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Tag: redemptive suffering

The Other Side of a Vocation Story

March 2, AD2018 1 Comment
The Other Side of a Vocation Story

I have prayed the Prayer for Vocations a couple thousand times and yet it wasn’t until fourteen years ago that it struck a chord. There is something they don’t tell you when you pray this prayer. Over the years, I have heard about the vocation crisis and how the Church needs more priests and religious. […]

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The Insidiousness of the Culture of Death

February 16, AD2018 0 Comments
The Insidiousness of the Culture of Death

My mother died on February 26, 2006. She spent most of February in the hospital. When it became clear she was never going home, medical staff suggested we utilize their new inpatient palliative care unit. Mom would be their first patient. We thought she would die more comfortably there, so we agreed. Staff was compassionate. […]

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The Masculinity and Mortification of Auden’s St. Joseph

December 16, AD2017 3 Comments
The Masculinity and Mortification of Auden’s St. Joseph

After two millennia, our veneration of Mary might make it somewhat difficult to imagine how St. Joseph might have seen her when he first heard of her pregnancy. Our familiarity with the joy of Christmas obscures the shock and embarrassment of what was surely seen to be a profound betrayal. Even the recounting of St. […]

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Via Dolorosa, or “The Way of Suffering”

December 15, AD2017 0 Comments
Via Dolorosa, or “The Way of Suffering”

Dolores. In Spanish, it means “suffering.” Catholics use the phrase “Our Lady of Dolours” when talking about the sorrowful mother. Dolores, then, would be a fitting name for a woman who suffered much and loved Mary much. Dolores was my mother. She was an incredibly loving woman. I credit the great relationship I have with […]

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Why Most of Us Are Scapegoats, Not Saintly Martyrs

July 11, AD2017 11 Comments
Why Most of Us Are Scapegoats, Not Saintly Martyrs

Every society, every culture has a tradition of a scapegoat: a person or group of people to blame and punish for the sins of that particular society. Centuries ago, old women were blamed for poor crops, cows which failed to produce milk and any birth defects. Less superstitious societies turned on each new group of […]

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The Despair of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

June 19, AD2017 2 Comments
The Despair of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child has a host of artistic problems, but its most profound failures are of moral understanding. Whereas the original novels by J.K. Rowling embraced the Christian sanctity of life, understanding that death was an evil, and expressed hope for repentance and forgiveness of sins, this late coming play, written by […]

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The Spark in The Thin Red Line: Why I Remain Catholic

February 9, AD2017 2 Comments
The Spark in The Thin Red Line: Why I Remain Catholic

One of my favorite movies, if not my favorite of all time, is Terrence Malick’s The Thin Red Line. I watched this movie in my senior year of college, with my beautiful wife (we had been married for about three months at that point) and my fellow classmates, for a class on Terrence Malick’s films. […]

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Redemptive Suffering and the Phony Victim Complex

March 27, AD2015 39 Comments
Redemptive Suffering and the Phony Victim Complex

Genuine, spiritually powerful redemptive suffering  does exist as a genuine call from God. However, what most of us experience is far from redemptive, because our suffering is not in union with Christ’s suffering. Redemptive suffering is not long-faced misery, because it is life-giving and life-affirming as we live in, with and through Christ our Saviour. This […]

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