How Two People Can Change a Parish

two doors

It is no accident that Jesus sent his disciples out in pairs (Mark 6:7, Luke 10:1). Think about it: if you want to convince people of something or be persuasive, it helps to have another person backing up your story. In a trial, it helps if there is more than one witness to testify. In […]

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Veronica: True Icon—A Tribute to My Mom


One of the great things about getting together as family is either being reminded of or noticing for the first time family resemblances. Oh, there are obvious facial resemblances. But there are also resemblances as far as personalities go. Some resemblances we inherit. Others we choose. Well, when it comes to my mom, Veronica, she no […]

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Conversing with Mary, Colloquy-Style

Mary, Our Lady of Olatz

There is a wonderful gem hidden within the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius that has been a grace-filled gift to my prayer life. Early in the Exercises, Ignatius recommends a creative type of prayer known as the colloquy. A colloquy, as Ignatius describes, is a conversation that, “is made, properly speaking, as one friend speaks […]

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How I Came to Pray the Rosary


My earliest memory of a rosary was a string of plain stainless beads and crucifix that I had put around my neck. I was five. I still remember the look on my mother’s face. She was amused, but told me that wasn’t what a rosary was for. “It’s not a necklace?” I asked. “No,” she […]

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Explaining the Holy Trinity

trinity symbol

“In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit”—these are words we use every time we pray the Sign of the Cross. Even young children know them. The prayer expresses the mystery of the Most Holy Trinity, that God reveals himself in Three Persons: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. This […]

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Three Questions at the Heart of the Celebration of the Ascension

3 Questions at the Heart of the Celebration of the Ascension/Ascension icon

Next week, we will be celebrating the Ascension of the Lord, a feast that often seems to lack the “punch” of other aspects of the Paschal Mystery. We tend to “get” the Incarnation, the suffering, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus. But why is it important to know that Jesus ascended into heaven? Does this feast simply […]

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Following in the Footsteps of St. Ignatius of Loyola

St. Ignatius of Loyola

As you read this, I am enjoying the privilege of being on a pilgrimage with a number of people from Loyola Press to Spain and Rome. We’ll follow in the footsteps of the founder of the Jesuits, St. Ignatius of Loyola! While on this sacred journey, I will be attempting to stay “off the grid” […]

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Faith Formation for Parents: Bruce’s Story

father and daughter

As he sat down, he leaned to the mom next to him and whispered, “Don’t ask any questions; I want to get out of here before eight!” This was Bruce*, a 40-something professional man whose daughter Denise was enrolled in our Confirmation program. The setting was a parent session offered before the children’s sacramental preparation […]

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Honoring Mary in the Classroom or Parish

Mary statue in outdoor grotto

Each May, Catholics across the globe celebrate the Blessed Virgin Mary, holy mother to us all. Through parish and classroom celebrations, we can show our love and respect for Mary and share her importance with those we teach. There are a variety of traditional activities that parishes use to celebrate Mary, such as the May […]

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Learning about the Apostles

Stefan Lochner, "Die Apostelmartyrien." "The Martyrdom of the Apostles," 1435-40, public domain via Wikimedia Commons.

During the Easter season, I like to spend some time talking with the young people about what happened to the disciples after the Resurrection. We cover the post-Resurrection appearances of Christ, but I also use the time to introduce the stories of the Apostles and where they went after the Ascension and Pentecost. Christ Our […]

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