father, as you and I are one,’ ” Lubich said of this time. “These words seemed to light up one by one. That ‘everyone’ expanded our horizon. That prayer for unity was to be the goal of our life.”

Divine Comedian: Siobhan Fallon Hogan

By Diane Carlton | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Actress Siobhan Fallon Hogan is serious about faith and family, but that hasn’t stopped her from being funny, too.

She’s appeared in more than 25 major motion pictures and countless episodes of television shows including Seinfeld, Saturday Night Live, and 30 Rock.

Put in a good word

By Patrick Gallagher | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
If a eulogy sounds to good to be true, it probably is. Putting on rose-colored glasses to look at a loved one’s life, however, might be just what we need for resolution.

Recently I attended the wake and funeral for the father of a friend. At the wake, the children—now all middle-aged—took turns talking about their dad. They spoke with affection about his love for their mother and his devout faith.

God-spotting: Can we make a case for the Almighty?

By Jo McGowan | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
India and the United States may be on opposite ends of the belief spectrum, but both cultures must make a case for God that includes everyone.

In an age of atheism, in which it is considered rude in many circles to even bring up religion, I’ve got a problem. Remember that wonderful old Joni Mitchell song from her album Blue? It’s called “A Case of You.”

“Oh, I could drink a case of you, darling,
And I would still be on my feet,
Oh I would still be on my feet.”

Sermon on the mound: John Sexton on baseball and God

By James Breig | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
In the classroom and the stands, the president of NYU roots for God.

John Sexton, the president of New York University, holds tight to some deep truths: that his late wife is still with him, that there’s more to life than science, and that baseball and God are connected.

He is also a man of intriguing contradictions. A native of Brooklyn, he roots for the Yankees. He works within an environment of science and learning, but he holds

on to his belief in the reality of the ineffable. Surrounded by doubters, he remains steadfast in his Catholicism.

Work hard, pray hard: More on Dorothy Day

By A U.S. Catholic interview | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
The editors interview Jim Forest, biographer and friend of Dorothy Day--and a former Catholic Worker himself, about Dorothy Day's abortion, conversion to Catholicism, and what she might think about women's ordination.

How did Dorothy Day become Catholic?

Angels we have heard on low

Online Editor | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Angels are the personal manifestations of the earthbound grace of God. John Shea comments on the role of angels in the spiritual lives of people in an excerpt from A Month by Month Guide to Entertaining Angels by Mark Boyer.

A recent novel begins with a spaceship surging into outer space. One of the astronauts glances out the portal at the vast empty expanse. An angel wings by.

My guardian dear: Guardian angels in action

By Robert Reilly | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
A personal cherub, ever this day, at your side? How else do you explain those close calls?

No one likes to be taken for granted. I suppose even pure spirits bristle at neglect. That's why I've spent a lot of time these past few years apologizing to my guardian angel.

Many adult Catholics dismiss the presence of these protectors as harmless residue from their parochial years. The widespread belief that each person receives a special angel to watch over their bodily and spiritual health has often been associated with the protection of children in both prayer and art.

Eating is believing: A U.S. Catholic interview with Chef Kevin Gillespie

By A U.S. Catholic interview | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
What you put on your plate says something about the kind of person you are, says this Catholic gourmet chef and reality TV star.

Kevin Gillespie comes from a long line of Southerners: “My parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, and great-great-grandparents are all from the South,” he says. They hail specifically from the Appalachian Mountains, where the traditional diet depended heavily on what was in season and grown locally, thanks to minimal opportunities for preservation.