March 29, 2018

As an eager Evangelical, I once wrote an article about tradition in the context of a Sunday morning worship service. Long before becoming Catholic, I was processing the idea that all Christian modes of faith come with a certain level of tradition, even if it wasn’t as the high liturgical ritual of a Catholic Mass.   Here’s how a typical Sunday morning in my non-denominational church would look. We gathered in the pews before the service began catching up with friends before… Read more

March 18, 2018

Before we even begin to discuss Peter as Pope we need to get one thing out of the way: no church historian, worth their weight, would ever claim that Peter was the first Pope—in the exact way we understand it today. Like our understanding of the Trinity, the canon of the New Testament (what books make up our Bibles), and our doctrines surrounding salvation and the after-life these concepts, naturally, developed over time as the Church grew into its britches. The… Read more

March 14, 2018

I was once asked the question by a friend of mine, “Which is more important: The Bible or tradition?” As a good evangelical I knew that the answer to any question in Sunday School was either “the Bible” or “Jesus” and although I wasn’t in Sunday School any longer I knew tradition couldn’t be the answer. “The Bible,” I said confidently, congratulating myself for knowing so much about my faith. “But who put the Bible together?” My friend replied. “Wasn’t it… Read more

February 25, 2018

If you’re at all a Vatican watcher like me then you’ll have heard something of the remarks made by Cardinal Robert Sarah this past week. Cardinal Sarah, a Guinea-born priest, is prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. The African priest, being a bit more conservatively-minded in his approach to the Liturgy, is often at odds with Pope Francis in that respect and, as a result, is often in the news. The media love a… Read more

February 2, 2018

I hate to admit this, but it’s probably true: We are who we are in the dark. That doesn’t bode well when I’m bouncing a shrieking, fussy newborn in the waning hours of the night. And I’m only up until 11pm, it’s my wife that has the middle-of-the-night shift. (St. Gianna Molla, pray for us!) But, reticent as we may be to admit it, we know it’s true. Our true, unvarnished, completely non-gussed-up self is the one that’s often really in… Read more

January 31, 2018

As a Christian of no real denominational or theological affiliation, I always struggled with Paul’s seemingly off-the-cuff remark in his epistle to the Colossians, Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I do my share on behalf of His body, which is the church, in filling up what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions. (1:24; NASB) What exactly did Paul mean when he implied that Jesus’ “afflictions” were lacking? How did he make up for a… Read more

January 29, 2018

I like to people watch, it’s always fascinating. This past Sunday I sat in the narthex area of our bustling little church. It’s a tiny old church, a chapel really, with a number of tasteful additions holding it all together. With my wife and our newborn baby at home, the toddler and I made the trek to church alone this morning. The negotiation to get him through the door of his Sunday School class was a bit lengthy and by the time… Read more

December 17, 2017

Because of the wackiness that is this year’s liturgical calendar many Catholics in North America are scratching their hands, trying to figure out exactly how many times they need to be at church this upcoming Christmas Weekend. Or, rather, trying to determine exactly how to get out of it. Unfortunately, for the latter group, the answer isn’t very encouraging: basically, twice. You have to be at church twice. And, in some cases, it might even be twice on the same day…. Read more

December 16, 2017

The Catholic Church, sprawled across every corner of the globe, is full of some truly bizarre customs and traditions. Understanding why we do what, what it means, and how to explain it to others can often be fundamental to sharing our faith—and to appreciating it deeper. The custom of kissing the Pope’s ring, of sometimes kneeling down before him or bowing, is one of those strange habits that we Catholics do and in a society increasingly blurring the lines between… Read more

October 17, 2017

One of the most responding, human impulses that St. Paul describes in his letters to the early churches is the idea of wanting to do what he doesn’t do. “For what I want to do, I do not do,” Paul writes in his letter to the Romans. In this, Paul captures something so profound that scholars and poets alike have spent the last two millennia working to unpack it. The want to do something other than what we do and, sometimes, the mere want… Read more

Follow Us!



Browse Our Archives