Saints

Daily Catholic Quote — St. Josemaría Escrivá

St. Josemaría Escrivá (detail) Oficina de Información de la Prelatura del Opus Dei en España [CC BY-SA]

A Daily Quote to Inspire Your Catholic Faith “Christian optimism is not a sugary optimism; nor is it a mere human confidence that everything will turn out all right. “It is an optimism that sinks its roots in an awareness of our freedom, and in the sure knowledge of the power of grace. It is an optimism which leads us […]

Why does my faith walk seem so lonely?

Dear Sister, Sometimes the living of my Catholic faith is a lonely walk for me. Why is that?  Am I doing anything wrong?  Sometimes I think, “Am I the only one feeling this way?” I’ve never had theology classes and would appreciate anything you could send my way to help me understand why I feel so alone sometimes in my […]

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 […]

Daily Catholic Quote — St. Ephrem

"The Crowning of the Virgin by the Trinity" (detail) by Velázquez

A Daily Quote to Inspire Your Catholic Faith “Through Eve, the beautiful and desirable glory of men was extinguished; but it has revived through Mary.” (St. Ephrem the Syrian, Deacon and Doctor of the Church) The Memorial of the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary is August 22. The Optional Memorial of St. Ephrem, Deacon and Doctor of the Church […]

Overcome by Praise

Mission Dolores Altar (San Francisco) Photograph © by Andy Coan —Christopher West

Have you ever been in awe of how St. Paul and the early Christians could be singing songs of praise from prison (Acts 16:5)? Or how Daniel, after hearing that he was not to worship His God on pain of death, went to his home and facing Jerusalem, “…prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before” […]

The Holy Bible and Sacred Tradition Comprise the Word of God

"St. Jerome Writing" (detail) by Caravaggio

“Deacon Mike, why do we believe that it belongs to the Church to interpret the bible? Can’t we just read the bible for ourselves? The guys I do bible study with say that we (Catholics) add things that are not there.” A young man who participates in a “non-denominational” bible study asked me this question. This question comes up from time to […]

The Miracle of the Loaves

Photography © by Andy Coan

One of the most famous miracles of Jesus is the only one recorded in all four gospels–the multiplication of the loaves and fishes. LOAVES & FISH – SHARING? I once heard a homily that claimed what really happened is that bystanders took out food they were hiding under their cloaks and shared it. Jesus’ preaching inspired the melting of selfishness, […]

Parables About the Kingdom

Michelangelo's "Last Judgment" on the Altar Wall in the Sistine Chapel Photography by Mark Armstrong

Two Sundays ago, we began working our way through the thirteenth chapter of Matthew’s Gospel and the seven parables that begin with the Parable of the Sower and end with the Parable of the Net. Each of these parables has a particular theme and lesson. The first four parables teach about the proclamation of the Gospel, the difficulties confronting its reception, and its […]

Flower of Carmel

"The Madonna of Carmel and the Souls of the Purgatory" (detail) by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo

Every year on July 16, Carmelites throughout the world celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, patroness of the Carmelite Order.  If you want to know how we feel about Mary, our Mother, spend a few minutes reflecting on one of the most beautiful prayers ever written, the Flos Carmeli. Most of us pray—before meals, morning and/or night prayers, […]