O Joyful Catholics, Where Are You?

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

I believe one of the greatest obstacles to evangelization and sharing our faith with others today is that many of us have forgotten how to be joyful. I know when the stresses of the world weigh me down, I struggle to maintain a joyful attitude in the presence of others. We are often so busy with our hectic schedules and […]

Four Critical Principles for Catholic Fathers

St. Joseph and the Christ-Child, Belmont Abbey

“It is easier for a father to have children than for children to have a real father.” (Pope St. John XXIII) I often feel completely lost and befuddled as a Catholic father in today’s world. How do I set the right example? How do I help my sons grow up with a strong Catholic faith? How do I prepare them […]

Choosing to Live Gratefully

“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 […]

Extraordinary Faith from Ordinary Catholics

Photography by John Neff | Shutterstock

“In the doctrine of Christ there is no invitation to mediocrity, but a clear call to Heaven, to love and to cheerful sacrifice.” (Fr. Francis Fernandez, In Conversation with God) Feeling let down by politicians and public figures who say they are Catholic, but whose words and actions are often contrary to the teachings of the Church? Do we seek good […]

The Heavy Burdens We Carry

Confessionals

I have been thinking a great deal about my experience at Reconciliation this past Saturday. I felt an intense and unexplainable urge to go and confess my sins when I woke up that morning after having been deprived of this Sacrament during the coronavirus pandemic. I try to go every six weeks or so, but this was no routine visit […]

What are the Obstacles Between Catholic Men and Christ?

“As long as we live in the world our life is a constant struggle between love for Christ or giving into lukewarmness, to our passions, or to comfort seeking, which destroys love. Faithfulness to Christ is forged each day by struggling against what separates us from him, and by an effort to make progress in virtue. Then they will be […]

Powerful Lessons from St. Joseph

St. Joseph and the Christ-Child, Belmont Abbey

As the father of a 22-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 19-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 […]

Are You Too Busy for God?

For years I have heard people say they don’t have enough time to pray, get involved in parish ministry, attend daily Mass, take part in Eucharistic adoration, be involved in children’s activities, serve in the community, etc. I believe our misconception about time is one of the biggest obstacles, along with living in “silos” and failing to surrender to Christ, to […]

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 […]