Baptism

Why Should I Confess My Sins To A Priest?

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

Have you ever been asked why you confess your sins to a priest? Have you ever wondered why you should confess your sins to a priest? 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 […]

Daily Bible Verse — Acts 2:37-39

Photography © by Andy Coan

Encountering the Word — Your Daily Bible Verse “Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, ‘Brethren, what shall we do?’ And Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you […]

Suffering Transfigured

"The Transfiguration (detail)" by Raphael

The love in which God embraces each of us is one of the great truths revealed to us throughout salvation history, but especially through and in Jesus Christ. To come to a better and deeper understanding of this love, we are continually invited by God into a deeper communion of prayer with Him… to come to know Him as He […]

Unworthy for the Mission

This Sunday, the Mass readings revolve around the theme of being called and sent. God calls Isaiah in the first reading, Paul in the second, and Peter in the Gospel. As I reread the readings, both fairly familiar stories, I was struck by a detail: all were unworthy for the mission, and all recognized their unworthiness. Discipleship is a buzz […]

Going to Jesus Through Mary at Cana

"The Marriage at Cana" by Gaetano Gandolfi [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

There have been many famous weddings in history, but I would argue that none more so than the Wedding Feast at Cana. This vignette in the life of Jesus is found in John’s Gospel and is traditionally held to record his first miracle – what John refers to as “the beginning of his signs.” We can better understand the importance […]

Sign of Transformation

Photography © by Andy Coan

Everyone knows the story of the first of the Lord’s “signs” — how Jesus changed water into wine at the wedding feast of Cana at the request of Mary, his mother. But there is more to the story than at first meets the eye. The Mass readings for the Second Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C) — Isaiah 62:1-5; Psalms 96:1-2, […]

Baptize the baby

A few things in the last week prompted further thoughts about baptism. In addition to the feast this past Sunday, I also recorded an episode for my weekly series “3 Minute Theology,” on the theological theory of limbo. I receive a lot of questions about limbo. This probably can be attributed to the fact that people think it was a […]

Making All Things New

"Baptism of Christ" (detail) by Perugino

The Feast of the Baptism of the Lord Most of us have at times felt that things were going so badly that we just wished we could start all over! A second chance! Or maybe your life is not going that well and you realize that you are just not the person you should be. I would bet that most […]

Baptism of the Lord and Mission

Photography © by Andy Coan

The Feast of the Baptism of the Lord Jesus Christ in the Jordan closes the Christmas Season. This reflection on the scripture readings for the feast also provide us insight into the sacraments of baptism and Confirmation and give us food for meditation as we say the first luminous mystery of the rosary. The Mass readings for the Feast of […]

Expectations & Fulfillment

"Baptism of Christ" (detail) by Perugino

This coming Sunday is the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord. In the readings for Mass, an option for the first reading is from Isaiah 40. The passage is ripe with imagery that perhaps sounds a little more like our Advent readings. In fact, this same reading is the reading for the second Sunday of Advent in Year B […]