Christmas is right around the corner and gift shopping was sooooo 2 weeks ago.
“But the malls are crowded!”
“But everything is so expensive!”
“But I don’t have time to be creative!”
“But where do I find gifts with a hint of Catholic flare?”
We hear you. That’s why we’re electronically swooping in superhero style to save the day for you with this gift guide. You’re welcome. Feel free to send us the cookies you’ll bake with all the time and money you’ll save. And most importantly, have a blessed Advent preparing your heart for Jesus’ birth.
All you have to do is listen to a lot of popular music to hear about marijuana. All you you have to do is watch TV or movies to see marijuana. And just attend a concert if you want to stand around inhaling it secondhand. It’s everywhere. Marijuana is even legal in a couple states and even where it’s not – I know you still see it. It’s a topic that always seems to spark a ton of debate. Is it a sin? Can it be used in moderation, etc? I want to take a step back from the legality Read more [...]
First, we need to be clear here. The Immaculate Conception is not about the conception of Jesus in Mary’s womb. It’s about the conception of Mary in her mother’s womb years before. While Mary was conceived in the normal, human way through her parents (Joachim and Anne), the Immaculate Conception speaks to the fact that Mary was conceived without the stain of original sin.
Yep. Because Friday is the day that Christ made the ultimate sacrifice for us, the Church instructs that we should call this to mind frequently—not just the forty days before Easter. While most of us are familiar with abstaining from meat on Fridays in Lent, we are challenged by the Church to recall the importance of Good Friday throughout the year by making some act of penance each week.
Nicholas was known for his generosity. As tradition goes, he was so selfless that (although he, too, was poor) he helped his likewise poor neighbor support and pay for his daughters’ weddings. Nicholas snuck up to his neighbor’s house at night and dropped a handful of gold coins through the open window so that the eldest daughter could afford to get married. He would later repeat the generous act two more times. From there, the Santa legend grew into what we now know today – stockings, chimneys, a belly like jelly and all that good stuff.
Jesus Himself claims to be God throughout the Gospels as well. Jesus asked the Jews, “Do you say . . . ‘You are blaspheming,’ because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’?” (John 10:36). Calling yourself God when you are not is blasphemy, the worst kind of sin for the Jews. That’s why the Jews wanted to put Him to death . . .
This isn’t just about dating; I think that a lot of us guys have become so afraid of awkwardness that we never take risks. We’re not sure how we might appear if we take a stand for our faith, so we keep silent when the Church is mocked. We know that we’re not perfect ourselves, so we feel too hypocritical to challenge someone else for something that they’re doing or saying that is wrong.
Have you ever thought about what you want to do before you die? Jesus said in John 10:10, “I came that you may have life and have it to the full.” God doesn’t want us to just “get by”; He wants us to really “live” our lives. And since we don’t know when the world is going to end, we should make the most of every day!
That’s where a Bucket List comes in handy (a list of fun things to do before you die). We threw out the question to you on Facebook and Twitter, “What’s the coolest goal on your bucket list?” and we got some fun, hilarious, weird, and Pope-filled answers. Check ‘em out – they make up an awesome Bucket List all together!
Christ Himself told us that nobody knows the day or the hour that He will return to judge the living and dead on earth. Not the Mayans, not a television preacher, and certainly not Ke$ha. This means that tomorrow Christ could show up. Would your soul be ready, or would you wish you had more time? The truth about “living like you are going to die young,” is that we should be living like today is our last day, but realizing that there is eternal life after death. We should be making the most of our lives today – but not through sin, but virtue.
Catholics believe in the personal and final judgments because Christ told us we would be judged for all of our actions and that He, the Good Shepherd, would separate us like sheeps from goats, the good from the bad.
St. John of the Cross said, “On the evening of life, we shall be judged on our love.”
All of our actions here on earth matter because we believe that we were created to spend eternity with God. Therefore the things that we do and don’t do have an effect on our souls. If we don’t choose God on earth, how will we be ready (or willing) to spend eternity loving Him?
Everyone wants to be remembered fondly. Have you ever thought about what kind of legacy you’re leaving behind? The truth is, your legacy is up to you. Many things in life were just handed to you and you can’t change them. Where you were born wasn’t up to you. It’s a part of your story that is already written. But you story isn’t over, and the pen is in your hand. However, our story shouldn’t just be pointing people towards us. It should be pointing people towards God, the true Author of Life.
That’s why it’s so exciting to think about heaven, right? The moment we are free — no more “too fat,” “too short,” or “too skinny.” We’ll never have to worry about bad hair days, annoying wrinkles, or our bellies protruding over our belts after chowing down on Thanksgiving dessert.
In heaven, we’re going to be spiritual beings, floating on white fluffy clouds (and holding baby puppies) . . . Right?
The hike started out great, we literally walked down 500 steps. Then the scary part came. We had to cross over these HUGE boulders with water below us. Now the water wasn’t moving any faster than say the way water would come out of a garden hose but for some reason I became completely paralyzed and my hands and legs were shaking.
I wouldn’t take that first step of faith even though my sisters were lovingly encouraging me along. Eventually, after a lot of convincing, I took the first step . . .
I was once riding in a shuttle-bus with a number of older folks on the way from an airport. They noticed that I was a priest and started asking questions about it. “Do you do all of the priest stuff?” “Yep.” “Even the Confession thing?” “Yeah. All the time.”
One older lady gasped, “Well, I think that that would be the worst. It would be so depressing; hearing all about people’s sins.”
I told them that it was the exact opposite. There is almost no greater place to be than with someone when they are coming back to God . . .
The reality is that if you live out your faith there will probably be some conflict and moments of very awkward silence. Like that moment when your aunt tells you all the things “wrong” with your Church . . . or your condescending cousin drills you on Catholic Church teaching and asks why you so “mindlessly” follow it? Or when your Mom pulls you aside in the kitchen before family dinner and encourages you to avoid talking about certain topics like abortion or politics?
It’s not that shopping is bad. Sales are one of the ways God loves me. I just have to be careful to use the money I have wisely. Do I really need that pair of heels in the same color I already own? Or do I need that throw pillow that spends more time being thrown to the floor than it does on my bed? Probs not.
The truth is that buying more “things” is so silly in the grand scheme of life.
Are you going to see Twilight? (See title for my answer to that question.) My parentals would be thrilled by my wise choice. Maybe yours don’t care. Maybe your mom thinks your “Team Jacob” shirt means you joined your town soccer league. I don’t know. I’m just making stuff up . . . I don’t really know your mom. (I know it’s your grandma who would think that.) I’m not here to approve or disapprove of Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 2. I’m here to say in all honesty that you’d Read more [...]
Catholics take care to honor and bury the dead because St. Paul tells us that we are temples of the Holy Spirit, that God lives in our very bodies and therefore we should honor God with them (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Honoring the body doesn’t stop after the person has died.