Columns

From the category archives: Fr. Robert Barron

Fr. Robert Barron

Congar's journals give insider's view of Vatican council

Fr. Robert Barron

July 16, 2012

One of the most theologically fascinating and just plain entertaining books I've read in a long time is Yves Congar's My Journal of the Council. Catholics of a certain age will recognize the name, but I'm afraid that most Catholics under the age of 50 might be entirely unaware of the massive contribution made by Congar, a Dominican priest and certainly one of the three or four most important Catholic theologians of the 20th century.

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Future priests must be filled with the fire of New Evangelization

Fr. Robert Barron

July 2, 2012

Recently it was announced that I have been named the new rector-president of Mundelein Seminary, my alma mater and one of the largest seminaries in the United States. I believe that one reason Cardinal Francis George chose me for this position is that I've been working the past several years in the evangelization of the culture.

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Bullying reveals a failure to turn boys into adults

Fr. Robert Barron

April 30, 2012

It is difficult indeed to watch the new documentary Bully without experiencing both an intense sadness and a feeling of helplessness. The film opens with the heartbreaking ruminations of a father whose son committed suicide after being brutally bullied by his classmates.

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Many Catholics leave the Church for correctable reasons

Fr. Robert Barron

April 23, 2012

I saw an advance copy of a survey by William Byron and Charles Zech, which will appear in the April 30 edition of America magazine. It was conducted at the request of David O'Connell, the bishop of Trenton, and its focus was simple: it endeavoured to discover why Catholics have left the Church.

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Jesus' Palm Sunday entry fulfills prophets

Fr. Robert Barron

April 2, 2012

The texts that Christians typically read on Palm Sunday have become so familiar that they probably don't sense their properly revolutionary power. But no first-century Jew would have missed the excitement and danger implicit in the coded language of the accounts describing Jesus' entry into Jerusalem just a few days before his death.

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Christ comes to clean the temple of your life

Fr. Robert Barron

March 26, 2012

Artistic representations of the Ten Commandments often depict two stone tablets on which there are two tables of inscriptions. This portrayal follows from a classical division of the commandments in which there are two specific categories – those that order humanity's relationship with God and those that order human relationships with one another.

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Stop talking about evangelization: Do it!

Fr. Robert Barron

March 12, 2012

As I write this column, I am embarking on a trip to Australia with the Word on Fire team. We're heading halfway around the globe at the invitation of the Australian Catholic University, and my team will be with me to film the events. My intention is to produce a documentary on the new evangelization as it is actually practised.

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Theologian razes rapper's viral rant

Fr. Robert Barron

February 20, 2012

Every once in a while, a video unexpectedly becomes an Internet sensation, garnering attention all over the place and spreading like wildfire through the virtual world.

Recently, a phenomenon of this type has emerged in the form of a slickly produced video of a 20-something-year-old man in a leather jacket half rapping, half speaking a poem about Jesus and religion – more specifically how the former came to abolish the latter (Jesus vs religion at www.youtube.com/watch?v=1IAhDGYlpqY).

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Radical rants miss what is really being said

Fr. Robert Barron

February 13, 2012

In my years as an observer of and commentator upon things religious, I've become rather accustomed to radical positions. There is just something about religion that can bring out the irrational in both its advocates and opponents. For the most part, therefore, over-the-top opinion pieces and Internet commentary just roll off my back, but occasionally something comes along that is so egregious and indefensible that I sit up and take notice. This happened twice recently when I read editorials in the pages of the two major newspapers in my hometown.

Neil Steinberg, a columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times, who over the years has made eminently plain his animosity toward religion, chimed in on the Obama administration's recent dictate that all insurance plans in the United States, including those used by Catholic institutions, must include provisions for contraception, sterilization and certain abortifacient drugs, all of which are repugnant to Catholic morality.

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Unbridled joy invites others to the Lord

Fr. Robert Barron

February 6, 2012

One of the great icons in the Catholic Church today is Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan of New York making his way up the aisle to commence Sunday Mass at St. Patrick's Cathedral.

While the congregation belts out the opening hymn, the good archbishop thumps his episcopal crozier on the ground, beams at all and sundry, kisses babies, embraces young and old, calls out the names of friends he recognizes and, generally speaking, spreads good cheer in every direction.

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