“Road Map” to the Survival of the Catholic Family

Beloved, included in my previous (first!) column was the “road map” to the survival of the Catholic family in the midst of what Bishop Athanasius Schneider has called a “heretical wasteland.” I mentioned I would strive to cover each of the twelve points in subsequent posts. Here, as a brief refresher, are Bishop Schneider’s twelve…

The Blessed Boon of Homeschooling

My Andrew used to twirl himself upside down on the couch, so that his feet hung over the back, while I tried to teach him his phonograms. His sense of obedience kept him on the couch, but his restless body just needed to move. In the end, it was Cheerios that taught him to read. …

Thanksgiving Day Meditation on Gratitude

“Is not our life a continuous succession of the mercies and charities of God, and at the same time, an incessant display of ingratitude on our part?” -Dr. Dietrich von Hildebrand In the final section of the TAN classic The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the author sets the stage by asking retreatants…

Baptism, Confession and the Adult Child’s Return to the Sacraments

Baptism How silly we humans can be. Have you gone to great lengths to celebrate your child’s birthday? Have you put time and energy into buying and wrapping the perfect gift? Have you bought the ingredients and baked an elaborate cake? Have you inflated the balloons and hung the streamers, invited family and friends, and…

Homeschooling Along the Path to Eternal Life

When you first hold your sweet-smelling newborn baby in your arms, nestling your heart to theirs, it doesn’t take long to realize that you are holding a sublime sign of hope for the world. Their baptized soul radiates the infinite, undying mercy of God the Father; their eyes hold the capacity to discover life’s marvels;…

Why Gregorian Chant is Supreme (Part II)

As a new generation of Catholics is rediscovering the patrimony of Gregorian chant and realizing that it belongs to them in a specific way as part of their inheritance, they are flocking to the Latin Mass, with music as a major catalyst.  Many are turning to Vatican Council II for guidance, which not only authorizes…

Preserving Catholic Culture in a Hostile World

By J. P. Sonnen “Tolerance will reach such a level that intelligent people will be banned from thinking so as not to offend the imbeciles.” —Fyodor Dostoyevsky The Christian family finds itself today in a unique and precarious situation of survival. Catholic beliefs and practices are on trial and pushed ever into the private sector,…

Introducing Children to the Liturgical Seasons

The worldly parent focuses only on the natural seasons: fall, winter, spring, and summer. However, you, Dear Parent, child of Holy Mother Church, must not dwell solely in the natural but, more importantly, in the supernatural—that is, the Church’s liturgical life. Through the liturgical seasons of Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter, Ordinary time, and her many…

How Catholics Fall into Liberalism

“Liberalism is therefore the radical and universal denial of all divine truth and Christian dogma, the primal type of all heresy, and the supreme rebellion against the authority of God and His Church.” –Fr. Felix Sarda y Salvany Below is an excerpt from a TAN Books classic, Liberalism is a Sin by Fr. Felix Sarda…

Solitude and the Parents of St. Faustina

In February of 1935, a nun, obscure at the time, named Sr. Maria Faustina Kowalska of the Most Blessed Sacrament was being summoned to visit her severely ill mother, Marianna, who was battling acute liver pain. Thirteen years had passed since Faustina had last been home, and it had been seven years since she saw…

Exposing the St. Gallen Mafia: Exclusive Interview with the Author

In discussing my new book, The St. Gallen Mafia, certain questions frequently come up. Here are some of them. What made you want to write this book? I still remember the moment when I first became captivated with the St. Gallen mafia, the secret group of high-ranking churchmen who used to meet at or near…

Humility is Essential to All to be Saved (Part I)

“No one reaches the kingdom of Heaven except by humility.” -St. Augustine The TAN Books “Book of the Year” is a favorite entitled Humility of Heart by Fr. Cajetan Mary da Bergamo. The English version of this TAN classic was first published in 1905, translated by Herbert Cardinal Vaughan of England who for more than…

The Month of All Souls: 5 Ways Catholics Honor Their Dead

“All nations honor their dead. Whether enlightened by faith or groping in error, all strive to keep alive the memory of those whom death has taken away.”  -Fr. John Sullivan, Catholic theologian Love of the departed and a desire to perpetuate their memory is found in every land and culture, both pagan and civilized.  Along the…

Restoring Prayer in the Home

When your child was young, you taught your little one how to go to sleep, brush his teeth, pray, and so on. But have you trained your child to arise from slumber? Have you taught your son or daughter a Morning Offering to be said directly upon waking? Is this any harder than teaching your…

The Quest for Mary the Historical Mother of Jesus

“Mary’s greatness consists in the fact that she wants to magnify God, not herself.” -Benedict XVI Not much is known about the life of Mary, the woman chosen to be the Mother of Christ.  Nevertheless, she is the most famous of women in history, guardedly revealed to us by the inspired books.  Yet she is…

God Wills Our Good

“If, devout soul, it is your will to please God and live a life of serenity in this world, unite yourself always and in all things to the divine will.” -St. Alphonsus Our Lord assured His apostles the reward of following his will, “Your joy no man shall take from you…your joy shall be full”…

The Holy Eucharist and the Parents of St. Thérèse

Zélie was so in love with the Holy Eucharist that, five weeks before her death, weakened by cancer, she still attended Mass. Throughout their lives, Louis and Zélie were ardent devotees of the First Friday Devotions. Only two centuries earlier, Our Lord had communicated to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque His great desire that the First…

How to Advance in Holiness: Lectio Divina

How do we advance in holiness? This not an impractical question. The Church teaches us that we have three necessary means of salvation and, those same, according to degree, attain holiness: sacramental grace, prayer, and virtue. All three pistons have to be running in unison for the motor of the spiritual organism to advance. By…