Understanding Our Church

Explore this treasury of Arkansas writers discussing the Catholic faith on a wide variety of topics. Find what you're looking for by browsing the whole list or search by keyword or author. All articles have been reviewed for theological accuracy. Opinions expressed are those of the author.

Focus on blame game misses point of sacrifice, which was foretold
Father James P. West
Lent is well underway, and it is likely that our minds are focused by now upon the many “hardships” of this season.
Lent is a time to experience ‘paschal death’ and thus spiritual growth
Sandy Compas
My favorite pastor, when asked from year to year what he was giving up for Lent, always replied, “Watermelon and strawberries!” This never failed to raise eyebrows, as we were far more likely to see snow than strawberries during February and March.
40-day journey should lead to reconciliation
Charles T. Sullivan
All through the course of the Church’s liturgical year, various aspects of the Paschal Mystery (the mystery of Christ) unfold. Five distinct seasons make up the liturgical year.
‘Via Dolorosa’ follows tradition and Scripture
Arkansas Catholic
Christians who make the “Way of the Cross” or “Via Dolorosa” in Jerusalem today follow a route of the 14 stations followed since the time of the Crusades. Franciscans in Jerusalem lead the Stations of the Cross every Friday afternoon.
Christian love is lived out through selfless actions, not just words
Judy Hoelzeman
Valentine’s Day is coming and love is in the air — or is it?
Celebrations throughout liturgical year reflect course of Christian life
Abbot Jerome Kodell, OSB
Though we hold all the truths of the faith continually and try to live the Gospel life fully every day, we need the special days and seasons of the Church year to remind and renew us in what we profess.
In spite of mystery, Trinity offers conversion by experiencing its reality
Msgr. Richard Oswald
One of the joys of teaching children is the delightful way in which they ponder our instruction, synthesize it as best they can, and then come up with questions that force us to dig a bit deeper in both our understanding and the way in which we express it.
Like Mary, all ‘hearers of the Word’ should become doers of God’s will
Sister Susan McCarthy, RDC
Eight years ago I attended a talk on Mary at which I was introduced to a statue of the Blessed Mother, titled “Seat of Wisdom.”
Church’s saint-making process has evolved into a formal procedure
Charles T. Sullivan
The beatification of Mother Teresa on Oct. 19 has helped to spark a renewed interest in the Church’s saint-making process.
Tradition uses senses, elevates ordinary during worship
Betsy Wiederkehr Huss
A treasure of our Catholic faith tradition is how well we use ordinary things and our five senses to worship and grow. Take a moment and think of various worship times in your life and during the seasons of our Church calendar.