Into the Deep

"Return of the Prodigal Son" (detail) by Murillo

Purgatory — Perfected by the Love of God

Keeping it simple! Last Friday morning, while leading a bible study for about 40 retirees, the question of purgatory, the punishments due to sin, and salvation came up. They already possessed and good understanding of this important doctrine. But, the discussion reminded me that Purgatory remains one of the most misunderstood teachings of the Church, and maybe one that is least [...]

"The Assumption of the Virgin" (detail) by Guido Reni

Get Ready to Celebrate the Dormition and Assumption of Mary

On August 15th of each Liturgical Year, the Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This year, that date falls on next Friday. Mary’s earthly death has been nearly unanimously held by the Church’s theologians through the centuries. The Church’s liturgies affirm this. Indeed, the Solemnity of the Assumption was first known and celebrated as [...]

Surrender & Strength

Photograph © by Andy Coan

They Know I’m Catholic, Right?

I gave a talk one Sunday morning to the men’s club of a large Atlanta Methodist church at the request of an old friend. When he asked me to speak to this group months before the talk, I responded with a question which I would ask him repeatedly every time we got together: “They know I’m Catholic, right?” I engage [...]

Regular Feature

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The Joy of Difficult People

No sooner do I get my tendency to slip out with a word that I shouldn’t say under control than the Difficult People seem to crawl right out of the woodwork of my life. Now, I want to make one thing clear: I’m as difficult as any Difficult Person who comes my way. Thanks for asking, because I like my [...]

World is Ordered

The Christian Worldview is Necessary for Science

The development of science is one of the greatest modern testimonies to the axiom, “Truth cannot contradict truth.” A Christian worldview was, is, and always will be necessary for a proper study of the natural world, i.e. for science, to develop. Consider the following. The Christian worldview is not based on blind faith, as if everything is immediately dependent on the [...]

In the Spotlight

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Why I Chose to be Chaste

I decided very early on in my life that I was going to wait until marriage to have sex. I can’t take all the credit for being some amazingly religious and reverent young man who was destined for greatness in following every verse and commandment I had ever known. Surely being in a private, Catholic school since the third grade [...]

Dolphin Tale 2

Behind the Scenes of the New Movie, Dolphin Tale 2

Dreams don’t come with sequels and neither do movies based on true stories, but never say never. The true rescue of the dolphin Winter was a dream come true for Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMN) in Florida when the story became a wildly successful movie. It turned around the financially strapped aquarium—from 78,000 visitors a year to 750,000—while touching the hearts [...]

Daily Extras

Pope Benedict XVI (Philip Chidell / Shutterstock.com)

Daily Catholic Quote from Pope-emeritus Benedict XVI

“Is it consistent to profess our beliefs in church on Sunday, and then during the week to promote business practices or medical procedures contrary to those beliefs?  … Any tendency to treat religion as a private matter must be resisted. Only when their faith permeates every aspect of their lives do Christians become truly open to the transforming power of [...]

Pope St.  John Paul II

Daily Catholic Quote from Pope St. John Paul II

“Mary Most Holy goes on being the loving consoler of those touched by the many physical and moral sorrows which afflict and torment humanity. She knows our sorrows and our pains, because she too suffered, from Bethlehem to Calvary. ‘And thy soul too a sword shall pierce.’ Mary is our Spiritual Mother, and the mother always understands her children and [...]

Scripture Reflections

Photography © by Andy Coan

Exaltation of the Holy Cross

Terrorism is nothing new.  It’s probably as old as the human race. In fact the cradle of civilization, now Iraq, was the home of the most infamous terrorists of antiquity, the Assyrians.  Their goal was to conquer their neighbors in a way that would minimize  initial resistance and subsequent rebellion.  To do this, they knew fear would be their greatest [...]

Photography © by Andy Coan

Motivated by Love

I used to think that God’s law was like those dumb rules we had to put up with in grammar school, for example, “Thou shalt not chew gum in class.” They are arbitrary laws that bureaucrats came up with to keep them happy and the rest of us miserable. The goal of students is to break such rules whenever they [...]