I don’t mean to be a downer, but an unhealthy diet is the leading risk factor for chronic diseases in Canada. This has been the case for the past two decades, according to research cited in the medical journal Canadian Family Physician, the official publication of the College of Family Physicians of Canada.
It is a frightening world when those with power assume they can dictate to those without how they must think and what they must say.

In Lessons in Hope: My Unexpected Life with St. John Paul II, Baltimore-born papal biographer George Weigel reflects in a highly personal way on the 15 years he devoted to chronicling the life and times and impact of John Paul II in Witness to Hope (1999) and The End and the Beginning (2010). It is a story that emphasizes repeatedly and powerfully the idea of providence.

On March 13, 2013 the new pope, a surprise selection, received thunderous cheers when introduced to thousands of pilgrims packed into a drizzly St. Peter’s Square. It was a precedent-setting night. Argentine Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio became the first South American pope, the first Jesuit pope and the first pope named Francis.

As the Vatican prepares for an important Synod of Bishops on youth, an American organization has released a study that says young people who reject the Church typically fall into one of three categories: the injured, the drifters or the dissenters.

Last May, my wife, daughters and I stayed at a resort on a First Nations reserve on Vancouver Island to celebrate my mother-in-law’s 80th birthday. The last night we were there, my mother-in-law moved into town, and my wife and I slept in the yurt where she had stayed.

Since his stunning decision five years ago to renounce the papacy, Pope Emeritus Benedict has been spent his time praying, reading, strolling, enjoying music and welcoming friends. He has stayed far from the Vatican limelight and, as he promised, clear of any words or deeds that might suggest even an inkling of interference in the work of his successor.

Few dossiers that cross the Pope’s desk are more challenging than the thick, sad file on sexual abuse. It’s a file Pope Francis inherited from his two predecessors and one he pledged to handle with urgency, compassion and transparency.

The disciplines of Lent — prayer, fasting and almsgiving — are an exercise in conscience formation. Lent is much more than conscience formation, but it is that.
We begin the season of Lent with Ash Wednesday on Feb. 14, only a few weeks after our celebration of the Christmas season. That’s early, so we may feel that we are not “ready” yet.  
OTTAWA – On Feb. 2 in Ottawa’s Notre Dame Cathedral, I knew we would have a special liturgical experience. After all, a new altar for the cathedral was being dedicated, a beautiful rite that only happens once or twice in the life of a church. What I didn’t expect was something utterly and wholly unique.