Surrender & Strength

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Extraordinary Faith from Ordinary Catholics

“In the doctrine of Christ there is no invitation to mediocrity, but a clear call to Heaven, to love and to cheerful sacrifice.” (Francis Fernandez, In Conversation with God) Feeling let down by politicians and public figures who say they are Catholic, but their words and actions are often contrary to the teachings of the Church? Do we seek good […]

Praying the RosaryPraying the Rosary

On Being Restless

“Thou movest us to delight in praising Thee; for Thou hast formed us for Thyself, and our hearts are restless till they find rest in Thee” (St. Augustine, Confessions). I think most writers are naturally introspective and reflective.  While in Eucharistic Adoration a week ago I prayed for many things, including strength and courage to stay focused on the path […]

Photography © by Randy HainPhotography © by Randy Hain

An Unquenchable Thirst for God

“ ‘Let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.’ Although man can forget God or reject him, He never ceases to call every man to seek him, so as to find life and happiness. But this search for God demands of man every effort of intellect, a sound will, ‘an upright heart,’ as well as the witness of […]

Pope Francis (neneo / Shutterstock.com)Pope Francis (neneo / Shutterstock.com)

Six Practical Steps to Catholic Joy

I recently had coffee with a fellow Catholic who gloomily shared his ongoing struggles with overtly living out his faith in the real world and reluctance to discuss his faith with others. He made it clear that going to Mass on Sunday was all he could or should be doing. Unfortunately, this is a very common tale. The conversation became […]

"Christ on the Cross" (detail) by Velazquez"Christ on the Cross" (detail) by Velazquez

God is Asking Something Heroic of Us

“The disciple of Christ consents to ‘live in the truth,’ that is, in the simplicity of a life in conformity with the Lord’s example, abiding in his truth. ‘If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not live according to the truth.”— CCC, 2470 I first interacted with Father Roger Landry […]

Photograph © by Andy CoanPhotograph © by Andy Coan

Six Ways to Overcome Catholic Boredom

On a recent Saturday morning my 13-year-old son said: “Dad, I’m bored. What are we going to do for fun today?” Knowing my youngest son well, I translated this to mean that he was looking for something new and exciting and I was supposed to provide it. This all too frequent discussion with my children has been the cause of […]

ConfessionalsConfessionals

On Heavy Burdens and Negative Patterns

I have been thinking a great deal about my recent experience at Reconciliation. I felt an intense and unexplainable urge to go and confess my sins when I woke up that morning. I try to go every six weeks or so, but this was no routine visit to the priest for me. I needed to unburden myself of the numerous […]

Praying the RosaryPraying the Rosary

Five Ways to Show Catholic Courage at Work

Do we ever stop to consider how many times a day our thinking and actions about our Catholic faith are influenced by a misguided concern for what others think of us? During the day, how many times have we missed opportunities to stand up for Christ or share our faith?  Is it the conversation we avoid with a troubled co-worker?  […]

"Christ the Consolator" (detail) by Carl Bloch"Christ the Consolator" (detail) by Carl Bloch

Eliminating Obstacles in 2015 (and Beyond)

As I considered what to write for this New Year’s Day post, I reflected on years of well-intended resolutions to lose weight, go to daily Mass, pick up a new hobby, play more tennis, etc. which ended in failure as my desires clashed with the reality of my busy schedule and stubborn resistance to change. I like goals, but I […]

"Adoration of the Shepherds" (detail) by Gerard van Honthorst"Adoration of the Shepherds" (detail) by Gerard van Honthorst

Keeping the Memory of Christmas and Resisting the Siren Call of Our Culture

Joy to the world, the Lord is come!  Let earth receive her King!  Merry Christmas!  It is a wonderful day as we celebrate our Savior’s birth with friends and loved ones. It is also an appropriate day to focus on what is most important and reject the siren call of our culture. I have enjoyed this Advent season, perhaps more […]