March 24, 2019

What Really Matters – I

(It came to me recently that I have only about a dozen more columns before I retire; so I’m going to aim – unless circumstances interfere – to focus on “what really matters” between now and June.) Jesus does something very interesting in today’s Gospel; we can learn from it. […]
December 9, 2018

Our Pagan Culture and Its Gods IV: Aphrodite

Aphrodite (Venus in the Roman pantheon) is the goddess of erotic love and sexual desire.  This is a good and a necessary, God-created, part of our humanity. As with most instincts, it’s a good servant of human flourishing, but it makes a poor master.  Are there people around us today […]
December 2, 2018

Our Pagan Culture and Its Gods III: Mammon

It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for one who is rich to enter the kingdom of God. Jesus in the Gospel, Mk 10:25 Architecture can tell us a lot.  If you think of a cityscape in cultures that existed before (or […]
November 25, 2018

Our Pagan Culture and Its Gods II: Mars

The pagan culture into which Christianity was born had a “god” for every aspect of life.  They were worshipped, in addition to their individual shrines, in structures like the Pantheon (literally: all the gods) in Rome, which we may have seen in our travels.  But the real worship of any […]
November 18, 2018

Our Pagan Culture and Its Gods I: Moloch

As our political, church, and cultural life continues to become more toxic by the day, it may be useful to think about our situation in a very traditional religious context: Our root problem is idolatry.   (There’s a reason that the warning against idolatry is in the first of the Ten […]
November 11, 2018

For Those Who Haven’t Heard

At the Masses last weekend, in my State of the Parish Report, I announced that Bishop Barres has accepted my request to retire as pastor here effective June 2019.  I believe that the mission of the parish – to change lives through the Risen Christ – can be well-served in […]
November 4, 2018

The State of Our Parish – 2018

There‘s more to be said than I have time for in my State of the Parish Report from the pulpit this week.  Here I want to address briefly two threads that connect us to the larger church and culture; we have to remember that we don’t live in a vacuum.
October 28, 2018

Saints and Souls – II

Friday is All Souls’ Day so let’s talk about Purgatory.  Start with a story. Some years ago I walked into a wake service to preside and, since I didn’t know the deceased, looked for a family member to give me a bit of background.  One of the sons came up […]
October 21, 2018

Saints and Souls – I

A week from Thursday is All Saints’ Day, and the day after is All Souls’.  So I want to use these two weeks’ columns to write about the Communion of Saints.
October 12, 2018

Does Pope Francis “Get It”?

I have a great deal of respect for our Holy Father, and as a Catholic and a priest I owe him (and give him) great deference – to him personally, not only to his office.  But it’s quite legitimate to ask whether he truly understands the gravity of the situation […]