Jesus came to be one with us

Presentation of the Lord (Year A) Feb. 2 (Malachi 3:1-4; Psalm 24; Hebrews 2:10-11, 13b-18; Luke 2:22-40)

The prophet Malachi was a rather disappointed and angry man. It was some time in the late sixth and early fifth centuries BC. The exiles had returned from Babylon but the prophesied rebirth and restoration of the nation had not occurred. The nation was struggling to rebuild its economic and political life.

At Rome parish, pope meets with migrants, homeless, youths

ROME - Meeting 80 immigrants assisted by members of a Rome parish, Pope Francis said leaving one's homeland is always painful, but faith can give one the strength to keep going.

Vatican panel says violence is 'greatest corruption of religion' 

VATICAN CITY - Violence is the "greatest corruption of religion," while belief in a single God is the "principle and source of love between human beings," says a new study by a Vatican advisory panel of theologians.

Mexican bishop rebukes government for crackdown on self-defense groups

NUEVA ITALIA, Mexico - A Mexican bishop has rebuked the federal government for sending soldiers to grab the guns of the self-defense groups formed to fight off violent drug cartels and criminal gangs in the western state of Michoacan.

Spiritual values will guide us on our way

Third Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A) Jan. 26 (Isaiah 9:1-4; Psalm 27; 1 Corinthians 1:10-13, 17-18; Matthew 4:12-23)

It is extremely difficult to be joyful or have hope in the midst of ruin and pain. The land of Zebulun and Naphtali — part of Galilee — had been conquered by the brutal Assyrians around 733 B.C. and made into a province of their empire. The land had been devastated and the northern kingdom of Israel snuffed out. In other words, there was little cause for optimism or joy — the future looked very bleak indeed.

10 books that caught my eye in 2013

De gustibus non est disputandum. That’s a famous line from St. Augustine wherein he suggests that taste is subjective and that what one person fancies might not be to another person’s liking. Under that canopy I would like to recommend the following books to you. Among the books that I read in 2013, these 10 stayed with me in ways that the others didn’t.

Pope picks Quebec's Gerald Lacroix to become a cardinal

Pope Francis has selected Quebec archbishop Gerald Lacroix to become Canada's newest cardinal.

Pope says abortion, hunger, environmental damage threaten peace

VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis said world peace requires the defense of human dignity from violations such as world hunger, human trafficking and abortion.

Pope to moms: It's OK to breast-feed in public, even in Sistine Chapel

VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis assured mothers that breast-feeding their babies in public, even during a papal Mass in the Sistine Chapel, is OK.

Vatican to host world leaders in push to end Syrian conflict

VATICAN CITY - With more than 100,000 dead and millions displaced in a brutal civil war, Pope Francis has made repeated pleas for peace in Syria. But more than just call for peace he has taken steps to bring an end to the violence.

Priest says hitching ride on popemobile was invite to hit road for God

VATICAN CITY - When Father Fabian Baez booked his trip to Rome, he didn't have an appointment to meet with the pope, so he gave himself ample time in the Eternal City to be able to arrange some way to see him.