Paste your Google Webmaster Tools verification code here
Sign Up for our Free Daily Email Updates
Catholic Spiritual Direction

Gethsemane’s Night and the Hope of Christian Prayer

Gathsemene iStock_000013014358Small copy

Gethsemane: Those who enter into this hidden garden of prayer with fear of the Lord and right reverence are permitted to overhear part of the Son’s conversation with the Father in secret.  Extending the blessing He offered at the Last Supper, Christ offered perfect praise with bold confidence in the Father while cherishing everything about his human existence, especially His friends.  He was vigilant that they should not... Read More

Distractions at Mass – Part I of II

December 10, 2012 by  
Filed under Eucharist/Mass, Fr. Bartunek

483 April 14 Priest Mass Feature

Dear Father John, I hate to admit this, but I still get distracted at Mass. I mean, I love Mass! I go almost every day! I believe in it, I look forward to it… But I still get distracted during Mass. I really wish I didn’t – I want to worship God perfectly, like we’re supposed to. Can you help me? As long as we are human, we will be battling distractions. Even the Catechism makes this clear: “The habitual difficulty... Read More

Why do Catholics attend church more often than Protestants?

September 24, 2012 by  
Filed under Eucharist/Mass, Fr. Bartunek, Sacraments

Jesus-Eucharist-Mass Featured

Dear Father John, can you help me understand and explain why Catholics go to Church so much more than Protestants (as with daily communicants)? Here is the short answer to this question: Catholics go to Mass daily because of the Eucharist. Protestants and evangelicals, with very rare exceptions (e.g. some of our faithful Anglican friends), believe neither in the abiding, Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist, nor in the sacrificial... Read More

Who can receive Holy Communion?

May 13, 2012 by  
Filed under Eucharist/Mass, Fr. Bartunek, Liturgy, Mass

Jesus-Eucharist-Mass Featured

Dear Father John, It is my understanding that only Catholics who are in the state of grace may receive Holy Communion. I know that only God really knows the state of a person’s soul. I am also aware that there have been hurts inflicted by very fallible and imperfect members of the Church that may prevent a person from fully and outwardly embracing the Church. If a person is not a member of the Catholic Church, but believes... Read More

Christ’s Last Supper – “Take and Eat…” What did Jesus really mean?

Jesus-Eucharist-Mass Featured

On Holy Thursday, we celebrate Jesus’ Last Supper before his death. On that night,” He said to them, ‘I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer'” (Luke 22:15). “And he took bread, and when he had given thanks he broke it and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.’ And likewise the cup after supper, saying,... Read More

Is Sunday Mass still an obligation? – Part II of II

January 24, 2011 by  
Filed under Church Teaching, Eucharist/Mass, Fr. Bartunek, Sacraments

Dear Father John, The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that it is a grave sin to miss our Sunday Obligation unless excused for a serious reason (CCC 2181). Our parish priests and our RCIA team have always taught the same. However, recently I heard someone from the diocese say that it is never a mortal sin to miss Sunday’s Mass; that the Bishops of the United States have relaxed the old rule and if you miss Sunday’s... Read More

Is Sunday Mass still an obligation? – Part I of II

January 17, 2011 by  
Filed under Church Teaching, Eucharist/Mass, Fr. Bartunek, Sacraments

Dear Father John, the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that it is a grave sin to miss our Sunday Obligation unless excused for a serious reason (CCC 2181). Our parish priests and our RCIA team have always taught the same. However, recently I heard someone from the diocese say that it is never a mortal sin to miss Sunday’s Mass; that the Bishops of the United States have relaxed the old rule and if you miss Sunday’s... Read More