Faith

The Friends of the Paralytic

"The Palsied Man Let Down Through the Roof" (detail) by James Tissot [Public domain]

“They knew they couldn’t heal their friend themselves. But they could bring him to Jesus.” As we jump into Ordinary Time this week, the Gospel readings at daily Mass don’t lose any time moving through the extraordinary works of Jesus’ public ministry. This is because Ordinary Time always begins with Mark’s Gospel, and Mark doesn’t lose any time with anything. […]

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 […]

Led by the Spirit

chair-peter-holy-spiritDetail of Chair of St. Peter Dnalor 01, Rom, Vatikan, Petersdom, Cathedra Petri (Bernini) 4, Detail, CC BY-SA 3.0

Just what is it that leads us through this life? This is a question we should ask ourselves and wrestle with from time to time. However, we should do this only after we have wrestled with the first and more immediate question: Where we are going in this life? Or perhaps more accurately, what is life really all about? Some […]

Celebrate your Baptism

"The Baptism" (detail) by Pietro Longhi [Public domain]

“See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God. Yet so we are.” (1 John 3:1) Almost every year on the upcoming feast of the Baptism of the Lord, Pope Francis encourages Christians to celebrate the day of their baptism. “The celebration of Jesus’ baptism invites every Christian to remember his […]

Time for Some Straight Talk

"The Lamb of God, John the Baptist and Andrew" (detail) by Ottavio Vannini (1585-c. 1643) [Public domain]

If you appreciate straight talk, the Gospel of John has a great way of getting to the point. “‘It is the spirit that gives life, the flesh is of no avail; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.But there are some of you that do not believe.’ For Jesus knew from the first who those […]

The Magi and the gifts of …. Lent?

"Adoration of the Magi" (detail) by Sébastien Bourdon [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

What shall we give him?  I have always been intrigued by the magi.  Their story forms the majority of Matthew’s account of the birth of Jesus Christ, and yet there remain so many questions about these mysterious figures. Where did they come from? How did they know to follow the star? What did they think when they found the Holy […]

Eliminating Obstacles Between Christ and Us in 2020

"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 2020, 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 […]

Do Not Go Gentle…

Photography by Thoom | Shutterstock

There is an interesting irony to the Christmas season. The irony is that while so many people experience great joy during Christmas, many others, perhaps an equal number, experience depression. This is true for many reasons, not the least of which is that for many people, this season is merely a time of unfulfilled expectations.   Those expectations may stem from something […]

Joy

Photography by Bannafarsai_Stock | Shutterstock

Joy is more than happiness, just as happiness is more than pleasure. Pleasure is in the body. Happiness is in the mind and feelings. Joy is deep in the heart, the spirit, the center of the self. The way to pleasure is power and prudence. The way to happiness is moral goodness. The way to joy is sanctity, loving God […]

St. John and the Incarnation

"Adoration of the Shepherds" (detail) by Antonio Balestra [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

“God became man and became friends with people like us.” It’s fitting that a few days after we celebrate God becoming man, we celebrate the feast of one of his best friends. John the apostle, evangelist, guardian of the Blessed Mother, and beloved disciple was also an apologist for the mystery we celebrate during this season: the Incarnation. One of […]