Listen to Your Lawyer

“Settle with your opponent quickly while on the way to court. Otherwise your opponent will hand you over to the judge, and the judge will hand you over to the guard, and you will be thrown into prison. Amen, I say to you, you will not be released until you have paid the last penny.” […]

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Got Wine?

Since Pope John Paul II introduced the Luminous Mysteries of the Rosary a few years ago, it’s been a joy and sometimes a challenge for my family to embrace these new mysteries. We are always on the lookout for new ways of approaching these rich episodes in Christ’s life. As we’ve given more attention to the […]

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Give It up!

I remember well my first Lent in a religious community in the 1980s. Most of us seminarians, like many people out in the world, gave up sweets for 40 days. The one time that this penance really came into play was during the afternoon coffee break. The nearby Au Bon Pain restaurant donated day-old pastries […]

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Memories that Come Alive

I’m a diehard sports fan, so I was really in my glory this past “Super Bowl weekend,” even though my beloved Chiefs weren’t playing for the 38th consecutive time–but who’s counting. I’ve never been to a Super Bowl, which would be awesome, but I’ve been to plenty of major sporting events in my life. If […]

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Dual Citizenship

Even though it’s written on our souls rather than our passports, our true home is heaven. As God’s children by adoption (cf. Gal. 4:4-7), we are citizens of both the earthly kingdom and the heavenly kingdom. There is one significant difference between our earthly citizenship and our heavenly citizenship. As citizens of this world, we […]

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The Eucharistic Difference

At Mass, we encounter the mystery of Christ becoming truly present under the appearance of bread and wine. Even though the sacred species look exactly the same after the consecration as they did before the consecration, we know by faith that there’s a world of difference. Our Lord and Savior is truly present in our […]

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Getting Personal

Our Lord Jesus Christ calls each one of us to an intimate, personal relationship with Him. Unfortunately, some Catholics are uncomfortable with this “personal relationship” terminology. Yet Christianity is not a mere moral code, ethnic club, or cultural phenomenon. Rather, at its very core is the acceptance of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, as […]

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Separating the Fruit from the Nuts

Yesterday I commented on the phenomenon of seemingly good spiritual fruit coming from questionable sources in the Church. Today, I would like to offer a few biblical observations to help us make more sense of this situation as lay Catholics. (1) As St. Paul writes, “Test everything; retain what is good” (1 Thess. 5:21). At least for […]

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Our Parish Family

“Father, hear the prayers of the family you have gathered here before you” (Eucharistic Prayer III). What do we think of when our parish priest reads these words at Mass? Are we alert enough to hear and embrace this petition? Do we consider this reference to our being a “family” a merely poetic expression or […]

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Rise and Walk

Today’s Gospel at Mass was St. Luke’s account of the healing of the paralytic. One verse from that passage has always stood out to me: “When Jesus saw their faith, he said, ‘As for you, your sins are forgiven’” (Lk. 5:20). Jesus attributes the healing–physical and spiritual–of the paralytic to the faith of his four […]

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