28 04, 2015

Jesus and Religion Part III

By |2015-07-10T13:29:34+00:00April 28th, 2015|Theology|

For a few weeks, I’m living in the Muslim quarter of Kolkata. I wear my Roman collar around here, and what's peculiar is that I rarely get snarky looks from the swarms of Muslims and Hindus packed into this city. Actually, I was shocked at how much respect the Muslims gave me on Qatar Airlines even as I wore my cassock. On the other hand, a certain generation of Catholics in the United States treat me very differently when they see the cassock. That generation of Americans always stops me with a unconvincing rictus to tell me some combo of the following: 1. I’m glad that what you’re doing “works for [...]

26 04, 2015

Jesus and Religion Part II

By |2015-06-20T10:52:09+00:00April 26th, 2015|Theology|

The world over is home to about 7 billion people.  Did you know that most of these people (4 billion) have never heard of Jesus Christ?  These 4 billion have seen neither hide nor hair of any Christian willing to share the Gospel. The area most neglected is in the blue areas of the map above.  Most of those 4 billion live here.  Some missionaries refer to it as the "10/40 window"  because here, between the 10th and 40th latitude, live the most unevangelized peoples.  I am currently in this window for a few weeks. Considering the urgency of such a missionary call to evangelize the Far East, we Catholics might be tempted [...]

25 04, 2015

Asian Earthquakes

By |2015-04-27T12:49:08+00:00April 25th, 2015|Life|

We felt the tremors of both earthquakes this past weekend.  I spoke to one minor causality here in Kolkata, but there are thousands of people dead to the north of us.  Please pray for the deceased: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-32475030  

24 04, 2015

Jesus and Religion Part I

By |2015-06-20T10:50:46+00:00April 24th, 2015|Theology|

There's a video that went viral on YouTube by Jefferson Bethke called "Why I hate religion but love Jesus."  It has almost 30,000,000 views, and there have been formidable Catholic rebuttals online, in conferences, in podcasts and newspapers. Surprisingly, none of the Catholic apologists whom I have read (which admittedly is only a few) have pointed out that the word "religion" is promoted as a good thing in the New Testament: "If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person's religion is worthless. Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and [...]

24 04, 2015

The dangers of nighttime taxis

By |2015-04-25T10:08:50+00:00April 24th, 2015|Life|

Last night, at 10pm, I took a taxi from a restaurant here in India to the priest home near Bl. Mother Teresa's "Motherhouse."  As the taxi started, a dwarf jumped in my taxi, unannounced and uninvited.  He said to me "Hello, boss!" from his side in the back where we both were.   He immediately rolled his window and popped his head out as we barreled through traffic.  He began yelling at the extremely crowded Kolkata streets in Bengali, assumedly to get out of the way.  With his head out, standing up, he looked like an American cowboy hooting and hollering, stomping his feet in delight against the floor of the taxi.  The driver [...]

22 04, 2015

Consolation versus Desolation

By |2015-05-02T15:34:10+00:00April 22nd, 2015|Theology|

Flying over India last night, I found that every time I lifted my heart to God, I was given tremendous peace and consolation, especially when I thought of St. Francis Xavier bringing the Gospel of Jesus Christ to that land 37,000 feet below me, dark at 3am and barely alit with the poor lights of over a billion people. I wondered why this joy didn't happen every time I prayed! That is what this post is about: Why we enjoy God in prayer some days, and then fear our time in prayer on other days. I just finished offering the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass at the tomb of Mother [...]

20 04, 2015

Beltway Memorial

By |2015-05-02T15:31:27+00:00April 20th, 2015|Theology|

On my way to Asia I have a stop over in Washington DC to visit friends.  I used to live out here, but driving on the beltway today, I thought of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall.  I did a little research, and it turns out that it contains the names of 58,272 fallen American soldiers.  I wondered how an Abortion Memorial Wall would appear in our nation's Capital, considering we now have 57,000,000 "fallen" babies.  It turns out that, if such a wall were the same height as the Vietnam Memorial Wall (10 feet and 3 inches high), the Abortion Memorial Wall would be 91 miles long, which means that [...]

16 04, 2015

Family Roles and the Sacrifice of the Mass

By |2018-07-13T02:24:51+00:00April 16th, 2015|Theology|

The masculine and the feminine in the liturgy is a common topic on the blogosphere right now, so I want to put polemic aside and just see how the Sacred Scripture sees male and female symbolism in the sacrifice of the Old Testament and the New Testament. Because we’re looking to Scripture, I want to quote the man who I believe is the greatest Scripture scholar alive, Dr. Brandt Pitre. He is a young husband and father raising several children in Louisiana. Dr. Pitre contends that, for St. Paul, the main difference between male and female is not strength versus weakness, but rather transcendent versus immanent. Let’s consider the definitions [...]

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