IP#277 Steve Weidenkopf – The Glory of the Crusades on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

How can the Crusades be considered “glorious”?  That was the first question that popped up in my mind when I saw “The Glory of the Crusades” come across my desk.   Steve-WeidenkopfAs I found myself caught up in the history unfolding inside the pages of this incredible book, I found that author Steve Weidenkopf approached this subject in an incredibly balanced, engaging and thoughtful way.  By far one of the best books I have ever read on the subject.  Steve is a lecturer of Church History at the Notre Dame Graduate School of Christendom College and the creator and author of Epic: A Journey through Church History, an adult faith-formation program on the 2,000-year history of the Church.  Meticulous researched (just check out the end notes), with little hint of any political agenda, Steve lets history stand on its own solid clear footing.  Thank you Catholic Answers for this outstanding book!

The-Glory-of-the-CrusadesYou can find the book here

The Glory of the Crusades is valuable not only as history but also as a scholarly debunking of centuries of Protestant and Enlightenment distortion of the facts about the West s struggles against militant Islam. –Rev. C. John McCloskey Research fellow, Faith and Reason Institute

This excellent book employs decades of scholarly research to show average readers what medieval historians have long known that popular culture s image of the Crusades has nothing at all to do with the events themselves. Catholics who cringe at the mention of the Crusades will find in this work a surprising and inspiring story of faith. –Thomas F. Madden Director, Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, Saint Louis University

IP#45 – John Salza – The Biblical Basis for Purgatory on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

I love talking with John Salza…tough doctrine and dogma that for most of us is difficult to explain, is just so easy for John.  And he shares his knowledge with all of us…what a gift!

John’s website is www.scripturecatholic.com

Check out John’s book here

From the book description:

In The Biblical Basis for Purgatory,  John  offers the definitive scriptural explanation of this distinctively Catholic doctrine. Building on the teachings of Christ and St. Paul, he shows how the existence of a place of temporal punishment after death is not only a logical extension of what we know about the reality of sin and God’s justice, but is also a supreme expression of God’s love and mercy. Although Purgatory is a place of mercy, its pains are real, and they are severe. This book does more than defend and explain Purgatory it provides a solid plan, drawn from the Church s perennial wisdom for conquering our sins by God s grace, while still on earth.

Faith Check 29 – Temporal Consequences for Sin

Temporal Consequences for Sin

Common sense tells us that our sins have consequences.  If after committing a sin, we confess, then God promises to forgive us.  Yet there can still remain what the Church calls a “temporal punishment,” or consequence, for our sin.

For instance, in 2 Samuel 12 after David confesses his sin of adultery, the prophet Nathaniel tells him that the Lord has forgiven him, but nevertheless he will suffer the death of his child as a consequence of his sin.1  Our relationship with God is a personal one and our sins are not just rule violations, but personal offenses that need to be mended.

We can fulfill the temporal punishments for our sins through sincere sorrow for our sins, prayers, sacrifices, and acts of charity.

But as part of the Body of Christ, we can also assist in coming to the aid of our brothers and sisters, both living and dead.  This is the basic principle of the Church’s practice of indulgences, and undoubtedly what St. Paul has in mind in Colossians 1:24 where he says, “I rejoice in my sufferings, and complete what is lacking in Christ’s affliction for the sake of his body, the Church.”  Or perhaps it’s put best in 1 Peter 4:8, which simply states, “love covers a multitude of sins.”

1 –  2 Sam. 12:13-14

IP#263 Trent Horn – Answering Atheism on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

“Answering Atheism: How to Make the Case for God with Logic and Charity” is a compassionately engaging and Trent-Hornintellectually-savvy response to the attacks on the existence of God.  Trent Horn is a welcomed fresh voice in the forum of Catholic apologetics.  Well-researched and thoughtfully presented, this book is a must have for all who wish to defend the faith, but it’s also for those who wish to know and grow in it as well.  In our conversation, we touch on many of the enter points for dialogue which we encounter everyday in discussions with family, friends, co-workers, and how to approach those times of engagement in a Christ-like manner.  A highly recommended book by Trent and, his publisher, the good folks at “Catholic Answers”.



You can find the book here

Answering Atheism gets high grades on the three R’s: It is readable, reasonable, and researched. Its defense of the cosmological argument has depth and detail, yet it is not so technical that you need to take a philosophy course to comprehend it. —Peter Kreeft, professor of philosophy, Boston College

I’ve read many works of popular apologetics; this is the best! –Stephen Bullivant, editor, The Oxford Handbook of Atheism

Faith Check 26 – Sacramentals with Greg Youell

Faith Check/Greg Youell
Faith Check/Greg Youell


In the minds of non-Catholics, Catholicism often conjures images of Catholic stuff: candles, crucifixes, rosaries, statues, holy water, oils,
and the like.  These are called sacramentals—not to be confused with the seven sacraments, they are material items that the Lord uses as conduits of his blessing.
Because of our belief in sacramentals, Catholics have sometimes been accused of practicing magic.  But magic is the pagan or new age belief that an object has power in and of itself.  Sacramentals are the Christian belief that the living and true God uses His creation as instruments of grace and healing.

Sacramentals appear all throughout the Scriptures.  James speaks of anointing with oil.1 Acts of the Apostles tells us that Paul’s handkerchiefs brought healing power to those they touched.2In the Old Testament, Elisha’s bones were used to bring a dead man back to life.3

And of course the Gospels portray Our Lord himself often using water, mud or even his own spit to perform mighty works of healing and cleansing, a power which Jesus passed on to his priests to be continued to this day.4  Sacramentals are neither magic nor make believe, but powerful weapons to be utilized in our spiritual journeys.

1 –  Js. 5:14

2 –  Acts 19:11-12

3 –  2 Kgs. 13:21

4 –  cf. Mt. 10:7-8; Lk. 10:18-20; Jn. 20:21-23, etc.

RC#3 – The Case for Christianity – The Resilient Church w/ Mike Aquilina – Discerning Hearts

Episode 3 – The Case for Christianitymikeaquilina

The Resilient Church with Mike Aquilina, offers a fascinating look at the trials and triumphs of the Catholic Church over the past two thousand years. Fast-paced sketches of critical periods in church history give readers perspective on the challenges faced by the church today. Mike Aquilina does not shrink from the realities of the past, including badly behaved leaders and those who betrayed the Lord. Yet he also leaves us all with well-founded hope for the future: God remains faithful in every circumstance and fulfills his promise to remain with his church always.


Resilient-Church-1Pick up a copy of Mke’s book. You’ll find so much more and invaluable references and resoources, as well

Also visit Mike’s “Discerning Hearts” page for more audio downloads and information!

IP#256 Dr. Scott Hahn – Evangelizing Catholics on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

Dr.-Scott-Hahn-1-What a delight to once again speak with Dr. Scott Hahn, especially about his exceptionally important book  Evangelizing Catholics: A Mission Manual for the New Evangelization”. Who should have this book? Everyone!  Just the right mix for the adult Catholic to digest: part history book, part theology book, steeped in Scared Scripture, a sacramental feast,  anointed by the Holy Spirit…this work is just what the Church needs at this time.  If I had my way, every Catholic community would be passing out this book after mass even more eagerly than it does it’s parish bulletin! HIGHLY ENCOURAGED READING!

  Evangelizing-CatholicsYou can find the book here

You can’t keep the faith unless you give it away. That’s a fact. To be a Christian is to be an evangelizer. When the Catholic Church calls us to a “New Evangelization,” that’s  simply a reminder to us of what has always been true. The good news is: you can do it – you can evangelize – and Scott Hahn shows you how. In this this very practical “mission manual” Dr. Hahn equips you with: A guide to understanding what the New Evangelization is, and who it’s really for A roadmap that leads you to where it all happens (hint: it’s closer than you think) A simple, beautiful message to share – in words and actions You don’t need esoteric knowledge. You don’t need to master a new set of skills. Evangelization, for Catholics, is simply friendship raised up to the highest level. Enter a deeper friendship with Christ, and you’ll want to share his companionship more and more with a wider circle of friends.

IP#247 Devin Rose – The Protestant’s Dilemma on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

Devin-RoseIn “The Protestant’s Dilemma: How the Reformation’s Shocking Consequences Point to the Truth of Catholicism”, author/apologist Devin Rose carefully reflects on various Protestant claims and carries them to their logical conclusion.  By incorporating, at times, his own intellectual journey from Protestantism to Catholicism, he simply presents a strong case for the authority of Catholic Church teaching.  The format of the book is excellent for apologetic study. Addressing the basics of the faith, as well as the particulars of Catholic Social Teaching, he gently, but meticulously offers a sound manual of instruction that should be in the library of every one of us called to the “New Evangelization”.


You can find the book here

From the book description:

What if Protestantism were true? What if the Reformers really were heroes, the Bible the sole rule of faith, and Christ s Church just an invisible collection of loosely united believers? As an Evangelical, Devin Rose used to believe all of it. Then one day the nagging questions began. He noticed things about Protestant belief and practice that didn t add up. He began following the logic of Protestant claims to places he never expected it to go -leading to conclusions no Christians would ever admit to holding. In The Protestant s Dilemma, Rose examines over thirty of those conclusions, showing with solid evidence, compelling reason, and gentle humor how the major tenets of Protestantism – if honestly pursued to their furthest extent – wind up in dead ends. The only escape? Catholic truth. Rose patiently unpacks each instance, and shows how Catholicism solves the Protestant s dilemma through the witness of Scripture, Christian history, and the authority with which Christ himself undeniably vested his Church. The Protestant s Dilemma is the perfect book for non-Catholics trying to work through their own nagging doubts, or for Catholics looking for a fresh way to deepen their understanding of the Faith

IP#243 Terry Barber – How to Share Your Faith with Anyone on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

Terry Barber is a pioneer in the New Evangelization.  He is the founder of SaintTerry-Barber Joseph Communications, Inc., Lighthouse Catholic Media and is a co-host for Reasons for Faith Live with Jesse Romero on EWTN Radio Network. His book, “How to Share Your Faith with Anyone: A Practical Manual of Catholic Evangelization”, is an ideal resource for anyone who desires to share the Good News and become an effective evangelist for Christ.  Immensely practical, Terry’s work is an important addition to the apologetic lexicon.  Our conversation was a joy for me to be a part of.  It’s easy to see why Terry Barber is so great at what he does; his joy, found in his faith, is infectious and grace-filled.


You can find the book here

“Before it was fashionable to talk about the New Evangelization, Terry Barber was already doing it. His book is a practical manual written from decades in the trenches. After laying the foundation for what evangelism is and why Catholics need to evangelize, the veteran evangelist gives practical training and application to the troops. Soldiers of Christ, grab this book, arise and share your faith!” —Steve Ray. Host, The Footprints of God film series

“Terry Barber has long been one of the Church’s finest evangelists. His excellent book shows us how the new evangelization requires new apologetics – a new way to explain why the Church’s teachings are true and why Jesus is the answer to the deep desires of the human heart.” —Most Reverend Jose Gomez, Archbishop of Los Angeles

IP#226 Al Kresta – Dangers to the Faith on Inside the Pages part 2

Here is part 2 of our discussion:

With a pastor’s heart and eagle-eye accuracy,  the gifted Al Kresta addresses “Dangers to the Faith: Recognizing Catholicism’s 21st Century Al-KrestaOpponents” in his newest book published by Our Sunday Visitor.     The secular world has presented many twisted versions of the “Truth” over the years: from New Age thought to Isalm,  Scientism to Consumerism, Oprah and Shirley to Bart Erhman and Carl Sagan.  Al Kresta challenges the “opponents” of faith with Christ-like love and wisdom.  In the process, he teaches us all how to evangelize as a true disciple of Christ.  A must have work for all those who may have a seeking heart and a desire to grow in their faith and to share it with family, friends and all they may encounter. One of the best books offered in this Year of Faith….a modern classic that should be in every Catholic home!

Here is part 2 of our discussion:

Dangers-to-the-FaithYou can find the book here

Be sure to listen to “Kresta in the Afternoon” on the Ave Maria Radio Network

From the description:

Dangers to the Faith: Recognizing Catholicism’s 21st Century Opponents is the perfect springboard for discussing the new world in which the Catholic Church exists today. Learn how to better carry out the missionary mandate of the Church. The question isn’t whether you will be a witness to Christ, but whether you will be a faithful witness.