Couples often emerge from their “engaged encounters” aglow with the prospect of living out the procreative and unitive meaning of marriage—one admirable effect of John Paul II’s theology of the body. But beyond the romance at the start of a marriage lies something more profound: the fruits of a lifetime spent in self-gift.
For American Catholics, the last decade—marked by scandal, cover-ups, and fierce division—oft seems the worst of times. But it’s arguable that 1976 marked the low point. That year, the battle lines for the soul of the American Church were being drawn. We’re still reeling from the effects.
Benedict XVI’s historic visit to the United Kingdom in 2010 was supposed to fail. Instead, the pope drew huge crowds and even made the British establishment take notice. How did he do it? By quietly pointing to Jesus Christ—an approach every apologist can imitate.
Can anything good come from the Age of Technology? (Pace, Mr. Check.) The Holy Father thinks so. And so do a lot of Catholics, who are finding that a wide array of communications means that there are almost no barriers to evangelization—as long as we don’t become so enamored of the means that we lose sight of the end.
"Let us then not be ashamed to confess the Crucified. Be the cross our seal, made with boldness by our fingers on our brow and in everything; over the bread we eat and the cups we drink, in our comings and in goings out; before our sleep, when we lie down and when we awake; when we are travelling, and when we are at rest."
~ St. Cyril of Jerusalem in his "Catecheses" (xiii, 36), on the sign of the cross, a practice familiar to Christians in the second century and which had passed into a gesture of benediction by the fourth century, as many quotations from the Fathers show