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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

U.S. CATHOLIC - October 14, 2014

October 14, 2014

What every church should know about preventing suicide
When a person dies by suicide, those left behind often find themselves asking the same painful question: "What could I have done to prevent this?"

In most cases, there is no answer, and no one individual should hold him- or herself personally responsible for preventing a loved one's suicide. But as the understanding of suicide and its causes has increased, so too have prevention efforts. When larger communities learn strategies for preventing suicide, it can make a difference in helping reduce the number of suicides. Read more.

Tips for connecting to a loved one with Alzheimer's
One woman reflects on the "soul wisdom" she learned from her mother with Alzheimer's. 

As a child, Laura Anthony visited her grandmother, who had Alzheimer's, every weekend after Mass. "As a kid I never knew what to talk about," she says. "It was so awkward."
Years later, after her mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's, Anthony drove most weekends from Bradenton, Florida to provide care and company for her mom and dad in Citrus County. Read more

Does the church need a new theology of women?
Pope Francis himself has stated that the church needs a "new theology of women." But what does that mean, exactly? And who might write it?

A traditional Chinese proverb teaches that "women hold up half the sky." Women also hold up half the church. This truth may have been on Pope Francis' mind when he told reporters in July 2013, "I think that we haven't yet come up with a deep theology of the woman in the church." The pope is exactly right: The church does need a deep theology of the woman, but the question we have to ask is: How do we get there? Are these just words, or are church leaders finally ready to begin to implement a more gender-inclusive agenda? Read more
Don't forget to take our survey at the end of the essay.

Brittany Maynard and the Death with Dignity Act 
When the doctors forecast an imminent, painful death, does the patient have a right to write a more peaceful final chapter of life?

Brittany Maynard didn't choose to get sick. Never would she have dreamed that one year after getting married, she would be diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. Thinking she could have up to 10 years to live, an updated diagnosis showed rapid growth of the tumor and limited her life to only a few additional months. After research for treatment and the pain that comes with it, Maynard decided to move her family to Oregon, one of five states that offer legal physician-assisted suicide. Now she has chosen November 1 as the day she will end her life. Read more.

Vatican stuns Catholic world with greater openness toward gays and lesbians
Noting the "gifts and qualities" they offer, the assessment reflects the impact Pope Francis seems to be having on the Synod on the Family as he pushes for a more open, less doctrinaire approach. 

"Are our communities capable of providing that, accepting and valuing their sexual orientation, without compromising Catholic doctrine on the family and matrimony?" said the communique from the nearly 200 bishops and lay delegates. While they reaffirmed their opposition to gay marriage and same-sex unions, the bishops' groundbreaking document nonetheless said homosexuality called for "serious reflection" and described it as an "important educative challenge" for the church. Read more

Listen: Invisible Hour
Joe Henry (Work Song, 2014) 

Joe Henry may always be thought of as the T Bone Burnett of his generation. After all, his career began when the legendary producer pulled his demo off the slush pile. In recent years, as a producer himself, Henry seems to have worked with every rock and soul legend that Burnett didn't have time for. As a singer-songwriter, Henry has outpaced his mentor by releasing a dozen fine albums with styles ranging from alt-country to jazz. But this bare-boned and openhearted collection may be his best. Read more.

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October 2014

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