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February 23, 2013

If you are not prepared for this Sunday’s first reading (Gen 15:5-12, 17-18), you will probably have a difficult time making sense of it. Your homilist might not discuss it, so I hope this brief explanation will be helpful. It is not a lengthy reading, so we will go all the way through it, splitting it into two parts but hopefully not slaughtering it.

The reading begins straightforward enough:

The Lord God took Abram outside and said, “Look up at the sky and count...

February 15, 2013

Pope Benedict’s renouncement of the papal office has spurred a rash of questions about the purported prophecies of St. Malachy. “Will Benedict’s successor be the last pope?” “Are we headed into a period of great tribulation?” “Will the world end soon?”

The last time we fielded so many such questions at Catholic Answers was about eight years ago, shortly after the death of Blessed John Paul II. This makes sense, because the prophecies in question concern the identities of popes from...

February 6, 2013

Lent is just around the corner. In fact, Ash Wednesday is one week from today. Lent is chosen by many parishes as the ideal time to offer retreats, parish missions, and workshops. If you are planning such an event, I have a suggestion: Invite a Catholic Answers speaker to give talks on Vatican II and the Catechism. Doing so could have the added bonus of a plenary indulgence for attendees.

The Apostolic Penitentiary, which issues indulgences...

February 3, 2013

I recently got a call at Catholic Answers from a woman who had fallen away from the Church many years ago but had come back home after watching EWTN and listening to Catholic Answers Live. Sadly, though, she had been told by a deacon at her parish that she could not receive the Eucharist or even go to confession because she had gotten remarried outside the Church after her first marriage ended in divorce. Before she could be fully reconciled with God and the Church...