US Catholic Faith in Real Life

Faith of a father

By Patrick T. Reardon | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

Last year in our Parish Church, I preached on Father's Day. I'd never before given a true in-the-pulpit sermon, but I was there as a sort of expert witness. I'm a father, first of all. My wife, Cathy, and I have two children: David, who's 13, and Sarah, 10. And a couple of years ago I wrote a book on fatherhood called Daily Meditations (with Scripture) for Busy Dads (ACTA Publications, 1995).

The world is full of God

By Rabbi Lawrence Kushner | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

"Judaism," writes Rabbi Lawrence Kushner in his new book, Jewish Spirituality: A Brief Introduction for Christians(Jewish Lights), "is a tradition that may at times, for Christians, feel strangely familiar." He adds, "To be sure, you can only have one religion at a time. But you can, from studying another one, even from the outside, learn to see your own spiritual tradition through a new lens." And so follows his eloquent and straightforward exposition of Jewish spirituality.

These souls are made for walking

By Michael J. Farrell | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

On an otherwise sunny day The Holy Mountain is enveloped in fog. It may be an omen. A hundred meters out, there's a white statue of the saint. Those who are going to turn back do so at the statue, the pilgrim has been told. Mere tourists. Staff in hand, the pilgrim pushes ahead. A pristine stream splashes down from the mountain-holy water too potent to be bottled. The trail of rough boulders and sharp stones circles behind a lesser mountain before attacking Croagh Patrick, locally called the Reek, a 2,510-foot-tall cone of white quartz pointing to heaven.

A remarkable life

By Robert E. Burns | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

Robert E. Burns wouldn't approve of this approach to Journalism. He wasn't one for shining a light on one of the editors. During his regime-executive editor of U.S. Catholic from 1963 to 1984-he strictly followed the policy of not identifying authors by more than name (he felt articles should be judged by the strength of the ideas they contained, not the writer's credentials or celebrity). For most of the 37 years he wrote this column his authorship was sparely acknowledged by the initials R.E.B.

Six ordinary opportunities for raising good kids

By Tom McGrath | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

The scary part of parenting is that you never know when you're making an indelible impression on your kids, nor what lesson your child is taking from it. Looking back warmly on efforts to foster couth and culture in his children, a father might be prone to cast about for a word of appreciation.

Do you remember when we took you to the library every Saturday morning for those Classics for Young Readers sessions?"

"Yeah, I learned a lot. That's where I met Larry, and he taught me how to burp on command."

"Ah, splendid."

Give me a sign

By Renée M. LaReau | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
How do I know I'm doing God's will?


Two years into her work at a New York advertising research firm, Joan Conroy realized her workdays were making her miserable.

"A lot of it was just the way I was feeling when I would come home at the end of the day," says Conroy, 27. "I wasn't feeling like I had energy; I was burned out. I didn't want to come home every day feeling like this."

Conroy, who has a bachelor's degree in psychology, longingly thought of her past social services work with homeless people, which she had done for two years after college.

French connection

By Heidi Schlumpf | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
In Burgundy's wine country, young people find peace and perspective on retreat at a monastery in Taize.


At first there is fidgeting. And clearing of throats. Legs crossed and uncrossed, positions shifted. But slowly the silence descends, and there is stillness. For 15 whole minutes, hundreds of teenagers and young adults are alone-together-with their thoughts and with their God.

Catholics Read program offers free Bible resources and study program

By Matt Bigelow | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Catholics Read provides Catholics with supplemental material and a reading guide to understanding the Bible in an effort to help Catholics grow in faith and understanding of the sacred scripture.

Four routes to the ultimate destination

U.S. Catholic | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
If you're seeking to add a new dimension to your spiritual life, here's a quick introduction to some of the most time-honored rich spiritual traditions around.

Basic focus: "Finding God in all things." Ongoing discernment that calls its followers to recognize good and choose it over evil, and to experience the presence of God in all creation. All that we do should focus on seeking and serving the greater glory of God.
Spiritual practices: Spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius, examen of consciousness.