Take a deep breath and watch something wonderful

With all the papal craziness—who’s up, who’s down, who’s electable, who’s not—here’s a welcome palate-cleanser that helps put it all in perspective. You want to see the gospel in action?  Here it is. From the CBS Evening News last Friday night, Steve Hartman has the story of a mentally challenged high school basketball manager who [Read More…]

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In rare operation, Iraq war vet receives double arm transplant

Brendan Marrocco lost all four limbs in the war, but as he explains in the video below, what was most devastating was losing his arms. The miracle of science may have helped change some of that. Watch the PBS video below. And you can read more about his journey at his website. What an amazing [Read More…]

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The inspiring life of “Super Antonio”: “We are all children, like him”

This is pretty terrific, and deeply moving: a short video about a boy named Antonio Lopez from northern Spain.  He has cerebral palsy but has become a kind of hero to his classmates, who have embraced him with something that can only be called love.   (Hey, any kid who likes Angry Birds is okay [Read More…]

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“Sing all the time”

That’s the advice given to Lazaro Arbos on “American Idol” the other night — and I couldn’t agree more. This Cuban immigrant struggles with a monumental stammer. But listen to what happens when he opens his mouth to sing “Bridge Over Troubled Waters.” For anyone who has ever battled the hurt and shame of stuttering…or [Read More…]

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The deeply moving story behind a unique father-daughter dance…in prison

I stumbled on this over at the Patheos Evangelical Channel.  Take a few minutes and watch. The speaker is Angela Patton, Executive Director of Camp Diva in Richmond.  Camp Diva started as a five-week summer retreat and has since expanded to offer several after-school programs, summer and other programs that empower African-American girls —young women she refers to as [Read More…]

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“Les Mis”: it’s all about the bishop

There’s a lovely remembrance of first encountering “Les Miserables” — the musical and the book — by Rev. Charles Klamut, in this week’s issue of AMERICA—and he concludes with this poignant epiphany: I read Les Misérables in a week. It was the perfect book at the perfect time, with soul-shaking impact. For a long time afterward, I [Read More…]

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A “bucket list” for the Year of Faith

A reader in Cincinnati brought this to my attention.  It comes from St. Cecilia’s Church in Oakley, Ohio.   The pastor has posted a “bucket list” for the Year of Faith, with 33 ideas to enrich and enliven your spiritual life in the months head.  A sample: Join the parish, if you are not already [Read More…]

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Now the work of Christmas begins

Lest we forget:  When the song of the angels is stilled, when the star in the sky is gone, when the kings and princes are home, when the shepherds are back with their flocks, the work of Christmas begins: to find the lost, to heal the broken, to feed the hungry, to release the prisoner, [Read More…]

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One of YouTube’s most famous babies turns 5

A lot of you may remember this video, which has been making the rounds for a few years. It shows eight-month-old Jonathan Breaux responding to his mother’s voice for the first time, after getting a cochlear implant. That was five years ago.  What’s happened since?  The good people at TODAY decided to find out: Posted [Read More…]

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The astonishing grace of Dustin Rhodes

Photo: by Paul Kuehnel, York Daily Record/Sunday News Read his story by Teresa McMinn for the Daily Record/Sunday News, and whisper a prayer: A few weeks ago, Dustin Rhodes was a healthy, happily married husband and father of a 9-month-old son. Rhodes, a Dallastown native and salutatorian of his York Catholic High School 2002 graduating class, [Read More…]

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