July 2021

Keeping faith in college looks different for everyone

Keeping faith in college looks different for everyone

Guest column, July 2021
By Kassondra Gooley Jeremiah 29:11 reads, “For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future,” yet sometimes the struggles of college can cause one to question if this is truly God’s plan. College brings late nights and tough classes, and causes you to question your choices and beliefs. Failures and fears often leave college students wondering if God equipped them. Sometimes it is difficult to remember that God’s definition of success, his definition of prosperity, can be different than our definition. What do you do when God laughs at your plans? That is one of the questions college students must discover the answer to. When I started college, I didn’t think I would add…
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The Unified Life: Bringing your faith to work

The Unified Life: Bringing your faith to work

Featured, July 2021
By Renae Kranz In today’s world, bringing faith into the workplace seems like a terrifying prospect. Very few of us want to approach a co-worker to talk about religion, and fewer would even know how to do that. Let me relieve your anxiety. Bringing faith to work doesn’t have to mean overtly talking about your beliefs about divine realities. It’s more about revealing your entire self to the people around you and living the virtues of your Catholic faith in all areas of life. It’s about living an integrated, whole life with God always at the center of the things we do and say. And it’s easier than you might think. Meaning in work [caption id="attachment_5955" align="alignright" width="300"] Joe Rutten, director of the Benedictine Leadership Institute at Mount Marty University.…
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Lumen Christi spreads joyful missionary spirit

Headlines, July 2021
[caption id="attachment_5944" align="alignright" width="300"] The Lumen Christi missionaries for 2021.[/caption] Lumen Christi missionaries have been traveling around the diocese this summer, bringing the love of God to young and old alike. Twenty-two missionaries broken into teams have been using outreach events, small group discipleship and participation in community and life of the Church to help form Lifelong Catholic Missionary Disciples Through God’s Love. Formerly Totus Tuus, Lumen Christi is a diocesan missionary formation program that forms young men and women to be effective evangelists, sharing the love of Christ they have experienced in their own lives. Father Andy Thuringer spent time training the missionaries this year, which he says has been a real blessing. “This year we focused on the creation story in Genesis. Our missionaries are excited to share…
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Memo to managers: Bring your Catholic values to work

Memo to managers: Bring your Catholic values to work

July 2021, Missionary Discipleship
By Dana Hess Being a manager in a business and a Catholic may seem like two vocations at odds. Mixing the two may seem awkward at best and, at worst, the fast lane to alienating employees. However, bringing Catholic virtues to the workplace doesn’t mean preaching so much as using Christ’s lessons to set a good example. “There’s opportunities that present themselves where you have an opportunity to witness to people,” says Jo Vitek, former chief of police in Watertown. “Most of the time, it doesn’t even have to be verbally. It can just be by your actions, your integrity, how you handle things.” In law enforcement for 36 years, Jo didn’t shrink from sharing her faith in the workplace. Police officers need to be grounded in faith, she says,…
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Why does it matter if I’m Catholic?

Why does it matter if I’m Catholic?

Does the Church have an answer?, July 2021
Wow! Two great questions in the same question! I’d be happy to try to answer them. Let’s start with the first. As I say all the time, one of my favorite questions with regard to our Catholic faith is one often found on the lips of little children, including my own kids, and that’s the one we’re talking about here: “Why?” As in, “Why do we believe what we believe?” or “Why do we do what we do?” Sometimes our answer to these questions is, “well, that’s just the way we do things as Catholics,” but at other times, we want more, we need more. We ask this tiny question: “Why?” In fact, and as I indicated in April’s column, I think this is one of the most important questions…
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Putting vocation ahead of occupation keeps life directed toward God

Putting vocation ahead of occupation keeps life directed toward God

July 2021, Next Generation Catholic
By Mikaela Pannell The words “vocation” and “occupation” are sometimes used interchangeably, particularly in the world of work. For example, technical colleges are often called vocational schools. When used in a Catholic setting, however, we find they actually mean very different things. An occupation is another word for a job or career. Whether it’s spending your summer as a nanny or a lifeguard between semesters or in a career as a doctor or a lawyer, your occupation is what you do for work. A vocation, on the other hand, is your calling from God to the priesthood, religious life or marriage. In today’s world, it can be easy to fall into the habit of allowing our occupation to overshadow our vocation. In reality, our vocation is the umbrella overarching all…
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The gift of my faith-filled farming parents

The gift of my faith-filled farming parents

Bishop DeGrood's Column, July 2021
Little did I know as a kid the gift of the impact of my faith-filled farming parents. I suspect like many of us it is easy to take things for granted or to not really see the full value of something until many years later in life. As I grow older, it seems I grow ever more grateful for the faith and farming background of my parents, and how their witness has left a lasting and crucially important impact upon me. My mother’s parents were not able to financially provide for busing for my mom to go to a Catholic high school, but a Catholic education was so very important to them. So my mother lived with a family in town during her high school years and helped the family…
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