June 21, 2013

A considerable number of Catholic youths who would never countenance the murder of an unborn child cannot see why two men (or two women) “who love each other,” as they say, should not have the right to marry. If you don’t believe me, then I’m guessing you haven’t spoken recently with a student at one of America’s diocesan high schools about something other than soccer or where he plans to go to college.

It is little wonder that so many teenagers are confused. The whole concept of a...

June 19, 2013
Myth or Messiah?

A small handful of scholars today, and a much larger group of Internet commenters, maintain that Jesus never existed. Proponents of this position, known as mythicists, claim that Jesus is a purely mythical figure invented by the writers of the New Testament (or its later copyists.) In this post I’ll offer the top four reasons (from weakest to strongest) that convince me Jesus of Nazareth was a real person without relying on the Gospel accounts of his life.

4. It is the...

June 19, 2013

In a twist on Robert Frost’s old saw about vers libre poetry, a priest friend of mine once remarked, “Being spiritual but not religious is like playing tennis without a net.”

This strikes me as very apt. There does seem something unsportsmanlike about claiming the consolations of spiritual living without binding oneself to a God or creed. It’s all dessert, no dinner.

And, like eating a gummi bear soufflé every night, it’s not very healthy, either. “Spirituality” (...

June 18, 2013

The Catholic interwebs are abuzz with the news that there is a change being made to the Eucharistic prayers we hear at Mass.

It’s a small but significant change: A specific mention of St. Joseph is being inserted into Eucharistic Prayers II, III, and IV.

(Thanks to Fr. Z for pointing this out and making...

June 18, 2013

I was recently asked:

Could you please explain to me rationally without using [complex] words, and yet using theology, and convince me why I shouldn’t get a tattoo? There’s too much mumbo jumbo on the Internet, and I would truly appreciate finding something concrete and understandable.

I’m afraid that I cannot explain—either with simple, or complex words—why you shouldn’t get a tattoo.

The reason being that, in principle, the Church does not...