Marcellino D'Ambrosio, Ph.D.

About the Author

Dr. Marcellino D’Ambrosio writes from Texas. For his resources on parenting and family life or information on his pilgrimages to Rome and the Holy Land, visit or call 1.800.803.0118.

Raised in Italian/Irish neighborhood in Providence, RI, Marcellino D’Ambrosio never thought about being anything else but Catholic. But like other Catholic teens, his faith was the last place he looked for fulfillment. Following in the footsteps of his parents, both professional performers in their single years, Marcellino set his sights on stardom, playing bass guitar in several popular rock bands by the time he was 16. At that time he encountered a group of Catholics whose Christian life was an exciting adventure, an adventure worth living for. So he laid his bass guitar aside and embarked on a road that led to a Ph.D. in historical theology from the Catholic University of America. His doctoral dissertation, written under the direction of the renowned Jesuit theologian, Avery Cardinal Dulles, focused on one of the theological lights of the Second Vatican Council, Henri Cardinal de Lubac, and his recovery of biblical interpretation of the early Church fathers.

His writing has been published in the international journal Communio, Abingdon’s Dictionary of Biblical Interpretation, the Tablet, Catholic Digest, Our Sunday Visitor, and Catholic News Service’s syndicated column "Faith Alive." His popular book, Exploring the Catholic Church and video course by the same name (known as Touching Jesus through the Church in the USA) have been used in hundreds of parishes all throughout the English speaking world. The Guide to the Passion: 100 Questions about the Passion of the Christ, of which he is co-author and co-editor, may prove to be the fastest-selling Catholic book of all time with over a million copies sold in less than three months.

Dr. D’Ambrosio, the father of five and a business owner, brings to his teaching a practical, down-to-earth perspective that makes his words easy to understand and put into practice. Audio and video recordings of his popular teaching are internationally distributed. He often appears on the international Eternal Word Television Network is regularly heard on the nationally syndicated radio show "Catholic Answers Live." Dr. D'Ambrosio has been a guest on Geraldo Rivera, At Large on FoxNews Channel, the Bill O'Reilly radio show and Radio America's news program Dateline: Washington.

In 2001 Dr. D’Ambrosio left his position at the University of Dallas to develop the work of Crossroads Productions, the apostolate of Catholic renewal and evangelization that he co-founded twenty years ago, and to more directly oversee the growth of Wellness Opportunities Group a company dedicated to helping people improve the quality of their lives physically, mentally, and financially. He, his wife Susan, and their five children, reside just outside of San Antonio, TX.

Author Archive Page
"Adoration of the Lamb" (detail) by van Eyck"Adoration of the Lamb" (detail) by van Eyck

Thanksgiving and the Eucharist

For Americans, the term “Thanksgiving” conjures up images of turkey and cranberry sauce, parades and bowl games.  These “traditions” have come to mark an event made a perpetual institution of American life by President Abraham Lincoln. But why did Lincoln proclaim the last Thursday in November as a national holiday?  Because it was clear to him that the blessings of […]

Photography © by Andy CoanPhotography © by Andy Coan

The King of Kings—Unlike any other

From the dawn of civilization, kings have arisen who have dreamed of possessing a world-wide dominion, a universal kingdom that would last forever.  Some have come close to conquering much of the known world—Alexander, Genghis Khan, Augustus Caesar, and Adolf Hitler, to name a few.  And some kingdoms have lasted a very long time, such as Rome whose Eastern half […]

Photography © by Andy CoanPhotography © by Andy Coan

Hasten the end…

Whenever I lead a trip to the Holy Land, the question inevitably comes, “Will we visit Armageddon?”  This refers, of course, to the battlefield surrounding the ancient city of Megiddo where some think the final confrontation will take place before the end of the world (Rev 16:16).  Catholics and Protestants alike have a fascination with the Scriptural accounts of the […]

Photography © by Andy CoanPhotography © by Andy Coan

The Widow’s Mite

The time lag between the two widows in this Sunday’s readings was considerable.  Lots of things change in eight hundred years. But one thing their two societies had in common—they offered neither social security, welfare, 401(k)s, nor pension plans.  With no husband to provide for them, both widows were literally at the mercy of those around them, totally dependent on […]

"The Madonna of Carmel and the Souls of the Purgatory" (detail) by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo"The Madonna of Carmel and the Souls of the Purgatory" (detail) by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo

All Souls Day — Remembering to Pray for the Dead

I’ll never forget that bleak January day when my father died.  It was very hard to believe in the resurrection as I watched the undertakers carry away his lifeless corpse in a body bag. But imagine this scene.  You are an unborn child who has lived in cozy but cramped quarters with your twin for nine months.  But now you […]

"All Saints" by Fra Angelico"All Saints" by Fra Angelico

All Saints Day — A Call to Holiness for All

At age sixteen, I thought that aspiring to holiness was out of the question.  If you really wanted to be holy, I thought, you had to be a priest, nun, or brother.  And you had to spend your days doing “religious stuff” like praying, preaching, teaching catechism, or serving the poor.  But I had developed an interest in the opposite […]

Photography © by Andy CoanPhotography © by Andy Coan

The Blind Man Speaks

There were hundreds in the crowd that day at Jericho.  No doubt all of them had needs, many of them urgent.  But this Sunday’s gospel tells us that apparently only one of them had the audacity to speak up and ask for help from the prophet that everyone had come to see. The man happened to be a blind beggar, […]

Photography © by Andy CoanPhotography © by Andy Coan

John, James and True Greatness

It was time to make their move.  Usually it was Peter who took the initiative, but now it was their turn.  They cleared their throats and asked the master for the best seats in the house, the places of honor right next to the throne. Of course, in this conversation, recounted in Sunday’s gospel, John and James were referring to […]

Photography © by Andy CoanPhotography © by Andy Coan

A Tale of Two Men

He was curious.  He had already fulfilled all the elementary requirements.  He was a decent person who hadn’t killed anybody, had honored his parents, and would never think of stealing another man’s goods or another man’s spouse.  But what would it take to advance beyond that to assurance of heaven, to perfection, to true intimacy with God? Curiosity is not […]

Photography © by Andy CoanPhotography © by Andy Coan

Marriage & Family

The Beatles wrote a song that was the sensation of 1967, “All you need is love.”  This the same point made a few years earlier by an ecumenical council of the Catholic Church. Gadium et Spes 24, Vatican II’s Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, says this: God is Trinity, a communion of persons who pour themselves out […]