suffering

"Saint Teresa of Ávila" (detail) by Peter Paul Rubens"Saint Teresa of Ávila" (detail) by Peter Paul Rubens

Daily Catholic Quote — from St. Teresa of Avila

“I was helped in having a deeper desire to undergo difficult trials, and I was left with a longing to serve our Lady since she deserved this so much.” (St. Teresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church) The Memorial of St. Teresa of Avila, Virgin and Doctor of the Church (1515-1582), is October 15. Print this entry

Photography © by Andy CoanPhotography © by Andy Coan

Encountering the Word — 1 Peter 4:12-13

A Daily Quote from Sacred Scripture “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal which comes upon you to prove you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice in so far as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.” (1 Peter 4:12-13) Print this entry

Man at PrayerMan at Prayer

On Being Grateful For My Challenges

I woke up last Tuesday not feeling very grateful.  I am not sure why, but I started my day in a “mood.”  Maybe it was the stress of having too much on my plate as I pondered my numerous family, work, ministry and writing commitments.  It could have been the large private school tuition bills which are due every month […]

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A Lesson about Suffering

  What a man who lives in his van reminded me about the suffering world around us… I drove to Walmart one day this week to pick up new goggles and bathing suits for my children’s swim team trials.  As I pulled my van into a spot, I noticed another familiar vehicle, similar to my own, parked across from me.  The […]

Father Hans Urs von BalthasarFather Hans Urs von Balthasar

Catholic Quote of the Day — from Father Hans Urs von Balthasar

“It is to the Cross that the Christian is challenged to follow his Master: no path of redemption can make a detour around it.” (Father Hans Urs von Balthasar) Father Hans Urs von Balthasar, considered one of the greatest theologians of the twentieth century, was named to become a Cardinal by Pope John Paul II, but died before the consistory took […]

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

The Problem of Suffering

I remember sitting in my Introduction to Moral Theology class as a college undergraduate and being asked, “What is the problem of suffering, and how do we respond to it?”  We were then introduced to Rabbi Harold Kushner, who wrote a book called When Bad Things Happen to Good People.  Rabbi Kushner explained that there are three basic premises we […]

"Madonna and Child" (detail) by Sassoferrato"Madonna and Child" (detail) by Sassoferrato

Tightening my grip

There are few things in life that make you desire to be a child again more than being sick. (Other than Disney World, but that’s a completely different and much nicer feeling.)  When I had the misfortunate of being waylaid by a bug earlier this week, all I could think was that I wanted my mommy. There was no one […]

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Daily Lenten Reflection—Know That God Is With You

“But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.” (Isaiah 53:5-6) We sometimes […]

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

Finding Joy in the Midst of Sorrow

“We know that all things work for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). The Paradox of the Cross 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 […]