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Faith & Spirituality

My Journey Away from Perfectionism

February 25, AD2017 0 Comments
My Journey Away from Perfectionism

Unfortunately, my perfectionism has also caused some difficult times in my spiritual life. At age 14, I experienced a powerful conversion that led me deeper into the Catholic faith. Being that I am a perfectionist, though, this conversion also led me to experience a phenomenon known as scrupulosity. What is Scrupulosity? Scrupulosity is a very real struggle […]

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Lent: A Season of Conversion

February 24, AD2017 0 Comments
Lent: A Season of Conversion

As Lent approaches, we are reminded that this season offers us a new beginning. Pope Francis describes Lent as a “journey of spiritual renewal in the footsteps of Christ.” During this season, we are called to turn our hearts and minds back to God, to return to the Lord who offers us the gift of […]

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Pope Francis: A Corrupt Creation, Christian Hope, and Rebirth

February 23, AD2017 0 Comments
Pope Francis:  A Corrupt Creation, Christian Hope, and Rebirth

On February 22, Pope Francis continued his catechesis on the importance of  Christian hope in the face sin during his weekly General Audience. Although his reflections focused on the corruption of creation, they are not the opinions of a left-leaning environmentalist but the profound insights of a man of God. The Environment Unfortunately, many Catholics will most […]

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Making a Manly Retreat: A Catholic Among the Separated Brothers

February 23, AD2017 2 Comments
Making a Manly Retreat: A Catholic Among the Separated Brothers

What does it mean to be a man? Over the course of my life, I have had many opportunities to consider that question, particularly with regard to how it impacts my Catholic call to love as Jesus has loved me. This is not as easy as it seems. The world has its own views of […]

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Mystical Marriage

February 22, AD2017 0 Comments
Mystical Marriage

When Helen, said to be the most beautiful woman in Greek antiquity fled with her lover to Troy, she did not receive the reception that she expected. Although her lover was Paris, the son of the King, he and his courtiers were reluctant to admit her. One look at her face rightly confirmed that her […]

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The Horror of Sin

February 22, AD2017 3 Comments
The Horror of Sin

Sin.  Why is that one three-letter word so dangerous to mankind? Because it is the one thing that will keep us from ever being happy and fulfilled. Sin has the power to turn us away from God, instead of toward the light of Christ. Sin leads us away from Jesus and heaven, and towards the […]

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Pray Without Ceasing, Really?

February 21, AD2017 1 Comment
Pray Without Ceasing, Really?

Disclaimer Alert At the outset, it is important that I state that my wife and I are now retired and we have the opportunity to travel in a more leisurely manner than racing to the airport, trying to make connections, and getting upset with the TSA personnel.  Most often, if the trip is only going […]

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To Enter the Dance with Jesus

February 21, AD2017 0 Comments
To Enter the Dance with Jesus

One of the various middle school responsibilities for teachers includes chaperoning a middle school dance at which no one ever dances. After weeks of exciting gossip in the hall, texting among friends, decision-making about clothes and who’s going with whom, the event itself never measures up to its anticipation. Oh, there may be one or […]

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Why Christ Fell

February 20, AD2017 2 Comments
Why Christ Fell

I do not like icy streets.  They turn walking into an adventure where falling is a real possibility. I guess what I really do not like is falling.  Finding yourself on the ground is rarely a good result. The vantage point from the ground is usually not a good one.  The world tells us that […]

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I’m a Mystic (And So Are You)

February 19, AD2017 0 Comments
I’m a Mystic (And So Are You)

Earlier this month I participated in my first ever retreat, called “The Retreat in Daily Life.” It was a week-long retreat which took place in tandem with my work day; 30 minutes of prayer on my own in the morning, complemented by 30 minutes of scheduled discussion with a spiritual guide in the afternoon at […]

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How Can Imperfect Contrition Lead to Perfect Contrition?

February 17, AD2017 0 Comments
How Can Imperfect Contrition Lead to Perfect Contrition?

How can imperfect contrition lead to perfect contrition? To make a “good confession” and to receive absolution for sin, a sinner must be, according to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, “of contrite heart.” (Paragraph 1450). The sinner must have contrition. Imperfect Contrition The Catechism describes two types of contrition, each sufficient for effective reception […]

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Pride and Humility, Vice and Virtue

February 17, AD2017 0 Comments
Pride and Humility, Vice and Virtue

If you go to the website Brainy Quotes and do a search on “pride” you are apt to find more quotes lauding pride than those that disdain it. But the Bible is pretty clear about pride: “Pride goes before disaster, and a haughty spirit before a fall. It is better to be humble with the […]

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Our New Sacramental Temple

February 16, AD2017 0 Comments
Our New Sacramental Temple

O God, you are my God, I seek you, my soul thirsts for you. My flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where no water is. So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary, beholding your power and glory. (Psalm 63:1-2) As this passage from Psalm 63 tells us, the ancient Israelites yearned […]

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The Power of the Mass: Why We Believe What We Believe

February 15, AD2017 1 Comment
The Power of the Mass: Why We Believe What We Believe

This is the second part of a series on The Power of the Mass. Part one is available here. I have been inspired to make clear not only the true presence of Christ in the Eucharist, but also the continual sacrifice of Jesus on the altar at every Catholic Church throughout the world. The same […]

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The Stumbling Block of the Crucifix

February 14, AD2017 4 Comments
The Stumbling Block of the Crucifix

  As a Catholic, I am often challenged about our use and reverence for the crucifix.  The most common charge has been that the crucifix focuses on Christ’s death and fails to celebrate the Resurrection. But as Catholics we recognize these two events are necessarily intertwined. Each time we reflect on the image of Christ […]

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On Earth as In Heaven

February 13, AD2017 2 Comments
On Earth as In Heaven

What Does the Father Desire? Have you ever stopped to think about that? I spend so much time telling the Father what I desire that I rarely stop to ask Him what He desires. A friend once shared with me a humorous, yet convicting, conversation he had with his wife. She asked him, “If you […]

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A Child, A Stranger, the Body of Christ

February 12, AD2017 1 Comment
A Child, A Stranger, the Body of Christ

My 8-year-old grandson and a stranger both gave me a special gift one recent Sunday. And there I was thinking I was doing something good for them at Mass. Colin, my grandson, goes to Mass with his third-grade class a couple of times a week. He usually doesn’t go on Sundays, though. My son-in-law normally […]

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Inside the Faces of Pride

February 11, AD2017 1 Comment
Inside the Faces of Pride

Pride is something most of us understand to a certain extent.  Or, at the very least, we think we know what it looks like when we see it.  Whether seen in business leaders, politicians, celebrities, or neighbors, there is a type of pride that almost all of us recognize.  You can characterize it as bombastic, […]

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The Jew in the Catholic Church

February 10, AD2017 0 Comments
The Jew in the Catholic Church

“Today it is the Old Testament who suffers for the New one.” Sœur Mirjam Else Michaelis (1899 – 1942, Auschwitz) Can you imagine what might become of your life if you discovered you were Jewish? This happened to me at the age of seven when two Russian boys of my age were laughing at their companion […]

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The Problem of Ingrained Sin

February 10, AD2017 4 Comments
The Problem of Ingrained Sin

When we feel cut off from God, battling a losing war with ingrained sin, the only viable solution to our dilemma is to call out to Christ to save us. Instead, most of us strive to be perfect through self-discipline. It was a shock to me when my Spiritual Director challenged this tendency by saying, […]

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