Dear Father

Dear Father | Fasting helps expedite our inner reform

Msgr. Matthew Mitas

Does the Eucharistic fast begin an hour before the start of Mass, or an hour before one actually receives Communion? Why do we fast before Communion, anyway? 

Catholics are asked to fast for an hour before receiving Holy Communion. In practical terms, on a typical Sunday, Communion is distributed about 40 minutes after Mass starts and it takes, on average, 20 minutes to go from your front door to the front door of church. So, you could eat breakfast right before leaving for church and still fulfill the legal requirements for the eucharistic fast.

DEAR FATHER | Catholic Church allows cremation, but prefers burials

What does the Church teach on cremation? Has this teaching remained the same? If not, why the change? 

In the days of the Roman Empire, cremation was a common practice. One of the few exceptions to this practice was people of the Jewish faith. They held fast to their custom of burying the bodies of the dead.

DEAR FATHER | When saints intercede for a specific need

Msgr. Matthew Mitas

How are patron saints chosen?

DEAR FATHER | Allow the Holy Spirit to guide you in reading the Bible

Father John Mayo

What is a good way to begin reading the Bible?

All of us probably have a Bible somewhere at home. It sits, quietly calling us whenever we see it or think to pick it up and to read its Good News.

Before reading it, examine it to make sure it is a Catholic Bible. If it isn't, some books might be missing that the Catholic Church accepts but other denominations of Christianity don't.

DEAR FATHER | Final Judgment to come only at the end of the world

Msgr. Matthew Mitas

What is the ‘rapture?’ What do Catholics believe about the Last Judgment?

DEAR FATHER | Adoration is a time to concentrate solely on the presence of Jesus

Father John Mayo

What is Eucharistic Adoration? What are proper behaviors and proper ways to spend time at Eucharistic Adoration? 

One story told about St. John Vianney, the saintly pastor of Ars in France, is that he often saw a farmer sit in the back of the parish church. The saint took notice that the farmer would spend long periods of time there before the Eucharist. Finally one day, the saint asked him what he did during his time of adoration. The farmer simply responded, "I look at Him and He looks at me."

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