A guest blog by Deacon Dominic Cerrato, Ph.D., Director of the Pastoral Solutions Institute’s Spiritual Direction Program. Traditionally, spiritual direction was most closely associated with clergy and religious as part of growth in the interior life. Throughout the history of the Church, few lay people received formal spiritual direction relying instead on the confessional and private devotions. As a result of the Second Vatican Council with its emphasis on the vocation of the laity, spiritual direction is no longer primarily… Read more

Sorry, guys. CARNEGIE MELLON RESEARCHERS FIND MORE SEX DOESN’T LEAD TO INCREASED HAPPINESS By Shilo ReaCountless research and self-help books claim that having more sex will lead to increased happiness, based on the common finding that those having more sex are also happier. However, there are many reasons why one might observe this positive relationship between sex and happiness. Being happy in the first place, for example, might lead someone to have more sex (what researchers call ‘reverse causality’), or… Read more

You don’t have to be a saint to want to draw closer to God or have more confidence in what he wants for your life. Spiritual direction is an important ministry that helps people at every stage of the spiritual walk draw closer to God and have more confidence in his will for their lives.  In fact, the Church acknowledges the incredible value of spiritual direction and encourages anyone who is serious about their spiritual walk to seek a competent,… Read more

New research shows that doctors regularly diagnose patients as “depressed” when they complain about marital and relationship problems.  The problem is, being sad about a bad marriage isn’t depression, and anti-depressants can’t treat marital woes. From PsychCentral New research finds that psychiatrists nearly always respond with prescriptions for antidepressants when clients complain of bad marriages. The medical definition of depression does not support the assumption that people struggling with their marriage or other domestic issues are depressed and require antidepressants, said Dr. Jonathan M. Metzl,… Read more

A guest blog by Pastoral Solutions Institute clinical counseling associate, Dave McClow, M.Div., LMFT, LISW. A 13-year-old boy, Peter, was anxious, even compulsive, melting down whenever his parents asked something of him, especially to get off his iPhone or iPad and re-engage in the human race–specifically, his family life.  I know this is not extremely uncommon.  I was working primarily with the mother, who was having difficulty engaging her husband.  He seemed too busy, and she hesitated to bother him.  Having low… Read more

I was honored to be asked for input on a terrific article by Marisa Sandora at For Her on this painful topic.  Here’s a sample. So how can those of us in this situation try to convince our non-practicing spouse to attend church services? “The same way we get our spouse to do anything,” says author and therapist Dr. Gregory Popcak. “We explain how important it is, we insist that we be taken seriously, and we refuse to let it… Read more

From PsychCentral. A new study finds that attendance of religious services by young people is associated with a reduction in viewing pornography over time. The study findings appear in the Journal of Adolescence. “We were able to determine that there is a barrier effect at play wherein religious social control encourages adolescents to view less pornography over time,” said Kyler Rasmussen, lead author of the study and a Ph.D. student in the University of Calgary’s Department of Psychology. “This increase in pornography consumption… Read more

Holy Apostles College and Seminary announced today that their hiring committee has unanimously approved Dr. Greg Popcak to serve as the Chair of the Marriage and Family Concentration in their Master of Pastoral Studies (MAPS) program. The MAPS program is a fully accredited, online masters degree program intended to prepare individuals who wish to serve the faithful as pastoral counselors, marriage and family life ministers, spiritual directors, and other ministry professionals.  In addition to teaching courses in the program, Dr…. Read more

This is not a political blog, nor is it about to become one, but I have seen so many comments lately about what Catholics “must” do in this next election and it seems to me that every single one of these posts is missing an obvious point. Once Upon A Time… I once had a conversation with a prominent bishop in which I expressed my frustration that he and his brother bishops were not more strenuously and publicly opposing Catholic… Read more

Beginning Monday, July, 11, 2016, Dr. John and Mrs. Claire Grabowski, members of the Pontifical Council for the Family, will join More2Life Radio with Dr. Greg and Lisa Popcak as regular guest contributors. More2Life Radio More2Life, a call-in program that applies St. John Paul the Great’s dynamic Theology of the Body to challenges of everyday life, is hosted by Dr. Greg and Lisa Popcak, authors of over 20 popular books and the directors of The Pastoral Solutions Institute, an internationally-recognized Catholic counseling practice.  More2Life airs M-F at Noon (Eastern)… Read more

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