Devotions and Sacramentals: Connecting to God through Physical Things

with Fr. Michael Niemczak

Are religious medals, blessings, and holy water just Catholic superstitions? Devotions and sacramentals are evidence that God desires to bless us in any way possible, even through material means. In this Catholic Bytes episode, Dcn. Michael Niemczak explains how both sacramentals and devotions respond to man’s desire to experience and express his love for God in a concrete, material way.

Further Resources:

  1. Online:  Very brief Q & A concerning sacramentals from the Baltimore Catechism.
  2. Online:  Extensive, detailed article on sacramentals by Paul Kokoski, from catholicculture.org
  3. Book: Signs of Life: 40 Catholic Customs and their Biblical Roots, by Scott Hahn, 2009.

The Moral Act Part I: Object

with Fr. Timothy Furlow

Who doesn’t love a good series? An opportunity to go deeper into a specific topic one step – or in our case, one byte – at a time. Today, we begin the first of a three part series on morality, and specifically, what constitutes a good or bad action. Fr. Tim Furlow starts by giving a comprehensive overview of a moral action, then delves into one of its three components: the object. Tune in for more . . .

Further Resources:

  1. Online Audio:  Deacon Keith Fournier’s discussion of the foundations of morality from the Institute of Catholic Culture.
  2. Booklet:  Some Fundamental Principles of Catholic Morality, issued by the Knights of Columbus

Positive Law: A Guide to Happiness

with Fr. Conrad Murphy

Sometimes it seems that the law dominates our lives, but positive law is meant to help us grow in virtue and happiness. Tune into this Catholic Bytes episode to hear Fr. Conrad Murphy continue the discussion on positive law and how its purpose is to lead us to greater freedom.

Further Resources:

  1. Online Audio: Bishop Robert Barron’s homily on law
  2. Online:  Catholic Encyclopedia article on law, with a section on positive law
  3. Online:  Outline of law on Catholic Answers, with a section on positive law

Angels: Purely Spiritual and Super Intelligent Warriors

with Fr. Paul Haverstock

While many believe that modern science has disproved the existence of angels, others believe they are merely cute cuddly cherubims for a nursery. In one short episode, delve into a discussion which not only points to the existence of these invisible and powerful creatures, but also describes their actual nature.

Further Resources:

  1. Online Audio:  Talk on Angels and Demons by Dr. Peter Kreeft
  2. Online Audio: Lighthouse Catholic Media talk on the 9 choirs of angels by Dr. Mark Miravalle
  3. Online:  Article by Joe Heschmeyer: 6 Biblical Reasons to Pray to Angels
  4. Online:  18 Questions on Angels answered by the Baltimore Catechism.. courtesy of Peterlist.com
  5. Online:  Brief article on angels by Fr. Steve Grunow

Positive Law: Decreed and Promulgated

with Fr. Conrad Murphy

While we have already touched upon positive law in previous episodes discussing the different types of law, Fr. Conrad Murphy narrows in on it, addressing the necessity of a spelled out law. Why is natural law not enough? Listen up for your answer . . .

Further Resources:

  1. Online audio: Homily of Bishop Robert Barron where he touches on the importance of laws
  2. Online: Good, concise definition of positive law found on catholicculture.org

Arguing God’s Existence: The Matrix, Gambling, and Gelato

with Fr. David Kidd

What do The Matrix, gambling, and gelato all have in common? Oddly enough, in this Catholic Bytes episode they all deal with the existence of God. Tune in to hear the philosophical arguments for the existence of God offered by the well-known thinkers Descartes, Pascal and Kant, and how we today can be witnesses to that existence.

Further Resources:

  1. Online Audio:  Fr. Mark Spitzer’s Proofs for the Existence of God from Lighthouse Catholic Media.
  2. Online Audio:  Jennifer Fulwiler’s conversion story from Atheism to Catholicism
  3. Online Audio:  Series of video debates on the existence of God by Dr. William Lane Craig
  4. Online Audio:  Good overview of the existence of God by Dr. Peter Kreeft
  5. Book:  On Guard: Defending Your Faith with Reason and Precision, by William Lane Craig

Defining And Distinguishing Law

with Fr. Conrad Murphy

Eternal law, natural law, and positive law – do you ever wonder what they all have in common, or, on the flip side, what distinguishes them from each other? Tune in for a concise and informative episode on the topic of law, its definition, various types, and how, as humans, we need to relate to it.

  1. Online article: Brief explanation of the various types of law at stpeterlist.com
  2. Book: Perfecting Human Actions: St. Thomas Aquinas on Human Participation in Eternal Law, by John Rziha

John 2:1-5: Catholic Devotion to Mary in a Nutshell

with Fr. Michael Niemczak

One commonly known and beloved Gospel story is the Wedding Feast of Cana (John 2:1-5). What is commonly unknown, however, is the depth and richness of this passage on various levels. In fact, we learn not only something about Christ and something about ourselves in this passage, but also the whole of Catholic devotion to Mary.

Resources:

  1. Online Audio:  hour-long talk of Scott Hahn on Mary in the Bible
  2. Online:  Article by Dr. Taylor Marshall discussing Mary’s mediation at the Wedding Feast at Cana
  3. Online:  Excellent brief online “lesson” about Mary and the Wedding Feast at Cana from the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology

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Sts. Cyril and Methodius: Bearers of the Slavonic Language

with Fr. Joseph Rampino

These brothers are best known for developing the Cyrillic alphabet and the Slavonic language, which spurred their mission work in Eastern Europe. They are examples of staying true to the work of Christ, despite the political tensions which surrounded them. Dcn. Joseph Rampino tells the adventurous story of these brothers in this Catholic Bytes episode.

Further Resources:

  1. Online: Notes on Cyril from San Clemente Website
  2. Online Video: Poem by Saint Cyril in Old Church Slavonic
  3. Book: A History of Christendom, Volume 2: The Building of Christendom, by Dr. Warren H. Carroll.  Front Royal: Christendom College Press, 1987.