Can There Be a Catholic History?

Some years ago, in a conversation with a non-Catholic woman of my acquaintance, I mentioned how I made my living. “I write Catholic history texts,” I told her. With head cocked and a challenge in her eyes, she asked, “Catholic history? What … [Read more...]

The Protestant Reformation: The Cause of Modern Relativism

“Today, having a clear faith based on the Creed of the Church is often labeled as fundamentalism. Whereas relativism, that is, letting oneself be ‘tossed here and there, carried about by every wind of doctrine,’ seems the only attitude that … [Read more...]

Newman: Conscience as an Ongoing Activity

St. John Henry Newman eloquently presents his idea of conscience as something actively engaged both with the realities of lived experience and with direct apprehension of a particular situation. Logic is part of one’s assessment of the s … [Read more...]

Book Reviews – November 2020

Ceremonies Explained for Servers: A Manual for Altar Servers, Acolytes, Sacristans, and Masters of Ceremonies. By Peter J. Elliott. Reviewed by Christopher Siuzdak. (skip to review) The Disabled Church: Human Difference and the Art of … [Read more...]

Questions Answered – June 2020

Absence of God? Question: Pope Emeritus Benedict published a letter last year in which he attributed the pedophilia crisis in the clergy to an absence of God. Our Church and clergy are wholly dedicated to God, right? Can you explain how … [Read more...]

Materialism’s Unnoticed Achilles’ Heel

While major arguments take place between classical theists and metaphysical materialists over central claims about whether the God exists or whether man has a spiritual and immortal soul, the most important claim of materialism, namely, … [Read more...]

The Theological Anthropology of Karol Wojtyla (Pope St. John Paul II)

Every so often, there appears in history a person who has an effect on the world, that the whole world is changed for the better as a result of their being there. A person of recent memory is Father Karol Wojtyla, who became Pope St. John … [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...]

Evolution vs. Intelligent Design

Ever since, in late 2005, U.S. District Judge John E. Jones ruled that the school district of Dover, Pennsylvania, could not mandate material about intelligent design in its science curriculum on evolution (declaring it unconstitutional to … [Read more...]

Book Reviews – June 2019

The Catholic Writer Today and Other Essays By Dana Gioia. Reviewed by Ken Colombini. (skip to review) Raymond E. Brown and the Catholic Biblical Renewal By Fr. Donald E. Senior. Reviewed by Rev. John P. Cush, STD. (skip to … [Read more...]

Virtue Signalling

How has your virtue signalling gone this week? Have you praised recycling, veganism or rolled your eyes at the mention of Donald Trump? In my area, free bicycles were left on the street for all who wanted to use them so as to reduce carbon … [Read more...]

Questions Answered – April 2019

Do Baptized Converts Need Confession First? Question: During the Easter Vigil, non-Christians are baptized, receive First Communion and are confirmed, while converts are received into full communion with the Church, meaning also and above … [Read more...]

Book Reviews – April 2019

Reflections on the Sacred Liturgy, Vol. I: Lent & Holy Week By Fr. Thomas Hoisington. Reviewed by Stephanie A. Mann. (skip to review) Off the Hook: God, Love, Dating, and Marriage in a Hookup World By Timothy P. O’Malley. Reviewed b … [Read more...]

Happiness — A Thomistic Consideration (Part II)

Continued Reflections on Summa Theologiae I-II, Q 1–5

Introduction to Part II The three pillars of Catholic social teaching, which springs from natural law and human nature, are human dignity, common good, and subsidiarity. Within societal structures with hierarchical poleis (e.g., federal, … [Read more...]

Happiness — A Thomistic Consideration (Part I)

A Reflection on Summa Theologiae I-II, Q 1–5

Introduction At some point in the life of every human person the great questions arise in their ponderings: “Where did I come from?” “Why am I here?” “Where am I going?” These questions encompass the ultimate question of our own mortality: … [Read more...]