John Grondelski

64324
The Fight You Want to Lose

The image of the Christian life as a struggle or combat is long established. “Onward, Christian Soldiers” was a motif for confirmandi long before it became a Protestant hymn in mid-19th century England. Christianity’s martial spirit made it a...

64207
Be Not Afraid of Silence — Silence is Critical to Prayer

As I’ve previously written, Father Donald Haggerty’s Contemplative Enigmas focuses on the spirituality of prayer, with major prominence given to the role of silence, both ours to hear God as well as God’s, who chooses to reveal Himself as He...

64217
Some Thoughts on the Coronavirus Crisis

The unique nature of Coronavirus, and what we don’t yet know about its spread, has fostered a sense of panic, not just in the United States but around the world. Some of the reactions to this situation, especially on the part of ecclesiastical...

64067
Is Technology the Enemy of Silence?

While Simon and Garfunkel’s “The Sounds of Silence” bemoans how “silence like a cancer grows,” the truth is that modernity is far more afflicted by a surplus of noise than its deficit. In some way, however, the singers were right: “ten thousand...

63950
‘Gorzkie Żale’ — The Polish Eucharistic Devotion for Lent

Today, I want to introduce English-speaking Catholics to a particular Polish Lenten devotion: Gorzkie żale (Bitter Lamentations). Just as Stations of the Cross are a staple feature in the prayer repertoire in many American parishes on Lenten...

63844
Another Sign of the Times: No Bibles in Hotel Room Drawers

G.K. Chesterton once described the United States as “a nation with the soul of a church,” and while both the Englishman and I might not vouch for the absolute truth of the proposition, it’s also clear that for far longer than many parts of Europe...

63682
Tenebrae is a Treasure Hidden in Shadow

Tenebrae, or a Service of Shadows, was once part of the Church’s Divine Office during Holy Week. It is a service of psalms and readings, primarily from the Book of Lamentations. As the service progressed, the 15 candles on a special candelabrum...

63633
It’s Time to Get Ready for Divine Mercy Sunday

Ash Wednesday is just around the corner, on Feb. 26. Lent is less than a month away, which means it’s also time to plan for Divine Mercy Sunday. Divine Mercy Sunday this year is April 19, the Sunday after Easter (the Second Sunday of Easter). If...

63516
Yes, This is the Pro-Life Generation

The vibrant, voluminous, and vigorous presence of young people in the annual March for Life in Washington gets a lot of notice. “I am the pro-life generation” proclaim many signs, and it’s true: the demographic at the March skews young, and the...

63445
The Presentation: An Offertory of ‘The Light of the Nations’

Feb. 2 falls on a Sunday this year, and so the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord preempts the Fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time. Known unofficially as the Feast of Candlemas (because it was the day candles were blessed in church), it remains —...