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Entries related to: hope

Crisis and Crossroads

As I write this, COVID-19 is in a kind of second wave across the country. I have no way of knowing what will happen next week or next month. What I do know is that the monumental crisis of this pandemic presents us with great danger and great opportunity—and, therefore, with consequential choices between fear and hope.
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Notes from a Friar: The Mysterious Workings of Grace

When speaking of the word grace, it is important to clarify what grace really is. Grace is not something that we get from God. Grace is actually God working within our whole person. Sometimes you hear people speak as though God would ladle out grace. Rather, grace is the presence of God within us. Grace is God’s presence and strength given to us at particular times when we are called to act virtuously.
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Seven Things Catholics Should Know about Suicide

So many people live with the pain of losing a loved one to suicide. I rarely go for even a week without receiving a letter, an email, or a phone call from someone who has just lost a family member to suicide. In virtually every case, there is a corresponding sorrow that there really isn’t a lot of material out there, religious or secular, to help console those left bereaved. Those left behind literally gasp for human and theological oxygen.
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How Jesus' Disciples Handled Fear

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic that's taken over our newsfeeds and our peace of mind, something even more discouraging has developed in its wake: fear. Father Roger Lopez, OFM, thinks of the disciples after the resurrection. They're isolated and afraid. But Jesus visits them in that room and says four words the disciples need to hear, "Peace be with you."
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A Friar on the Power of Hope

COVID-19 continues to dominate the news. Many have surely felt hopeless in the face of this pandemic. And the loss of hope is a terrible thing. It can be lethal. But for most of us, a deficiency of it shows itself in more subtle ways: discouragement, putting our trust in everything but God, or focusing too much on the negative in the world. But hope is alive. We have to believe that.
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Calling Out to God

This blog was supposed to be about something completely different. I had planned on writing about recognizing the many blessings in our lives. But on the day that I sat down to write it, I got word that someone I had known for most of my life had died the previous day in a car wreck. Like so many other people in my life, we had reconnected through Facebook. At the time of her death, she was in the midst of undergoing treatment for cancer. She had gotten married just a few weeks before the wreck. It wasn’t fair.
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Facing Life's Monsters

It’s October, and the long sunlight in the afternoons and the coming chill in the air sing the approach of autumn. Fall has always been my favorite season, with hayrides and visits to the apple orchards south of Chicago with my family. It brings me deep joy.
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Encountering Darkness, Rising from Grief

I ask the dark, have you come for my heart? I stand at their gravesides in the blue dress someone found for me to wear. The sleeves are stiff, irritating the tender skin of my empty arms. I watch. I am a girl in a dress the color of the sky, and all that remains from the threshing floor of my life are the names of things.
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Thomas Merton’s Message of Hope

Thomas Merton continues to speak with a voice that is insightful, compelling, and prophetic. His extensive writings provide ample scope for any compiler who attempts to set before the reader a coherent introduction to his thought, his questions, his concerns, his passions. Words mattered: they were Merton’s stock-in-trade, his first and most characteristic art form.
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A Doctor Saves Flint, Michigan

Image: CNS. Everywhere she goes now, from testifying before the US Congress to the coffee shop, Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha is recognized—and thanked. Hanna-Attisha, the director of Flint, Michigan’s Hurley Hospital Pediatric Residency Program, was named to the 2016 TIME 100, the magazine’s list of the world’s most influential people. PEN America, a group of writers dedicated to human rights, chose Hanna-Attisha and Flint mother/activist LeeAnne Walters to receive the 2016 Freedom of Expression Courage Award. (Last year, PEN honored the surviving staffers of the Paris attack on the weekly Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine.) 
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