July 1, 2016

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The Dual Citizenship of Catholic Americans

July 4 is the celebration of Independence Day, the birthday of our country, the United States of America, and our citizenship in this great nation. This national holiday is an occasion to reflect on the nature of dual citizenship, how a Christian is a citizen of a universal spiritual kingdom, the Kingdom of God, and an earthly kingdom, our country, the United States.

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June 24, 2016

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St. Cyril of Alexandria (370-444), Bishop and Doctor

St. Cyril was born in Alexandria, Egypt, in 370 AD. His family was of the noble class. His uncle was Patriarch Theophilus of Alexandria. Cyril received a classical and theological education under his uncle, who eventually ordained him to the priesthood. A number of years later, in 412 AD, he succeeded his uncle as the patriarch or bishop of Alexandria.

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June 17, 2016

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A six week series from the letter to the Galatians

The second readings for the Sundays of Week Nine through Week Fourteen of Ordinary Time, Year C, are taken from St. Paul’s letter to the Galatians.

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June 9, 2016

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St. Barnabas, apostle and martyr

Barnabas was born on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus. He was a Jew of the tribe of Levi. He was given the name Joses or Joseph, but the apostles changed his name to Barnabas, which means the “son of encouragement” or the “son of consolation” (Acts 4:36).

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June 7, 2016

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An Irish Catholic girl reflects on St. Peter’s Square in Rome

I came expecting crowds and gimcracks and jabbering people with fanny packs and cameras. I am surprised. I was wrong. I cannot help but be moved by this place.

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June 3, 2016

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St. Norbert, Bishop

Norbert was born in 1080 in Xanten, a town in western Germany. His father was Count Heribert of Gennep, his mother Hedwig of Guise. His family was both nobility and Christian. As a young man he was ordained a subdeacon, not because of his faith, but to gain the advantage of clerical position and a financial subsidy from the church. He became a spiritual advisor to Emperor Henry V in Cologne, and he reveled in a life of political influence, luxury, and wealth.

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June 3, 2016

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Transubstantiation: A fundamental Catholic belief about the Eucharist

Transubstantiation is a theological term derived from two Latin roots, trans (prefix), a preposition that means “over” or “across,” and substantia (root), a noun that means “substance.” To transubstantiate is to change one substance into another. The initial substance is bread and wine, and it changes into a new and different substance, the Body and Blood of Christ. It is no longer bread, but the Body of Christ under the appearance of bread; and no longer wine, but the Blood of Christ under the appearance of wine. The physical appearance and chemical composition remain unchanged, but the substance is entirely changed.

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May 26, 2016

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Wisconsin turkey season ends with a chorus of gobbling

There I was on the edge of the woods along a ridge in Wisconsin Tuesday, the last day of the spring turkey season. It had been a very tough spring. I did manage to shoot a young tom, called a jake, during Season D, but my other bonus tags went unfilled. The gobbling was way […]

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May 13, 2016

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The fruits of the Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is one of the three persons of the Triune God, the Most Holy Trinity, and St. Paul in his letter to the Galatians provides a list of nine fruits of the Spirit: “Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, [and] self-control” (Gal 5:22,23).

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April 29, 2016

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St. James the Lesser, Apostle and Martyr

There are two St. James among the original twelve apostles: St. James the Greater whose feast is on July 25, and St. James the Less, the Lesser, or the Minor, whose feast is on May 3 and shared with St. Philip.

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