• The Epiphany of Celibacy

    Over the past six months the Church has suffered horrid revelations of clergy sexual abuse, homosexual activity, and attendant cover-up. These scandals have understandably prompted some to call for an end to celibacy in the Catholic Church. It would seem that the discipline no longer serves us... Read more
  • Gracious Words

    One casualty of Original Sin was man’s gift of speech. We know from the account of the Tower of Babel that God meted out the confusion of language as a punishment for pride. But that particular punishment only sets in relief the damage that was really present from the start. God... Read more
  • Christmas and Resurrection

    We don’t often associate Christmas with resurrection. But we should. So let’s start by talking about Santa Claus. Christmas is openly under attack in contemporary society where the word has essentially been banned in favor of “holiday” and traditional Christmas carols have been replaced... Read more
  • Entering Into the True Christmas Joy

    It is that time of the year when we are easily focused on receiving and giving gifts from others that we easily fall for the oldest lie in the books: The more we get, the more joy that we will have in life. Knowingly or unknowingly, we believe and live by this lie, constantly searching for... Read more
  • A Meditation on an Often-Forgotten Advent Hymn

    One of the less-well-known Advent hymns is “Rorate Caeli Desuper” (Heavens, drop dew from above). It is a plaintive hymn that recalls our desperate need for a savior and concludes with consolations from God, who has heard our cries and hastens to save us. The refrain, which comes from... Read more
  • Life from Light: Advent hope in a world of crushing darkness

    “This life was the light of the human race.” — John 1:4 If by profession or hobby you are a speleologist, then you probably already know that Vietnam is home to the world’s largest cave, called Sơn Đoòng. Sơn Đoòng means “Mountain River Cave.” It is approximately nine... Read more
  • The Beauty and Power of the O Antiphons

    O come, O come, Emmanuel, and ransom captive Israel, that mourns in lonely exile here until the Son of God appear. Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to you, O Israel! This favored Christmas carol is no carol at all. It’s a hymn for the season of Advent — the liturgical season that... Read more
  • Why Did the Second Person of the Trinity, Rather Than the Father or the Holy Spirit, Become Incarnate?

    As we await the approaching Feast of Holy Christmas, we have been pondering some of St. Thomas Aquinas’ teachings on the Incarnation. Today we will consider why it was the Son, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, who became incarnate. Most people have never even thought of this... Read more
  • Domestic Church Bibliography

    Domestic Church Bibliography A Continual Feast: A Cookbook to Celebrate the Joys of Family and Faith Throughout the Christian Year, by Evelyn Birge Vitz (1991, Ignatius Press, San Francisco). Advent Begins at Home: Family Prayer and Activities, compiled by David Polek, C.SS.R., and Rita Anderhub... Read more
  • Cleansed and Conformed to God’s Will

    Father, We Thank Thee, Who Hast Planted” has long been one of my favorite hymns. Its tune, taken from the sixteenth-century Genevan Psalter, is eminently singable. The hymn text—when not corrupted by that politically-correct scoundrel, “alt.”—is even better. For Francis Bland... Read more