Bible & Tradition

Night image of St. Peter's Basilica, Ponte Sant’Angelo and Tiber River in Rome, Italy.Night image of St. Peter's Basilica, Ponte Sant’Angelo and Tiber River in Rome, Italy.

Who’s in authority here?

All the beliefs that divide Catholics from fundamentalists are derived from the teaching authority of the Church. Because Catholics believe in the Church, they believe a fuller, more complex and mysterious set of things than the narrowed down fundamentalist. Thus, the Church is the essential point of divergence. In the fundamentalist view, the Catholic Church exalts itself over the Bible, [...]

"St. Jerome Writing" by Caravaggio"St. Jerome Writing" by Caravaggio

Whose Bible is it, anyway?

We needn’t be bitter in defending our beliefs. Even though many fundamentalists think the Catholic Church is under the control of Satan and all or most Catholics are headed for hell, not all think that — and we shouldn’t think the same of them. However narrow-minded their faith often is, it’s also usually genuine, both in personal sincerity and in [...]

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

“Have you been saved?” – How Should Catholics Respond?

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 [...]

"St. Jerome Writing" (detail) by Caravaggio"St. Jerome Writing" (detail) by Caravaggio

Why the Protestant Approach to Scripture Cannot be Right

The Protestant Belief in Sola Scripture (Scripture Alone) One of the “pillars” or founding principles of the Protestant Reformation is the Protestant teaching of Sola Scriptura. Simply defined, Sola Scriptura is the belief that the Bible alone is the sole rule of faith for the believer. In other words, if a teaching is not contained in the Bible, then it is to [...]

Night image of St. Peter's Basilica, Ponte Sant’Angelo and Tiber River in Rome, Italy.Night image of St. Peter's Basilica, Ponte Sant’Angelo and Tiber River in Rome, Italy.

Does Jesus Want Us “Out of the Church”?

I just read a news story praising a Nashville-based literary agency that represents “top progressive Christian authors.” It stated that many of the authors have been influenced by Phyllis Tickle, who penned, The Great Emergence: How Christianity is Changing and Why.  Such a book smacks of the differences between Protestants and Catholics. Whereas they talk about changing, Catholics talk about a “New [...]

Jerome in Meditation by CaravaggioJerome in Meditation by Caravaggio

Why Sola Scriptura Cannot be True

The Protestant Belief in Sola Scripture (Scripture Alone) One of the “pillars” or founding principles of the Protestant Reformation is the Protestant teaching of Sola Scriptura. Simply defined, Sola Scriptura is the belief that the Bible alone is the sole rule of faith for the believer. In other words, if a teaching is not contained in the Bible, then it is to [...]

Return of the Prodigal Son by MurilloReturn of the Prodigal Son by Murillo

“Have you been saved?” – Seven Lessons Every Catholic Should Know About Justification

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 [...]

Return of the Prodigal Son by MurilloReturn of the Prodigal Son by Murillo

A Catholic Responds – Five Common Protestant Objections to the Sacrament of Confession

In discussing the Catholic faith with non-Catholics, the doctrine concerning confessing one’s sins to a priest often arises. Indeed, in my experience, the Sacrament of Reconciliation ranks right up there with Marian Dogmas among the Church’s teachings that prompt the most questions from those inquiring about the Catholic Faith. The following objections to the doctrine are those about which I [...]

Photography by Carmelite SistersPhotography by Carmelite Sisters

The Holy Bible – How is This Book True?

by Sister Benedicta Marie, O.C.D. Carmelite Sisters of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angeles The Bible expresses the eternal and immutable Word of God, not on nautical charts with cartographer’s symbols, but in a ‘map’ whose symbols are those of literature. The Importance of Formulations and Symbols of Faith C.S. Lewis (1898-1963), novelist, academic, medievalist, literary critic, essayist, lay [...]

The Genesis Problem

I’m continually amazed how often the “problem” of Genesis comes up in my work of evangelization and apologetics. What I mean is the way people struggle with the seemingly bad science that is on display in the opening chapters of the first book of the Bible. How can anyone believe that God made the visible universe in six days, that [...]