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The Word on Fire Show - Catholic Faith and Culture

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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The Word on Fire Show - Catholic Faith and Culture
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Now displaying: 2022
Dec 31, 2022

Friends, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, the 265th pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church, has passed away at the age of 95 years old.

In this special “Word on Fire Show” discussion, Brandon Vogt and I reflect on his life, impact, and key ideas and contributions.

We specifically touch on five key areas:

1) True reform vs. false reform in the Church

2) Liturgical renewal

3) Importance of the Bible for theology

4) Synthesis of faith and reason

5) Christocentrism


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Dec 26, 2022

Friends, when society dismisses the natural law tradition, is it any wonder we see voluntarism take its place? I recently spoke with Ben Shapiro on his Daily Wire show about natural law, family, happiness and much more.


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Dec 19, 2022

Friends, many people in the Church, including the Holy Father, have been talking about “synodality.” But what is it? What does it mean? How can it help the Church, and what are possible dangers? That’s what Brandon Vogt and I discuss on today’s episode of “The Word on Fire Show.”

A listener asks, what is appropriate to bring with you into Eucharistic Adoration?

Dec 12, 2022

Friends, today we share Fr. Mike Schmitz’s keynote talk from the recent Good News Conference in Orlando, Florida.

As Fr. Mike explains, joy is a choice, just like love. We can either chase the feeling or choose the reality. Joy comes from the fact that you know that God is here and that you are known and loved by him. The Christian life is a pursuit of the One who loved us first, the One in whom we find our true joy.

Dec 5, 2022

Friends, why is art important? An uptick in vandalism against famous pieces of art, calling to mind outbreaks of iconoclasm throughout history, has raised questions about art’s value and purpose.

On today’s “Word on Fire Show,” I discuss with Brandon Vogt why art matters.

A listener asks, is God’s true nature love or truth? What’s the interplay between those two?


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Nov 28, 2022

Friends, today we share Bishop Barron’s 2022 Commencement Address at Benedictine College, which he offered on May 14, 2022.

Well aware that he was on Benedictine ground, a place filled with the mind and spirit of St. Benedict, Bishop Barron shared some simple rules of life that flow from the heart of that great saint.

Nov 21, 2022

Friends, in many parts of the world the Catholic Church is shrinking. Parishes are closing or merging, pastors are devising strategies of consolidation. But for the Church to flourish, we can’t just manage decline. We need strategies for growth. That’s what Brandon Vogt and I discuss on today’s “The Word on Fire Show.”

A listener asks, why should Catholics be pro-life?


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Nov 14, 2022

A new Word on Fire book titled With All Her Mind: A Call to the Intellectual Life features essays by Catholic women who offer a call to pursue what is too often excluded from our picture of femininity: the intellectual life.

Full of practical advice and personal testimonies, and featuring a foreword by celebrated scholar Tracey Rowland, this collection opens readers to the endlessly unique ways for a woman to follow the first and greatest commandment: to love the Lord with all her soul, with all her heart, and with all her mind.

Today we share an interview with the editor of the book, Rachel Bulman, conducted by Haley Stewart, Editing Manager of Word on Fire Spark.


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Nov 7, 2022

Friends, what is the role of religion in civic life? Must we bracket religion from the political sphere? Those are pressing questions as we near the midterm elections. On today’s “Word on Fire Show,” Brandon Vogt and I discuss the relationship between politics and religion and the proper place of tolerance.

A listener asks, do you have any recommendations for explaining the Eucharist to high schoolers?


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Oct 31, 2022

Friends, today we share a recent discussion between Bishop Barron and the theologian Larry Chapp about Vatican II. The conversation ranges over several topics, including:

  • Why evangelize?
  • Deification through the Cross
  • The 20th-century Biblical Renewal and the Liturgical Renewal
  • Evangelization and the Use of Beauty
  • Revival of Catholic Art

If you missed the “Bishop Barron Presents” discussion with Larry Chapp, you can listen to that in episode #299 of this podcast.


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Oct 24, 2022

Friends, Tertullian famously asked in the third century, “What has Athens to do with Jerusalem?” What does philosophy have to do with theology, or reason with faith?

However, on today’s “Word on Fire Show,” Brandon Vogt and I discuss a provocative new article that wonders what Athens and Jerusalem have to do with Silicon Valley. How should we understand the intersection of reason, faith, and technology?

A listener asks, how do you feel about neuroscience, and how does it fit in with your understanding of the soul?

Oct 17, 2022

Friends, today we share Lesson 1 from our new Word on Fire Institute course titled “Evangelizing Protestants.” The course is taught by Andrew Petiprin, the Venerable Fulton J. Sheen Fellow of Popular Culture at the Word on Fire Institute, also a former Episcopal priest who converted to Catholicism.

Andrew takes you inside several important texts that express how the Church thinks about Protestants and explain how they belong with us in the Catholic Church. You’ll look at works by St. John Henry Newman, Pope Pius IX, the Second Vatican Council, and Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI.

In this first lesson of the course, Andrew shares a little about his personal journey and encourages Catholics to support any Protestant friends or family members who may be discerning coming into full communion with the Catholic Church. He also draws on the particular experience of St. John Henry Newman. Andrew sees Newman as a role model for all our Protestant brothers and sisters who are considering making this step.

To watch the other lessons in this course, sign up for the Word on Fire Institute today!

Oct 10, 2022

Friends, what is a Holy Hour? How do you do it, and why should you start? On today’s episode of the “Word on Fire Show,” Brandon Vogt and I discuss one of the most powerful spiritual disciplines you can adopt.

A listener asks, if the Eucharist is so important, why isn’t it mentioned in the Nicene Creed?


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Oct 3, 2022

Friends, today we share a conversation I had with leaders at Biola University on proclaiming and encountering Christ. It was wonderful to sit down with our Protestant brothers and sisters to discuss the importance of evangelization in today’s culture.

In this discussion, we explore how to evangelize through the new media, reach the disaffiliated, prepare to become an evangelist, and much more.

Sep 26, 2022

Friends, on today’s episode of the “Word on Fire Show,” Brandon Vogt and I discuss some comments recently made by Elon Musk, founder of Tesla and SpaceX, about space and religion.

What does Catholicism have to say about the universe and the possibility of alien life? Should we be curious about the cosmos? And what opportunities might space exploration introduce to Catholic evangelists?

A listener asks, given recent research on anti-aging, is aging a disease?


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Sep 19, 2022

Friends, today we share a talk I recently gave to the service men and women at the United State Air Force Academy. After previously speaking at the Naval Academy about three sailors from the Bible, then at West Point about three soldiers from the Old Testament, I wondered, what should I speak of to the Air Force Academy?

What came to me was the angels, those famous fliers in the pages of the Bible. I told the Air Force men and women that they are flyers, too, and so they should consider the angelic realm, the realm of pure spirits, those who fly into the very presence of God, becoming radiant by contact with him. I encouraged them to join the angels in flight, trust their life to a higher power, and become a person of right praise.


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Sep 12, 2022

Friends, on today’s episode of the “Word on Fire Show,” Brandon Vogt and I recap two recent discussions I shared with Lex Fridman and Shia LaBeouf. With over two million views combined, these discussions struck a chord with people and I think they reveal several lessons for Catholics interested in drawing others closer to God.

A listener asks, how do you get so many things done?

Sep 5, 2022

Friends, today we share my recent “Bishop Barron Presents” discussion with Shia LeBeouf. Shia is an actor famous for his roles in TransformersHoney Boy, and Peanut Butter Falcon, among other films. His most recent role is as the young Padre Pio in a new biopic on the great saint, a role which changed his life as he explains in this discussion. His story of conversion is profound and I think you will find it deeply moving.


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Aug 29, 2022

Friends, today on the “Word on Fire Show,” we conclude our series of discussions called “Understanding the Present Moment.” Brandon Vogt and I have examined four massively influential figures who together help explain our present moment, how we arrived at where we are today.

The ideologies undergirding much of the unrest in our culture stem from these four thinkers: Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Michel Foucault. Once we understand these figures and their key ideas, we will recognize them everywhere and be prepared to engage today’s challenges.

In today’s fourth and final discussion, we focus on Michel Foucault, perhaps the least known of the four but maybe the one with the greatest direct impact on the way many in our culture think today.

A listener asks, how do we understand God as bring if he’s both Father and Son?


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Aug 22, 2022

In this new “Bishop Barron Presents” discussion, Bishop Barron sits down with bestselling author Luke Burgis to discuss his new book, Wanting: The Power of Mimetic Desire in Everyday Life.

Why do we want what we want? And how do our desires shape us as people? How are desires related to freedom?

In their conversation, Bishop Barron and Burgis discuss these topics and more, such as:

  • René Girard
  • Mimetic desire
  • Social media
  • The scapegoat mechanism

NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Aug 15, 2022

Friends, today on the “Word on Fire Show,” we continue our series of discussions called “Understanding the Present Moment.” Brandon Vogt and I are examining four massively influential figures who together help explain our present moment, how we arrived at where we are today.

The ideologies undergirding much of the unrest in our culture stem from these four thinkers: Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Michel Foucault. Once we understand these figures and their key ideas, we will recognize them everywhere and be prepared to engage today’s challenges.

In today’s third discussion, we focus on Jean-Paul Sartre.

A listener asks, how does someone be selfless and yet love himself?


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Aug 8, 2022

Friends, today we share the homily I gave for my installation Mass at the Co-Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in Rochester, Minnesota. Celebrating the Feast of Sts. Mary, Martha, and Lazarus, I correlated those three disciples to what Pope Benedict XVI identified as the three tasks of the Church: worship, service of the poor, and evangelization.

Aug 1, 2022

Friends, today on the “Word on Fire Show,” we continue our series of discussions called “Understanding the Present Moment.” Brandon Vogt and I are examining four massively influential figures who together help explain our present moment, how we arrived at where we are today.

The ideologies undergirding much of the unrest in our culture stem from these four thinkers: Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Michel Foucault. Once we understand these figures and their key ideas, we will recognize them everywhere and be prepared to engage today’s challenges.

In today’s second discussion, we focus on Friedrich Nietzsche.

A listener asks, what’s the difference between the theological virtues of faith and hope?


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Jul 25, 2022

Today we share the second half (listen to the first half here) of Bishop Barron’s presentation titled “Breaking Through the Buffered Self,” which he offered for the prestigious 2022 Albert Cardinal Meyer Lecture series hosted at Mundelein Seminary back in March 2022.

In the talk, Bishop Barron looks at the intellectual matrix that has made the army of the disaffiliated possible, namely, what Charles Taylor calls the culture of the “buffered self,” the ego cut off from any living contact with the transcendent. Then, using the three great transcendentals—the good, the true, and the beautiful—as his framework, he proposes ways to break through the buffered self and to open the restless heart to a consideration of God and the things of God.


NOTE: Do you like this podcast? Become a patron and get some great perks for helping, like free books, bonus content, and more. Word on Fire is a non-profit ministry that depends on the support of our listeners…like you! So be part of this mission, and join us today!

Jul 18, 2022

Friends, as you may have heard, Pope Francis recently appointed me the ninth bishop of the Diocese of Winona-Rochester (Minnesota). I will be formally installed on July 29. 

On today's episode of “The Word on Fire Show,” Brandon Vogt and I discuss how I found out, how the process works, how it will affect Word on Fire, and what I'm looking forward to most in my new diocese.

A listener asks, what is it like to act in persona Christi from a physical and emotional perspective?

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