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  • Train leaders
    Unfortunately, the majority of bishops and priests are not educated or equipped to confront the foundational leadership issues inflicting great damage on our church. The leading and management of an organization requires specialized education the church does not currently provide.  
  • Broke my heart
    How can the faith which sustained me for 75 years not recognize the intellectual dishonesty of such “scientific” claims?
  • Total delight
    I had the vision that our young Catholic and other children in our schools are getting prepared to make wonderful contributions in the years ahead.
  • A Dutchman in New York

    As he disembarked, my dad could not believe how cordial New York was. The city actually threw a parade with marching bands, in honor of the newly arrived immigrants. In fact, even the archbishop and the mayor showed up. To top it off, all the beer in Times Square was free. My dad felt so honored, that he paraded down Broadway, right alongside the marching bands, waving at the crowds, waving to all his new countrymen.

  • We’ve barely scratched the surface of our Lenten journey, which means I’ve faltered at least 462 times in my observances so far, with approximately 2,954 failures to go until we finally reach Easter Sunday.
  • Becoming Peter's father
    Then I met a girl, and from April 1 to April 6, 2012, we I we had a baby. But we wanted him gone, and we had our way.
  • From the archives
    Funny creatures, we are, and never content.
  • How beautiful is it to remember that every life, even one seemingly insignificant is in fact incredibly significant?
  • The whole package
    The late Father Francis Kennard loved a reverent liturgy and was a giant in western Oregon’s social justice movement in the mid-20th century. He’s a patron we could use now.  
  • Leave it to God
    If we stand by as executions happen, then we, as Catholic citizens, must acknowledge that not everyone has a right to life.
  • Imagine you’re sitting in front of your doctor, and he says that your health definitely needs to improve. He then looks you square in the eyes and says, “If you wish to live a healthy long life, you must stop eating junk food and living a sedentary lifestyle, and start eating plenty of healthy foods and exercise every day.”
  • Nary an apology
    To anyone who saw the full video recordings of the Covington boys at the D.C. March for Life, it’s obvious that these Catholic high school students were lined up on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, waiting for their bus, when they were confronted.
  • Pray for leaders
    Pray for our president and other leaders, asking forgiveness for our sins, fasting and praising God for his goodness and love. Yes, my continued prayer is for God’s sovereignty, divine providence and glory to cover the earth as the waters cover the sea. 
  • In God’s eyes
    Created in God’s image, we are all equal before God with human dignity and rights. Our church, communities and country benefit from the courage, skills, energy, aspirations and cultural diversity of newcomers.
  • Transformation
    We need to remember and believe that altar bread and wine, once consecrated, has undergone a complete transformation into the body, blood, soul, and divinity of our Lord God, Jesus Christ.
  • Pray, even if poorly
    “I’ll pray for you.” In college, these words felt like nails on a chalkboard to me — pretentiously pious. Were they really going to pray for you? At my Catholic university the phrase was as common as Claddagh rings and miraculous medals. For some it was sincere, for many it seemed showy.
  • Trust, but verify
    With the conclusion of the Vatican’s summit on sexual abuse by clergy, what should we average Oregon Catholics in the pews do now? To quote Ronald Reagan, “Trust, but verify.”
  • Fast, but keep some calories for good works
    As adults we learn to give instead of giving up, or maybe we do both. We give our time, our efforts and our caring to volunteer in a classroom, or help a neighbor child with homework. Driving a carless person to get groceries is always appreciated, as is visiting a lonesome person of any age.
  • The New Evangelization
    With the advent of social media, when it is easier to reach masses at the push of a button, it is crucial that the church leap forward with these innovations to spread God’s word on a scale unseen before.
  • PHILADELPHIA — Whenever we make small exceptions to universal moral rules, we shouldn’t be surprised that the rules themselves can be quickly undermined. Establishing an “exception” in one case makes people think they’re due an exemption for their case as well. Certain norms of moral behavior, however, do not admit of any exceptions, and we risk undermining morality altogether if we don’t recognize them. Moral norms governing the protection of human life are one such example.
  • Is it practical?
    I applaud the directives as pointing us toward meaningful worship but wonder how it will be worked out in the real world.
  • Church credibility ruined by silent hypocrisy, sister tells summit
    VATICAN CITY — The hypocrisy of Catholic leaders who claimed to be guardians of morality yet remained silent about clerical sexual abuse has left the church's credibility in shambles, an African woman religious told bishops at the Vatican summit on abuse.
  • Drawing forth specific examples of racism, the bishops highlight the fact that often Hispanics and African Americans “face discrimination in hiring, housing, educational opportunities, and incarceration.
  • If we truly want to end the scourge of child sexual abuse — and I believe the church does — then we must understand pedophilia, hebephilia, and ephebophilia, otherwise the changes we institute will miss the mark with devastating consequences.
  • Proof in pudding
    Acupuncture was a great influence and I am thankful that God sent me there or I wouldn’t be writing you this missive today. 
  • Which is better?
    Which political philosophy is better for religious freedom
  • Truth is truth
    Despite what some argue, the teachings of the church do not change.
  • A letter instead
    Do you realize how many people will not have medical services because of this recommendation? 
  • Can we kill?

    Oregonians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty hold the viewpoint that a death penalty represents more violence. In fact, the death certificate on an executed person lists the cause of death as “homicide.”

  • Amid scandals, a way forward
    We should be as well informed as necessary. But how much information do we need to act responsibly as Catholics? Do we need, for example, to read the sordid details of every instance of abuse?
  • The message of dishonorable leaders gets lost
    A leader must behave and operate above reproach. It is a leader’s striving for noble perfection that indicates commitment and dedication to the organization and its people. 
  • Healing the hurts of porn
    Betrayal trauma hurts like nothing else. This is what many wives feel when they found out about their husband’s secret porn use.
  • My fellow Americans and fellow citizens of the world, the greatness of a nation is not measured by its military or economic power, but to the degree it is willing to help the poor and vulnerable. 
  • Conscience and the measles
    Holy Cross Brother William Dygert, superintendent of schools in the Archdiocese of Portland, reminds Catholic parents that the church does not support claiming a religious or personal exclusion when it comes to vaccines.
  • Extend the invitation

    Pope Francis has made it clear that we are not to ignore these brothers and sisters in need. They are other Christs. At the same time, they are human beings, and common sense tells us that our cash gifts might be used for alcohol or drugs. It hurts to participate in someone’s self-destruction. Blanchet House, a Catholic ministry in operation since the 1950s, has given us a better option.

  • No obligation
    The first principle for immigration in Catholic understanding is that people have a right to migrate. However, the responsibility to find a place to migrate to is theirs, and no individual or country has an obligation (moral or otherwise) to provide this.
  • Fear clericalism
    The new handbook for the liturgy which is described as adding “mystery and awe” is an example of what Pope Francis referenced as a basic problem in our church. The pope stated that sex abuse in our church stems from “elitism and clericalism, an inability to be near the people of God.”
  • Love handbook
    The Archdiocesan Liturgical Handbook addresses most of the issues that I have been praying about for many years.
  • Surrounded by prayer
    There are no answers. There is no understanding. However, I believe that God is with us in the suffering, in the questioning, and that there is power in prayer. 
  • Love for the Lord
    Is there any more love one can feel for a spouse than in the moment they’re exchanging vows? Most people would probably say, “Yes, actually.” And I’d agree. Still, there’s a beautiful innocence in the feeling of love I had while exchanging vows with my husband. There was love. There was excitement and there was pure joy.
  • This happened to me
    I am a simple man, a farmer, a family man. What would you do if this happened to you?
  • Mugs of love
    In what they call “Mugs of Love,” wonderful students from St. Mary’s Academy in Portland brought boxes of mugs to the St. Francis Dining Hall before Christmas.
  • No limits
    Labeling all preachers of the prosperity gospel as hucksters is convenient, but inaccurate. 
  • During the course of pregnancy, receiving an adverse prenatal diagnosis can be a tremendously jolting experience for parents. In severe cases, physicians may tell them that their unborn child has a condition that is “incompatible with life.”
  •  One of their campaign slogans was, “Don’t let them shove their religion down your throats,” as if millennia of hard-earned wisdom about life and death were a threat rather than a help. 
  • Her death was not sud­den, for disease had for some time been mak­ing inroads on her constitution until it finally did its insidious work.
  • Praying it will end
    An even greater concern than the terrible school shootings are the 30,000 people in the U.S. who die needlessly each year from gun violence including suicide, accidents and domestic disputes.
  • It’s a keeper
    What a joy it was to read Michael van Der Hout’s remembrance.
  • In the more than 30 annual Washington, D.C. Marches for Life I have participated in, I always think the current march is the largest ever. But since accurate figures are hard to come by, it usually comes down to taking a good guess. 
  • Cloaked attack
    Archbishop Sample should continue to work diligently to stamp out clergy abuse in this archdiocese as he did in the meeting with our young people. And he also should work with American bishops and the Holy See to incorporate lay commission review as “a universal and consistent practice in the whole worldwide church,” which the archbishop admits is the pope’s goal. 
  • Unforeseen problems with death penalty stance
    The pope’s decision also means Catholics will automatically be removed from juries handling capital crimes. Instead of having more influence on how criminals should be treated, Catholics will have less. 
  • Challenge us
    The Sentinel’s most-read articles seemed to be more “feel-good” stories than “do-good” challenges.
  • It’s ideology
    Readers of the Catholic Sentinel would have been better served if the writer had either restricted the article to simply reporting on Dr. Hruz’ presentation or written a full-length exposé of the transgender issue.
  • Ask them
     Holding a workshop to make decisions about how a marginalized group will be treated, without inviting members of the group, is exactly the kind of arrogance Pope Francis has criticized.
  • The benefits of Kavanaugh
    Now, three months after the addition of Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court, it’s clear he is good news for supporters of religious liberty, backers of the right to life and opponents of judicial activism.   
  • Honoring Mother Earth
    In Oregon, we can honor our Mother Earth by taking action and passing legislation that will protect our planet. The Clean Energy Jobs bill will help ensure a clean energy future for the state we love.
  • Hate on the rise
    Many Oregonians, especially those in hip Portland, see their state as a bastion of open-mindedness. Recent trends should squelch that perception and jolt Catholics into action.
  • Ode to parish life
    Where I wait in line for confession on Saturday afternoons and really am sorry for my sins, one of which is wishing I could hear what the person in front of me is saying in the confessional — This is a Catholic parish.
  • President Trump’s words are absolutely correct: “This is a humanitarian crisis, a crisis of the heart and a crisis of the soul.” But how he applies these words are absolutely incorrect.
  • From the Archives
    The informal dancing party given in Hibernia Hall by the Auxiliary to Ancient Order of Hibernians, last Fri­day, was a delightful success. 
  • Wills not magic
    The court has to consider the best interests of the child regardless of the wishes of the parents. The court could find that the parents made a poor choice. 
  • Earth needs care
    I wish this editorial could be published more widely so more people could read his ideas on the care of God’s planet. We all need to take this as a plan for care.
  • Knowledge unites
    Why does division exist regarding immigration within our Catholic community? It’s because of a lack of understanding of Scripture and Catholic social teaching.
  • In need of touch
    As the new year begins, I wonder how many people are in real need of a human touch. 
  • I like El Centinela

    Members of St. Anne Parish like El Centinela not only because of the information you provide but especially because it is in Spanish. 

  • No celebration
     An armistice is the final thing Jesus asked for at the Garden of Gethsemane, “Put your sword back in its sheath, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword” (Mt 26:52).
  • Trust the Lord
    Whatever happened to giving to the Lord — from the top of our income?
  • Accusers investigated
    So much for the suggestion that ‘Believe women’ is a remedy for allegations of misconduct. Instead, the old reliable presumption of innocence until proven otherwise must remain our guide. 
  • Holy Family into Egypt
    The couple and their toddler sat in a booth at the McDonalds on West Burnside, not far from St. Mary Cathedral. I couldn’t stop watching them. Their few words sounded so gentle, their faces were so filled with love and caring, and yet their demeanor revealed them to be so weary.
  • A year for ethics
    We begin a yearlong series that will explore everyday ethical situations, from watching pirated videos to imagining a love affair with someone in the office. We all face such situations. And like it or not, our choices make a difference to others and to our souls. 
  • Elections are our responsibility
    This case serves as one example of the profound effect elections and the Supreme Court can have on the way the Catholic Church is able to operate in this country.
  • As the saying goes, “Politics and religion don’t mix.” Although this cliché is espoused by many, you will not hear it from Pope Francis.
  • You missed it
     Labeling all preachers of the prosperity gospel as hucksters is convenient, but inaccurate.
  • Are Catholics more like cats or dogs?
    Knowing someone’s preferred pet tells a lot about the personality. I think it’s about time someone asked, “Are Catholics more like cats or dogs?”
  • Gene-edited babies and the runaway train of IVF
    One of the great tragedies of our age has been our tone deafness to the evils of IVF.
  • How donating your distributions can lower your tax bill
    Do you have an IRA account? Are you 70 ½ or older and withdrawing your required minimum distributions (RMDs) from your IRA account every year? If so, and you are donating money to charities and the church, you might be paying more in taxes than you need to.
  • Fifty years ago on Christmas Eve (Dec. 24, 1968) the crew of Apollo 8  entered lunar orbit and began circling the moon – the first time in history for humans to visit another world (see: https://bit.ly/2EkLJda). 
  • My Christmas crush on Sister Mary Athanasia
    Joel and I were surprised and embarrassed that our teacher probably overheard me singing her praises. So we did what shy nine-year-old boys would do: we ran home to hide until the problem went away. 
  • If we confront life with pure hearts and a simple faith, it might be true. And so on those days that seem the most hopeless, there’s hope.
  • The church turns our funds into the loving, protective presence of Jesus Christ.
  • Protecting life
    On behalf of Councils 1594 (Medford), 11258 (Central Point), and 13407 (Ashland), a letter from our Supreme Knight Carl Anderson was read and checks adding up to $24,101 were presented to Beth Sheets, executive director of the Pregnancy Center. 
  • The right man
    Pope Francis is the right man in the right place at the right time. I hope he is not discouraged by “old wineskins” from taking actions he sees fit.
  • Be with them
    Unless we lead with compassion for the women who feel like they have no other choice but to abort, hearts will never change.
  • Futility of war