Archives for March 2012

The 60th Anniversary of F.X. Durwell’s classic, THE RESURRECTION: A BIBLICAL STUDY

Durwell, F.X., C.S.S.R. (1960).  The Resurrection:  A Biblical Study.  NY:  Sheed and Ward.  pp. 359. This is the 60th Anniversary of F.X. Durwell’s classic, The Resurrection: A Biblical Study, and the 50th year since its English Edition … [Read more...]

Being an American Catholic Today: The Historical (and Current) Challenge

It is important to understand how the American Catholic experience is unique in the history of the Church. Rally for Religious Freedom March 23, 2012, Seattle Is it possible for one to be both an American, and Catholic, in the 21st … [Read more...]

Papal Infallibility: A Symbolic, Yet Problematic, Term

Although papal infallibility is commonly found in popular conversation, how well the term is understood is another matter. As Danny Garland, Jr., pointed out in his recent article on “The Development of the Dogma of Papal I … [Read more...]

The Sapiential Character of Sacramental Reconciliation

Wisdom is not merely a final product of confession, but is diffused throughout the whole of sacramental reconciliation. Return of the Prodigal Son by Murillo Christ gave to his apostles a divine authority to bind and loose for the … [Read more...]

Challenging Islam

Today, we face a political/religious challenge, Islam, in which, avoiding hard truths, exposes us to a real and present danger. I am not disposed toward the soothingly facile idea embodied in the popular expression, “Let’s agree to disa … [Read more...]

Questions Answered: Does Hell Exist? And, Civil Law vs. Moral Law

Question: I heard that, recently, some Christian theologians are denying the existence of hell? Can you tell me if we must believe in hell? Answer: The existence of hell is de fide from the Athanasian Creed, which teaches: “But those who h … [Read more...]

Conscience Matters

With Health and Human Services (HHS) implementing its mandate, forcing employee insurance to cover contraceptives, abortion-inducing drugs, and sterilization, it is time to revisit the "right of conscience." This is the best of times. M … [Read more...]

Mary, Mother of Mercy. Christ the Power of Merciful Love

Merciful love is a strong love, is capable of withstanding the cross, both difficulties and challenges. Where does the title, “Mary, Mother of Mercy,” come from? We have many popular prayers that speak of Mary as Mother of Mercy. For exam … [Read more...]

A Prayerful Meditation on St. Joseph

Every March, we recall the heroic virtues of the holy husband of the Virgin Mary, St. Joseph. Coming to appreciate St. Joseph’s mystery If anyone had a special insight into the parable of the hidden treasure, it was unquestionably St. J … [Read more...]

Transcendence and the Meaning of Politics

Contemplation provides the capacity to understand the meaning and limits of politics. In a recent phone conversation, I had the pleasure of reconnecting with an old friend that I had not spoken with in almost two years. He eventually got … [Read more...]

“Put on the Garments of Christ”: Cyril of Jerusalem and the Origins of Lent

If Cyril of Jerusalem were among us today, he might merely challenge us to take our Lenten devotions a little deeper. In the Spring of 347, Cyril of Jerusalem delivered a series of teachings to the catechumens of Jerusalem.  In the … [Read more...]

Homilies for April 2012

For Sunday Liturgies and Feasts For Easter Season 2012 Costly Discipleship Purpose: To enter deeply into this final week of Christ's passion, death, and resurrection by presenting Christ's life, not as something of the distant past, … [Read more...]

A Review of Cullen Murphy’s “God’s Jury”

GOD’S JURY: The Inquisition and the Making of the Modern World. By Cullen Murphy (Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012) 310 PP. ISBN 978-0-618-09156-0. Mr. Cullen Murphy never claims to be an historian. His edited c … [Read more...]

Cremation: Recalling Some Basic Catholic Truths

The Church rescinded its prohibition on cremation, but does not consider burial and cremation equally valid methods. The Newark Star-Ledger reports that acceptance of cremation is growing: 40% of deaths in America (and 40% in New Jersey) … [Read more...]

After the Sex Abuse Crisis and Returning to a “Fish on Friday” Ascetism

There is a human need for discipline, which is another word for asceticism. After almost a decade (if you date the modern priest sex abuse crisis from Boston in 2002 [1.]), the … [Read more...]