US Catholic Faith in Real Life

James McLaughlin: Filing taxes for the poor

By Michelle Bearden| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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Nobody likes to do taxes. That includes James McLaughlin, a Chicago-based attorney with the firm Kirkland & Ellis.

But there's an upside to the process, especially when you're doing those taxes gratis for people who need assistance with the complicated forms but can't afford it.

"When you tell someone he's getting a refund of $3,000, he gives you a smile that lights up the sky," McLaughlin, 31, says. "It's a wonderful thing to be able to deliver news like that."


Catholic workers

By Michelle Bearden| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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These people of faith are volunteering outside the box when it comes to serving those in need. Read on to learn how they are putting their faith to work and find out how you can get started doing the same.  

Linda Smith: Teaching English to immigrants

Donald Douglas: Providing health care for the uninsured


Linda Smith: Teaching English to immigrants

By Michelle Bearden| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article

When Ed Smith retired from his law practice, he and his wife, Linda, dreamed of all the things they would do.

But three months later, he was diagnosed with cancer. And five months after that, he died.

Linda Smith went from planning their long-awaited trip to Italy to organizing her beloved husband's funeral.

"You think you have all the time in the world," says Smith, 61. "Then you realize just how precious every moment is. There are no guarantees."


Donald Douglas: Providing health care for the uninsured

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For nearly 40 years gastroenterologist Donald Douglas of Lewisburg, Pennsylvania practiced medicine in the traditional way. He worked in comfortable medical suites and hospitals with access to the best equipment that technology offered. Most of his patients had insurance coverage that allowed them to pursue the treatment they needed.

He could have retired from his profession, never stepping outside his comfort zone.


Through a glass darkly: How Catholics struggle with mental illness

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Mental illness is still murky territory for those who experience it, their families, and their church.

Not long after Rich Salazar moved to DeKalb, Illinois from California, he found himself knocking at the door of St. Mary's Church. The then-college student had recently been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and was in crisis mode. Unable to reach his mother at work and not knowing where else to go, Salazar told himself, "I have to go to church."


Resources for those struggling with mental illness

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Struggling with mental illness?

Sister Kathryn James Hermes, author of Surviving Depression: A Catholic Approach (Pauline Books & Media), offers some practical suggestions for dealing with mental illness:


Be here now: The benefits of living in the present

By Kathy Daley| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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There's no time like the present for living in God's presence.

On Call: An excerpt from Paul Wilkes' In Due Season

By Paul Wilkes| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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The Body of Christ is the best medicine for body and soul, regardless of whether we are "worthy" to receive him.

Is your faith working?

By Megan Sweas| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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When U.S. Catholic readers punch the clock, they don't forget that they are still on God's time, according to a Reader Survey in honor of Labor Day.

The more we strive to secure a common good corresponding to the real needs of our neighbors, the more effectively we love them," Pope Benedict XVI wrote in his recent encyclical Caritas in Veritate (Charity in Truth). "Every Christian is called to practice this charity in a manner corresponding to his vocation."


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