Archbishop Viganò is at it again. In an interview published today, the former nuncio to the United States claims that all of the problems of the 1960s revolutions have a single cause: Vatican II.

Yes. The Women’s Liberation Movement was Vatican II’s fault. Blame the Gay Rights Movement on us. Vietnam protests? Sexual Revolution? Civil Rights marches? All the Church’s doing.

It’s a bit of a far-fetched argument, even for him, but he is by no means the first person to make such claims. In fact, I hear these sorts of things online so often that I actually filmed a video two weeks ago on this very topic, ready to be released today. Is it a direct response to Viganò? Only if you follow the logic that what comes after was caused by what came before… which I’ll address in the video.

Be sure to watch to the end as I do offer my own take on what has caused the problems in the Church and what we can do to fix them.

Click here to listen

Most movies are underwhelming to me. Remakes. Weak adaptations. Shallow concepts. Cheap CGI. The movie industry realizes that people are far more likely to spend money on what is familiar than what is innovative, and so it often chooses not to take a risk. Let’s just do Rocky 34 instead of coming up with something new!

Arrival is an exception to this trend. One YouTube video essay that I like called it the “response to bad movies” and I can’t agree more. It is unlike most movies you will ever see, captivating and beautiful, challenging the viewer’s expectations by turning the world on it’s side (even the shape and position of the alien space ships, long and upright, undermine our expectations!) The movie messes with time and language to create something that is in one sense overwhelming complex and confusing while watching, and yet elegantly simple at its core. Like the picture of a puzzle, unclear and allusive when just a pile of pieces, it is not until the final piece is put into place that the individual pieces have any meaning… but without those individual pieces, there would be no whole.

If you haven’t seen it yet, I cannot recommend it enough to you. At this point in time, Arrival is my favorite movie. I’ve seen it half-a-dozen times (twice in theatres, in fact) and it never ceases to move me. I get chills even thinking about it now. Because so much of the movie rests on how the movie ends, it might be good to watch it first before listening to the podcast, but that’s up to you. Just know that we hold nothing back in this episode, and spoilers are plentiful!

Do I HAVE to Work?

I hope that all of you had a restful Labor Day (those who were able to take a break from your labors) and are happy to be back at work today. For some, I know, the idea of work and happiness are diametrically opposed, and many would prefer that every day was a day off.

As fun as that would be at first, I’m not so sure many of us would last long before we grew entirely restless. As strange as it sounds, work is actually a good thing that we need. In this week’s video, I discuss the Catholic view of work and why it is so important to our human existence.

For years, I’ve produced the “Catholicism in Focus” series as a way to catechize. I focus on the teachings of the Church and try to get beneath a surface level understanding of faith. My hope is that it has brought many people closer to an adult faith.

But it seems that I have missed a step along the way. Catechesis is great, and necessary, but many people are not ready for a series like that. They haven’t met Jesus, haven’t laid the foundation of faith, have no reason to care about catechesis. They need evangelization.

And so I thought, what if I made a “Catholicism In Focus” style series focused more on the essence of the faith? Not the teachings, per se, but the reason for the teachings, the faith. For me, there are questions that every Christian should be able to answer, questions upon everything rests, that I think go untested. Can people actually explain Christianity to another? Can they give a testimony of faith? Can they share the kerygma?

In this series, simply called “Kerygma,” I hope to explore these sorts of questions and to offer easily attainable and shareable answers. But as I say in this first video, my goal is not so much to give the answer for people to memorize as it is to get people thinking for themselves how they would answer. If put on the spot, how would you answer?

In this first video, I begin with the question of Christianity in general. What is it at its core?