Detailed
Compact
Art
Reverse
October 10, 2019
Knowledge is always good, but St. Thomas Aquinas said curiosity—or the fickle pursuit of unnecessary knowledge—can be a vice. What he meant, and what Fr. Mike means here, is that the methods by which we feed our curiosity, and our motivation for feeding it, can lead to vice if we just want to know something instead of pursuing what we need to know. Those things we say we have to know about because everyone else is talking about them—like that popular show we say we simply cannot miss, or that things someone did that’s none of our business but we just need to know about it—these things can lead us away from a wholehearted pursuit of truth. The counterpart virtue of unhealthy curiosity is studiousness, where the motivation and method of pursuing knowledge are correct. Curiosity is a good place to start, but it should always lead to studiousness, the virtue of great minds.
October 3, 2019
If you’re in any kind of situation in your life where you feel you are limited in what you can control, you may not be as chained to your circumstances as you think. Fr. Mike offers encouragement, saying you can still make interior decisions and have an effect on your circumstances to some extent. You still have agency. Even though you may not be able to change everything you want, you can change your heart. Resentment and bitterness can prevent a great deal of needed change, so if they’re in your heart start by surrendering them to the Lord. This will give you internal freedom similar to what Jesus had when he was suffering on the Cross. Give your circumstances to the Lord and put them under his dominion. This may lead to more pain, but it’s better than staying bitter because if we remain in that bitterness our hearts will become numb and incapable of love.
September 26, 2019
Fr. Mike says the key to making decisions together is distinguishing between preferences and principles. If the reason you’re favoring a choice is a matter of principle, it is your duty to lead the other person in that decision to the truth of that principle. If the choice you’re favoring is just a matter of preference though, charity suggests that you default to the preference of the beloved one involved in the decision instead. Fr. Mike uses going to church as an example. It is a matter of principle that we have to go to Sunday Mass and worship God the way he tells us to, so if someone tells us going to a Catholic Mass is just our preference we can tell them as a matter of fact it’s not. However, if the issue is which church we go to for Sunday Mass, say St. Francis’ Church or St. Andrew’s, more often than not that is just a matter of preference. For a helpful book on decision-making, check out _Pray, Decide, and Don’t Worry _by Jackie and Bobby Angel, with Fr. Mike.
September 19, 2019
Fr. Mike offers the antidote of common sense for the anxiety that often comes after making a big decision. As a campus minister, he sees many students who feel like they made the wrong decision to come to college because things are not the way they imagined. To people in these situations, he advises them to stay the course. Paraphrasing St. Ignatius of Loyola and C.S. Lewis, he says to never change your course in times of desolation when that same course rang true for you in times of consolation. Give yourself a season, time to figure things out. If you’re about to make a big decision and don’t know which course to take, or know someone who is in that situation, check out the new book by Jackie and Bobby Angel, with Fr. Mike Schmitz, Pray, Decide, and Don’t Worry: Five Steps to Discerning God’s Will, now available for pre-order at ascensionpress.com
September 12, 2019
After reading a book on will power, Fr. Mike discovered an important lesson when it comes to how we handle spiritual setbacks. He noticed how resisting sin is a lot like resisting a donut when on a diet. If we resist for some time but then end up giving in and eating the donut, that doesn’t mean all of our progress in the diet is lost. In the same way, if we resist sin for some time but then give in, the grace God offers us through confession can restore us. In fact, it can restore to even higher than we were before. “Law came in, to increase the trespass; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more” (Romans 5:20). So let’s not give up when we fall into sin, but keep our eyes on heaven and God’s grace and live accordingly.
September 5, 2019
Fr. Mike responds to last week’s episode, “Expressing Your Opinions”, where he said when we speak our mind we need to consider why, what, who, and how. We need to discern why we think we should express our opinion. What’s our motive? We need to consider what it is we are commenting on, and whether we are in a position to do so. We need to keep in mind who we are talking to. Are we in an advisory role in their lives? And finally, how are we addressing the issue? Are we being coy or passive aggressive? Are we being harsh and inconsiderate? The apostle James speaks of the tongue being a fire (see James 3:6). He wrote: “Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, for you know that we who teach shall be judged with greater strictness” (James 3:1). In this video, Fr. Mike is not referring to any comments regarding current events in the Church. He’s talking about his experience as a member of his parish and campus ministry community, and the daily experiences we all have as members of the Church. So how do we say what we strongly feel needs to be said? Speak the truth creatively and wisely after discerning things. That’s how the saints did it. In fact, many saints died rather than withholding the truth that needed to be said. But they did this after great prayer and discernment. We have exciting news! Fr. Mike will be joining Jeff Cavins on a pilgrimage to Israel June 1-12, 2020. The pilgrimage is for young adults ages 18-30, and will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to deepen your faith by visiting the places where Jesus walked. Find out more here.
August 29, 2019
Fr. Mike says there are four things you should ask yourself before expressing your opinion: why, what, who, and how. First, evaluate why you’re expressing this thought. Is it because it’s the right thing to do, or is it because you are trying to one-up someone? Second, what is your opinion? Is it something true, like a principal, or is it just a preference? Third, who are you talking to and what is your relationship to this person? Lastly, how are you expressing yourself? Even if you are totally in the right, the way you say it is of the utmost importance in order for people to listen. If you consider these questions when expressing your opinion or trying to correct someone, you’ll be much more likely to find a willing listener. Check out the "2020 Vision" Young Adult Pilgrimage to the Holy Land with Fr. Mike and Jeff Cavins at jeffcavins.com
August 22, 2019
Catholics use Scripture and Tradition because Scripture tells us to use both. St. Paul wrote to the Thessalonians: “So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter” (2 Thessalonians 2:15). If God wanted us to use Scripture alone, wouldn’t he tell us as much in the Bible? True, St. Paul emphasizes the value of Scripture: “All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). However, St. Paul is just as emphatic about the value of the Church: “If I am delayed, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and bulwark of the truth” (1 Timothy 3:15). Fr. Mike explains how the Catholic Church has made all of God’s gifts more accessible to humanity through the ages. Scripture, the Magisterium, and Tradition are not opposing authorities battling for power. They are three pillars that support and inform each other—making God all the more present to us.
August 15, 2019
If we can’t use the Lord’s name in vain, can we joke about God? Fr. Mike makes the case that there is room for humor about God in the context of love. No one in the universe or beyond it deserves more honor, respect, and reverence than God, and we jeopardize our souls if we fail to see this. At the same time, though, Jesus called us his friends (John 15:15). Friends can joke about each other because they know there is mutual love and respect there. It goes even deeper than that though, Fr. Mike argues. God is calling us to a whole different kind of relationship, a whole different kind of intimacy, through his son Jesus. If we enter into that relationship and nurture it, we may discover that God does indeed have a sense of humor, a whole new sense of humor we didn’t even think was possible. Catechism paragraph on the Second Commandment: “Blasphemy is directly opposed to the second commandment. It consists in uttering against God - inwardly or outwardly - words of hatred, reproach, or defiance; in speaking ill of God; in failing in respect toward him in one's speech; in misusing God's name. St. James condemns those "who blaspheme that honorable name [of Jesus] by which you are called" (James 2:7). The prohibition of blasphemy extends to language against Christ's Church, the saints, and sacred things. It is also blasphemous to make use of God's name to cover up criminal practices, to reduce peoples to servitude, to torture persons or put them to death. The misuse of God's name to commit a crime can provoke others to repudiate religion” (CCC 2148)
August 8, 2019
Fr. Mike points out five things the Church can learn from one of the latest fitness crazes, Crossfit: In Crossfit gyms, you’re seen, you’re known, and you’re missed when you’re not there. How often does someone stop coming to church without us even noticing? Crossfit is functional fitness, exercises that help you live your life. If we can bridge the gap between what we do on Sunday and our lifestyle, we will see how church helps us be more virtuous in our everyday life. Crossfit has scaled workouts. Crossfit trainers ask you what you can do. What if we made spiritual exercises tailored to each individual and what they can do? Crossfit is challenging. Pursuing Jesus is a challenge. What if we challenged Catholics, calling them to something higher? People doing Crossfit are willing to be led and to learn. What if pastors were more willing to be leaders, and parishioners more willing to be led?
August 1, 2019
Not every protagonist in the Bible makes the morally good choice. The Bible is not a collection of stories that tell us how to live. It’s not a bunch of fables; the stuff in the Bible really happened. If the characters who we are told to look up to always did the right thing, it wouldn’t have much to teach us about real life. In real life, we all make wrong decisions, and the stories in the Bible show us the consequences of those decisions.
July 25, 2019
Fr. Mike answers that God does not make us with flaws, but we are all born with the unfortunate effects of original sin. We were all made in the image and likeness of God, but if we feel like some sinful behavior has been a part of us for as long as we can remember, that part doesn’t come from God. It comes from our fallen nature. Whether or not we were “born that way”, God still wants to make us holy and wipe away even the most deep-seated blemishes. God loves us just as we are, but loves us too much to keep us that way. Admit it, acknowledge it, accept it, but don’t stop there. Allow God to transform it into something that can give him glory. “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:.13).
July 18, 2019
Fr. Mike offers a follow-up to his video on Dr. John Gottman’s “four horsemen of the apocalypse” with this video on Dr. Gottman’s proposed remedy: the Golden Ratio. For every one instance of these four horsemen that signify a relationship is falling apart—which are defensiveness, criticism, stonewalling, and contempt—there should be five instances of the opposite. The four horsemen still rear their heads in the healthy relationships that Dr. Gottman observed, but these relationships have the following interactions five times as often: Giving respect and honoring the other person Building up the other person and affirming them Meeting the other person where they are Opening up to receive their questions and comments in a positive manner If you feel like you’re in a relationship where the four horsemen show up too often, try putting this Golden Ratio into practice. See more at media.ascensionpress.com
July 11, 2019
Fr. Mike goes all the way back to Genesis to explain why Catholics have a pope. God established the kingdom of Israel with the twelve sons of Jacob. Centuries later, he appointed David as the king who would unite this kingdom. Centuries after that kingdom was divided, Jesus established a new kingdom by appointing the twelve apostles. To unite this new kingdom, which is the Church, he appointed Peter as his vicar here on earth. Jesus is the king, but he gave the keys of the kingdom to Peter. This means Peter and his successors play the role of the “prime minister”, or the right-hand-man, or the steward of the king while Jesus is gone. The papacy may be a divisive topic today, but clearly God gave his Church a pope as a sign of unity for all who are a part of the new kingdom Christ established.
July 4, 2019
We hear the phrase “in the world but not of it” quite often. But how do we live that out in our everyday lives? Fr. Mike gives a crash course on how to follow Christ in situations where there may be tension between you and someone you’re close to. Reminding us of Matthew 10:34, “I have not come to bring peace, but a sword,” Fr. Mike explains that Jesus is a cause of division. As followers of Christ, we have to acknowledge and accept the painful reality that following him will cause us to be divided from many people we love. Once we accept that, allowing God’s love to fill our hearts, we will search for ways to love those who strongly disagree with us. See more at ascensionpress.com
June 27, 2019
When it comes to trying to control God and keep him at a distance in our lives, there are at least two ways that we go about it. Either we lay low and stay out of trouble, or we excel at whatever task we’ve currently been assigned to. Both strategies intend to keep God out of our lives so we can keep doing what we’re doing, because we’re comfortable doing it. Well, if you’re in one of those camps, get ready because God can call you to something different any minute now. You may not have even noticed yourself slipping into one of these subtle thought processes that so many of us slip into. That’s why it’s important to give our lives to God at least daily. Try doing it first thing in the morning before anything else. That’s how Fr. Mike does it, and it seems to have worked out quite well for him. “Every branch of mine that bears no fruit, he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit.” (John 15:2).
June 20, 2019
Fr. Mike is honest about why it’s so hard for us to make friends. A necessity for friendship is time, something that many of us simply don’t have. More than that, true friendship requires a painful level of vulnerability and transparency. When asking yourself who you are willing to be friends with, you’re really asking “Who are you willing to give access to your wounds?” With that in mind, consider what Jesus said: “No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you” (John 15:15). How much time do you spend with Jesus? Will you give him access to your wounds? This is afterall what it means to be a friend. Are you a friend of Jesus?
June 13, 2019
Fr. Mike asks if the bad things you think you don’t have the capacity to do are actually just things you don’t have the opportunity to do. A friend of Fr. Mike’s was recovering from an addiction, and this friend noticed how he was deceiving himself. He was telling himself “I would never …” when he should have been saying, “I haven’t yet ...” Many times the sins we avoid we have only avoided because we haven’t had the opportunity to commit them. Acknowledging that we may do something regretful if given the opportunity is a great—although difficult—exercise in self-knowledge that could prevent some serious sin in the future. This week, consider the benefits that come with strengthening your self-discipline. Make an extra attempt to reinforce a virtue that may help you combat the corresponding vice. This will go a long way in increasing your holiness.
June 6, 2019
How we spend our time is one of the most valuable decisions we make, because time is one thing we can never get back once it’s gone. Maybe God is calling you to do something more with your time, in this very moment even, but distractions are pulling you in too many different directions to focus. Make no mistake, distractions steal our time, even those we willfully choose. Even worse, as St. Alphonsus Ligouri said, voluntary distraction can steal our soul. Maybe there’s a dozen different things you know you should be doing, but you can’t choose one, so you choose none. If that’s the case, Fr. Mike says to take solace in the fact that you only have to choose one task, because the reality is that multitasking doesn’t work anyway. Holiness is to choose one thing, namely to say yes to God’s will. So choose your one sacrifice, and say yes to the focused and singular task of holiness.
May 30, 2019
For many people, the Catholic Church’s teaching on in vitro fertilization and contraception is a hard one, but it is in concordance with the nature of things. The nature of a thing, as Fr. MIke puts it, is its “what-it’s-for-ness”. Sex is for procreation and the unity of the couple. Equally important is the fact that sex, not in vitro fertilization, is the natural way to bring forth a new life. Contraception and in vitro fertilization violate the nature of not only sex, but also the nature of the person and life itself. If you feel that this teaching prohibits you from being truly happy, Fr. Mike offers encouragement. It may not seem fair to us at first, but the deep abiding peace we acquire from living by God’s plan is better than anything we could acquire by doing things our way.
May 23, 2019
Perhaps you’ve felt the temptation to be a cookie-cutter Catholic, one who does all the Catholic things that other Catholics are doing because they think … well … that’s what makes us Catholic. But comparison is kind of like the cousin of envy, Fr. Mike says. If we only express our faith in certain ways because that’s what other believers around us our doing, we should re-examine our relationship with Christ. After all, he is the only one we should pattern our life after.
May 16, 2019
What good does feeling sorry for yourself do? Fr. Mike points out a hard truth in saying—while you have the right to grieve when tragic things happen in your life—you never have the right, or permission, to feel sorry for yourself. All it does is shrink the universe down to the size of you. It blocks out the blessings God gave you that you should be thankful for, and paralyzes you from joyfully giving to others. When you feel the temptation to feel sorry for yourself coming on, in the words of St. Paul, Fr. Mike recommends: “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful” (Colossians 3:15). Quote from G.I. Jane: “I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A bird will fall frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself” (Viggo Mortensen as Master Chief John James Urgayle in G.I. Jane, original quote from D.H. Lawrence, 20th century English writer).
May 9, 2019
Many people say God acted much differently in the Old Testament than he did in the New Testament. They say the God of the New Testament is merciful and compassionate, but in the Old Testament he is often harsh and unforgiving. A thorough look at Scripture reveals that this is not the case. God is in fact merciful and just throughout the Bible. Fr. Mike clears up a great deal of confusion between the Old and New Testaments, and shows how God has stayed quite the same since before the beginning of time until now. This isn't the first time Fr. Mike's been asked about God changing, check out his original answer here.
May 2, 2019
God wants you to be holy, so he is going to set you on a path of purification if you choose to do his will. He is the one who is going to make you holy. This process is going to strip away many things you hold dear. It’s going to require active participation in his will, doing what is right and good. But it’s also going to require passive acceptance of things that are out of your control. See everything you do and experience as a chance to grow in holiness, and God will make you into a saint.
April 25, 2019
Jesus asked the crippled man at the pool of Bethesda, “Do you want to be well?” It seems like an obvious question, but—as Fr. Mike explains—in order for this man to desire healing, he had to believe he could be healed. So many of us have given up on the thought that God can change us from whatever it is we don’t want to be into whatever it is we want to be, and what we believe he wants us to be. Whether it’s an illness, lack of willpower, or just lack of ability, we believe our problem is chronic. Jesus’ question to the man at the pool is an appeal to the man’s belief that God can heal him. Believing God can make a drastic change for the better in our own lives may just be the key to actually making that change happen.
April 18, 2019
There are many great ways to describe hope, but Fr. Mike defines it as “trust in another extended into the future.” He recalls two stories from the Gospels that exemplify what hope is not. When Peter denied Christ, and when the two travelers on the road to Emmaus abandoned their hope in Christ. Peter had Jesus (they were basically best friends), but—by denying him—was essentially saying he didn’t need Jesus. The travelers needed Jesus, but the way they saw it they no longer had him. Fr. Mike explains how hope is knowing that we have Jesus and knowing that we need him. This hope can empower us to courageously get through our darkest hours.
April 11, 2019
Fr. Mike’s words on taking up our crosses may come as a relief to many of us. He rejects the “harder is holier” approach, and reminds us that taking up our crosses is ultimately about having more freedom. Christ says “My yoke is easy, and my is burden light” (Matthew 11:30). God has a particular task for each of us, and taking up our crosses means denying what we want for our lives so that we can do God’s will. After all, that is what we were made to do and the only way to truly be free. “Then Jesus told his disciples, ‘If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (Matthew 16:24-25).
April 4, 2019
Jiminy Cricket said “Always let your conscience be your guide,” but how do I know if I have a good conscience? A good conscience more often is concerned with our responsibilities than with our rights. It is more preoccupied with what God wants than with what I want. Fr. Mike tells us, “Stop thinking like the world and start thinking like God.” The world will have us think our conscience is the final judge on what is right and wrong, but as Catholics we know that God is the final judge, and our consciences need to be formed—in fact, transformed—to abide by and abide in his will. “Do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may prove what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2). Interesting tidbit: As you may know, “Jiminy Cricket” is a minced oath for “Jesus Christ”; but did you know that Blessed John Henry Newman considered the conscience to be the “aboriginal vicar of Christ”?
March 28, 2019
When Catholics call Mary their mother, it may seem like they are taking away some of the respect due to Jesus and giving it to Mary. This is far from the case. Fr. Mike points out two reasons why calling Mary our mother can improve our relationship with Christ, and strengthen our faith life. Loving the people Jesus loves helps you love him more. The more you love Mary the more you love God. Jesus gave Mary to us as our Mother on the Cross. “When Jesus saw his mother, and the disciple whom he loved standing near, he said to his mother, ‘Woman, behold, your son!’ Then he said to the disciple, ‘Behold, your mother!’ And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home” (John 19:26-27).
March 21, 2019
Fr. Mike discusses four signs that your relationship is in danger of falling apart, especially when it comes to stonewalling. Stonewalling, as used in the context of this episode, is when we refuse to communicate or cooperate with someone. Psychologist Dr. John Gottman calls it one of the “four horsemen of the apocalypse”, or one of four types of expression that indicate that your relationship is falling apart. The other three are defensiveness, criticism, and contempt. As Christians, we should always pay attention to the one who is communicating with us. After all, we would expect at least that much from them when communicating with them. Loving someone means seeing them. By seeing, here we mean literally looking them in the eyes when they talk to you, but also understanding them and seeing them as a person made in God’s image.
March 14, 2019
Fr. Mike is asked a lot about what to do when your life is thrown off course by a breakup. In a previous episode, Fr. Mike discussed four questions to ask yourself when discerning God’s will for your life. When presented with a new door (or big decision), ask yourself: Is it good? Is it open? Is it wise? Is it something I want? Now when applying this discernment process to a relationship, you have to remember that the other person is likely asking him or herself the same questions. The hardest heartbreak, though, comes when the first three questions check out but the fourth question—Is this something I want?—does not. In these situations, the one thing Fr. Mike says not to do is blame God. If you’re the one choosing to break up with your significant other, it’s easy to deflect the blame onto God and say he told you to do it. It’s more likely, however, that God gave you the freedom to choose what to do for yourself. So take responsibility. If you are the one who was dumped, God still has a plan for you. You are more than a footnote to the life of your former boyfriend or girlfriend, so don’t let anything he or she said make you feel that way. Go and find where God is leading you next.
March 7, 2019
What does the Israelites’ forty years in the desert tell us about the purpose of Lent? Sure, they both involve the number forty—which often represents a time of test and trial in the Bible—but what’s the more important connection? The Israelites’ time in the desert and our forty-day Lenten fast represent God’s invitation for us to trust him completely. Fr. Mike explains, the Israelites did not believe the Lord could bring them into the Promised Land because it was inhabited by a people much more powerful and larger than Israel—they didn’t trust him even after he delivered them from slavery to the largest civilization on the planet, Egypt. We can be the same way. We think God can’t give us the strength to overcome this or that sin or habit. But purpose of Lent is to set aside time for us to trust God completely so we can see that he is all we need.
February 28, 2019
Fr. Mike knows the tricks we can play on ourselves when it comes to picking something for Lent. So he gives a straightforward guideline: Don’t pick something that’s arbitrary. Pick something that is necessary. In other words, don’t say you’re giving up watermelon when you know you will hardly eat watermelon anyway; and don’t give up hot showers if you know cold showers actually won’t help you grow in holiness. We can easily fool ourselves into thinking strictness equates to holiness. Likewise, we can fall into the trap of thinking that the easiest thing will be the most helpful. What do I really need to do or give up for Lent? If I take an honest look inside myself, it may be something difficult, but I will know.
February 21, 2019
The value of a new parishioner introducing him or herself to parish life and just asking the priest, “How can I help?” is priceless. When entering a new community, we may have all of these ideas about what we can do to help, but to listen and simply tell the leaders that you are available shows humility and understanding. Fr. Mike knows firsthand about all of the different types of parishioners who are on fire for the Faith, and want to do something to enrich parish life. The ones who end up helping the most are those who in essence say, “I am your servant. Tell me what I can do for you.”
February 14, 2019
Fr. Mike breaks down the real definition of love, which is willing the good of the other for the other. He goes further than that though, saying that if we truly believe in Christ, then the loving thing to do would be to share Christ with others by being his witness. St. Valentine risked his life by being a witness for Christ and for love. In our calling as Christians, let’s be courageous and love others not just by doing good deeds for them, but by sharing Christ with them.
February 7, 2019
Fr. Mike explains how God restores our brokenness, especially when it comes to our bodies. So often, we find that the more precious a thing is, the more fragile it is. And when something precious is broken, we often think it’s become worthless. Like when we break a fragile teacup, we throw it away because it no longer has value. But that’s not the way it is with our bodies. God created us to be temples of the Holy Spirit, something very precious. But we’re not like fragile teacups. If we’re broken, if we’ve been abused, if we’ve been taken advantage of, or even if we’ve chosen to give in to temptation, we’re not worthless. God restores us. And through his grace, we are restored to even greater glory.
January 31, 2019
Yes, you are a burden. We are all burdens, including Fr. Mike, but we are burdens worth carrying. Many of us choose to deal with our problems on our own because we don’t want to bring our mess into other people’s lives. But the very nature of love is to sacrifice for others, and we cannot have any meaningful relationships in our lives if we do not share our burdens and bear some of the weight of other people’s burdens. “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.”—Galatians 6:2
January 24, 2019
It may seem too difficult, or even unrealistic, to be a saint today. The reality is though, a saint is simply someone who has conformed their will to the Father’s will rather than the spirit of the age. Fr. Mike mentions three popular mentalities that prevent us from becoming saints: Our hearts want instant gratification, while becoming like Christ is a process. Fr. Mike’s advice is learn to love the process. We like keeping our options open, but becoming a saint requires giving everything to Christ. We lack a fighting spirit. A saint needs a willingness to fight the good fight, especially when the spiritual battle is hardest. Fr. Mike makes it abundantly clear that the only thing preventing us from becoming a saint is ourselves, because God’s grace is enough.
January 17, 2019
God has his commandments and everything, but aren’t there times when there are exceptions to God’s rule? It’s a trick we’ve all tried to pull. When a particular sin is too hard for us to avoid, we say to God—or perhaps a priest—something like, “I know the Church says don’t do this thing, but in my case it’s different.” In my case, there are obstacles that make avoiding the sin impossible. In my case, I think doing that thing is justified because of xyz, in my case … etcetera. This is what Fr. Mike calls exceptionism (not to be confused with exceptionalism). Exceptionism, Fr. Mike says, is the belief that God will make an exception for you when it comes to his judgment of a certain sin. There’s a reason why we say justice is blind, and our God is the God of justice. He will always be merciful to the contrite heart, but—contrary to what many people believe today—he doesn’t make exceptions to the law he gave us.
January 10, 2019
Why is skipping mass a mortal sin? And when we do go to mass, why do we need to receive communion in a state of grace? It’s tempting to believe we can love God in whatever way suits us, but that’s not how love works. The way we express our love for God is through obedience and worship. Fr. Mike speaks a harsh truth when he says, “If you love God on your own terms, you don’t love God, you love yourself.” In the first of two explanations, Fr. Mike explains that going to Mass on Sunday is our weekly chance to prove our love for God. Fr. Mike’s second lesson in this video addresses the issue of receiving Communion in the state of mortal sin, which follows the logic of the first lesson above. Communion with God is only possible once we have been reconciled with God and his Church. Both Christ and St. Paul make this clear: “So if you are offering your gift at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift” (Matthew 5:23-24). “Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord.” (1 Corinthians 11:27). Fr. Mike briefly addresses what sin is, and directs his viewers to this previous episode of his wherein he addresses the topic more thoroughly: What is Sin?
January 3, 2019
Who would have thought algebra and data could be the key to discernment? Fr. Mike explains that the discernment journey isn’t always about having this epiphany moment where your life’s purpose immediately becomes clear to you. Figuring out what God’s will is for you sometimes requires a step-by-step process where you gather data, so you can come closer to the answer you’re looking for. That’s how Fr. Mike found his vocation as a priest. It required a lot prayer, time in adoration, talking with others, and visits to seminaries. Only once he gathered enough data to be able to “solve for x” was he certain that the priesthood was the right choice.
December 27, 2018
Fr. Mike explains why "It's a Wonderful Life" is his favorite Christmas movie and how it can help us understand the importance of duty and love. Spoiler Alert "It's a Wonderful Life" is a classic, but there's a theme carried through the movie that is rarely discussed—the role of duty. If you lived a life without responsibilities, you would be living a life without relationships. In "It's a Wonderful Life," George Bailey's life is driven by duty, but it's transformed by the love he finds in his relationships with others. Hopefully, our life is driven by a sense of duty towards God, but we need to remember that our lives are transformed by the love of God. This Christmas, remember that your life has meaning, your life carries with it important duties, and that God, who has not forgotten you, will transform your life.
December 20, 2018
Good people go to heaven when they die, right? Well, according to the Gospels, not exactly. Fr. Mike Schmitz points to at least four things Christ says we need for salvation: Baptism (John 3) The Eucharist (John 6) Faith (Romans 10:9) Doing the Father’s will (Matthew 25:31-46) None of them are “be a good person”; and it’s probably better that way because, especially today, everyone has a different idea of what is good. Christ has given us everything we need to achieve salvation. He wants us all to be at his wedding feast, including you; but unless you do what is necessary to get to the wedding, you won’t be there. Considering what Fr. Mike is saying, these words of Christ make much more sense: “Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few” (Matthew 7:13-14). Fr. Mike quotes the Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraph 847. Below is the paragraph in full: "This affirmation is not aimed at those who, through no fault of their own, do not know Christ and his Church: Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or his Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do his will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience - those too may achieve eternal salvation."
December 13, 2018
You may have heard the phrase memento mori (remember your death)—especially if you hang out with those strange Catholics—but did you know there are three meanings woven into those two words? Sure, the immediate thought that comes to mind may be the fact that someday we will die; and this is good to remember because that day could be any day, so we should live accordingly. What people may not recognize, though, is that memento mori could also be a reminder to the Christian that we have died to ourselves, so that we may gain eternal life in Christ. As St. Paul says, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live but Christ who lives in me” (Galatians 2:20). The life you live is not your own. Remember, as a Christian you have died to yourself. Entering your day with that in mind may be difficult if you want to live for yourself, but it could also be liberating if we give everything to God. Thirdly, it is good to “remember your death” because it is a reminder of the joy that will come when we live with Christ for eternity. Remembering our death in that way can fill us with the strongest kind of hope.
December 6, 2018
To be blessed means to holy, and to be holy means to be set apart for God. Fr. Mike reminds us of our calling to be holy, because, as Christians, we have been blessed by Baptism. Being set apart doesn't mean to be physically separated from everything else. It means that something is dedicated to fulfilling God's purpose. For example, if you've ever gotten your throat blessed during the feast of St. Blasie, then your throat is set apart for the purposes of God. That means when you use your voice to say something untrue or mean, you're violating the purpose of your voice, because it has been dedicated to God's will. So, be blessed. Make God’s will present in the world through your presence.
November 29, 2018
A sin is not simply breaking the rules. It’s when we say in our hearts, “God, I know what you want and I don’t care. I want what I want.” Fr. Mike makes it abundantly clear that sin is defiance toward God—usually in favor of self-interest. So often, when Catholics talk about sin people see our sense of morality as a set of rules that we arbitrarily follow. Those who criticize the Church’s moral teachings often accuse Catholics of misinterpreting Christ’s words when they are the ones who are twisting his words, while failing to recognize how our relationship with God is in the balance.
November 22, 2018
Fr. Mike says giving thanks is not only good and polite. It’s not just a thoughtful gesture. Giving thanks is necessary. We begin Mass by saying “It is right and just” to give God thanks. Not only that, the priest continues by saying: “It is our duty and salvation always and everywhere to give you thanks.” Our duty and our salvation. We proclaim this every week, and giving thanks is a huge part of the Mass (the very word Eucharist means to give thanks). But do we mean it? Do we give proper thanks to God for the miraculous gifts he has given us to enjoy every day? Our health, sight, hearing, even simply having someone who cares about you, all of these things are blessings we should thank God for because there are many who do not enjoy them.
November 15, 2018
Fr. Mike answers some hard questions from his #askfrmike inquirers, starting with a question about the controversial book and movie, “Silence”, wherein two renowned Portuguese priests travel to Japan and deny Christ to prevent the suffering of their parishioners. After telling the story, Fr. Mike says if we ever were placed in such a dire situation, the question would not be “What should I do?” but rather, “What is the right thing to do?” Fr. Mike clarifies, “To deny Jesus will always be the wrong thing to do.” Blaming someone for not denying Jesus, and thereby not preventing suffering, is a red herring because it distracts people from the ones truly causing the suffering, the actual torturers. Answering another question from his viewers, Fr. Mike addresses the need to keep a healthy balance between caring for our bodies and caring for our souls. That means putting prayer and time with Jesus before working out.
November 8, 2018
We all have those people in our lives whom we love, but just ask too much of us. Establishing limitations in relationships can be hard, but we need boundaries. Even Jesus did it when he spent time with just his disciples, or just his apostles; or just Peter, James, and John; or even just his father in heaven. Fr. Mike explains not just why we need boundaries, but how we could do so without coming across as glib or too harsh. He talks about how establishing boundaries will help us more effectively live the Christian life, and even help the one to whom those boundaries apply.
November 1, 2018
We use the term “friend” loosely, introducing casual acquaintances as “My friends Lucy and John.” But what is friendship, really? Fr. Mike uses Aristotle’s three kinds of friendship—pleasant friendships, useful friendships, and virtuous friendships—as guidelines. While all three can be good, the first two can end up being flimsy and fleeting; but the third kind, virtuous friendships, really get to the heart of what good friends are to us. They are on the same mission, they have many of the same goals, we can even kind of see another self within these friends. Fr. Mike emphasizes the need for us to have more of these kinds of friendships, saying that if we don’t think they matter we may just be distracting ourselves from our loneliness. Don't forget to check out Fr. Mike’s newest project Quick Catholic Lessons with Fr. Mike (https://bit.ly/2PmpYzw), a feature-packed teacher’s guide designed to accompany Fr. Mike’s most popular videos, presented on a convenient DVD.
October 25, 2018
Father Mike Schmitz forgot to say one thing in his video “We’re Not Just Cosmic Accidents” – God loves you. In his previous video Fr. Mike made comments on The Greatest Showman song “This is Me”. To elaborate on his original message, he quotes Pope Benedict XVI, saying, “Until I am accepted and loved by another, I cannot accept and love myself. But even then the sense is fragile, because all human acceptance is fragile. Ultimately, we need a sense of being accepted unconditionally. Only if God accepts me and I have become convinced of this, do I know definitely it is good that I exist.” As Romans Chapter 5 states, “God proved his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
October 18, 2018
Fr. Mike shares three things that will help you build healthy relationships. If a couple wants to get married, that’s something we should celebrate. However, that doesn’t mean we should blindly encourage them no matter what, and offer cliche advice like, “You’re in love, and that’s all that matters,” or “Do what you heart tells you.” No matter how convincing a couple’s love for each other seems, there are some things that always need to be considered, especially in young relationships between two people who want to rush into marriage. When it comes to relationships, there are three things Fr. Mike says to keep in mind: 1) There are some things only time can reveal 2) Let your relationship be the actual age it is 3) Learn how to make decisions together
October 11, 2018
Blessed Father Stanley Rother was a farmer, priest, and martyr from Oklahoma who found a way to give everything to the Lord, even his greatest struggles and disappointments, because he knew nothing is wasted when given to God. Fr. Mike tells Father Rother’s story, and shows what we can learn from the undying love for Jesus this American farmer had. Fr. Mike encourages, no matter what hardships you’re dealing with, give them to God and your story will give him glory; bringing your life to fulfillment in the process.
October 4, 2018
Without our dignity that comes from God, we are just cosmic accidents. This is a humbling realization, but one that can also be empowering. Fr. Mike says we often misunderstand humility because we think it involves thinking less of ourselves. What it really involves is greater focus on God’s power and goodness, because he is the source of whatever power and goodness we have. As C.S. Lewis wrote, “A really humble man will not be thinking about humility. He will not be thinking about himself at all.” For more on C.S. Lewis, check out this article, C. S. Lewis on Humility, by Dr. Andrew Swafford.
September 27, 2018
Happiness is circumstantial. In fact, the word has the same root as the word “happenstance”. And yet, despite how fickle it is, many of us base our lives on the pursuit of happiness. Joy, on the other hand, is the abiding and pervasive sense of well-being. Fr. Mike explains that joy is, as G.K. Chesterton wrote, “the gigantic secret of the Christian.” The Christian understands that God knows his name, loves him, and is here with him now. This never changes, and it is what gives the Christian a perpetual joy to which happiness cannot compare.
September 14, 2018
Sometimes it can be hard to respect the character of a person you really don’t like. That’s no problem, says Fr. Mike, because you can still respect them as a human being and—if they are in a position of authority—you can still respect their position. Not everyone in our lives is going to earn the kind of respect that Fr. Mike would equate with trust. Those who have a respectable character will earn that trust though, and that’s the kind of person we should strive to be in other people’s lives.
September 6, 2018
Sure, there are times when it’s just hard to believe what the Catholic Faith tells us, but when someone says “I’m losing my faith,” or “I lost my faith,” there’s something much more serious going on there. Fr. Mike examines this problem, but emphasizes that we actually can’t lose faith because it’s a gift from God. We can use that gift wrongly and put it into what Fr. Mike calls “God’s chief rivals” or, in other words, idols; but the faith is still there and we can still put it in God if we simply choose to. Maybe God is giving you the gift of faith right now, and maybe you just have to use it the way he intends.
August 30, 2018
Anyone can and should condemn the sins of the priests and cardinals that have been all over the news. The real challenge is to ask God what he is expecting us to do within this time, our time, in history. If he has created us to live in these difficult times for Catholics, he must be calling us to some great task to help bring renewal to his Church and individual souls. Here's a link to last week's episode.
July 12, 2018
The wisdom he shares here is akin to that of many successful, insightful writers such as Cal Newport and Josef Pieper. You can find the works Fr. Mike references here: Cal Newport's Deep Work Josef Pieper's Leisure, the Basis of Culture
April 20, 2018
Fr. Mike offers a message that may be hard to accept for some of us, but his intention is to help us live happily and get to heaven. In a culture where anything goes, the Catholic views on dating can seem strict, but behind them are very good reasons. If you’ve ever wondered why the Church advises unmarried couples to avoid living together or spending the night together, listen to this episode to find out.
April 13, 2018
Every generation has its own code words for things that are taboo, but when watching TV and relaxing could mean having casual sex, it’s fair to say we’ve reached a tipping point in our culture. In this episode, Fr. Mike examines the “Netflix and chill” lifestyle, borrowing some ideas from Boston College professor Kerry Cronin, who appears in a new documentary called The Dating Project, which addresses the problems inherent in a hookup culture.
April 6, 2018
Have you ever left Mass feeling like the homily just wasn't satisfactory? In this episode, Father Mike Schmitz shows us how to always gain what we need from the Sunday readings, regardless of the quality of the homily. Father Mike also tells us not to be so hard on priests when they miss the mark, because their job is harder than it seems from the pew.
March 29, 2018
This episode is not a new autobiography by F​r.​ Mike Schmitz. It’s about everyone’s autobiography, which is—in a word—the ​crucifix. Jesus​'​ dying on the Cross sums up every person’s life story because it shows what our sins did and God's power to forgive them, so our lives can be defined by love and not shame. This Good Friday, let God’s sacrifice be your identity.
March 23, 2018
It's easy to think of courage as something we only need when facing our greatest fears, but in this episode Fr. Mike explains how courage is necessary to live out every virtue. He shows how cowardice can seem harmless in the ways it sneaks into our thoughts, and shares words from great saints who commissioned the faithful to practice fortitude in our everyday lives.
March 16, 2018
We fast during Lent for many reasons. Whether those reasons are good or not is hard to tell sometimes, though. Sometimes we fast and do penance for personal reasons (I want to lose weight), or for practical reasons (I can save my family money or feed poor children), but too often our fasting is not actually about God. In this episode, Fr. Mike reminds us that God cares about us so much he is willing to notice our sacrifices—no matter how meager they may seem—and he wants us to use those sacrifices to draw closer to him.
March 7, 2018
Fr. Mike discusses why confessing the same sins over and over isn’t entirely a bad thing. He also offers some ways we can make our confessions more effective in helping us avoid those same sins in the future. The practice of naming, confessing, and renouncing our sins in Jesus’ name before, during, or after confession is one suggestion Fr. Mike shares. He also encourages us to move past simply wanting forgiveness and into having true repentance so we can experience deep conversion and freedom.
March 5, 2018
If you’ve ever been in a conversation where you had to defend the Catholic Faith, people have probably asked you this question. It can be a tough one to answer, but Fr. Mike lays out many reasons why confessing our sins to a priest makes perfect sense. Confession isn’t a man-made tradition of the Church but rather a valuable gift given by God and rooted in Scripture. Fr. Mike is also a presenter in these faith formation programs from Ascension: Belonging: Baptism in the Family of God Chosen: This is Your Catholic Faith Altaration: The Mystery of the Mass Revealed YOU: Life, Love, and the Theology of the Body Get 18 of Fr. Mike’s best Ascension Presents videos in this exclusive DVD from Ascension: Ascension Presents … Fr. Mike Schmitz
February 26, 2018
One of the most common Bible verses people use to try and debunk Catholic teaching is Matthew 23:9, where Jesus says, “Call no man on earth father.” In this episode, Fr. Mike Schmitz guides us through the New Testament to give us the context and significance of this teaching. By the end of this episode, you will see that Christ’s words here have much deeper meaning than what many people would believe.
February 16, 2018
Envy and jealousy sneakily gain control of our minds. They don’t feel like other sins that give at least a brief moment of gratification, so it’s easy to dismiss these disordered thoughts. In this episode, Fr. Mike explains why we need to focus in on whatever jealousy or envy we may have in our lives, because it could inhibit our relationship with God. The remedy he shares is a reminder of who we are in God’s eyes, which is all that matters.
February 9, 2018
When we are discerning God’s will in our lives, we often get overwhelmed by the anxiety of making the right choice and don’t permit ourselves to consider what we actually want. In this episode, Fr. Mike Schmitz encourages us to weigh all the choices that are open to us, good for us, wise, and desired by us. The last of the four is often overlooked, so Fr. Mike explains why it is just as important to pay attention to our heart’s desires as it is to consider the other three factors when we are discerning a decision.
February 1, 2018
You may have heard priests or devout Catholics say something like, “If only people knew what was happening at Mass, they’d be more willing to go.” That may be true, but in this episode, Fr. Mike also gets to the more practical—and painfully direct—heart of the matter. He points out that the heart of worship is sacrifice, and ultimately it’s not about how engaged or entertained we are. Mass isn’t about us; it’s about God and what he asks of us.
January 29, 2018
God made the world—and you—on purpose. What is that purpose? Well, that’s what St. John Paul II went to great lengths to explain in his Theology of the Body talks, which Fr. Mike sums up beautifully in this episode. With profound simplicity, Fr. Mike—inspired by St. John Paul II—shares the fundamental truths of this ingenious vision of humanity and sexuality. Made in God’s image and likeness, you are your body, and you are made for love. What you do with your body matters. You’ll have to watch the video to get the last and most powerful point. It’s amazing.
January 18, 2018
St. Paul wrote to the Thessalonians, “In all things give thanks” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). In this episode, Fr. Mike shows us how to live up to that challenge, helping us to see that everything we complain about can be viewed as an opportunity to praise God. This isn’t just good advice. It is what’s required of us as Christians. Sure, we will have times when we need to vent to a confidant; but—as Fr. Mike suggests—keeping our complaining to a minimum is a great way to prove we are striving to do God’s will.
January 15, 2018
If we want to be holy, the Virgin Mary should have an integral role in our spiritual life; but sometimes, perhaps, you might ​think you cannot relate to the Blessed Mother because she was immaculately conceived and didn’t have to struggle with sin as we do. In this episode, Fr. Mike shares how even though ​Mary ​did not struggle with sin, she still had her own unique struggle that we can relate to when we are seeking holiness. Fr. Mike is also a presenter in these faith formation programs from Ascension: Belonging: Baptism in the Family of God (http://bit.ly/2rdOFy7) Chosen: This is Your Catholic Faith (http://bit.ly/2r32vUK) Altaration: The Mystery of the Mass Revealed (http://bit.ly/2rIYjfE) YOU: Life, Love and the Theology of the Body (http://bit.ly/2nKLug5) Get 18 of Fr. Mike’s best Ascension Presents videos in this exclusive DVD from Ascension: Ascension Presents … Fr. Mike Schmitz (http://bit.ly/2sKUnJN) Fr. Mike spoke at the Ascension Cafe during the World Meeting of Families. Watch him and other speakers get fired up over the gospel in the Ascension Cafe DVD (http://bit.ly/2sYtQaW). MORE FROM ASCENSION: Ascension Press main website: http://ascensionpress.com Ascension Presents website: http://ascensionpresents.com The Great Adventure Blog: http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/blog SOCIAL MEDIA Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AscensionPress/ Twitter: http://twitter.com/AscensionPress LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/asce... Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/ascensionpress/
January 12, 2018
So you felt a strong wave of inspiration and became determined to make a New Year’s resolution. Great. Now what? In this episode, Fr. Mike teaches how to strike a balance between great change and manageable consistency, so you can tackle that resolution with determination and wisdom. By starting with small steps and plotting a course of action, you will experience what it means to be faithful and become who God is calling you to be by the end of the year. Fr. Mike is also a presenter in these faith formation programs from Ascension: Belonging: Baptism in the Family of God (http://bit.ly/2rdOFy7) Chosen: This is Your Catholic Faith (http://bit.ly/2r32vUK) Altaration: The Mystery of the Mass Revealed (http://bit.ly/2rIYjfE) YOU: Life, Love and the Theology of the Body (http://bit.ly/2nKLug5) Get 18 of Fr. Mike’s best Ascension Presents videos in this exclusive DVD from Ascension: Ascension Presents … Fr. Mike Schmitz (http://bit.ly/2sKUnJN) Fr. Mike spoke at the Ascension Cafe during the World Meeting of Families. Watch him and other speakers get fired up over the gospel in the Ascension Cafe DVD (http://bit.ly/2sYtQaW).
January 3, 2018
While many of us may become stressed out before Christmas and depressed afterwards—working hard to make the holiday perfect and burning out once it’s all “over”—the Light of the season can still shine through if we remember one thing. In this episode, Fr. Mike Schmitz explains what it means for Christmas to be a season of hope, and reminds us that strengthening our relationship with Jesus while learning to trust him is the one thing that matters this season. Fr. Mike is also a presenter in these faith formation programs from Ascension: Belonging: Baptism in the Family of God (http://bit.ly/2rdOFy7) Chosen: This is Your Catholic Faith (http://bit.ly/2r32vUK) Altaration: The Mystery of the Mass Revealed (http://bit.ly/2rIYjfE) YOU: Life, Love and the Theology of the Body (http://bit.ly/2nKLug5) Get 18 of Fr. Mike’s best Ascension Presents videos in this exclusive DVD from Ascension: Ascension Presents … Fr. Mike Schmitz (http://bit.ly/2sKUnJN) Fr. Mike spoke at the Ascension Cafe during the World Meeting of Families. Watch him and other speakers get fired up over the gospel in the Ascension Cafe DVD (http://bit.ly/2sYtQaW). MORE FROM ASCENSION: Ascension Press main website: http://ascensionpress.com Ascension Presents website: http://ascensionpresents.com The Great Adventure Blog: http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/blog SOCIAL MEDIA Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AscensionPress/ Twitter: http://twitter.com/AscensionPress LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/asce... Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/ascensionpress/
January 2, 2018
Do you want to learn how to love like the Bible teaches? Bible-based love, indeed any Bible-based relationships, can be attained if we understand what the Bible says about love. Loving someone rightly is difficult because selfish motives often seep into even our closest relationships. In this episode, Fr. Mike Schmitz connects the Old and New Testaments, using the story of the Fall in Genesis to show how, despite our selfish motives, we are still made for love. He shows how the Fall was not a curse from God but a remedy for humanity’s broken idea of love. Because Adam and Eve — and subsequently, each one of us — chose self-preservation over self-gift and wanted pleasure apart from sacrifice, God had to teach us that love costs something. He provided a remedy and a Redeemer so we could learn to be a gift from him to others. Fr. Mike is also a presenter in these faith formation programs from Ascension: Belonging: Baptism in the Family of God (http://bit.ly/2rdOFy7) Chosen: This is Your Catholic Faith (http://bit.ly/2r32vUK) Altaration: The Mystery of the Mass Revealed (http://bit.ly/2rIYjfE) YOU: Life, Love and the Theology of the Body (http://bit.ly/2nKLug5) Get 18 of Fr. Mike’s best Ascension Presents videos in this exclusive DVD from Ascension: Ascension Presents … Fr. Mike Schmitz (http://bit.ly/2sKUnJN) Fr. Mike spoke at the Ascension Cafe during the World Meeting of Families. Watch him and other speakers get fired up over the gospel in the Ascension Cafe DVD (http://bit.ly/2sYtQaW). MORE FROM ASCENSION: Ascension Press main website: http://ascensionpress.com Ascension Presents website: http://ascensionpresents.com The Great Adventure Blog: http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/blog SOCIAL MEDIA Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AscensionPress/ Twitter: http://twitter.com/AscensionPress LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/asce... Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/ascensionpress/
December 13, 2017
It’s all too common for us to think of our work as either the thing that gives us our identity, or something to be avoided at all cost, or some unhealthy combination of those two misleading philosophies. In this episode, Fr. Mike aims to bring inspiration to our everyday jobs by showing us how our labor can be a way to share in God’s nature. By striving to look past humanity’s brokenness and sin, we can move beyond seeing work as a burden, and see how every act of work has dignity. Fr. Mike is also a presenter in these faith formation programs from Ascension: Belonging: Baptism in the Family of God (http://bit.ly/2rdOFy7) Chosen: This is Your Catholic Faith (http://bit.ly/2r32vUK) Altaration: The Mystery of the Mass Revealed (http://bit.ly/2rIYjfE) YOU: Life, Love and the Theology of the Body (http://bit.ly/2nKLug5) Get 18 of Fr. Mike’s best Ascension Presents videos in this exclusive DVD from Ascension: Ascension Presents … Fr. Mike Schmitz (http://bit.ly/2sKUnJN) Fr. Mike spoke at the Ascension Cafe during the World Meeting of Families. Watch him and other speakers get fired up over the gospel in the Ascension Cafe DVD (http://bit.ly/2sYtQaW). MORE FROM ASCENSION: Ascension Press main website: http://ascensionpress.com Ascension Presents website: http://ascensionpresents.com The Great Adventure Blog: http://biblestudyforcatholics.com/blog SOCIAL MEDIA Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AscensionPress/ Twitter: http://twitter.com/AscensionPress LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/asce... Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/ascensionpress/
December 7, 2017
In this episode, Fr. Mike delivers a crackdown on habitual criticism. He discusses how easy it is to criticize something, and how hard it is to create something and open yourself to be critiqued. While pointing out how excessive criticism is a form of cowardice, he invites us to have courage and stand for the Creed while accepting the risk of criticism that comes with doing so.
November 30, 2017
The phrase “dark night of the soul” is thrown around quite a bit in Catholic circles, but what does it mean exactly? In this episode, Fr. Mike Schmitz explains precisely what is happening in our souls when we feel this kind of spiritual darkness, and he encourages us to hang in there when it happens; because it means God is preparing our souls for much greater things.
November 22, 2017
Finding the right words to pray can be difficult, and the rote prayers we were taught as children are too often not prayed from the heart. In this episode, Fr. Mike Schmitz tells us about a way to pray that priests are taught in their formation years which helps make their prayers both habitual and genuine.
November 16, 2017
Death, judgment, heaven, and hell—the four last things—are popular enough topics among Christians; but there’s more to these things than just our own personal end. In this episode​,​ Fr. Mike explains how, as the Catechism teaches, in the Last Judgment “the ultimate meaning of the whole work of creation and of the entire economy of salvation” will be made known to us (CCC 1040). All the good and evil you and I have done will also become known. Fr. Mike’s perspective on this reality is both fascinating and humbling.
Loading earlier episodes...
    15
    15
      0:00:00 / 0:00:00