IP#165 Fr. Joseph Fessio S.J. – The Language of the Liturgy on Inside the Pages

Fr. Joseph Fessio S.J. has such an incredible depth of knowledge and experience, that it is gift to discuss any topic with him, but it is especially wonderful to reflect with him on “the language of the liturgy.”  In this episode we discuss 2 books published by Ignatius Press, “Benedict XVI’s Reform” by Msgr. Nicola Bux and “The Voice of the Church at Prayer” by Fr. Uwe Michael Lang.  We discuss the primacy of place the Sacred Liturgy holds in our lives and the importance of offering it worthily.  Fr. Fessio helps us to understand the history of the reform, especially in its expression through our language.  We also discuss  the importance of elevating our understanding and action as opposed to “dumbing it down”.  We also look at the important role the use of Latin plays in enhancing the sense of the sacred in our sacramental expression.  Msgr. Bux’s book does an incredible job of closely examining the nature of  liturgical reform nurtured by Pope Benedict XVI, while Fr. Lang’s book offers a fascinating history of the language used in our celebrations.  Not just for scholars, these works offer invaluable insight into the heart of the liturgy we participate in.

You can find it at ignatius.com

Nicola Bux is a priest of the Archdiocese of Bari and a professor of eastern liturgy and sacramental theology. He has studied and taught in Jerusalem and in Rome. He is a consultor to the Congregations for the Doctrine of the Faith and for the Causes of Saints and consultant of the international Catholic theological journal Communio. He was recently named a consultor to the Office of Liturgical Celebrations of the Supreme Pontiff.

It also can be found here

Uwe Michael Lang, a native of Germany, is a priest of the Congregation of the Oratory of St Philip Neri in London. At present, he is a staff member of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments and teaches at the Pontifical Institute for Christian Archeology and at the Master’s program in “Architecture, Sacred Art and Liturgy” at the UniversitÀ Europea di Roma. In September 2008, he was appointed a Consultor to the Office for the Liturgical Celebrations of the Supreme Pontiff. His book Turning Towards the Lord (2nd edition, Ignatius, 2009), with a preface by then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, has been published in several languages. Most recently, he has edited and contributed to the volume The Genius of the Roman Rite: Historical, Theological and Pastoral Perspectives on Catholic Liturgy (Hillenbrand Books, 2010).

IP#162 Ruben Quezada – For Greater Glory on Inside the Pages

“For Greater Glory: The True Story of  Cristiada The Cristero War and Mexico’s Struggle for Religious Freedom” is meant as a companion book to the film of the same name, but it truly be considered a stand alone in its own right.  Ruben Quezada does a fine job of outlining a horrific persecution which occurred just south of our border a little over 80 years ago, yet many of us know little or nothing about.  The Mexican government brutally killed men, women and children in an attempt to snuff out the life of the Roman Catholic Church in Mexico in the 1920’s.  Bishops and priests were martyred, Churches descrated, along many other atrocities. “Vivo Christo Rey” became the prayer triumphantly proclaimed by the Church Militant…this the story of their fight for religious freedom

You can find the book here

For Greater Glory is a top-flight production whose message of the importance of religious freedom has particular resonance for us today.”
 Most Reverend José Gomez, Archbishop of Los Angeles

For Greater Glory is ‘must-see’ viewing for all those who care about faith and liberty today.”
 Carl Anderson, Supreme Knight, Knights of Columbus

As you read you’ll discover:

• Who were the Cristeros?
• What drove the Mexican government to ruthlessly persecute Catholics?
• Can a priest “wage war”
• What role did groups like the Knights of Columbus play in this armed resistance?
• Why did thousands of Catholics – priests, religious, lay people – willingly give their lives in the Cristiada?
• What role did the U.S. play in ending this bitter conflict?
• What did the Pope do to support the Church in Mexico?
• Which characters in the movie went on to become Catholic saints and blesseds in real life?
• Why is this dramatic episode of history so little known today?
• What is the lesson of the Cristiada for those struggling for religious freedom today?

IP#161 Dr. Austen Ivereigh – How to Defend the Faith Without Raising Your Voice on Inside the Pages

I have read many fine Catholic Apologetic books over the years, but I have to say “How to Defend the Faith Without Raising Your Voice: Civil Responses to Catholic Hot Button Issues” is the BEST!  Dr. Austen Ivereigh, along with the Our Sunday Visitor Editor in Chief John Norton, have compiled the “must have” text for any and all Catholics who desire to respond to the call for the New Evangelization.  More than answers to just about any issue  that could come forward in a discussion about the Catholic Church and the faith we profess, their work encourages  us to respond with reason based on the fundamentals of Catholic Social Teaching and decorum befitting virtue driven discourse.  Once again, this is a MUST HAVE.  Check out Austen’s article in the OSV weekly entitled “How to Defend the Faith” for just a taste of what can be found in the book.

You can find the book here

From the book description (and it’s 100% accurate):

It is about winning friends, not arguments. It is about shedding light, not heat. It’s about reframing the argument so hearts can be opened and minds can be inspired. 

How to Defend the Faith without Raising Your Voice is a new sort of apologetics. It is for those moments when you are thrust into the spotlight as the token Catholic whether the spotlight is simply at the office water cooler or whether it is front and center at the in-laws Thanksgiving celebration. How to Defend the Faith without Raising Your Voice gives Catholics a fresh way of explaining the Church’s teaching on contentious issues humanly, compellingly, and succinctly.

But this book does not pretend to suggest it is as simple as memorizing a speech. Every conversation is different. Every day’s news cycle will bring new arguments and new challenges. Instead, it is a book about what the issues really are and where the criticisms are coming from so you can understand and communicate effectively. 

It is the fruit of a group of speakers and experts brought together by a single idea: to make sure that Catholics and the Church were represented properly in the media when Pope Benedict came to visit the UK in 2010. Their original and thoughtful approach helped make that visit a triumph and now it can be expanded for a much broader use.

Whether read in groups or alone, studied in schools or parishes, How to Defend the Faith without Raising Your Voice offers the same thorough briefings on hot topics and the same top tips for effective communication which helped make the project such a success.


IP#159 Brian O’Neel -Saint Who?: 39 Holy Unknowns on Inside the Pages

We love to hear the stories of the lives of the saints, especially those we are not familiar with!  So we owe a big thank you to
Brian O’Neel for shining the light on 39 holy unknowns in “Saint Who?”.    Men and women, clerics, religious, and laity, married and single, there’s story from all walks of life.  The book contains a short biography of each saint, a section on why that saint merits our attention and devotion today, and a short prayer.  He also discusses with us what makes a blessed, what makes them a saint.  A wonderful read.

You can find the book here

From Servant Books:

Thousands of saints are formally recognized by the Catholic Church. While some are household names, have you heard of:

  • St. Bathilde, the slave queen?
  • St. Pietro Parenzo, the heavenly politician?
  • Bl. Sebastian de Aparicio, the first cowboy?
  • St. Mary Helen MacKillop, the excommunicated saint?

From these now-obscure saints or blesseds come amazing stories of virtue, vice, and the triumph of grace. Brian O’Neel tells these tales, often colorful and always compelling, with humor tempered by an obvious love for his subjects, explaining why they deserve our attention and devotion.

IP#158 Mary Elizabeth Sperry – Bible Top Tens on Inside the Pages

Mary Elizabeth Sperry,  in a way fascinating way, organizes Bible topics and people into multiple lists in “Bible Top Tens: 40 Fun and Intriguing Lists to Inspire and Inform” .  More than just a “trivia” book, “Bible Top Tens”,  is another way to exprience the Bible.

You can find the book here

From the description:

This book is intended to open Scripture in a brand new way. By organizing important people, places, and events into lists, we can reframe our experience and understanding of God’s Word, while serving as a memory aid or providing ideas for further reading and study.

Discover the top ten Bible misunderstandings, the top ten things to know about the Bible, the top ten animal stories, the top ten angelic appearances, or the top ten miracles.

Get introduced to the top ten women with attitude, the top sibling rivalries, the heroes, the villains, or even the top ten people you should know but probably don’t.

Explore the top ten parables, promises, or challenges from Jesus.

IP#157 Mike Aquilina – Mothers of the Church on Inside the Pages

Leave it to the wonderfully thoughtful Mike Aquilina to bring us the lives of just some of those glorious maternal nurturers we call “the Mothers of the Church”.  From the well known Sts. Perpetua and Felicity and St. Monica to lesser known “mothers” like Proba the Poet and St. Olympias, Mike, along with his co-author Christopher Bailey, share their inspiring stories.  Mike Aquilina’s sincere love for these women and the witness they have provided us in our present age helps us to appreciate, once again, what God can do with ordinary people who are open to His extraordinary grace.

You can find Mike’s book here

The Mothers of the Church include:

Holy Women of the New Testament
–St. Blandina
–St. Perpetua and St. Felicity
–St. Helena
–St. Thecla
–St. Agnes of Rome
–St. Macrina
–Proba the Widow
–St. Marcella
–St. Paula
–St. Eustochium
–St. Monica
–Egeria the Tourist

IP#155 Elizabeth Kantor – The Jane Austen Guide to Happily Ever After on Inside the Pages

What great fun and an outstanding resource all in one fantastic book.  I love Jane Austen…I love this book.  Elizabeth Kantor gets it so right!  The book description says it best:

Women today are settling for less than we want when it comes to men, relationships, sex, and marriage. But we don’t have to, argues Elizabeth Kantor. Jane Austen can show us how to find the love we really want.

In The Jane Austen Guide to Happily Ever After, Kantor reveals how the examples of Jane Austen heroines such as Elizabeth Bennett, Elinor Dashwood, and Anne Elliot can help us navigate the modern-day minefields of dating, love, relationships, and sex. By following in their footsteps—and steering clear of the sad endings suffered by characters such as Maria Bertram and Charlotte Lucas—modern women can discover the path to lifelong love and true happiness.

Charged with honesty and humor, Kantor’s book includes testimonies from modern women, pop culture parallels, the author’s personal experiences and, of course, a thorough examination of Austen’s beloved novels.

You can find the book here


“This book would have helped me avoid a few broken hearts for sure! Kantor teaches you how to guard your emotions in an independent, sophisticated, and empowered way through Jane Austen’s works. She offers timeless wisdom for the modern woman, and most importantly, encourages us to take our relationships seriously.”

—Amy Bonaccorso, author of How to Get to “I Do”

IP#153 Mark Brumley – YOUCAT on Inside the Pages

It’s great to be joined once again by Mark Brumley!  This time we discuss YOUCAT, an engaging a catechism designed for a youthful audience.  I say “youthful” because it appeals to seekers in all age groups.  Bright in design, filled with questions and answers, and thoughtful in its presentation of doctrine,  YOUCAT, on every page, brings the faith alive.  A fantastic resource for every home…a perfect gift for confirmation kids and adults alike.  Especially in the light of the challenges facing the Catholic faith in today’s world, we talk with Mark the need for this particular resource.

You can find out more here

What Pope Benedict XVI has to say about the YOUCAT project:

“Study this Catechism with passion and perseverance. Make a sacrifice of your time for it! Study it in the quiet of your room; read it with a friend; form study groups and networks; share with each other on the Internet. By all means continue to talk with each other about your faith.”