Catholic Answers Blog

September 23, 2013

In my last blog I began to investigate the claims of Frank Zindler, former editor of American Atheist Magazine, who believes that the office of the pope is really an extension of the Pater Patrum (Father of Fathers) who presided over the Roman cult of Mithras.

I’ve already addressed the weakness of Zindler’s claim that the Chair of Peter once belonged to the supposed Mithraic...

September 23, 2013

One of my favorite films is The Mission (1986), directed by Roland Joffé, screenplay by Robert Bolt. Bolt also wrote the screenplay for another favorite, A Man for All Seasons...

September 20, 2013

When the Archangel Gabriel visited Mary and declared unto her that she was called to be the Mother of God, as we see recorded in Luke 1, her response would become the cause of the spilling of a whole lot of ink over the centuries: “How shall this happen, since I know not man?” (v. 34, Douay Rheims, Confraternity Edition).

For Catholics this is an indication of Mary’s vow of perpetual virginity. It’s really quite simple. If Mary and Joseph were just an ordinary couple embarking on a...

September 18, 2013

Some people balk at the use of liberal and conservative in a religious context. They argue that these are political terms only, and that questions of religious belief and practice are too varied, too nuanced, to capture with broad-stroke labels.

I’m not one of those people. Words can have different senses in different contexts, so there should be no problem re-purposing them from one to the next. And, sure, I agree that beliefs can be complex and so labels are...

September 17, 2013

Why do Catholics teach that Mary was a virgin throughout her life when the Bible clearly says that Jesus had brothers? Ever been asked that?

Let me offer four reasons:

1. The Meaning of Brother

The first thing to understand is that the term brother (Gk. adelphos) has a broader meaning than uterine brothers. It can mean a biological brother, but it can also mean an extended relative, or even a spiritual brother.

Take Genesis 13:8 ...