Commentaries

In criticisms of two popes, a whiff of hypocrisy

Greg Erlandson remembers the excitement and the critiques leveled at Pope John Paul II, and sees similar "rhymes of history" with Pope Francis. More humility and less protest seems to be in order.

A Thanksgiving place setting for those who won’t come home

Holiday dinners might be missing relatives who have died, loved ones lost to addiction, babies who never got to be held, families divided by divorce. Laura Kelly Fanucci writes that even in absence, we can love in the present tense.

Can a smart person have faith? It’s complicated

To evangelize people in a scientific age, we should re-present the living treasures of the church, writes Father Thomas Dailey. For example, young people are attracted to eucharistic adoration, sign of a simple faith that they wish to share.

Gratitude is good for you, and it makes you happy

Once you start to find blessings in your life, they multiply, writes Maria-Pia Negro Chin. Giving thanks is good for our hearts (lower stress) and our relationships as we share the blessings we celebrate this month.

He might not be ‘brother’s keeper,’ but wife wants to see empathy

A woman is moved by the shooting in Las Vegas and inspired by those who aided victims. But her husband doesn't care about people he doesn't know. Deacon Paul and Helen McBlain discuss how to heal their rift.

From sexual harassment to the pay gap, America has changed little

Things have changed since Effie Caldarola was young. But when it comes to unequal pay for women, the abuse of power by men and our own attitudes, society hasn't come a long way, she writes.

Young folks, listen up: The elderly have much to tell you

For a culture that idolizes youth, it's tempting to keep old people "in the closet," as Pope Francis has said. But they have wisdom, so young people should go out of their way to listen patiently, advises Elise Italiano.

Encourage the value of travel, don’t restrict it

"Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind," wrote the Roman philosopher Seneca. Father Eugene Hemrick sees the need to view all people as a gift, not a threat, whether we travel to them or they come here.

How to stay sober and still have fun at social gatherings

Recovering from addiction doesn't mean you have to shun parties, writes Adam Cook. With some advance planning, you can enjoy get-togethers while protecting your sobriety.

New media reshapes us and taps our religious memory

If we were "amusing ourselves to death" in the television era, then we may be reconnecting to our cultural memory in the internet age, speculates Brett Robinson. The Catholic Church is sitting on a treasure trove of memory that is waiting to be rediscovered.