The Catholic Faith Explained

“Christ at 33” (detail) by Hofmann“Christ at 33” (detail) by Hofmann

I Believe in Jesus Christ

To profess belief in the second person of the Most Holy Trinity carries with it unfathomable implications because full understanding lies rooted inconceivably beyond human reach in our eternal Creator. The Catechism elucidates the incarnation as we read: “we believe and confess that Jesus of Nazareth, born a Jew of a daughter of Israel at Bethlehem at the time of […]

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Demystifying the Gift of Tears

A few years ago, I read an article about the gift of tears and was immediately intrigued.  Most comments centered around people who said they weep freely at Mass when they never used to, or they perhaps became emotional unintentionally.  I had to scratch my head in befuddlement, because it seemed there was more to this mysterious spiritual phenomenon than […]

"The Exhortation to the Apostles" (detail) by James Tissot"The Exhortation to the Apostles" (detail) by James Tissot

I Believe in God

Credo When we say “I believe” as we recite the Apostle’s Creed we are making a statement about our Faith. The theological virtue of Faith is supernatural and infused by gift of the Holy Spirit. St. Thomas Aquinas points out that Faith is not only the first thing we need, but that we cannot be proper Catholics without it.1 St. […]

“The School of Athens” (detail showing Aristotle with the elder Plato) by Raphael“The School of Athens” (detail showing Aristotle with the elder Plato) by Raphael

The Four Causes of Holy Mother Church

“In the Nicene Creed we profess the four Marks of the Church which are one, holy, catholic and apostolic. These four marks are intrinsically intertwined. These are those things by which we can distinguish the true Church from a false one provided all four are properly fulfilled by the true nature and essence of the One True Church built upon […]

"Sacred Heart of Jesus" (detail) by Chambers"Sacred Heart of Jesus" (detail) by Chambers

Why you should practice devotion to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

One can discover a wide and deep variety of devotions and spiritualities in the Catholic faith. Devotion to the Sacred Heart is one of the most visible and important. Very few people whom I know would be unfamiliar with at least the title Sacred Heart. Many parishes and Catholic institutions are named in honor of and dedicated to the Sacred Heart. […]

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

Christ’s Gift of the Eucharist—Do you believe?

Today we celebrate the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ—Corpus Christi. Jesus began to prepare us for this great gift of the True Presence of His Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Most Holy Eucharist when He performed the miracle of the Multiplication of the Loaves and Fishes and by His Bread of Life Discourse. This teaching […]

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

Can you explain Purgatory to your friends?

Keeping it simple! On a recent Friday morning, while leading a bible study for retirees, the question of purgatory, the punishments due to sin, and salvation came up. They already possessed a 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 […]

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

Strengthen Your Eucharistic Faith

  Four Sundays ago, I mentioned here that the liturgical calendar of the Church was taking a short break from the Gospel of Mark, which we had been hearing this year at Sunday Mass. Next Sunday, we will return to Mark’s Gospel. Counting today, we have spent five consecutive Sundays hearing from the sixth chapter of John’s Gospel. Its content has […]

"Creation of Adam" (detail) by Michelangelo"Creation of Adam" (detail) by Michelangelo

The Three Views of the Human Person

There are two ways to view the world. We either attempt to see the world rightly as it was intended by the divine author, or we fancy ourselves the arbiters of truth and pronounce the nature of things by our own lights. When it comes to the human person there are at least three distinct ways to see and understand […]

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Pray the Most Holy Rosary!

Venerable Archbishop Fulton Sheen once explained the goal of prayer by deliberating on age. He asked the question, “What does it mean to get old?” He answered that we get old in a measure that determines our chronological distance from the source of life. We are born and we count the increasing years that further separate us from the womb; […]