Surrender & Strength

What Others Think Of Us

I have had numerous conversations with friends and professional acquaintances over the years on the subject of openly sharing our Catholic faith. I am always a little surprised at how often many of them express strong reluctance to being open about their beliefs. The reasons given have included, “I don’t want to offend anyone.” “We could never do that at […]

Powerful Lessons from St. Joseph for Father’s Day

As the father of a nineteen-year-old with high-functioning autism, I am sometimes challenged to give my oldest child the focus and patience he needs from me.  I frequently feel inadequate when I advise and guide my fifteen-year-old son through the minefields of today’s culture.  My loving wife should expect my best efforts as a husband, yet I often feel distracted […]

What are the Obstacles Between Catholic Men and Christ?

“As long as we live in the world our life is a constant struggle between love for Christ or giving into lukewarmness, to our passions, or to comfort seeking, which destroys love. Faithfulness to Christ is forged each day by struggling against what separates us from him, and by an effort to make progress in virtue. Then they will be […]

Photograph © by Andy Coan

A Simple and Public Act of Faith

“Our behavior will be the proving ground of our deepest convictions.  This firmness in the Faith is often an excellent testimony to the beliefs of the Christian.  In some cases it can cause people to begin their return to the House of the Father” (Francis Fernandez; In Conversation with God). Several weeks ago I had lunch with one of my new clients, […]

Dads, Do We Have Our Acts Together?

During a recent coffee meeting, a friend said, “You seem to have your act together on the fatherhood front. What’s your secret?” I was surprised and taken aback because I don’t think I have my act together at all. I don’t mean that out of false humility. I pray every day to be a better husband and father because I […]

Man at Prayer

Praying the Daily Examen

I have had numerous discussions recently about finding time for daily prayer and reflection.  People have been interested in how I keep the Jesuit Daily Examen on my calendar, so I am sharing it here along with suggested times.  The Examen is one of the most effective (and easiest) ways I know to have scheduled reflection and prayer throughout the […]

"Supper at Emmaus" (detail) by Caravaggio

Four Lessons from Emmaus Road for the Anxious and Discouraged

We are all likely familiar with the “walk to Emmaus” (Luke 24:13-35) by two of Christ’s disciples the evening of the Resurrection in Luke’s Gospel.  These two men, overcome with hopelessness and discouragement, were talking about the incredible events they had witnessed over the previous few days as they were walking to their home village of Emmaus outside of Jerusalem.  […]

St. Michael the Archangel

Five Positive Ways to Be a Catholic Rebel

Come on, we know better than the Church, don’t we?  After all, this is the 21st Century and times have changed.  Modern man is fully capable of deciding what is moral on his own, right?  All the really smart people in the media, government and academia who encourage us to embrace abortion, contraception, euthanasia and gay marriage can’t be wrong, […]

On Living with Greater Intention

“Will-power. A very important quality. Don’t despise little things, for by the continual practice of denying yourself again and again in such things — which are never futile or trivial — with God’s grace you will add strength and resilience to your character. In that way you will first become master of yourself, and then a guide, a chief, a […]

Practicing Acceptance and Seeing Burdens as Blessings

Not long ago a priest shared some guidance with my wife and me that has been the cause of a great deal of conversation and reflection in our home.  In response to learning that we pray every day about our oldest son’s future and that he be healed of his autism, he encouraged us to pray first for acceptance. Let […]