The Official Newspaper of the Diocese of Little Rock

The Catholic way of death

Therefore, stay awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour.
Matthew 25:13

You have kept the commandments, faithfully attended Mass and loved the Lord and your neighbor. But are you truly ready to die? Every family needs practical tools to handle their responsibilities around the time of a loved one’s death. Here are some articles to help you decide, plan and express your wishes clearly.


In dying, Catholics can still ‘live completely in Christ’

By Aprille Hanson, Published: November 3, 2020   

On Oct. 28, 2017, John Phillips, 55, died of esophageal cancer. It had been a three-year journey, with several rounds of chemotherapy and radiation, doctors’ visits, research and prayer. Six months before his death, he prayerfully chose, along with his wife Catherine, to stop pursuing an unlikely cure, considered a burdensome endeavor when his final months could be spent with his family.  He chose palliative care for months and eventually in-home hospice the final two weeks More... 

Burial must respect body, faith in resurrection

By Aprille Hanson, Published: November 2, 2020   

The proper burial of a body is more than just respecting the dead -- it’s respecting the life that was lived.  Founded in the teachings of Jesus and his example of burial following his death on the cross, “bury the dead” is one of seven corporal works of mercy.  “The way a person is laid to rest we see as important in that largely because we believe the body has dignity, has a real dignity; not only More... 

Burial niches on parish grounds gaining popularity

By Aprille Hanson, Published: October 30, 2020   

When Theodore BrauBurger and his wife Theresa attend Sunday morning Mass at St. Stephen Church in Bentonville, they are also able to visit his father’s final resting place. “I think it’s powerful. I really do,” he said, of his father being interred in a niche at the St. Stephen columbarium. “As a matter of fact, his birthday was the 17th of this month so it’s kind of nice to be able to go out there and More... 

What to expect when planning your funeral Mass

By Aprille Hanson, Published: October 29, 2020   

Catholics have hope in the resurrection and the culmination of that belief is evident in a funeral Mass.  “It’s an opportunity for us to reconfirm and celebrate our faith in Jesus, our crucified and risen Lord. To pray for the repose of the person’s soul and God’s mercy on them,” said Father Bill Elser, pastor of Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in Hot Springs Village. However, while Catholics go to great lengths to plan everything from baptisms More... 

Write your will; your children will thank you

Published: October 28, 2020   

Most people do not have a will or plan for their estate, though it should be a priority.  This is the experience of Dan Young, a lawyer with Rose Law Firm in Little Rock and a parishioner of Our Lady of the Holy Souls, who focuses on estate planning and trust and estate administration. Cost is sometimes an issue, as a generic estate plan can cost from $1,700 to $2,000. While it is an investment, it can More...