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Guest Columnists

  • Dialogue: Essential for peaceful relationships

    According to The New York Times, during a White House luncheon in 1954 Winston Churchill said, “To jaw-jaw ([talk-talk) always is better than to war-war.”
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  • A Lenten lesson to practice throughout life

    On a recent trip out West, I once again became aware of one of St. John XXIII’s reasons for initiating the Second Vatican Council: to encourage the church to adjust to changing times.
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  • The last trimester of life: The spirituality of aging

    In Sacred Scripture our Lord reminds us in Psalms, Chapter 90 that God turns humanity back to dust and that “Seventy is the sum of our years, or 80, if we are strong; Most of them are toil and sorrow; they pass quickly, and we are gone.”
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  • The greatness of being you

    Most people never think of themselves as great, but if you think about it, you are quite extraordinary.
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  • The sanctuary of St. Boniface as the tabernacle of the suffering Christ

    In ancient times, the tabernacle was the tent that housed the divine presence among the Israelites; today the word is used to describe the container that holds the reserved consecrated Eucharist in church.
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  • A compelling cathedral

    Imagine three medieval workers standing around a large vat, vigorously mixing its contents. Though they are all engaged in the same task, each has a different answer when asked just what they are doing. One responds, “I’m mixing clay”; the second says, “I’m making bricks”; but the third boasts, “I’m building a cathedral.”
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  • Be compassionate

    We have a loving and compassionate God and Jesus calls us to practice these virtues in our lives. This is our mission as Christians. Here are some practical ways to be more holy and compassionate so as to fulfill Christ’s command.
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  • The darkest day of the human experience

    The darkest day in the life of a human being is the death of a loved one – be it a parent, grandparent, sibling, child, family member, close friend, significant other or even a family pet. Grief is the human suffering caused by that death.
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  • The spiritual meaning of suffering and death

    Anyone can commit suicide. It’s done all the time. But recently we have seen a movement toward legalization of assisted suicide.
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  • The way of the cross

    Writing a column on social justice and peace offers me plenty of timely issues to choose from. And I always truly sense from God the exact issue he desires that I write on.
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  • Ricci Institute promotes study of Christianity in China

    This is one in a series of articles on the mission church in China, highlighting historic and current work by clergy, religious and laity from the San Francisco area. Passionist Father Robert Carbonneau, who is executive director, of the U.S. Catholic China Bureau in Berkeley and resides with the De LaSalle Christian Brothers at Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory in San Francisco, suggested the series “to encourage San Francisco Catholics to learn about and respect the contribution of Chinese Catholic identity.”
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  • Beating swords into plowshares

    “In the days to come, the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established as the highest mountain and raised above the hills,” writes the prophet Isaiah.
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  • Confession for what ails us

    Recently, I went with my family and our grandson Jack for his first confession. It was a happy affair.
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  • Letting love in during Lent

    My love goes out to all of you this holy season of Lent. Now that I am an old man, I see more clearly that love is the only thing that really matters in life.
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  • Unsung stories highlight National Catholic Sisters Week

    Belinda Monahan has analyzed more than 100,000 animal bones in Armenia dating back from the early Bronze Age (1,200 B.C.) to the medieval period.
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  • Catholic education: The best investment

    When I was asked by Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone to help him in his ministry at the parish of St Anthony Padua, I somehow had an idea on the pastoral and financial accomplishments made by the people of God guided by the Franciscan friars for over a century.
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  • Thoughts on physician-assisted suicide

    In college I wrote a medical ethics paper on a play titled “Whose Life Is It Anyway?” That old paper came to mind recently when I learned that the campaign for physician assisted suicide has been gaining momentum.
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  • Pew opportunities

    How do we make church a welcoming place? There are many strategies: introductions, nametags, friendly ushers, donuts after Mass.
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  • Vaccination ethics

    A measles outbreak, the safety of childhood vaccinations, and the role of parental rights in choosing to vaccinate or not to vaccinate is all over the news.
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  • Fidelity learning labs

    Society is awash in infidelity! Lies, cheating and broken promises are the stuff of media headlines and these infidelities grab our attention and rouse our ire.
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