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Singing for Life View Comments
By Susan Hines-Brigger

FOR COUNTRY SINGER Collin Raye, “music is like breathing.” In the 1990s, Raye was a leading figure in the country music industry, with 16 number-one hits, a total of 24 top-10 songs, and many other honors. He began singing at the age of 7 and says his goal was always to make it in the music business. He talked about that goal, his career, his faith, and his advocacy when he stopped by Franciscan Media some months back for an interview.

“I wanted hit records,” he says. “I wanted my name to be known. I wanted to perform in front of a lot of people—all the reasons a young person wants to do this.”

Starting at the age of 15, he worked to get a record deal. When he finally got one in 1990, Raye, now 53, says he gave glory to God and thought, “For some reason God had kept this from me because he knew I wasn’t ready— either professionally or mentally.”


Susan Hines-Brigger is the managing editor of this magazine and editor of the new digital magazine Liberty + Vine.

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John of Monte Corvino: At a time when the Church was heavily embroiled in nationalistic rivalries within Europe, it was also reaching across Asia to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ to the Mongols. John of Monte Corvino went to China about the same time Marco Polo was returning. 
<p>John was a soldier, judge and doctor before he became a friar. Prior to going to Tabriz, Persia (present-day Iran), in 1278, he was well known for his preaching and teaching. In 1291 he left Tabriz as a legate of Pope Nicholas IV to the court of Kublai Khan. An Italian merchant, a Dominican friar and John traveled to western India where the Dominican died. When John and the Italian merchant arrived in China in 1294, Kublai Khan had recently died. </p><p>Nestorian Christians, successors to the dissidents of the fifth-century Council of Ephesus’ teaching on Jesus Christ, had been in China since the seventh century. John converted some of them and also some of the Chinese, including Prince George from Tenduk, northwest of Beijing. Prince George named his son after this holy friar. </p><p>John established his headquarters in Khanbalik (now Beijing), where he built two churches; his was the first resident Catholic mission in the country. By 1304 he had translated the Psalms and the New Testament into the Tatar language. </p><p>Responding to two letters from John, Pope Clement V named John Archbishop of Khanbalik in 1307 and consecrated seven friars as bishops of neighboring dioceses. One of the seven never left Europe. Three others died along the way to China; the remaining three bishops and the friars who accompanied them arrived there in 1308. </p><p>When John died in 1328, he was mourned by Christians and non-Christians. His tomb quickly became a place of pilgrimage. In 1368, Christianity was banished from China when the Mongols were expelled and the Ming dynasty began. John’s cause has been introduced in Rome.</p> American Catholic Blog We look ahead to the coming of the Son of Man, standing erect and with heads held high. We live in hope, not in fear. Our experience of God is no longer limited by human weakness or even human sinfulness. God has always been one step ahead of us, with a plan that exceeds our greatest desires.

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