A woman holds up a quilt with photos of people who say they were abused as children by priests, in San Diego, 2007. AP Photo/Denis Poroy

What Catholics can learn from protests of the past

There is rich Catholic heritage of resistance. Catholic protesters have used powerful religious symbols, including vials of their own blood, as an extension of Christ's blood, to demand change.
Clergy sex abuse was among the biggest religion stories of 2018. In this photo, a demonstrator holds up a protest sign at the Capitol in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. AP Photo/Jacqueline Larma

Researching clergy sex abuse can take a heavy emotional toll: 3 essential reads

For scholars, researching the Catholic Church can mean a laborious process involving several years. And talking to survivors of clergy sex abuse can carry its own pain and personal toll.
Catnip induces changes in cat behavior. Anna Hoychuk

Is it unethical to give your cat catnip?

Catnip can induce changes in cat behavior. An expert argues that giving it to cats raises questions about human power and animal autonomy.
The Blackfeet always faced their tipis towards the rising sun, including on winter solstice. Beinecke Library via Wikimedia Commons

What winter solstice rituals tell us about indigenous people

For indigenous peoples, winter solstice has been a time to honor their ancient sun deity. Their rituals reveal a deep understanding of the natural world.
The Salvation Army is among the top few U.S. charities. CityOfFortWorth

How Salvation Army’s red kettles became a Christmas tradition

Around this time of the year, The Salvation Army's red kettles become visible as part of holiday giving. How this British evangelical organization came to the US is interesting history.
Dorothy Day with publisher Robert Ellsberg. Jim Forest/Flickr.com

Dorothy Day – ‘a saint for our times’

The founder of the Catholic Worker Movement, Dorothy Day, led a life full of paradoxes. An expert explains how there's much to learn from her life - especially how to see beauty in the least.
The largest public housing complex in the country, Queensbridge Houses, is located near the spot where Amazon plans to put a new headquarters. AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

Amazon’s move will gentrify neighborhoods – at what social cost?

When large companies move into an area, the result is often gentrification. When this happens, the economic and social costs for displaced residents is typically high.
Ilhan Omar, a Somali American, who was elected from Minnesota’s 5th congressional district, will be the first woman in U.S. Congress to wear a hijab. AP Photo/Jim Mone, File

Three things we can learn from contemporary Muslim women’s fashion

The de Young Museum of San Francisco recently opened an exhibit devoted to the Islamic fashion scene. Here's how Muslim women's fashions challenge popular stereotypes.
Rally organized by HIAS, a Jewish group that supports refugees, outside the White House. Ted Eytan/Flickr

Religion and refugees are deeply entwined in the US

The idea of welcoming the stranger is central to Christianity, Judaism and Islam. Today, that engenders a responsibility to shield refugees and other immigrants from violence and oppression.
A conservator works with a portion of the Dead Sea Scrolls containing Psalm 145 at The Franklin Institute, in Philadelphia. AP Photo/Matt Rourke

The Dead Sea Scrolls are a priceless link to the Bible’s past

Five of the Dead Sea Scrolls at the Museum of Bible were found to be forged. The scrolls are considered priceless. Here's why.
A Halloween ghost. Werner Reischel/Flickr.com

Why believing in ghosts can make you a better person

Ghost stories are often about the departed seeking justice for an earthly wrong. Their sightings are a reminder that ethics and morality transcend our lives.
Member of the Coalition of Catholics and Survivors hold a protesting outside the Boston archbishop’s residence in 2003. Jim Bourg/Reuters

The Catholic Church’s grim history of ignoring priestly pedophilia – and silencing would-be whistleblowers

While the problem of priestly abuse might be centuries old, its modern paper trail began after World War II, when 'treatment centers' appeared for rehabilitating priests. Many were send to New Mexico.

More Analysis and Comment

Just a thought

Back in the 1960s, some radical American Catholics were at the forefront of challenging U.S. involvement in the war in Vietnam. Perhaps the most famous among them were the Berrigan brothers. Mara Willard

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