Mary Magdalene, Doubting Thomas, and What It Means to "See the Lord"

Mary Magdalene, Doubting Thomas, and What It Means to "See the Lord"

At the end of John’s Gospel, the tensive relationship between shock and transformation is operative, beginning especially with Jesus’ appearance to Mary Magdalene.

Catholic School Administrators and Faculty: A Resource

Catholic School Administrators and Faculty: A Resource

(Check out this resource for Catholic school administrators and faculty)

By clearly articulating “what matters most,” we can more clearly see where we are, where we hope to be, and how we get from one to the other. As Catholic high school administrators and faculty, reading this book together will help you to find space and inspiration to talk about the most important things about your school and your students.

Breaking News: Teens and Their Parents Have Meaningful Conversations

Breaking News: Teens and Their Parents Have Meaningful Conversations

“I really feel that I am always moving from one event to another constantly. I fail to be in the moment and appreciate where I am. I am caught up in the moment and I don’t make true connections with people. When I am rushing I start to interpret people’s actions and how they should show their love. You said ‘deep listening does not just happen’ and to make time for deep listening I need to become practiced in taking time and practice giving time. I may be a busy person but the reason why I am not making deep connections with other people is because I am not giving them my time.”

– Allison, HS Junior

Long After the Prodigal Son's Return

Long After the Prodigal Son's Return

We love stories of a tragic fall and sudden return. When the homecoming occurs, the story is complete. It is, after all, the story of the Prodigal Son: the beloved younger child who went to the distant country and then came home again. That is the whole story, or, so it seems.

Naughty and Nice Lists for Preaching on Trinity Sunday

Naughty and Nice Lists for Preaching on Trinity Sunday

I teach a course on “The Trinity and Christian Salvation” to masters students at Notre Dame. My students include lay ministers, seminarians, deacons, teachers, and inquiring adult and young adult Catholics of all kinds. After we have progressed through our studies a bit, I bring up the issue of preaching on “Trinity Sunday”. The immediately get it––they have all experienced mostly bad homilies on this day above all days. I give them a chance then to come up with a “Naughty List” (things to avoid on Trinity Sunday) and a “Nice List” (what to include or focus on when preaching on Trinity Sunday). Here are some of the most common responses…

A Pilgrimage of Sacred Art

A Pilgrimage of Sacred Art

The sacred art of this world is not eternal, but it calls us to what is. This is never clearer than when art invites us to contemplate the “last things” in Christian hope. In relation to our end in God, all of life is a pilgrimage that begins in the fount of baptism.

Priests: Formed as Men of Communion

Priests: Formed as Men of Communion

The formation of priests has received significant attention in recent months. This attention is due in no small part to issues surrounding the most recent revelations of abuse in the Church, though the work of continually reforming priestly formation is not solely a response to this crisis.

The Chronicles of Narnia: A Spiritual Journey

In a world grown cold without wonder, how do you reimagine the drama and joy of Christianity? For C.S. Lewis, the answer was to invite us into a different world that would help us see this one with fresh eyes. That world was Narnia, and when Lewis wrote that world into existence, he created more than a story — he created the possibility for a moral and spiritual journey.

“The Chronicles of Narnia” span seven books, each a narrative unto itself, that come together to form a larger whole. Lewis started writing these stories with “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” (published in 1950) because he had this image in his mind of a faun standing next to a lamppost, and he wanted to tell a story about that. In the course of writing that first story, it soon became a Christian story because he imagined what kind of redeemer a world like the one he was imagining would need.

Read more at OSV Newsweekly

Love Is Always Conditional

We want to say that love is unconditional. It seems right. It is equal parts comforting and challenging. It is comforting because if I am loved, then there is nothing I can do to lose that. It is challenging because in order to love, I have to will to be untroubled by obstacles. We do not want to say love is conditional because we fear submitting love to the twisted logic of relationship terrorism: if you do not meet my demands, I deprive you of what is good for you, or vice versa. We think of conditions as qualifications and we do not want to attach qualifications to love. So we say love is unconditional. But that is wrong. Love is always conditional.

Read more at Church Life Journal

Saints Should Disturb Us

Saints Should Disturb Us

I read something about St. Catherine of Siena last night that has completely torn apart my existence and forced a sharp examine of conscience. Why? Because the saints--when we really, really dare to see them--are not there first of all to comfort us. They should first disturb us. They work in Christ, who wounds us in order to heal us.

The Wilderness Within: Pope Francis, Moses, and Religious Liberty

The Wilderness Within: Pope Francis, Moses, and Religious Liberty

Retelling the story of the American People as a story that began in the pursuit of liberty, that progresses in seeking this liberty for all, and that shall always be an ongoing project to secure liberty so that dialogue and peace may become its fruits, makes the story of the United States a story of religious liberty.

The Real Work of the Synod of Bishops

The Real Work of the Synod of Bishops

We must, must, must commit ourselves personally, as disciples within our parishes, schools, and homes, to heed the mission of the Gospel and present its beauty to our young people in word and deed. We must become the witnesses who show them God’s love and testify to that love with our lives.

A Better Response to Fr. Jim Martin

A Better Response to Fr. Jim Martin

…I’m still not completely happy with how I’m saying what I’m saying here, but at least I’ve taken some more time to think about than I did in my initial, somewhat impulsive, totally Twitterish intervention. If Fr. Martin reads this or any others who responded critically to my initial intervention, I really do hope he and you will receive a sense of my respect along with my words, because I definitely do intend that.

Google Classroom and the Unintended Consequences of Unintentional Decisions

Google Classroom and the Unintended Consequences of Unintentional Decisions

My wife shared an interesting observation over dinner with friends last weekend. She said that one of the small, daily arguments with our eldest son just stopped this year. Why? Because he switched schools, and unlike the one he attended last year, his new school does not use Google Classroom.

A Short Reflection on Three Home Football Weekends

A Short Reflection on Three Home Football Weekends

…This is of course part of the culture at Notre Dame—the cost for all the extraordinary benefits that the football program affords the university and its community (and they are extraordinary, not only in financial terms but in communal terms also). But the sequence of three straight weekends at the very start of the semester has been, in my view and the view of the students I talked to yesterday, unfair and actually rather cruel to our students. We have not put them in a position to start strong this year and to set a foundation for success. Instead, they’re already behind and playing catch-up. …