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New Catholics Need Our Friendship and Example

by David Oatney on April 14, 2014

deerwaterThose of you who celebrated Morning Lauds this morning sang or chanted the 42nd Psalm as the first chant, a psalm which has opening words in verses one and two that may be familiar to many Catholics, and certainly set me in a Holy Week mindset. The Grail translation, which is generally what is used in the English-speaking world for the psalter in the Liturgy of the Hours, renders Psalm 42:1-2 in this way:

  Like the deer that yearns for running streams, so my soul is yearning for you, my God.

My soul is thirsting for God, the God of my life; when can I enter and see the face of God? [click to continue reading…]


Remember the Home-bound This Holy Week

by David Oatney on April 13, 2014

hands.-BibleI have a special place in my heart for those who are home-bound. Part of the reason for this, of course, is that I have a disability myself and I don’t drive, so I can identify on a very personal level with many of those who are confined to their home. I am fortunate to have a wife and many friends from our parish, diaconate formation, and local community who are kind to make sure that I don’t stay confined and that I remain active in church and community affairs. In addition, I am still quite physically capable of going places nearby, and I do so. However, lots of disabled people, especially older people with disabilities aren’t so fortunate. One of the things many of them miss the most is the ability to be active in church. For Catholics who might be in this situation, many of them may miss the ability to participate fully in Holy Week. [click to continue reading…]


Catholics, Sacred Scripture, and Tradition

by David Oatney on April 11, 2014

douay1We hear much talk, and rightly so, of the idea of the need to evangelize, and of the “New Evangelization,” the need to re-evangelize in many cases. In our part of the United States, evangelization can also mean reaching out with the right kind of spirit to many of our evangelical Protestant brothers and sisters. This doesn’t mean that we should engage in foolhardy tit for tats, because no one “wins” in that way, it only creates adversaries. Instead, Catholics need to know how to respond to the well-meaning questions that many of them will get. Chief among these questions are variations on “why do Catholics believe things/do things that aren’t in the Bible.” The first thing that has to be understood is that when people ask this question, many of them subscribe to a kind of Christianity or Christian experience that says that the Bible alone is their sole rule of faith and practice. This is called sola scriptura, and it has its roots in the Protestant Reformation. One place you won’t find this doctrine articulated is…in the Bible. It isn’t in there because if the apostles of the Lord and the early Fathers of the Church who either wrote or compiled the New Testament as we have it had held to a standard of sola scriptura, we wouldn’t have a New Testament at all. [click to continue reading…]


Pope Francis

Pope Francis Again Shows Us the Way

by David Oatney March 30, 2014

Both Catholic and secular media are absolutely rife with the reports that Pope Francis “broke with tradition” last week and went to confession himself in a way that the attendees at the penance service could clearly see that he was going to confession. Everyone seems to be utterly agog at the idea that the Holy […]

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Diocese of Knoxville

Slaves for Christ

by David Oatney March 19, 2014

As we continue our series on vocations in the Church at Life At 25, today we’ve come to a vocation that has touched my life in a personal way because I have been called to formation into that vocation, and that reality has played a roll in why I write entries on this diocesan blog. Among […]

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The Hands That Bring Us Jesus

by David Oatney March 11, 2014

As we continue our examination here at Life At 25 of vocations in the Church today, it is right that our attention should now turn to the Sacred Priesthood, because priests are absolutely vital to the mission of the Church, so much so that without priests there is no Eucharist, there is no Holy Sacrifice of the […]

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A Reflection for Ash Wednesday and Lent

by David Oatney March 5, 2014

Today is Ash Wednesday. Most observant Catholics know that today is a day of fast and abstinence in the Universal Church, that means that we are to abstain from flesh meat today, and according to the present norms of the Church, our fast is to mean that we are allowed up to three small meals […]

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The Religious Life

by David Oatney February 27, 2014

Religious life, or the consecrated life, as it is sometimes referred to, in the Catholic Church often attracts many and varied stereotypes within society. A great many of those stereotypes come from Hollywood and, it must be admitted here, that not all of those portrayals put people who live out the religious life in a […]

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Celibacy and Chastity

by David Oatney February 22, 2014

If you’ve been reading Life At 25 over the last few days, you know that we’ve begun a new series on the vocational life of the Church and what someone’s place might be in that vocational life, and you probably know that our previous two posts have been all about the sacrament of Matrimony. There is […]

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