Into the Deep

Into the Deep offers practical insight and encouragement for being a faithful disciple of Jesus Christ.  Deacon Bickerstaff draws from Sacred Scripture, Church teaching and personal testimony to help readers life the faith throughout the day. Each week, he reflects and teaches on a passage from the bible, a truth of the faith, a Person of God, an event in the life of Christ or his saints, in a way that resonates with readers more important questions about life.

The Ascension of the Lord and Our Mission

"Ascension of Christ" (detail) by Garofalo

Years before that first Ascension Thursday, God entered into His own creation as the God-man, Jesus. He came as a humble babe, conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. His birth took place in a stable that housed livestock. Little is recorded of His early years; He was a thirty-year-old when He began His public ministry. […]

Joy and Hope During A Pandemic

"The Baptism of the Eunich" (detail) by Rembrandt / Public domain

The world has been on lockdown and edge for nearly two months as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Lives have been disrupted in significant ways. Although this is not unheard of in a human history that is marked with war, disease and natural disasters, it is new to many people alive today. And such disruptions are a severe blow […]

Do People See Christ When They Look at You?

"Christ and the Rich Young Ruler" (detail) by Heinrich Hofmann / Public domain

“As I have loved you, so you also should love one another” (John 13:34). In John 14:15, Jesus tells his apostles, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.”  In this passage, Jesus is preparing His Apostles for His departure and the coming of the Holy Spirit. After three long years with them, these are among His final words […]

Be Not Afraid—Listen to the Voice of the Good Shepherd

"Christ, the Good Shepherd" (detail) by Murillo

“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want…” (Psalm 23:1). Who We Are It is incredibly important that we fully know and understand who we are.We are God’s special creation. He has made each of us in His image and likeness, in freedom and love and invited us to spend all eternity sharing in His glory and blessedness in […]

Our Deepest Desire is Satisfied on the Road to Emmaus

"Super at Emmaus" (detail) by Caravaggio / Public domain

Reflection on the Mass readings for the Third Sunday of Easter (Year A) — Acts 2:14, 22-28; Psalms 16:1-2, 5, 7-8, 9-10, 11; First Peter 1:17-21; Luke 24:13-35. Deep within each and every one of us there is a hunger and a thirst.  We all experience this yearning of the soul—a heart that burns with longing, but we don’t always recognize what […]

Give Your Life to Jesus and His Divine Mercy

Vilnius Image of Divine Mercy (detail) by Kazimierowski

Jesus is waiting for you right here, right now. He is all holy and He desires you to be in communion with Him. For that, you do not in this life need to be perfect; you need to be forgiven, to be healed and to be contrite and desire holiness. Give your life to Jesus today. Make that committment. Christ […]

New Life in Christ

"The Resurrection of Christ" (detail) by Bloch

Christ is Risen! Truly He is Risen! What more fitting conclusion to a week of drama wrought by sin could there be than the triumph of Life over death! There is so much about Easter to help us live our lives in our day. Surely we can more fully embrace all that the Resurrection of Jesus Christ means for us today if we go […]

Finding Joy in the Midst of Sorrow

"Christ's Entry into Jerusalem" by Hippolyte Flandrin

The Cross is the great paradox of Christianity. More than a few people have asked me over the years why the Catholic Church focuses so prominently and persistently on the Crucifix. One inquirer even suggested that the Crucifix hanging above the Altar is too intense a reminder of the sorrow in the world and that she would never join a […]

The Resurrection and the Life

"The Raising of Lazarus" (detail) by Carl Bloch

The Final Journey to Jerusalem Begins The account of the raising of Lazarus from the dead by Jesus is the seventh of the seven signs in St. John’s Gospel that announce the fulfillment of the Old Covenant in the New Covenant and the passing away of the old rites, replaced by the grace and sacraments of Jesus Christ. It is also the […]

When All Creation Held its Breath

The Annunciation (St. Gabriel and the Blessed Virgin Mary) by Paolo de Matteis [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The Moment There is a singular moment which defines all history; a moment to which all that came before, all that has come after, and all that is yet to come points as supremely significant—the Incarnation. On March 25th of each Liturgical Year, we remember the event that took place—the moment when the Blessed Virgin Mary gave her fiat to God’s request that […]