Tom Hoopes is Vice President of College Relations and writer in residence at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas. He has written for the Register for more than 20 years and was its executive editor for 10. His writing has appeared in First Things’ First Thoughts, National Review Online, Crisis, Our Sunday Visitor, Inside Catholic and Columbia. He has served as press secretary for the Chairman of the U.S. House Ways & Means Committee. He and his wife, April, were editorial co-directors of Faith & Family magazine for 5 years. They have nine children.
Feeling down? Here’s a sort of a perrennial list, but a helpful one, I think, from this week’s editorial 10 Signs of Hope.
1. New Catholic Colleges.
“They will surprise us with what they accomplish.”
2. Young Catholics.
“They are comfortable with the new mediums of video and viral Internet messages.”
3. Pro-Life Majority.
“The slow and steady rise of right-to-life support sharpened this year.”
4. Renaissance of Religious Life.
“Many of the houses of [habited] nuns are experiencing a crisis of a different kind: not enough room for all the new postulants.”
5. “John Paul II” and “Benedict XVI” Priests.
“In 2005, new priests were more likely to subscribe to the Register than to a dissenting Catholic newspaper.”
6. Bishops’ Increased Engagement.
“This spring, dozens of bishops [make that more than 80!] taught that the University of Notre Dame is violating bishops’ guidelines by honoring President Barack Obama at the height of his legislative assault on the right to life.”
7. Renewal of the Liturgy.
“Nearly every year since the Jubilee Year 2000 (which Pope John Paul II called “profoundly Eucharistic’) has seen a major document come from the Vatican on the Eucharist, seeking to renew the Mass and return it to its roots.”
8. New Interest in Catholicism.
[And Christianity!]God Is Back: How the Global Revival of Faith Is Changing the World is the new book by the editor of The Economist.
As Pope Benedict XVI said last year in Washington: “To a great extent, the renewal of the Church in America depends on the renewal of the practice of penance.”
10. Eucharistic Adoration.
The number of chapels offering exposition of the Blessed Sacrament has swelled to 7,046, and more than 800 chapels in the United States now offer perpetual adoration.