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Book Review: The Beer Option

I have to be honest, there’s something so empty to me in big, grand Catholic evangelical efforts. You know the type – “transforming your family with 3 easy things;” “an evening workshop that will change your marriage forever.”  The more dynamic it claims to be, and the grander the promise of impacting the entire society, the less I think it will...

Avarice: The Secret Sin that Owns Us

Pope Benedict XVI said that the saints are the best apologetics.  Their lives are a clear and manifest proof of God’s love and action in the human heart, and we know this is so because, though our heart is too little examined, we know the human condition well enough to know its corruption.  Seeing the saints is to see a...

An October Farm Retreat With Your Son

We started farming for the sake of my family, especially my sons.  When we had our second son my wife asked, “Where do you see us in 5 years?” North Carolina in the Fall “On a farm,” I answered, “back home.”   “Home” was North Carolina (we were living in Denver, CO), but the “farm” part we had not figured...

The Fact of Food: Eating as the Basis of Culture

Something has gone wrong with our culture, or at least it seems that way by how many people make a living criticizing it, trying to fix it, or checking out of it altogether.  That last one is impossible, but it makes a good story.  Just consider how many institutes, apostolates, and publications say they are doing some sort of “cultural”...

Wholeness, Happiness, and the Difference Between Knowledge and Wisdom

A friend recently remarked that it’s those that gather and control data that own the future.  I understand what he meant (I think), but, if we dig a bit, I suspect we would doubt that the data-controllers of the day, however intelligent they are, have what we would call wisdom. Education today is ordered toward participation in the global economy. ...

The Paradox of Francis: When We Need Fathers, We Get the Law

In a business class in high school I recall studying how factories try to figure out how to squeeze productivity out of workers.  In one case they took a group of women apart from the rest, gave them a specific widget-making task, and then had them do it over and over again with different work schedules.  They tried all kinds...

The Hero Always Comes Home

We should be reluctant to divide things that are not divided.  Or, if we are to divide things, we do so in a way that allows for them to be reunited so as to be more fruitful.  God, for example, “divides” Eve from the side of Adam, but then brings them together into beautiful fruitfulness.  This is the pattern of...

Ite! The Necessity of Discipline

This post is part of a series. I hated discipline in high school.  I did not like to do homework.  I did not like to get up early.  It seemed like the only reason to be disciplined was to get good grades, then get into a good college, then get a good job, then get a lot of money, then...

Ite! Go Forth With Friends

This post is part of a series. One of the times Jesus says “Go!” is pretty scary.  In the Gospel of Luke He sends His disciples on a preaching mission saying, “Go your way; behold I send you out as lambs among wolves” (Luke 10:3).  I live on a little farm and I can tell you that when a canine...

Ite! The Call to Go Forth in Christ

Today, I begin a series geared especially toward young men that have experienced a renewed commitment to Christ or a recent conversion.  The series is titled Ite, is Latin for “go”.   I once taught my three-year-old son to climb up on the lower branches of a cedar tree.  I left for a while and when I came back he had...

Boredom, Sloth, and the Need for Fathers

The following is a chapter from a forthcoming book on fatherhood and mentoring by Jason Craig. “My father, in all his teaching,” said John Stuart Mill, “demanded of me not only the utmost that I could do, but much that I could by no possibility could have done.” Fatherhood fully realized communicates meaning, purpose, and the call to greatness. Without...