Fr. John Bartunek, LC

Fr. John Bartunek, LC, S.Th.D, received his BA in History from Stanford University in 1990. He comes from an evangelical Christian background and became a member of the Catholic Church in 1991. After college, he worked as a high school history teacher, drama director, and baseball coach. He then spent a year as a professional actor in Chicago before entering the religious Congregation of the Legionaries of Christ in 1993. He was ordained a Catholic priest in 2003 and earned his doctorate in moral theology in 2010. He provided spiritual support on the set of Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ” while researching the 2005 Catholic best seller, “Inside the Passion”–the only authorized, behind-the-scene explanation of the film. Fr. John has contributed news commentary regarding religious issues on NBC, CNN, Fox, and the BBC. He also served as the English-language press liaison for the Vatican’s 2005 Synod of Bishops on the Eucharist. His most widely known book is called: “The Better Part: A Christ-Centered Resource for Personal Prayer”. His most recent books are “Spring Meditations”, “Seeking First the Kingdom: 30 Meditations on How to Love God with All Your Heart, Soul, Mind and Strength”, and “Answers: Catholic Advice for Your Spiritual Questions”. Fr. John currently splits his time between Michigan (where he continues his writing apostolate and serves as a confessor and spiritual director at the Queen of the Family Retreat Center) and Rome, where he teaches theology at Regina Apostolorum. His online, do-it-yourself retreats are available at RCSpirituality.org, and he answers questions about the spiritual life at SpiritualDirection.com.

Articles By Fr. John Bartunek, LC

Reconciliation

RECONCILIATION Dear Father John, During the sacrament of reconciliation, they say that the priest is “in persona Christi”, meaning, if I understand correctly, that it is really Christ that is acting through him. If so, how come the priest cannot understand if I say my sins in my own language that he doesn’t know? Surely

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Where to Seek the Truth (Part II of II)

Where to Seek the Truth Part II of II Editor’s Note: Where to seek the Truth (Part I of II) we looked at the Church’s desire to help us find the truth, the yearning of the human heart to know more about God and the yearning to find and discern the food we need for

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Where to Seek the Truth (Part I of II)

Where to Seek the Truth Part I of II Dear Father John, I want to learn more about God but I don’t know how to tell good teaching from bad. Where can I find out the truth? That’s a very good question and I would like to begin by quoting from something that St. John

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Recurring Nightmares; Spiritual Attacks

RECURRING NIGHTMARES/SPIRITUAL ATTACKS Dear Father John, When I was a child I used to have recurrent nightmares about snakes, rats, wild dogs and the feeling of choking myself. A priest came home and told my family to pray every night before sleeping, and that it would hopefully help me. It worked. And now that I’ve

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Freedom in Christ

How Can We Know the Way to God? (Part II of II)

Editor’s Note: In Part I, we looked at the effects of a darkened mind and the coming of the Light. Today, we will reflect on the deepest questions and talk about the fullest answer to them. Here is the particular issue we are examining: Dear Father John, I know the apostles ask Jesus this same

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How Can We Know the Way to God? (Part I of II)

Dear Father John, I know the apostles ask Jesus this same question: How can we know the way? But, seriously, what if we want to go to God but we don’t know how. How can we know the way? EMOTIONS PROVIDE THE energy we need to take action in life. But they need to be

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Reading Non-Canonized Books of the Bible

Dear Father John, I recently came back to the Church and one of the things that has really awakened me, other than the “Catholics Come Home” book, was the works of Dr. Peter Kreeft. I have found that in my ‘older’ age, theology is something that I am really enjoying reading and thinking about. My

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Bridge to Eternity: Retreat Guide on Sacrament of Holy Orders

BRIDGE TO ETERNITY: A RETREAT GUIDE ON THE SACRAMENT OF HOLY ORDERS The newest Retreat Guide from RC Spirituality, Bridge to Eternity: A Retreat Guide on the Sacrament of Holy Orders, is now available at www.RCSpirituality.org. For many years, my religious order followed a tradition of ordaining our members to the priesthood on Christmas Eve.

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Forming Our Emotions (Part II of II)

Forming Our Emotions (Part II of II) Editor’s Note: In part I, we introduced the concept of educating or forming emotions and looked at the state of our emotions in the purgative way. Today, we will explore the differences in our emotions while we are in the two subsequent ways: the illuminative and unitive ways.

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Forming Our Emotions (Part I of II)

Dear Father John, My reactions to things seem out of control. For example, when I am cut off in traffic by another driver, I often get “road rage.” And, I get very sad when people reject my good intentions. There doesn’t seem to be any basis for it, nothing in my childhood or upbringing or

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