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The Word on Fire Show

Join Bishop Robert Barron for a weekly podcast on faith and culture. Find more episodes at http://WordOnFireShow.com and submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.com.
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Aug 23, 2016

We are taking the next few episodes of the show to discuss each of the great men and women featured on Word On Fire's epic new film series, Catholicism: The Pivotal Players. The focus of this episode is Saint Thomas Aquinas. Widely considered one of the greatest minds in the history of Western Civilization, Thomas angelically and definitively articulated our Catholic understanding of God in his famous Summa Theologica. Our listener question asks about Thomas' argument of God as the "unmoved mover."

*In this episode we include a limited time Word on Fire Show discount on Catholicism: The Pivotal Players with Coupon Code: DumbOx 

Click on www.PivotalPlayers.com to purchase and act now because this offer expires soon!

Topics Discussed

  • 1:30  - Bishop Barron discusses his meetings with local ministries
  • 2:47 - Who was Saint Thomas Aquinas?
  • 5:16 - Why was Saint Thomas nicknamed Dumb Ox?
  • 6:50 - What can Thomas teach us about who God is?
  • 11:16 - How does a misunderstanding of God form modern atheism?
  • 12:3o - What light does Thomas shed on who we are as humans?
  • 16:25 - What makes Thomas Aquinas a saint?
  • 18:46 - What was the most poignant part of filming Thomas' history?
  • 20:24 - What is the connection between Aquinas and Chesterton?
  • 23:30 - Listener Question: How can God be the "Unmoved Mover"?

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Aug 16, 2016

We are taking the next six episodes of the Word on Fire show to discuss each of the great men and women featured on Word On Fire's epic new film series, Catholicism: The Pivotal Players. The focus of this episode is Saint Francis, the great reformer of the Church from the early 13th century who truly embodied the life of Christ through his radical ministry of mercy and love. Our listener question asks about mysticism in the Church today.

*In this episode we include a limited time Word on Fire Show discount on Catholicism: The Pivotal Players with Coupon Code: Fran1226  

Click on www.PivotalPlayers.com to purchase and act now because this offer expires soon!

Topics Discussed

  • 0:19  - Bishop Barron discusses his trip to Poland for World Youth Day
  • 3:00 - Intro about Pivotal Players and St. Francis in particular
  • 6:23 - Why is Saint Francis so universally revered?
  • 8:18 - What's the most misunderstood element of Francis?
  • 10:17 - How did Saint Francis come to faith?
  • 12:25 - How did the Franciscan order come to fruition?
  • 14:44 - What does it mean that the Pope chose the name Francis?
  • 16:14 - What are some of Bishop Barron's favorite Francis stories?
  • 19:48 - Why is Saint Francis a pivotal player?
  • 21:25 - Listener Question: What does it mean to be a mystic today?

Bonus Resources

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Aug 9, 2016

Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy is by all accounts one of the greatest masterpieces of world literature and an absolute gem of the Catholic tradition. The epic tripartite poem tells the story of our soul's journey toward God. In this episode Bishop Barron offers a virtual commentary on all three parts, guiding listeners through Dante's vision of hell, his seven story mountain of purgatory and his ascension into heaven - the joyful ending which classically defines this poem as a "comedy." Our listener question asks about how and when we should seek a spiritual director.

Topics Discussed

  • 0:22  - Bishop Barron discusses meeting Joseph, the episode host
  • 1:20 - Who was Dante and how has he influenced Bishop Barron?
  • 4:19 - How does the Divine Comedy begin?
  • 6:40 - How does the beginning of the story typical to conversion?
  • 7:28 - What blocks Dante from pursuing his path to God?
  • 8:56 - What is Dante's vision of hell?
  • 11:01 - How does Dante describe Satan?
  • 17:15 - What spiritual moves does Dante make in purgatory?
  • 19:45 - What literary devices and language does Dante uses?
  • 21:17 - How does Dante act against his sin?
  • 25:25 - How does Dante describe Heaven?
  • 29:14 - What should we takeaway by reading this poem?
  • 31:06 - Listener Question: How and when should we find a spiritual director?

Bonus Resources

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Aug 2, 2016

"Beige Catholicism" is a phrase Bishop Barron coined early in his career as a way of describing the Church's lackluster adoption of the post-conciliar movement. Much of Bishop Barron's evangelical work, including his famous Catholicism book and film series, focuses on bringing Christ's radical distinctiveness and the Tradition's beautiful vibrancy back into our understanding of the Church. In this episode Bishop Barron details the problems with beige Catholicism as well as the path to a solution. Finally, a listener asks about the Benedict Option for Catholics struggling to keep the faith alive in contemporary culture.

Topics Discussed

  • 0:17  - Bishop Barron discusses the new Word On Fire office and studio
  • 2:32 - What is beige Catholicism?
  • 4:45 - What is the history of beige Catholicism?
  • 6:48 - What is the problem with accommodating the culture?
  • 9:30 - What does it mean to domesticate Jesus?
  • 11:45 - Why should we see Jesus as "dangerous and strange"?
  • 13:55 - How the hit show Vikings illustrates the strangeness of Christianity
  • 15:33 - What does a full sacramental vision of the church look like?
  • 17:36 - What does a vibrantly colorful Catholicism look like?
  • 19:20 - How has Bishop Barron's work targeted this problem?
  • 20:20 - Question from listener: How about the Benedict Option?

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Jul 26, 2016

How should we go about evangelization? Especially for those of us living in a highly-secularized society, what techniques should we employ and what pitfalls ought we avoid? Bishop Robert Barron shares his advice in Part Two of his popular keynote talk on evangelizing the culture.

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Jul 19, 2016

How should we go about evangelization? Especially for those of us living in a highly-secularized society, what techniques should we employ and what pitfalls ought we avoid? In this episode we get advice from one of the greatest evangelists of the postmodern age, Bishop Robert Barron, as we listen to Part One of his popular keynote talk on evangelizing the culture.

Bonus Resources

 

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron..

Jul 12, 2016

Whenever there's a survey asking Christians, "What's one area in your spiritual life you'd like to improve?",  the answers almost inevitably center around prayer. In today's episode, Bishop Barron explains what precisely prayer is and then offers some simple steps as well as some more advanced techniques to help us all grow in intimacy with God. With this goal in mind, Bishop Barron leads listeners down five different avenues of prayer that range from informal dialogue to the mass itself. Finally, the listener question comes from a seminarian in Phoenix who wonders where Catholics should draw the line when it comes to the teachings of a notable 21st-century Christian writer.

Topics Discussed

  • 0:18  - Bishop Barron discusses his upcoming trip to World Youth Day
  • 4:00 - What is prayer and how does conversational prayer begin?
  • 8:42 - How does God speak to us in prayer?
  • 10:58 - What is "Lectio Divina" and how do we pray it?
  • 14:45 - What are some forms of rote prayers and what is their benefit?
  • 20:40 - What is the Liturgy of The Hours and how do we access it?
  • 24:00 - How is the Liturgy of The Hours a universal prayer?
  • 26:00 - How can enter into the Holy Mass specifically as a prayer?
  • 28:00 - How might we advance through these five forms of prayer?
  • 29:25 -  What does Bishop Barron's holy hour entail?
  • 35:20 - Listener Question: Where should we draw the line with N.T. Wright?

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Jul 5, 2016

Normally, in each episode we take one listener question. But we've received such a large number of outstanding questions from around the globe that we’ve decided to devote this entire episode to answering questions from listeners like you. Bishop Barron answers several questions, rapid fire, on many different topics.

Topicss Discussed

  • 0:24  - Intro: Bishop Barron talks about his recent work and vacation plans
  • 4:17 - How should Catholic school teachers evangelize their pupils?
  • 5:19 - Do Muslims and Christians worship the same God?
  • 9:28 - Has the Church ever changed its doctrine?
  • 13:10 - How does one evangelize the culture and not be corrupted by it?
  • 20:22 - How do we encourage young people to engage in philosophy?
  • 26:00 - What is the difference between faith and belief?
  • 31:30 - What book is Bishop Barron currently reading?

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Jun 28, 2016

Pope Francis recently invited Bishop Barron to speak to hundreds of English-speaking priests at a gathering in Rome for the Jubilee Year of Mercy. In today's episode, Bishop Barron reflects on the talk he shared with his fellow clergymen about Jesus' encounter with the woman at the well. From this account, he distills four major lessons on divine mercy. The listener question comes from a practicing Catholic in London who wonders whether a vigorous spiritual life is necessary if we are ultimately reconciled to God.

Topics Discussed

  • 0:17  - Bishop Barron goes to Rome to talk about divine mercy
  • 3:03 - How is God's mercy relentless?
  • 5:28 - How does the story of the woman at the well dismantle religious mythology?
  • 8:01 - How is God's mercy divinizing?
  • 11:40 - Connections to marriage and the Old Testament
  • 13:14 - What does "God became man that man might become God" actually mean?
  • 16:11 - How is God's mercy demanding?
  • 20:01 - The vibrant paradox of extreme demands, extreme mercy
  • 22:34 - How is God's mercy a summons to mission?
  • 25:30 - The highest life is a summons to Mission
  • 26:42 - Question from listener: Why bother engaging in the spiritual life?

Bonus Resources

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Jun 21, 2016

Bob Dylan is one of the most spiritually interesting songwriters of our generation. In today's episode, Bishop Barron reflects on some of Dylan's best-known hits to show how they subtlety put Biblical themes on display. A listener wonders if Bishop Barron has any tips on how to evangelize in a secular workspace.

Topics Discussed

  • 0:17  - Bishop Barron at the Bob Dylan concert last weekend
  • 2:40 - Can Bob Dylan serve as a gateway to God?
  • 4:45 - Who is Bob Dylan?
  • 8:32 - Why Bob Dylan is best read as a spiritual poet
  • 10:11 - Bob Dylan's religious views
  • 12:17 - Biblical elements of Blowin' in the Wind
  • 15:39 - Bishop Barron on Like a Rolling Stone
  • 21:41 - Bob Dylan and the Resurrection
  • 22:10All Along the Watchtower and the Book of Isaiah
  • 26:41 - Finding Jesus in Dylan's Make You Feel My Love
  • 28:43 - Question from listener: How can we evangelize in a secular workspace?

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Jun 14, 2016

What is Catholic social teaching and what does it have to say about the economy, business, and our everyday work lives? That's what Bishop Barron explains in this episode. Surveying the insights of popes and saints, he shows why the Catholic Church rejects socialism and embraces a nuanced, careful endorsement of the market economy.

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron

Jun 7, 2016

Venerable Fulton Sheen is remembered as one of the greatest Catholic evangelists of the twentieth century. A master of both television and radio, he shared the Gospel with millions using his unique blend of wit, humor, and insight. Bishop Barron reflects on Sheen's legacy and the lessons he offers us. A deacon listener asks how Bishop Barron prepares his own homilies each week.

Topics Discussed

  • 0:56  - Bishop Barron's summary of the New Evangelization Conference in Latrobe, PA
  • 1:45 - Who was Archbishop Fulton Sheen?
  • 4:54 -  One thing we must do before we evangelize
  • 6:42 - The significance of a Catholic priest on primetime, network TV
  • 8:47 -  How Sheen reached 30 million viewers through his TV show
  • 11:02 - Sheen's strategy for evangelizing a broad audience
  • 13:05 - Would Fulton Sheen be on Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram?
  • 14:32 - The importance of Sheen's book, The Mystical Body of Christ
  • 17:29 - The common thread connecting Ronald Knox, G.K. Chesterton, and Fulton Sheen
  • 18:26 - How Sheen's "Holy Hour" grounded all his writing and preaching
  • 20:40 - Sheen's commitment to do a "Holy Hour" every day during his priesthood
  • 22:42 - Bishop Barron's experience giving the "Tre Ore" talks at St. Patrick's Cathedral
  • 24:38 - Question from listener: How does Bishop Barron prepare his homilies?

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron

May 31, 2016

It's been widely hailed as the greatest sermon ever preached and a masterpiece of religious and social ethics. Jesus' Sermon on the Mount, found in Matthew 5-7, commences with the "beatitudes", a series of eight blessings that Jesus gives to those who suffer, mourn, and express purity of heart. Bishop Barron walks through each beatitude and unveils its deeper meaning. A listener asks whether, according to Thomas Aquinas, God loves everyone the same or has a special hatred for sinners.

NOTE: Click here to donate to our new Pivotal Players series and receive your free gifts!

Topics Discussed

  • 0:26  - Bishop Barron's new film series, CATHOLICISM: The Pivotal Players
  • 1:34 - What does "beatitude" mean?
  • 4:35 - How the beatitudes of Jesus are different than other religious teachings
  • 6:25 - How can the "poor in spirit" be blessed?
  • 7:32 - How will those who mourn be comforted?
  • 9:15 - The future promise of comfort for those who mourn
  • 10:06 - What does it mean to be "meek"?
  • 11:21 - How will the meek "inherit the land"?
  • 12:12 -  How God satisfied those who "hunger and thirst for righteousness"
  • 13:49 - What "blessed are the merciful" means
  • 15:09 - How the mercy we express is tied to the mercy we receive
  • 16:55 - How do we become "clean of heart"?
  • 18:39 - Pornography and the "clean of heart"
  • 19:37 - Why peacemakers will become children of God
  • 20:55 - Cardinal George and the eschatological dimension of peacemaking
  • 22:51 - Why religious persecution can be a form of blessing
  • 25:27 - Question from listener: Does God love everyone the same or hate sinners?

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron

May 24, 2016

We all face the Big Questions of life—it doesn't matter whether we're religious or not. We wonder about God, identity, meaning, morals, and death. Bishop Barron tackles some of the Big Questions and compares how the world generally answers them with how the Catholic Church responds. A listener asks about the relationship between God's providence and our free will.

Topics Discussed

  • 0:14  - The power of spiritual fatherhood
  • 2:44 - Father Barron, Bishop Barron, or Grandpa Barron?
  • 2:54 - Question #1 - Does God exist?
  • 6:19 - The big "why?" question
  • 8:40 - Question #2 - Who am I?
  • 12:05 - What about those who reduce all life to "genetic machines"?
  • 13:11 - Question #3 - What is the meaning of life?
  • 17:21 - Do we just make up meaning for ourselves?
  • 18:54 - Question #4 - What is moral?
  • 23:00 - How do we discover what's right and wrong?
  • 26:18 - Question #5 - What happens after death?
  • 30:22 - Bishop Barron's one-sentence answer to each Big Question
  • 31:27 - Question from listener: Where does God's providence end and our free will begin?

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron

May 17, 2016

There's a common tendency to read the opening chapters of Genesis as scientific texts. But is this the best way? Or even the right way? Bishop Barron offers guidance on how to properly understand the Biblical creation story. A listener wonders how we should manage the relationship between Church and state.

Topics Discussed

  • 1:05 - The most surprising part about being a bishop
  • 2:29 - How do people often misread Genesis?
  • 5:01 - Why the Genesis narratives cannot be scientific
  • 6:23 - What genre is Genesis 1-2?
  • 7:43 - The main theological insights in Genesis 1-2
  • 9:41 - How Genesis 1-2 points forward to the non-violence of Jesus
  • 11:29 - The objects of creation are not worshiped
  • 14:39 - Why it's important that the world is created, not divine
  • 16:49 - What it means that man was made in God's "image and likeness"
  • 18:25 - The first man as the first philosopher
  • 20:24 - How the Church Fathers read Genesis
  • 21:58 - What Genesis 1-2 is ultimately trying to teach us
  • 23:16 - Question from listener: how do we balance the relationship between Church and state?

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron

May 10, 2016

As Bishop Barron shows in his new book, Vibrant Paradoxes, Catholicism is both/and, not either/or. It celebrates the union of contraries—grace and nature, faith and reason, Scripture and tradition, body and soul—in a way that the full energy of each opposing element remains in place. In this episode, Bishop Barron explores several examples of this both/and embrace. A listener asks about the difficult passage in Acts 5 involving Ananias and Sapphira.

Topics Discussed

  • 0:22 - Exciting upcoming events for Bishop Barron
  • 2:04 - What does it mean to say Catholicism is "both/and"
  • 5:29 - G.K. Chesterton on red, white, and the Church's healthy hatred of pink
  • 7:42 - Why Catholics "want it all"
  • 8:38 - The extreme demands of sin and mercy
  • 11:25 - Why reason and faith are no mutually exclusive
  • 15:58 - Faith/reason in the realm of science
  • 17:59 - Bruce Jenner and the dichotomy of matter and spirit
  • 21:59 - How discipline leads to real freedom
  • 25:53 - The path from suffering to joy
  • 27:59 - Question from listener: how can we reconcile the loving, non-violent Jesus with the angry God who kills Ananias and Sapphira?

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron

May 3, 2016

Thomas Aquinas not only shaped the Church, but influenced much of Western civilization. Who was this great saint? What are some of his important writings? And how should we begin to read his masterful Summa theologiae? Bishop Barron offers some answers in this week's episode. A bright 14-year-old listener asks about Bertrand Russell's famous criticism of Aquinas, and how to respond.

Topics Discussed

  • 0:27 - Updates from Bishop Barron's life
  • 1:53 - How did Bishop Barron discover Thomas Aquinas?
  • 3:23 -  Who was Thomas Aquinas?
  • 4:45 - Surveying Aquinas' major works
  • 7:42 - Best entry-level books on Thomas Aquinas
  • 10:03 - Aquinas' unique disputatio style
  • 13:07 - How Thomas Aquinas would engage the New Atheists
  • 15:36 - Why is it worth reading Thomas Aquinas?
  • 17:16 - How should we begin reading the Summa theologiae?
  • 19:40 - The landscape and structure of the Summa
  • 21:44 - Why Aquinas is a spiritual master
  • 24:40 - Question from listener: how to respond to Bertrand Russell's crtiqiue of Aquinas?

Bonus Resources

 

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron

Apr 26, 2016

Normally, in each episode we take one listener question. But today, we've devoted the entire episode to questions from listeners like you. Bishop Barron answers several questions, rapid fire, on many different topics.

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Apr 19, 2016

What does God want me to do with my life? And how can I discern God's will for my day-to-day decisions? We all ask these questions and today Bishop Barron offers his advice. A listener also asks how Bishop Barron discerned his own call to the priesthood.

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Apr 12, 2016

How did God use a little-known seminary professor to launch a worldwide evangelization ministry? Bishop Barron shares the story behind his Word on Fire ministry, including the many twists and turns along the way. A Protestant listener who is interested in Catholicism asks for some good book recommendations.

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Apr 5, 2016

During this Easter season, when Christians around the world celebrate the rising of Jesus from the dead, Bishop Barron looks reflects on the evidence for this extraordinary event and what it means for us today. A listener asks, in response to a previous episode, how to teach our kids about God without watering down the faith.

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Mar 29, 2016

Today we discuss a viral video from Bill Nye the Science Guy, a pop-science leader, who wonders whether philosophy can provide any real answers to the questions of life. A listener asks whether Bishop Barron would accept an invitation to appear on HBO's "Real Time" with religious skeptic Bill Maher.

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Mar 22, 2016

Today we're sharing the second part of a talk Bishop Barron recently gave titled "Against the YouTube Heresies." (If you missed the first part, be sure to listen to it first!)

Modeled after St. Irenaeus' classic work from the second century, Against the Heresies, Bishop Barron identifies the most common objections people have to Christianity today, especially on the Internet, and then shows us how to respond. Enjoy!

(Note: You can now pre-order Bishop Barron's newest book, Vibrant Paradoxes: The Both/And of Catholicism. For a limited time, when you pre-order the book, we'll also send you a FREE CD containing reflections from Bishop Barron on the Resurrection. So be sure to pre-order your copy today!)

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Mar 15, 2016

Today we're sharing the first part of a talk Bishop Barron recently gave titled "Against the YouTube Heresies." Modeled after St. Irenaeus' classic work from the second century, Against the Heresies, Bishop Barron identifies the most common objections people have to Christianity today, especially on the Internet, and then shows us how to respond. You'll hear the first half of the talk in this episode, and the second half in the next episode. Enjoy!

(Note: You can now pre-order Bishop Barron's newest book, Vibrant Paradoxes: The Both/And of Catholicism. For a limited time, when you pre-order the book, we'll also send you a FREE CD containing reflections from Bishop Barron on the Resurrection. So be sure to pre-order your copy today!)

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

Mar 8, 2016

This week, Baker Academic released a new hardcover edition of Bishop Barron's book, The Priority of Christ: Toward a Postliberal Catholicism. Bishop Barron discusses the book's main ideas including the problem with liberalism, how Jesus Christ is the proper foundation of knowledge and ethics, and how the saints unveil the good life. A listener asks about Jesus' words from the cross, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"

(Note: For a limited time, get "The Priority of Christ" at a huge discount through Word on Fire by visiting http://WordOnFire.org/priority.)

Find bonus links and resources for this episode at http://WordOnFireShow.com and be sure to submit your questions at http://AskBishopBarron.

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