What does it mean to be a Catholic man? How does a Catholic man love? Why is fatherhood, fully understood, so crucial for every man?read more
Nineteen pastors, faith leaders and men in various vocations have come together with Washington (DC) Area Coalition of Men’s Ministries and The Washington Times to publish just in time for Father’s Day a special report entitled, “The Power of Prayer in Men’s Lives, Character and Leadership.”read more
Students across Sydney Catholic schools were recently privileged to experience an empowering presentation by the ‘Dynamic Deacon”.read more
Conferences and faith-based groups are helping men know, defend, and live their Catholic faith.read more
Prayer is both the gift of grace and a response to God’s invitation to covenant relationship as a married couple. Prayer allows husbands and wives to walk humbly before God in the obedience of faith—it is listening to the voice of God and allowing that voice to change their lives and shape their marriages. Prayer draws them deeply into God’s heart so that every day they recommit themselves to a personal relationship of love and intimacy with Him.read more
In his Letter to the Ephesians Saint Paul writes, “Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ” (Ephesians 5:21). Later he adds, quoting from Genesis 2, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh” (Ephesians 5:31).read more
“Both men and women look to Christ for spiritual growth,” Deacon Burke-Sivers said, “but they are uniquely different. They have a complimentarity and they have different gifts.” The deacon believes that it is Christ the servant who should be at the heart of a man’s spirituality. “Men are called to serve [as heads of their families],” he explained, “not because men are better than women, but because they are called to lead and serve their families.”read more
I developed the idea for the series while attempting to answer the questions, “What does it mean to be a man in today’s society?” and “How does contemporary culture speak to men about truth, faith, and the meaning of life?” I quickly realized that secularization, radical individualism and moral relativism were eroding the heart and soul of our spiritual lives as men.read more
The effect of sin through time is revealed in the experiences and attitudes of a so-called “enlightened” culture, which manipulates truth and misuses freedom to such an extent that objective truth has now become subjective and authentic freedom relative, both looking inward toward the self and
away from the Creator.
Why did Jesus have to die?
God wanted to show us, once and for all, that despite our sin He loves us and wants to save us. “By embracing in His human heart the Father’s love for men,” Jesus showed us that by freely choosing to do the Father’s will, by freely choosing what is good, what is true, what is beautiful, that even suffering and death cannot overpower God’s love for us.read more
Today’s magnificent solemnity of the Assumption of Mary into heaven began back in the Garden of Eden. In God’s mind from all eternity, when He decided to create beings made in His image and likeness, and fill them with the gift of His life-giving love, it is within a woman’s being–within her heart and soul–where His love first established a foundation and home. The spirituality of a woman is rooted in the fact that she is the heart of love and through her special and unique relationship with the Holy Spirit (as one who gives life), a woman is truly the example of what it means to be fully human.read more
Shortly after our twins were born, I spent one of my many sleepless nights thinking about how my life had changed since the day I met my wife. How I had abandoned the thought of entering religious life; how I moved across country, leaving the only home I had ever known on the East Coast of the United States; how entering into a life-long commitment of loving communion and intimacy in marriage had changed my relationship with God; and not really having an appreciation at how four young children can – all at the same time – exhaust me to the point of numbness, make me mad enough to pull out what little hair I have left, make me laugh until I cry, and fill me with so much love and joy that I can barely keep my heart in my chest.read more
God is love. These three simple words describe the most basic and fundamental reality of all creation.read more
When my wife Colleen and I wee married, we made a permanent decision to love – to give ourselves to each other freely and completely. On our wedding day, through the gift of grace, we entered into a profoundly intimate and life-giving relationship in communion with the Lord. On that day, with the help of Christ, we established a strong foundation upon which to build our married life.read more
When I think of my mother’s life, I can’t help but draw parallels to the life of Christ. Our Lord was born humble and poor in a manger. When going through my mother’s files, we came across her birth certificate where we learned that my mother was born in an “almshouse,” which, in those days, was the equivalent of a homeless shelter.read more
From the 1600s, when the first black people in America were enslaved by white people, until the mid-1900s, black parents strove to open doors for their children, to create opportunities for them to succeed despite the seemingly insurmountable barriers of racial oppression and poverty. Black families strove to lift a veil of ignorance from a society that held them down, condemned them to slavery, and denied them educational opportunities, thus limiting them to working as unskilled, cheap laborers. Yet, in the face of tremendous adversity, black nuclear families remained together; as late as 1960, 78 percent of black families were headed by married couples.read more
Why is Pope Pius XII so Vehemently Attacked Today? The defamatory allegations against the Church and Pope Pius XII can be traced back to left-wing German writer Rolf Hochhuth’s 1963 play, The Deputy. In this play, Hochhuth–a former member of the Hitler Youth movement–criticized the Pope for being silent and portrayed his silence as cold indifference. The Deputy “was highly polemical, claiming that Pius XII’s concern for Vatican finances left him indifferent to the destruction of European Jewry.” Even though the play was fiction, many took it as fact.read more
Pope John Paul II, one of the greatest popes in the history of the Church, who in future ages will be known as Pope John Paul the Great, has left this life on earth to live forever in the beatific vision of heaven. It is only fitting that the Holy Father died on a Saturday, a day traditionally dedicated to the memory of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Theotokos, whom he loved so much and to whom he dedicated his pontificate. Saturday was also the Vigil of the Feast of the Divine Mercy, established by Pope John Paul II for the second Sunday in the Octave of Easter, to celebrate the rich and tender mercy of God the Father made visible in and through the person of Jesus Christ.read more
Pope John Paul II, in his encyclical letter Evangelium Vitae, states that “human life, as a gift of God, is sacred and inviolable. . . The meaning of life is found in giving and receiving love, and, in this light, human sexuality and procreation reach their true and full significance” (no.81). This deeply profound and pregnant insight represents a compendium of the Church’s teaching on human sexuality and sacramental marriage.read more
Christmas is truly the genesis of Christian evangelization in the world precisely because Jesus’ birth is the inaugural Eucharistic event of our faith. The same Jesus Christ–God’s Living Word who was incarnate in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary and was born in a stable in Bethlehem–gives himself to us Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Most Blessed Sacrament of the Eucharist. As we gaze upon the child Jesus in the manger and as we receive him in Holy Communion, let us be ever mindful of our mission to be witnesses to God’s life-giving love in the world.read more
The Spirit of the Lord is upon us! Pentecost is the time that we celebrate our Lord’s gift of the Holy Spirit to His Church. The desire and work of the Spirit is to transform us so that we may become living testaments to the Risen Christ. The Spirit, then, by His transforming power makes the Mystery of Christ present to us here and now, in our everyday lives and through the sacraments.read more
Heidi: What does it mean to be ordained a diaconate? What made you become one?
Deacon Harold: A bishop has two basic roles: to facilitate communion within the Body of Christ centered in the sacramental life of the Church, and to evangelize—to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ to the world. Since the bishop can’t do all of this by himself, he has priests and deacons who serve as his two arms, so to speak.read more
The Catholic contribution to male spirituality was relatively sparse until the 1990s when, sparked largely by the success of the Protestant Promise Keepers movement, interest in strengthening the faith of men and helping them to deepen their relationship with God—while increasing their knowledge of the Catholic faith through apologetics and catechesis—began to rise. Today, the resurgent Catholic men’s movement has yielded a steadily growing number of conferences, books, study programs, prayer groups and several male-oriented Catholic television series. Much of the Catholic literature has focused on fatherhood but recent works have broadened the spectrum, embracing a more holistic approach to male spirituality.read more
In 1571, in preparation for battle against the Turkish navy, Pope Saint Pius V ordered all of the churches in the world to begin the Forty Hours Devotion, with public processions and recitation of the Rosary. As we look to our own day, there is no question whatsoever that the Rosary must be the weapon of choice in our spiritual battle for purity and holiness. With the Rosary in hand—as the chief servants of our wives and children, as well as the Church and the culture (see Ephesians 5:21-30)—we must protect and defend the dignity of marriage and family life against an ever-advancing culture of death. We live in a world of eclipse, in a world consumed by a darkness whose far-reaching shadows are cast across the threshold of family life. Our only hope for salvation is in God’s mercy and infinite love. By reflecting on the mysteries of our salvation with the heart of the Blessed Mother in the Rosary, we bear witness in a convincing manner to the victory of God’s love over the power of evil in ourselves and in the world.read more
We’ve lost the moral compass that was once a part of our country’s ethos. This is due to a variety of factors: the sexual revolution of the ’60s and ’70s, no-fault divorce, absent fathers, dependence on government and, certainly, the legalization of abortion.
The black community has been particularly hard hit. When I was a kid, there was a television show about a black family called Good Times [1974-79]. It reflected the undaunted determination of black families to stick together despite challenges they faced in the post-slavery era of our country’s history.read more
The “not guilty” verdict in the George Zimmerman trail for the death of Trayvon Martin has unleashed a firestorm of criticism regarding gun violence, stirred deep emotions over the enduring legacy of racism in America, and spawned senseless acts of retaliatory violence. Without question, racism did play a role, in that Mr. Zimmerman profiled Mr. Martin as a “person of color” in the “wrong” neighborhood at the “wrong” time. If Mr. Zimmerman had significant safety concerns or thought that Mr. Martin was acting suspiciously, he should have called the police (which he did) and then went about his business as the police investigated. I know what that feels like, because it happened to me back in 1990. The police officer treated me like a criminal until he found out I went to Notre Dame, which all of a sudden made my being black OK in his eyes. My point is this: if Mr. Martin were white, Mr. Zimmerman would have most likely ignored him and the incident would never have occurred.read more
In the days before global positioning systems, Mapquest, and Google Earth, men were stereotyped as reluctant to ask for directions. You know the scene: a couple is driving somewhere and, unable to find their destination, the wife turns to her husband and says, “Honey, maybe we should stop and ask for directions.”read more