Gospel

The Crown | NETFLIX

“The Crown” and the Fundamental Values of Society

***Spoiler Alert*** The Netflix original series The Crown, which has to do with the last months of the reign of King George VI and the first years of the reign of his daughter, Queen Elizabeth II, is just the kind of program that Americans in particular seem naturally to love. It features beautiful photography of palaces, processions, and formal receptions; and […]

Pope St. John Paul II

Daily Catholic Quote — from Pope Saint John Paul II

“Moreover, ‘legitimate defence can be not only a right but a grave duty for someone responsible for another’s life, the common good of the family or of the State’ (CCC 2265). Unfortunately it happens that the need to render the aggressor incapable of causing harm sometimes involves taking his life. In this case, the fatal outcome is attributable to the aggressor […]

Photography © by Andy Coan

Turn the Other Cheek?

“Love your enemies.”  “Turn the other cheek.”  (Matthew 5:38-40).  This sounds admirable to some, but preposterous to others.  The nineteenth century philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche thought such talk promotes a society of weaklings.  Karl Marx thought these words keep the oppressed under the thumbs of the capitalists. Does Jesus want us to be doormats, suckers who allow ourselves to be taken advantage […]

Photography © by Andy Coan

Encountering the Word — Luke 3:16-17

A Daily Quote from Sacred Scripture “John answered them all, ‘I baptize you with water; but he who is mightier than I is coming, the thong of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie; he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor, and to […]

Photography © by Andy Coan

The Holiness of the Pharisees and the Occasions of Sin

Radio talk show hosts make a living on it.  Show after show, they bring before our eyes stupid, unjust and wasteful situations in order to incite outrage.  We love to listen and get ourselves all worked up.  Our indignation keeps us tuned in and raises the show’s ratings. It’s easy to focus on the outrageous things that others do.  It’s […]

Pope St. John Paul II

Daily Catholic Quote — from Pope Saint John Paul II

“To believe in Jesus is to accept what he says, even when it runs contrary to what others are saying. It means rejecting the lure of sin, however attractive it may be, in order to set out on the difficult path of the Gospel virtues.” (Pope Saint John Paul II; WYD Toronto Welcoming Ceremony; July 25, 2002) Please share on […]

Finding Fulfillment Instead of Dissatisfaction

Have you ever felt Dissatisfied and Unfulfilled? Do you ever feel as if you are missing out on something important or falling just short of some goal or purpose? Maybe you are unable to put adequate words to this feeling, you just know there is something out of balance in your life—something lacking. We sometimes experience this as a vague […]

Photography © by Andy Coan

Salt of the Earth

As a Catholic teen growing up in one of the most Catholic areas of the United States of America, I never would have considered abandoning my faith.  But neither would I ever have considered getting excited about it.  Why should I?  Nobody else in my parish seemed excited.  The teens in the parish went wild at the rock concerts we […]

“Christ at 33” (detail) by Hofmann

Why We Should Address Jesus as Thou

On the final morning of the November meeting of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, we were treated to a fine sermon by Archbishop J. Peter Sartain. The leader of the church in Seattle spent a good deal of time discussing Pier Giorgio Frassati, a saint from the early twentieth century to whom he and I both have a […]

Photography © by Andy Coan

Poverty, Sloth, and the Beatitudes

Jesus’ “Sermon on the Mount” is probably the most famous sermon of all time.  And the opening lines of that sermon are equally famous—for two thousand years they’ve been known as “the Beatitudes.” In nine short verses, Jesus lays out the character sketch of the spiritually successful person who is truly blest, fortunate, positioned to experience perfect happiness and the fullness […]