Articles

A Sweet Remedy for Our Troubled Times

The Practice of Confession According to St. Francis De Sales

In these tumultuous times in the world and in the Church, we need more than ever to plunge into the mystery of God’s infinite mercy in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and to be inspired by the witness of the saints. What better place to s … [Read more...]

Parochial Solipsism

It is not excessive to suggest that three quarters of the life of the American pastor is consumed with administrative governance. He is, for all intents and purposes, the head of a small business. He hires and fires, reviews budgets, … [Read more...]

Alternate Views on the Root Causes of the Bishops’ Clergy Sex-Abuse Cover-Up

The Church is now in the throes of the second wave of the clergy sex-abuse crisis, which began June 20, 2018, with the exposé of former cardinal archbishop of Washington Theodore E. McCarrick’s abuse of minors and seminarians. Since then, at … [Read more...]

Father de Caussade and the Abandonment to Divine Providence

Existentially Bored Currently, we are witnessing a widespread cultural shift away from the Christian faith and an odd movement in many hearts toward various Eastern philosophies and spiritualities. As Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI once … [Read more...]

Our Lady of Good Help, the New Evangelization, and the Priest

Allow me to begin by making two confessions: I arrived at the Monastery of the Holy Name of Jesus in Denmark, Wisconsin, on Friday afternoon. I am an old friend of the nuns and try to visit them at least once a year. Two of the nuns, … [Read more...]

Inverting the Relevance of the Gospel

We hear much these days about relevance and the need to be relevant in all we do. The admonition applies to politicians, parents, teachers and especially pastors who are exhorted to make Scripture relevant to their congregations. What can … [Read more...]

God Isn’t Your College Professor

It’s the end of another semester. Final exams need to be marked and grades need to be assigned to a group of students anxious to learn “what they got” for the course. There’s so much in all of this that begs for the usual justification. T … [Read more...]

Parental and Spousal Alienation in Catholic Marriages

Marital separation and divorce in Catholic couples can result in intense levels of stress and sadness, particularly in the majority of spouses who report, while this is occurring, being happily married, committed to the marriage, and … [Read more...]

Circumcision and the Crucifixion

When God Almighty called to that man Abram, inviting him to live in a covenant with the Lord, He asked Abram to do a very curious thing to himself, to his people, and to his descendants as a sign of that covenant: to circumcise the flesh of … [Read more...]

Joseph and the Epic Battle of Humility over Pride in Spiritual Direction

From the lessons of the great protagonists of Judaism many valuable spiritual lessons are to be learned. What is at the core of the lives, and in particular the life of Joseph, is how the Lord’s plan is accomplished in cooperation with h … [Read more...]

Why You Should Have Hope for the Future of the Church

It’s officially the heart of ordination season, and our family is attending our usual round of ordination Masses. For the second year in a row, I am sewing a chasuble and stoles for some of my seminarian friends. If you have never sewn a … [Read more...]

Saint John Bosco

Spiritual Father and Friend of Penitents

In the two-thousand year history of the Catholic Church, there have been many priests who have distinguished themselves as renowned confessors. These priests are important models for confessors today to be effective ministers of mercy. This … [Read more...]

Is the Trinity a Mysterious Contradiction or a Rational Mystery?

Introduction Consider how central the Trinity is to our faith. We invoke the Trinity at the start and end of every Mass when we make the Sign of the Cross; those of us who pray the Rosary or the Divine Office will invoke the Trinity … [Read more...]

Mary and Prayer

Part III of a Marian Triptych

Mary is not a conceptual counterpoint to Christ, imagined and projected into the Gospels as a kind of semidivine goddess who was made manifest, as it were, in preparation for the coming of the Savior of mankind: a kind of “power of woman” to … [Read more...]

Analogy of Analogies

The Joyful Mysteries as Image of All Human History

A great tragedy occurred in salvation history in the so-called Enlightenment. An essential mammoth misfortune for this contrarily darkening age of the world, as well as, for that matter, the general period of thought and ideology between … [Read more...]