What I Saw In Bethlehem Yesterday (A Photo Essay)

Bethlehem_Advent_2014

Christmas is coming to the City of David.*

I’ll be honest with you and tell you that yesterday was a very emotional day. And when I say that, I mean emotional in a good way. There were tears, surely. But they were tears of awe, wonder, and joy.

Our pilgrimage wound it’s way through security points and ventured into the City of David. What follows is a little photo essay of what we saw there. [Read more…]

For Prayers Such As These For Advent

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Candle flame by Jon Sullivan

Before I became a Catholic, I had no idea what Advent meant. It was just another one of those weird, mysterious, Catholic words for a time in the year before Christmas. Nowadays, I appreciate it more because I understand that it commemorates the time when the people of Israel yearned for the Messiah. [Read more…]

A Few Thoughts On Veteran’s Day

 

It’s the feast of St. Martin of Tours, and since he was a soldier of some renown it is fitting that his feast coincides with what we celebrate as Veteran’s Day. I have an affinity for soldiers. At Mass when we say the words of the centurion, “Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof,” we are the centurion.  [Read more…]

Because Joseph of Cupertino Could Fly

—Feast of St. Joseph of Cupertino

A few years ago, the world was held in thrall by Stephen Hawking’s declaration that there is no need for a Creator for the universe to have been formed. The giant had spoken, succinctly, and confidently. If you are like me, you haven’t read his new book, but you probably saw the interview with Larry King.

One of my take-away’s from the interview? Stephen Hawking gushing over his experience of being weightless. He got to take a flight on one of those NASA planes that climbs parabolically so at the “top”, for a short while, zero-G is achieved. He evidently was thrilled to be weightless. [Read more…]

Because I Don’t Deserve The Graces That Have Been Bestowed Upon Me, Including Folks Reading This Blog

Smith Corona Typewriter!

You’ll probably want to stop checking in on my blog now, seeing as I don’t have any deep thoughts to offer on whatever the various concerns of the day might be. Yes, you would be justified in removing my blog from your RSS feed, your blogroll, etc.

I really don’t deserve to have folks reading my thoughts at all, when you get right down to it. Joe Six-Pack? Who aspires to such a pedestrian title? [Read more…]

A Poem on St. John the Baptist’s Day

 

"St. John the Baptist Preaching Before Herod," Hans Fries, 1514.

“St. John the Baptist Preaching Before Herod,” Hans Fries, 1514.

Happy Birthday to St. John the Baptist! Here is a little poem I found written by John Keble in honor of this, the greatest of all men. [Read more…]

The Quest For The Origins Of The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity

Adoration of the Trinty, by Albrecht Durer

What is the deal with celebrating Trinity Sunday? After all, isn’t every Mass a celebration of our Triune God? So why a special Sunday dedicated as a feast to God, in three persons?

That question is why I picked up my torch and started on a quest to find the origins of this feast day. In truth, an amicable tussle with a friend of mine is what led me on the search to solve this riddle. Want to come along? [Read more…]

“On Reproof,” A Poem By St. Ephrem of Syria, Deacon, and Doctor of the Church

I came upon these lines while researching St. Ephrem the Syrian, the Deacon, and Doctor of the Church, whose feast day is today.

As it turns out, St. Ephrem wrote almost all of his homilies in verse or as hymns that could be sung to the same tunes that the Arians were singing at the time. What follows are words of wisdom he offers for us to consider as we journey along The Way.

On Reproof by St. Ephrem the Syrian

Let us be builders of our own minds
into temples suitable for God. [Read more…]

St. John of the Cross On What Ails The Catholic Blog-O-Sphere

Last week was a pretty embarrassing one in the parish of St. Blogs. It was enough to make me consider if continuing to blog was a worthwhile use of my time. There are other things to do, you know. I have children to raise, a wife to love, tasks to be performed on my day job, and honey-do lists that are a mile long.

Yep, I seriously thought of throwing in the towel . [Read more…]

For Your Saintly Quote of the Week

 

“The times are never so bad that a good man cannot live in them.”

—St. Thomas More