Celebrating Advent out of our comfort zone

It’s an opportunity to reinvigorate our own spiritual lives and take up Christ’s invitation to ‘take the risk of being more’ The homilies that Pope Francis preaches at his morning Masses in the chapel of his residence often make the news. Earlier this week, he reflected on Christians who are afflicted with what he called…

Brittany Maynard’s death stirs thoughts about the gift of life

JoeTowalski Editorial My mother was a great teacher, but she taught some of her most important lessons after becoming ill and losing her ability to communicate Much has been written about the suicide death Nov. 1 of Brittany Maynard, both by supporters of the choice made by the 29-year-old terminal brain cancer victim and by…

More interfaith dialogue opportunities needed

As people of faith, we are called to do more than simply tolerate each other There are approximately 1.6 billion Muslims in the world and 2.2 billion Christians. It should be obvious by the numbers alone that peaceful coexistence between Christians and Muslims requires tolerance. As people of faith, however, we are called to do…

Domestic violence is sin requiring pro-life response

Editorial Joe Towalski Too many victims suffer in silence and need the church’s help and support The problem of domestic violence has been getting a great deal of attention recently because of publicity surrounding the acts committed by a few high-profile professional football players. While the incidents have raised more awareness about the issue, the problem…

Another cause that deserves to go viral

Joe Towalski Editor Middle East Christians need our prayers and humanitarian assistance Who would have ever thought that dumping water over your head could be such a successful fundraiser and awareness-builder? In the last month, the ALS Association has collected upwards of $94 million through the Ice Bucket Challenge to help find a cure for…

Blessed are the peacemakers

You c an be one of them by supporting Catholic organizations aiding war victims By Joe Towalski “Blessed are the peacemakers,” Jesus told his disciples, “for they will be called children of God.” Peacemakers are sorely needed in many parts of the world right now. Each day brings new stories about the ongoing violence in…

When it comes to values, parents must ‘walk the walk’

Survey finds moms and dads may be sending mixed signals to their children By Joe Towalski Is it more important for children to be successful or to be good? Parents, of course, want their children to be successful in school and at other pursuits in life. But, even more important, is teaching children to be…

Let’s be a ‘beacon of hope’ for religious liberty

July 4, 2014, edition By Joe Towalski The 4th of July is a tradition­al time to celebrate our free­doms as U.S. citizens. Several of those freedoms are enshrined in the First Amendment, which guarantees Americans the ability to worship and practice their faith without undue interference from the government. Threats to that freedom, howev­er, surface…

The Visitor grabs a new/old editor on the rebound

The St. Cloud Diocese deserves to have an editor who is on-site, part of the fabric of the diocese, and it will again shortly June 20, 2014, edition By Bob Zyskowski Joe’s coming back. That’s the good news. With the arrival of July, Joe Towalski returns to The Visitor and to the Diocese of St….

I wish I could be at my own funeral

Since we know not the hour, it might not be too soon to plan for our last days on this side of the grass May 23, 2014, edition I wish I could be at my own funeral. Before you send for the men in the white coats, hear me out. What I mean to say…