Is it a sin to smoke marijuana?

Q: I have a question regarding the use of marijuana and whether it is considered a sin to smoke it recreationally now that it is legal in Washington state. I have a Catholic friend who smokes it and doesn’t seem to think that there is anything wrong with doing so. What does the church teach about using marijuana recreationally — is it a sin?

Do godparents have to be married in the church?

Q: We recently approached our pastor about having our child baptized. I said we wanted my older brother to be the godparent, but our pastor told us that even though he had received all of his sacraments of initiation, he was disqualified from being the sponsor because he was not married in the church. Needless to say, we are disappointed and upset. Was our pastor right in coming to this decision?

How to preach like the apostles

I have always loved the Acts of the Apostles and have often recommended it to those who are approaching the Bible for the first time. Filled with colorful narratives, adventure, martyrdom, persecution, journeys by sea, etc., it makes for stimulating reading indeed.

Pride, humility and social media

On a recent trip to Sacramento, from my home base in the Los Angeles area, I flew Southwest Airlines. In an idle moment, I reached for the magazine in the seatback pocket and commenced to leaf through it. I came across an article by a woman named Sarah Menkedick entitled “Unfiltered: How Motherhood Interrupted My Relationship with Social Media.” The piece was not only wittily and engagingly written; it also spoke to some pretty profound truths about our cultural situation today and the generation that has come of age under the influence of the internet. 

What is church teaching on burying cremated remains?

Q: My dad has been diagnosed with cancer and we’re not sure how much longer he will be with us. He has requested that his remains be cremated and that there be a funeral celebrated for him. My siblings think we should divide his ashes after his funeral and place them in urns in special places in our homes. What does the church teach about burying the ashes of a loved one?

The Case for Christ

“The Case for Christ” is a film adaptation of Lee Strobel’s best-selling book of the same name, one that has made an enormous splash in evangelical circles and beyond.

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