Tagged: Gaudete et Exsultate

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Theosis, Pastoral Accompaniment, and the Law of Gradualism

Back in January the Lord put on my mind and heart an idea for a theological essay that he wanted me to write. I don’t say that lightly here. Never before has something burned within me until I wrote it...

Masks Are Not a Symbol of Fear

Two recent viral videos that circulated on Twitter recently underscored just how divisive mask-wearing has become. The videos themselves might elicit embarrassment-by-proxy and certainly aren’t reflective of everyone who chooses not to wear a mask, but these videos are emblematic...

Who Knows?

Those who work in the world of finance and investments are very familiar with this disclaimer that appears on countless documents and presentations: “Past performance is not a guarantee of future results.” Investment professionals have an ethical obligation to ensure...

The New Americanism, Part Five: Activity

In the late 19th century, Pope Leo XIII saw in the American Church a tendency to value the active life over receptivity to the Holy Spirit. In his 1899 letter to the faithful in America, Testem benevolentiae, Leo identified this...

Be Perfect

The gospel reading today ends with Jesus summing up his great Sermon on the Mount by saying, “So be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect.” We can easily misunderstand what this passage means and leave feeling like Jesus...

False accusations, not the Extraordinary Form, are toxic

The National Catholic Reporter recently published an opinion piece entitled “The Latin Mass becomes a cult of toxic tradition,” written by Zita Ballinger Fletcher. In the piece, the author attempts to show, based on “facts and personal experience,” that the...

“My power is made perfect in weakness”

When the Church takes up someone’s cause for sainthood, one of the things they look for is heroic virtue. Drawing from Pope Benedict XIV and St. Thomas Aquinas, the Catholic Encyclopedia defines “heroic virtue” as “…a habit of good conduct...

What did Pope Francis say about rigid priests?

In an address to bishops in Madagascar, Pope Francis warns his audience not to let the fear of not enough priests justify them being undiscerning in priestly formation and accept men into the priesthood who aren’t striving for holiness. He...

Colleen Carroll Campbell: Finding Perfection in God

The Heart of Perfection: How the Saints Taught Me to Trade My Dream of Perfect for God’s, Colleen Carroll Campbell’s new book, correctly diagnoses a spiritual problem afflicting millions and millions of Catholics, especially in the United States where rugged...

Where Peter Is – LIVE (sort of, not really)

I was asked to give a talk about Pope Francis at the Catholic Information Center in Grand Rapids, Michigan. While I’m only one member of the WPI team and this isn’t an official WPI event, I wanted to let you...

Grace and Mercy Is Everything

What is grace, and how exactly does grace “work”? I don’t want to suggest to anyone that I have the full answer, but over the last few years, Pope Francis’ theology has reminded the Church, in important ways, about what...

Are You Called to Social Media?

Bishop Robert Barron has a wonderfully fresh perspective on social media and its use. See here and here. He criticizes the technology sharply, but he also embraces its more positive characteristics, even to the point of celebrating it as a...

We Are Called to Be Perfect

There is a dangerous attitude prevalent in the world that suggests we are completely responsible for our own transformation. Whatever we become, whatever we achieve, it is because of our human efforts–exclusively. In a Christian context, we call this Pelagianism....

The Joy of Holiness

Does God want us to be happy? Does God want us to feel happy? To answer the question, first let’s take a look at Scripture. Father Lawrence Boadt, in his book Reading the Old Testament, shows how the biblical texts,...

Holiness isn’t about trying harder

I’ve noticed that “growing in holiness” is usually presented by popular Catholic media as something like “We just gotta pray more and try harder, then the Lord will make us holier.” As if becoming holy will take a lot of...

Ignatius: A Brief Introduction to the Theology of Pope Francis

Finally, we should not neglect the importance of Francis being the first Jesuit pope. In many respects, it appears Francis’ Jesuit background has had an important influence on Pope Francis’ theology. Given the Jesuits lengthy history and its varying roles...

Argentina: A Brief Introduction to the Theology of Pope Francis

Guardini is not the only influence on Pope Francis, of course.  Pope Francis’ theology seems heavily influenced by his pastoral work in Argentina. That is to say, Pope Francis’ theology is pastoral in nature, and it is also shaped by...

Romano Guardini: A Brief Introduction to the Theology of Pope Francis

While well-educated and academically trained, it can be said that Pope Francis does not belong to any one “school.” He is not strictly an “Augustinian” or a “Thomist,” though he cites Aquinas quite liberally. However, one person to whom we...

A Brief Introduction to the Theology of Pope Francis

In God’s gift of faith, a supernatural infused virtue, we realize that a great love has been offered us, a good word has been spoken to us, and that when we welcome that word, Jesus Christ the Word made flesh,...

The Lord Speaks in Silence: A Reflection on Prayer

“Holiness consists in a habitual openness to the transcendent.” When I was younger, I often thought of prayer as more or less a mental exercise. I don’t even think I called it prayer, but it was about the closest thing...

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