Extraordinary Synod on the Family Round-up

The Extraordinary Synod on the Family begins this weekend.  Here are some of the posts I've written over the last few months on the synod.  To see more great writing on the Synod by my fellow Patheos bloggers, go here!The Synod: What is it?  Who Cares? Pope Francis Calls Extraordinary Synod on the Family Why Is the Family So Important Anyway?– The Catholic Channel Symposium on the Extraordinary Synod for the Family. Sesame Street Tells Lies that Hurt Kids (OR, Why “Any Group of People / Li … [Read more...]

Yes, There IS a Catholic Way to Parent. Here’s Why.


Is there a Catholic way to parent?It really depends upon what you mean by the question.  If you mean, "Is there an approved list of preferred parenting methods the Church requires that we use for child rearing?"  Well then, of course the answer is "certainly not!"But if you mean, "Does our Catholic faith ask parents to have a mindset about parenting that reflects the Church's unique vision of family life and make choices that are mindful of that vision?"  Then the answer is, "u … [Read more...]

Cardinal Kasper and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Idea (and A Better Solution–If I Do Say So Myself)

In preparation for the Extraordinary Synod on the Family, many people of good will are floating a lot of different ideas about how the Church should approach various challenges like annulments. (To read my own previous writings on the annulment issue, including my recommendations for improving the annulment process, go here, here, and here.)Cardinal Kasper, former President for the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, recently waded into the debate with his own suggestion about … [Read more...]

A Special Day for Another “Dr. Greg”

It's the feast of my Patron Saint, Pope St. Gregory the Great, Doctor of the Church  … [Read more...]

Suicide and the Christian

In light of Robin Williams' tragic death there are a lot of people saying a lot of different things about Christianity and suicide. I thought it would be useful to take a moment to consider the wisdom the Catechism has to offer."Grave psychological disturbances, anguish, or grave fear of hardship, suffering, or torture can diminish the responsibility of the one committing suicide. We should not despair of the eternal salvation of persons who have taken their own lives. By ways known to him … [Read more...]

Does God Want YOU to Be Happy? Read Pope Francis’ 10 Point Happiness Plan

When I ask people, "What do you want?"  The #1 answer I get is, "I just want to be happy."  Happiness is a hard enough goal to achieve but Christians have an extra hurdle.  Upon expressing a desire for happiness, many of my Catholic clients immediately say, "But I feel guilty because God doesn't really care about my happiness. He wants me to be holy."Are Happiness and Holiness Mutually Exclusive?I have often heard the phrase, "God desires our holiness more than our happiness."  I und … [Read more...]

Religion is Bad for Marriage (when there’s not enough of it)

Great post over at David French's blog on the Evangelical Channel on Patheos.  The Blue States often sneer at the South because the South claims higher rates of religiousness but ALSO higher divorce rates.  Many liberals take this to assume that religious people in general are just a bunch of hypocrites.  I'll let David take it from here.It’s pretty simple: When it comes to marriage, church attendance matters more than church affiliation.I’ve often heard the South described as “God-h … [Read more...]

Annulment Q & A: 6 Common Questions About Annulments.–UPDATED


The Patheos Catholic Channel is hosting a Symposium on the Family in light of the upcoming Extraordinary Synod on the Family in October and the recent release of the working document for the Synod.As a pastoral counselor, I often work with people who are either going through divorce or who have been recently divorced.  Often these individuals have very important questions about the annulment process: What is it?  Should they seek one? What difference does it make?  The following are some of t … [Read more...]