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Faith & Spirituality

Are Most Christians Clueless About Their True Identity?

June 23, AD2017 3 Comments
Are Most Christians Clueless About Their True Identity?

A  good friend, Martha, from Madonna House, “happened” to sit beside a self-proclaimed witch on an old bus heading towards the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico. Noticing Martha’s large cross identifying her as a member of the Lay Apostolate, the witch cynically remarked that most Christians were stupid because they were completely clueless […]

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Practice Makes Perfect in Life and Prayer

June 23, AD2017 2 Comments
Practice Makes Perfect in Life and Prayer

Although we do not like to admit it, even to ourselves, we still believe that prayer suddenly happens, or never happens at all. We kid ourselves that saints are born, or created by an arbitrary decision of God who every now and then suddenly decides to top up humanity’s quota. This is a comforting idea […]

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Have the People Recline

June 22, AD2017 2 Comments
Have the People Recline

Summer is here with its invitation to come outdoors, to be in God’s healing and restorative nature.  Childhood memories of picnics at state parks or simple days at the beach remind me what summer can be if I so choose.  In this season of natural sensory abundance, natural drawing out-of-doors, I sense the Lord asking […]

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Healing Through the Blessed Sacrament

June 19, AD2017 9 Comments
Healing Through the Blessed Sacrament

Be sober and vigilant. Your opponent the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8 I had a dream last night that I was on my patio planting some flowers. Everything seemed fine until I looked up and saw something coming towards me in the distance. I […]

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The Lessons of Saint Bernadette of Lourdes

June 18, AD2017 1 Comment
The Lessons of Saint Bernadette of Lourdes

Every year, more than three million pilgrims visit the small French town of Lourdes to pray for healing and grace. Lourdes is perhaps the most famous and beloved Catholic pilgrimage site in the world, and it continues to inspire and strengthen those who visit. Many come to seek healing and solace from Our Lady, who […]

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Finding Your True Self in Marian Devotion

June 18, AD2017 5 Comments
Finding Your True Self in Marian Devotion

I have written before that my spiritual life is owed to Mary. A few years ago, after a long period of lapsed faith, I felt suddenly called to pray the Rosary, which was followed by daily Mass attendance, then Confirmation into the Church, and the rest, as they say, is history. It is impossible for […]

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Shaping the Image of God: Thoughts about Fatherhood

June 17, AD2017 3 Comments
Shaping the Image of God: Thoughts about Fatherhood

I have been thinking a lot about fatherhood lately. Having put in quite a few years as a dad with three beautiful children, you would think that by now I would be an expert on the subject. Sadly, such is not the case. I find myself still questioning why I am not the “perfect” father […]

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Hanoi Jane Excepted, Ora Pro Nobis

June 17, AD2017 11 Comments
Hanoi Jane Excepted, Ora Pro Nobis

Is a prayer like this Okay? Hanoi Jane Excepted, Ora Pro Nobis My good friend, Captain Ronald Bliss (may he rest in peace now), on his 35th combat mission over North Vietnam in 1966, after his F-105 Thunderchief was shot down, was incarcerated in the Hoa Lo Prison, the infamous “Hanoi Hilton.”  He was there […]

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Why Priests Are Men

June 16, AD2017 20 Comments
Why Priests Are Men

priests It’s very common in our culture today for people to think that much of what we Catholics believe is behind the times and out of touch with the modern world. Most often, these sorts of accusations are leveled against the Church’s moral teachings (particularly in the area of sexuality), but that is not always […]

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God is Good and “Everything Happens For A Reason”

June 15, AD2017 3 Comments
God is Good and “Everything Happens For A Reason”

Does “Everything happen for a reason”? Things do happen for a reason, but what is the reason and who is the author of everything that happens? About 8 years ago, my wife four children, a friend and I were hanging out in our house when a massive storm rolled in and a bolt of lightning […]

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Freedom Is Not Born from Evil

June 15, AD2017 1 Comment
Freedom Is Not Born from Evil

The subtle, evil coercion of lies I was told, and expected to believe as true, from the women’s movement over our reproductive rights came to encompass my ensuing years in solitary confinement. This affliction was never spoken of, nor allowed, as it was the forbidden subject — a slow drip of acid as the lifelong sentence for […]

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The Deadly Cancer of Anger

June 14, AD2017 5 Comments
The Deadly Cancer of Anger

“This deadly cancer of anger… makes us unlike ourselves, makes us like timber wolves or furies from Hell, drives us forth headlong upon the points of swords, makes us blindly run forth after other men’s destruction as we hasten toward our own ruin.” This quote by St. Thomas More goes a long way to explain […]

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“Fake News” – The Paganization of the Church

June 13, AD2017 7 Comments
“Fake News” – The Paganization of the Church

Social media today is flooded with what some call ‘fake news’ stories. Whether it is a falsification about an archaeological discovery, an allegation of criminal activity by a company, or a ploy to demean a political figure, it is amazing the lies people will tell – and believe. These stories, often with very convincing details, […]

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Believing in a God who Acts in History

June 12, AD2017 1 Comment
Believing in a God who Acts in History

The historicity of God—God’s presence in history—should never be taken for granted, yet we do have a tendency to forget that God is active in history. The apostles and St. Paul testified about historical facts. They were not acting as ethical philosophers who had invented a new code of ethics. No, they were people who […]

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A Devotional : Light of Life

June 11, AD2017 1 Comment
A Devotional : Light of Life

“Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled,”  [Luke 1:45]. We all know the pleasure of being outdoors on a beautiful day under a big blue sky with the warmth and light of the sun on our faces. A feeling of peace and serenity comes over […]

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The Five Ways of St. Thomas Aquinas, Part I

June 11, AD2017 7 Comments
The Five Ways of St. Thomas Aquinas, Part I

Thomas Aquinas’ Ways But on one particular day, she grabbed my full, locked-on attention. She was talking about St. Thomas Aquinas’ famous Five Logical Proofs of God’s Existence, or five ways to demonstrate God’s existence. Up until that moment, I’d pretty much taken the Catholic Church’s teachings for granted. But this was new! These five […]

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The First Principle is Christian Unity

June 10, AD2017 6 Comments
The First Principle is Christian Unity

Some Protestant clergy have chosen unity over fragmentation. They have given up everything to become Catholic and lead congregations into the Catholic Faith. On February 12th, 2012, Monsignor Jeffrey Steenson was installed as the first Ordinary for the Anglican Ordinariate (1) in the United States.  In his installation homily, he uttered some of the dearest […]

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Fr. Francis L. Sampson: Paratrooper Padre

June 10, AD2017 3 Comments
Fr. Francis L. Sampson: Paratrooper Padre

A leap year baby, Francis L. Sampson was born on February 29, 1912, in Cherokee Iowa. A quarter of a century later he graduated from Notre Dame and made a bee-line for St. Paul’s Seminary at Saint Paul Minnesota.  Ordained a priest for the Des Moines Iowa diocese on June 1, 1941, he served briefly […]

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A REAL Approach to Counseling: Helping Teens Engage Fear

June 9, AD2017 1 Comment
A REAL Approach to Counseling: Helping Teens Engage Fear

We all have a moment in our lives when our innocence is lost, when we come to see that the world is sometimes a dangerous and fearful place. The sad reality is that we live in a culture of fear and personal pain that is the result of sin and selfishness. As a Catholic youth […]

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We Are Different Than Butterflies

June 9, AD2017 19 Comments
We Are Different Than Butterflies

I walked out of the church after Mass, through the small courtyard towards the parking lot. In that staggered line of people, I happened to be directly behind a young girl and her mother. The older lady could have been her grandmother because the young girl was probably in her early teens. I’ll call her […]

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