To Listen to the Voice of God

St. Catherine of Siena, by Baldassare Franceschini (17th century).

We all have a desire to be listened to and taken seriously. There is nothing more frustrating than not being listened to, when someone does not either look at us when we talk to him, or let us finish our sentences. It leaves us feeling … [Read more...]

Why Do Priests Need Philosophy?

Schall photos 12-22-14

When he (Aquinas) was not sitting, reading a book, he walked round and round the cloister, and walked fast and even furiously, a very characteristic action of men who fight their battles in the mind. (G. K. Chesterton, St. Thomas Aquinas.) … [Read more...]

A Holy Priesthood for a Holy People

Richard photos 12-19-14

A groaning in the heart, of one seeking and waiting for God, is appropriate for Advent. A thirsting in the heart for his living water, in this world of dryness, is proper. In this waiting for the holy season of The Incarnation, however, a … [Read more...]

Sacrifice, Substitution, and Suffering

The Temptation in the Wilderness, by Briton Riviere (1898).

Sacrifice is troublesome for us fallen humans. It is not only the inconvenience or effort that troubles us so much, because we are sometimes willing to be inconvenienced or troubled for good reason; that is, a reason that serves our own … [Read more...]

Parables of the Generous One

The Good Samaritan, by Harold Copping (1907).

Our faith-conviction that God is the primordial Source and Resource for all creation and human life inspires our gratitude for all as gift, and our boundless hope that the best is yet to come. The abundance of God is the ultimate Source and … [Read more...]

The “Rhetoric” of Relativism

Brunelle photos 12-21-14

Relativism: (1) the wholesale philosophical rejection of the existence of any objective, absolute, or universal truths whatsoever (specifically referred to as cognitive/epistemological relativism or radical skepticism); or (2) the … [Read more...]

The Holy Spirit and the Contemporary Reform of the Catholic Church

Tangorra photos 12-7-14

Status Quaestionis Ecclesia semper reformanda est (The Church is always to be reformed). This phrase originated in the Nadere Reformatiae of the Dutch Reform during the 1600s, and first appeared in the 1674 work, Beschouwinge van Zion … [Read more...]

Guadalupe and God’s Word

Forte photos 12-12-14

When Miguel Sánchez published Imagen de la Virgen María in 1648, he did more than document the first apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the New World. Scholars agree that his account became a lens through which clergy and faithful … [Read more...]

A Silence about Mary

Kesstermeir photos 12-8-14

Mary is very central to the Gospel’s infancy narratives, but after Cana she almost disappears: we see her in the “Who are my mother and my brothers and my sisters?” passage, at the foot of the cross, and as being present at the … [Read more...]

The Nativity of Christ

Schall photos 12-5-14

In those days, Caesar Augustus published a decree ordering a census of the whole world. This first took place when Quirinius was the governor of Syria. Everyone went to register, each to his own town. And so Joseph went from his own town of … [Read more...]

Apokatastasis: On the Salvation of a Punk Rock Princess

Summerson photos 12-10-14

“Jesus died for somebody’s sins, but not mine” are the famous opening words sung by the godmother of punk rock, Patti Smith, on her debut album, Horses. On Wednesday, April 11, 2013, the same Patti Smith—a self-proclaimed … [Read more...]

Saved from a Deacon’s Nightmare

Detail from Jesus Rejected in the Synagogue, by James Tissot (1894).

A Nightmare Not long ago, I experienced a deacon’s nightmare. I was serving the 7:30 AM Mass on Sunday morning, and just as the lector stood up to do the first reading, the presider turned to me and said, “You are preaching this … [Read more...]

An Advent Reflection: Redemptor Hominis, Redeemer of Man

Detail of the fresco Descent of Christ into Limbo, by Agnolo Bronzino (1552).

Introduction The encyclical, Redemptor Hominis, has a specific place in the ministry of Pope St. John Paul II. It was proclaimed the first Sunday of Lent, 1979, the first encyclical of the new pontificate, hence the link to Advent—it … [Read more...]

A Pastoral Society

Trahan photos 11-27-14

Introduction In the Catholic intellectual community, there is a growing call for the renewal of Christian culture as a solution to the impoverishment of 21st century society. This intellectual movement has two momentums: on the one hand, … [Read more...]

Yes, We Can Know Truth Today

Conner photos 11-24-14

How astonishing it is to be a human person! Like vegetables, it is wonderful enough to be able to assimilate inanimate minerals and grow, as well as to reproduce our own kind. Like our dear pets, it is amazing that we have senses to know … [Read more...]

NeverWinter Astral Diamonds