Fr. Vin – As I See It

Taking the Satan Seriously

Talking about the Satan makes people (including me) uncomfortable.  It’s unfashionable, certainly; who “believes in” the Satan anymore? Except the Holy Father, who talks about the Satan regularly; and not a few people who have faced square-on the nearly-incomprehensible sorts of suffering that humans all too often inflict on other humans; and people who think deeply about the tiny things that can tip over into catastrophe (a half-seconds’ delay in hitting the brake pedal leads to deaths or lifetimes of disability and pain from an auto accident, to take just one everyday example). Read more →

Reverence for the Blessed Sacrament

This might be a good topic to consider on this feast, called The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ.  I fear we lose something important to our spiritual health when we’re too casual around Mass and the Blessed Sacrament.  Here are some observations and suggestions: Read more →

Will the Christian Church Survive?

Recently I came across an article with this title. I entered the major seminary in 1966, so I’ve been watching the church for more than a half-century at this point; and I think the author got things about right.  He says near the start, “Carried along by inertia, churchmen have watched without comprehension while congregations have melted away, while the secularly educated younger generation increasingly has absented itself from worship and activity.”  That’s been my experience, and quite possibly yours too. Later, diagnosing the problem, he continues, “If the Church is in any real sense to influence the world of tomorrow, it would seem that the Church must reform itself so that it can make a new and almost brutal proclamation of the ethics of Christ.”  Here’s his list of items for that proclamation (all exact quotes, shortened with ellipses omitted so I can fit his list here): Read more →

The Spirit of Truth

I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now.
When he comes, the Spirit of truth
He will guide you to all truth.

Jesus in today’s Gospel, John 16:12-13a

If the Holy Spirit leads us toward truth, who leads us away from truth? Jesus himself tells us the answer: “[The devil] was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him.  When he lies, he speaks according to his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” [John 8:44] It seems that Jesus is convinced that truth-telling and lying is a high-stakes game. And lying is all around us. Read more →

From the Holy Father: Rejoice and Exult!

On April 8 Pope Francis published a remarkable Apostolic Exhortation. It is, at root, a simple guide to everyday holiness.   It’s long, but the heart of it is a meditation on the ethical demands of the Beatitudes. I think that for those of us in the U.S. these paragraphs are especially important: Read more →

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