Out of Africa

Today we celebrate the feast of St. Josephine Bakhita, an African saint who was canonized just a few years ago by Pope John Paul II. I really didn’t know that much about her, other than the fact that she was from the Sudan, had been kidnapped in youth, and eventually became a religious in Italy. […]

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A Word to the Verbose

My “guardian angel” left this quote from St. Francis de Sales on my desk this morning:  ”The worst defect in talking is talking too much. Hence, in speech be brief and virtuous, brief and gentle, brief and simple, brief and charitable, brief and amiable.” Okay, I get the message. (Don’t have to hit me over […]

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Putting on Heirs

Today is the feast of St. Raymond of Penyafort. As readers will recall, I have an adopted son named Raymond, and having this great Dominican canonist as a patron saint played into our name selection. What I didn’t realize at the time was that I (or should I say, my son) was getting a Dominican […]

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A Man on Omission

Today is the feast of St. Basil the Great, a fourth-century bishop and doctor of the Church. A priest friend just sent me this remarkable quote from St. Basil’s writings: “The bread which you do not use is the bread of the hungry; the garment hanging in your wardrobe is the garment of him who […]

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The Beloved Disciple

The Church has always identified the Apostle John as the author of the fourth Gospel and the beloved disciple described in that Gospel. This common belief is richly reflected in the Church’s liturgy. The universal Church today celebrates the Feast of St. John, Apostle and Evangelist. The readings, prayers, and antiphons unmistakably reflect the belief of […]

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A Bishop’s Bishop

Today is the feast of St. Ambrose, a remarkable fourth-century bishop and saint, who is considered a “doctor of the Church” because of his excellence as a teacher of timeless Catholic truth. Many saints have their feast day on or at least near the day of their death, which is understood as the day they […]

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The Real St. Nick

As we prepare for the sublime feast of the Nativity of Our Lord during these weeks of Advent, we can’t help but notice the trappings of our secular culture that continually impose themselves on the “holiday season.” Meanwhile, more overtly religious expressions, such as créches or Nativity scenes, are systematically excluded from the public square. […]

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The Last Father

Today the Church celebrates the feast of St. John Damascene. For many years I have considered him the patron saint of my computer. Of course, I’m the same guy who thinks Blessed Kateri Takeitwithya is the patroness of fast food restaurants! Actually, St. John Damascene (died c. 750 A.D.), priest and monk, is considered the last […]

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According to Luke

“Saints week” continues today with the feast of St. Luke, author of the third Gospel and companion of St. Paul. I don’t know about you, but I grow weary of study Bibles and Bible studies that go to great lengths to explain to us that so and so didn’t actually write the book of the […]

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