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God is Good

When my religion class was recently discussing “goodness,” I asked them a tricky question. How is it that, in the creation account of Genesis, God calls His creation, including man, “good” seven times (Cf. Genesis 1:4, 10, 12, 18, 21, 25, and 31), yet Jesus says in the Gospel “None is good but God alone” (Luke 18:19)? A bright freshman named Anne gave the best … More →


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The Drama of Holy Week

Contrary to custom, I’m reposting/resending this piece I wrote for Holy Week four years ago. A blessed Holy Week, Triduum, and Easter to all our readers! If the Church’s liturgical calendar were a temple of time consecrated to God, what we are fast approaching is that temple’s Holy of Holies. The Church sanctifies every week of the year, but only one, by virtue of excellence, does she … More →

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Art, Religion, and Purpose

Brother Francis used often to speak of the importance of purpose. He would begin with Aristotle, but not end there — for “the Philosopher,” as he was known, did not ascend to the truths of supernatural revelation. Aristotle saw the “four causes” in nature: formal cause, material cause, efficient cause, and final cause. That last, the final cause, is called “the cause of causes.” It … More →


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Good Servants, Poor Masters

[As Lent begins, please let me draw the readers’ attention to two relevant offerings on our web site: Suggested Lenten Penances, and Guilt Transformed, Some Lenten Thoughts. Also, for those beginning the preparation for Total Consecration on February 20 in order to make the consecration on March 25, here is a book with True Devotion to Mary and all the readings and prayers you will … More →


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The Evil in Our Hearts

“Blessed are the clean of heart: for they shall see God.” (Mt. 5:8). Without a doubt, the sixth Beatitude pertains to sexual purity, but not exclusively so. Its scope also includes purity of charity and of faith, as well as love of truth in general. Saint John Chrysostom goes so far as to make it synonymous with the presence of all the virtues and holiness … More →


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Montfortian Masculinity

“I am therefore very worried, and I call upon all Catholics, laymen, priests, and bishops, to involve themselves, from now up to the upcoming [October, 2015] Synodal assembly, in order to highlight the truth on marriage.” The words come to us from Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke, and were spoken in an interview to Le Figaro’s Jean-Marie Guénois. Intentionally or unintentionally, the good Cardinal has become … More →

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The Divine Infancy

Pax Christi! The month of December is dedicated to the “Divine Infancy.” As with so many consecrated phrases in the Religion, that innocent pairing of words touches upon a great mystery that a little child can understand, while the greatest minds of Christendom, past and future, could never completely scale its heights. For a moment, let us situate ourselves somewhere between the little child and … More →


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Looking on Jesus, the Prince of Peace

Far from being what the world thinks it is, namely, the shopping season between Black Friday and Christmas Day, Advent is the Church’s time of penitential preparation for the feast of the Nativity. More than that, Advent prepares us for the two comings of Jesus in time and for His three births. At Christmastime, we will hear a lot about peace. (We are, even now, … More →


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Christian Certitude

All our knowledge of God is analogical. In brief, this means that every concept that we rightly apply to God is partly the same as, but also partly different from, that same concept as applied to creatures. (Click here for a fuller explanation.) We know God by means of the world around us — the Book of Nature. All creation was made for God’s glory … More →

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The Paramagisterium

The Catholic Church is infallible. Her infallibility is supremely invested in the Roman Pontiff, but is also exercised by the college of bishops, when they universally teach the same doctrine with and under the pope. Not only books, but libraries of books have been written to explain the truths expressed in those two sentences, there being myriad complexities surrounding an issue that is, at its heart, quite simple. … More →


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Revolutionary Doctrines on the Family

Much is being said about the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops just completed. Typically for such an event, ecclesiastical politics of the worst sort were on display, as can be seen from the excellent reportage of Sandro Magister and Rorate Caeli. In this respect, we have just witnessed a repeat performance of the kind of procedural manipulation very well documented to have taken place at Vatican … More →


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Counterrevolutionary Considerations

Saint Benedict Center’s conference will take place very soon (October 10-11). As I prepare my own comments on this year’s theme, I thought I would give both a plug for, and a sneak preview of, what our attendees will be hearing in a little over a month. Our theme is “Catholic and Counterrevolutionary.” For my purposes, I will define “counterrevolutionary” as “of or pertaining to … More →


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Salvation Here and Now

Our holy Faith forbids us to say that our salvation is entirely assured in this life and that we cannot fall from grace before we come to our particular judgment and accordingly be damned. The Council of Trent labels such a false assurance “rash presumption” in chapter twelve of its Decree on Justification. The only exception to this is for the just soul who has … More →


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How to Become Divine

Satan lied to Eve, but his lie had a couple of grains of truth to it. He said that the reason God did not want Adam and her to eat of the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge was because, “God doth know that in what day soever you shall eat thereof, your eyes shall be opened: and you shall be as Gods, knowing good … More →


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Exploring Nature to Find God

Our readers may be aware that here at Saint Benedict Center, we have a scouting apostolate affiliated with the Federation of North American Explorers (FNE). The FNE has enshrined the following as point six of its Explorer Law: “An explorer sees in nature God’s creations; he loves plants and animals.” Short and sweet, but there is much behind it. Ancient Greek philosophers believed that nature … More →


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