What is 666 in the Bible?

By Joel Schorn| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Scripture and Theology
Although many people associate 666 with the devil, the Book of Revelation explains what the number really signifies.

What is the prophecy of St. Malachy?

By Joseph McHugh| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Scripture and Theology
Some say Pope Francis’ election signals the end of the world. Is it the vision of a 12th-century saint, or the work of a false prophet?

No sooner did our new pontiff announce his name as Francis than some “prophecy experts” took to the airwaves, claiming that the new pope is “Peter the Roman,” the fulfillment of the “prophecy of St. Malachy” that this will be the final pope and the end of the world.


What is the transfiguration?

By Joel Schorn| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Saints, Feasts, and Seasons Scripture and Theology
A mountaintop encounter with Jesus and his apostles holds valuable lessons for all followers of Christ.

All three synoptic gospels tell the story of the transfiguration of Jesus (Matt. 17:1-13; Mark 9:3-13; Luke 9:28-36)—frequently a sign of the importance of an event from Jesus’ life for the early Christian community. Its origin is debated. Some scholars say the transfiguration episode is really an account of Jesus’ resurrection which was moved to a different part of the gospels. Others think it has its roots in an actual visionary event of some kind.


Can we use real bread at Mass?

By John Switzer| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Prayer and Sacraments Scripture and Theology

A seminary pal of mine once remarked that he had no difficulty believing that Christ is present in holy communion. What he did question was the proposition that it was actually bread being used as a host.

Believe it or not, the hosts we use at Mass qualify as “real bread,” but they aren’t very good bread—at least not in any ordinary, earthly sense of the word. In accordance with one particular tradition of Western Christianity, canon law requires that the bread be unleavened (made without yeast).


Can we use real bread at Mass?

By John Switzer| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Prayer and Sacraments Scripture and Theology

A seminary pal of mine once remarked that he had no difficulty believing that Christ is present in holy communion. What he did question was the proposition that it was actually bread being used as a host.

Believe it or not, the hosts we use at Mass qualify as “real bread,” but they aren’t very good bread—at least not in any ordinary, earthly sense of the word. In accordance with one particular tradition of Western Christianity, canon law requires that the bread be unleavened (made without yeast).


A tribute to the late Father Andrew Greeley

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Article Parish Life Scripture and Theology Social Justice

“It is not surprising,” wrote the editors of U.S. Catholic in the intro to their April 1984 interview with Father Andrew Greeley, that he “is often heard to quote the line from Hilaire Belloc, ‘When I am dead, I hope it may be said, “His sins were scarlet, but his books were read.” ’ ”

Father Greeley died early Thursday morning at his home in Chicago.


What should we make of the other gospels?

By Michael Peppard| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Scripture and Theology

If Catholics know anything at all about the Bible, we know that there are four gospels. But every so often, a newly discovered ancient text hits the headlines, such as the Gospel of Thomas (1945), the Gospel of Judas (2006), or the papyrus fragment last year that included a phrase about Jesus’ “wife.”

What are Catholics supposed to make of texts not included in the canon of the New Testament?

In short, be not afraid. While the fourfold gospel canon holds a mine of inexhaustible spiritual riches, there is also much to be learned from noncanonical sources.


What should we make of the other gospels?

By Michael Peppard| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Scripture and Theology

If Catholics know anything at all about the Bible, we know that there are four gospels. But every so often, a newly discovered ancient text hits the headlines, such as the Gospel of Thomas (1945), the Gospel of Judas (2006), or the papyrus fragment last year that included a phrase about Jesus’ “wife.”

What are Catholics supposed to make of texts not included in the canon of the New Testament?

In short, be not afraid. While the fourfold gospel canon holds a mine of inexhaustible spiritual riches, there is also much to be learned from noncanonical sources.


All sworn out: Lay Catholics shouldn't have to sign loyalty oaths

By Rosemarie Zagarri| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Scripture and Theology Vatican Young Adults

Editors' note: Sounding Board is one person’s take on a many-sided subject and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of U.S. Catholic, its editors, or the Claretians.


All sworn out: Lay Catholics shouldn't have to sign loyalty oaths

By Rosemarie Zagarri| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Article Scripture and Theology Vatican Young Adults

Editors' note: Sounding Board is one person’s take on a many-sided subject and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of U.S. Catholic, its editors, or the Claretians.


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