Lay Witness Magazine

A View Worth Keeping

by Nancy Montgomery In the mid-1990s I closed my heart to new life. My husband and I had two beautiful children—a boy and a girl. So along with the flow of our American culture, I loaded up the baby clothes, portable crib, and more and headed for the citywide yard sale. I thought it was better to cash in on freedom by unloading unneeded clutter. So I would forever ignore that nagging maternal urge that I might want to hold another baby in my arms. I could highlight my “burdens” that would come with another baby—morning sickness, diapers, fatigue, and … Continue reading

Address to Springtime of Faith Conference

Saturday, November 4, 2000 Most Reverend Edward J. Slattery Bishop of Tulsa Copyright. 2000, the Diocese of Tulsa Twenty-one years on the Chair of Peter, and still, John Paul II breaks every rule! Just when the journalists and the pope watchers of the world think they have the man figured out, His Holiness does them one better, exceeding their expectations and opening up new dimensions for the Church in the modern world. It’s not just a matter that most world leaders his age are already writing their memoirs of things long ago and half-remembered. Rather it is that despite his … Continue reading

Aging Gracefully

by Leon J. Suprenant, Jr. Deep down, we knew this day would come. When my family moved to Ohio in 1993, we invited my mother Eileen (“Mom”) to come live with us. While still capable of living on her own, Mom was beginning to feel the effects of age and heart problems, and it was increasingly burdensome for her to maintain her condominium. Plus, we considered “Grandma” part of our family, and valued her time with us. So we warmly welcomed her (and her cats!) into our home. In December 1998, Mom was hospitalized with pneumonia. Complications ensued after Christmas. … Continue reading

Capital Punishment: Can We? Should We?

by Carolyn Astfalk Politics make strange bedfellows. Ordinarily Hollywood, the liberal intellectual elite, and the mass media are arrayed against Catholics on such issues as abortion, assisted suicide, homosexuality, and rampant materialism. For Catholics to be “in bed with” the custodians of modern American culture on an issue is highly unusual. But that’s where many good Catholics find themselves on the death penalty. But how has this come about? Has the Church started brushing shoulders with the American Civil Liberties Union on this issue? For some, who have fought passionately and steadfastly for decades to end abortion, capital punishment was … Continue reading

Family Bonds and Social Order

By Sean Innerst The Ten Commandments begin with three that delineate how we ought to act toward our God. We are to worship Him alone, revere or keep holy His name, and worship Him in a particularly solemn way on the seventh day, our Sunday. The rest of the seven commandments have to do with how we ought to treat other (human) persons. The hinge between the two groups is the Fourth Commandment which requires that we honor our fathers and mothers. Likewise, the first two chapters of Sirach are largely concerned with what we owe to God. According to … Continue reading

In Brief…

The Holy Father’s Intentions Pope John Paul II has announced the following general and missionary intentions for January and February 2001: January That Christians may foster the evangelization of new generations through the constant search for the unity desired by Christ. That through civic and religious education, every form of intolerance and discrimination may be uprooted all over the world. February That children never again will be obliged to participate in any war, but may be freed from hatred and violence and may live, as children should, enjoying friendship in their family, school, and society. That, through the acceptance of … Continue reading

Reproductive Technology

by John M. Haas Infertility is a growing problem in the United States. And in true American fashion, there has been a corresponding growth in a “reproductive technologies industry” to provide a solution. It is quite legitimate, indeed praiseworthy, to try to find ways to overcome infertility. The problem causes great pain and anguish for many married couples. Since children are a wonderful gift of marriage, it is a good thing to try to overcome the obstacles which prevent children from being conceived and born. In 1987 the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued a document known … Continue reading

The Science of the Pill

by John Wilks For many Christians, the Church’s prohibition against the use of the birth control pill is a stumbling block—a cause of spiritual distress and confusion. Why, argues a loving husband and wife, does the Church forbid such a medication? My wife is not well, my husband is unemployed. Surely, in needy circumstances, the pill is a morally acceptable option. Experts in the fields of philosophy, sociology, and marriage have written many compassionate books on that topic. I am approaching this subject from a different perspective—the “science” of the pill. The “pill” comes in two broad formats. The more … Continue reading