Tag Archives: Sacraments

Confession during Mass?

May confessions be heard during Mass? There is still rather a lot of confusion about this question — both among priests and laity. It is not unusual to hear of a priest who, with a great sense of certitude, declares … Continue reading

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Eleven Years

Today — June 7, 2019 — is my eleventh anniversary of ordination. Spare a prayer for me today, if you will. Thank you! And thanks be to God. This past year has been a big one… First, there was the … Continue reading

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Retirement of a Bishop

My bishop, the Most Rev. Robert J. Baker, S.T.D., turns 75 today. Happy Birthday! Many people of course realize that bishops ordinarily retire when they reach 75, and so are wondering “what happens next” — some are also anxious about … Continue reading

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The Marital Debt

One very traditional (and important) Church teaching that has all but disappeared from Catholic consciousness in recent decades is that of “the marital debt”, also known as “the conjugal debt”. This teaching has to do with the obligation that spouses … Continue reading

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Confession behind the Screen

The recent legal moves against the seal of confession in California — see Bishop Barron’s commentary here — are a good argument for only having anonymous (behind the screen) confessions. So a brother priest tweeted — and I heartily agree. No priest is … Continue reading

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The Holy Spirit, Bringer of Order

Here follow some thoughts on the work of the Holy Spirit, prompted by my reflection on today’s gospel about the peace of Christ (John 14:27-31). It’s not uncommon to encounter the idea in the Church today that the Holy Spirit … Continue reading

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Eucharistic Faith and Reverence for the Renewal of the Church

Some rather profound commentaries in French have passed through my Twitter feed in the past few days, and there is an awful lot that I would like to say and share, even as I lack the time to do so. … Continue reading

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Can Sacramental Penances Count for Indulgences?

I recently had occasion to consult the Manual of Indulgences and was reminded of something I had forgotten: namely, that the prayers or works we are assigned as a penance when we go to Confession can, in fact, count towards receiving … Continue reading

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Betrothal

As we go about rediscovering elements of our rich tradition — a movement which was given great impulse by the document Summorum Pontificum, published on 7/7/07 — one of the things that one sometimes encounters now is young couples who … Continue reading

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Scrupulosity

Most priests who have a pastoral ministry find themselves in a position to guide a scrupulous conscience at one time or another. And some priests have been better equipped than others to deal with this delicate task. Doing so well … Continue reading

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A Coherent and Complete System

A priest who begins to learn about the old Rituale Romanum, with its collection of Blessings, may be surprised to notice that no blessing is provided for purificators. There is a blessing for palls (the stiff square that goes on top … Continue reading

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Altar of Repose 2019

I wanted to share this photo of this year’s Altar of Repose in my parish, the Cathedral of Saint Paul, Birmingham, Alabama. This year’s variation includes sheaves of wheat and bunches of grapes (beside and on the candlesticks), as well … Continue reading

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