The Communist interrogator couldn’t stand it any longer. “Admit it!” he shouted to the priest, “You’re part of a Vatican plot! You’re nothing more than an Imperialist lackey!” But the newly appointed archbishop of Saigon, Francis Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan, answered quietly and directly, “No. I will not admit anything of the kind.” Continue »
The love of God the Father is embodied in Christ’s earthly Abba, St. Joseph!
The first time Christ uttered the word “Abba” on this earth, he was likely looking into the eyes of St. Joseph, which is a point that is worthy of mention. God the Father could have chosen to allow the Blessed Virgin to live and work as a single mother. Continue »
The Prophetic Ministry of St. Faustina
Eighteen-year old Helen Kowalska had things on her mind as she attended a dance in Lodz, Poland. She was doing her best to forget them, dancing gaily with her sister and friends, when her merriment came to a halt. As she later wrote, “I suddenly saw Jesus at my side. Jesus racked with pain, stripped of his clothing, all covered with wounds, who spoke these words to me: ‘How long . . . will you keep putting me off?’” Continue »
The first to see the risen Lord, Mary Magdalene is most remembered for her Easter testimony.
Renaissance and Elizabethan Englanders called Mary Magdalene the “Mawdleyn,” a version of her name that gave rise to the modern word “maudlin,” which describes someone who weeps sentimentally. Continue »
Mary’s response to the angel is to express complete openness to God’s will
Mary’s response to the angel is to express complete openness to God’s will for her life: “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” Continue »
One of the iconic images of the twentieth century is a tiny woman in a white and blue sari walking the slums of India, caring for the sick and dying. Blessed Teresa of Kolcata (August 26, 1910–September 5, 1997), or Mother Teresa of Calcutta as she is more commonly known, was proclaimed a living saint long before her death from heart failure. Continue »
What the Mother of the Sons of Zebedee Teaches Us
Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to [Jesus] with her sons, and kneeling before him, she asked a favor of him. And he said to her, “What do you want?” Continue »
Presentation of the Lord
In one sense, it was a routine duty: Forty days after giving birth to a son, every Jewish woman was required to bring an offering before the priest—a lamb and a pigeon or turtledove if she could afford it—or two turtledoves or pigeons if she was poor. Continue »
The Journey of Mother Marianne Cope
Marianne Cope is the eleventh American citizen to be canonized as a saint by the Catholic Church. Her feast day is January 23. Continue »
Finding Christ indeed leads to living “another way,” the new way of God’s kingdom.
Magi were learned sages from the East. The word magoi, meaning “wise men,” was the Greek form of the Old Persian magav. Perhaps Persian astrologers of a priestly caste, Matthew’s wise men are the first to seek an encounter with Jesus. Continue »
On the Annunciation
You have heard, O Virgin, that you will conceive and bear a son; you have heard that it will not be by man but by the Holy Spirit. The angel awaits an answer; it is time for him to return to God who sent him. We too are waiting, O Lady, for your word of compassion; the sentence of condemnation weighs heavily upon us. Continue »
Meet St. Nicholas the Wonder-Worker.
A friend was struggling. You could see it in his eyes and in his growing estrangement from his family and from church. I prayed for him, sensing he was headed for deep trouble. And since the need was so great and the crisis so near, I entrusted my friend to the care of St. Nicholas of Myra. Continue »
You will be persecuted, Jesus warns, but “it will lead to your giving testimony” (Luke 21:13).
There is absolutely no reason to be fearful and no need to rehearse what you might say. Jesus promises: “I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking that all your adversaries will be powerless to resist or refute” (21:15). Continue »
Blessed Miguel Agustin Pro
In February 1927, with one stroke of the pen, Mexican President General Plutarco Elias Calles turned every priest in his country into an outlaw. He ordered them to leave their posts, wherever they were, and to report immediately to Mexico City. Continue »
St. Martin of Tours shows us how
Here’s a paradox that is central to Christianity: We lose what we keep, and we gain what we give away! “Whoever seeks to preserve his life will lose it, but whoever loses it will save it,” Jesus told his disciples (Luke 17:33). Continue »