Columns

From the category archives: Fr. Robert Barron

Fr. Robert Barron

Welcome a pope who seeks to rebuild God's Church

Fr. Robert Barron

March 25, 2013

I had an excellent vantage point for the presentation of Pope Francis to the world, for I was doing commentary for NBC News from a perch above St. Peter's Square. I will confess that my initial impression was negative, not because he was a relative surprise or because he wasn't from the United States, but because, for more than a minute, he stood ramrod straight, hands at his side and not smiling.

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Through beauty, one can come to know goodness and truth

Fr. Robert Barron

February 25, 2013

In his masterpiece Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh implicitly lays out a program of evangelization that has particular relevance to our time.

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Give me faith, hope and love that have teeth

Fr. Robert Barron

February 4, 2013

St. Paul famously tells the Corinthians that there are "three things that last: faith, hope, and love." At this Pauline prompt, the Christian tradition has identified these three as the "theological" virtues, meaning those features that come as a unique gift from God and that serve as the structuring elements of a properly spiritual life.

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Doing simple acts of kindness thwarts the darkness of evil

Fr. Robert Barron

January 14, 2013

Like Star Wars, The Divine Comedy and Moby Dick, J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit is the story of a hero's journey. This helps to explain, of course, why, like those other narratives, it has proved so perennially compelling.

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Vatican II was a step in a process, not an end in itself

Fr. Robert Barron

December 3, 2012

Just a few weeks ago, we celebrated the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council. So, there has been a good deal of commentary from historians, theologians and even from the handful of bishops and experts who actually participated in the Council five decades ago.

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Self-indulgent sexuality misses out on love

Fr. Robert Barron

November 5, 2012

Many of the Catholic Church's teachings are vilified in both the high and popular cultures, but none more than its doctrines concerning marriage and sexuality. Time and again, the Church's views on sex are characterized as puritanical, life denying and hopelessly outdated – holdovers from the Bronze Age.

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Science will never prove that God does not exist

Fr. Robert Barron

October 15, 2012

Given the ruminations of Stephen Hawking, Richard Dawkins and Daniel Dennett, one might have thought that the absolute limit of scientistic arrogance had been reached.

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Kids hookup sexually, become headhunters

Fr. Robert Barron

October 1, 2012

I first came across the term "hookup culture" in Leonard Sax's thought provoking and disturbing 2005 book, Why Gender Matters. But the phenomenon itself I found beautifully depicted in a novel published a year earlier: Tom Wolfe's I Am Charlotte Simmons.

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Dark Knight Batman becomes an icon of Christ

Fr. Robert Barron

August 27, 2012

In one way or another, all religions deal with the problem of evil, both how to explain it and how to solve it. Buddhism, for example, teaches that all life is suffering and that the only way out is through the extinction of egotistic desire, that "blowing out of the candle" designated by the Sanskrit word nirvana. All of Buddhist practice, theory and doctrine are devoted to the attainment of this blissful state.

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Spider-Man weaves a theological web of intriguing themes

Fr. Robert Barron

August 20, 2012

This past decade has seen a plethora of movies dealing with superheroes: the Batman films, The Green Lantern, Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, etc. But the most popular – at least judging by box office receipts – has been the Spider-Man franchise. Since 2002, there have been four major movie adaptations of the Marvel Comics story of a kid who gets bitten by a spider, undergoes a stunning metamorphosis, and then "catches thieves just like flies."

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