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Explore Understanding Our Church, a 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.

For what are you preparing? Last minute shopping or Christ’s birth?
Betsy Wiederkehr Huss
The anticipation is growing. The preparation is excelling. The wait is almost over. Are you exhausted or exuberant?
Apocryphal writings good source of information on Mary, her parents
Sister Cabrini Schmitz, OSB
The Church celebrates many feasts of Mary, the Mother of God, in the course of the liturgical year. Some of Mary’s feasts have definite ties with the Gospels while others have no reference in Scripture. For example, no hint of the two feasts in the fall — the Nativity of Mary on Sept.
Caring for dying parents offers moments of joy with sorrow
Sheila Harrison, Hot Springs Correspondent - Arkansas Catholic
You are middle-aged and you may think the hardest talk you’ll ever have is behind you, when you and your adolescent had the “sex talk.” Actually the hardest talk may well be the one you must have with your aging parents as they face declining health and the loss of their independence.
Communication is crucial to financial peace
Tara Little, Associate Editor - Arkansas Catholic
country. The stress caused by debt and differing priorities can be overwhelming, and oftentimes, partners turn on each other rather than seek the help they need.
Use family recipes to prepare a feast of faith
Cassandra Poppe
We all have heard how family mealtime helps to strengthen family bonds. Food nourishes us, strengthens us and brings us comfort. And when a family comes together to share a meal, it builds trust, love and loyalty between family members as well. It is the same with our faith.
Joint meals, prayer, Mass key for families today
Keli Jacobi, El Dorado Correspondent - Arkansas Catholic
Soccer practice, cheerleading tryouts, Scouting — all these extracurricular activities and more command the attention of parents and their children at an increasingly frantic pace in many Catholic American homes today.
Divorced, widowed find support through parish groups
Patricia May, Fayetteville Correspondent
ROGERS — Betsy McNeil was visiting her children in Tulsa, Okla., when she noticed a church bulletin notice advertising a support program for widowed and divorced people. She thought she discarded it. But when she returned home to Rogers, the brochure was in her suitcase.
Marriage relationship must be fed and nurtured
Elizabeth Reha
“They say it takes a village to raise a child.
All should enter the Mass prepared to worship and draw near to Christ
Father James P. West
On the night before his death, Our Lord sits down at table with his Apostles for the Last Supper. Solemnly, in the most serious tone they have ever heard from him, he begins to speak, “I tell you the truth, one of you will betray me — one who is eating with me.”
Our eyes have not seen what our hearts can only imagine of heaven
Judy Hoelzeman
“Heaven seems a lot closer in a house beside the water.” It was just a saying embroidered on a couch pillow in a vacation house. But add the expanse of Montana’s Canyon Ferry Lake outside the window, along with a deer grazing 10 feet away, and heaven really did seem close.

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