Catholic Church

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

The Paradox of the Cross—Joy in the Midst of Sorrow

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 […]

St. Michael the ArchangelSt. Michael the Archangel

Five Ways to Escape from Apathy-ville

Do you ever feel numb or helpless because of all the problems the world faces each day? One only has to watch the news or follow the events of the day online to feel completely overwhelmed. Some of the challenges facing the world include ever-increasing threats to our Catholic faith. The Church is being accosted on all sides and the culture […]

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When God is Silent — Finding spiritual peace amid the storms of life

  There are few among us who haven’t gone through suffering—mental, spiritual or emotional and wondered where God was in the turmoil. In his book, When God is Silent (Sophia Institute Press), Archbishop Martinez introduces us to the idea that Jesus is not gone—he is sleeping. Martinez expands the idea using the example of Christ asleep in the boat on Lake Tiberias. […]

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Three Good Catholic Reads

During the last week of January, when the grey had permanently settled in the sky and all I could see out my windows was a world painted the colors of a penitentiary, I received a late Christmas package: a box of review copy books. When I tore into the brown UPS package, my heart leapt with joy because although it […]

"Creation of Adam" (detail) by Michelangelo"Creation of Adam" (detail) by Michelangelo

Can Human Free Will and Divine Predestination Both be True?

If God is not love but only knowledge, then it is difficult or impossible to see how human free will and divine predestination can both be true. But if God is love, there is a way. Freedom and predestination is one of the most frequently asked questions among my students—partly because of modern man’s great concern for freedom, but also, […]

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Four Critical Principles for Catholic Fathers

“It is easier for a father to have children than for children to have a real father.” (Pope St. John XXIII) I often feel completely lost and befuddled as a Catholic father in today’s world. How do I set the right example? How do I help my sons grow up with a strong Catholic faith? How do I prepare them […]

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Precepts of the Church: Is Getting Our Foot in the Door Enough?

When we receive the sealing of the Holy Spirit at Confirmation, we are expected to know and live by the precepts of the Church. I was not as interested in the details of our faith when I was younger, so it’s possible I missed this, but I don’t remember hearing any mention of this growing up and I’d venture a […]

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Try Hard, Love Much

“She tried hard and loved much.” Not to be morbid, but I hope that can be truthfully put on my tombstone. I’m not planning on dying any time soon, but I’ve been thinking about this a lot. Over the years I have come to realize that a great way to live is to really consider my own death. What is […]

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A Special and Courageous Young Man

This past Sunday I had an opportunity to witness a very special moment at my parish. A 17-year-old young man with high-functioning autism was taking his first turn as a lector at the 7:30 am Mass. The lector role is an important one with serious responsibility, but this young man showed confidence and little fear as he read what was a […]

Pope Benedict XVI (Philip Chidell / Shutterstock.com)Pope Benedict XVI (Philip Chidell / Shutterstock.com)

Catholic Quote of the Day — from Pope-emeritus Benedict XVI

“Is it consistent to profess our beliefs in church on Sunday, and then during the week to promote business practices or medical procedures contrary to those beliefs?  … Any tendency to treat religion as a private matter must be resisted. Only when their faith permeates every aspect of their lives do Christians become truly open to the transforming power of […]