Dear Father

DEAR FATHER | Act of Contrition gets to the heart of confession

Is confession valid if the priest doesn't hear your Act of Contrition? 

We might remember being told as we grew up that we need to apologize to someone for something we did. Out of personal pride or perhaps anger at what they did to us, our apology was halfhearted at best. We said we were sorry, but in our heart we really weren't, and the way we said our apology most likely reflected our state of mind and heart.

DEAR FATHER | Examples of baptism of desire show more than one way to receive graces

Jesus tells Nicodemus at the beginning of St. John's Gospel, "Amen, amen, I say to you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit" (John 3:5).

DEAR FATHER | Seeing the Trinity in daily life helps us understand the mystery

The Blessed Trinity is the central mystery of our faith (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 234), the mystery of who God is Himself. Since it's at the heart of our faith, it's essential that children begin to understand the Trinity, so that they may know who God is and relate to Him better.

The trouble with trying to explain and to understand the Blessed Trinity is that the Trinity is a mystery. This doesn't mean that we don't know anything about the Trinity; we do know some things but not others.

DEAR FATHER | Holy Spirit found in inspiration of Old Testament authors

Where can I find the Holy Spirit in the Old Testament? 

We first find the Holy Spirit's presence in the Old Testament, and throughout the Bible, in His inspiration of the sacred authors of the text. The Spirit inspires the prophecies of the Old Testament, sees their fulfillment in Christ and confirms the Church in the truth of Christ through the writings of the New Testament. While He inspires the biblical authors, He is also actively at work in the Bible in both the Old and New Testaments.

DEAR FATHER | Scriptures, legends shine light on where first apostles shared the Gospel

Before His ascension, Jesus told His apostles, "Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature" (Mark 16:15). While these words were meant for the whole Church, the apostles were the first to embrace them. They traveled, sometimes great distances, to preach the Gospel. All but one of the apostles were martyred for their belief in Christ and proclaiming Him to others.

With that, let us look at what the apostles did after Pentecost:

DEAR FATHER | We must commit ourselves to prayer for loved ones who have died

Thank you for asking this difficult question. It's a question that I believe is on the heart of many after a funeral. Unfortunately, it isn't brought up very often. After all, we don't want to say or think anything negative about our loved one, nor do we want to doubt the power of God's merciful love for anyone. This question remains something nagging our mind that we rarely address.

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