Articles

The Doctors of Ravenna

Peter Chrysologus and Peter Damien

The city of Ravenna boasts two Doctors of the Church named Peter: the fifth-century bishop of Ravenna, Peter Chrysologus, and the eleventh-century cardinal bishop from Ravenna, Peter Damian. The earlier Chrysologus is honored each year in … [Read more...]

Love’s Oblation

William L. Stidger told about a young lad he had baptized as a baby. The boy grew up, and when World War II began, he joined the Navy. One night his ship came into Boston, and the lad visited his former pastor and friend. During their visit … [Read more...]

Renewal and the Penitential Life

Wherever we may look for solutions to the present tension and confusion, we must realize that the solution will begin with the Eucharist, return to the Eucharist, and be formed by the Eucharist. Whatever secular processes may be deemed … [Read more...]

Integrating Pope Francis

Introduction The Pontificate of Pope Francis has been full of surprises.[1. This essay was written over the summer as an exercise in synthetic theology with a goal of better understanding and interpreting the Mind of the Magisterium. Only … [Read more...]

Marriage and the Juridical Relevance of Pastoral Language

The revised Code of Canon Law promulgated in 1983 (CIC-83) brought with it a definition of the consensual incapacity for marriage. This formula is a kind of juridical innovation given that it did not exist prior to the CIC-83 and literally … [Read more...]

“To Jesus through Mary” Is Not Enough

St. Louis de Montfort’s “To Jesus through Mary” is a common refrain amongst lovers of Mary, and rightly so. To be sure, she is the way to Jesus — Jesus does not come to us via any other way. Nor is anyone transformed into Christ but through … [Read more...]

On Prayer

Let me share some reflections by Baroness Catherine de Hueck Doherty and St. Francis de Sales, including inspirations in prayer, liberty of spirit, prayer and solitude, dryness and prayer, prayer and mystical theology, methods of prayer, … [Read more...]

The Words Men Need to Hear

A Priest Speaks to College Seminarians

Speak only the words men need to hear, the things that really help them . . . (Ephesians 4:29) Introduction The effects of language—for good or ill—first occurred to me when I was five, during the summer before kindergarten. As my broth … [Read more...]

Intensive or Extensive Religious Education?

Why do parish religious education programs so often seem to be one-size-fits-all? Whether a parish’s program is dubbed religious education, faith formation, or good ol’ CCD, parish-based catechesis of children tends to be rather coo … [Read more...]

A Case for the Sacrament of Marriage

Did God intend marriage to be a union between one man and one woman, a union that is both permanent and indissoluble? Is marriage at its very essence meant to be a covenantal bond between a man and a woman, or is it just as easily entered … [Read more...]

The Revised Catechism on the Death Penalty

A Careful Reading

With popular news articles beginning on August 2, 2018, various media agencies have been proclaiming: “Pope Francis has declared the death penalty wrong in all cases, a definitive change in church teaching . . .” (New York Times), “Pope Fran … [Read more...]

Fatima’s Third Secret—More Relevant than Ever?

For many decades, the “Third Secret of Fatima” was considered by many people to be one of the great mysteries of the Church. It was part of the message believed to be held back from the public at the request of Our Lady of Fatima, who app … [Read more...]

Reflections on the Crisis in the Church

Every weekday morning, I pray the rosary in my car on the way to work. It’s not the most ideal time to do it; I’m often distracted by traffic events and inclement weather, but I suppose it’s better than not praying it at all. On Tuesdays … [Read more...]

In Defense of the Sabbath – and the Pharisees

One of the many mysteries in the New Testament is the reaction of the Pharisees, when Jesus of Nazareth restores a man’s withered hand on the Sabbath. This was in the first year of his miracle-packed ministry in Galilee, but he had already g … [Read more...]