Faith plays a central role in a lot of the decisions we make, including our career choices. Common questions we ask might include, “What brings meaning to my life?” or “What is God’s purpose for me on this Earth?”

Many youth want a job that enables them to live out their faith on a daily basis. But the challenge is not in finding a job that lets you live your faith but rather in enabling yourself to live your faith in any job. Ever since I graduated from high school, I have worked in a number of different jobs that have provided me with many experiences and growing pains. What I discovered along the way is that I like to help people and in doing so, I developed myself as a servant leader.

Finding a funeral's beauty

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Recently, I was able to interview a family that was donating a large amount of money to a school in memory of their teenage son who died in a terrible car wreck in February. Tears came to the eyes of his father as soon as he stepped into the room to talk to me, and later, after they’d made their presentation, this couple held each other and cried in front of me and two teachers.

The future is in our hands

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It’s almost the end of June. Usually in a student’s mind this means the school year is coming to an end. I’ve often simply seen it this way until now, as this will be the last month of my high school career. I will never have to deal with hard-to-understand math teachers or the 12-minute run our gym teachers force us to do.

Yet, in some ways, no matter how nagging some of those memories are, they always seemed to bring a smile to my face and a good laugh with all my friends. But do the good times stop as soon as graduation is over? I hope not.

Catholic slice misrepresented

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Everybody goes through phases where they think nobody understands them, myself included. But over the last few years, and recently especially, I have begun to feel that many people just don’t seem to understand my religion.

Why? I’m not a member of some obscure cult; I’m a Catholic. Catholicism is a major world religion and definitely a good slice of the religious pie here in Canada. But somehow many people still have no idea what it’s all about. In school I often get asked why we Catholics “worship the Pope or the saints,” why we “force baptism on babies” instead of letting them choose later and why we “call that piece of bread God.”

March for Life more than a day off of school

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In May, I joined more than 20 other students from my school for the 12th annual March for Life in Ottawa. I joined expecting a nice three-day trip to Ottawa and little more. I was very mistaken.

Just after noon on May 14 the rally began on Parliament Hill, as did the rain and wind. Though somewhat unpleasant at first I took it as just a test from God and perhaps many others did as well since no one seemed to mind.

Dealing with death and loss

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On April 10 I was getting ready for another tedious day of school, looking forward to the long Easter weekend and preparing myself to speak with family members who would be particularly emotional because it was a day before the two-year anniversary of my uncle’s death. I was also feeling particularly sorry for myself, believing that I truly deserved this break because the stress of school was becoming unbearable.

Re-evaluating time travel

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Long ago, a friend asked me if I would ever want the ability to time travel. At the time, I  eagerly responded “yes.” I could only envision the many great advantages, going back to erase all those embarrassing moments, take risks I was too scared to take and refuse other actions that did nothing to benefit my life. I could remove any harmful words that escaped my lips or offer advice that I didn’t have at the time.

It wasn’t until much later that I recalled my answer and re-evaluated my hasty decision. Although the thought of erasing past mistakes seemed appealing, I began to question if this was wise. Did I truly want to alter part of my life?

WYD 2002 ripples continue

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Since I first started participating in youth-related activities within my parish and diocese, just weeks prior to World Youth Day 2002, I have noticed a couple things. One is that twice as many youth are involved at my parish than when I was first starting. Secondly, everyone seems a little more keen on helping their community or openly sharing their faith with others.

Give Mom the gift of time

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{mosimage}Soon enough every son, daughter and father will be stressing out to find that last-minute Mother’s Day gift for the special woman in their life.

Most mothers will probably be expecting the cliché of Mother’s Day gifts: the bouquet of flowers. But let me give some advice for those gift-hunters. I suggest a gift that the mother in your life will cherish forever: time.

Secure in His hands

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Faith is defined as a secure belief in God and a trusting acceptance of God’s will. I haven’t had to rely on pure faith very often. I have a secure and content life with very little uncertainty.

People talk about taking “leaps of faith,” but I cannot recall any instances when I’ve been required to do so. However, I will soon be entering the age where I am no longer living at home and am confronted with the adult world.

A religious sports fan’s internal conflict

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Toronto sports teams are recognized for their huge fan base. Whenever our teams are playing, we’re right there in the stands with them, supporting them through thick and thin. The people of Toronto support many teams, including the Leafs, Raptors, Blue Jays and Toronto FC.

But when does this passion for the game go too far? Is it right for someone to be more devoted to a sports team than their religion?