Jesus the Dishwasher

I am one of the freshmen fortunate enough to have landed a job my first semester of college. I started working at the bakery two weeks before school started, and I love the job! One day, as I was sweeping the flour-and-crumb-covered floor, my joy poured out of me in a silent prayer of thanksgiving.

Five minutes later, as if God was saying, “let’s see how sincere you really are.” I was sent to the most dreaded place in the bakery – the dish room.

A Masked Mess

We put on this tough exterior in order to try and hide what is really going on. We try to broadcast something completely different from what’s going on in the inside. We think that if someone knew what we really felt, what we really experienced, what we’ve really done, then we would be cast out. That no one could possibly love us.

Misleading Main Characters

When the main characters shift in my life, I often find myself scrambling to justify my “right” to be the main character. I find a way that I am “more than” someone else — more interesting, more stressed, more Christ-like, more anything. I find ways to make myself the center again. This mentality is so easy to get caught up in. I spend so much time justifying my “right,” I forget that we all have the fire of a main character in us. My perception of others is all in relation to the false, puffed up version of myself.

God Wants YOU.

We NEED to give Him the shame. We need to give Him the relationships that we totally messed up in. We need to give Him the part of us that feels empty, that doubts. We need to give Him the guilt we carry on our backs. We need to give him the dumb things we’ve said that continue to haunt us. He wants it, He wants all of us… He wants you.

Why I Tell My Sins to a Person: In Defense of Confession

Every couple of weeks I solemnly walk into a small room where another person is sitting. It kinda feels like a closet, kinda looks like the smallest grandmotherly-parlor-sitting-room you’ve ever seen (complete with appropriate seating and decoration).

We sit there, me and this other person, and have a nice little conversation that consists of me telling them all the things I’ve done wrong recently. It’s a varied, and unexciting list that doesn’t change nearly as often as I change the tone of voice I use to disguise myself. (Don’t judge me. You know you’ve done it too.)

Help Me to Heaven: A Guy’s Perspective on Modesty

It’s safe to say that most guys feel the same way. You women are so breathtakingly beautiful that it can be very difficult to pay attention to anything else when you’re in the general vicinity. I once slammed my car into the garage door because I was mindlessly gazing at my beautiful neighbor on her mountain bike.

How to Slap Shame in the Face

Editor’s Note: The author of this blog has asked to remain anonymous. “Guilt is feeling bad about what you’ve done. Shame is feeling bad about who you are.” I was listening to a podcast when I heard this sentiment. I was floored. As someone who has struggled with shame for a long time, I had […]

Worth the Fight: The 5 Secrets to Staying Pure

Q: I was wondering if you have any advice for guys trying to remain pure. I know a lot of my friends and I have struggled in relationships because we found it so hard to remain pure with all of the pressure around us.

A: Thanks for the email, and I want to affirm you for pursuing purity. Here are a few tips that come to mind:

Which Spring Breaker Are You?

When it comes to this, “what happens on spring break stays on spring break” couldn’t be further from the truth. The decision to abuse alcohol and drugs aren’t just harmful to you and those around you — the consequences can follow you long after your flip-flop tan fades.

Broken Chains: Freedom from Porn is Possible

I don’t know if it was my conscience, the Holy Spirit, or a combination of the two, but in that moment I was reminded of this one issue in my life. I had struggled with pornography for the past year or two. I knew that it was sinful, and several times I had promised myself that I wouldn’t go back to it, but I couldn’t quit.

A Family as Crazy as Mine

Everyone knows the Christmas story and expects to hear it at Mass. You’d have to try really hard to live in America and not know the basics of the Christmas narrative.

But instead of hearing about shepherds scared by angels and a divine baby dressed in swaddling clothes, we hear the genealogy of Jesus all the way from Abraham down to Joseph (Mary’s husband, not the Old Testament Technicolor Dreamcoat guy). This probably leaves more than a few people wondering if maybe the priest messed up and is reading from the wrong book.

Purgatory: Heaven’s Waiting Room

Consider this analogy. Have you ever tried to put a wrinkled dollar bill into a soda machine? You try your best to straighten it out but the machine simply can’t receive it in its wrinkled, tattered state. But if you put in a crisp, new bill, the machine takes it no problem. Purgatory is where all the “wrinkles” are purged and “ironed out.” Remember, the wrinkled dollar is not worth less than the new one it just needs some help.

Put simply, Purgatory means you’ll get to heaven some day, but that you have a few things God has to “iron out” first.

Thank You God: Being the Grateful Leper

We walk into confession as spiritual lepers, wounded and scarred by sin. In the case of mortal sin, we’re even spiritual outcasts of heaven, living outside of the state of grace. But we walk out of Confession as people brought back to life and made new.

If we were to truly recognize what God is doing in us, our reaction would be one of wonder and awe followed by humble gratitude.

Abundant Mercy: How to Overcome the Shame of Sin

When we stand in line waiting to enter the confessional, it’s natural to sometimes feel a little fear, a little anxiousness, a little nervousness. After all, we’re standing in line to speak our sins aloud! Sometimes though, we walk out of the confessional and we might still feel guilty, or ashamed of what we’ve done […]

Shark Week Scares

It’s finally here. The week that the Discovery Channel brings us marathon programming meant to help us better understand sharks. As I write this, a great white shark the size of a Winnebago is chomping a seal in half while guys in windbreakers film on a rocking boat. My favorite part of shark week is […]

One of Us

Sometimes even in the Christian realm, we're segregated in a similar fashion. I recently went to a conference with 25,000 Christians who were on fire for God. It was amazing and one of the most powerful worship experiences I've ever had. However, I think my four friends and I were the only Catholics there.

God's not exclusive. He wants all groups, ethnic circles, social classes, to be brought together as one people, unified in love and faith.

Last week, a non-denominational church launched a campaign called: 'Jesus loves you and your tattoo.' They handed out koozies on the gang-filled streets of Detroit with this message. I love that because it is proclaiming the truth that our God didn't come for the cookie-cutter Christians. He came for everyone . . .

Hello Spring Break . . . Goodbye Dignity?

Life is stressful, right? Between school and work and relationships, it can be exhausting, and Spring Break is the perfect way to blow off some steam and finally relax. And over the next few weeks, countless teens and young adults will make very, very poor decisions … some that they won't remember, and some they won't be able to forget, because they'll regret them for the rest of their lives … all in the name of freedom.

Why Do Catholics Confess Their Sins to a Priest?

Priests can forgive our sins because Jesus has given them that authority through the grace of Holy Orders. With that power, priests can hear and forgive our sins by acting through Christ.

Jesus gave the Church the Sacrament of Reconciliation, also known as Penance or Confession, to allow us to have an intimate conversation with our God through the priest. . . .

Why Do Catholics Confess Their Sins to a Priest?

Priests can forgive our sins because Jesus has given them that authority through the grace of Holy Orders. With that power, priests can hear and forgive our sins by acting through Christ.

Jesus gave the Church the Sacrament of Reconciliation, also known as Penance or Confession, to allow us to have an intimate conversation with our God through the priest. . . .