Live Life Gratefully (and You Will Never Regret It)

“When it comes to life, the critical thing is whether you take things for granted or take them with gratitude.” (G. K. Chesterton) I remember at a very young age the constant urging of my parents to always say “thank you” in response to any kindness or friendly words shared in my direction. For many years, I saw this advice […]

Lessons from Emmaus Road for the Anxious and Discouraged

"Supper at Emmaus" (detail) by Caravaggio

We are all likely familiar with the “walk to Emmaus” (Luke 24:13-35) by two of Christ’s disciples the evening of the Resurrection in Luke’s Gospel.  These two men, overcome with hopelessness and discouragement, were talking about the incredible events they had witnessed over the previous few days as they were walking to their home village of Emmaus outside of Jerusalem.  […]

When We Struggle in Our Prayer Life

Photography by John Neff | Shutterstock

One of the biggest obstacles for me in the early days of my faith journey was the lack of a prayer life. I knew I needed to pray, but I couldn’t ever remember sincerely praying about anything. I was struggling with the typical male challenge of asking for help, especially asking God for help! I rationalized this by thinking, “Who […]

Five Ways to Escape from Apathy-ville

"St. Michael the Archangel" (detail) - via Wikimedia Commons - Guido Reni [Public domain]

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 […]

Practicing Acceptance and Seeing Burdens as Blessings

A few years 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. […]

Familiaris Consortio — A Road Map for Catholic Families

When my wife and I came into the Catholic Church with our two sons in 2006, we were somewhat overwhelmed by the new life we had begun. We had not only entered into full communion with the Church Christ founded, but we clearly recognized how the expectations for our marriage and how we raised our family had changed considerably as […]

Each of These Children is a Blessing

"Suffer little children to come unto me" (detail) by Juan Urruchi

“Those whose lives are diminished or weakened deserve special respect. Sick or handicapped persons should be helped to lead lives as normal as possible.”  (CCC 2276) One of the few issues my wife and I were concerned about when we decided to join the Catholic Church in 2005 was how to include our oldest son, Alex, who has high-functioning autism. He […]

Struggling with a Restless Heart

“Thou movest us to delight in praising Thee; for Thou hast formed us for Thyself, and our hearts are restless till they find rest in Thee” (St. Augustine, Confessions). I think most writers are naturally introspective and reflective.  While praying in preparation for Lent not long ago, I prayed for strength and courage to stay focused on the path Christ […]

Simplify Your Life

Man at Prayer

Do you ever feel overwhelmed with all of the stress, responsibilities and challenges in your daily life? If I am honest with myself, the times I feel most anxious or stressed are usually caused by my lifelong tendency to overcomplicate things and an inclination towards “busyness”. I am grateful for the occasional insights I have into ways to address this […]

Dads, Do We Have Our Acts Together?

During a recent coffee meeting, a friend said, “You seem to have your act together on the fatherhood front. What’s your secret?” I was surprised and taken aback because I don’t think I have my act together at all. I don’t mean that out of false humility. I pray every day to be a better husband and father because I […]