Patrick Coffin

55423
A Defense of Commercialized Christmas

Every year around one minute past midnight Nov. 1, when Halloween ends and the malls begin spewing out “Xmas Muzak,” Christians trundle out their well-worn complaints about the tinselly squalor of today’s commercialized Christmas. Don’t get me...

55339
Pro Sports as Substitute Religion

Man was made to worship. It's in his DNA, so to speak, to reach out toward and even to surrender to a Higher Power. The object of his worship will either be the one true God, or any of the myriad of false substitutes like pornography or alcohol...

54821
Why the Centering Prayer Movement is So Off-Center

A technique out there purporting to be a form of Christian prayer has made inroads in countless parishes across the U.S. and Canada. Its promoters try very hard to sound Catholic and monastic, but it is, in fact, not really either. It’s called...

54694
Seek Camaraderie, Because It Will Not Come Looking For You

I’ve been thinking a lot about the need for strong friendships and supportive communities to sustain good mental health. Men in particular are in dire need today for a camaraderie that goes deeper than sports scores and fishing gear. (We men...

54641
Taking the Knee Cuts Both Ways

Show of hands – are you as fed up as I am with the recycled media story about NFL players “taking the knee” to protest how bad (racist, sexist, homophobic, anti-Canadian, fascist) America is? A few thoughts from a non-American who deeply loves...

54470
Small Is Huge and Beautiful

It may be simply that we have fallen natures and therefore tend toward the grandiose. I’m referring to the tendency among so many Catholics to talk about the Culture Crisis and to call for major overhauls, elaborate ideas about how to Turn This...

54308
11 More Ways to Make Enemies in the Church

The other week I posted a list of ten things that are guaranteed to garner enemies if you dare speak or write about them in the Catholic blogosphere. The negative feedback it generated validated my thesis in a marvelous way! Since I couldn’t fit...

54154
Want Enemies? Write About These Ten Things

There is a list of topics that, if Catholic writers dare touch them, will get you immediate and strong objections and bitter complains from readers. In no particular order, unless you enjoy acquiring enemies and readers who associate you with...

54063
The Up Side of Loneliness

Loneliness is hard. Hard for a couple of reasons. First, there’s the randomness of it. You can be stricken at seemingly random times and settings that seem, on the surface, to be counter-intuitive: at a friend’s wedding party, in the bosom of...

54009
The Natural Law is Written and Engraved on Your Soul

Have you ever had the experience of reading a book and wished for the life of you that you had a chance to ask the author a few key questions about that book? It happened to me recently and on a very important subject, the natural law. Before I...