Sarah Swafford: Emotional Virtue

Dating is hard. In today’s world of social media it’s even harder. How do we deal with the emotional ups and downs of seeking a relationship in the era of social media?

Sarah Swafford, author of “Emotional Virtue: A Guide to Drama-Free Relationships,” quotes one of the best pieces of advice she ever received, “You’re running around looking for someone to be your savior when you already have one,” and explains why a focus on seeking to grow in virtue, rather than being focused on our own happiness, is the key to finding happy and healthy relationships in her talk entitled “Emotional Virtue.” Ms. Swafford’s talk was part of the Gift of Human Sexuality Symposium at Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Listen to the audio:

Sr. Bethany Madonna, S.V.: Receiving the Promise of a New Heart

We all long for an infinite love, a love that is stable, forever, and belongs to us alone. We have a Father who gives us this love, a Father who lavishes gifts upon us out of his overflowing, abundant, infinite love.

Sr. Bethany Madonna, S.V., Vocations Director for the Sisters of Life in Suffern, NY, discusses three gifts we need to learn to receive if we are to be healed from believing we are orphans: the gift of life, the gift of a new heart, and the gift of the kingdom in her talk entitled “Receiving the Promise of a New Heart.” Sr. Madonna’s talk was part of the Gift of Human Sexuality Symposium at Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Sources Sr. Bethany Madonna recommends in her talk:

Audrey Assad testimony at Focus Seek 2015: https://soundcloud.com/udreyssad/personal-witness

Matt Fradd for men: https://youtu.be/xhkRbsmCv1s

Dawn Eden Goldstein book: My Peace I Give You: Healing Sexual Wounds with the Help of the Saints https://www.amazon.com/My-Peace-Give-You-Healing/dp/1594712905

Documentary: Desire of the Everlasting Hills https://everlastinghills.org/movie/

Listen to the audio:

Dr. Eduardo Echeverria: The Semantics of Vatican II Theology

Dr. Eduardo Echeverria, Professor of Philosophy and Systematic Theology at Sacred Heart Major Seminary, discusses some important semantic distinctions made by John XXIII during his opening address of the Second Vatican Council. His talk, entitled, “Unity and Diversity in Post-Vatican II Theology: Pope Francis’ Perspective”, was part of the Pope Francis’ Vision for the Renewal of the Church Symposium at Franciscan University of Steubenville.

View full talk.

 

Robert Spencer: The Theological Aspects of Islam That Lead to Jihad

Robert Spencer, Founder and Director of Jihad Watch, delivers his talk entitled “The Theological Aspects of Islam That Lead to Jihad.” Mr. Spencer’s talk was sponsored by the Veritas Center for Ethics in Public Life at Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Listen to the Audio:

Dr. John Bergsma — How to Get an ‘F’ in Leadership

Dr. John Bergsma, Associate Professor of Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville, delivers his talk entitled “How to Get an ‘F’ in Leadership”.  Dr. Bergsma’s talk was part of the Leadership Conference, sponsored by the Center for Leadership at Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Dr. Michael Waldstein — Humanae Vitae and Theology

Dr. Michael Waldstein, the Max Seckler Professor of Theology at Ave Maria University, describes the theology behind Humanae Vitae.  Dr. Waldstein’s talk was part of the  “Humanae Vitae at 45: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Holiness” Conference at Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Is Anyone Grateful? The 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time

The themes of the Readings for this Sunday focus on the gratitude for God’s salvation.  Gratitude is an important psychological and spiritual disposition.  Dr. Daniel G. Amen, the popular brain researcher and public health spokesman, identifies gratitude as a key character quality of persons with physiologically healthy brains.  That’s right: gratitude affects your physical health, including the shape and functioning of your brain.  This Sunday’s Readings focus particularly on gratitude to God, and how it should be expressed.

Life By Faith: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 27th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Habakkuk 1:2-3;2:2-4 Psalm 95:1-2,6-9 2 Timothy 1:6-8,13-14 Luke 17:5-10

Because of his faith, the just man shall live. We hear in today’s First Reading the original prophetic line made so central by St. Paul (see Romans 1:17; Galatians 3:11; Hebrews 10:38).

We are to live by faith in Christ who loved us and gave himself on the Cross for us (see Galatians 2:20).

A Great Chasm: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Amos 6:1, 4-7 Psalm 146:7-10 1 Timothy 6:11-16 Luke 16:19-31

The rich and powerful are visited with woe and exile in today’s Liturgy – not for their wealth but for their refusal to share it; not for their power but for their indifference to the suffering at their door.

The complacent leaders in today’s First Reading feast on fine foods and wines, reveling while the house of Joseph, the kingdom of Israel (see Amos 5:6), collapses around them.

Does it Matter How We Treat Others? The 26th Sunday of Ordinary Time

Does it matter how we treat others?  What does my neighbor’s suffering have to do with me?  Can I continue living in comfort while bypassing those around me who are in misery?

These are questions that the Readings for this Sunday raise, and to which they provide uncomfortable answers.  Let’s read and let the Holy Spirit move us outside our comfort zone.

Prudent Stewards: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Amos 8:4-7 Psalm 113:1-2, 4-6, 7-8 1 Timothy 2:1-8 Luke 16:1-13

The steward in today’s Gospel confronts the reality that he can’t go on living the way he has been. He is under judgment, must give account for what he has done.

The exploiters of the poor in today’s First Reading are also about to be pulled down, thrust from their stations (see Isaiah 22:19). Servants of mammon or money, they’re so in love with wealth that they reduce the poor to objects, despise the new moons and sabbaths – the observances and holy days of God (see Leviticus 23:24; Exodus 20:8).

God and Mammon: The 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time

As Jesus continues his “death march” to Jerusalem in Luke’s Gospel (Luke 9–19), he challenges us this Sunday to choose, in a clear and conscious way, our goal in life: God or money.  The First Reading reminds us that wealth was a seductive trap for the people of God throughout salvation history.

Seeking the Lost: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Exodus 32:7-11, 13-14 Psalm 51:3-4, 12-13, 17, 19 1 Timothy 1:12-17 Luke 15:1-10

The episode in today’s First Reading has been called “Israel’s original sin.” Freed from bondage, born as a people of God in the covenant at Sinai, Israel turned aside from His ways, fell to worshipping a golden calf.

Moses implores God’s mercy, as Jesus will later intercede for the whole human race, as He still pleads for sinners at God’s right hand and through the ministry of the Church.

Dr. John Crosby — The Universality of Incarnational Humanism

Dr. John Crosby, Director of the MA Philosophy Program at Franciscan University of Steubenville, discusses the universality of incarnational humanism in this excerpt from his talk entitled “The Triumph of Incarnational Humanism at Vatican II” delivered at the Year of Faith Symposium on Vatican II at Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Watch the full talk here: The Triumph of Incarnational Humanism at Vatican II.

Prodigal Son Sunday: 24th Sunday in OT

This upcoming Sunday marks one of only two times in the main Lectionary cycle that we hear the Parable of the Prodigal Son proclaimed (the other being the 4th Sunday of Lent [C]).  The Readings are marked by the theme of repentance and forgiveness. 

Dr. John Crosby — The Triumph of Incarnational Humanism at Vatican II

Dr. John Crosby, Director of the MA Philosophy Program at Franciscan University of Steubenville, delivers his talk entitled “The Triumph of Incarnational Humanism at Vatican II” at the Year of Faith Symposium on Vatican II at Franciscan University of Steubenville.

The Cost of Discipleship: 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

One of the most famous German opponents of Adolf Hitler and Nazism was the Lutheran pastor and theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer, whom the Nazis executed by hanging in April 1945 for his involvement in a plot against Hitler himself.  Bonhoeffer’s most famous work was a meditation on the Sermon on the Mount entitled (in English) The Cost of Discipleship.  In it, Bonhoeffer parted ways with a Protestantism that understood “salvation by faith alone” as some kind of easy road to heaven.  Bonhoeffer criticized “easy-believism” as “cheap grace”:

Counting the Cost: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Wisdom 9:13-18
Psalm 90:3-6, 12-17
Philemon 1:9-10, 12-17
Luke 14:25-33

Like a king making ready for battle or a contractor about to build a tower, we have to count the cost as we set out to follow Jesus.

Our Lord today is telling us upfront the sacrifice it will take. His words aren’t addressed to His chosen few, the Twelve, but rather to the “great crowds” – to “anyone,” to “whoever” wishes to be His disciple.

Dr. Paul Symington — A Response to “Must Morality Be Grounded in God?”

Dr. Paul Symington, Associate Professor of Philosophy at Franciscan University of Steubenville, responds to Dr. John Rist’s keynote address “Must Morality Be Grounded in God?” at the 2013 Annual Conference on Christian Philosophy, hosted by Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Watch the original talk here: Must Morality Be Grounded in God?

Guess Who’s Coming for Dinner? The 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

In 2005, a quasi-remake of the famous 1967 movie “Guess Who’s Coming for Dinner” was released.  Entitled “Guess Who?” it starred Bernie Mac as an African-American father who struggled to deal with his daughter’s Caucasian fiancé (played by Ashton Kutcher).  Much of the comedy of the film revolved around the clash of cultures at the dinner table.  Usually we only share meals with people like us, family members or friends from our own “circle.”  When someone from “outside” comes in, it upsets the our balance. 

To Go Up Higher: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sirach 3:17-18, 20, 28-29
Psalm 68:4-7,10-11
Hebrews 12:18-19, 22-24
Luke 14:1, 7-14

We come to the wedding banquet of heaven by way of humility and charity. This is the fatherly instruction we hear in today’s First Reading, and the message of today’s Gospel.

Jesus is not talking simply about good table manners. He is revealing the way of the kingdom, in which the one who would be greatest would be the servant of all (see Luke 22:24-27).

Dr. John Rist — What is Meant By Morality?

Dr. John Rist, the Fr. Kurt Pritzl, O.P., Chair in Philosophy at Catholic University of America, defines morality in this excerpt from his keynote entitled “Must Morality Be Grounded in God?” at the 2013 Annual Conference on Christian Philosophy, hosted by Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Watch the full talk here: Must Morality Be Grounded in God?

Dr. John Rist — Must Morality Be Grounded in God?

Dr. John Rist, the Fr. Kurt Pritzl, O.P., Chair in Philosophy at Catholic University of America, delivers a keynote address entitled “Must Morality Be Grounded in God?” at the 2013 Annual Conference on Christian Philosophy, hosted by Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Watch the response to this talk here: A Response to “Must Morality Be Grounded in God?”

Dr. John Crosby — A Response to “Suárez’s ‘Best Argument’ and the Dependence of Morality on God”

Dr. John Crosby, Director of the M.A. Philosophy Program at Franciscan University of Steubenville, responds to Dr. Mark Murphy’s paper entitled “Suárez’s ‘Best Argument’ and the Dependence of Morality on God” at the 2013 Annual Conference on Christian Philosophy, hosted by Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Watch the original talk here: Suárez’s “Best Argument” and the Dependence of Morality on God.

Dr. Mark Murphy — Keynote Excerpt

Dr. Mark Murphy, McDevitt Chair of Religious Philosophy at Georgetown University, discusses Morality and God in this excerpt from his keynote entitled “Suárez’s ‘Best Argument’ and the Dependence of Morality on God” at the 2013 Annual Conference on Christian Philosophy, hosted by Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Watch the full talk here: Suárez’s ‘Best Argument’ and the Dependence of Morality on God.

Dr. Christopher Tollefsen — Morality and God

Dr. Christopher Tollefsen, Professor of Philosophy at the University of South Carolina, discusses the relationship between Morality and God in this excerpt from his keynote presentation entitled “Morality in God” at the 2013 Annual Conference on Christian Philosophy, hosted by Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Watch the full talk here: Morality in God.

Dr. Christopher Tollefsen — Morality in God

Dr. Christopher Tollefsen, Professor of Philosophy at the University of South Carolina, gives a keynote presentation entitled “Morality in God” at the 2013 Annual Conference on Christian Philosophy, hosted by Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Dr. Mark Murphy — Suárez’s ‘Best Argument’ and the Dependence of Morality on God

Dr. Mark Murphy, McDevitt Chair of Religious Philosophy at Georgetown University, delivers a keynote address entitled “Suárez’s ‘Best Argument’ and the Dependence of Morality on God” at the 2013 Annual Conference on Christian Philosophy, hosted by Franciscan University of Steubenville.

“Family Values”: 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time

In recent decades, the term “family values” has almost become a code word for “Christian culture” in American society.  Influential Christian organizations have adopted names like “Focus on the Family” and the “Family Research Council,” and on the Catholic side of things we have “Catholic Family Land” or The Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, better known as “C-FAM.”  The natural family unit—based on a husband and wife who have made an exclusive, permanent, public commitment to share a common life and raise children together—has been under such political and social pressure that at times we almost identify Christianity as a social movement to promote family life.

Let Us Not Forget the Wonder of Creation

In his fantastical account of “The Unthinkable Theory of Professor Green,” G.K. Chesterton invites us to imagine an astronomer regaling his audience in great and gorgeous detail about a strange new planet he’s just discovered.  Only gradually do we realize that this utterly amazing place is in fact our very own world, replete with wonders we’d scarcely been aware of before.

Isn’t this the whole point of travel?   Not to poke around places and people of such weirdness that you’d swear you’d wandered onto a sci-fi movie set.  Do we really want to run into a community of pod people while on holiday?   Wasn’t it bad enough watching “The Night of the Living Dead” on television?  Who needs a close encounter with the real thing on a vacation?

Again, Chesterton has the sense of it.  “It is not,” he tells us, “to set foot on foreign land; it is to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.”  And isn’t this the challenge that awaits us all?   How to arrest the attention sufficiently to allow us to stand in silent awe before the real world?  When jadedness sets in, we need a sudden jolt to set the circuits going again.  We need to open up the hood and let the wind sweep out all that is sour and stale on the inside.   Indeed, without a sense of wonder, and at least some minimal capacity for surprise and delight, we will never awaken to that “dearest freshness deep down things” (Gerard Manley Hopkins).

Read more at Crisis Magazine.

Faith of Our Fathers: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Wisdom 18:6-9
Psalm 33:1,12,18-22
Hebrews 11:1-2, 8-19
Luke 12:35-40

We are born of the faith of our fathers, descending from a great cloud of witnesses whose faith is attested to on every page of Scripture (see Hebrews 12:1). We have been made His people, chosen for His own inheritance, as we sing in this Sunday’s Psalm.

Church of the Poor: The 18th Week of OT

“How I long for a poor Church for the poor!”

 

These were some of the first words of Pope Francis’ pontificate, and the Readings this week seem providentially to support our new pontiff’s emphasis on the spiritual value of poverty.  Texts from the Old and New Testaments remind us that human happiness is not to be found in the accumulation of material goods.  Riches are fleeting and empty.  We are called instead to “store up treasure in heaven, where neither rust nor moth destroy, where thieves cannot break in and steal.”

The Fool’s Vanity: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Ecclesiastes 1:2; 2:21-23
Psalm 95:1-2, 6-7, 8-9
Colossians 3:1-5, 9-11
Luke 12:13-21

Trust in God – as the Rock of our salvation, as the Lord who made us His chosen people, as our shepherd and guide. This should be the mark of our following of Jesus.

Bargaining With God: The 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time

With the Bible Conference going on at Franciscan this week, I have to offer a shorter reflection on the Readings:
Who has the guts to bargain with the Divinity?  Abraham, our Father in , does.  In the Readings for this Sunday, we find united several themes: persistence in prayer, the justice and mercy of God, the generosity of God.

Asked and Answered: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Genesis 18:20-32
Psalm 138:1-3, 6-8
Colossians 2:12-14
Luke 11:1-13

Though we be “but dust and ashes,” we can presume to draw near and speak boldly to our Lord, as Abraham dares in this week’s First Reading.

Dr. Ralph Martin — Lay People, Their Document, and the Mission of Christ

Dr. Ralph Martin, Consultor to the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization, speaks about “Lay People, Their Document, and the Mission of Christ” at the 2012 Defending the Faith Conference here on campus in Steubenville, Ohio.

Watch the full talk here: Why Evangelize?  Does It Really Matter?

Dr. Ralph Martin — The Mission of the New Evangelization

Dr. Ralph Martin, Consultor to the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization, speaks about “The Mission of the New Evangelization” at the 2012 Defending the Faith Conference here on campus in Steubenville, Ohio.

Watch the full talk here: Why Evangelize?  Does It Really Matter?

Dr. Ralph Martin — Why Evangelize? Does It Really Matter?

Dr. Ralph Martin, Consultor to the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization, speaks about “Why Evangelize? Does It Really Matter?” at the 2012 Defending the Faith Conference here on campus in Steubenville, Ohio.

Dr. John Bergsma — Marriage in the Beginning, Middle, and End of the Bible

Dr. John Bergsma, Associate Professor of Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville, talks about “Marriage in the Beginning, Middle, and the End of the Bible” at the 2012 Applied Biblical Studies Conference here on campus in Steubenville, Ohio.

Dr. John Bergsma — Marriage is an Icon of God’s Relationship to Humanity

Dr. John Bergsma, Associate Professor of Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville, talks about “Marriage is an Icon of God’s Relationship to Humanity” at the 2012 Applied Biblical Studies Conference here on campus in Steubenville, Ohio.

Dr. Scott Hahn — Response to Kimberly Hahn’s “Chosen and Cherished”

Dr. Scott Hahn, Professor of Theology at Franciscan University, responds to Kimberly Hahn’s  “Chosen and Cherished” at the 2012 Applied Biblical Studies Conference here on campus in Steubenville, Ohio.  Dr. Scott Hahn is the Fr. Michael Scanlan, TOR, Chair of Biblical Theology and the New Evangelization at Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Watch Kimberly Hahn’s talk here: Chosen and Cherished: Biblical Wisdom for Your Marriage.

Steve Ray — Infant Baptism

Steve Ray, Producer of “Footprints of God: The Story of Salvation from Abraham to Augustine,” speaks about “Infant Baptism” at the 2012 Defending the Faith Conference here on campus in Steubenville, Ohio.

Steve Ray — By Faith Alone

Steve Ray, Producer of “Footprints of God: The Story of Salvation from Abraham to Augustine,” speaks about “By Faith Alone” at the 2012 Defending the Faith Conference here on campus in Steubenville, Ohio.

Steve Ray — Are You Born Again? A Catholic Response

Steve Ray, Producer of “Footprints of God: The Story of Salvation from Abraham to Augustine,” speaks about “Are You Born Again? A Catholic Response” at the 2012 Defending the Faith Conference here on campus in Steubenville, Ohio.

Entertaining God: The 16th Sunday of OT

This Sunday, as we continue to accompany Jesus on his fateful journey to Jerusalem in the Gospel of Luke, we are confronted with a pair of Readings in which human beings host a meal for God: Abraham for the LORD in the First Reading; Martha and Mary for Jesus in the Gospel.  But is it really possible for us to “do God a favor” by giving him a nice meal?  We are going to discover that, while God graciously accepts our services, it’s really about what God does for us, not what we can do for him.

A Turn Toward the Passion: The 12th Sunday of Ordinary Time

As the Church reads through the Gospel of Luke this year, we reach a transition point in this Sunday’s text (Luke 9:18-24) where the focus of the Gospel begins to shift toward Christ’s coming passion and death.  Sorrowful though his suffering will be, ironically it shall serve as the source of the life-giving “water” about which the other Readings speak.

Children of the Promise: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Zech 12:10-11; 13:1
Ps 62:2-6. 8-9 r. 2
Gal 3:26-29
Luke 9:18-24

In this Sunday’s readings we hear the voice of the Prophet Zechariah as he delivers difficult oracles from God. The people have returned from exile. Now back in Jerusalem, they face the arduous work of rebuilding the Temple. Zechariah acknowledges their hardships and foresees more obstacles.

But their grief has a purpose. It is a remedy, a penance to heal them—“a fountain to purify from sin and uncleanness.”

Dr. Scott Hahn — Abba or Allah: The Difference It Makes

Dr. Scott Hahn, Fr. Michael Scanlan Chair in Biblical Theology, spoke to Franciscan University of Steubenville’s 2011 Defending the Faith Conference “Ambassadors for Christ” on “Abba or Allah:The Difference it Makes.” “For the last quarter of a century,” said Dr. Hahn, “I have shared a conviction with a growing number of people that Islam really does represent the single greatest force of the third millennium and also the single greatest challenge and threat to Christianity worldwide.” Dr. Hahn explains the very different conceptions of God in Islam (as Allah, Master) and in Christianity (as Abba, Father) and their consequences for life, religion, and interreligious encounters. “There’s a profound difference between slavery and sonship,” Hahn declared. “Until the sons of God outserve the slaves of God, Christianity is going to continue to dissolve.”

VIDEO: Watch a five-minute, a ten-minute, and a twenty-minute clip from this talk.

Kimberly Hahn — The Gift of Priesthood for Our Time

Kimberly Hahn offers her talk of the Gift of Priesthood for our time at the Priests, Deacons, and Seminarians Retreat of 2011.

Dr. Michael Barber — Millennium: Unlocking the Book of Revelation

Dr. Michael Barber, Professor of Theology and Scripture at John Paul the Great Catholic University, gives a talk on the Book of Revelation at the Applied Biblical Studies Conference at Franciscan University of Steubenville in July 2010.

 

VIDEO: Watch a five-minute or a twenty-minute clip from this talk.

Franciscan University Presents on EWTN