The majority of churches around the world are experiencing a situation where women vastly outnumber men. Of course there’s nothing wrong with women, but why aren’t men going to church? As passionate Catholic husbands, fathers, and brothers, we take this problem very seriously. (In fact, it’s why we started our entire ministry.) At some fundamental level men are not being fed the meat that their souls need. But what is that meat specifically, and how to we get it back?
George MacDonald says, “a man is enslaved to whatever he cannot part with that is less than himself.”
What is our identity? I believe this is a very important question. Unfortunately, I also believe that the answer has been muddied and twisted by our current, over-heated, political climate. Phrased “What is your identity?” who can help but think of the myriad politically-correct, predetermined categories that seek to answer that question for us. White, black, hispanic, middle class, lower class, poor, rich, one-percent, gay, straight, bi, and everyday more are created. But this type of categorization is a distraction, and a lie. Have you ever wondered why the same political ruling class who champions equality-for-all continually separate us into smaller and smaller groups and goad us into feeling shame, guilt or rage for the other groups? This is identity used as a weapon.
But what is our identity?
Jason Evert is one of the best Catholic speakers on the subject of chastity. He has dedicated his life to the very hard work of teaching teens the true goodness of sex and purity. On July 1st he appeared on the Catholic Answers radio podcast to answer questions about chastity. In the opening discussion he shared a story about a recent encounter with a teen who was dealing with transgender issues. This is a particularly hot topic now because of recent headlines with Bruce Jenner, Target, and more. Below is the story. Pay attention to how he answers this girls questions and clarifies her various feelings.
There is a great deal of confusion out there about sexuality, attraction, and identity, but there is a way through it. Often Catolics do not want to speak out because they do not know the answers, do not think their are answers, don’t want to make people upset, or just don’t want to be called a bigot. But there are answers.
Check it out, Jason speaks the truth in a loving way. That is how each of us should handle these issues.
Fr. Mike Schmitz, chaplain for Newman Catholic Campus Ministries at the University of Minnesota Duluth, is always a great source of spiritual inspiration and direction. His Sunday homilies, which he uploads as podcasts, are easy to digest while being incredibly thoughtful and substantive.
On this most recent Divine Mercy Sunday, Fr. Mike started a series of homilies focusing on what he calls Heroic Confidence. In this series, Fr. Mike puts forth the claim that many of us live and act with a sort of caution or timidity when it comes to the faith – as if we are afraid of living it to the fullest. But that is the opposite to how we should act! If we truly believe that Jesus rose from the dead, what do we have to fear?
Steve Ray is a regular contributor on Catholic Answers Radio and Catholic.com. Steve Ray is a convert to the Catholic Church and the author of three best-selling Ignatius Press books (Crossing the Tiber, Upon this Rock, and St. John’s Gospel). He speaks at conferences around the world. He is a regular guest on The Journey Home and has appeared on many other radio and TV programs, including Fox News.
In his latest appearance on Catholic Answers Radio, Steve discusses the importance of raising our children with the necessary skills to remain Catholic in today’s culture. Steve explains that despite the christian roots of our country’s founding our current culture is unarguably pagan. Through a series of personal anecdotes from his own role as a father of four, he shares many tips about raising kids who can withstand the temptations, distortions, and traps of the modern world.
G.K. Chesterton was an English journalist, art critic, poet, dramatist, apologist for the Christian faith, and (some may say) the greatest thinker and writer of the 20th century. He had something to say about everything, and was generally right about it. That is not to say he was arrogant. Rather he was a man of supreme humility and joy. He often defended truth and openly debated his contemporaries, he never did so from anger, but always from a point of wonder and graciousness.
This small clip is from the EWTN show ‘The Apostle of Common Sense’. Hosted by Dale Ahlquist and produced by the American Chesterton Society, this 20-minute show is a perfect introduction to Chesterton and his writings. His wisdom is timeless, and your faith will only improve by listening and reading his words.
Did you know his book, Everlasting Man, was one of the main reasons C.S. Lewis converted to Christianity? It’s true! Take some time to learn more about this giant of the faith. Or simply start by reading some of his timeless quotes.