On March 22, Kara Tippetts died of cancer. She was a 38-year-old mother of four, a pastor’s wife and a writer in Colorado Springs. She chronicled her illness at her blog, Mundane Faithfulness, where she presented to the world not only the ups and downs of living with cancer, but also the deep Christian faith that grounded her. Her final post, written by a loved one, was an obituary. Its title: “Homecoming.”
Envision the family portrait. The husband and wife stand in Victorian dress with their five adult daughters, all in habits. It’s nothing I’ve seen on any Christmas card, but it’s an icon Catholics should expect this coming year in preparation for the canonization of Blessed Louis and Zelie Martin, parents of St. Therese the Little Flower. The couple, married in 1858, had nine children — seven daughters and two sons — but only five girls survived infancy. All five joined the convent; one became a Visitation sister, and the others Carmelites in Lisieux.
The competition is giving some Catholic groups the opportunity to raise awareness about a problem that’s prominent in many of the World Cup’s competing countries, one that no soccer fan is cheering: the scourge of persistent poverty and its debilitating effects.
Each year, Minnesota’s bishops designate a Sunday in January, typically the feast of the Epiphany, as Immigration Sunday. This year’s observance on Jan. 5 affords an opportunity to learn more about what the Church teaches on immigration and the challenges that today’s newcomers face as they seek to start a new life for themselves and their families.
Just about every day on my way to work, I encounter the face of the poor.