Catholic News & Perspective

December 2022

Dec 30

Opening the Word: Calling Mary ‘Mother of God’

By: Father Joshua J. Whitfield It’s good to begin each new year remembering our ancient faith, to remember it well, so we can go well on our pilgrim way. It focuses us on the proper spiritual foundation of Catholic truth, a truth that enlivens our souls, giving us the true Christ in true dogma. It sets everything else in order — our...
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Dec 28

Pope advances sainthood causes, including first ‘martyr’ of charity

By: Carol Glatz VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis recognized the martyrdom of members of a Polish family who were sheltering a Jewish family during World War II, and, for the first time, advanced the sainthood cause of a candidate under the category of heroically offering his life out of loving service to others. And following centuries of...
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Dec 26

Wesley, Mendelssohn and Charlie Brown: The makers of a carol

By: Victoria Costa In 1739, Charles Wesley published the text of “Hymn for Christmas-Day” in “Hymns and Sacred Poems.” This hymn was one of over 6,500 hymns Wesley would compose during his lifetime as a leader of the Methodist movement in England. “Hymn for Christmas-Day” begins with a couplet that might seem...
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Dec 23

Opening the Word: Arriving at the manger

By: Catherine Cavadini The scriptural scene for this Christmas Sunday is familiar to us all. We encounter it in most Nativity scenes. But there, the scene is calm — they are but statues. But in Scripture, the scene is a busy one: angels come and go, shepherds come and go … and come again, stories of a newborn King and God’s...
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Dec 21

Turning Points: St. Thomas More

By: Russell Shaw Appropriately for an eminent lawyer, the turning point of St. Thomas More’s life came during a trial. But unlike other trials in which he’d been involved, this time he was the one on trial — accused of the heinous crime of treason to the king he had faithfully served. To More, the issue at stake was something...
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Dec 19

What to say to friends who like Catholicism in theory but not in practice

By: David Mills The friend, like many friends in the Protestant world I left two decades ago, felt strongly attracted to the Church and its distinctive doctrines, but also strongly dis-attracted by the way he saw them carried out in Catholic life. He believed them to be true, but so objected to the way he saw them expressed that he wondered if...
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Dec 16

Opening the Word: A gift from heaven

By: Father Joshua J. Whitfield “Infant that he was, he was also the Word.” That’s the simple truth, as St. Augustine put it, of the mystery of Christmas, that the Word became flesh and dwelt among us (cf. Jn 1:14). It’s not a truth one figures out on one’s own; rather, it’s a revelation. Our minds must be...
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Dec 14

What the nighttime wanderings of a couple of kids can teach us this Advent

By: Gretchen R. Crowe The baby cried the other night around 3 a.m. As I stumbled toward the nursery, I ran into my 3-year-old in the hall. I shushed her protests as I steered her back to her bed, not wanting her to wake up her big brother, who she shares a room with. I shouldn’t have worried, though, because I had just left the 5-year-old...
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Dec 12

The blessing of four full weeks of Advent

By: Father Patrick Briscoe What day is Christmas? It’s a delightful thing to think about. Easter, tied to the celebration of Passover, occurs each year on Sunday. But Christmas, tied to Dec. 25, is not set on a particular day of the week. This year, Christmas Day falls on a Sunday. The last time Christmas Day fell on Sunday was 2016. But...
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Dec 9

Opening the Word: Rejoicing in the desert

By: Catherine Cavadini I find our culture often presents challenges to finding joy in our waiting. Christmas décor has been on the shelves for months now, and Christmas sales have been announced by my inbox since sometime in October! But waiting can be a joyful time, especially when we are aware that we are not simply waiting, but that we...
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Dec 7

‘O come, let us adore him’

By: Our Sunday Visitor Editorial Board “O Come, All Ye Faithful” is undoubtedly one of the most beloved Christmas carols. Whether it echoes in hearts from its use in Advent, Christmas and Epiphany liturgies, or from the dulcet tones of Bing Crosby’s crooning, the hymn brings many to tears every Christmas season. While the exact...
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Dec 5

Be Jesus — and with Jesus — on the streets

By: Kathryn Jean Lopez “What are they protesting?” “Sin.” I’ve been to more than a few Eucharistic processions in major American cities in my time. And part of the joy of it is the questions people ask along the way. Even New Yorkers, who are known to keep their heads down and keep moving, stop and look. And...
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Dec 2

Opening the Word: The desert matters

By: Father Joshua J. Whitfield “For I in my pride was daring to seek what only a humble person can find,” St. Augustine said. That’s the lesson, an important one, at least, this Second Sunday of Advent, about how to find God. Augustine was talking about his own arrogance, why for so many years he refused to follow...
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