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The Patrick Coffin Show | Interviews with influencers | Commentary about culture | Tools for transformation

The Patrick Coffin Show podcast features weekly interviews with A-list influencers and outliers in the effort to recover the Judeo-Christian roots of the culture. Patrick is the Canadian-born former host of Catholic Answers Live, and he has raving fans around the world. He injects these fascinating interviews with his own distinctive blend of depth and levity. If you’re tired of politically correct mediaspeak, you want to see God back in the public square, and you’re not allergic to having a laugh, this is the place to be.
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The Patrick Coffin Show | Interviews with influencers | Commentary about culture | Tools for transformation
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Now displaying: Page 15
May 8, 2018

The Patrick Coffin Show is 100% listener supported. Help us keep our show independent and unfiltered.

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You may have heard of 40 Days For Life, and you may have heard of its founder and former CEO David Bereit. This interview dives into his story, what inspired him to get directly involved in pro-life activism, and into the reasons why he entered the Catholic Church this past Easter. Bereit is a pro at communicating the pro-life message with reason, balance, and passion.

In this interview, you will learn:

  • The secret ingredient in your approach that can mean the difference between an abortion and a life saved.
  • The specific reasons why the timeless teachings of the Catholic Church won Bereit over.
  • The originating incident that led to the founding of 40 Days For Life.
  • Why abortion will never be defeated until we tell the truth about what it does to baby and mother.
  • Why it’s vital that we link arms with people of other faiths, or no faith, to form a non-violent army of people committed to ending abortion and to healing moms and dads whos chose it.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

 

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May 1, 2018

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You may have seen Father Mike in one of his popular Ascension Presents video commentaries. His topics—delivered in his energetic and telegenic style—tend toward what’s currently trending but he always anchors his subject (living together, chastity, celebrity culture, movie and TV examples, etc.) in the timeless teachings of the Church. From what I can see, there is no topic territory that is off limits, including the teaching on homosexuality—the forbidden topic par excellence in today’s climate of political correctness and confusion.

Which brings me to this week’s episode, in which Father Mike and I talk about his new book, Made For Love: Same-Sex Attractions and the Catholic Church https://amzn.to/2J8Ikxj. It’s all about balance, understanding, and having the courage to put the focus where it belongs: on compassion that is yet unafraid to speak the truth.

The issue of homosexuality has been massively co-opted by the secular media and by so-called pro-gay factions with Christianity. The result is widespread confusion: what exactly is the Catholic teaching? Where is it in the Bible? How to respond to family members and friends who “come out”? Is it possible to be biblically faithful and pastorally attuned to peoples’ real needs?

 

In this interview, you will learn:

  • Why the Church makes the careful distinction between inclination and behavior, or between unbidden temptation and chosen sin.
  • How best to respond to a loved one who a loved one who “comes out” to you
  • How our culture of relativism makes it doubly hard to have a conversation about objective morality, especially when it comes to something this emotion-charged
  • The way in which Father Mike’s relationship with his same-sex attracted brother provides a model for imitation
  • Why identifying as “gay” represents a terrible reduction of the dignity of the human person
  • Why the legal reality of “gay marriage” is best understood as a matter of redefinition and has nothing to do with sexual behavior, per se.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

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Apr 24, 2018

Are atheists uniformly dedicated to truth and evidence, to rational thought and logic? Might there be a hidden causal factor at play in more cases than one would imagine? Psychologist and researcher Dr. Paul Vitz thinks so. It’s fatherlessness.

His latest book, Faith of the Fatherless: The Psychology of Atheism, sets forth the case that abusive, absent, or weak fathers very often provide the psychological soil from which atheist weeds are more likely to fester. Using example after example of leading atheists (start the list with Nietzsche, Hume, Sartre, Russell, Camus, Freud, and the so-called New Atheists Dennett, Dawkins, and Hitchens), Vitz reviews the basic life biography and finds a “father wound” in one degree or another.

 

The Patrick Coffin Show is 100% listener supported. Help us keep our show independent and unfiltered.
Consider supporting our work with a one-time or recurring donation HERE.

Are atheists uniformly dedicated to truth and evidence, to rational thought and logic? Might there be a hidden causal factor at play in more cases than one would imagine? Psychologist and researcher Dr. Paul Vitz thinks so. It’s fatherlessness.

His latest book, Faith of the Fatherless: The Psychology of Atheism, sets forth the case that abusive, absent, or weak fathers very often provide the psychological soil from which atheist weeds are more likely to fester. Using example after example of leading atheists (start the list with Nietzsche, Hume, Sartre, Russell, Camus, Freud, and the so-called New Atheists Dennett, Dawkins, and Hitchens), Vitz reviews the basic life biography and finds a “father wound” in one degree or another.

He doesn’t reduce atheism to a pop psych theory (not all atheists share the same experience of an abusive father, and, besides, human beings are complex) but he carefully traces the atheists own words and the ways in which their respective intellectual journies led them to reject God—the Father.

It’s a fascinating read. And, as you’ll soon find out, Dr. Vitz is a fascinating guest.

In this interview, you will learn:

  • Why Sigmund Freud was right in asserting that God is “an exalted father,” but not in the way Freud believed
  • How the memories of even a long deceased father can influence your faith perspective
  • Why Jesus called God Father and not Mother
  • The reasons why Vitz did a control group comparison of philosophers and other writers of the same era and social backgrounds who had warm, close relationships with their father—and how their spiritual outlook differed from the atheist group
  • Why “public atheists” (those devoted to writing and debating their atheism) is overwhelmingly a male phenomenon
  • Why, when women leave a relationship with God they usually don’t become atheists, but they form a new relationship: yogi, guru, New Age community, goddess worship, etc.

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

 

 

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Apr 17, 2018

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I have been reading Rev. Dalbey’s books with great profit since the mid-90s. One of the first Christian leaders to address the crisis of masculinity, Dalbey has laid his hand on an urgent and increasingly obvious problem: men don’t know how to be men.

The source of the problem is multiform: the throwaway divorce culture, the failed Sexual Revolution, the epidemic of pornography, bad or non-existent modeling from one’s own father, and a sense of shame that gets covered over by excessive pride.

What is your relationship like with your father? How has it contributed to the man you are, for better or worse? Did your dad teach you how to pray? Talk to you about sex in a healthy way?

Do you struggle to be real—in all that that implies? How has a rules-based approach to religion insinuated itself into your relationship with Christ our Savior?

Gordon Dalbey has your back, and most probably understands your heart.

 

In this interview, you will learn:

  • How the enemy likes to foment confusion about manhood and masculine identity.
  • Why so many men fall for the false substitutes of portfolio size, power, and pornography, and how to find a way out
  • What the Bible says about the meaning of “male and female He made them” (Gen 5:2)
  • The ways in which the father, not the mother, instills and imparts male identity in young boys
  • The source of the war over “gender” and how to recognize the error at the heart of it
  • A way of renewing your faith in God as Father and Christ as divine Brother

Resources mentioned in this episode:

  

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Apr 10, 2018

The emotional, some say spiritual, effect music has on us is notoriously difficult to put into words. It’s sort of like analyzing why something is funny. The reality ever exceeds our verbal grasp.

Why are minor chords sad and majors happy? Why, when you hear a song from your childhood is there a superglue of emotion attached, bringing you instantly to those moments long ago?

This week’s guest is one of the greats in the choral music world. If you enjoy music with a lush, cinematic sound created for multiple voices on the exquisite side, Morten Lauridsen is your man.

The most frequently performed American composer of choral music, Lauridsen is a National Medal of Arts recipient (2007), he was composer-in-residence of the Los Angeles Master Chorale (1994–2001), and has been a professor of composition at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music for more than 50 years. His work has been recorded on over 200 CDs including five with Grammy nominations.

We’re talking serious musical gravitas here.

On November 11, 2018, a massive concert for international television is being held at the Brandenburg Gate in Germany to mark the centenary of the end of World War One. In addition to Welsh composer Karl Jenkins’ Mass for Peace, the other piece selected is Lauridsen’s beautiful Lux Aeterna. I predict not a dry eye on that night.

You can imagine my surprise when, during the interview, the great man spontaneously began playing a portion of his classic O Magnum Mysterium to explain why the notes for the word “Virgo” ground the piece in a special way!

 

In this interview, you will learn:

  • Why every artist has to risk failure; as not trying guarantees failure
  • How Lauridsen became a late bloomer as a composer, at age 50, and maybe how you can, too
  • Why poetry deserves a massive revival
  • The importance of stillness and quiet for human serenity and creativity
  • The mysterious way in which music connects us to the divine

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

The Patrick Coffin Show is 100% listener supported. Help us keep our show independent and unfiltered.
Consider supporting our work with a one-time or recurring donation HERE.

 

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Join the Conversation

Question of the week:

With only one life to live, if you feel like you have something to create, musically or otherwise, what is stopping you?

 

 

Apr 3, 2018

Christopher West has devoted his adult life to communicating the beauty of the Catholic Faith, particularly through the insights of what’s known everywhere as the Theology of the Body.

First in archdiocesan religious education, then with the Theology of the Body Institute, and now with The Cor Project, West has been out in front, pointing out the Source of Beauty, making connections between superficially disperate dots, and, of course, being the world’s most famous expositor of the thought of St. John Paul the Great’s Theology of the Body.

His life work of explaining and interpreting the five years’ worth of the great Pope’s General Audiences (1979-1984) has launched a whole cottage industry of books, DVDs, and seminars.

I have interviewed Christopher West more than once, but this conversation with him is my favorite. We talked films that fairly vibrate with low-density gospel ideas, pop music lyrics that point Upward, the sad misalignment that leads to giving into the siren song of porn (he calls it “aiming too low”), and why he thinks the Sexual Revolution is on its last lap.

You’ll find this conversation bracing, and maybe challenging, if I had to guess. West pulls insights whole cloth from unexpected places. I’m grateful for his endorsement of the upcoming revised and expanded edition of my first book, Sex Au Naturel.  (More about that exciting development down the road.)

 

In this interview, you will learn:

  • The factors that led to the Sexual Revolution and why it is collapsing under its own weight
  • Examples of pop music, from Bono to Bruce Springsteen, that reflect a deep yearning for the mystery, ultimately, of the divine
  • How the insights of the Theology of the Body are not merely abstract ideas but concrete ways of personal transformation
  • The hidden providential timing of the founding of Playboy magazine by Hugh Hefner, and the radical approach to sex promulgated by a young Polish priest around the same time named Father Karol Wojtyla (later John Paul II).
  • The phenomenon of what West calls “twisted mystics,” otherwise secular artists who tap into universal longings and point in some dim but real way to the reality of the incarnation.

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

The Patrick Coffin Show is 100% listener supported. Help us keep our show independent and unfiltered.
Consider supporting our work with a one-time or recurring donation HERE.

 

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Join the Conversation

Question of the week:

Do I believe I have a human (body and soul) and not just a spiritual, nature?

Mar 27, 2018

She didn’t want to do it.

No way, no how.

Not becoming Catholic.

Lizzie was an established and very popular presence in the “young Protestant dispenses advice to the like-minded” space on YouTube; she grew up in the Church of Christ and imbibed the standard myths about Catholicism. She might pray for Catholics, but become one? Riiiiiight.

Attending Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA, Lizzie began to run into fellow Protestants who were either intensely interested in the Faith or had converted to full membership. Meanwhile, her YouTube channel began to really grow wings. (As of this writing, she has 34,808,077 total views.)

Perhaps wanting to be kind and informative, Lizzie ended up shooting some video commentaries with titles like “Seven Lies Protestants Believe About Catholicism,” and “Questions Protestants Have For Catholics.”

Then she discovered the Church fathers, and, in her revelatory video called (wait for it) “Why I Am Becoming Catholic,” she goes one to explain how the book Upon This Rock by Steve Ray was instrumental in her decision. I grinned audibly. My buddy Steve!

My interview with her, as you’ll see, was a delight. She is direct, candid, and very open about her diagnosis with bipolar disorder. Her journey is about to take a profound leap forward when she enters full communion with the Catholic Church at Easter, 2018.

Pray for this young leader. As an evangelist and content creator for Christ, Lizzie Estella Reezay is going places.

In this interview, you will learn:

  • How her experience of being immersed in misconceptions of Catholicism led to acceptance of countless errors of fact
  • Why you can’t be too careful which authors you read…
  • The one book that supercharged Lizzie’s desire to get to the bottom of The Catholic Thing
  • How her friends and family reacted to the news of her conversion
  • Tools in how to, and how not to, reach out to our separated brethren

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

The Patrick Coffin Show is 100% listener supported. Help us keep our show independent and unfiltered.
Consider supporting our work with a one-time or recurring donation HERE.

 

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Mar 20, 2018

Is art just a luxury for the wealthy? Can there even be a definition for it? How did the Incarnation of the Logos change the world? What did Dostoyevsky mean by having one of his characters in The Idiot say, “in the future, man will be saved by beauty?”

Jonathan Pageau possesses a unique combination of gifts. He is an extraordinary artist, chiefly in the area of carving and iconography (feast your eyes and soul on his stunning work at www.pageaucarvings.com), and he is an articulate social critic, making important connections between the zeitgeist and trends in the world of art and public images. He is also a convert to Orthodoxy from a Protestant background, and serves as the editor of the Orthodox Arts Journal (www.orthodoxartsjournal.org).

Hire this man to speak at your next conference. You’re welcome.

 

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Mar 13, 2018

I keep having the same exchange with my seriously Catholic friends whenever Pope Francis comes up in conversation. It goes something like this: we were enthused about the initial days of the election (he was saying things about evangelization that needed saying, he encouraged us to get out of “mindset ruts” and bring the gospel to the peripheries since the periphery dwellers aren’t knocking on the church door) and then….something happened to the enthusiasm.

Troubling things were said during airplane interviews (which have become more frequent), homilies began to sound more and more political, then official documents began to contain ambiguities and it became increasingly hard to domesticate the problem by blaming “the media” for “misquoting the Pope again.”

Enter Philip Lawler. Lawler is known for his incisive, non-nonsense journalism. But Lawler is no muck-raking, axe-grinding ideologue. His work epitomizes the term, “seasoned veteran.” He was the first layman to edit The Pilot, the official newspaper of the Archdiocese of Boston; he’s a Harvard alumnus, and has covered Catholic affairs for 30 years. The year Pope Francis was elected, Lawler co-wrote a warm tribute book to the new Pontiff, A Call to Serve: Pope Francis and the Catholic Future http://amzn.to/2HhAroh

That was five years back.

A number of years ago, he wrote a book about a difficult topic—what happened to the Catholic Church in Boston before and after the 2002 scandals exploded—titled The Faithful Departed: The Collapse of Boston’s Catholic Culture http://amzn.to/2FpXuwm

He has a new book on an even more difficult topic: an extended attempt at contextualizing and understanding the doctrinal confusions have seeped into the way in which the Holy Father leads, teaches, promotes, and demotes. How to discuss them without disrespecting the person and the office of the Sovereign Pontiff? Of course, there are plenty of “rad Trads” who despise Pope Francis and have devoted themselves to attacking him since his election on March 13, 2013. That’s both unfortunate and predictable, since Pope Francis’s three predecessors didn’t pass muster with the (mercifully small) clique of anti-Vatican II activists, either.

Lost Shepherd: How Pope Francis Is Misleading His Flock http://amzn.to/2tpGS6D, despite its provocative title, is a well-researched account of a papacy that, five years after it began, has untold numbers of orthodox Catholics scratching their heads.

In case you’re wondering, no, Lawler is not accusing the Pope of heresy nor does he think the Holy Father is an anti-pope. Like all serious Catholics, he prays daily for the pope and earnestly wants him to succeed as a teacher and spiritual leader. It’s not a book Lawler even wanted to write.

A recent Pew Center poll http://www.pewforum.org/2018/03/06/pope-francis-still-highly-regarded-in-u-s-but-signs-of-disenchantment-emerge/ reflect a troubling drop in favorability among Catholics polled since he was first elected. Not that the barque of Peter is sinking, at least not yet, but the winds have gotten stiffer and the waves bigger. Seems to be more like rudder damage.  

In the past few months, there has been a sea change in Catholic media regarding coverage of the Pope’s personnel decisions and the ambiguities within certain documents such as, perhaps the highest-profile example, the Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia, (“The Joy of Love”) the fruit of a seemingly rigged Synod.

The sense of unease is growing, and despite the lingering fear to even bring it up, mainstream outlets in the Catholic media world, from EWTN to the UK’s Catholic Herald, Catholic World Report, The Catholic Thing, and others have begun to speak up about this with greater boldness. As long as the tone and content is respectful, Catholics have the right and duty under Canon 212.3 to speak honestly about matters of leadership involving the good of the Church.

Interestingly, Catholics almost relish castigating popes of the past (start the list with the Borgia and Medici Popes) as “scoundrels” or worse. This is done to emphasize that the Holy Spirit protects the universal Church in a particular way through the office of the Successor of Peter, who is protected against teaching something contrary to faith and morals.

Today, there is an unhealthy papalolatry in the air that takes the form of taboo against saying even mildly critical things about what a modern pope has said or done, things, of course, that don’t rise to the level of infallibility. A kind of ultramontane loyalty is attached to everything a pope does no matter how troublesome or controversial.

It’s not helpful. Neither is staying silent.

You don’t have to agree with all of Lawler’s interpretations or conclusions to see that there is a massive amount of discord in the Church today and that her visible head on earth is not doing much to “confirm the faith of the brethren” as the invisible Head said to His first Vicar in Luke 22:32.

In this week’s interview—in a spirit of genuine concern for clarity and filial respect for the person and the office of the Pontiff, who is ever in our prayers—we “go there.”

 

In this episode, you will learn:

  • How to understand that the human side of the papacy does not invalidate it
  • A sense of balance and historical proportion when assessing Pope Francis’ leadership style
  • Why comparing one pope with another is not a helpful exercise
  • The major “upside” to the current papacy—and the opportunity it provides Catholics
  • How Jesus is still faithful to His bride, the Church in the midst of every crisis
  • Many examples of documented statements, pastoral priorities, and political biases that have characterized the management of the Holy See since 2013

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

The Patrick Coffin Show is 100% listener supported. Help us keep our show independent and unfiltered.
Consider supporting our work with a one-time or recurring donation HERE.

 

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Mar 6, 2018

Dr. Ryan Anderson rounds out the final episode in our four-part series on transgenderism. I have been an admirer of Dr. Anderson for a few years now, since the appearance of his two previous books on marriage (What Is Marriage? Man and Woman: A Defense and Truth Overruled ).

In this no-holds-barred interview, Dr. Anderson gets specific about the origins of the “trans movement,” the medical and social ills brought about by the gender reassignment surgery, and what ordinary people can do when asked for their opinion. The social pressure to simply agree with the aims of the ideologues is quite strong today.

 

In this episode, you will learn:

  • The suicide rate for those who go through with reassignment surgery
  • What happens to a high percentage of children who are not pressured or encouraged to go through with the surgery (hint: it’s good news)
  • Why the Obama Administration changed the definition of sex in the 1972 Title IX to “gender identity” and why it changed the debate altogether
  • The heartbreaking, largely untold, fate of those who change their minds after transitioning
  • How to counter the almost non-stop barrage of pro-trans propaganda in movies, TV, and network news
  • The importance of speaking and acting civilly when it comes to speaking with those who support the transgender ideology.

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

 

The Patrick Coffin Show is 100% listener supported. Help us keep our show independent and unfiltered.
Consider supporting our work with a one-time or recurring donation HERE.

 

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Feb 27, 2018

Michelle Cretella, M.D., is president of the American College of Pediatriciansa national organization of pediatricians and other health care professionals dedicated to the health and well-being of children. She is also fed up with the nonstop lies perpetuated by the “trans community” on the world of medical professionals. Big Medicine has become as politicized as Big Oil and Big Tobacco.

As a pediatrician, Dr. Cretella has seen the New Normal up close and personal in the lives of young patients being put into gender transition protocols as early as toddler age. Yes, crazy. I spoke with her about what doctors, especially pediatricians, are facing when it comes to politicized peer pressure to go along with patients’ deep-seated gender confusions.

Very few doctors are willing to step out of the comfort zone and challenge the status quo, even when vulnerable lives are at put at risk. Dr. Cretella and her colleagues at the American College of Pediatricians deserve our support and our prayers.

 

In this episode, you will learn

  • The correct number of sexes from a scientific, medical point of view
  • The facts about suicide rates post-transgender operation
  • Medical realities involved in the mutilation procedure (start the list with double mastectomy for girls and sterilization for boys)
  • The reason the American College of Pediatricians was formed
  • What twin studies show us about gender disorder
  • The real reason why GID (Gender Identity Disorder) was officially renamed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (No 5) as Gender Identity Dysphoria
  • A clear way to understand the difference between sex and gender

 

Recommended reading:

 

 

The Patrick Coffin Show is 100% listener supported. Help us keep our show independent and unfiltered.
Consider supporting our work with a one-time or recurring donation HERE.

 

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Feb 20, 2018

Hudson lived through a long, dark season of shame and sexual confusion. Early exposure to pornography and often feeling inferior to his older brother, led Byblow along a path toward homosexuality, gender confusion, an ingrained porn habit, and self-loathing.  

Years of drifting brought him to a moment of truth, a fundamental choice: to choose love and its demands, or give in to the lawlessness of lust?

In response, God poured out His grace and Byblow was restored to the peace and lasting joy that chastity brings. In this courageously transparent interview, he recalls the sorrow and shame that kept him in invisible chains, but pointing also to the insistent way Christ began to move in his heart and mind.

Today, Hudson Byblow is a sought-after speaker and consultant. His approach to same-sex attraction is fully in line with the teachings of the Church but it emphasizes the dimension of personal testimony and the importance of the lost art of listening.

 

In this episode, you will learn

  • Why the language we use when speaking with hurting or angry people with sexual wounds can make the difference between breakthrough and breakdown
  • How loneliness and self-rejection can fuel porn addiction
  • The psychological roots of cross-dressing and gender confusion
  • How a robust Catholic life provides the security and support for those with backgrounds like this
  • The power of telling your story, of being willing to summarize how God has worked in your life

 

Recommended reading:

 

Patrick Coffin Show is 100% listener supported. Help us keep our show independent and unfiltered.
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Join the Conversation

Question of the week: Why do we need to begin and end with kindness when it comes to speaking with people mired in gender confusion?

Comment below.

 

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Feb 13, 2018

Walt Heyer lived for seven years “with” a female identity named Laura Jensen, having undergone the full gender reassignment surgery as an adult male in his late 30s.

Full mutilation, hormone treatments, driver’s licence with legal name change. In other words, all in.

It took a few years, but the “Laura” persona cracked under the pressure of the real man beneath the mountain of lies, which induced alcoholism, and a suicide attempt. Walt underwent his second reassignment surgery over 15 years ago and has a profound cautionary tale and hard won wisdom to dispense for those with ears to hear.

 

In this episode, you will learn

  • The common myths sold as truths regarding transgenderism
  • Whether transgender surgery ever works in the long term
  • The textbook childhood traumas that typically induce gender dysphoria
  • How a secretive grandmother unwittingly helped destroy Walt’s life by dressing him in a purple chiffon dress at age four.
  • The way in which divine Providence used Walt’s pain to be a source of hope to others
  • How he left the dangerous confusions of the trans movement and found lasting peace.

 

Resources mentioned in this episode

 

Patrick Coffin Show is 100% listener supported. Help us keep our show independent and unfiltered.
Consider supporting our work with a one-time or recurring donation HERE.

 

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Join the Conversation

 

Comment below.

Don’t forget to Subscribe to the show in YouTube, as well as the podcast so you can get the weekly show updates. Check the podcast in iTunes and other podcast directories, while you are there, please leave an honest review.

Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated!

Feb 6, 2018

Jordan Peterson has been called “the most influential public intellectual in the Western world right now” by the New York Times, “the world’s most sought after psychologist” by Psychology Today, and “rock star” by most every other pundit—admiringly by fans, sarcastically by critics.

Whatever he is, Jordan Bernd Peterson is crushing it. As of this writing, his YouTube channel has close to 800,000 subscribers; his videoed lectures on the interface between psychology and the biblical narrative are virally shared; his Patreon account snags over $70,000 per month; and his live lectures and debates sell out everywhere.

But what recently supercharged his notoriety (?) was his patient take-down of England’s Channel 4 presenter Cathy Newman during a contentious interview about the so-called gender pay gap. If you missed that slow-motion car wreck, it’s here. As of this writing, it generated over six million views and pushed a worldwide audience in his direction very quickly—and providentially, just in time for the release of his new book, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos.

In this interview (my fourth with him, the first in person), I get into some of the questions I many of my listeners have had about his worldview. Is he a Christian? Agnostic seeker? Lapsed Catholic academic trying to climb back home? We go there.

Peterson’s Bible exegesis approaches the sacred text from surprising angles, mainly drawn from Jungian insights into archetypes and mythopoetic interpretations of the events and players of salvation history. He is a gifted storyteller with an intense way of getting to the inner truths of the outer stories.

If you’re looking for black and white answers that bear the whiff of complete certainty, try a dogmatic theologian. Peterson is acutely allergic to tossing out glib answers to questions he believes need to be deeply pondered before wading into premature answers. In sense, many of his lectures seem to be orally delivered first drafts of something he might write down later and polish. He clarifies his own thinking as he goes.

For people (especially mothers and fathers) who are concerned about the aggressive neo-Marxist social engineering on college campuses and about the rise of the dictatorship of relativism, Peterson’s courage and perseverance in the face of intense pushback from defenders of the academic status quo is downright inspiring.

12 Rules for Life is not short, and is not for everyone. His eponymous rules embody the kind of tough love messaging that was common in say, pre-1960s America. In a post-modern era of politically correct bromides beloved by feminists and their beta male cheerleader, Peterson offers strong lye, albeit peppered with an offbeat sense of humor. He knows that some medicine now and again needs a spoonful of sugar to go down.

 

In this episode, you will learn

  • How his role in the battle for free speech in Canada with the passage of Bill C-16, which criminalized “misgendering” someone, ended up launching his new career as a social critic and surrogate father to millions of millennials.

  • Why PTSD is as much about the realization of the evils of which one is capable as about life-threatening experiences one has had.

  • His thought process in analyzing the foundational miracle of Christianity, the Resurrection of Christ.

  • The ways in which the West is still in something of a hangover from Soviet Communism.

  • How suffering can be an introduction to experiences of profound meaning and sensitivity to the pain of others.

  • The enduring influence of his father (and former teacher) Walter Peterson.

  • Why failing to speak up against evil is far more costly than actually doing so.

 

Resources mentioned in this episode

 

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Jan 30, 2018

Here’s an easy one for you: would you like to meet someone, say, at a business meeting or barbeque and actually remember his or her name for more than a nanosecond? Would you like to remember a list of grocery items even if you don’t have a pen and paper with which to write it down?

Meet Harry Lorayne.

I get a lot of compliments about my memory, and I like to give credit where it’s due. Harry Lorayne’s first book, How To Develop a Super Power Memory  (1957) is still, for my money, the best way to learn his system. His later book Ageless Memory: The Memory Expert’s Prescription For a Razor-Sharp Mind  (1957) incorporates many additional insights for memory improvement.

Lorayne became nationally known for his many television appearances through the years, having “done” all the television biggies, from Ed Sullivan to Jack Paar, to Johnny Carson (24 times!), to Mike Douglas to Merv Griffin, et al. His showcase piece is to meet hundreds of strangers, one after the other, and then recite everyone’s name later with perfect accuracy.

Hale and hearty at 92, Mr. Lorayne epitomizes line from Psalm 92:14, “They will still yield fruit in old age; they shall be full of sap and very green.” It’s always a thrill to interview a long-time mentor, and I found myself smiling throughout the entire interview with the great man.

The personal obstacles he overcame growing up on the mean streets of the Lower East Side would flatten most people. His childhood family experiences and his early days breaking into the world of magic (and memory) performance are straight out of the Damon Runyon school of hard knocks. He lost his beloved wife Renee three years ago after 70 years of marriage. (Ponder that level of loss the next time you’re feeling sorry for yourself.)

But Harry Lorayne keeps putting one foot up, one foot down, all the way to Londontown, as the saying goes. He has at least one more book in the creative pipeline, and he still does the occasional convention lecture to magicians and others for whom he is a living legend. Not bad for someone who grew up with undiagnosed dyslexia and crippling boyhood shyness.

I have a half dozen of his books, but few more interesting than his autobiography, Before I Forget which his long-time pal Mel Brooks calls “a rememoir.” Talk about funny and insightful anecdotes – couples’ trips around the world with Brooks and his wife the late Anne Bancroft; things going terribly wrong during shows, and his big television break on The Jack Paar Show, thanks to writer Moss Hart, then a very big name.  (Mr. Lorayne, a self-described crier, barely manages to hold it together when recalling Hart’s kindness.)

Lorayne speaks the way he writes – quickly, crisply, clearly. His teaching style is at once compressed (he never wastes a word) and conversational (he never sounds “professorial”).

Harry Lorayne is an American original. I know you’ll enjoy this audio only conversation.

Ad multos annos, Mr. Lorayne.

 

Join the Conversation

Question of the week:

Lorayne says that memory is just a synonym for understanding. Do you agree?

 

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Jan 23, 2018

In most social circles today, if you announce that you’re a Buddhist, that’s cool; you’re like a celebrity. If you say you’re into yoga retreats, that’s wonderful. Even if you say you’re a Christian (understood as Protestant) everything is still more or less groovy, unless you’re one of those fundamentalist types that believes Jesus really rose from the dead.

But announce you’re Catholic? Better get ready for the inquisition. Tim Staples knows all about it. Tim was raised Southern Baptist, later became an Assemblies of God youth pastor, and is now the director of apologetics and evangelization at Catholic Answers.

In this interview, Tim goes off-road to talk about life as a Catholic in a post-modern culture. How has the papacy of Pope Francis been a game changer? Some have implied or accused Pope Francis of being a heretic. Tim weighs in with his take.

Last year was the commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the revolt now called the Protestant Reformation. How can Catholics talk about about the breakaway that had led to constant, and predictable, splinterization of so many different denominations, each contradicting the others is various ways?

And what is ecumenism, anyway? What should the endgame be for our prayers “for Christian unity”? Tim Staples has been debating, writing about, and pondering all these questions for 30 years. Listen and learn.

 

In this episode you will learn:

  • Specific examples of how to interact with people who disagree
  • How life as a Catholic is, in a certain sense, different under the unpredictable papacy of Pope Francis
  • Why ecumenism can’t possibly mean merely being nice and collaborating on projects
  • How to recover from an awkward start to an interview!
  • That Jesus Christ founded one Church

Much more!

Recommended Reading

Behold Your Mother: A Biblical and Historical Defense of the Marian Doctrines   by Tim Staples

Catechism of the Catholic Church 

 

Join the Conversation

Question of the week:

Why is it important to get the definition of ecumenism right?

 

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Jan 16, 2018

As promised, I posed the questions solicited from Facebook about Medjugorje to my guest, historian Donal Foley, author of Medjugorje Revisited: 30 Years of Visions or Religious Fraud?  and Marian Apparitions, the Bible, and the Modern World 

Please understand that the number of questions exceeded the time limit of the show, but I did my best to compress together the ones that either asked the same basic thing or were already answered in the first episode. Be assured that none were skipped or censored.

In this episode you will learn:

  • The occultic undertones to the manner and mode of the Medjugorje visions and how closely they resemble condemned apparitions
  • If the visions are not of God, and yet so many good fruits have resulted in the shorter term, what the longer term endgame might be from Satan’s perspective
  • Why the fallen or suspended priests who have been closely allied with the seers provide a serious reason to be skeptical
  • Whether there have been any verified medical healings as a result of the apparitions

Much more!

 

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Jan 9, 2018

On June 24, 1981, a clear Wednesday afternoon, some young people went up Podbrdo Hill near the small hamlet of Medjugorje in then Yugoslavia. When they came down, they told people they saw “the Gospa,” (Croatian for “Our Lady”). A few more joined them, and it happened again.

And again. And again.

Today, three decades later, the six teen-aged seers are middle-aged adults and are still getting these visitations with their alleged secrets and signs. A global movement supporting these visions has been selling the phenomenon as real, in the face of the official stance of the Catholic Church.

What is the official stance? What is the truth about Medjugorje? I spoke with British historian and researcher Donal Foley about the whole story behind the visions, about the assessment by the local bishops (and every official commission that ever investigated the seers’ claims), and about the criteria the Church uses to approve or condemn private apparitions.

There are undoubtedly good fruits associated about some of the more disturbingly bad fruits of Medjugorje. We can start with that: there are good fruits, and that is GREAT. There is much more to the story, including some very bad fruits.

His book Medjugorje Revisited: 30 Years of Visions or Religious Fraud? is a must-read for anyone interested in the most popular unapproved apparition in history. It is the definitive account. (Full disclosure: I wrote the Preface).

There are three groups of people on the Medjugorje spectrum: 1) true believer zealots; 2) sarcastic naysayers; and 3) the much larger group in the middle—people who are either on the fence, ignorant of the details, or who don’t care one way or the other. This two-part series is meant for that much larger middle group.

One American theologian told me privately, “Medjugorje is not only unapprovable; it’s a giant tar baby. Whoever touches it gets sticky tar all over himself.” So why am I doing it anyway? Clickbait? Attention? Not even close. As I’m sure my comment box will reflect, that first group, the fanatics—mercifully small in number—will provide lots of “attention,” all of it hostile and negative. They cannot can’t abide any information getting out there that contradicts almost four decades of propaganda.

The Medjugorje Movement dominates the publishing and internet world, fleeces good people of millions of dollars based on half-truths and outright lies, and people have a right to know a fuller account of the story. In the scores of books and websites that peddle the  phenomenon, you will not find references to its serious problems, and so pilgrims are kept largely in the dark. This is a problem.

I have dear friends whom I love and respect who believe the Blessed Virgin Mary continues to appear to the seers. There’s no soft way to say that the Church has never wavered in the official judgment, however, starting with the late Bishop Pavao Zanic, and now Bishop Ratko Peric of the Diocese of Mostar-Duvno (to whom the Church gives the right and duty to judge apparitions). The Latin phrase is non constat de supernaturalitate, meaning, “it is not established that anything supernatural is happening.” It is a negative judgment, and the Church has never wavered in giving it.

Why negative? Medjugorje enthusiasts are quick to claim that it simply means something like, “Wait and see the final approval; in the meantime, go there so you, too, can discover that the Blessed Mother is appearing.” That logic won’t work, for the same reason that if a man asks a woman to marry him and she replies, “Let me get back to you” -- that’s a no. He’s only engaged after she says yes.

The fact that more than one commission has been set up by Church authorities stems not from “doubt about the disbelieving local bishop,” nor did the Vatican “take it out of his hands.” The Movement repeats this mantra frequently. The real reason for additional commissions is disobedience to the judgment itself, as the local Ordinaries have been dealing with fanatical attachment to the visions from the get-go.

Despite the spiritual bullying that some of the zealots employ, it is perfectly fine for Catholics to disbelieve the claims of Medjugorje, as even approved apparitions like Fatima and Lourdes are not binding on the faithful.

As this is being written, the results of the investigative Ruini Commission (chaired by Cardinal Camillo Ruini of Rome and initiated by Pope Benedict XVI in 2009) have been on the desk of Pope Francis for two years. A rumor floated around the internet last year that the Commission is set to approve “the first seven” apparitions—a rumor based on information leaked to a pro-Medjugorje Italian journalist)

In addition to my interview this week with Donal Foley, interested readers need to read this summary regarding that first week in late June, 1981, compiled by Bishop Ratko Peric. The summary is based on the taped interviews with the seers. It’s devastating evidence against the claims of Medjugorje, particularly the first seven apparitions.

Please note that this is not an “anti-Medjugorje” position. It’s a pro-Catholic one. As with most disputes in the Church, this one is about authority. The legitimate authority of the local bishop, His Excellency Ratko Peric, has been rejected, derided, and, in one instance, through a physical attacked. Not exactly a good fruit.

I pray this conversation with Mr. Foley will be of great value to you and I highly recommend his comprehensive book on the matter, and also his Marian Apparitions, the Bible, and the Modern World.

 

In this episode you will learn

  • The long history of disobedience by the Franciscans serving in the local Diocese.
  • The official judgment of the Church, what it means, and why it is so.
  • The disturbing, occultic elements of the visions of Medjugorje you won’t read about in pro-Medjugorje websites and books.
  • Why ex-Franciscan friar Tomislav Vlasic, the original self-described spiritual director of the seers, was defrocked in 2009 by Pope Benedict XVI (this is the man of whom “the Gospa” told the seers, “Thank Tomislav very much for he is guiding you very well. Go in the peace of God, my angels!” —February 28, 1982)
  • Why the Church does not bind the faithful even to approved private apparitions.

 

Resources mentioned in this episode

Marian Apparitions, the Bible, and the Modern World by Donal Foley 

Medjugorje Revisited: 30 Years of Visions or Religious Fraud? By Donal Foley 

The Medjugorje Deception: Queen of Peace, Ethnic Cleansing, Ruined Lives by Dr. E. Michael Jones

VERY IMPORTANT TO READ: Bishop Ratko Peric, the local Ordinary has compiled the following summary of the first week of apparitions here:

http://md-tm.ba/clanci/first-seven-days-apparitions-medjugorje

 

Join the Conversation

Question of the week:

With the embarrassment of riches we already have—the Blessed Trinity, the sacraments, the papacy, the magisterium, the Holy Bible, approved apparitions—why do some people still attach themselves to unapproved apparitions?

Next week’s episode, Part 2, where questions solicited from Facebook cheerfully answered! Don't miss it. 

 

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Jan 2, 2018

Ask Katie Ascough (pronounced azkoe) if she ever dreamed a year ago that she would be elected president of the Student Union of the 32,000 strong University College in Dublin (UCD), only to be impeached eight months later for following the law regarding advertising abortion services. Ouch, to say the least.

The third year medicinal chemistry major won the election hands down and disclosed from the start that she is pro-life, although she was not the “pro-life candidate” as the Irish press labeled her. She just wanted to make some real improvements for UCD students, like healthier cafeteria food, better living conditions, and open discourse among disparate groups.

In this interview, she shared with me what she did that induced so many of her fellow UCD students to impeach her (the first time in UCD history). The reality behind the misleading headlines is maddening and provides both a snapshot of post-Christian Ireland and an example of media manipulation. It turns out that my guest was found guilty of EWPL (existing while pro-life).

 

In this episode you will learn

  • Why Katie Ascough represents the best of public pro-life witness: intelligent, honest, and consistent.
  • What it was like to have her own team of officers turn on her, one by one.
  • How the Irish media, and contemporary college settings generally, reflect a wall-to-wall animus against Catholics who are willing to serve in public office.
  • A great example of how to endure pushback and persecution with grace and grit.

 

Resources mentioned in this episode

Target Africa by Obianuju Ekeocha

Love Unleashes Life by Stephanie Gray

 

Join the Conversation

Question of the week: How much does the fear of human respect stop me from becoming more actively pro-life?

 

Don’t forget to Subscribe to the show in YouTube, as well as the podcast so you can get the weekly show updates. Check the podcast in iTunes and other podcast directories, please leave an honest review.

Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated!

Dec 26, 2017

This is episode is my first to feature two guests on the same topic, although Episode 34  included Jordan Peterson and Senator Don Plett at the same time in separate cities.

This week’s show topic is the enduring cultural impact of Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life (1947) through the eyes of two women close to its creation.

I say “Frank Capra’s” because that’s how the movie was marketed (it’s now called the vanity credit) and may help explain why the film got only a so-so reception when it was first released. Most of Mr. Capra’s pre-World War II movies were so sweet-hearted that they later earned the not-quite-complimentary moniker “Capra-corn.”

It’s a Wonderful Life is one of the most critically acclaimed films ever made. Nominated for five Academy Awards including Best Picture, recognized by the American Film Institute as one of the 100 best American films ever made, and placed number 11 on its initial 1998 greatest movie list, it also ranked number one on its list of the most inspirational American films of all time.

Think about that, in light of the hundreds of thousands of movies ever made.

By the end of the War, though, the mood of the movie-going public had shifted, as I wrote about the making of the movie in National Review a few years ago here

The next day after it was published, an appreciative email from a woman named Mary Owen arrived in my inbox. Turns out, Mary is the daughter of actress Donna Reed, who played Mary Bailey, the wife of James Stewart’s George Bailey.

I thanked her for the lovely email and we had a few back-and-forths. After my podcast was up on two feet and spreading around the world (11o countries and counting), I thought it would be fun to have her on the show to talk about her mother’s role in this now-international favorite Christmas movie and to learn some back story to her mother’s career and her commitment to writing back to the G.I’s who wrote to her from the trenches and the gun turrets of World War II.

(Oh, by the way, she was not named for the character her mother played in the Capra movie.) The interview segues nicely into the next one, a rich conversation with actress Karolyn Grimes who played Zuzu, one of the four Bailey kids. Remember Zuzu’s petals? This was a real treat for me who loves the movie so well, and I know it will be for you as well.

I learned, among other things, how much Mrs. Grimes suffered as a teen when her mother died and then the next year her father was killed and she became a ward of the state—then “rescued” by an aunt and uncle in Missouri. An unhappy home situation after an abrupt end to her budding acting career (she also played Debbie, the daughter of David Niven and Loretta Young in another Christmas favorite, The Bishop’s Wife).

For those of us who can’t gobble up enough trivia and true stories about It’s a Wonderful Life, Mrs. Grimes is a treasure trove of first hand memories and insights!

 

In this episode you will learn

  • How Donna Reed’s work represents the best of the Golden Age of television and movies
  • Why she made sure she was “just a regular mom” with Mary and her other real-life children
  • The story of how Reed’s children found a shoebox full of correspondence with American soldiers from the War in her Bel Air home 65 years later
  • Why Owens thinks the movie that made her mother a household name has such enduring appeal
  • Who is the oldest living cast member (hint: it’s not one of the child actors)
  • What it was like to be on set with Frank Capra and to appear with Jimmy Stewart
  • The ways in which It’s a Wonderful Life touched the lives of the cast and crew forever.

 

 Resources mentioned in this episode

Blu-Ray of It’s a Wonderful Life 

Blu-Ray of The Bishop’s Wife

It’s a Wonderful Life Book  edited by Jeanine Basinger

 

Additional resources

It’s a Wonderful Life: A Memory Book by Stephen Cox.

The Essential It’s a Wonderful Life: A Scene-by-Scene Guide to the Classic Film by Michael Willian

The Name Above the Title: An Autobiography by Frank Capra

  

 

 

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Dec 19, 2017

Tony Esolen is both a sage and a survivor of the culture war. He knows there’s a war over which camp gets to determine the default setting narrative, and he knows the cost of warfare. He also knows it’s not a military war (at least not yet) but a war of ideas and moral stances.

Esolen suffered a bumpy and very public exit from Providence College last year, where he taught English and classics since 1990 -- their youngest full tenured professor ever. But the diversity demon took hold and Esolen fought back manfully. In the end, he stepped away from the salary, the tenure, the sabbatical, and the sundry perks and joined the faculty of Thomas More College of Liberal Arts in Merrimack, NH.

Like Ferdinand the Bull at the end of the Munro Leaf story, Esolen is happy. Our interview covered the story behind his departure from Providence not in a literary gossip way but in a What Went Wrong With Catholic Colleges way.

We talk about the new Center for the Restoration of Christian Culture  and the importance of getting in the game of reclaiming our cultural heritage.

 

In this episode you will learn:

  • Why the need to rebuild culture NOW is so urgent
  • A sample of the books we ought to read to guide us
  • The importance of beautiful and reverent liturgy
  • The reasons why parents need to take back, as best they can, the education of their children from the education establishment bureaucrats
  • The difference literacy makes in the lives of children and family life

 

 Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

Join the Conversation:

Question of the week:

What small thing can I do as a family to restore the Christian culture?

 

Comment below.

 

Don’t forget to Subscribe to the show in YouTube, as well as the podcast so you can get the weekly show updates. Check the podcast in iTunes and other podcast directories, please leave an honest review.

Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated!

 

Dec 12, 2017

It’s that time of year again when we review the notable “holiday” movies for their adherence to the real meaning of Christmas, production quality, and merits and demerits. Who better than the founder of Decent Films, Steven Greydanus?

Steve is not only the father of seven and a permanent deacon with the Archdiocese of Newark, he is a prolific movie critic and newly minted member of the elite New York Film Critics’ Circle.

Ever since the first A Christmas Carol silent film came out in 1901 (!), Christmas and movies have gone together like Bob Cracthit and Tiny Tim. Since then, there have been over 30 adaptations of the Dickens original to the big or small screen.

In this episode, here is a sample of the Christmas themed movies Steven and I talk about in this episode:

 

Elf, starring Will Farrell, produced by my friend Todd Komarnicki, who appeared in Episode 25  of the show

Die Hard  starring Bruce Willis. Is it really a Christmas movie? Discuss. And we do!

A Midnight Clear C starring Gary Sinese. Biblical allusion galore in this tragically little known war movie set at Christmas.

Joyeux Noel, a multi-country co-production about the true story of a Christmas Eve impromptu cease-fire between the Germans and the Allies.

It’s a Wonderful Life,  starring James Stewart. For my money the greatest film ever made. If you disagree, we can’t be friends. Want the story behind the story? Read this. It’s what got the attention of my upcoming guest Mary Owen, daughter of actress Donna Reed, the incandescent Mary Bailey, wife of George.

Meet John Doe  starring Gary Cooper. The other Frank Capra movie about a good man tempted to suicide on Christmas Eve. Bizarrely forgotten classic, as I point out here.

We also talked about the bad ones, like Ron Howard’s super-lousy How the Grinch Stole Christmas and a few other rancid things disguised as movies. Since this is a respectable joint—I ain’t linking to ‘em.

Dec 6, 2017

Is the threat of terrorism from the Islamic world a clear and present danger? Is there a way to broach this uncomfortable topic in a balanced and charitable way? Is it Islamophobic to even pose these questions? Author and founder of Jihad Watch, Robert Spencer has been writing and speaking about the foundational documents of Islam, the Qur’an and the Hadith, for over 15 years.

It doesn’t matter that his books, 17 in all so far, carefully distinguish between Muslims who do not follow the literal sense of the Qu’ran and those who do. He still gets repeatedly branded as a hate-monger and, the shame label du jour, “Islamophobe.”

Spencer has finally embraced that label, with key caveats, in the title of his new book, Confessions of An Islamophobe. which is part memoir, and part catalogue of real-world applications of Islamic texts and traditions.

There are few topics that are subject to more confusion and fuzzy thinking than Islam’s relationship to modern liberal democracies, the explicit teachings of its holy books, and the relationship between Christianity and Islam. For his troubles in writing about jihad-inspired attacks throughout the UK, Spencer is still banned in the UK (by then-Home Secretary now Prime Minister Theresa May) and remains a persona non grata in many circles.

One word very rarely used against him is wrong. (I believe he did make one error of fact in our interview, although of the benign variety, in saying that Israel is the only place in the Middle East where Christians are increasing in number.)

There is an Advent tie-in here, straight from Archbishop Fulton Sheen’s 1951 classic The World’s First Love.The chapter, “Mary and the Moslems,” is worth the book price. Prophetic insights into how our Lady of Fatima has a role to play in the conversion of Muslims to Christ.

In his latest book, Spencer meticulously outlines the various groups who are under special threat today by the Sharia-minded ethos, from women and homosexuals, to Jews and Christians.

In this candid interview, you will discover:

  • How to respond when people claim that the Catholic Church officially teaches that Islam is a religion of peace
  • The rationale the jihadis give for their violence
  • How the far Left and militant Islam are strange bedfellows
  • How to talk about Islamic-inspired evil while respecting and speaking with ordinary Muslims who also abhor that evil
  • Why the West needs a serious, loud, and urgent wake-up call to what’s coming next.

Question of the Week:  How much has political correctness undermined our willingness to talk candidly about Islamic terrorism?

 

Nov 28, 2017

“Dr. J” to her tribe, this influencer as a PhD and teaching experience at Yale, and George Brown University. An economist by training, she has invaluable insights into the wreckage we see around us caused by the failed Sexual Revolution. The organization she founded, The Ruth Institute, exists to help survivors of this very public shipwreck.

With the Obergefel v Hodges (2015) decision redefining marriage at the federal level, we have reached a legal tipping point. Most Americans support marriage as it’s been defined for millennia, as the lifelong union of one man and one woman with openness to children. Culture is one thing, laws are another.

If you want practical insights into how to talk about this and other challenges such as our collective no-fault divorce attitude (yes, it has infected “good Catholic” circles), and the forgotten players known as children, this is the interview for you.

You will learn:

  • Proven strategies for framing the arguments
  • How to avoid taking the bait offered by anti-marriage activists
  • The importance of keeping the conversation where it needs to be: on the linking of children to their parents.
  • How to articulate reasons for supporting marriage without reference to either homosexual behavior on the one hand, or religious tenets on the other.

Question of the week (for the married): When people look at your marriage, how likely are they to say, “I want a marriage like that”?

(For the unmarried): What is a good question to ask your boyfriend or girlfriend that would either qualify or disqualify them as a good candidate for marriage?

 

Resources recommended in this episode:

101 Tips for a Happier Marriage: Simple Ways for Couples to Grow Closer to God and to Each Other by Jennifer Roback-Morse and Betsy Kerekes

Sex Au Naturel: What It Is and Why It’s Good For Your Marriage, by Patrick Coffin

Additional resources:

Go to ruthinstitute.org for more from Dr. J.

Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom by Ryan Anderson

Getting the Marriage Conversation Right: A Guide for Effective Dialogue by William May

 

Don’t forget to Subscribe to the show in YouTube, as well as the podcast so you can get the weekly show updates. Check the podcast in iTunes and other podcast directories, please leave an honest review.

Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated!

 

 

Nov 21, 2017

Get your C.S. Lewis on! Lovers of the works of Clive Staples Lewis (+1963), especially The Chronicles of Narnia septet will not want to miss this interview with Lewis scholar and Catholic convert, Dr. Michael Ward of Oxford and Houston Baptist University.

The Narnia series has been one of the most critically analyzed book series in history since it was penned over 60 years ago. My guest in this episode has discovered a interpretative framework to the seven books that eluded the Lewisphere for decades and now has them abuzz.

It’s all about the seven planets of the medieval cosmos. Even if you’ve re-read the books many times, Dr. Ward’s insights will bring you a whole new depth and wonder to C.S. Lewis’s best known work.

And because he is English (I say, the inventors of the language you’re now reading) his prose will expand your vocabulary as well!

I should note one thing. At the end of the interview, I jokingly asked him about his work for Q under Her Majesty the Queen. This is because he had a walk-on part in the James Bond film The World Is Never Enough. (He’s the bespectacled, white lab-coated assistant to Q in this funny scene, handing 007 his X-ray glasses at 1:20: )

In this episode you will learn:

  • What subtle, overarching symbolic framework governs the seven-fold story of the Narnia books (hint: think planets, not sacraments)
  • That John Williams’s Star Wars theme, shall we say, borrowed promiscuously from Gustav Holst’s “Mars: Bringer of War”
  • The meaning of the words etiolated, valitudinarian, and aestival—handy for use at cocktail parties...
  • Some important background on what inspired Lewis
  • The importance of atmosphere or “tone” in great works of literature and why it resembles the mystery in music.

Resources recommended in this episode:

Planet Narnia: The Seven Heavens in the Imagination of C.S. Lewis by Michael Ward

Gustav Holst, The Planets (music CD)

S. Lewis: A Complete Guide to His Life & Works by Walter Hooper

The Cambridge Companion to C. S. Lewis ed. By Michael Ward and Robert MacSwain

The World Is Not Enough, James Bond film DVD starring Pierce Brosnan, co-starring….Michael Ward.

 

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