US Catholic Faith in Real Life

They're baaack! What's behind the return of the exorcist

By Daniel Burke | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
After a decades-long absence, interest in demonic possession—and the ritual to defeat it—is on the rise.

For more than a decade, Frank, a software consultant who lives near Silicon Valley, California has been haunted by depression and rage. Searching for remedies to lift his dark mood, Frank, 52, tried pills, therapy, even channeling spirits. Nothing worked.

The scandal continues: Clergy sex abuse crisis

By Anne M. Burke | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Despite the steps taken to protect children in recent years, Justice Anne Burke says that recent development suggest little has changed for the hierarchy.

Just when it appeared that the fallout over the abuse scandal in our own nation could not get any worse, the other shoe dropped in Philadelphia. A large number of accused clerics had never been removed from active ministry by either the past or current archbishop of Philadelphia.

When in Rome: John Paull II's legacy at the Vatican

By Richard R. Gaillardetz | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
In his 26 years as pope, John Paul II gave new shape to the papacy, Richard R. Gaillardetz reflected shortly after his death. With his beatification, it's worth looking back on his papal legacy to see whether Pope Benedict XVI has followed in John Paul II’s footsteps or found his own way.

Habemus papam. We have a pope. The election of Pope Benedict XVI marks the conclusion of one of the most significant transitional moments in Roman Catholicism, rivaled only, perhaps, by the convocation of an ecumenical council.

Our lips are sealed: Why young Catholics don't confess

By Robert Nugent, S.D.S. | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
A priest ponders ways to get young Catholics to confession.

He was a 16-year-old Catholic high school student who entered my confessional during a school reconciliation service at a local retreat house where I assist with confessions. “I’ve done everything,” he said, like some penitents when they don’t know where to begin or how to get started.

What's right with this picture? Young Latinos take the lead

By Agustin Gurza | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Young Latinos are changing the face of Catholic youth ministry.

Judgment call: Bishop v. conscience

By Bryan Cones | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
A bishop’s authority cannot replace the graced conscience of the baptized.

I’ll never forget my first serious argument with a priest: I was a senior in high school and co-director of a retreat. A highlight of the experience was a surprise letter from our parents, often an emotional moment after a long weekend of little sleep, a lot of soul-searching, and the combined intensity of 40 teenagers.

Pregnant with possibility: Joyce Rupp on keeping the faith

By Joyce Rupp | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
In this edited version of her acceptance speech for the 2004 U.S. Catholic Award, author Joyce Rupp describes herself as a spiritual midwife, aiding the birth of a more balanced and inclusive church.

A medical midwife has to be knowledgeable about the birthing process. She informs and helps the one giving birth. She cheers the mother on but cannot do the birthing for her. So, too, with a spiritual midwife.

A vision of things to come

By Godfrey Diekmann | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

Living in daily expectation of "seeing God,"Father Godfrey Diekmann, O.S.B. shares his thoughts about heaven, beauty, and deification.

Church Ladies

By Renée M. LaReau | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Scratching the stained-glass ceiling, an increasing number of women hold leadership positions in the church. A look at the gifts they bring and the challenges they face.

Unexcusable absence: How Catholic schools reach Hispanic students

By Jeff Parrott | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Catholic schools have largely failed to attract Hispanic Catholics, but some parishes have found innovative ways to draw them in.

As her Puerto Rican immigrant mother had done with her as a child growing up in Chicago, Jennifer Bonesz sent both of her daughters to Catholic schools. Athena, 14, attended from preschool through eighth grade, and Damary, 8, from preschool through third grade.