US Catholic Faith in Real Life

Tempted by gossip? There’s a psalm for that

Give your kids the words they need to become good communicators.

By Annemarie Scobey |
Article Lifestyle

I know I’m not supposed to play favorites with parts of the Mass, but I do. I most look forward to the homily, and a good one will stick with me for a week or more. Too often I regard the first reading, psalm response, and various beautiful prayers as transitional parts of the Mass that propel me toward my favorite parts.

Most Sundays if you would ask me what the psalm was, I’d probably stare at you blankly. But on a recent Sunday, Psalm 137 leapt out at me: “Let my tongue be silent, O Lord, my God, if I should ever forget about you.”

Advertisement


Three steps to raising a faith-filled kid

It is not in spite but because of life's disappointments that we must foster children's spiritual imaginations.

By Meghan Murphy-Gill |
Article Lifestyle

Recently a friend of mine posted in a Facebook group for moms that she was concerned about her son who was expressing a sincere love of God, a response which pained her. “I wish I could just enjoy it and not feel this weird sadness about it,” she said.

I briefly considered a joke: “This is very on-brand for you.” My friend, for as long as I’ve known her, has wrestled with how to talk to her kids about matters of faith. I wouldn’t call her a cynic, because it’s her awareness of how good the world can and should be that makes the awareness of the negative so troubling. 

Advertisement


Peace on earth begins at the kitchen table

We cannot lead our children toward peace if we ourselves are feeling unsettled.

By Annemarie Scobey |
Article Your Faith

Beth, a mother of four ages 5 to 12, admits that her children may see her as June Cleaver. “I don’t know that they’ve ever seen me in my pajamas in the morning,” Beth says. “By the time they get up, I’m showered and dressed with my makeup on.” Far from being an aspiring 1950s housewife, however, Beth explains that getting up an hour before her children is something she does for herself—not her kids.

“Once they get up, my life is crazy,” she says. “Taking the time in the quiet, before that first kid wakes up, gives me the peace I need to start the day.”

Advertisement


How to love your kid, even when you don’t like them

It’s easy to love our children when they are being sweet. But what about when they act particularly rotten?

By Annemarie Scobey |
Article Lifestyle

This morning Liam, our 10-year-old, was upset because I wouldn’t let him eat Cocoa Krispies for breakfast. Despite a long-standing rule that sugared cereal is for weekends only, Liam thought this should be the morning that I made an exception. I said no.

Liam, overtired from staying up past his bedtime the night before, was soon a wailing mess on the couch. I held my ground and went about my morning routine matter-of-factly, deciding that ignoring Liam was the strategy that made the most sense.

Advertisement


To experience God’s grace, accept help

To allow someone to help us requires us to come to terms with our own vulnerability.

By Annemarie Scobey |
Article Your Faith

We went out to dinner recently with a family whose son, Jonah, was celebrating his 14th birthday.

After checking with his parents whether it would be all right to order something special, he chose steak and a double-baked potato, a step up from the burgers the rest of us ordered. When the meal came, Jonah, not a regular steak eater, found he didn’t care for it. His dad offered Jonah his own burger as a trade. Jonah, feeling bad about his decision, could not accept.

Advertisement


What the agony in the garden says about human suffering

How scripture can help you talk to your kids about pain and suffering.

By Annemarie Scobey |
Article Your Faith

Jesus came with them to Gethsemane and said to his disciples, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” He took along Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to feel sorrow and distress. Then he said to them. “My soul is sorrowful even to death. Remain here and keep watch with me.” He advanced a little and feel prostrate in prayer, saying, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet, not as I will, but as you will.”

Advertisement


When in doubt, pray to the saints

Unknown saints can play just as large a role in our daily faith lives as famous ones.

By Annemarie Scobey |
Article Your Faith

If a saint is anyone who has died and is in heaven with God, as the Catholic Church defines the word, there are a lot more saints up there than the few famous ones the church has canonized.

Advertisement


For Lent, give up anger and seek forgiveness

Release the tight chains of anger.

By Annemarie Scobey |
Article Lifestyle

Shannon, a partner in a Chicago-area law firm, had a client who was offered the opportunity to settle a case with a business competitor for $70,000 and the closing of the competitor’s business.

Advertisement


If the church wants to support family life, it should look to socioeconomics

Any Catholic teaching on family spirituality must consider the economic reality of American families.

By Meghan Murphy-Gill |
Article Lifestyle

I have one child, a son, born when I was two months from turning 35—the age when expectant mothers are termed geriatric. My one son seemingly presents a problem for a surprising number of strangers and people I know well: “Only one?” they ask suspiciously as they look at me with narrowed eyes. “But isn’t he going to be lonely?” (As the most off-the-charts extrovert in our family, he is not.) See also: “But big families are fun!” (For whom? I long to retort.) “I think you’ll regret it later if you don’t have more.” (The reverse could also be true.) “Children are a blessing!”

Advertisement


Passing the faith is as easy as passing the potatoes

Catholicism is easier to pass along than you might think.

By Catherine O'Connell-Cahill |
Article Lifestyle

“Show, don’t tell” is one big commandment of writing. Telling is super boring: “The left fielder had a strong arm.” You want a writer to show you the scene: “As 31,942 fans watched in disbelief, Oakland A’s outfielder Yoenis Céspedes hurled the ball 300 feet from the left field corner of Angel Stadium and cut down the Angels’ Howie Kendrick as he streaked for home.”

Advertisement


Pages