Understanding Our Church

Explore this 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. All articles have been reviewed for theological accuracy. Opinions expressed are those of the author.

'Humanae Vitae' is based on natural law
Father Jason Tyler
July 25 marked the 50th anniversary of St. Paul VI’s encyclical, “Humanae Vitae” (“Of Human Life”). Although that anniversary might not have been noticed by many, it did offer a chance to consider anew the points made there and to assess what impact it may still have in 2018.
Virtue of temperance can offer life balance
Paula Standridge
“What the world needs now is love, sweet love. It’s the only thing that there’s just too little of.” These lyrics are from a popular song from way back in 1965.
Pray for dead to help them enter heaven
Kelli Nugent
When my cousin’s husband died a few years ago, I was present at the time of his death. I had arrived at the hospital with a friend, not knowing that this man was so close to death but was gravely ill.
Baptism calls all to Christian leadership
Judy Hoelzeman
In August, a Pennsylvania Grand Jury released a report addressing sexual abuse in several Pennsylvania dioceses.
Day of peace calls us to seek peace in life
Betsy Wiederkehr Huss
September 21 is the International Day of Peace, which was established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly. It is a day for “strengthening the ideals of peace, both within and among all nations and peoples,” according to U.N.
Nativity of Mary affirms life at conception
Deacon Matthew Glover
There’s a scene early on in the poignant film “Dead Poets Society,” where Mr. Keating (played by the inestimable Robin Williams) challenges his students, in an urgent whisper, to make the most out of their short lives here on earth: “Carpe diem. Seize the day, boys.
Ark of new covenant taken into heaven, body and soul
Deacon Mike Cumnock
In June, Little Rock Scripture Study sponsored its 28th Bible Institute. Brother John Barker, OFM, spent the weekend leading us in an exploration of the Old Testament as a treasury of God’s love for us. He is the God of promise, fidelity, power, wisdom and mercy.
Respectful questions, discussion in theology club opens young minds
Edward C. Dodge
John was talking about dark matter and dark energy in space. He was talking physics, clearly having learned a lot from the priest who taught him the course.
Memorable vacations can be times of reflection and gratitude to God
Father Erik Pohlmeier
What word comes to your mind when you think of summer? High on the list is probably “heat” and whether that is good or bad depends on where you come down on the thermostat wars. If you are like Bishop Anthony B. Taylor, then the warmer the better.
Call no one 'father': Jesus warning about self-glorification, not a priest's title
Father Jerome Kodell, OSB
Catholics get nervous when they hear Jesus’ words about the use of the titles "rabbi," "father" and "master," especially this verse: “Call no one on earth your father; you have but one Father in heaven.” (Matthew 23:9) Some other Christians accuse Catholics of disobeying this mandate when they ca