When Does the Christmas Season Begin?

There is a debate that occurs every year around this time. When is the official start of the Christmas Season? Some argue that it begins the day after Thanksgiving. For others, it’s not until Dec. 1. Most of these hallmarks are purely secular, such as when Santa appears in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, or when the TV networks begin their “25 Days of Christmas” count-down of holiday specials.

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Master of the Universe

The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe (B)

The great Solemnity of Christ the King is celebrated on the last Sunday of Ordinary Time, before we begin a new liturgical year with the start of Advent. It is fitting that we end the year with a triumphant reminder that the Christ whose coming we await during Advent already reigns supreme over the entire Universe.

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Can Catholics Cuss?

Curse Words & The Second Commandment

We’ve started working our way through the Ten Commandments in our Sunday Credo catechetical discussions, and last night the topic was the first three commandments, which deal with how we are to love God. Most of the conversation focused on the second commandment in particular, which is to not take the Lord’s name in vain (see Ex 20:7, Deut 5:11).

The question that kicked off the conversation was, “Does that mean we shouldn’t curse?”

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That Which Endures

33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time (B)

Does anything last forever? As we approach the end of the liturgical year, the Mass readings prompt us to look ahead to that day when even time itself will end.  What will that be like? Our first reading from Daniel warns us that the days leading up to the end “shall be a time unsurpassed in distress” (Dan 12:1), while our gospel says, “the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from the sky, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken” (Mk 13:24-25). Pretty scary stuff.

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God Wants Your Heart

32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time (B)

This Sunday’s gospel reading has Jesus watching people donate money into the Temple treasury. He sees many rich people put in large sums, but when a poor widow comes by and puts in two small coins, worth just a few cents, Jesus declares that she has put in more than all the others combined. The rich gave from their surplus, but the widow gave from her poverty.

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