I can’t help it,” we often say when we’ve cursed and used bad language. St. John Chrysostom has a practical suggestion: if you can’t help saying something when you get hurt, teach yourself to speak in thanksgiving instead of blasphemy. But, you say, you are not able to be silent when goaded by pain. And I do not hinder you from speaking. But instead of blasphemy, speak praise. Instead of discontent, express thankfulness. Make confession to your Master; cry aloud… Read more

Is someone abusing or insulting you? Best to keep silent, says St. Ambrose. You will keep yourself from sin, and people will think better of you. But we must also guard against anyone who provokes us, and spurs us on, and exasperates us, and supplies what will excite us to licentiousness or lust. So if anyone reviles us, irritates, stirs us up to violence, tries to make us quarrel— let us keep silence. Let us not be ashamed to become… Read more

The devil tempts us to snap back when someone insults us, says St. Ambrose. Or, often enough, the devil doesn’t have to do it, because someone else is willing to whisper in our ears. But we will always come out on top if we keep cool and silent. So, then, you should also guard your humility. But if you are unwilling to appear too humble, you think like this, saying to yourself, “Am I supposed to let this man despise… Read more

Making fun of people makes us like Satan, says St. Ephrem the Syrian. Not only should we avoid doing it ourselves, but we should flee if we even hear mockery. If you love derision, you are just like Satan; and if you mock your fellow, you are the mouth of the devil. If you delight in calling people names because of their defects and flaws, Satan is not in creation but you have seized his place by force. Run far… Read more

The visionary Shepherd of Hermas was a very influential book in early Christian times. Here the writer is commanded to keep away from slander. Even listening to malicious gossip makes you part of the sin. Be simple and guileless, and you will be like children who don’t know the wickedness that ruins man’s life. First, do not speak evil of anyone, and do not listen with pleasure to anyone who speaks evil of another. If you do listen, you will… Read more

Chris Stewart is a loving husband, father, and dynamic speaker who has engaged youth and adults with captivating talks for 20 years. His experience in youth ministry and public speaking began in 1996 when he first taught for Totus Tuus, a summer youth catechetical program. He discovered his gift of speaking and has continued throughout the years giving countless talks in the areas of catechetics, theology, spirituality and evangelization. Chris earned his Masters of Theological Studies from the Institute of… Read more

It’s quite reasonable to joke about people when you know it will actually make them feel good, says St. Clement of Alexandria. But making fun of people is a dangerous sport, and one a Christian needs to avoid. Older people, looking on the young as children, may (though very rarely) be playful with them, joking with them to train them in good behavior. For exam­ple, if you’re with a bashful and silent young man, you might jokingly say, “This son… Read more

Watch what you say to the people around you, says St. Clement of Alexandria. A Christian’s job is to spread goodwill, not to stir up ill feelings. We should keep away from mocking, the beginning of insults, from which fights and disagreements and grudges burst forth. A man is judged from his words, not just from his deeds. “Do not reprove your neighbor at a banquet of wine,” as the saying is. “Speak no word of reproach to him” (Sirach… Read more

It’s officially here…..the Christmas time crunch! If you are a last minute shopper and are scrambling for a gift to get that hard to shop for family OR you just wait until the last minute to undertake this task…..here a few suggestions I’ve gotten my hands on that I recommend. Everyone could use a calendar or planner, and there are numerous choices out there. I’m going to lead this guide off with my personal favorite that deserves a cherished spot… Read more

We often think a lie is good, or at least harmless, if it brings some good effect. But it isn’t, says St. Augustine. The truth is a sacred thing, and we should no more think of lying for a good reason than we would think of committing adultery for a good reason. We must consider every lie a sin, because we should always speak what is in our hearts: not only when we know the truth, but even when we… Read more

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