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Sister Pamela Smith

Freedom for religion helps humanity

Recently I was sitting in the atrium of the Savannah-Hilton Head airport sipping a cap­puccino. As I was looking down at the morning marvel of foam and cinnamon, I was startled to hear my name. At the time, I’d been think­ing about the First Amendment to the Bill of Rights. (Seriously. I’m an incurable nerd.) […]


Little things can mean a lot

“Do little things for little people with little or no rec­ognition or reward.” Those were the words of Msgr. Ronald Cellini, founding father of the John Paul II School in Ridgeland, as he addressed the class of 2018 at gradu­ation. A memorable commencement address is hard to find. Yet this was another with a great […]


Science and religion can be friends

It isn’t often that a high school commencement address proves to be memorable. But that is what happened at the graduation exer­cises for Cardinal Newman’s Class of 2018 this May. The speaker was Chris Edge, a physicist and software designer who graduated from the school in 1974. Along with exhorting students to maintain an active […]


Purgatory is real, too

Some years ago, televangelist Joyce Meyer was overheard saying that there must be some opportunity for improvement for good souls after they die. She compared it to continuing education. People can love God, have good will, and obey commandments without quite arriving at the pinnacle of charity. There’s room for growth in virtue. Gee, I […]


Heaven and Hell are real

It isn’t over when it’s over. That’s one way to express what Chris­tians profess about this life. That doesn’t mean we go about thinking how wonderful it will be to die, but it does mean that we face the prospect of death with a convic­tion that there is more to come. Con­sequently, we grieve the […]


Our languages speak of many things

Languages can be the matter of miracles or the cause for bitter feuds. The Solemnity of Pen­tecost gives us an example of the miraculous possibility of language. When the Apostles went out to pro­claim Christ risen from the dead, the people staying in Jerusalem could only shake their heads. Not only were they hearing an […]


Beautifying is an act of God

In a nine-minute YouTube clip, Bishop Robert Barron reminds us that the “great transcendentals” — the good, the true, and the beau­tiful — can all be ways in which we evangelize. Today’s converts are sometimes won the way some of the very first Christians were: by witnessing unselfish works of love and service. Others are won […]


Pro-life concerns hit home

Those of us who are of a certain vintage may recall that much of what drove U.S. participation in the Vietnam War was the very persuasive domino theory. The theory was that, like a line of upright dominos, the fall of one Southeast Asian nation to Communist control would accelerate the fall of others, even […]


Answering a basic moral question

Whether or not a person is a believer in anything beyond the visible world, it seems that there is at least one basic ques­tion that human beings must ask about right and wrong: Should we do everything we can do? We can do many fine and many villainous things. On the positive side, we can […]


When a bishop coexisted with slavery

Perhaps Bishop John England used a strategy which many of us in the pro-life movement must employ. When it seems impos­sible to eradicate a wrong totally, one takes steps to mitigate its effects. If we can’t get a human life amendment, we demonstrate and promote smaller legislative actions. The idea is to do something, even […]


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