When Trappist Fr. Matt Torpey speaks of his mentor, teacher and friend Thomas Merton, the words flow like a gentle stream.
I'm not a football fan, but I was fascinated by recent polling numbers published by the Public Religion Research Institute on religion and football.
Like many commentators, I too worry that the church's contraception policy causes great and unnecessary harm nowhere more than in the third world.
I am mourning the loss and celebrating the new life of a great friend, Joseph Grilliot, who passed into eternal life Tuesday at his home in Roeland Park, Kan. His son, Marvin, and his wife, Rachel, and a loving niece, Barbara Martin, were at his bedside.
In Paul's first epistle to Timothy, he specifies women once in his advice about qualifications for overseers and deacons: "In the same way, the women are to be worthy of respect, not malicious talkers but temperate and trustworthy in everything" (1 Timothy 3:11). Footnotes in the New International Version suggest Paul may have been referring either to the wives of deacons and overseers, or to women like Phoebe, a deacon of the church in Cenchreae whom Paul personally greets in Romans 16:1.
Appreciation: I still remember my very first class with Fr. Richard McBrien. Two insights from that day in 1997 have stayed with me.
Just Catholic: The New York Times paints a cold, hard picture of the church. But the church can fairly easily end a marriage for substantial or administrative reasons.
A marble frieze inside the Supreme Court building includes the Prophet Muhammad. His inclusion was controversial.
Appreciation: So many of us saw in Dick McBrien a genuine spokesman for our ideas and aspirations about a church styled with Second Vatican Council ideals.
It may not have a name, but the program that ministers to death row inmates at the Tecumseh State Correctional Institution in Tecumseh, Neb., is making an impact.
Certainly moved by the program are Deacon Leo Bistak and his wife, Nancy, of Lawrence, Kan. The couple travels almost 300 miles roundtrip once every three months to participate.
"We sit around in a large room with about eight death row prisoners and about 10 of us who come in," Leo said. "We have some sandwiches and talk with them for about three hours."