children

Surrogate Gods, Surrogate Parents

The Virtual Family: Connected or Disconnected?

It is a gross understatement to say that we live in trying times.  The Church and religious liberty are under attack around the world, our country is divided, atheists are one of the fastest growing groups in America and our families are under siege.  My intent is not to depress you, but focus your attention on today’s realities.  In times […]

Don’t Worry—Trust God

Dear Sister, I worry a lot. I worry about myself and my family. People sometimes tell me that I worry far too much.  I can’t help it. As a child, I was trained to be responsible and was held accountable by my parents. Now that I am married, have a husband and children of my own, my worrying has increased […]

Learning to Accept God’s Will

Man at Prayer

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 […]

Appreciating Fatherhood

This weekend we celebrate Father’s Day throughout the United States. It’s a relatively recent feast, made a permanent national holiday on the third Sunday of June only in 1972 when it was signed into law by President Nixon. President Lyndon Johnson had given the first presidential proclamation honoring fathers only six years prior. Mother’s Day, by contrast, was proclaimed by […]

Seven Essential Lessons for Dads

"The Holy Family (detail)" by Murillo

Our state in life is where we live out our vocation; it is the path by which we journey to Heaven. God has called each of us by name to Himself. In baptism we each received a share in the divine mission and a responsibility to be faithful to that mission. When a man and a woman answer God’s call to […]

Four Critical Principles for Catholic Fathers

St. Joseph and the Christ-Child, Belmont Abbey

“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 […]

Receiving the Food that Makes Martyrs

"Christ on the Cross" (detail) by Velazquez

We are now at the time of year in which, in many parts of the country and globe, young people are receiving their first Holy Communion. As pastors and catechists are well aware, the spiritual significance of this event is sometimes obscured by an excessive focus on suits and dresses, parties and photos. This year, however, the world has received […]

Protecting Our Humanity and the Vulnerable

"Creation of Adam" (detail) by Michelangelo

Because of the times we are living in, Pope Francis has spoken out repeatedly about the dangers of “gender ideology,” a modern form of gnosticism that not only undermines our basic understanding of anthropology but also of reality. He has made a distinction between the welcome, support, accompaniment, and loving pastoral care that we must offer to those who say […]

Daily Quote — Saint John Paul II

Pope St. John Paul II

On Human Dignity… “Much remains to be done to support those whose lives are wounded and to restore hope to those who are afraid of life. Courage is needed to resist pressures and false slogans, to proclaim the supreme dignity of all life, and to demand that society itself give it its protection. A distinguished American, Thomas Jefferson, once stated: […]

Spiritual Tips for Toddlers

Parenting toddlers and little ones can be daunting! There are so many things you are advised to keep in mind as you guide your growing child. Everything from self-esteem, discipline, manners, etc. For a Christian parent, however, there is another dimension that needs to be carefully developed: spiritual growth. And this depends directly upon your own personal prayer life and […]