Do We Need Suffering and What Is Its Purpose?

Do We Need Suffering and What Is Its Purpose?

In suffering, we all agree on one point—we don't like it. But there are many disagreements on how to avoid suffering, and what to do when it inevitably catches up with us.

Trusting God with Unshakable Confidence

Trusting God with Unshakable Confidence

Fr. Spitzer answers the question, "How can I trust in God with unshakable confidence?" Trusting in the Lord can be difficult, but one must abandon themselves to Divine Providence. When trust seems just too hard and if one is just too tired, Fr. Spitzer encourages one to pray these words, "I give up, Lord. You take care of it."

Easter and the Science of Hope

Easter and the Science of Hope

The following article was written by Brother Guy Consolmagno SJ, Director of the the Vatican Observatory and President of the Vatican Observatory Foundation. The article first appeared in The Tablet (April 4 2020 issue), followed by the Vatican Observatory’s blog, Sacred Space Astronomy. Republished with permission.

Why the Cross?

Why the Cross?

There is a story told of a little boy who comes running to his mother exclaiming joyfully, “Momma, look what I found for you!” He is clutching a beautiful rose in his little fist, and the mother sees instantly that his hand and wrists are scratched and bleeding. No thorns were going to stop him from obtaining this treasure for his mother!

Why Does God Let Bad Things Happen to Good People?

Why Does God Let Bad Things Happen to Good People?

It often happens that people use evil in the world as an argument against the very existence of God. Bluntly, if God is good, how can it be that a child gets cancer? How can it be that a young mother dies, or that a friend becomes paralyzed? Why do bad things happen to good people?

Fr. Spitzer on Why Some Miracles are Denied

Fr. Spitzer on Why Some Miracles are Denied

How could God allow that tragedy? Why didn’t He save her? I’ve been praying, why haven’t I been healed? 

A Strange Anointing: Glory in Suffering

A Strange Anointing: Glory in Suffering

When God first began teaching me about suffering, I was a young, non-Catholic, and found the whole subject completely depressing. As a rule, most non-Catholics have no theology of suffering. I, personally, had no handle on the glory of suffering, and using those two words in the same sentence seemed, well, stupid, honestly. I wanted the Gospel to be health and wealth and prosperity.My analytical mind works at extremes, and I began frantically planning for the worst case scenario, imagining the innumerable excruciating ways one could be "crucified with Christ" (Galatians 2:20).

Since I was a Bible geek, it was Revelation 2:8-10 that God used to confront me with my fear, as the church in Smyrna was also in danger of the fear of suffering. Jesus personally encourages them in the midst of severe persecution and poverty.

Fulton Sheen’s Last ‘Good Friday’ Homily: Spectators On and About the Cross

Fulton Sheen’s Last ‘Good Friday’ Homily: Spectators On and About the Cross

In 1979, a large crowd gathered around the church of St. Agnes in New York to hear the wisdom of Fulton Sheen in the last Good Friday homily that he preached.

Why Offering It Up Is Countercultural

Why Offering It Up Is Countercultural

I’ve often struggled with the concept of offering it up. If you’re a cradle Catholic, you’ve probably heard it from your parents or grandparents whenever the going gets tough. Sprain your knee? Offer it up. Have a bad day at school? Offer it up. Have to sit through a boring visit at your great Aunt Mildred’s house? You better offer that up too!

St. Ignatius on Overcoming Desolation

St. Ignatius on Overcoming Desolation

For St. Ignatius of Loyola, at least in the beginning stages, the enemy’s tactic is to bring us into desolation, to bring us to despair and thereby break our resolve to persevere in the Christian life. Ignatius offers a series of “rules,” or principles, which can help us work against this depressing and downward movement of desolation.

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