Q. About five years ago, my work transferred me out of state. At the time, I was attending my local Catholic church, which was clustered with two other parishes. We had a vibrant Catholic community with Masses each day of the week, weeknight Bible study and prayer groups and, on weekends, multiple Masses from which […]
Q. Lately, I find myself asking quite a bit from God — perhaps too much. I ask for things for myself, since my own life has fallen a bit off course — as well as for friends and family members, some of whom have serious health problems. I make sure to thank God for the […]
What you intend when you say something may not be what hearers understand. Although you mean to implore Christ’s help by calling out spontaneously the word “Jesus,” someone listening might well think instead that you are expressing surprise or dismay — which would contribute to the growing disrespect for the Lord’s name.
Q. I have several very devout and pious friends who believe that God creates children with birth defects to become his “victim souls” because God needs suffering in order to make up for what was lacking in the suffering of Christ in the work of redemption. They quote to me the account of the man […]
I write to ask for guidelines on the Third Commandment — keeping holy the Lord’s day. I do not consider some of the things that I do to be work — cooking, for example, minor cleanups, mowing, trimming, weeding. Does the church look upon all chores as work?
Q. I was baptized and confirmed in the Catholic Church. When I was younger, I served as an altar boy for several years. About 12 years ago, I got married in a Methodist church. I never had the marriage “convalidated” in the Catholic Church since my wife was against involving another member of the clergy. […]
Q. We live in a rural area with several small churches of various denominations. For many years during Lent and Advent, weekly ecumenical services have been held at different churches — along with a large interfaith service at Thanksgiving and one in June as a baccalaureate for area high school graduates. The former pastors of […]
I have always had a great fear of confession. Once I got in there, I would be so scared that I would just say the first thing I could think of, in order to get it over with. As a result, I have never really made a good confession in my entire life.
Q. I have noticed that more often than not, the Confiteor (“I confess”) is skipped at Mass, and the priest or deacon goes right into the “Lord, have mercy” prayer (Kyrie). I have inquired as to why they do this but cannot get an answer. In the Tridentine Mass, the Confiteor was important enough to […]
How is it that some people who give out Communion say your name before they say “the body of Christ,” but not everyone gets called by name?
Q. Please tell me how Catholics justify hospice care, especially withholding food and water from the patient. Doesn’t this starve the patient to death? And doesn’t the heavy medication they use actually cause death? (Illinois) A. Patients are typically admitted into hospice care when curative treatment has been deemed futile and the prognosis is that […]
Q. Pope Francis published his encyclical on global warming in June 2015. What actions has the church initiated to put his recommendations into effect? Are we waiting for more guidance from the Holy Father, or should we be looking for something from our bishops and priests? (Centertown, Missouri) A. Pope Francis did, as you say, […]