September 2, 2018
What is the appropriate response finding to such a terrific evil planted in the institution founded by Christ to stand against this exact evil? How do we respond when looking upon these wicked men who go about in the light as though they will guide us in the ways of holiness while in the dark they go about their awful, pernicious deeds?
Where can we go from here? Many are furious and disgusted with the whole affair, as well as ashamed and disappointed with the Church. If those are your feelings, I am right there with you. I feel all those same things but most of all, I’m angry.
In all of this, we look to God for guidence in our anger and power in healing.
August 21, 2018
I am not sounding some apocalyptic horn announcing this the worst age. Every age, every generation has its struggles. We can just look to Paul’s letter today, “Brothers and Sisters, watch carefully how you live, not as foolish but as wise, making the most of the opportunity, because the days are evil.”
The evil we face today is subtle, confusing, and hard to pin down. That Struggle is the struggle with meaninglessness, and our young people are losing. 54% of young people considered themselves lonely, and suicide is now the third leading cause of death in young people between the ages of 10 and 24… about 4,600 kids in the U.S. each year.
What are we to do?
July 22, 2018
If we didn’t enjoy, at least in some shallow way, the iPhone’s ability to distract us for hours on end from the real world, from facing ourselves, we wouldn’t buy them and invest our whole identity in that platform. If we didn’t believe sports were the root of happiness, we wouldn’t sacrifice every second of our life running our kids from school sports to travel sports to dance to whatever.
I will tell you this for sure, none of those things will bring you joy- ever, no matter much time you put in or how successful you are, no matter the popularity and attention it brings you. In fact, in a horrible twist, the more we pour our identity into these things, no matter what they are, the emptier we become- because they have no power to give life!
Today, we bustle about like sheep without a shepherd. We must let the true shepherd, Jesus Christ, lead us into the wilderness daily to be refreshed, that he can give focus, energy and direction to everything we do.
July 17, 2018
The Blackfeet are predominately Catholic, and overwhelmingly Christian besides- in other words they are a faithful people. Yet they face dire poverty with 70% unemployment. Alcohol and drugs have wreaked havoc upon their people with a disproportionate amount of young deaths, as well as ½ the children in Browning being born addicted.
Where is God’s grace in this place? Where is he when his people so badly need him? Why does he not come to their aid? These were some of the questions on our young people’s hearts as the trip began- and on my own heart. Yet as we came to know the Blackfeet people and saw their faith, suddenly Jesus seemed to be everywhere, and different questions arose in our hearts.
July 3, 2018
Our ten year reunion is an interesting moment. The gospel, which I think is fitting, is a meditation on Death and suffering: what do they tell us about living a meaningful life?
June 6, 2018
This Sunday is the feast of Corpus Christi, the body and Blood of Christ. There are multiple layers to this feast, each of which reveals an ever deeper and greater mystery. This feast, when all is said and done, concerns the humiliation of the eternal Son of God.
So, we must understand what exactly Jesus is doing here- without trying to level out what is mysterious. Because I must be clear: this is mysterious- the eucharist is truly the body and blood of Christ, it is not an empty sign, it's not just a symbol to remind us WE are the body of Christ.
May 14, 2018
We can imagine: not only will our intellect constantly penetrating the mysteries of God, the great heavenly feast in the book of Revelation will be brought to life- imagine perfect, heavenly food, in overflowing abundance. Will our favorite activities still exist on the new earth? I don’t see why we will not ski powder every day or have perfect trails with perfect dirt for mountain biking and stunning rivers with huge fish surrounded by pristine mountains.
Imagine the music in heaven: the greatest composers in history working with the greatest musicians, all in peak form with their minds unhindered by any ulterior motives and their work unhindered by time restraints and poverty. Imagine the art and the conversations, the greatest minds of all time to converse with. Most of all we will have true rest- peace. We will not be occupied with the cares of the world or the stress of day to day life.
May 3, 2018
In this fallen world, we all face incredible suffering, sometimes what seems like unbearable, deeply unjust suffering. In these moments we must remain on the vine, take up our cross with Christ and let him strengthen us, or we will inevitably isolate, grow bitter, and eventually despair. We must remain in Christ if we want to weather the storm of this life- not only to weather it but to be joyful in the midst of it.
April 25, 2018
After 250 years of fighting relentlessly for the common good, for the idea that there is indeed goodness and truth, we have abandoned that struggle and chosen instead to just tolerate each other. Of fear of the tension that comes with diversity has crushed us, sent us into hiding. As a result, our faith is privatized, and we are afraid to bring it to bear in the world.
In this we can learn a lesson from our jr. high kids. It’s refreshing how willing young people are to offend someone with a blunt question. Now, is there often a lack of prudence, and even at times plainly inappropriate? Yes, but there is something raw and good there, we must risk offending people in the pursuit of the truth, and we also must be willing to be offended! Political correctness has robbed us of this courage.
April 10, 2018
Gregory the Great tells us, “The unbelief of Thomas was worth more to us than the faith of the others who believed.” If we make that great act of humility, humbling our sinful pride and coming before Christ, we find ourselves transformed in faith as Thomas was transformed, as all the saints were transformed. And it is then that we have the capacity and the courage to bestow God’s mercy upon others.