February 16, 2018  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
It has been said that rather than people judging great works of art, they rather judge us. A treasured painting calls us to encounter not only the subject matter of the painting, but also reveals how that particular beauty resonates in our memory, our hearts, and in the upward inclination of our souls. Art is very much an inkling of the divine that speaks to us. Madeleine Stebbins, a student and later assistant of the great Catholic 20th-century philosopher Dietrich von Hildebrand, has created a contemplative text to guide our reflections upon some of the greatest paintings in Western civilization.
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January 19, 2018  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
There are 156 verses in the New Testament that contain the phrase, “one another.” Love one another, pray for one another, encourage one another — ours is a faith that has both a vertical orientation to God and a horizontal one toward “one another.” In fact, many places in the Scriptures we are told that our love for God is directly seen by our love and service for one another. Across our churches, our hospitals, our soup kitchens, our charities, Catholics strive to fulfill Christ’s simple but powerful command — we are to care for one another. 
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THE CATHOLIC REVIEW: All I Want for Christmas

The 2017 Review of Great Catholic Gift Books
December 15, 2017  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER

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THE CATHOLIC REVIEW: A messenger for our times

Bishop Robert Barron on Proclaiming the Gospel in a Secular Age
November 17, 2017  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
Bishop Robert Barron is the Archbishop Fulton Sheen of this generation. That’s not my opinion alone, but it is that of veteran Vatican-watcher, CNN commentator, and Catholic author John Allen, who has written extensively about the church in a variety of contexts. Most recently, Allen co-wrote a book with Bishop Barron titled “To Light a Fire on the Earth: Proclaiming the Gospel in a Secular Age.”
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October 20, 2017  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
Colorado is blessed to host the ministry of Sherry Weddell. Initiating a spiritual gifts discernment ministry in 1997, Weddell went on to teach how parishes can be more effective in the training and formation of members by replicating the “intentional discipleship” ministry patterns in the ministry of Jesus. Weddell is the author of “Forming Intentional Disciples: The Path to Knowing and Following Jesus (2012).” She also edited and contributed to “Becoming a Parish of Intentional Disciples” (2015).
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September 16, 2017  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb; he saw the linen cloths lying, and the napkin, which had been on his head, not lying with the linen cloths but rolled up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed.” (John 20:6–8)
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THE CATHOLIC REVIEW: Better or Bitter?

Suffering as a Redemptive and Transformative Experience
August 18, 2017  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER

The mettle of our spiritual life is proven not during the times of great joy or spiritual conversion, but more often we find our greatest maturity in times of suffering. Such was true in the life of St. Paul, but like us, he realized the ultimate purpose of his trials only afterwards, through the insights of life’s rear-view mirror, as he writes to the church in Corinth:

And to keep me from being too elated by the abundance of revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan, to harass me, to keep me from being too elated. Three times I begged the Lord about this, that it should leave me; but he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” I will all the more gladly boast of my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities; for when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:7–10 (RSV2CE)

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THE CATHOLIC REVIEW: Blessed Are Those Called to the Supper of the Lamb

Studying the Catholic Church’s teaching on the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist
June 16, 2017  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
As we will soon celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, it has always been a special time in the liturgical year for me. As a former Protestant minister, it was the Eucharist — the body, blood, soul, and divinity of Christ, present in bread and wine, the “source and summit of the Christian life” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, No. 322) that drew me inexorably into the Catholic Church. To receive Holy Communion is still the greatest gift on this earth, and it is always an experience to be treasured.
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THE CATHOLIC REVIEW: ‘Be Still, and Know that I am God’

Rediscovering the beauty of silence in the ‘dictatorship of noise’
May 18, 2017  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
Our world, our lives, our families, our culture, and even our churches are drowning in a world of noise and distraction. Not simply the multiplication of words and media sources, our bigger loss is the presence of the grace of silence in our lives. Silence is too often a lost aspect of our spirituality, whose rediscovery can profoundly transform us.
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April 7, 2017  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
In preparation for his review of “Strangers in a Strange Land,” Deacon Rick Bauer conducted an e-mail interview with Archbishop Chaput.
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Archbishop Chaput surveys modern culture in new book

Sheep and Wolves, Serpents and Doves
April 6, 2017  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
COLORADO SPRINGS. Recently, several prominent Catholic commentators have written books warning people that the cultural assumptions that once guided our lives in America are losing their validity, while at the same time offering advice for living in a world of less religious identity and greater moral confusion. These books include Rod Dreher’s “The Benedict Option: A Strategy for Christians in a Post-Christian Nation” and Anthony Esolen’s “Out of the Ashes: Rebuilding American Culture.”
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THE CATHOLIC REVIEW: Making Sense of the Senseless

“Religion and the Global Resurgence of Violence: Connection of the Abrahamics" by Father Kizito Chike Osudibia
March 3, 2017  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
As people of Catholic faith, our hearts are torn by the near-daily litany of violence perpetrated by religious fanatics. That much of this religious terrorism is currently perpetrated by one “Abrahamic” religion is a combination of historical and religious factors; that this long saga sadly includes all three Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) causes us to wonder why such violence occurs, and if there is any clear way to end it.
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