Liturgy & Sacraments

Priests and Marriage Preparation

One of the duties of parish priests is to prepare couples for the Sacrament of Matrimony. Many priests love this work. Others admit they find parts of it taxing. But almost all parish priests do it, dedicate quite a lot of time to doing it, and, like other aspects of priestly work, try to do it well. That’s why it […]

Marriage: The Union of One Woman and One Man

The Marriage Minute

This is a Marriage Minute from Integrated Catholic Life with Mike Carlton. Use the player to listen to listen or download the mp3 audio file. Have you ever had an argument with your spouse and wondered when things in the house would return to normal? Arguments are going to happen. Try to address them as they come and not let them […]

Marriage: The Union of One Woman and One Man

The Marriage Minute

This is a Marriage Minute from Integrated Catholic Life with Mike Carlton. Use the player to listen to listen or download the mp3 audio file. Have you ever wondered why some couples get married in the church then stop going? If Church was important to the wedding, then maybe Church is important to the marriage. Jesus elevated marriage to be a […]

Marriage: The Union of One Woman and One Man

The Marriage Minute

This is a Marriage Minute from Integrated Catholic Life with Mike Carlton. Use the player to listen to listen or download the mp3 audio file. Have you been to a wedding and quietly wondered how long the marriage would last?  Sounds like a terrible thought on such a wonderful occasion, but these days divorce rates are high. What makes a good […]

Photograph Copyright © by Deacon Michael Bickerstaff

Jesus Christ Truly Present

The Mass readings for the Solemnity of The Body and Blood of Christ (Year B) are: Exodus 24:3-8; Psalms 116:12-13, 15-16, 17-18; Hebrews 9:11-15; Mark 14:12-16, 22-26. Use the player to listen to listen to the homily or download the mp3 audio file. The Altar of Sacrifice of the Old Covenant The passage from Exodus used for today’s first reading recounts the […]

"Adoration of the Shepherds" (detail) by Murillo

Learning from the Shepherds at Midnight Mass

This message, indeed, “cannot leave us indifferent.” Because it is true, “it changes everything.” There is something beautifully symbolic about the tradition of Midnight Mass. It shows that Christians are so eager for Christmas to begin that they want to start celebrating on the first moment of Christmas day. People who ordinarily never go out late at night and are […]

Mission Dolores Altar (San Francisco) Photograph © by Andy Coan

Truly Right and Just Thanksgiving

From November 25, 2016… It is truly right and just At every Mass, one of the most significant dialogues in human life occurs. The priest says, “Let us give thanks to the Lord our God,” the faithful respond, “It is right and just,” and the priest replies with a saying of great theological depth: “It is truly right and just, […]

(Fr.) Blessed Stanley Rother

Following the Brave Shepherd All the Way

The beatification of Father Stanley Rother on September 23 in Oklahoma City, which I was privileged to attend, was unforgettably moving. I feel a little like Saints Peter and John in the Acts of the Apostles when they said, “We cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard!” (Acts 4:20). So I would like to share with you […]

"Adoration of the Mystic Lamb" (detail) by van Eyck

What is Happening at Mass?

As many Catholics know, the Second Vatican Council famously referred to the liturgy as the “source and summit of the Christian life.” And following the prompts of the great figures of the liturgical movement in the first half of the twentieth century, the Council Fathers called for a fuller, more conscious, and more active participation in the liturgy on the […]

St. Peter Chanel Catholic Church, Roswell, Georgia—Photography © by Michael Bickerstaff

Avoiding Embarrassing Situations Receiving Holy Communion

I was recently making a retreat at a Monastery in the Catskills. At Sunday Mass, I was asked by the Chaplain to distribute the Precious Blood to the nuns and lay people in attendance. At one point there was a little delay as I was giving the Chalice to the lay guests; the priest Celebrant, distributing the Sacred Hosts, was […]