Catholic Living

Sacred Heart of Jesus (Vernon Wiering)

A thing of beauty is a joy forever: Its loveliness increases; it will never Pass into nothingness; but still will keep A bower quiet for us, and a sleep Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.
      ∼  John Keats, the opening to Endymion In 1923 Polish immigrants, living in Grand Rapids and earning [...]

A thing of beauty is a joy forever: Its loveliness increases; it will never Pass into nothingness; but still will keep A bower quiet for us, and a sleep Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.
      ∼  John Keats, the opening to Endymion In 1923 Polish immigrants, living in Grand Rapids and earning [...]

On October 6, 2015, Archbishop Paul-André Durocher of Gatineau, Canada surprised Catholic Synod observers when he called for more study on the possibility of women deacons. In the course of his allotted three-minute address to the assembled bishops at the Synod on the Family, the Archbishop suggested that admitting women to the permanent diaconate could [...]

Once it became clear that I was returning to the Church (a story for another time), I set out to study the Catechism, along with as much Catholic theology and philosophy as I could get. For the past few years I have been studying the work of Msgr. Robert Sokolowski, of Catholic University—as fine a [...]

Why Pray?

Hope is the thing with feathers, That perches in the soul, And sings the tune without the words, And never stops at all… ∼ Emily Dickinson If hope is a virtue we cannot reach heaven without, where then is the handle we need to take hold of to get there? The answer is prayer, which is [...]

Borrowing from C. S. Lewis’ The Screwtape Letters, Father Paul Scalia once wrote that the Devil can’t create. “The Devil is unable to create anything. He lacks the ability to create…. He can only take what is good and distort it a bit…. So the Devil takes the good things of God and he mimics [...]

In September 1953, a group of 20-somethings and their young parish priest embarked on the first of what would be 26 annual kayaking trips into the wilderness near where they all lived and worked, taking time away from normal life to enjoy the water, the wilderness, and, most of all, a prayerful retreat with each other. This group—Środowisko, as [...]

As we await the beginning of the Year of Mercy on December 8, I was asked to speak to fellow catechists regarding the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. Of the two groups (each comprising seven acts or works) my fellow catechists were more familiar with the former. This is perhaps because of Christ’s words [...]

Voltaire, eighteenth-century French philosopher and well-known attacker of Catholicism, once wrote, “If you want to kill Christianity, you must abolish Sunday.” Where the Sabbath rest and worship is forgotten, a weak to nonexistent practice of Christianity can almost inevitably be found. Conversely, those who take their spiritual life seriously know that Sunday is the key [...]

It is always a little sad when the miracle doesn’t happen. So, when the Supreme Court waved its magic gavel last summer and rhetorically ended the citizens’ debate over the newly discovered “right” to same-sex "marriage," the decision was greeted with frustration and a deep sense of betrayal on the part of many faithful Catholics. [...]

We at the Ukrainian Catholic University were surprised and disappointed by Dr. Alexander Sich’s recent article in Crisis Magazine. The Ukrainian Catholic University proudly teaches and promotes Church doctrine on the integrity of the family and the theology of the body, including its teachings on abortion, marital fidelity, birth control, and the sacred nature of [...]

In Morituri Salutamus, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s moving tribute to fallen friends, the poet himself remains surprisingly serene in the face of death, fortified against every indication of its imminence. While it is not unmanly, he insists, to lament those who are no more, the game is not yet over for the rest of us. “Ah,” [...]

I still vividly remember the nuns who taught my elementary CCD classes, and the impression they made on me and my fellow students. They hammered the implications of the Ten Commandments into us, as well as the consequences for disobedience, with a heavy seriousness that made its mark on my memory. Our pastor, Father (now Monsignor) [...]

I am here now, in your room, your last room… It was here the doors were opened and He came in person to meet you… So starts a quite remarkable book: Chiara Corbella Petrillo: A Witness to Joy by Simone Troisi & Cristiana Paccini, just translated into English and published by Sophia Institute Press. Indeed, the publishers [...]

In Evangelii Gaudium Pope Francis reminds us that the Eucharist is “not a prize for the perfect but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak.” Amen to that. It is also true, however, that the Eucharist is not magic dust. The Eucharist, like Jesus during his ministry, “works” in relationship with the faith of [...]

We can all agree that gaining understanding is at a premium when it comes to the topic of homosexuality. So what are we to make of (the words) "homosexual" and "gay"? Are these two words alike? Are they synonymous in meaning? Perhaps they are. Then again, there are such differences in people's minds when they [...]

I recently read an article in New York Magazine lauding Pope Francis in anticipation of his visit to the United States. Amongst the many typical inanities and ignorant statements one finds in such pieces was the following quote: “The pope’s religious message—that the Gospel should be joyful, merciful, and embrace everyone, especially the poor—is plain [...]

A half-dozen of the usually non-monolithic Spiritual Friends have joined forces in an educational project that, unfortunately, will probably bring more confusion than clarity to Catholics seeking to understand what the Church has to say about same-sex attraction. The website—a chastity-education project from a Yonkers, New York group called the St. Augustine Foundation—invites people [...]

An unfortunate occurrence in our era is the isolation of age groups, the idealization of youth, and the neglect of both the elderly and the very young. By isolating the age groups, gratitude and sacrificial love fall out of practice. But when generations live together, life falls into proper perspective, which fosters receptivity to the [...]

Two years ago I began to notice regular columns in First Things from those who identified as homosexual, chaste and supportive of Church teaching on marriage and human sexuality. It became immediately clear there was a movement afoot, one that I hadn’t noticed nor had anyone else outside of a small bubble, but that it [...]

1)  Because it is not enough to be quietly horrified by Planned Parenthood killing babies and selling baby parts. The doors into your local abortion clinic are the gates of hell. You are called to exercise your prophetic charism and unambiguously witness to the truth. 2)  Because Planned Parenthood and the abortion/baby part industry radiates [...]

Although even secularist historians admit that Pope St. John Paul II inspired the rise of Solidarity and dealt a death blow to the Soviet Empire, the pivotal role Polish Catholicism played in anti-Nazi and anti-Soviet resistance is less well-known. The 70th anniversary of the end of World War II this year is a fitting time to [...]