The National Catholic Review

The Good Word

  • Regret is the grace no one wants, but only those who have grown beyond a mistake receive it. That’s one consolation. Those who don’t learn, or change, never experience regret. It’s a perspective on the past we only gain as we grow. The Passion of Saint Mark contains the most potent of regrets, a shame and sorrow candidly confessed yet easily missed.

  • As Easter approaches I wanted to offer some reading as you go through Lent and prepare for Easter. My most recent columns for Lent and Easter can be found at The Word

  • Waiting is the hardest. Why? Because if you’re waiting, you know that something is coming. You’re not blissfully ignorant. Yet, if you’re waiting, you don’t truly know what is coming, what it will be like. That’s why waiting is so difficult, often worse than the moment itself. To be human is to wait. Our minds allow us to see something of what is coming. We know a little, but never enough.

  • Interesting phrase. “It’s just your imagination.” We use it to tell another that her fears spring from her mind rather than reality, as though the two weren’t intertwined. Fears are part world, part whimsy. That’s true as well of inventions and inspirations. They begin with what is and take us to what might be. A world without imagination wouldn’t be one where humans could live. As that wise wizard Albus Dumbledore once said to his protégé, Mr. Potter, “Of course it is happening inside your...

  • This is the fourteenth entry in the Bible Junkies Online Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles. This post examines the third summary of the communal life of the disciples of Jesus in Jerusalem.

    For previous entries, please now go to the Complete Acts of the Apostle Commentary, where you can find links to each of the...

  • Here is how Chris Kyle introduces himself in the opening of his autobiography, American Sniper (2013). Many will come to know him as he is portrayed by Bradley Cooper in the blockbuster movie of the same name.

  • This is the thirteenth entry in the Bible Junkies Online Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles. The first entrycovered some of the major critical, technical and background issues that will concern us as we read through and comment on the Acts. The second post, found here, considered the prologue to the Acts of...

  • The River Thames froze in January of 1649.  The King asked Thomas Herbert, the Parliamentarian official attending him, to dress him in two shirts, lest the rabble, watching him die, think that he shivered from cowardice. Charles insisted, “I fear not death. Death is not terrible to me, bless my God, I am prepared.”

  • Can nature be more rarified than in a rainbow? Earth donates water droplets. Sunlight supplies the rest. A rainbow is the most ethereal element of God’s creation. Small wonder it was chosen to be the sign of God’s covenant. In the presence of water, light is reflected, refracted, dispersed. Water is transfigured into something radiant.

    The rainbow becomes an Old Testament sacrament: God’s providence and promise imprinted upon the material world. God will never again rise against...

  • This is the twelfth entry in the Bible Junkies Online Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles. The first entrycovered some of the major critical, technical and background issues that will concern us as we read through and comment on the Acts. The second post, found here, considered the prologue to the Acts of...