Practicing Acceptance and Seeing Burdens as Blessings

Some years ago a priest shared some guidance with my wife and me that has been the ongoing 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. […]

Lessons from Emmaus Road for the Anxious and Discouraged

"Supper at Emmaus" (detail) by Caravaggio

We are all 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.  As […]

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 […]

Why Do We Follow a Secular Compass?

I don’t know about you, but I rarely get through the day without feeling beaten up a little by the demands and pervasive negative influence of the world. It is difficult to find peace and block out the noise. I am challenged to avoid committing the same venial sins over and over each day. In my weakness, I tend to […]

Powerful Lessons from St. Joseph

St. Joseph and the Christ-Child, Belmont Abbey

As the father of a 23-year-old son with high-functioning autism, I am sometimes challenged to give my oldest child the focus and patience he needs from me.  I frequently feel inadequate when I advise and guide my 20-year-old son through the minefields of today’s culture.  My loving wife should expect my best efforts as a husband, yet I often feel […]

The Clarity of Simon Peter’s Example

Sea of Galilee

And when he had ceased speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch” (Luke 5:4). Not long ago, one of our priests gave an excellent homily based on chapter five of Luke’s Gospel and the Call of Simon the Fisherman (before he became St. Peter). Although Father Steve never described […]

Fighting Our Own Indifference

"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 […]

Where are the “Regular” Catholic Heroes?

Man at Prayer

Feeling let down by politicians and public figures who say they are Catholic, but their words and actions are often contrary to the teachings of the Church? Do we seek good examples for ourselves, our children or our grandchildren to emulate because we hope they will demonstrate in word and deed what it means to be authentically Catholic?  Perhaps we […]

Eliminating Obstacles Between Christ and Us in 2021

"Christ the Consolator" (detail) by Carl Heinrich Bloch (1834-1890) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

As I considered what to write for this post in the first week of 2021, I reflected on years of well-intended resolutions to lose weight, go to daily Mass, pick up a new hobby, play more tennis, etc. which ended in failure as my desires clashed with the reality of my busy schedule and stubborn resistance to change. I like […]

Keeping the Memory of Christmas and Resisting the Siren Call of Our Culture

"Adoration of the Shepherds" (detail) by Gerard van Honthorst [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Joy to the world, the Lord is come!  Let earth receive her King!  Merry Christmas!  It is a wonderful time as we celebrate our Savior’s birth with friends and loved ones. It is also an appropriate time to focus on what is most important and reject the siren call of our culture. I enjoyed this past Advent season, perhaps more […]