- "... Many of the disagreements at the synod about the pastoral care of the family arose from choosing to offer only a partial Emmaus experience to those who might be discouraged, walking into the night. But partial Emmaus is not what Jesus wants for His people; it is not what the pastors of the Church are called to offer in service. If we only accompany but do not convert, then we simply walk beside people farther into the night, away from the community of faith in Jerusalem. If we only question and listen, then we withhold from people the saving news of salvation. If we only rebuke, then we afflict those already suffering. If we only teach the objective truth of the Scriptures, we fail to show how it is good news for each particular soul. If we bring people to the Eucharist without first preparing them for conversion along the road, then they will not be transformed by the revelation of Christ. I don’t suggest that it is easy to do all that Jesus did on the way to Emmaus, and it may well be that offering the full Emmaus is not welcomed. Our challenge is to try our best. That’s our mission, both as pastors and as fellow disciples: To draw near, to accompany, to question, to listen, to rebuke the lack of faith, to teach the truth of the Gospel, to reveal Christ, to restore hope, to convert, to return to the Church. ..."--Cardinal Timothy Dolan
- "... Where else could I turn? God's house is the only house where sinners are made welcome..."--Oscar Wilde, A Woman of No Importance
- "Love can canonize people. The saints are those who have been most loved. ... We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars." Oscar Wilde, Lady Windermere's Fan
- "We wish to confirm once more that the task of evangelizing all people constitutes the essential mission of the Church." It is a task and mission which the vast and profound changes of present-day society make all the more urgent. Evangelizing is in fact the grace and vocation proper to the Church, her deepest identity. She exists in order to evangelize, that is to say, in order to preach and teach, to be the channel of the gift of grace, to reconcile sinners with God, and to perpetuate Christ's sacrifice in the Mass, which is the memorial of His death and glorious resurrection."--Evangelii Nuntiandi, 14
- “‘But, Father, I have read in a newspaper that a bishop has done such a thing, or a priest who has done this thing.’ Oh yes, I read it, too. Tell me, though: do the papers carry news of what great charity so many priests, so many priests in so many parishes of the city and the countryside, perform? Of the great work they do in carrying their people forward? No? This is not news. It is the same as always: a single falling tree makes more noise than a forest that grows."—Pope Francis
- Had Christ wanted perfection in the running of the Church, he would have stayed and run it himself.--Patricia Treece, Meet John XXIII: Joyful Pope and Father to All (Servant Books, 2008), pg. 121, paraphrasing Archbishop Loris Capovilla
- The only real sadness, the only real failure, the only great tragedy in life, is not to become a saint.--Leon Bloy
- That which Voldemort does not value, he takes no trouble to comprehend. Of house-elves and children's tales, of love, loyalty, and innocence, Voldemort knows and understands nothing. Nothing. That they all have a power beyond his own, a power beyond the reach of any magic, is a truth he has never grasped.--Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
- Say what you will about the liturgical lassitude assumed of a Jesuit, nobody can accuse them of sugarcoating. To quote my friend Dave, "A holy priest calls a spade a spade, and a holy Jesuit calls it a @#$%ing shovel.")--JMG
- The Blessed Virgin had to have more faith than all people and all angels. She saw her Son in the crib at Bethlehem and believed Him to be the Creator of the world; she saw Him run in exile from Herod and believed Him to be the King of Kings; ... she saw that He did not speak and believed Him to be the Word of Eternal Wisdom.--St. Alphonsus Liguori
- "God uses broken things. It takes broken soil to produce a crop, broken clouds to give rain, broken grain to give bread, broken bread to give strength. It is the broken alabaster box that gives forth perfume."- Vance Havner
- [Y]ou may exchange the tithe for money, and with the money securely in hand, go to the place which the LORD, your God, chooses. You may then exchange the money for whatever you desire, oxen or sheep, wine or beer, or anything else you want, and there in the presence of the LORD, your God, you shall consume it and rejoice, you and your household together. — Deut. 14:25-26
- Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things are passing away:
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things
Whoever has God lacks nothing;
God alone suffices.-- St. Teresa of Avila;
- God led his people out of Egypt and then gave them His law. God does not say “Follow these rules, and maybe I will save you.” God says: “I save you—follow these rules if you want to love me back.” The entire dynamic of the Bible and the Gospel is about receiving God’s love first, and His Law second.--Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry
- The road must be trod, but it will be very hard and neither strength nor wisdom will carry us far upon it. This quest may be attempted by the weak with as much hope as the strong. Yet such is of the course of deeds that move the wheels of the world: Small hands do them because they must, while the eyes of the great are elsewhere.--Elrond at the Council in Rivendell, JRR Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
- ...It may still be noted that the unconverted world, Puritan or Pagan, but perhaps especially when it is Puritan, has a very strange notion of the collective unity of Catholic things or thoughts. Its exponents, even when not in any rabid sense enemies, give the most curious lists of things which they think make up the Catholic life; an odd assortment of objects, such as candles, rosaries, incense (they are always intensely impressed with the enormous importance and necessity of incense), vestments, pointed windows, and then all sorts of essentials or unessentials thrown in in any sort of order; fasts, relics, penances or the Pope. But even in their bewilderment, they do bear witness to a need which is not so nonsensical as their attempts to fulfill it; the need of somehow summing up "all that sort of thing," which does really describe Catholicism and nothing else except Catholicism. It should of course be described from within, by the definition and development of its theological first principles; but that is not the sort of need I am talking about. I mean that men need an image, single, coloured and clear in outline, an image to be called up instantly in the imagination, when what is Catholic is to be distinguished from what claims to be Christian or even what in one sense is Christian. Now I can scarcely remember a time when the image of Our Lady did not stand up in my mind quite definitely, at the mention or the thought of all these things......I never doubted that this figure was the figure of the Faith; that she embodied, as a complete human being still only human, all that this Thing had to say to humanity. The instant I remembered the Catholic Church, I remembered her; when I tried to forget the Catholic Church, I tried to forget her; when I finally saw what was nobler than my fate, the freest and the hardest of all my acts of freedom, it was in front of a gilded and very gaudy little image of her in the port of Brindisi, that I promised the thing that I would do, if I returned to my own land...--G. K. Chesterton, "Mary and the Convert"
- "Out of the mouth of the Mother of God
Like a little word come I;
For I go gathering Christian men
From sunken paving and ford and fen,
To die in a battle, God knows when,
By God, but I know why.
"And this is the word of Mary,
The word of the world's desire
'No more of comfort shall ye get,
Save that the sky grows darker yet
And the sea rises higher.'" — Ballad of the White Horse, G. K. Chesterton
- “No merely human institution conducted with such knavish imbecility would have lasted a fortnight”--Hillaire Belloc on Catholicism
- “We have now sunk to a depth at which the restatement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men”--George Orwell
- ...What nobody tells people who are beginners — and I really wish someone had told this to me . . . is that all of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. For the first couple years you make stuff, and it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not.
But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase. They quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know it’s normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story.
It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.” - Ira Glass
- ...You might wonder why, if God can convince atheists to worship Him merely by dropping by for a visit, He does not do it more often. The reason is that it does not help, not at all, not a bit. When I suffer doubts, when my faith gets weak, my faith in my memory gets weak too. Faith and faithlessness have NOTHING TO DO with evidence presented to reason or senses. It has to do with a humble will and an upright heart. If God presented evidence to skeptics, all that would happen is that skeptics would doubt their evidence. If God gave a logical argument to prove His own existence, all that would happen is that skeptics would doubt the power of logic to prove anything.
Skepticism pretends it is all about open-mindedness and evidence. Not so. Skepticism is about suspicion and pride and self-will. It is about pretending you are smarter than people who, if you only knew, are actually wiser than you and your sneering questions and foolish word-tricks. The only place we ever see a humble skeptic is in the physical sciences, because scientists are willing to let their conclusions be ruled on by nature...--John C. Wright, "Why I am not a Deist." johncwright.livejournal.com, 2006-11-30 18:39:00
- I AM A PART of the Fellowship of the Unashamed. The die has been cast. The decision has been made. I have stepped over the line. I wont look back, let up, slow down, back away or be still.
My past is redeemed, my present makes sense, and my future is in Gods hands. I am finished and done with low living, sight walking, small planning, the bare minimum, smooth knees, colorless dreams, tamed visions, mundane talking, frivolous living, selfish giving, and dwarfed goals. I no longer need preeminence, prosperity, position, promotions, applause, or popularity. I dont have to be right, first, the best, recognized, praised, regarded, or rewarded. I now live by faith. I lean on Christs presence.
I love with patience, live by prayer, and labor with the power of Gods grace. My face is set. My gait is fast, my goal is heaven. My road is narrow, my way is rough, my companions are few, my Guide is reliable, and my mission is clear. I cannot be bought, compromised, detoured, lured away, turned back, deluded, or delayed. I will not flinch in the face of sacrifice, hesitate in the presence of adversity, negotiate at the table of the enemy, ponder at the pool of popularity, or meander in the maze of mediocrity.
I won’t give up, shut up, let up or slow up until I have stayed up, stored up, prayed up, paid up, and spoken up for the cause of Christ. I am a disciple of Jesus. I must go till He comes, give until I drop, speak out until all know, and work until He stops me. And when He returns for His own, He will have no difficulty recognizing me. My banner is clear: I am a part of the Fellowship of the Unashamed.--Unknown
- When we see divisions in the Church--dissent, a lack of clarity, seemingly willful ignorance--then we see a need for the Holy Spirit. Rather than curse the darkness, we should invoke the third person.--Scott Hahn, Signs of Life: 40 Catholic Customs and Their Biblical Roots, (New York: Doubleday, 2009), pg. 13.
- Christian marriages, sanctuaries of life and love, are a leaven in our world, a beacon of hope for a better future. As a community of faith, we must recommit ourselves to foster this vocation in the Church. We have before us the Holy Family at Nazareth, Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. Theirs was a community of love and fidelity, and a testimony of the centrality of marriage and family in the history of salvation.
May the spirit of Nazareth reign in the homes of all our Catholic families and may we be able to communicate that spirit to the young men and women preparing to receive the Sacrament of Matrimony in this millennium.--"Marriage: An American Crisis: Pastoral Letter," Bishop Seán P. O’Malley, OFM Cap., Diocese of Fall River, February 13, 2000.
- I am convinced that we must build a civilization of love on God’s Commandments, or we will have no civilization at all. What should be obvious to us all is that “business as usual” will not do. And we need to begin with: “Thou shalt not kill.”—Bishop Seán P. O’Malley, OFM Cap., "For the Love of Life: Pastoral Letter on the Gospel of Life," Diocese of Fall River, October 19, 2000
- Some say: “I am opposed to abortion, but I cannot impose my religion on the whole population.” Defending human rights is not imposing Catholicism on the country. An appeal to respect for pluralism in this case is spurious. How about people who would say: “I am opposed to slavery or cannibalism, but I don’t want to impose my religion on others.”—Bishop Seán P. O’Malley, OFM Cap., "For the Love of Life: Pastoral Letter on the Gospel of Life," Diocese of Fall River, October 19, 2000
- In his moving sermon in Moby Dick, Father Marple says, “To obey God, we have to disobey ourselves – and that is always hard.”--"Marriage: An American Crisis: Pastoral Letter," Bishop Seán P. O’Malley, OFM Cap., Diocese of Fall River, February 13, 2000.
- Over the past four decades, the public’s trust in the press has steadily declined — but not because the press has become less trustworthy, but because they’ve caught on to us.--Jack Shafer, "Our national pastime: Press criticism," Op-Ed, Reuters, April 10, 2013
- Pournelle's Iron Law of Bureaucracy states that in any bureaucratic organization there will be two kinds of people":
First, there will be those who are devoted to the goals of the organization. Examples are dedicated classroom teachers in an educational bureaucracy, many of the engineers and launch technicians and scientists at NASA, even some agricultural scientists and advisors in the former Soviet Union collective farming administration.The Iron Law states that in every case the second group will gain and keep control of the organization. It will write the rules, and control promotions within the organization.
Secondly, there will be those dedicated to the organization itself. Examples are many of the administrators in the education system, many professors of education, many teachers union officials, much of the NASA headquarters staff, etc.
- "If anyone has an urge to kill an abortionist, kill me instead."--Cardinal John O'Connor
- "...One day science will fix things, so this part of us, this vicious part, will be caged up. The Beast. Maybe we can make a child without the gene for sorrow and rage, maybe we can make a thinking machine without the subroutine for hate. Maybe."
"We have the genes and routines now," she said. "The cure for hate is forgiveness. The cure for outrage is humility. The cure for sorrow is thankfulness. Even a child can learn these three; no grand scheme of human eugenics to produce the transhuman is needed."--John C. Wright, Count to a Trillion, paperback, (Tor, 2011) pg. 367.
- Montrose decide then and there that a full library, one made of old-fashioned paper books with bindings, the kind that cannot be electronically re-edited by anonymous lines of hidden code, was just as much a necessity for a free man as a shooting iron or a printing press.--John C. Wright, Count to a Trillion, paperback, (Tor, 2011) pg. 253.
- Henri De Lubac once wrote that the difference between St. Francis and Martin Luther is the difference between a reform aimed at holiness and a reform aimed at criticism.--John Allen
- “If heretics no longer horrify us today, as they once did our forefathers, is it certain that it is because there is more charity in our hearts? Or would it not too often be, perhaps, without our daring to say so, because the bone of contention, that is to say, the very substance of our faith, no longer interests us? Men of too familiar and too passive a faith, perhaps for us dogmas are no longer the Mystery on which we live, the Mystery which is to be accomplished in us. Consequently then, heresy no longer shocks us; at least, it no longer convulses us like something trying to tear the soul of our souls away from us…. And that is why we have no trouble in being kind to heretics, and no repugnance in rubbing shoulders with them… It is not always charity, alas, which has grown greater, or which has become more enlightened: it is often faith, the taste for the things of eternity, which has grown less…”-- Henri de Lubac: Further Paradoxes (Newman Press 1958) and reprinted in Paradoxes of Faith (Ignatius Press 1987)
- “There are times when the burden of need and our own limitations might tempt us to become discouraged. But precisely then we are helped by the knowledge that, in the end, we are only instruments in the Lord's hands; and this knowledge frees us from the presumption of thinking that we alone are personally responsible for building a better world. In all humility we will do what we can, and in all humility we will entrust the rest to the Lord. It is God who governs the world, not we. We offer him our service only to the extent that we can, and for as long as he grants us the strength....”–Pope Benedict XVI, Encyclical Letter Deus Caritas Est (35), 25 December 2006
- "As far as possible, we should all think alike and speak alike, in conformity with the Apostle's teaching [Phil. 2:2]: and differing doctrines ought not to be permitted, either orally in sermons or public lectures, or in books . . . Diversity, which is generally the mother of discord and the enemy of union of wills, should be avoided as far as possible."
-St. Ignatius, Jesuit Constitutions, 273.
- Blessed John Henry Newman had this to say in a sermon preached on "Be sure your sin will find your out" (Numbers 32:23): Day and night follow each other not more surely than punishment comes upon sin. Whether the sin is great or little, momentary or habitual, willful or through infirmity, its own peculiar punishment seems, according to the law of nature, to follow --as fas as our experience of that law carries us-- sooner or later, lighter or heavier, as the case may be. ("The Moral Consequences of Single Sins," Parochial and Plain Sermons)--Paul Zalonski
- From the Book of Lamentations. 3:27-32
It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth. Let him sit alone in silence when he has laid it on him; let him put his mouth in the dust - there may yet be hope; let him give his cheek to the smiter, and be filled with insults. For the Lord will not cast off for ever, but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion, according to the abundance of his steadfast love.
What can the third fall of Jesus under the Cross say to us? We have considered the fall of man in general, and the falling of many Christians away from Christ and into a godless secularism. Should we not also think of how much Christ suffers in his own Church? How often is the holy sacrament of his Presence abused, how often must he enter empty and evil hearts! How often do we celebrate only ourselves, without even realizing that he is there! How often is his Word twisted and misused! What little faith is present behind so many theories, so many empty words! How much filth there is in the Church, and even among those who, in the priesthood, ought to belong entirely to him! How much pride, how much self-complacency! What little respect we pay to the Sacrament of Reconciliation, where he waits for us, ready to raise us up whenever we fall! All this is present in his Passion. His betrayal by his disciples, their unworthy reception of his Body and Blood, is certainly the greatest suffering endured by the Redeemer; it pierces his heart. We can only call to him from the depths of our hearts: Kyrie eleison – Lord, save us (cf. Mt 8: 25).
Lord, your Church often seems like a boat about to sink, a boat taking in water on every side. In your field we see more weeds than wheat. The soiled garments and face of your Church throw us into confusion. Yet it is we ourselves who have soiled them! It is we who betray you time and time again, after all our lofty words and grand gestures. Have mercy on your Church; within her too, Adam continues to fall. When we fall, we drag you down to earth, and Satan laughs, for he hopes that you will not be able to rise from that fall; he hopes that being dragged down in the fall of your Church, you will remain prostrate and overpowered. But you will rise again. You stood up, you arose and you can also raise us up. Save and sanctify your Church. Save and sanctify us all.--Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI), Good Friday Way of the Cross, 2005
- The commission that we receive from the graves of the Second World War is to strengthen the forces of good and to plead, work, live, and suffer for those values and truths that hold the world together under God. God promised Abraham that he would not destroy the city of Sodom if ten righteous men were found there (Gen. 18:32). We ought to do all we can to ensure that the ten righteous ones who can save a city are never lacking.--Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI), Values in a Time of Upheaval, (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2006), pg. 121.
- Let choirs sing well or not at all. Otherwise we merely confirm the majority in their conviction that the world of business, which does with such efficiency so much that never really needed doing, is the real, the adult, and the practical world; and that this ‘culture’ and ‘religion’ (horrid words both) are essentially marginal, amateurish, and rather effeminate activities.--C. S. Lewis, “Good Work and Good Works” from The World's Last Night: And Other Essays
- Any German philosopher can out obfuscate John Paul II, even on a slow day--Melinda Selmys
- "Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
- "Being killed by someone happens all the time," she said. "People are just like that online."--Gamers hired by father to 'kill' son in online games
- Who are the peacemakers? They are all those who, day after day, seek to conquer evil with good, with the strength of the truth, with the arms of prayer and of forgiveness, with honest work well-done, with scientific research that is at the service of life, with the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. The peacemakers are many, but they make not a sound. Like the yeast in dough, they cause humanity to rise according to God’s plan.--Pope Benedict XVI, Angelus, January 1, 2013
- No wonder an English bishop is supposed to have lamented: "Wherever Paul went, there were riots. Wherever I go, they serve tea."--paraphrase of N. T. Wright
- "My God," he cried, "my God. Where are you? Why can we not reach them?"
When his hands had ceased to shake he heard a voice speak to him from the tabernacle. Simultaneously, it spoke within him.
My son, I ask you to go down into the lost places. Go without fear.
"I have no strength, my Lord. I have no power to save them!"
No man can save another. Only I can save. Yet My strength is within you. My strength works most effectively in your weakness. When will you trust Me?
"What is happening, Lord? Your Church is reeling from many blows and bleeding from a million wounds."
Have no fear. Walk into the darkness and bring back souls from it. I am with you always...You are to do only this: you are to look neither to your left nor to your right. You are to go neither ahead of Me nor behind Me. Wait for me and I will act.--Michael O'Brien, Father Elijah, pg. 192
- "...and if the offender refuses to listen even to the church, let such a one be to you as a Gentile and a tax collecter." (Matt. 18:17) This sounds, at first, like a total rejection, but then we recall how Jesus treated the Gentiles and tax collectors--eating with them, pursuing them, drawing them into the circle. There might be a moment of rejection and expulsion in the process of fraternal correction...but it is only provisional and only for the sake of eventual reconciliation--Father Robert Barron, The Strangest Way, Orbis Books 2012, pg. 108.
- "You want to be a saint, Billy. But you want to be a saint on your own terms. You want glorious victories with your sword; most of all, you want victories over your personal weaknesses and faults."
"What's wrong with that?"
"It is a good desire, but it can also be a kind of idealism masking pride."
"That's too complicated for me."
"Who is the saint? The one who obeys God in his weakness, or the one who demands to have every admirable quality before he sets forth on his quest?"..."The temptation to hate yourself because you have not lived up to your ideal...is pride, and it is very dangerous."--Michael O'Brien, Father Elijah, pg. 122-123
- In fact, in 1966, during the height of the anti-Pius campaign—provoked by Rolf Hochhuth’s notorious play, The Deputy—Dietrich von Hildebrand gave a moving statement to biographer G.M. Tracy, who was trying to set the record straight:
He was an open enemy of National Socialism as early as Hitler’s 1923 Putsch, and I spoke to him often in Munich about National Socialism. During my private audience in Rome with him, after he became a Cardinal, His Eminence told me that Nazism was as opposed to Catholicism ‘as fire and water’ and added ‘they could never be reconciled.’I am overjoyed that you have undertaken a biography of this great Pope, especially because of the atrocious caricature that Hochhuth created, aided by statements of the very dubious Bishop Hudal [a German collaborator]. Hudal wrote a book in which he tried to prove that National Socialism and Christianity could get along together. This book incurred the disdain of Pius XII and Hudal wanted to avenge himself on Pius by slandering him in a completely false way to Hochhuth. It would be impossible to create a more false depiction of Pius than the one created by Hochhuth.--William Doino, Jr.
- The Christmas message is not that peace will come automatically, because Christ is born in Bethlehem; that birth in Bethlehem was the prelude to His birth in our hearts by grace and faith and love. Peace belongs only to those who will to have it. If there is no peace in the world today, it is not because Christ did not come; it is because we did not let Him in.--Archbishop Fulton Sheen (Simple Truths)
- This world in which we live needs beauty in order not to sink into despair. Beauty, like truth, brings joy to the human heart, and is that precious fruit which resists the erosion of time, which unites generations and enables them to be one in admiration. And all this through the work of your hands . . . Remember that you are the custodians of beauty in the world.--Pope Benedict XVI
- Back in my Rocky Mountain News days, I covered an ecumenical gathering in Boulder, Colo., focusing on contemplative prayer and meditation. One of the main speakers was a leader at the Nada Carmelite monastic community — part of the Spiritual Life Institute — located in Crestone, Colo., at on the western face of the Sangre de Christo mountains.
During the question-and-answer session, the mother abbess was asked why she kept insisting that her prayers and meditations were focused on the person of Jesus Christ, and not on her own spirit, her own soul, her own personality. Why, she asked, did she keep insisting that the Divine was outside of herself.
For starters, she said, the reality of the Holy Trinity and a transcendent God is at the heart of Christian theology. Deny that and you have denied the faith. Plus, she added, “I have never enjoyed dancing alone.”--Tim Mattingly
- One Christmas [a pastor] was walking down the street muttering to himself about all those hypocritical people who celebrated Christmas but were not believers. He was just working himself into a good snit when the thought occurred to him, “If that is all they have of Me, would you deny them even that?”--Mark Shea
- Suppose one reads a story of filthy atrocities in the paper. Then suppose that something turns up suggesting that the story might not be quite true, or not quite so bad as it was made out. Is one’s first feeling, ‘Thank God, even they aren’t quite so bad as that,’ or is it a feeling of disappointment, and even a determination to cling to the first story for the sheer pleasure of thinking your enemies are as bad as possible? If it is the second then it is, I am afraid, the first step in a process which, if followed to the end, will make us into devils. You see, one is beginning to wish that black was a little blacker. If we give that wish its head, later on we shall wish to see grey as black, and then to see white itself as black. Finally we shall insist on seeing everything — God and our friends and ourselves included — as bad, and not be able to stop doing it: we shall be fixed for ever in a universe of pure hatred.--C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (1952; Harper Collins 2001) 118.
- "The enemy killed the Lamb."
"You know the rest of it."
"And the Lamb overcame death."
"Yes. But first He had to die."
"Why did He have to die? Why did my wife die? Why are you covered with bruises?"
"Because we are in a real war."
"It is not right!"
"You a priest for so many years and you say that? Of course it's not right. The Cross isn't right. But our Lord took it and turned it into the great sign that the devil hates above all other signs. Each time we accept to bear that cross and be nailed to it, believing against all believing--when it's impossible any longer to believe because of our pain--that's when we defeat him. By the blood of the Lamb."--Michael O'Brien, Father Elijah, page 107
- They claim to be of the sacred tradition, but distort the Apostolic Faith to the extent of giving the impression that the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us in order to make people dress modestly.--Father George Rutler
- Already the new men are dotted here and there all over the earth. Some, as I have admitted, are still hardly recognisable: but others can be recognised. Every now and then one meets them. Their very voices and faces are different from ours: stronger, quieter, happier, more radiant. They begin where most of us leave off. They are, I say, recognisable; but you must know what to look for. They will not be very like the idea of ‘religious people’ which you have formed from your general reading. They do not draw attention to themselves. You tend to think that you are being kind to them when they are really being kind to you. They love you more than other men do, but they need you less. (We must get over wanting to be needed: in some goodish people, specially women, that is the hardest of all temptations to resist.) They will usually seem to have a lot of time: you will wonder where it comes from. When you have recognised one of them, you will recognise the next one much more easily. And I strongly suspect (but how should I know?) that they recognise one another immediately and infallibly, across every barrier of colour, sex, class, age, and even of creeds. In that way, to become holy is rather like joining a secret society. To put it at the very lowest, it must be great fun.C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (1952; Harper Collins: 2001) 223.
- Though with a scornful wonder
we see her sore oppressed,
by schisms rent asunder,
by heresies distressed,
yet saints their watch are keeping;
their cry goes up, “How long?”
And soon the night of weeping
shall be the morn of song.
Mid toil and tribulation,
and tumult of her war,
she waits the consummation
of peace forevermore;
till, with the vision glorious,
her longing eyes are blest,
and the great Church victorious
shall be the Church at rest.--The Church's One Foundation
- Bishops are human, and will err and sin in all sorts of ways. And unless one is going to dispense with organized Christianity altogether—an option neither Jesus nor the New Testament leave open for us—someone has to mess up administrating a church.--Leroy Huizenga
- Abba Lot went to see Abba Joseph and said to him, “Abba, as far as I can I say my little office, I fast a little, I pray and meditate, I live in peace and as far as I can, I purify my thoughts. What else can I do?” Then the old man stood up and stretched his hands towards heaven. His fingers became like ten lamps of fire and he said to him “If you will, you can become all flame.”
- There are a those few respectable men who honestly disbelieve because of sober philosophical doubt. They are perhaps one in ten or one in a hundred. Their doubts must be taken seriously and answered seriously. That is the task of apologetic. We do not reason with sober atheists to give them faith, for only the Holy Ghost gives faith. We reason with them to show that the objections and obstacles to faith are not grounded in reason.--John C. Wright
- I always think to myself: "I know I am awful. But how much more awful I should be without the Faith." One of the joys of Catholic life is to recognize the little sparks of good everywhere, as well as the fire of the saints.--Evelyn Waugh
- You have no idea how much nastier I would be if I was not a Catholic. Without supernatural aid I would hardly be a human being.---Evelyn Waugh
- On firm intellectual conviction but with little emotion I was admitted to the Church.--Evelyn Waugh
- We all have to become saints before we get to heaven. That is what purgatory is for. And each individual has his own peculiar form of sanctity which he must achieve or perish. It is no good my saying: "I wish I were like Joan of Arc or St. John of the Cross." I can only be St. Evelyn Waugh-after God knows what experiences in purgatory.--Evelyn Waugh
- The Roman Catholic Church has the unique power of keeping remote control over human souls which have once been part of her. G.K. Chesterton has compared this to the fisherman's line, which allows the fish the illusion of free play in the water and yet has him by the hook; in his own time the fisherman by a 'twitch upon the thread' draws the fish to land.--Evelyn Waugh
- The lot of man is ceaseless labor,
Or ceaseless idleness, which is still harder,
Or irregular labour, which is not pleasant.
I have trodden the winepress alone, and I know
That it is hard to be really useful, resigning
The things that men count for happiness, seeking
The good deeds that lead to obscurity, accepting
With equal face those that bring ignominy,
The applause of all or the love of none.
All men are ready to invest their money
But most expect dividends.
I say to you: Make perfect your will.
I say: take no thought of the harvest,
But only of proper sowing.--T. S. Eliot, The Rock
- “These hidden dynamos of prayer, the cloistered men and women, are doing more for our country than all its politicians, its labor leaders, its army and navy put together; they are atoning for the sins of us all. They are averting the just wrath of God, repairing the broken fences of those who sin and pray not, rebel and atone not. As ten just men would have saved Sodom and Gomorrah, so ten just saints can save a nation now. But so long as a citizenry is more impressed by what its cabinet does than by its chosen souls who are doing penance, the rebirth of the nation has not yet begun. The cloistered are the purest of patriots. They have not become less interested in the world since leaving it; indeed, they have become more interested in the world than ever before. But they are not concerned with whether it will buy and sell more; they care-and desparately care-whether it will be more virtuous and love God more.”
- Venerable Fulton J Sheen
- For his sake who did not reject your curious gifts, pray always for the learned, the oblique, the delicate. Let them not be quite forgotten at the Throne of God when the simple come into their kingdom.--Evelyn Waugh, Helena
- "Following Jesus means taking up one’s cross and walking in his footsteps, along a difficult path which leads not to earthly power or glory but, if necessary, to self-abandonment, to losing one’s life for Christ and the Gospel in order to save it. We are assured that this is the way to the resurrection, to true and definitive life with God. Choosing to walk in the footsteps of Jesus Christ, who made himself the Servant of all, requires drawing ever closer to him, attentively listening to his word and drawing from it the inspiration for all that we do."--Pope Benedict
- Cardinal Wojtyla of Poland, later Pope John Paul II...provided a four-point plan for the Church in those circumstances [of secularization]: “ (1) appeal to the rights of law and morality to fight the unjust attacks on its actions and institutions; (2) be a teacher above all, explaining the true faith and its applications to all spheres of life…; (3) use dramatic opportunities to express solidarity with those Catholics who are being attacked and those institutions being subverted; celebrate milestones and heroes of the faith in [our own] country; …4) strongly challenge and counter the ‘splitting from above and below’ [tactics of the state] and be ready to impose the doctrinal and practical discipline required to maintain the unity of faith.”Easy to say, hard to do. The pope won the war.--Joseph Wood
- You worry only about building up your knowledge. And what you have to build up is your soul. Then you will work as you ought -- for Christ. For him to reign in the world, there must be some people who, with their eyes fixed on heaven, seek to acquire prestige in all human activities, so that they can carry out quietly -- and effectively -- an apostolate within their professions.-- St. Josemaria Escriva: The Way
- Though I try my best to be open to the movement of the Holy Spirit in Sacred Scripture, I have to admit that the most wisdom I ingest tends to come from things said by Gandalf. I suppose there are worse faults.--BadCatholic
- I have come to understand the falsehood of all the revolutions in history: They destroy only those carriers of evil contemporary with them (and also fail, out of haste, to discriminate the carriers of good as well). And they then take to themselves as their heritage the actual evil itself, magnified still more.--Solzhenitsyn
- It is not bigotry to be certain we are right; but it is bigotry to be unable to imagine how we might possibly have gone wrong.--G. K. Chesterton
- These are the days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed except his own.--G. K. Chesterton
- Religious liberty might be supposed to mean that everybody is free to discuss religion. In practice it means that hardly anybody is allowed to mention it.--G. K. Chesterton
- The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and left untried.--G. K. Chesterton
- So far as a man may be proud of a religion rooted in humility, I am very proud of my religion; I am especially proud of those parts of it that are most commonly called superstition. I am proud of being fettered by antiquated dogmas and enslaved by dead creeds (as my journalistic friends repeat with so much pertinacity), for I know very well that it is the heretical creeds that are dead, and that it is only the reasonable dogma that lives long enough to be called antiquated.--G. K. Chesterton
- Moderate strength is shown in violence, supreme strength is shown in levity.--G. K. Chesterton
- “Show me your hands. Do they have scars from giving? Show me your feet. Are they wounded in service? Show me your heart. Have you left a place for divine love?” - Venerable Fulton J. Sheen
- McLuhan on Gilbert Keith Chesterton: "[H]e seems never to have reached any position by dialectic or doctrine, but to have enjoyed a kind of connaturality with every kind of reasonableness.”
- Study. Study in earnest. If you are to be salt and light, you need knowledge, ability.
Or do you imagine that an idle and lazy life will entitle you to receive infused knowledge?-- St. Josemaria Escriva: The Way
- I urge you, therefore, to strengthen your faith in Jesus Christ, to be authentically converted to him. He alone gives us the true life and can liberate us for all our fears and sluggishness, from all our anguish. Rediscover the roots of your existence in the baptism which you received and which makes you children of God! May Jesus Christ give you strength to live as Christians and to find ways to transmit generously to new generations what you have received from your fathers in faith!--Pope Benedict XVI
- Fight against that weakness which makes you lazy and careless in your spiritual life. Remember it might well be the beginning of lukewarmness ... and, in the words of Scripture, God will vomit the lukewarm out of his mouth.-- St. Josemaria Escriva: The Way
- Do something today that will pave the way for success tomorrow. Be faithful to what is set before you. Work hard, be diligent, be of high character and deep prayer. Be more willing to give than to take. Stay humble. Eventually, it will come.--Anonymous, from Chris Frank
- When the time comes, as it surely will, when we face that awesome moment, the final judgment, I’ve often thought, as Fulton Sheen wrote, that it is a terrible moment of loneliness. You have no advocates, you are there alone standing before God — and a terror will rip your soul like nothing you can imagine. But I really think that those in the pro-life movement will not be alone. I think there’ll be a chorus of voices that have never been heard in this world but are heard beautifully and clearly in the next world — and they will plead for everyone who has been in this movement. They will say to God, “Spare him, because he loved us!”--Congressman Henry Hyde
- Do your duty 'now', without looking back on 'yesterday', which has already passed, or worrying over 'tomorrow', which may never come for you.-- St. Josemaria Escriva: The Way
- Fight all error, but do it with good humor, patience, kindness and love. Harshness will damage your own soul and spoil the best cause.--St. John Kanty
- It’s no kindness to the atheist to let him forever believe that the religious have all the intellectual history of a WBC preacher. I mean goodness, what if he stumbles upon a Dominican? The shock would kill him.--Marc Barnes
- When I was an undergrad I came across the saying that learning a little philosophy leads you away from God, but learning a lot of philosophy leads you back. As a young man who had learned a little philosophy, I scoffed. But in later years and at least in my own case, I would come to see that it’s true.--Dr. Edward Feser
- If you find yourself intellectually convinced that there is a divine Uncaused Cause who sustains the world and you in being at every instant, and don’t find this conclusion extremely strange and moving, something that leads you to a kind of reverence, then I daresay you haven’t understood it.--Dr. Edward Feser
- God Himself could come down from on high and put before such people [New Atheists] an airtight ontological proof of His existence while parting the Red Sea, and they’d still insist that what really motivated these arguments was a desire to rationalize His moral prejudices. And that their own continued disbelief was just a matter of, you know, following the evidence where it leads.--Dr. Edward Feser
- "Why do you worry? What do you fear? You have been working for God for all these years--do you think He will let you outdo Him in generosity?"
"I...I've done very little," Cassius said, frowning at the thought that his words might be taken for false modesty. "I have lost people through clumsiness, through temper, through indifference...I've missed opportunities...I wanted to establish a new center in Neapolis, but couldn't...I wanted..."
"What does it matter what you wanted?" Paul interrupted. "What matters is the will of the Lord. Only the effort is ours; the success is His. You've always been a great one for wanting to do things and do them your own way."
"He's been working hard," Naomi pleaded.
Paul looked from one to the other, beaming. "Of course he has," he said, "but he's so ambitious that he has too little joy in him, and how can you spread the tidings of joy unless joy is in yourself? The Way itself is joy."--Louis de Wohl, The Glorious Folly, Ch. 35
- I do not believe that the solution to our problem is simply to elect the right people. The important thing is to establish a political climate of opinion which will make it politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing. Unless it is politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing, the right people will not do the right thing either, or if they try, they will shortly be out of office.--Milton Friedman
- Frodo: I can't do this, Sam.
Sam: I know. It's all wrong. By rights we shouldn't even be here. But we are. It's like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger, they were. And sometimes you didn't want to know the end. Because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end, it's only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you. That meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn't. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something.
Frodo: What are we holding onto, Sam?
Sam: That there's some good in this world, Mr. Frodo... and it's worth fighting for.
- I assume the average Catholic does not regard the Church as merely one denomination among many, all of whom are competing in a marketplace. It does not look like a marketplace to us. It looks like a schoolroom with a school marm. Some of the students claim, truly or falsely, to have caught the teacher cheating, or deranged, and now they want to use her lecture notes and nothing else, note she wrote in happier days before her derangement, and use them to teach the class. Unlike a market, the students do not get a vote on what they learn. Hence the dispute is not over whose ideas are correct (which the sophomores are in no position to judge) the dispute is over who has the right to teach and be heard.--John C. Wright
- The banking scandals, rate fixing and resignations may have a silver lining if they awaken us to a fact about which we have been in denial for decades. Morality matters. Not just laws, regulations, supervisory authorities, committees of inquiry, courts, fines and punishments, but morality: the inner voice of self-restraint that tells us not to do something even when it is to our advantage, even though it may be legal and even if there is a fair chance it won’t be found out. Because it’s wrong. Because it’s dishonourable. Because it is a breach of trust. We are reaching the endgame of a failed experiment: society’s attempt to live without a shared moral code.--Rabbi Jonathan Sacks
- Not to give way to anger. Not to abandon charity. To rest one's hope in God. To fall often to prayer. To love chastity. Not to cherish bitterness, And never to despair of God's mercy.--excerpt, The Rule of St. Benedict
- "The difficulty of explaining ‘why I am a Catholic’ is that there are ten thousand reasons all amounting to one reason: that Catholicism is true.” – G. K. Chesterton
- "The Church is intolerant in principle because she believes; she is tolerant in practice because she loves. The enemies of the Church are tolerant in principle because they do not believe; they are intolerant in practice because they do not love." -Rev. Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange O.P
- For Whovians demand signs and Geeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Whos and folly to Geeks, but to those who are called, both Whos and Geeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.--Mark Shea.
- “There is one mediator between Protestant and Catholic: the man C.S. Lewis.”--Anonymous
- "God does not abandon us, but he does allow us to be tried. Just as the juice of the grape has to ferment in order to become a fine wine, so too man needs purifications and transformations; they are dangerous for him, because they present an opportunity for him to fall, and yet they are indispensable as paths on which he comes to himself and to God. Love is always a process involving purifications, renunciations, and painful transformations of ourselves - and that is how it is a journey to maturity." Pope Benedict, Jesus of Nazareth vol. 1 (p. 162).
- ...you know all the lies. People can convince themselves of all kinds of things. People used to convince themselves that Jews and blacks weren’t actually human. They’ve progressed beyond that. Now they’ve convinced themselves that humans aren’t even human.--Thomas L. McDonald
- Every bishop is given a crosier upon his ordination to the episcopacy. A crosier is a shepherd's staff. It is a six to seven foot long staff that a shepherd uses to beat the crap out of wolves. That's your job. Beating the crap out of the wolves - not killing all of the sheep yourself so that there is nothing left for the wolves to eat.--Vincenzo, Sancte Pater
- “Jesus promised his disciples three things—that they would be completely fearless, absurdly happy, and in constant trouble.”
― G.K. Chesterton
- I have often affirmed my conviction that the true apology of Christian faith, the most convincing demonstration of its truth against every denial, are the saints, and the beauty that the faith has generated. Today, for faith to grow, we must lead ourselves and the persons we meet to encounter the saints and to enter into contact with the Beautiful.—Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI), "The Feeling ofThings, the Contemplation of Beauty,” presented at the Rimini Meeting of Communion and Liberation, August 2002.
- "Nature never repeats herself, and the possibilities of one human soul will never be found in another." Elizabeth Cady Stanton
- “Whatever we do, and however strongly we feel, we do it charitably, we do it civilly. We don’t judge the motives of other people. We just try, in a confident, peaceful, inviting way, to make our position felt, to invite other people to respect it.” –Met. Archbishop Timothy Cardinal Dolan
- Pope John Paul II taught us that authentic freedom consists in doing what one ought to do, and not what one wants to do.--Dr. Gerard Nadal
- ...a society without law would be a society without rights. Law is the condition of love.--Pope Benedict XVI's Letter to Seminarians, 18 October 2010, the Feast of Saint Luke the Evangelist
- Big Government means small citizens--Mark Steyn.
- Everything that God wanted to tell us about himself and about his love he placed in the Heart of Jesus, and by means of that Heart he has told us everything. We find ourselves before an inscrutable mystery. In Jesus’ Heart we read the eternal divine plan of the world’s salvation. It is a plan of love.--Bl. John Paul II, Address at Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Sunday, 6 June 1999
- No one today would accept this statement from any public servant: ‘I am personally opposed to human slavery and racism but will not impose my personal conviction in the legislative arena.’ Likewise, none of us should accept this statement from any public servant: ‘I am personally opposed to abortion but will not impose my personal conviction in the legislative arena.’--Bishop Michael Saltarelli
- ...And everything else will then turn out to be unimportant and inessential except this: father, child, and love. And then, looking at the simplest things, we will all say, Could we have not learned this long ago? Has this not always been embedded in everything that is?-Pope John Paul II
- God first willed the world--willing and loving are the same with him--and the world budded forth and grew, as an outcome of his act of love. The world exists because God loved it; it continues because God continues to love it...--Charles Journet, The Meaning of Grace, trans. A. V. Littledale, (New York: Scepter Publications, 1996,) 18.
- "It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics. There are no 'ordinary' people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilisations -- these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whome we joke with, work with, marry, snub and exploit -- immortal horrors or everlasting splendours. This does not mean that we are to be perpetually solemn. We must play. But our merriment must be of that kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously -- no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption. And our charity must be a real and costly love, with deep feeling for the sins in spite of which we love the sinner -- no mere tolerance or indulgence which parodies love as flippancy parodies merriment." --C. S. Lewis, from The Weight of Glory.
- This sacred Council has several aims in view: it desires to impart an ever increasing vigor to the Christian life of the faithful; to adapt more suitably to the needs of our own times those institutions which are subject to change; to foster whatever can promote union among all who believe in Christ; to strengthen whatever can help to call the whole of mankind into the household of the Church...--Sacrosanctum Concilium 1
- “A heroic martyrdom is fast, simple, glorious, isn't it? Blood washes away all ambiguities. Death breaks the intolerable tensions. You would like us to braid a rope and drive the moneychangers from the temple, then go to the cross...I tell you we are going to the cross. But it is not our right to hasten that day. We must work while the light lasts. We must strengthen what remains. This is the long and lonely martyrdom. It is the most difficult of all..."--Stato, Father Elijah, 359.
- Paul, we are inside of it, though we feel outside. Hold the ground that has been given to you. Do not try to fight on other fronts. If you abandon the very one that has been given to you, no matter how small, the war may be lost. Do not be a success too young. Go without baggage across the desert. Poverty and silence are the natural abode of truth...--G. Rouault, Father Elijah, 367.
- One has to go through the repentance preached by John the Baptist, to prepare for the coming of Jesus at Christmas.--Mannino Wisdom
- The Church needs both the men who act and the men who think; and since with us everything pushes to action, wisdom demands that we cultivate rather the powers of reflection. And this is the duty alike of true patriots and faithful Catholics. All are working to develop our boundless material resources; let a few at least labor to develop man. The millions are building cities, reclaiming wildernesses, and bring forth from the earth its buried treasures; let at least a remnant cherish the ideal, cultivate the beautiful, and seek to inspire the love of moral and intellectual excellence.--the first Bishop of Peoria:
- "Faith transcends reason because divine truth is not only higher, but also wider than the human mind, and the rationalist in his haste for premature simplification always tends to shut his eyes to one aspect of the truth and to seek a false harmony of thought by the sacrifice of an essential element of reality."-Christopher Dawson
- For the lover, only excess is sufficient, and as Augustine said, only the lover sings. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word burst into song."--Dr. Regis Martin
- Augustine’s audience by contrast, would be told repeatedly that even the baptized Christian must remain an invalid: like the wounded man found near death by the wayside in the Parable of the Good Samaritan, his life had been saved by the rite of Baptism; but he must be content to endure, for the rest of his life, a prolonged and precarious convalescence in the ‘Inn’ of the Church. For to Augustine, man’s nature was at a nadir of uncertainty: and it would be cured, in an equally distant future, only by transformation so total and so glorious that, in its light, the least symptom of man’s present collapse must always be regarded as a cause of profound sadness.--Peter Brown, Augustine of Hippo; A Biography.
- ...in terms of how power is exercised in the real world, popes obviously matter. If you don't believe that, there are some former Soviet kingpins in Warsaw and Moscow you might want to consult about whether John Paul II made a difference in their lives.--John Allen
- When the histories were written, it became known that the stars from Bagpipe were particularly adept at making a pain in the ass of themselves for the bad guys.
There were common threads. Something about being persistent. Spouting riddles. Praying Rosaries all the time. Getting married at the drop of a hat or on the top of a grave, as well as siring well-mannered children willing to jump out of planes while holding puppies.
Eating squirrels if need be. Always buying shoes with thick treads and real, honest-to-goodness stitching because you never knew when the call would come to start walking.
In other words, they were Catholics.
-House of Gold by Bud MacFarlane Jr. http://www.catholicity.com/
- There are not 100 people who hate the Catholic Church; But there are millions who hate what they believe the Catholic Church to be.- Archbishop Fulton Sheen
- As Congressman Mike Pence put it, “To those who say we should simply focus on fiscal issues, I say you would not be able to print enough money in a thousand years to pay for the government you would need if the traditional family collapses.”
- How often we wish that God would make show himself stronger, that he would strike decisively, defeating evil and creating a better world. All ideologies of power justify themselves in exactly this way, they justify the destruction of whatever would stand in the way of progress and the liberation of humanity. We suffer on account of God’s patience. And yet, we need his patience. God, who became a lamb, tells us that the world is saved by the Crucified One, not by those who crucified him. The world is redeemed by the patience of God. It is destroyed by the impatience of man.--Pope Benedict XVI, Homily at inauguration as Pope, April 24, 2005