This is such a beautiful liturgical season. Besides Christmas and its extension beyond the one day, we celebrate the Holy Family (and every human and Catholic family) and our great and good spiritual mother, Our Lady.
For four Doctrinal Homily Outlines for the Feast of the Holy Family and four more for the Solemnity of Mary the Mother of God, please click here and then scroll down.
Last week, I shared something about David Isaac’s practical guide to virtues Character Building.
A second book that has been a great help to me, in fact, changed my life, is J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. I read it when I was a (very stupid) sixteen-year-old atheist. I can hardly express how much I loved that book and how deeply I wished its world and history were true. When I learned four years later that Tolkien was a Catholic, I had to decide I would not abandon my love despite Tolkien’s great ‘failing’. Later I came to realize that what I so loved about Tolkien’s world was exactly the Catholicism that permeated this masterpiece. Tolkien’s writing helped me come back to the Catholic faith in a few years.
Even later, I wrote my M.A. thesis on Tolkien’s moral vision in The Lord of the Rings. While that was in progress, I bumped into one of my professors who asked me what I was writing about. When I told her, she said, “Why are you wasting your time on that?”
That was back in 1979. In 2000, Tolkien was voted the most influential writer of the twentieth century.
If you have not yet read The Lord of the Rings, you should read The Hobbit first.