Mother Teresa was contradiction to secular world

Re: “Pope Francis declares Mother Teresa a saint” (News Analysis, Sept. 18).

We Catholics are elated at the canonization of Mother Teresa, who was nearly a perfect sign of contradiction to the secular world.

For those with eyes to see, Mother Teresa exemplified the visible workings of God’s grace, whatever her critics said. Christopher Hitchens was a prime example of the world’s power brokers attacking a saint whom they cannot understand and whom they detest.

What kind of a man slanders a nun who spent her life caring for lepers and untouchables in India’s still very caste-minded culture?

Matt Terranova, Hackensack, New Jersey

Leaving the Faith

Re: “The hard truth” (Editorial, Aug. 28).

The OSV editorial states research shows that in the last 50 years, a primary reason for the decline of Catholicism is due to “a lack of demonstrably effective faith formation of Catholics, young and old.” This 50-year period coincides with the Vatican II period, which resulted in effectively discarding the Catechism as the primary tool of catechetical instruction of Catholics. Many regarded the Catechism as an elegant and concise presentation of Catholic doctrine, unambiguously expressed, and reinforced for proper retention. What replaced the Catechism were textbooks that had diluted doctrinal content and lacked proper reinforcement of the information that was taught. There was little offered to fully explain our relationship to God; to have a rightly formed conscience to help us act morally; and to understand the importance of the Mass, sacraments, and prayer in our lives.

M.P. Smyth, Finksburg, Maryland

Re: “Young people are leaving the Faith: Here’s why” (In Focus, Aug. 28).

To persuasively evangelize in today’s fast-paced world of disconnected thoughts, which confuse baptized Catholics, sharp, simple and incisive slogans are essential for the theologically uneducated.

“God is a scientist,” “God is a biologist,” God is an inventor” would be simple starters.

Robert Bonisignore, Brooklyn, New York

Re: “Young people are leaving the Faith: Here’s why” (In Focus, Aug. 28).

I enjoy reading the newspaper. However this article is one for which I wanted to make a response. First of all, I think the matter is more complicated then the author presents. It is not entirely because the “science wins out” as presented in the article. Many factors are involved.

However I believe a great deal of the problem has to do with members of the Faith. We are not relating the message in a way that is meaningful.

I often reflect upon a comment made by a 23-year-old after seeing “Ben Hur”: How did you get involved with all this God stuff?

That is a lead to expressing one’s faith. Hopefully, it will be meaningful to the young person.

Throughout the past few years, there have been articles and movies representing a belief in a higher power. Even Albert Einstein had alluded to the thought that there is a higher source (however you want to label it). After all his science research, even Stephen Hawking (“Theory of Everything”) also came away with the thought of a higher power.

Barbara Floryshak, Malta, New York

Faith in public life

Re: “Politicians in the pews” (Perspectives, Aug. 7).

Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Tim Kaine, high officials in the federal government, claim that they are against the killing of little babies in the wombs of their mothers but protect the right of others to do so.

Contrary to Msgr. Campion’s advice not to judge, voters have the right to judge whether a candidate is capable of doing the job of rooting out government-sponsored immorality.

Reynaldo Yana, Saipan
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