Welcome Message

Welcome to my blog about Catholic life and family values.
This blog will center around the beauty of Catholicism and how to raise families, evangelize our faith, and fight the ongoing spritual battles that challenge us daily.

You are invited to share your wisdom on these pages with all the readers. Together we will address important life and faith issues and how to enhance our Catholic identity.

Key areas that you will find me addressing regularly will be about important Catholic doctrine and beliefs and how they help us raise strong Catholic Christian families. My hope is that you will learn, enjoy, and be challenged by my posts. You may be informed, amused, or even annoyed, but I hope it will in some way improve your Catholic faith.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Lessons from Rocky Balboa

Last Saturday night, my wife and daughter were out so the dogs and I watched the original Rocky movie from 1976. Something three guys (albeit two canines) could enjoy.

Although I've seen it before, one scene in particular struck me. It was the night before the big fight with Apollo Creed and Rocky was doubting his ability to compete, much less beat the champ. His comments that night were telling. He said, "I just want to go the distance with him. No one ever has. If I could just hear that final bell, then I know I've done something..."

As the fight wages on, Rocky is knocked down several times. In the second to last round, he goes down for the count only to rise at with one count to go before losing. He makes it to the final bell and although he lost the fight, he won his battle.

It amazes me how many times I get knocked down during life. No, they aren't always big blows, but if you live long enough you will have your shares of shots to the body and staggering right hooks. Do I always have the resiliency to stand up and take more?

As Rocky got up the final time, I thought of Jesus getting up after the third fall on the road to Calvary. We have a cross to bear during our journey of life. I can envision Jesus in our corner saying "Get up! Get up! I'm here with you."

My lesson learned from this 33-year old movie is that we need to fight until the final bell. Our nemesis may not be Apollo Creed. It may be the devil and all the doubts, hurdles, and temptations he throws in our paths. Like Job, we too will overcome as long as we have Jesus in our corner.

Vivat Jesus,


Thursday, April 2, 2009

Twitter for Faith

One of the cover stories in this month's National Catholic Register is using social media tools like Twitter to evangelize the Catholic faith. I have found a multitude of Catholic Twitter accounts and follow many of them.

If you would like to better learn how to effectively and efficiently use Twitter, I have a training to do just that. It's set up as a business teleseminar, however the same strategies may be used to advance your message of faith.

If you are interested in learning more about how to use Twitter and Facebook, click here.

Vivat Jesus,


Saturday, February 28, 2009

A Pro-Life Victory

Check out this great news from Rob K who is the founder of the Catholic Dads blog page to which I'm a contributor. The fight goes on...

Read the blog post here

Vivat Jesus,


Thursday, February 26, 2009

Book Review - Quiet Strength

Hey Dads, here's a great book to read. I just finished the book Quiet Strength by former Indianapolis Colts Head Coach Tony Dungy. Coach Dungy isn't Catholic but he has a very strong Christian faith that resonates throughout his book. In fact, more than football, Quiet Strength discusses issues dealing with being a loving husband, a strong father, a good son, and a great friend. In fact, one of his mentors is the Hall of Fame coach Chuck Noll who is a strong Catholic.

How did it impact me? It led me back to a conversation my wife, Barb and I have been having for the past three years. Tony and his wife , Lauren have adopted two children in the past several years. Barb and I have discussed the same thing, but I was the one dragging my cold feet. Reading this book during my Holy Hours helped me see that God is telling me its time. So, we have contacted Catholic Community Services and have started down that path. I believe God put this book in my lap in part to lead me this way.

Great book - inspirational and powerful. Oh, by the way, if you're a football fan like me, there's plenty of that in there, too!

Vivat Jesus,


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Catholic non-Leadership on Pro-Life

I watched the State of the Union address by new President Barack Obama. Behind him for about 53 minutes were Vice-President Joe Biden and the too-often rising Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. You would think that as a Catholic I would be proud that two practicing Catholics were at the highest level of this government. That the #2 and #3 people politically in this country are Catholic!

Too bad they both overlook the teaching of their faith and have been stalwart champions for the pro-choice movement that continues to annihilate the unborn on our country.

Dear Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle...

Vivat Jesus,


Ash Wednesday Memory

It was Ash Wednesday in 1981 and I was a junior in high school. I'll never forget the challenge given to my youth group at St. Augustine's by our pastor. He challenged us to wear a symbol of the Lenten season all 40 days everywhere we went - school, town, movies - everywhere.

We each received a fairly good sized thorn to pin on our shirts. The message was that Christ wore his crown of thorns on Good Friday, so we would show our support for his sacrifice visibly. We were charged to never forget wearing it.

We all got off to a great start. It was actually fun to "educate" our non-Catholic friends on why we were wearing a "tree" on our shirts. Nobody derided us; it was actually great dialogue. Since we did it as a fairly large group, there was a sense of team.

I'm sure the good priest knew what would happen next. I'm guessing it was part of the lesson. On occasion, each of us would forget to pin on our thorn. When this happened, one of us would tear off a small piece and share. By the end of the 40 days, all of our thorns were about 75% gone!

The lesson - we all shared our sacrifice with each other. Not only had we been a visible symbol for Jesus, we had also been support for each other. When one fell (or simply forgot), we were there to pick each other up. In retrospect, I suspect this was the biggest lesson of all.

I look back and think, "Maybe I should wear that thorn again." The reality is that without my team it wouldn't be the same. However, because of that team, the memory and the lesson will live forever.

Have a great Lent.

Vivat Jesus,


Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy St. Valentines Day

With thanks to American Minute with Bill Federer

In the 3rd century, Emperor Claudius II was faced with defending the
Roman Empire from the invading Goths.

He believed single men made better soldiers so he temporarily forbade

He also forced the Senate to deify the former Emperor Gallienus,
including him with the Roman gods to be worshipped.

Legend has it that Valentine was a bishop in Italy who risked the
Emperor's wrath by refusing to worship idols and for secretly
marrying young couples.

Saint Valentine was dragged before the Prefect of Rome, who condemned
him to be beaten to death with clubs and have his head cut off,

While awaiting execution, it is said he prayed for the jailers' sick
daughter, who miraculously recovered.

He wrote her a note and signed it, "from your Valentine."

In 496 AD, Pope Gelasius designated February 14th as "Saint
Valentine's Day."

Signing an X for a kiss began in Medieval times where those who could
not write marked a criss-cross or "Christ's cross" in the presence of
witnesses and kissed it to show sincerity.

The X, or Chi symbol, was the Greek letter used to represent the name
of Christ, as X-Mas for Christmas, and was used as a written form of
the oath "So help me God."

Vivat Jesus,


Thursday, February 12, 2009

In God We Trust

Here's your chance to let the media know where the people stand on our faith in God, as a nation. NBC is taking a poll on "In God We Trust" to stay on our American currency. Please send this to every Christian you know so they can vote on this important subject. Please do it right away, before NBC takes this off the web page. Poll is still open so you can vote.


Gladly, as you will see, the God side is winning big!

Vivat Jesus,


Thursday, February 5, 2009

Love of Neighbor Taught by a Dog

What an amazing feat this dog performed! How often do we do this for our brothers and sisters?

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Great Pro-Life article - a MUST read

The best Pro-Life article by a national columnist that I've read it quite some time. Star Parker appears in my local newspaper, the Kitsap Sun. Fortunately, I read it this morning. I've now subscribed to her column online as to not miss any in the future.

This is a fabulous article - a MUST READ and pass on...

Click here to read.

Vivat Jesus,


Monday, January 19, 2009

Lesson #2 from Narnia

Excuse the delay...I went through the wardrobe and ended up in Rhode Island!

Lesson #2 is this - Put your trust and faith blindly in Jesus. Sometimes there is no evidence He is there or listening to you. He is. In the movie, Peter couldn't find Aslan; wondered why he never showed up to save the day; and gave up hope he would come. Lucy finally found him and Aslan asked why she was the only one to show up. Faith, hope and trust must exist...even in the toughest of times.

Ironically, on my trip back East, I started reading the book on Mother Teresa that came out a few years ago. I've barely been able to put it down. Amazingly she hits on the issue I've just mentioned above. Blind faith and trust even when you are in darkness. If you haven't read the book yet, do yourself a favor and get it. You will be inspired!

Vivat Jesus,


Thursday, January 8, 2009

Lesson #1 from Narnia

My goal isn't to ruin the movie for you. If you haven't seen it, this shouldn't take away the excitement. Maybe you can watch and re-visit this post later...

Lesson #1 - Temptation is always attractive. And, it normally hits our weak spots.

In the movie, the opportunity to free the evil White Witch from her bondage is given to both Caspian and Peter. Both are visibly leaning towards doing the unthinkable and freeing their mortal enemy to help them defeat a new one.

As Father John Corapi says, the devil never walks up to you looking all bad and evil saying, "Hi, I'm the devil and I'm here to tempt you." Instead, he disguises himself in something that we have a desire for, whether it be self interest, pornography, gambling, drug or alcohol abuse, etc. Like the White Witch, he shows up looking like it's our best interest...see the Garden of Eden.

In the movie, Peter lost faith in Aslan. When we lose faith or forget in the power of God, we are tempted to do the same. Don't fall for the bait.

Next up - Lesson #2.

Vivat Jesus,


Sunday, January 4, 2009

Lessons from Narnia

My family just watched the newest edition of C.S. Lewis' the Chronicles of Narnia last night - Prince Caspian. If you are familiar with C.S. Lewis, you know he was greatly influenced by Catholicism. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe has a ton of Christian and Catholic imagery dealing with the Resurrection, Confession, and Faith to name a few.

I found Prince Caspian to be much more of the same. Granted, Lewis' work has been turned into a major motion picture which can sometimes lead to distortion. That being said, I think Disney did an excellent job in keeping to the original work.

Over the next three posts, I'm going to comment on three key areas that I believe have a Catholic interpretation. I couldn't help but hearken back to them as I sat in Mass this morning. I hope you plan on checking back over the week to see what they are. As always, I will welcome your comments and critique.

Vivat Jesus,