The Natural Law
by Bishop Robert Barron . July 15, 2007 .
What the church calls "the natural law" is, as Moses suggests in our first reading, close to us, in fact, written on our hearts. Thomas Aquinas said that this natural, moral law is a reflection of the eternal law of God and is, in turn, the ground for all of our positive laws. When the relationship between God's law, the moral law, and political law is lost, our society suffers.
A New Creation
by Bishop Robert Barron . April 8, 2007 .
Easter is the dawn of a new creation. St. John tells us that Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early on the morning of the first day of the week. This is meant to call to mind the first day of creation, when God said, "Let there be light" and brought order out of chaos. From the meaninglessness of death, God brings eternal life. This is the central and revolutionary message of Easter.
The Burning Bush
by Bishop Robert Barron . March 11, 2007 .
Moses sees a bush that burns but is not consumed. This is a lovely symbolic expression of the way God relates to the world. The closer God gets, the more we become radiant with his presence. God's proximity does not mean our destruction or the compromising of our integrity; rather it is the means by which we become fully ourselves.
The Father in Faith
by Bishop Robert Barron . March 4, 2007 .
Abraham was chosen by God as the founder of a people who would be the means by which God would save the world. His great mark is faith, that is to say, trust. Faith is what Adam and Eve couldn't muster (they grasped at godliness) and from this followed the agony of the world. God commenced a rescue operation by setting Abraham in quest of a promised land.
The Five Act Drama
by Bishop Robert Barron . July 16, 2006 .
For the next several weeks, we are going to be reading from Paul's magnificent letter to the Ephesians. In our passage for today, we learn that we are situated within the context of a great theodrama, written and directed by God, and designed to lead us to eternal life. The Biblical drama has five acts: creation, the fall, the formation of Israel, Jesus Christ, and the Church. We read the Scriptures in order to discern the contours of that drama and, more importantly, our place within it.
The ‘De Profundis’ Prayer
by Bishop Robert Barron . June 25, 2006 .
Psalm 130 begins with the words, "out of the depths, I have cried to you, O Lord." Throughout the great tradition, the prayer ""de profundis,"" (out of the depths) has been one of the most powerful expressions of our reliance upon God. When our lives have bottomed out, when we are lost and at the end of our strength, we turn to God. The cry of the apostles in the boat, as the waves crash over the side and threaten to drown them, is a New Testament example of this prayer. Do you need to pray it today?
God Is Love
by Bishop Robert Barron . June 11, 2006 .
On the feast of the Trinity, we reflect on the uniquely Christian definition of God: God is love. Love is not something that God does, or an attribute that God has; love is what God is. This means that God must be a play between lover, beloved, and love--between Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
The Da Vinci Code (Part 2 of 2)
by Bishop Robert Barron . May 28, 2006 .
This week I discuss two more themes that emerge in the Da Vinci Code: the Gnostic Gospels and anti-Catholicism. Much of the storyline of the Da Vinci Code flows from the controversial Gnostic tellings of the life of Jesus. These are, in fact, far less historically reliable than the canonical Gospels--not to mention less theologically sound. And the book as a whole should be classed in the genre of anti-Catholic screed. We shouldn't be hysterical about American anti-Catholicism, but we also shouldn't be naive about it. I promise that this is my last word about the Da Vinci Code! Next week we're back to the Scriptures.
The Da Vinci Code (Part 1 of 2)
by Bishop Robert Barron . May 21, 2006 .
I don't like departing from the Scriptures in these homilies, but the appearance of the movie based upon the wildly popular novel The Da Vinci Code warrants a response. The central claim of the book--that Jesus is not divine--stands directly opposed to the central and defining claim of the Church. The Da Vinci Code argues that the divinity of Jesus was a fourth-century invention. Nothing could be further from the truth. This week and next, I will address this question and some others that arise from the Da Vinci Code.