Reading Between the Lines

History is filled with famous quotes and one liners. Many have become linchpins for history’s famous speeches, treatises and essays. Unfortunately, some of these quotes gathered from throughout history are more legend than reality. Not a few of these fraudulent quotes are attributed to famous Catholic Churchmen, some well-intentioned and others not so much. Below are three such quotes.

“Kill them all. For the Lord knows those that are His own.”

This quote has been attributed to the Cistercian Abbot Arnaud Amalric. The Abbot has gone down in history as one of the most infamous figures from the Albigensian heresy and its suppression. This quote has been used for anti-Catholic rhetoric for centuries. Fortunately, modern scholarship has come a long way and cast major doubts that this quote was even said at all. Its first appearance comes decades after and from a source far removed from the event it is attributed to. Its author was also known for his deviance from historical accuracy. To learn more about this non-quote click HERE. Continue reading “Reading Between the Lines”

Saints, Souls, and Sinners

“I will spend my Heaven doing good on earth.” – St. Therese of Lisieux

The Apostles of the Interior Life recently offered a women’s retreat at Savior Pastoral Center in Kansas City, Kansas that I was fortunate enough to attend.  The retreat was based on a passage from St. Matthew’s Gospel: “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of Heaven.”  (Mt. 13:11)  Spending the majority of the weekend meditating on Heaven was a unique experience, as I admittedly don’t ponder heaven as often as I should.   From the beautiful words the Apostles spoke, I was reminded that Heaven should never be far from my thoughts.  After all, how can I truly live my life with the hope of ending up in a place I know nothing about?

Continue reading “Saints, Souls, and Sinners”

All Saints Day Tops Halloween When Considering Life-Changing Intercessions

Halloween didn’t start out as the candy grabbing, fright festival it has become in the U.S. As often happens with religious celebrations, Halloween is the result of knocking a holy day off its foundation and changing its meaning, in this case, the Feast of All Saints, which is on November 1st. The feast of All Hallows Day has a vigil the evening before, which is where the name Hallows Eve – Halloween, is derived.

Now, I enjoy watching the kids get dressed up as pirates and leprechauns, princesses and magicians as much as any dad. As far as Trick or Treat time goes, it’s fun to go around with the kids to the neighbors and collect enough sweets to compromise all the teeth in a great white shark. The kids are cute in their costumes and the neighbors all have fun with it. But the way Halloween is celebrated today in society is just a shadow of what the All Saints Day commemoration is really supposed to be about. The way the church sees it is more fulfilling than a Snickers bar and might just explain your life’s biggest blessing.

Continue reading “All Saints Day Tops Halloween When Considering Life-Changing Intercessions”

To all the other Mice and Men

The 18th century poet Robert Burns famously wrote in “To a Mouse”;

“But Mouse, you are not alone, In proving foresight may be vain: The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry, And leave us nothing but grief and pain, For promised joy!”

This poem would later be the inspiration for a novel more of us may be familiar with, John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men. A quote the regular readers of this blog may be more familiar with, “If you’re ever looking for a joke to make God laugh, tell him your plans.” This is not necessarily a “feel good” blog post, but is meant for those who find themselves wandering in their own metaphorical wilderness.

Continue reading “To all the other Mice and Men”