THE CATHOLIC REVIEW: Biblical Commentaries

A Guide for the Perplexed on a Budget
November 16, 2018  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
“The study of the sacred page . . . should be the very soul of sacred theology” (Vatican II, Dei Verbum, 24). In a time of testing for the church’s beliefs and practices, it will be those steeped in the scriptures, in the magisterial teaching and traditions of the church, and in the long-running dialogue of her scholars and teachers on the precise meaning and application of these sources of her authority, who will convince others and lead by their understanding, knowledge, and wisdom.
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October 19, 2018  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
One of the areas in Catholic moral theology that is frought with confusion and half-truths is that of same-sex attraction.  Until recently, it has been difficult to find books on this subject that are both well-researched and faithful to the Church’s magisterium. However, Father Mike Schmitz, a priest who serves as a campus minister in the Diocese of Duluth, Minnesota, has recently published a helpful book titled “Made for Love: Same-Sex Attractions and the Catholic Church” (Ignatius Press). The book combines a priestly perspective, a compassionate and loving tone and an effective attempt to bridge the gap between the conclusions of the Catholic Church and their impact on those who are affected by same-sex attraction.
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September 21, 2018  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
Many Catholics know that the month of October is the month of the Holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary. What better time to look at the treasure-trove of excellent books to grow (or even begin) a vibrant and authentic Marian veneration practice within our hearts, our families, and our homes?
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August 17, 2018  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
We can all benefit from study and reflection that helps us to live the Mass more deeply, and fortunately there are many resources to aid us in this endeavor. Below are reviews of three that are worth investigating:
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THE CATHOLIC REVIEW: The Fragility of Order

Catholic Reflections on Turbulent Times
June 15, 2018  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER

When Catholics seek a mature insight into the politics or history of the current times or want to enjoin a discussion of the utmost gravity, more often than not, author George Weigel is on the short list of potential commentators. Weigel, one of the more prominent public intellectuals in modern times, is the author of two dozen New York Times bestselling books and is a Distinguished Senior Fellow of Washington’s Ethics and Public Policy Center, where he holds the William E. Simon Chair in Catholic Studies.

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THE CATHOLIC REVIEW: The Eight Doors of the Kingdom

Newest offering from Father Jacques Philippe
April 20, 2018  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER
Happiness. Blessedness. Joy. While we may argue about the path, we seldom dispute the goal. We are born to live in blessedness. We strive to find joy and happiness throughout our lives, though sometimes that search takes us off the narrow path. Father Jacques Philippe, a priest of the Community of the Beatitudes living in Denver, reminds us that the path to blessedness, the Eight doors of the Kingdom, lies in the opening proclamation of Jesus in St. Matthew’s Gospel.
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March 17, 2018  |  By DEACON RICK BAUER

As we seek to more actively pray the Mass, we are challenged by the presider to “call to mind” not only our failings, but to “prepare ourselves to celebrate the sacred mysteries.” The original word in Koine Greek is pronounced “mysterion,” which when translated is the Latin word “sacramentum,” from which we derive the English word “sacrament.”

Any resource we can discover that helps us to prepare ourselves for the Eucharist is worth the effort in its finding, and “Holiness and Living the Sacramental Life,” written by Father Philip-Michael Tangorra, is just such a help. This new book, part of the Living Faith series published by Emmaus Road Publishers, has as its purpose to help Catholics navigate their way in an increasingly relativistic world.

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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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