Missionary Blog: One

Colleen Coughlin
Colleen Coughlin is a staff member at the Archdiocese of St. Louis Mission Office. She is the Mission Office website editor and coordinator for the Holy Childhood Association.

By Colleen Coughlin

"If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one." I recently came across this beautiful quote by Mother Teresa just when I needed to hear it most. With the grind of everyday life—chores, errands, jobs, family, and friends—it's easy to get caught up in the "busyness" of each day. You wish you could do it all, but sometimes, that's impossible. Lately, I've found myself looking for ways that I could "feed a hundred people" on top of all these things that consume my everyday life. But, I realized that I can't save the whole world all at once, and I can't help every single person or cause, as disappointing as that may be. I have to start small—I have to do it one step at a time. I have to begin with one.

I recently became more conscious of the ways in which I am "feeding just one." Not literally feeding someone, of course, but simply just sharing my gifts to help someone in need. I realized that anything I can do to offer help in this world, even if it's just for one person or one particular cause, is important. I have to admit that at first, I had a little difficulty with this—of course I wanted to help anyone that I could, but a tiny part of me thought that I had to go out there and totally get involved in a million different things in order for my work to be considered worthy or important. I felt that this was the way to show that I was actually doing something worthwhile with my time.

To read more, click here.

Homily of the Week: Pope Benedict's Homily for First Vespers of the First Sunday of Advent

benedict-xvi_01.jpgDear Brothers and Sisters,

Advent is, par excellence, the season of hope. Every year this basic spiritual attitude is reawakened in the hearts of Christians, who, while they prepare to celebrate the great Feast of Christ the Savior's Birth, revive the expectation of his glorious second coming at the end of time. The first part of Advent insists precisely on the parousia, the final coming of the Lord. The antiphons of these First Vespers are all oriented, with different nuances, to this perspective. The short Reading from the First Letter to the Thessalonians (5: 23-34) refers explicitly to the final coming of Christ using precisely the Greek term parousia (cf. v. 23). The Apostle urges Christians to keep themselves sound and blameless, but above all encourages them to trust in God, who "is faithful" (v. 24) and will not fail to bring about this sanctification in all who respond to his grace.

To read more, click here.

Archbishop Blesses, Dedicates New Shrine at South City Parish

On Sunday, December 2, Archbishop Raymond L. Burke presided at a Mass at Saint John the Baptist Parish in St. Louis at which the parish family dedicated its new shrine in honor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help (pictured above left). The shrine features a scuptural rendition of the familiar image of Our Lady of Perpetual Help (the original of which is enshrined in the Church of Saint Alphonsus on the Esquiline Hill in Rome), set in a niche of dark blue highlighted with gold fleurs-de-lis. The image is fronted by a tiered stand of votive candles. After blessing the shrine, Archbishop Burke was among the first to light one of the candles (above right), while master of ceremonies Monsignor Mark Rivituso and Saint John the Baptist parishioners looked on. The parish, located in the Bevo Neighborhood of south St. Louis, recently completed an extensive renovation of its church, of which the new shrine is a key feature.

A Thankful Thanksgiving: Father Tolton Center Event Celebrates Community

Dekita Whittier and her daughter, Caniya, were among the many who had reason to give thanks at the Father Tolton Center celebration.

By John Nguyen, Catholic Charities of St. Louis

The Thankful Thanksgiving event at Father Tolton Center was a celebration of community. Each person at the event represented a different story of charity, love, and gratitude.

"What will my baby eat?"

This is the question Dekita Whittier asked herself that morning. It was the same question she had asked herself last night.

"What will my baby eat?"

As Dekita shuffled around her home, from which she would soon be evicted, she tried to find food suitable for her daughter, Lakita. Her husband was out trying to find work. He had been laid off from his job, and with two kids at home, the family could not afford to live without paychecks. Someone she had met gave her a phone number for a place she had never heard of before: Father Tolton Center. They told her the center could help.

Dekita picked up the phone and made a very important call.

To read more, click here.

Debate on Politics Document Continues — Cardinal Criticizes Democrats

Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley
of Boston

By Nancy Frazier O'Brien, Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON, D.C. (CNS)—Judging from some of the early reaction to the U.S. bishops' Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship, debate about the more than 10,000-word document on political responsibility overwhelmingly approved by the bishops November 14 is far from over.

Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley of Boston drew national attention when he told The Boston Globe daily newspaper after the vote that the Democratic Party "has been extremely insensitive to the Church's position, on the Gospel of Life in particular, and on other moral issues."

He said the document, considered by the bishops every four years since 1976, was clearer than earlier versions about the importance issues such as abortion and euthanasia have over other political issues with lesser moral weight.

But others say the document is not strong enough in condemning Catholic politicians who take positions contrary to the Church on abortion, embryonic stem-cell research and other life issues.

To read more, click here.

Additional related links:

Interfaith Council Addresses 'Food Instability' in St. Louis Region

faiths-united.jpgDespite working a sixteen-hour shift, a single mother skips breakfast and lunch so there will be enough food for her two adolescent children. A family of four eats meal after meal of boxed dinners, packed with additives, and lacking any nutritional value. Children live throughout their youth without knowing the pleasures of crisp, fresh vegetables—the tart sweetness of an apple or the clean taste of a cucumber.

This is happening every day in St. Louis. The hungry are here.

Although we have overcome starvation in our country, food instability still threatens to create a nation of malnourished citizens. Food instability is the concept that families do not know where there next meal may come from. With limited resources and limited availability, they are unable to produce nutritious meals to promote healthy living.

In response to this terrible social condition, members of the community have reached out across religious and cultural boundaries to present a united front in the cause of ending hunger. This council was titled Faiths United Against Hunger. At a meeting on Monday, November 5, the group met to share and discuss their viewpoints on the topic.

To read more, click here.

John Paul II Named Patron for Youth Day '08

World Youth Day '08Nine Others Chosen, Including Blessed Teresa of Calcutta

SYDNEY, Australia, November 5, 2007 (Zenit.org)—World Youth Day organizers say that Servant of God Pope John Paul II was a natural choice as one of the event's 10 patrons, since the Polish Pontiff invented the gatherings.

L'Osservatore Romano published the list of patrons chosen for WYD '08, to be held in Sydney in July.

Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, a student and athlete who worked with Catholic Action of Italy, also made the list. Blessed Pier died at age 24 in 1925.

The Polish woman religious who inspired the future John Paul II, Saint Faustina Kowalska (1905-1938), was also chosen.

Another patron is a native of WYD's host country. Blessed Mary McKillop, the first Australian woman to be canonized, was also the first to found a religious order Down Under, the Sisters of St. Joseph of the Cross.

To read more, click here.

All Souls Day: Remembering the Faithful Departed

Priests' Purgatorial Society Mass
Prayers for the dead: In the Cathedral Basilica crypt, Archbishop Burke offers prayers for priests who have died during the past year, at the conclusion of the annual Priests' Purgatorial Society Mass on November 2.

"Into your hands, O Lord, we humbly entrust our brothers and sisters.
In this life you embraced them with your tender love;
deliver them now from every evil and bid them enter eternal rest.
The old order has passed away:
welcome them then into paradise,
where there will be no sorrow, no weeping nor pain,
but the fullness of peace and joy
with your Son and the Holy Spirit
for ever and ever. Amen."

(Prayer from the Order of Christian Furnerals)

The memorial of All Souls, November 2, is the Church's annual remembrance of all who have gone before us in faith. Traditionally, the entire month of November is a time to recall and pray for the dead, culminating in the solemnity of Christ the King, the last Sunday in Ordinary Time, also the end of the litugical year, and, by association, a reminder of the end of time, when Christ will come again to reign. This in turn marks the transition to the new liturgical year and the season of Advent, when the Church recalls Christ's first coming as a child at Bethlehem and anticipates his return at the end of time.

To read Archbishop Burke's November 2 column, on the subject of our communion with the saints and the poor souls, click here.

All Saints: "Oh, Lord, I Want To Be in That Number..."

Kids Celebrate the Saints
Kids celebrate the saints: See the video below to discover what Mrs. Barry's 2006 Cathedral School kindergarten class learned about some holy men and women.

It might be said that the entire thrust of the Christian vocation is to become a saint. A saint, after all, is someone who enjoys eternal life with God in heaven after his or her earthly life has ended. For the Christian, this eternal beatitude—a supreme blessedness or happiness—is the goal toward which all one's life is to be lived.

One of the richest treasures of the Christian tradition is the belief that there are those people of whom it can be said, with all confidence, that they have gone to live with God after death. These saints who Christians recall by name serve not only as exemplars of the Christian vocation but also as advocates in the presence of God. One can look to these holy men and women as patterns for living, and ask for their prayers, or intercession, as well.

The good news about the saints is that their number includes people of every age, every nation, and every race, a clue to all who would seek to join their ranks that the only qualifications needed to do so are the desire for union with God and a heart willing to cooperate with the grace that God freely offers. In the meantime, the saints of God stand as shining examples of Christian living and pray to God for all who would follow the path that they traveled.

To celebrate the saints, Mrs. Kim Barry’s 2006 kindergarten class at the Cathedral School studied the lives and the example of several holy men and women. The results of their hard work are presented in this special video. Happy All Saints Day!

2004 Press Releases

Press Releases are available for download in Adobe PDF format. Click here to download Acrobat Reader.

December 29, 2004
Statement of Archbishop Raymond L. Burke on the Appointment of the Most Reverend Jerome E. Listecki as Bishop of La Crosse, Wisconsin

December 23, 3004
Christmas Masses Scheduled for Polish Catholic Community

December 21, 2004
Jamie Allman Named Chief Spokesman and Executive Director of Communications for Archdiocese of St. Louis

December 16, 2004
Christmas Masses Scheduled at New and Old Cathedrals

December 15, 2004
Statement of the Archdiocese of St. Louis Regarding Father Robert Johnston

December 2, 2004
Statement of the Archdiocese of St. Louis Concerning Meeting Regarding St. Stanislaus Kostka Parish

November 15, 2004
Statement Regarding Vatican Decision Concerning St. Stanislaus Kostka Polish Roman Catholic Church

October 29, 2004
"Annual Catholic Appeal" Is New Name for Archdiocese's Chief Fund-Raising Campaign

October 18, 2004
"The Walls Come Tumbling Down" To Be Presented at Cardinal Rigali Center

October 11, 2004
Director of Ghana's National Catholic Health Service To Speak on Fight Against HIV/AIDS in Africa

September 24, 2004
Annual "Red Mass" Celebrates Opening of Judicial Term

September 3, 2004
Archdiocesan Development Appeal Surpasses $11.6 Million Goal

August 3, 2004
Temporary Transfer of Polish Apostolate

May 21, 2004
Feast of Corpus Christi Celebrates Eucharist as "Source and Summit of Christian Life"

May 20, 2004
Statement of the Archdiocese of St. Louis Regarding Donald J. Straub

May 14, 2004
Paul VI Institute Offers Variety of Summer Courses

April 26, 2004
High School Seniors To Be Honored for Extraordinary Service

April 23, 2004
Archdiocesan Development Appeal Begins April 24 and Continues Through May 9

April 21, 2004
Celebration Honors Memory of Father Augustine Tolton

April 20, 2004
Statement of the Archdiocese of St. Louis on the Lawsuit Alleging Sexual Abuse of a Minor by Bryan Kuchar

March 24, 2004
Holy Week Services Scheduled at New and Old Cathedrals

March 23, 3004
Archbishop Burke To Celebrate Mass With Students From Around the Archdiocese

March 22, 2004
Cathedral Basilica To Host Relics of Christ's Passion

March 19, 2004
Archdiocese To Present Catholic Women Awards

March 9, 2004
Monsignor Robert W. Finn Named Coadjutor Bishop of Kansas City-St. Joseph

March 4, 2004
Pilgrimage Is Announced for Pallium Ceremony

February 12, 2004
Ash Wednesday Masses Scheduled at New and Old Cathedrals

February 11, 2004
Farewell Celebration for Bishop Joseph Naumann Announced

February 10, 2004
Internationally Renowned Irish Tenor Mark Forrest To Appear in Concert at Sheldon Concert Hall

February 6, 2004
Catholic Campaign for Human Development Now Accepting Applications for Grants

January 12, 2004
Archdiocese of St. Louis Commemorates the Life and Work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

January 7, 2004
Bishop Joseph Naumann Named Coadjutor Archbishop of Kansas City in Kansas

2003 Press Releases

Press Releases are available for download in Adobe PDF format. Click here to download Acrobat Reader.

December 15, 2003
Christmas Masses Scheduled at New and Old Cathedrals

December 2, 2003
Statements of the Auxiliary Bishops of St. Louis on the Appointment of the Most Reverend Raymond L. Burke as Archbishop of St. Louis

December 2, 2003
Statement of Most Reverend Raymond Burke on His Appointment as Archbishop of St. Louis

December 2, 2003
Bishop Raymond Burke of La Crosse, Wisconsin, Appointed Archbishop of St. Louis

November 24, 2003
December 11 Mass Will Celebrate Papal Honors Bestowed on Priests of Archdiocese

November 21, 2003
Arhcdiocesan Seminary Prepares for Christmas With Annual Novena

November 12, 2003
Statement of the Archdiocese of St. Louis Regarding Rev. Kenneth J. Roberts

November 7, 2003
Statement of the Archdiocese of St. Louis Regarding the Sentencing of Bryan Kuchar

November 6, 2003
Fesitval Concert Will Commemorate Pope's 25th Anniversary

November 5, 2003
Catholic Youth Council Sets Annual Sports Award Dinner

November 5, 2003
Archdiocese of St. Louis Celebrates the Gift of Adoption

October 24, 2003
Catholic Women's Conference To Take Place November 8

October 17, 2003
Mark Gietl Named Archdiocesan Development Appeal Chairman

October 16, 2003
Dr. Theresa Perry To Deliver Shocklee Social Justice Lecture

October 10, 2003
Archdiocesan Pro-Life Convention To Be Held October 19

October 9, 2003
Bishop Joseph Naumann Is Elected Administrator of Archdiocese

October 9, 2003
Archdiocese Issues Code of Ethical Conduct for Clergy and All Employees and Volunteers Working With Minors

October 8, 2003
St. Louis Catholic Community Will Gather To Celebrate Pope's 25th Anniversary

October 8, 2003
Archdiocese of St. Louis Celebrates Beatification of Mother Teresa of Calcutta

September 26, 2003
Papal Honors Bestowed on Sixteen Priests of Archdiocese

September 23, 2003
Annual Red Mass Celebrates Opening of Judicial Term

September 12, 2003
James Stutz Named President of St. Louis Catholic Charities

September 10, 2003
St. Louis Catholic Community Will Gather To Bid Farewell to Archbishop Rigali

September 9, 2003
Paul VI Institute Offers Expanded Adult Education Activities

September 5, 2003
Archdiocesan Development Appeal Surpasses $11.4 Million Goal

August 29, 2003
Statement of the Archdiocese of St. Louis on the Verdict in the Trial of Rev. Bryan Kuchar

July 15, 2003
Statement of Archbishop Justin Rigali on His Appointment as Archbishop of Philadelphia

July 15, 2003
Archbishop Justin Rigali Appointed Archbishop of Philadelphia

July 3, 2003
First Mass To Be Celebrated at Newly Created Parish

July 2, 2003
Coast-to-Coast Bicycle Tour Travels Through St. Louis Area

June 6, 2003
Archdiocese Issues Revised Sexual Abuse Policy

June 5, 2003
Feast of Corpus Christi Celebrates Sacrament of Eucharist as "Source and Summit of Christian Life"

May 29, 2003
Archbishop Rigali Authors Book of Spiritual Essays

May 22, 2003
Statement of the Archdiocese of St. Louis on the Trial of Rev. Bryan Kuchar

May 13, 2003
Eight Priests To Be Ordained for Archdiocese of St. Louis

May 8, 2003
Paul VI Institute Accepting Registrations for Summer Courses

April 25, 2003
Archdiocesan Development Appeal Begins April 26 and Continues Through May 11, 2003

April 22, 2003
Service Planned for Families Who Have Suffered the Loss of a Child Before Birth

April 11, 2003
Holy Week Opens With Palm Sunday Services

April 4, 2003
Archbishop Justin Rigali Resting Comfortably - Thanks Well-Wishers for the Flood of Prayers, Good Wishes He Is Receiving During Recovery From Cancer Surgery

March 18, 2003
Mass for World Peace and the Situation in Iraq To Be Celebrated at Cathedral Basilica

March 11, 2003
Surgery Scheduled for Archbishop Justin Rigali

March 10, 2003
Cardinal Avery Dulles To Deliver Lecture at Kenrick-Glennon Seminary

March 4, 2003
Archdiocese To Present Sixth Annual Catholic Women Awards

February 20, 2003
Statement of the Archdiocese of St. Louis Regarding Robert J. Yim

February 6, 2003
Catholic Campaign for Human Development Now Accepting Applications for Grants

January 30, 2003
Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts To Receive Religious Awards at Scout Sunday Prayer Service

January 28, 2003
Archdiocese Observes "World Day of The Sick" With Two Special Liturgies

January 16, 2003
Archdiocese Publishes Its Own Comprehensive Marriage Preparation Program

January 15, 2003
Archdiocese Hosts Annual Liturgical Conference

January 10, 2003
Archdiocese Invites Inactive Catholics To "Come Home Again"

January 3, 2003
Archdiocese of St. Louis Commemorates the Life and Work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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