Ask Father/Bishop

How can I learn to forgive myself?

Q: There is a sin that I committed long ago for which I have never fully forgiven myself, even though I’ve confessed it several times to a priest in the sacrament of reconciliation. Even though I know God has forgiven me, how can I learn to forgive myself?

How can I encourage my children to consider a religious vocation?

Q: I am a mother of three young children, two boys and one girl. Both my husband and I would feel incredibly blessed if they all had vocations to the religious life. I pray for this intention, but what else can we do to encourage our children to consider religious…

In this Jubilee of Mercy, what about God’s justice?

Q: I have a question regarding the relationship between God’s mercy and justice. While I am excited that we are celebrating a Jubilee of Mercy, I have a concern. Aren’t we forgetting about or diminishing the importance of justice in God’s relationship with us?

Why do priests kiss the altar at Mass?

Q: I have a question that I have been meaning to ask for some time. At the beginning and end of Mass I’ve noticed for years that the priest kisses the altar. Why does he do that? Is it a simple act of reverence or is there another reason?

Why do we pray for the souls in purgatory?

Q: I am a recent convert to Catholicism from an evangelical Protestant background, and I am having a difficult time with the Catholic doctrine of purgatory! More specifically, I am struggling with why we pray for those who are in purgatory in the first place. If they will get to…

Should lectors preach on the readings during Mass?

Q: My family and I were on vacation last summer and attended Sunday Mass at another parish. At one point, the lector came up to the ambo and proceeded to “break open God’s word,” giving a lengthy teaching about the weekend’s readings. Isn’t this the role of the priest or…