Apologetics Corner

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

“Have you been saved?”

Have You Been Saved? In Acts 4, St. Peter delivers a powerful sermon. He concludes by saying, “There is no salvation through anyone else, nor is there any other name under heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved.” I have written before in these pages of the time when I was growing up in the […]

"The Taking of Christ" (detail) by Caravaggio

Six Obstacles to Evangelizing in the Modern Age

“Indeed, let us continue to go out and teach all nations!” As members of the Body of Christ striving for communion with the saints, we are faced with an essential mission contingent upon first picking up our crosses. Our primary duty is to cultivate our interior habits of being by prayer, fasting and almsgiving. Good works follow the cultivation of […]

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 […]

God in Three Persons — Blessed Trinity

Mass readings for the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity (Year B) — Deuteronomy 4:32-34, 39-40; Psalms 33:4-5, 6, 9, 18-19, 20, ; Romans 8:14-17; Matthew 28:16-20.  Use the player to listen to the homily or download the mp3 audio file. We are able to know certain eternal truths without the light of faith. According the Church for example, the greatest truth […]

Photography © by Carmelite Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Los Angeles

Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament: Holding Jesus Twice

I am alone, and yet I’m not.  It’s silent, which is strange and disconcerting, coming as I do from a life full of noise and activity.  When I have been there a while, immersed in some reading that I can’t seem to absorb when I read it anywhere else, I notice that it is not, in fact, completely quiet.  There’s […]

"Madonna and Child" (detail) by Sassoferrato

Three Powerful Lessons from the Blessed Mother

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; Blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen. For quite some time, I have had a desire to write about my ever growing appreciation and deepening […]

Flowering Crabapple Tree

The Tree That Wouldn’t Bloom

Spring has finally arrived, I thought, as I breathed in the clean air and scanned the landscape around me. It had been a long winter, longer than in many years past, and the new life was a welcome reprieve from the bitter, colorless angst of winter. Day by day, my older girls would happily trot outside to explore the newness […]

"Creation of Adam" (detail) by Michelangelo

Identity — Can What We Do Diminish Who We Are?

This thing about identity—there’s more here than meets the eye, more here than most psychologists talk about, more here than we can understand, and what I’m going to present is more questions than answers. But I think it’s a profound point, so I’ll say it. This point that our very selfhood is by nature unstable and in question, this is […]

Whose Truth Will Set You Free?

“It’s a non-denominational Bible Study,” my friend’s wife said at the restaurant. “It’s not tied to one Church or another, so it’s really good for everyone,” she explained with a confidence that nobody would be offended. She was excited to tell us about this new program she was coordinating with other women from her neighborhood.  She explained they were of “all faith […]

“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 […]