Commentaries

What you want to be when you grow up, at any age

There's one question we've all faced countless times: What do you want to be when you grow up? Some people know the answer at a young age. Others live their entire lives seeking but not finding. No matter where you are in that journey, you'll learn the answer is often more than an occupation; it's a state of happiness. Discovering the person you want to become is all about knowing who you are.

The image, the message and ‘whatever it takes’ on gun control

In the wake of school and workplace shootings, law enforcement is shifting from early recommendations to cooperate and now they're advising school officials and students to physically confront attackers as a last line of defense. This leaves an impression that something is being done. Perhaps it's easier than eliminating the many devices with which people kill people. When will we hear of the Aggressive Victims Act?

How babies show racism is alive and well in America

As I write this column, I am keeping an eye on my 17-month-old great niece, Gabriella. The child has an infectious smile, and she bestows kisses on my cheek, a distraction technique, I soon realize, as she reaches across my face to snatch off the first of my gold clip-on earrings. Gabby’s eyes appear blue […]

Why watching TV can be bad — or good — for children

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- It's bad enough that parents realize it's not good to let their kids have so much screen time in front of the television, the computer, the tablet or video games. What's worse is that parents themselves feel powerless to do much about it.

Why is Catholic press needed? Just see the secular chatter about the pope

A steady diet of secular news coverage leaves Catholics intellectually malnourished and worse than uninformed. The recent coverage of the pope is a reminder that without a vigorous Catholic press, without an honest and engaged Catholic media presence, the church will have little chance of making itself heard.

Pope’s timing just right as he lacks the energy to meet responsibility

When Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was elected pope in 2005 at age 78, I was working at Loyola College (now Loyola University) in Baltimore. A local radio announcer, who was on the air during the late afternoon commute, telephoned me to discuss this breaking news with him on the air. “He’s a little old for the job, isn’t he?” asked the host, who had never met me before. “He’s exactly one month older than I am,” I replied. “Well, I have to say he looked pretty good all in white there on television when he stepped out onto that balcony,” the radio host remarked a bit defensively. “And did you know he was in the German army and a prisoner of war in the second world war?” he asked. “I may have guarded him,” I said, just to pull the announcer’s leg a bit; “I was in the U.S. army in Germany at that time,” although Ratzinger the soldier had slipped away from military service just before I arrived in his homeland as part of the army of occupation after Germany surrendered in 1945.

A Lenten challenge to make us take a long hard look

The Sunday paper reported the death of Reg Presley. The name may not sound familiar. Presley was a member of the musical group The Troggs, and provided the raspy voice that sang "Wild Thing." Remember now? If you grew up in the 1960s or 1970s you couldn't forget the song. "Wild thing, you make my heart sing." The abbreviated obituary from The New York Times called the song "a paean to teenage lust." Mr. Presley was 71 and died after a series of strokes.

Less than a perfect union

The state of the union is not so strong. The state of the union is not to be confused with the condition of the country, perhaps a more apt title for the presidential speech typically delivered to a joint session of Congress each year. The union, in the sense of community, is far from unified. It is divided on many core issues and beliefs.

A voice that proposed love and fulfillment

The following editorial appeared in the Feb. 13 issue of The Record, newspaper of the Archdiocese of Perth, Australia. It was written by Peter Rosengren, the editor. It seems nearly impossible to say anything that will be unique or new about the most talked about news of the week, and probably of the year. However, […]

Facing up to the ‘epidemic’ of military suicides

No one can appreciate the unimaginable pain that is the ultimate explanation for such a tragic action. No one, therefore, can sit in judgment on a person whose choice cannot be fathomed and whose life can only be remembered but not restored, and whose pain we simply cannot understand.