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Yes and No to Power

by Bishop Robert Barron . September 22, 2019 .

Our first and second readings for this weekend beautifully sum up the Church’s classical attitude toward those in power. I’ve long argued that the most influential philosopher of the nineteenth century was Friedrich Nietzsche. For this very influential and quirky German thinker, power is the fundamental reality—a perspective that has…

A Coin, A Sheep, A Son

by Bishop Robert Barron . September 15, 2019 .

Our Gospel for today gives us three classic parables, each one exploring the notion that is at the very heart of the spiritual life—namely, that God is the one who searches for us. Why would God fret over one little soul? Why would he bother? Well, it’s his nature. It’s what he does. More to it, as we see in the coin, the sheep, and the son, recovering a lost soul is what he rejoices in doing.

The Cost of Discipleship

by Bishop Robert Barron . September 8, 2019 .

Our Gospel for today is breathtaking, first for what it says about Jesus and second for what it says about us. Jesus compels a choice the way no other figure does. Either he is who he says he is, or he is a bad man. The bland middle way that he is a great teacher simply won’t do. In the presence of the one who makes such an extraordinary claim, we have to make a decision.

Ignatian Detachment

by Bishop Robert Barron . September 1, 2019 .

It was a particular joy for me to visit the sites associated with St. Ignatius of Loyola on a recent film trip. But the most moving locale was a little church in Manresa built around the cave where the young Ignatius spent about nine months preparing himself spiritually for his…

The Narrow Gate

by Bishop Robert Barron . August 26, 2019 .

The topic of the Gospel for today—the question of how many will be saved—stirs up such passionate feelings in people, and there is such enormous disagreement about it. Luke tells us that Jesus is making his way to Jerusalem and someone asks, “Lord, will only a few people be saved?”…

Fate of the Prophet

by Bishop Robert Barron . August 18, 2019 .

Our readings for today develop a theme that is uncomfortable. Authentically religious people, authentically spiritual people, will almost always be opposed. The logic behind this is simple and unanswerable: we live in a world gone wrong, a world turned upside down; therefore, when someone comes speaking the truth to us, we will think that they are crazy and dangerous. Jesus’ word is meant to burn things up, to reduce things to cinders, to clear things out. A get-along attitude is never what Jesus is calling for. I know that we are uneasy with this idea, but the Bible isn’t. To love is to will the good of the other. Therefore, to love necessarily involves passionate opposition to what works evil in the other. True love destroys the false forms of order and community in order for the true community to emerge.

The Hero’s Journey

by Bishop Robert Barron . August 11, 2019 .

The Jungian psychologist Jordan Peterson is, in many ways, an early twenty-first century version of Joseph Campbell, and perhaps the central archetype that they both explored is that of the hero’s journey. As both Campbell and Peterson have recognized, the Bible is a treasure trove of hero’s journey stories. But…

Bigger Barns or Treasure in Heaven?

by Bishop Robert Barron . August 4, 2019 .

All three of our readings for this weekend speak of a primordial spiritual truth—that is to say, the need to detach oneself from the goods of this world. This has nothing to do with hatred of this world or of matter or the flesh; all of that sort of dualism is repugnant to the Bible. It has to do with a “wearing lightly” of this world and its goods, even as those goods are acknowledged and celebrated.

Abba Father, Bring us Jesus

by Bishop Robert Barron . July 24, 2016 .

The Our Father, the Lord’s Prayer, is a request for Christ. As we examine this most famous prayer line by line, we see it's all about Jesus. That He might come and have communion with us is precisely what we hope for when we cry out to "our Abba who art in heaven."

Martha, Mary, and the Attitude of Discipleship

by Bishop Robert Barron . July 21, 2019 .

Although the little story of Martha and Mary has been interpreted throughout the centuries as a parable dealing with the “active” and “contemplative” approach to the spiritual life, it can be read as Christ's invitation to all people to partake in his inner circle of discipleship. Christ overturned the social conventions of his time by summoning all people to discipleship. Thus, we must remove all barriers to discipleship for all people.

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