Human Formation & the Crisis of Trust

In 1990, 238 synod fathers met in Rome for the 8th Ordinary General Synod on “The Formation of Priests in Circumstances of the Present Day.” They presented Pope John Paul… Read More

Baby Step: Phone Calls

Today I continue the series I promised last time: baby steps toward increased trust between bishops and priests. Today’s step is phone calls—both from the bishop to priests and priests’… Read More

Baby Steps: What’s in a Name?

I have been slowly reading through the first write-in section of our national survey of Catholic priests. We asked priests, “In your opinion, what is one step that should be… Read More

Shot Rolling on the Deck

Sometimes I send my column to particular friends who I think may have insights on the topic that would help either the writing or the content. One friend who shares… Read More

Authority: Patrick O’Brian and the Church

I wrote recently about obedience in the context of authority in the Church, and I promised a part two on leadership. It is easy to see how obedience can be… Read More

One’s crosses are not public property—until they are

The Church is nourished by the blood of the martyrs. This is something that is communicated nonverbally almost everywhere you look in the Church. Walk into one and try not… Read More

Obedience: Virtue and Counsel

In college, someone recommended that I read A Right to Be Merry by Mother Mary Francis, P.C.C. When I finished it, I knew two things: cloistered religious life was absolutely… Read More

How is the Church governed?

A question that keeps coming up for me regarding the synod on synodality is, “What do you mean by X?” X could be lay participation; women’s decision-making; hierarchical ministry; governance;… Read More

Marriage and Divorce

“[Jesus] said to them, ‘Because of the hardness of your hearts Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. I say to you,… Read More

The Inevitable Inequality of Bodies

I went to see the Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of Richard III last month. The actor playing Richard in this production has radial dysplasia, which added a certain amount of… Read More

The Eucharistic Revival and the Art of Gathering: Part 2

This is the second part of my little series on the National Eucharistic Revival and Priya Parker’s book, The Art of Gathering. Last time, I applied Parker’s first three points… Read More

The National Eucharistic Revival and The Art of Gathering

I recently hosted a party that was much more elaborate than any I had hosted before. It was at a beautifully-refurbished parish hall and featured English Country Dancing, led by… Read More