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Saint Peter

The Mormon Fallacy

It was a beautiful spring day in Dublin Ireland. I was finished with my work meeting and decided to walk through the park near my hotel.  The park was crowded with people, sitting on the grass, playing catch near a pond, reading books under a tree or just enjoying the rare sunshine in this area of the world where it […]

Mission Dolores Altar (San Francisco) Photograph © by Andy Coan

Silence and the Meaning of the Mass

Robert Cardinal Sarah’s recent book The Power of Silence: Against the Dictatorship of Noise explores a number of themes both theological and spiritual, all centering around the unhappy role that noise has come to play in our culture and more specifically in the Church. His observations are most trenchant in regard to the liturgy, which should come as no great […]

"The Exhortation to the Apostles" (detail) by James Tissot

Courage in Dark Days

Be of Good Courage in these Dark Days Being situationally aware is good advice for everyone, anywhere and anytime. When this advice is given, it usually is a reminder to be aware of what is going on around you—to be ready for any danger. So, during these dark days in which we live, this is certainly good advice. But, what […]

Photography © by Andy Coan

God Revealed as Father

Reflection on the Mass readings for the Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A) — Jeremiah 20:10-13; Psalms 69:8-10, 14, 17, 33-35; Romans 5:12-15; Matthew 10:26-33. The recent celebration of Father’s Day invites us to ask a very important question—what does it mean to call God “Father?” Most of the great religions of the world believe in one God and teach […]

"St. John the Baptist Preaching in the Wilderness" (detail) by Anton Raphael Mengs

The Nativity of John the Baptist

Today, Saturday, June 24, 2017 is the Solemnity of the Birthday of St. John the Baptist. On December 25 we celebrate the big one—the birthday of Jesus, the Word of God made flesh.  The Church actually does not celebrate the birthday of the saints, except that of Jesus’ mother.  Generally, their special day in the calendar is the date of their […]

"Sacred Heart of Jesus" (detail) by Chambers

12 Promises from the Sacred Heart of Jesus

As a small child, Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque, 1647-1690, preferred prayer and contemplation over childish play, owing perhaps to the extraordinary virtue of her parents. However, she had heavy burdens from her earliest years. She lost her father to pneumonia when she was only eight years old. After her father died she was sent to the Urbanist sisters where the […]

"Sacred Heart of Jesus" (detail) by Chambers

Devotion to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

One can discover a wide and deep variety of devotions and spiritualities in the Catholic faith. Devotion to the Sacred Heart is one of the most visible and important. Very few people whom I know would be unfamiliar with at least the title Sacred Heart. Many parishes and Catholic institutions are named in honor of and dedicated to the Sacred Heart. […]

Ungrudging Hospitality

A few weeks ago, a friend reached out to me because she and her mother were looking for a place to stay while in my city for a week-long training. I offered to host them, since I had the space to offer and I was happy to have the chance to catch up. As I was preparing their bedroom, making […]

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 […]

Four Simple Tools to Help Navigate Your Way From Sin to Sanctity

So, you’ve got a sin problem too?  It’s not uncommon.  In fact, it has plagued every living human since the first living humans.  It’s called Original Sin.  It is part of the human condition.  Darn it. At first we just had to live with it, while God prepare us for the solution.  Even His favorite humans, the Hebrews, were not […]