Category: Catechesis

Sympathy for the Devil (None so Much for Job)
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Sympathy for the Devil (None so Much for Job)

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SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL? (BUT NONE SO MUCH AS FOR JOB) Once upon a time the devil sought an audience with the Lord, which the Lord granted for he knew the devil to be a man of wealth and taste—a taste for blood. A bit of a wild child but God put up with him […]

Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, The Joy of the Gospel
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Front Row With Francis: What Makes a Good Father

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On February 04, 2015, Pope Francis continued his catechesis on the family, reflecting on the dignity and role of fathers. Last week he spoke of the danger of “absent” fathers, reminding us of Saint Joseph who was also tempted to leave Mary, when he discovered she was pregnant. He was prevented from leaving when the […]

Preach It!
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Preach It!

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The Bible is not just for Churches and Synagogues. Portions of it are read as literature, even in secular university classrooms.  Invariably, when you look at the syllabus of such courses, you find Job. It’s not hard to see why.  Job poignantly expresses what all human beings experience at one time or another–the feeling that […]

Book Review: <i>The Power of Daily Mass</i>
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Book Review: The Power of Daily Mass

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In The Power of Daily Mass: How Frequent Participation in the Eucharist Can Transform Your Life (Ave Maria Press, 2015), popular Catholic author and speaker Bert Ghezzi shares how attending daily Mass has enriched his life. He also offers quotes from other daily communicants on the value this practice has for them. He reflects on […]

Authority over Demons
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Authority over Demons

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I’ve read many term papers in my day.  Most of them are no more than a patchwork of quotes.  That’s because college students are smart enough to know that they really can’t say much on their own authority–to make their case, they have to lean on the authority of others more learned than themselves. That’s […]

The Priest’s Sacrifice and Yours
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The Priest’s Sacrifice and Yours

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“You received Holy Communion this morning and that is well, but you must do more, make a general confession and offer your communion for the conversion of sinners.” These were the words the Queen of Heaven spoke in 1859 to a Belgian immigrant named Adele Brise in Champion, Wisconsin. In 1917 the children in Fatima […]

Reflections for Sunday, February 1, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, February 1, 2015

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion Mass Readings: 1st Reading: Deuteronomy 18:15-20 2nd Reading: 1 Corinthians 7:32-35 Responsorial: Psalm 95:1-2,6-9 Gospel: Mark 1:21-28 Overcoming the Temptations of the Evil One He commands even the unclean spirits and they obey him. (Mark 1:27) So many people—especially those living in the West—have dismissed the existence […]

The Call of the First Disciples
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The Call of the First Disciples

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Saint Paul wrote two letters to the church at Corinth in ancient Greece. According to Paul “time was running out.” God was here and now and we who believe must reconsider how we think about our faith. Let nothing take precedent over our preparation for the kingdom of God. Paul describes two forms of time: […]

Detachment from the World
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Detachment from the World

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Peter and Andrew were businessmen.  So were their neighbors, James and John. They tried to wring a living out of the Sea of Galilee, and it probably took nearly all of the time and energy that they had. So it would have been easy to pass on the chance to hear some new prophet proclaim […]

Reflections for Sunday, January 25, 2014
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Reflections for Sunday, January 25, 2014

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion (Jonah 3:1-5,10; Psalm 25:4-9; 1 Corinthians 7:29-31; Mark 1:14-20) Hearing and Responding to God’s Call to Evangelize Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men. (Mark 1:17) Fishing seems relatively easy, doesn’t it? You throw a line into the water and hope a fish […]

Traditionalism, Humility, and the Prophetic Voice
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Traditionalism, Humility, and the Prophetic Voice

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Hello William, I thank you for your questions.  They are going to be tough to give a comprehensive answer to given current limitations, but I’ll try to cover what I can. We must begin with the usual caveat that I am only speaking for Kevin Tierney.  John Allen is known for saying that the number […]

Called and Consecrated
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Called and Consecrated

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When I was growing up, we were urged to pray for vocations. That meant to pray for more priests and nuns. After all, they were the ones especially called by God. The rest of us had to figure out for ourselves what to do with our lives, what school to go to, who to marry, […]

Reflections for Sunday, January 18, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, January 18, 2015

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion (1 Samuel 3:3-10,19; Psalm 40:2,4,7-10; 1 Corinthians 6:13-15,17-20; John 1:35-42) The Importance of Listening to and Saying Yes to the Lord The Lord was with him, not permitting any word of his to be without effect. (1 Samuel 3:19) Learning how to listen to the voice of […]

Blessed Mother Knows Best
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Blessed Mother Knows Best

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Passing on the faith at home with Marian piety During his installation at Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago last November, Archbishop Blase Cupich challenged those in attendance to pass on the faith to young people through their “authenticity of life, where words match deeds.” The message was not just for Catholic teachers and youth ministers, […]

The Then and The Now
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The Then and The Now

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St. Augustine is famously quoted as teaching that our hearts are restless until they rest in God. The word “restless” captures this truth well, although here in Texas the condition might also be described as an itch that can’t quite get scratched. However it is described the great bishop of Hippo is correct. Our hearts […]

<i>A Preachable Message: The Dynamics of Preaching NFP</i>
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A Preachable Message: The Dynamics of Preaching NFP

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When was the last time you heard a priest give a homily that mentioned Natural Family Planning? If you are like me, the answer is never. Admittedly, it isn’t necessarily a topic that I would want discussed at a Mass where younger children are present, but there are many times when it would be appropriate, […]

Reflections for Sunday, January 11, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, January 11, 2015

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion (Isaiah 42:1-4,6-7; Psalm 29:1-4, 9-10 Acts 10:34-38; Mark 1:7-11) Jesus’ Baptism and Our Baptism, Our Sharing in Jesus’ Relationship with His Father You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased. (Mark 1:11) “He wants to be the bride at every wedding, the corpse at […]

The Journey of the Magi: Baby, You're Gonna Be a Big Star Someday
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The Journey of the Magi: Baby, You’re Gonna Be a Big Star Someday

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Now the shepherds were not the only ones who visited the Holy Family after Jesus was born. Stargazers from Arabia soon arrived. They stopped off at the fortress-palace of Herod the Great because they needed directions. Men are often too proud to admit when we’re lost but the stargazers swallowed their pride and entered the […]

Reflections for Sunday, January 4, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, January 4, 2015

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion (Isaiah 60:1-6; Psalm 72:1-2,7-8,10-13; Ephesians 3:2-3,5-6; Matthew 2:1-12) The Epiphany, A Time to Offer Our Gifts to the Lord They opened their treasures and offered him gifts. (Matthew 2:11) Without a doubt, the Magi were big spenders. The gifts they gave to Jesus were about the costliest […]

The Holy Family
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The Holy Family

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The Passion of the Christ was the most intense movie I’ve ever seen. But there was a moment of comic relief, a flashback to a young Jesus in the back yard, building a new invention. It was the kind of table that is now a commonplace. But in a society where people reclined to dine, […]

The Birth of Christ and Time-Travel
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The Birth of Christ and Time-Travel

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On the Second Sunday of Advent I preached a sermon the subject of which was time, specifically on the minutiae that governs our temporal reality. Like sands in an hour glass, so are the days of our lives. Now I would like to revisit the subject of time from a different perspective—time travel. This is […]

Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, The Joy of the Gospel
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Front Row With Francis: The Domestic Church

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At his last Wednesday General Audience of this year, Pope Francis pondered the remarkable fact that Jesus chose to spend the vast majority of His time on earth leading a mundane existence in a backwoods of the vast Roman Empire: “Did this God, who came to save us, waste thirty years there, in that ill-famed […]

The Mystery of the Incarnation
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The Mystery of the Incarnation

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“Mystery,” he sneered. “That’s a good Catholic word.” My friend was a fundamentalist who had more than a bit of antipathy towards the Catholic Church, charging that it added to the simple faith of the Bible. But he didn’t read his bible very well. The word “mystery” is a Catholic word, only because it is […]

Reflections for Sunday, December 21, 2014
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Reflections for Sunday, December 21, 2014

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion (2 Samuel 7:1-5, 8-12,14,16; Psalm 89:2-5,27,29; Romans 16:25-27; Luke 1:26-38) Advent: A Time to Give Glory to God The Lord … will establish a house for you. (2 Samuel 7:11) Imagine David’s surprise when God denied his request to build a temple but promised instead to build […]

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