Archives for March 2009

Humanae Vitae at Forty

Humanae Vitae not only contains the truth about the right ordering of the marital act but it has much to teach us about the right ordering of society.

Moral issues are always being influenced by cultural patterns. And the Church’s official teaching is always being understood through cultural filters. Contraception and Humanae Vitae are no exceptions to these two general maxims. In this a … [Read more...]

Pastors and Stability of Office

The canonical provision for stability has been set aside in favor of the frequent changing of pastors as a positive good in itself.

A common complaint heard from pastors and laity alike these days has to do with the frequent transfer of pastors from parish to parish.[1. Church petitions Vatican to keep priest,” Eileen E. Flynn, The Austin American Statesman, July 30, 2 … [Read more...]

The Meaning of Dogma

Catholicism has always taken dogmatic statements seriously because it realizes that the failure to state the truth properly often leads to error.

“If the average man is going to be interested in Christ at all, it is the dogma that will provide the interest. The trouble is that, in nine cases out of ten, he has never been offered the dogma.” — Dorothy Sayers, “Creed or Chaos?” [1. Dor … [Read more...]

Curran’s Attack on John Paul II Rebutted

Dr. May shows how utterly false are four major criticisms Charles Curran levels against the moral thought of John Paul II.

Shortly prior to Pope John Paul II’s death on April 2, 2005 Georgetown University Press published Charles E. Curran’s book entitled The Moral Theology of Pope John Paul II. [1. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 2005, xii+262 pag … [Read more...]

NFP: A Defense and an Explanation

What are the conditions according to which one may use NFP without offending Almighty God?

When is it licit for a married couple to use natural family planning (NFP)? What are the conditions according to which we may use this method without offending Almighty God? This will be my subject in this article both with reference to … [Read more...]

Is Christianity a Comfortable Religion?

Right thinking about the Incarnation seems to be the single most important issue behind our contemporary turmoil.

“Make sure that no one traps you and deprives you of your freedom by some second-hand philosophy based on the principles of this world instead of on Christ.” —Colossians, 2, 8. “Jesus’ mission concerns all humanity. Therefore, the Church is … [Read more...]

Contemporary Music in Church?

The church is the domain of the sacred, not the home for an adapted, accommodated worldliness.

Do not model your behavior on the contemporary world, but let the renewing of your minds transform you, so that you may discern for yourselves what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and mature. (Romans 12:2)[1. As rendered in t … [Read more...]

The Meaning of Christian Joy

JOY: THE SPIRIT’S GIGANTIC SECRET BEHIND THE CHURCH’S SURVIVAL By Father John T. Catoir (Alba House, Society of St. Paul, 2187 Victory Boulevard, Staten Island, N.Y.10314, 2006; 1-800-343-2522), 190 pp. PB. $14.95.

This is a simple but substantive book on the full meaning and rich sources of Christian joy, “the gigantic secret” that G. K. Chesterton discovered as the essence of Christianity. It recovers an aspect of the Church’s teaching that church fa … [Read more...]

New Help for Canonists

EXEGETICAL COMMENTARY ON THE CODE OF CANON LAW: Prepared under the Faculty of Canon Law, University of Navarre. English edition edited by Ernest Caparros (Wilson & Lafleur / Midwest Theological Forum, 2004). Five volumes bound as eight, approximately 9,000 pages. List price US $1,200.00. Purchase Online.

More than twenty years have passed since the promulgation of the 1983 Code, hardly more than the blink of an eye in terms of Church history but an entire generation in terms of human lives, especially in terms of their education. Throughout … [Read more...]

The Year of St. Paul

Editorial, March 2009

The greatest missionary in the history of the Church was the convert Saul of Tarsus who, by the grace of God, was changed from a persecutor of Jesus and his Church to the Apostle to the Gentiles. He was born of Jewish parents in Tarsus, … [Read more...]

First Millennium Petrine ministry

The teachings of the Fathers show that the Church has always affirmed the primacy and supremacy of the bishop of Rome.

As I followed on television the pastoral visit of Pope Benedict XVI to the United States in April 2008, I was reminded of an observation made by a friend of mine during our vacation together the previous Christmas. My friend, marveling at … [Read more...]