At first reading, it may seem that there is little connection between the first reading and the Gospel. The Maccabees text reports on the successive deaths of seven sons and their mother, each of whom died as a martyr for their faith. In the Gospel, the Levirate law governs the conversation between Jesus and some Sadducees. This law provided for the marriage of a widow to her deceased husband's brother to ensure the continuance of the family line (see Deuteronomy 25:5; Genesis 38:8).
OCCUPY RELIGION: THEOLOGY OF THE MULTITUDE
By Joerg Rieger and Kwok Pui-lan
Published by Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, $21.95
Soul Seeing: Two years ago, Soul Seeing first appeared in NCR. The column isn't about changing the world, but changing the way we see the world.
Earlier this year, news outlets reported that the Internal Revenue Service may have been targeting certain individuals and organizations and subjecting them to unnecessary audits. Given many people's less-than-positive attitude regarding taxation, this news evoked quite a bit of criticism and many a negative remark. But the aversion to taxes is not a new development. Through the centuries, many have commented on this necessary but often unwieldy burden. Will Rogers suggested that the system of taxing people and their property was primordial.
We say: Auxiliary Bishop Robert McElroy in an essay in America magazine outlines a compelling argument for recalibrating the church's involvement in the public square.
After having taught Scripture for almost 50 years, I'm still puzzled by one constant phenomenon: Some people find God's inspired word to be one of the most important aspects of their faith, while others can live their faith very well without it.
The re-emergence of the late Chicago Cardinal Joseph Bernardin as a model for the American Catholic future is a surprise of Francis' papacy.
Soul Seeing: We placed a Buddha outside our kitchen window so we can look out and focus on peace.
When I began studying Scripture years ago, I also began giving some scriptural confessional penances. But I'd always first inquire, "Do you have a Bible?"
If there was any hesitancy in the response, I'd relieve the tension by lightheartedly suggesting, "Maybe, as a birthday gift next year, you could buy yourself a Bible. But in the meantime ..."
Most U.S. Catholics are not looking for spirituality online; in fact, half of them are unaware the church even has an online presence, according to researchers at Georgetown University's Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate.
The most widely used communication tool in Catholic church is the parish bulletin, followed by a diocesan newspaper or magazine -- in print form -- which one in four adult Catholics has read in the last three months, CARA reports.