Archives for 2019

The “Un-hefted” Vanishing Flock

When Irishman Declan Dinneny spoke, I caught every fifth word. His voice came in a wild chorus of undulated high pitches that crescendoed when he spoke of something important, like maybe a heifer who’d miscarried that morning. His farm was b … [Read more...]

Perserverance in the Face of Imperfect Ministers

Too frequently, practicing Catholics encounter family members and friends who are dismayed by the priestly and hierarchal abuse scandals. They have lost faith in the hierarchy and priests, not knowing whom they can trust. Consequently, they … [Read more...]

Questions Answered – September 2019

Love in Context of Abusive Relationships Question: Am I wrong and sinning if I do not like family members who mistreat me? Answer: This question actually has two prongs to it. The one has to do with the relationship of volitional to … [Read more...]

A Sacerdotal Summer

St. Ignatius of Loyola likened the “enemy of our human nature” to a cunning military strategist who sussed out each of our weakest defenses and thereby knew exactly where to strike. A war for souls is truly on, both on the individual as wel … [Read more...]

Letter of His Holiness Pope Francis to Priests

Letter of His Holiness Pope Francis to Priests on the 160th Anniversary of the Death of the Holy Curé of Ars, St. John Vianney To my Brother Priests Dear Brothers, A hundred and sixty years have passed since the death of the holy … [Read more...]

Priesthood and Spiritual Childhood

Spiritual pride is an occupational hazard of the priesthood, and a potentially deadly disease. Because of our current ecclesiastical environment, I think it is important to mention clergy abuse cases. Quite apart from the personal emotional … [Read more...]

Evil as Good and Good as Evil

“Woe to those who say evil is good and good is evil . . .” (Isaiah 5:20) The response of a person who has their conscience pricked will range from one of irritation to annoyance, impatience, anger, and, depending on the state of the ind … [Read more...]

The Dark Spirit in Our Institutions

Catholics, Take Heed

There is a dark spirit, a spirit of unreason, stalking the world. In earlier times we might have characterized it as a Dionysian spirit attempting to oust Apollo. This spirit urges those who listen to it to throw off the constraints of the … [Read more...]

Saint Edith Stein

Footsteps to Truth

“Whoever seeks the truth is seeking God.” – Saint Edith Stein, Teresa Benedicta of the Cross. While the general story of Edith Stein (St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross [1891–1942]) might be well known, her kind of concern for truth in all … [Read more...]

Catholicism and the Zombies of Evolution

Zombies — an undead fictional being created through the reanimation of a human corpse — are all the rage today in popular culture. Many have heard of the top-rated TV show The Walking Dead (the second most-popular TV show in the world) des … [Read more...]

Homilies for September 2019

For September 1, September 8, September 15, September 22, and September 29. 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time – Sep. 1, 2019   Readings: Sir 3:17–18, 20, 28–29 • Ps 68:4–7, 10–11 • Heb 12:18–19, 22–24a • Lk 14:1, 7–14   usccb.org/bible/rea … [Read more...]

Second Peter

The Transfiguration Is the Interpretive Key of the Second Coming

Reading Mark’s Gospel with the Faith of Saint Peter and the Church Saint Peter’s Second Epistle soars the heights of the Spirit akin to the spiritual heights of John’s proclamation of the Gospel (Jn 1:1–14). He whose gift of faith caused Ch … [Read more...]

Homilies for August 2019

For August 4, August 11, The Assumption, August 18, and August 25. 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time – August 4, 2019   Readings: Ecc 1:2; 2:21–23 • Ps 90:3–6, 12–14, 17 • Col 3:1–5, 9–11 • Lk 12:13–21    usccb.org/bible/readin … [Read more...]

Who Was Hubert Jedin?

In November, 1991, the Homiletic and Pastoral Review published a memorandum of Hubert Jedin written in 1968. But many in the English-speaking world were quite unaware of who this man was and what his contribution to the Church consisted of. … [Read more...]