The Legacy of the Vision of Pope John Paul II for Marriage and Family

Not even the bullet from the barrel of an assassin’s gun could stop Pope John Paul II from emphasizing early in his pontificate the issues of marriage and family. In just the first five years, he created six key markers in these critical a … [Read more...]

Recognizing a Link in the Hermeneutic of Continuity

A Brief Look at Blessed Pope Paul VI

The ranks of those declared blessed and saint by the Church under the guidance of the Holy Spirit constitute the great array of our brothers and sisters who have been lifted up as models of holiness and powerful intercessors. While … [Read more...]

Streamlining Annulments

This headline greeted the announcement that Pope Francis was establishing a commission to make suggestions for altering the annulment process in the Catholic Church. The word “streamlining” is, perhaps, not the Vatican’s word, but it does ca … [Read more...]

Cardinal Walter Kasper on “Artificial” Birth Control

I grant that there are some today who erroneously refer to unnatural forms of birth control as “artificial contraception,” but no one today is arguing that the evil of marital contraception is its use of an artifact.  In the online edit … [Read more...]

The Virgin Birth, Perpetual Virginity, and NFP

...we need to look back at the reign of Joseph’s direct ancestor, the great King David ... (which) will help us understand that Mary was ... the lifelong Spouse of the Holy Spirit, and that Joseph was her protector, but not her sexual p … [Read more...]

How to Help Cohabiting Couples

I would like to point out what I believe to be the via media, whereby these our brothers and sisters in Christ can both be welcomed and challenged to live the call of their baptism.   But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the … [Read more...]

‘Til Death Do Thee Part

The necessary manifestations of love, to include self-sacrifice and self-giving, and an ongoing readiness to forgive, could only continue to be present in a marriage fueled by God’s graces. By the basic principles of neurology, we know t … [Read more...]

The Side Effects of the Pill: Why the Church Has So Much to Say about Contraception

The Church pays special attention to the issue of contraception ... because so many of the modern errors in moral theology converge in this particular question of conjugal morality. There is an impression out there–in the world and even w … [Read more...]

An Essay on Natural Family Planning

 The Catholic Church has never opposed family planning, but she teaches through her Magisterium, or teaching authority, that man may not, of his own volition, separate the two meanings of the conjugal act, the unitive and the procreative, … [Read more...]

Where is Prayer for Christian Unity in Our Parishes?

Every post-conciliar Pope has emphasized, with Vatican II, that ecumenism is a necessary aspect of the Church's mission, and one involving the effort of all the faithful, clergy, and laity alike.    It was once quite common for many C … [Read more...]

Ways to Celebrate Humanae Vitae at 45—and Beyond!

This article began as a response to priests’ and deacons’ requests for a model homily on a moral means of family planning. On July 25, 2013, the Church marked the 45th anniversary of the promulgation of the encyclical Humanae Vitae. Over … [Read more...]

“Humanae Vitae” and Sacred Scripture: A Missed Opportunity

While prophetic in many ways, the most controversial encyclical of the twentieth century might have been better received had a stronger biblical argument been made in its favor. This July 2013 we commemorate the 45th anniversary of Pope … [Read more...]

Celebrating “Humanae Vitae” 45 Years Later

The one night stand may not have been born in the 60s, but it was granted acceptance and serial permanence. ... the Holy Father saw how a general lowering of overall morality would be the result of such self-centeredness. Humanae Vitae … [Read more...]

Fifty Years Later–Vatican II’s Unfinished Business

Today, 50 years after the opening of Vatican II, the misinterpretation of one of its most salient documents, Lumen Gentium, continues to drive a number of Catholics in the United States into one of two camps, the “right” or the “le … [Read more...]

Revisiting Humanae Vitae

What has been summarized as his most profound theological contribution, Theology of the Body, John Paul II labeled the entire work a “rereading of Humanae Vitae.” Two days after the publication of Humanae Vitae, Pope Paul VI remarked dur … [Read more...]