Pope St. Gregory the Great, having heard that one of his noble friends had suddenly fallen on hard times, advises his friend to bear adversity with patience. But Gregory doesn’t stop with sympathy and advice: he also gives the material help he knows his friend needs, but might be too proud to ask for. I know all about your troubles with the things of this world. But our only comfort when we are in the deepest trouble is the mercy… Read more

Money is the root of all evil,” we often hear. But what St. Paul really said was that “the love of money is the root of all evils” (1 Timothy 6:10). St. Cyril of Jerusalem tells us that money can be used for good or for evil: you, the Christian, should use yours for good, and you will reap the reward of your works. Riches, gold, and silver do not belong to the devil, as some think. For the whole… Read more

Wealth isn’t really much fun, says St. John Chrysostom. A simple life is not only more conducive to virtue, but also just feels better. Let’s see whether wealth has any pleasure or honor—for in my eyes the case is just the opposite. First of all, if you don’t mind, let’s look into the meals of rich and poor, and ask the guests which ones enjoy the purest and most genuine pleasure. Is it the ones who recline on couches all… Read more

Christopher Reibold is a Catholic writer and storyteller, living near Pittsburgh, PA. At thirteen, he declined to make his confirmation. By seventeen, he was no longer attending mass. He worked for many years in the business world. Through his love of reading, he discovered the saints and became fascinated with their stories. His interest in the saints eventually led him to return to the Church in 2013. He was confirmed at Easter 2014. Since then, he has dedicated himself to… Read more

Whenever we have power over people, says St. John Chrysostom, we’re tempted to use that power for the basest ends. Better to have no wealth at all than to use our wealth for revenge. But riches, someone may say, bring honor to those who possess them, and give them the power to take vengeance on their enemies easily. Tell me, is this really a reason why riches seem desirable to you and worth striving for—that they nourish the most dangerous… Read more

The persecutions had ceased, and Christians were safe from the government. But they weren’t safe, says St. Gregory the Great, from the wiles of Satan, who knows how to make use of prosperity and security, too. Because the stress of the earlier tempests has lulled, and with the end of the struggle a measure of tranquility has seemed to smile on us for a long time, we have to guard against those errors that arise from the reign of peace… Read more

Writing a eulogy of his good friend Paula, a noble widow who was also his student, St. Jerome recalls how she used to give abundantly whenever she saw someone in need. No mind could be more considerate than hers, or none kinder towards the lowly. She did not court the powerful; at the same time, if the proud and the vainglorious sought her, she did not turn from them with disdain. If she saw a poor man, she supported him;… Read more

Review by Katie Zumbrum Be careful what you tweet about on Twitter.  A simple joke on Twitter can become a book.  That is exactly how this book came to life. The Catholic Hipster’s Handbook by Tommy Tighe is a delightful, humorous book that is sure to reach everyone at some level.  It reminds me of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series with themes and anecdotes by different authors.  There are many things I could say about this “handbook” but two… Read more

When food is scarce, prices go up. It’s just good business, right? No, says St. Ambrose. It’s one thing to get a fair return for your work, but it’s quite another to take advantage of human misery to turn an outrageous profit. “The people curse him who holds back grain” (Proverbs 11:26). This is a plain and definite statement, leaving no room for debate. Yes, you must expect payment for your labor from the crops of the fruitful land, and… Read more

St. Ambrose quotes the pagan philosopher Pythagoras to show that even the pa­gans admire selfless sharing between friends. But Christians are all family, so we should be all the more willing to share everything with our brothers and sisters. If one of the pagans has said that all the possessions of friends should be common, how much more ought those of relatives to be common! For we are relatives, because we are bound into one body. But we are not… Read more

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