The Catholic Faith Explained

"The Martyrdom of St. James" (detail)
by Giovanni Battista Piazzetta"The Martyrdom of St. James" (detail) by Giovanni Battista Piazzetta

Je Ne Suis Pas Charlie

These dark times are difficult to decipher partially because moral and intellectual considerations have been subsumed by material considerations; thus reducing the moral and legal considerations to the positive legal aspect alone. Vital ideas like justice, freedom, and morality have been badly deformed by reduction and misuse. There is no quantifiable way to discuss the tragic loss in France incurred […]

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

I Believe in God

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. Paul […]

"Christ in the Desert (detail)" by Ivan Kramskoy"Christ in the Desert (detail)" by Ivan Kramskoy

Why Catholics Practice Fast and Abstinence?

Would you like to know the secret to a better, deeper, more joyful life in Christ? Of course you would.  We all would. Our bookstores are filled with books written to help us advance in prayer and the spiritual life. The “secret” we all look for is really no secret at all.  At its heart, the gospel message is one […]

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

Imago Dei

The renowned psychologist, Paul C. Vitz, has made the tragic observation that “America is the most polytheistic nation in history; we worship over 350 million gods.” So disconnected have we become from the truth about the human person that we do indeed fancy ourselves our own creators. Through a confluence of intellectual errors, philosophical hubris, educational disintegration and moral decay, […]

“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 […]

"Sermon on the Mount" St. Matthew's Church altarpiece by Henrik Olrik"Sermon on the Mount" St. Matthew's Church altarpiece by Henrik Olrik

The Divine Roots of Human Learning

“If we return to the educational pedagogy grounded on the Christian anthropology embodying the Imago Dei we will much better serve our children as we fulfill our Christian duty to educate them.” The finest education known to man springs from the heart of Holy Mother Church. Catholic education by way of the medieval university beckoned its students forward by examining […]

Archbasilica of St. John Lateran
Arcibasilica Papale di San Giovanni in LateranoArchbasilica of St. John Lateran Arcibasilica Papale di San Giovanni in Laterano

Who Needs Church Buildings?

Editor’s Note: November 9th is the Feast of the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica in Rome. As a rebellious teenager, I thought that Catholics should stop wasting their money on expensive churches.  We ought to sell them all and buy food for the poor, I argued. Funny thing.  Jesus, who cared much for the poor, did not have this attitude.  […]

"Return of the Prodigal Son" (detail) by Murillo"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 […]

"Guardian Angel" (detail) by Pietro da Cortona"Guardian Angel" (detail) by Pietro da Cortona

Encounters with Angels

A visit to the local bookstore will reveal a whole shelf of books on angel encounters, angel channeling, and angelology. There’s even a book called The Physics of Angels which tries to blend quirky physics theories with the theology of St Thomas Aquinas. A quick look at the books on offer make you realize that the New Age understanding of angels stretches […]

"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. […]