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Archive for ‘catholic beliefs’

Advent Calendars

Advent calendars are a time-honored way to help children–and parents–count down the days until Christmas. Check out the Family Resource Calendar, a new resource developed especially for the Year of Faith.

What is a Synod?

What is a Synod?

This month representatives of the world’s Catholic bishops are meeting in Rome to discuss the New Evangelization. The meeting is called a synod, and it’s an important event in the life of the Church.

Families and the Year of Faith

Pope Benedict XVI has called for a Year of Faith starting October 11. It’s a wonderful opportunity to deepen one’s personal faith, as well as renew the faith life of the family. Here are a few ideas to get started.

Who Are the Franciscans?

On October 4 the Church celebrates the feast of Francis of Assisi, one of the best-known and beloved saints. His spiritual descendants include communities of men and women all over the world.


If your parish has a permanent deacon or two, you may wonder who these men are and what they do. Read more about the order of deacons, which was revived by the Second Vatican Council.

Eucharistic Adoration

Many parishes in the U.S. sponsor Eucharistic adoration, a devotion that has become more widespread in recent years. Here’s a look at how the practice started.

Time for a Retreat?

Time for a Retreat?

Do you feel the need to jump start your spiritual life? Or have you realized that quiet time and space may help you to hear God’s call more clearly? A spiritual retreat may be just the answer.

What does “The Assumption” Mean?

What does “The Assumption” Mean?

On August 15 the Catholic Church celebrates one of its most important feasts, the Assumption of Mary into heaven. Although the doctrine of the Assumption was not formally proclaimed until 1950, the Church’s belief that Mary was taken body and soul into heaven has existed since the early centuries.

A Saint for Our Times

Not all saints lived a long time ago, in an era vastly different from our own. Edith Stein, a convert from Judaism, was a remarkably gifted scholar and nun who became caught up in the modern horror of the Holocaust.


Catholics love blessings; there is a blessing for almost anything and anyone. But what is a blessing and how is it effective?

Contemplative Prayer

Contemplative Prayer

Prayer is essential to Christian life, and the Catholic tradition offers various ways to pray. Many Christians have benefited from contemplative prayer, which is less about saying things to God than listening to what God is saying to us.

What Is Religious Liberty?

The celebration of American independence reminds us of the many freedoms we enjoy but sometimes take for granted. One of them, religious liberty, has been in the news in recent months. What does the Church teach about “our first, most cherished liberty”?

Why Martyrs Are Important

On Saturday, June 30, the Church celebrates the Feast of the First Martyrs of the Church of Rome. What makes a person a martyr and why does the Church consider them important?

Selling the Sacred

People sometimes wonder why a parish may request a donation for hosting a wedding. Fr. Rice explains that sacraments are not for sale, and why the Church discourages commerce in sacred objects.

Where’s My Parish?

Couples who wish to marry in the Catholic Church are advised to contact the parish priest of the bride or groom to get the process started. But couples move around and they may not know what parish they’re in. Fr. Rice explains how everyone is part of a parish.

The Trinity

The Trinity is a central doctrine of Christianity, but most Christians struggle to explain it. Fr. Rice offers some helpful insights.

What is the Sacrament of Confirmation?

Spring is the season of confirmations. Confirmation is a Catholic sacrament, but it’s also seen as a rite of passage. Fr. Rice explains why these two realities can be in tension.

The Common Good: A Call to Charity and Justice

Our series on Catholic Social Teaching concludes with a consideration of the principle of the Common Good.

Catholic Social Teaching: Subsidiarity

Catholic Social Teaching: Subsidiarity

Our mini-course on Catholic Social Teaching continues with the principle of subsidiarity.

Solidarity: Working for the Common Good

Solidarity: Working for the Common Good

Our look at Catholic Social Teaching continues with a consideration of the principle of solidarity. In a society organized for competition, what does it mean to stress cooperation and harmony?

Catholic Social Teaching: Human Dignity

Catholic Social Teaching: Human Dignity

Catholic social teaching has been called the Church’s best-kept secret. This week we begin a four-part series on the principles of CST.

The Easter Vigil

For the Catholic Church, the Easter Vigil is its most important feast. Participants joyously celebrate Christ’s rising from the dead and welcome new members into the Church. But the Easter Vigil doesn’t just celebrate something God did in the past; it also celebrates what God is doing in our lives today.

How Do Catholics Observe Holy Week?

The most solemn week of the Christian calendar begins on Palm Sunday, April 1. During these days leading up to Easter, the Catholic Church will celebrate some of its most moving liturgies, including the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday and the observance of the Lord’s Passion on Good Friday.

How To Go To Confession

How To Go To Confession

It’s Lent, when many Catholics receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation in order to prepare for Easter. Has it been a while since you’ve gone to confession? Here are six simple tips that will make it easier to return to the sacrament.

What Does the Church Say About Contraception?

What Does the Church Say About Contraception?

What does the Catholic Church really teach about married love, contraception, and Natural Family Planning? Read our FAQs and learn the facts.

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