Teaching & Suggestions

I will be on Catholic Answers Live Monday at 6:00 PM Eastern. We will discuss the Miracles of Jesus with an emphasis on the Multiplication of Loaves and Fish. When confronted with this at Mass a while ago I wrote a letter to the priest which became an article in Catholic Answers Magazine. Article HERE. 

jesus-feed-5000-300x225In John 6:1-14 it says Jesus fed 5,000 men plus women and children. When Jesus fed the 10,000+ people, he didn’t really do a miracle, right?

He just taught everyone to care and share, right? You’ve probably heard that homily, right?

The people had all brought picnic baskets which they kept hidden up under their robes.

Jesus convinced them all to pull out their picnic baskets to share with everyone else. The REAL miracle was not multiplying loaves and fish, but in teaching selfish people to share.

Isn’t that sweet? And after they shared their food Jesus taught them all to sing “Kum Ba Ya” and they joined in the liturgical dance. A good time was had by all! Or so say some trendy homilists!

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***Click on the image to learn more about Steve’s talk DEFENDING THE EUCHARIST: YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT ***

Well I had ENOUGH of that nonsense. I sat at Mass on Corpus Christi Sunday and heard the priest insult the intelligence of everyone in the church. He also insulted the Word of God and the tradition of the Church. He twisted the Gospel reading like a rubber nose.

I almost stood up to protest but my good wife said, “Steve, no! Go home and write!” So I did.

About 12 pages later I had written a very thorough response to the trendy priest and to all others who preach this nonsense. I sent a copy to the priest, to his bishop and to Catholic Answers. It was then published in the January 2008 issue of THIS ROCK Magazine.

CrossingTheTiberSm.jpgI hope this thorough rebuttal of nonsense will be copied and given to very homilist who insults us with such pablum. Hopefully we can put this insulting claptrap to bed once and for all.

For the whole article in THIS ROCK click here. My book CROSSING THE TIBER deals extensively with the Eucharist in the Old and New Testaments and the first five centuries of Christianity. You can learn more here.

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Two things profoundly touched me at Mass today. These things are shared not for my sake but to encourage and inspire the reader — you. 

First, the Mass was full and people were standing in the back. This is a “poor parish” but Fr. Bob and a team of young people have reached out to the community. It has worked. The church is full for all the weekend Masses. 

What is particularly moving is the blend of people — a great snapshot of the universal Church. Lots of whites, yes, but black singles and families too. Orientals, Middle-eastern, Hispanics…  And I made a mental calculate yesterday and concluded that more than half of the people were under the age of thirty. 

And they were participating, singing praying and visibly enjoying the Mass. What a joy for me! The Church is very much alive.

The second thing that touched me was a young black girl with her baby. She was nicely dressed and took good care of her baby boy. She looked uncomfortable, didn’t go up for holy communion and stayed to herself.  

Sometimes the Lord puts something in our mind or heart and hopes we will follow through. Usually we are too shy, timid or hesitant. “How do I know that is really the Lord asking me to do that?” 

Yesterday the Lord nudged me and I felt compelled to give the girl some money. I didn’t want to insult her or be condescending so I almost didn’t do it. But I pulled out my wallet and grabbed a $50 bill. After Mass I walked over to her and patted the boy not the head and said, “Beautiful baby you have.” She said “Thanks.”

Reaching out I handed her the $50 and said, “Use this to do something nice for him.” She looked surprised, I smiled and continued toward the door. A moment later she caught us before we left and said, “How did you know?” I said, “How did I know what?” She looked at me curiously for a moment and said, “How did you know that we are in a very tough financial position right now? How did you know?”

I said, “I didn’t know. The Lord told me to give you $50 and so I did.” She thanked me again and with a still incredulous look on her face she gathered up her baby and diaper bag and I was grabbed by another couple and didn’t see where the young mother went. I have a call in to the pastor to see if I can find out who she was so we can maybe help her some more.

After that event I thanked the Lord a hundred times and laid in bed full of joy that God had used me to do — who knows what? Was that her first time to church feeling lonely and not sure what to do? Did that small act of kindness pay a bill or allow her to buy food much needed that day? Will it encourage her to come back to Mass? Will that small act of generosity inspired by God lead that young boy to be a priest someday? 

I don’t know, but I am very happy this morning. The Lord is correct, “It is better to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35). Try it!

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I thought of a helpful illustration to explain why “cradle Catholics” are often unable to explain and defend the Catholic faith. The example has its weaknesses, but it does help get the point across.

As an American I asked myself this question: if some one trained to attack America intellectually approached me on the street and challenged my country, would I be ready and able to defend the USA? Would I know all the historical details, dates, and facts? Do I know the U.S. Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, the Supreme Court rulings or even the ancient documents that preceded the birth of our nation—the documents and events that formed the foundation for our government?

The answer is simple: “No, I would not be prepared.”

But I am an American. I love my country. I was born here and believe in the principles and love the freedom that are American. I know my country has many problems and I do not love everything that is American. But I would be unprepared to explain and defend the details and documents of my nation even though I love the USA and would readily stay an American citizen rather than join another country.

This is much the same as a “cradle Catholic” like those in the Philippines. They are often ashamed that they cannot defend the faith, but they are like me as an American. I was born American and never been in a situation where I had to defend my country in a rigorous intellectual debate. Filipinos have been Catholics for 400 years. They love their faith, the Lord Jesus, Mama Mary and the Catholic Church. But for 400 years they have been a Catholic nation and never needed to “defend” it. They only needed to love it and obey it.

But now the wolves are approaching their islands and making great inroads devouring the flock. The attack comes not only from cults and sects, but also from modernism and Americanism. They are pursued from every side. They are pushed to leave the Church, to join the cults and sects or to pursue pleasure, money, and sin.

Just like I would I need to take the time and energy to study my country and its history, so they are now required to learn their faith in a new and energetic way to defend the faith and their children. The time for comfort is over. The time to study and learn is here. No longer can the Filipinos—or anyone who has been born and raised Catholic—sit back and take the faith for granted. It is time for war! It is time for defense! It is time to get to work!

I do not criticize “cradle Catholics” for not knowing their faith. I understand the situation. But now we must begin rigorous study and learning—our children and our faith are at stake. We have no time to to waste. We are called to re-evangelize and defend Mother Church! God bless us all as we serve Our Lord.

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My Talk at Primacy of Peter: Understanding John 21 and Jesus’ Appearance at the Sea of Galilee

April 2, 2016

Since we are at the Primacy of St. Peter today along the shore of Galilee, I thought I would share my teaching that I give all our pilgrims at this site. It is an explanation of St. John 21 where Jesus appoints Peter to be the shepherd of his sheep. But there is much more [...]

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Is the Catholic Faith Anti-Woman? Five Reasons the Catholic Church is the Most PRO-WOMAN Institution in History

April 1, 2016

COMMENTARY: One doesn’t have to look far to see that the term ‘war on women’ doesn’t apply. In fact, it’s quite the opposite! by ARINA O. GROSSU  Anyone who claims that the Catholic Church is anti-woman knows little about her rich history and Tradition in proclaiming the beauty and greatness of womanhood. There is no [...]

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How We REALLY Got the Bible – the Facts Simply Presented (print this out, hand it out)

March 31, 2016

This is just one page of Bob Sullivan’s excellent little tri-fold handout to explain how we got the Bible. It is from the Catholic and historical perspective without all the Protestant biases and twisting of history. I think you enjoy the whole thing which you can see here. You can print this out, fold it [...]

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How Long Was Jesus in the Tomb? Another Contradiction?

March 26, 2016

“For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the sea monster, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matt. 12:38-40) Skeptics claim to have discovered an error in the New Testament —claiming Jesus was not in the tomb [...]

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Was Jesus Crucified Naked?

March 25, 2016

A gentleman heard me on Relevant Radio earlier. I had mentioned on the air that one of the great humiliations of a crucifixion was that a man was crucified naked. This thoughtful gentleman wrote to challenge my comments. Below is his e-mail and my response. Dear Mr. Ray, Please correct your description of the Passion. [...]

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Steve Ray on EWTN’s Journey Home this Week

February 2, 2016

              Join Steve Ray and Marcus Grodi this week as Steve returns for the 7th time to discuss his conversion to the Catholic Church. Video now on-line at http://www.ewtn.com/tv/live/journeyhome.asp 

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A Quick Reply to Question about Cremation and Scattering the Ashes

January 29, 2016

I was asked a question about Catholics, cremation and the scattering of ash. Here is my brief answer: The whole issue of cremation goes back to the Romans. They denied the bodily resurrection so they often burned the body and if they were rich they put the ashes in urns and put them in the [...]

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Welcoming New People at Mass this Christmas – They May Be an Answer to Someone’s Prayers

December 15, 2015

We get busy on during the Christmas Season. We don’t have a lot of respect for people who go to church only on Christmas and Easter. We may be irritated that seats are taken and the church is noisy.  But, you are praying for your family and friends to come back to church and MAYBE [...]

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“Life is about the Journey, not the Destination!” Huh?!

November 15, 2015

“Life is all about the Journey, not the Destination!” (paraphrase of a quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson.) I saw this sign at the airport recently. Imagine! In an airport of all places! What stupidity! Grab a passenger arriving at the airport to catch a flight and shout, “Hey, take any flight you want sir, it [...]

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Was He Ready to Die?

October 28, 2015

It was just a normal morning — alarm clock, shower, espresso, dress and a saunter down the sidewalk to work. For Paul is was another day with a whole lifetime ahead of him. But today was different. Someone else got up this morning too. They had their coffee dressed and jumped in the car. They [...]

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Salvation by Faith Alone?

July 30, 2015

Since the days of Martin Luther it has been popular to reduce salvation to a sound bite. Salvation is not by works but by “faith alone.” However, the Bible seems to have another idea. In my book CROSSING THE TIBER I mention a few passages from Scripture to give a more biblical perspective. Here is [...]

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The Rainbow: What Is It? What Does it Symbolize? How Has it Been Co-opted and Perverted?

July 9, 2015

I was excited about my appearance today on the Drew Mariani Show on Relevant Radio. We  discussed the RAINBOW – what it is physically, what it symbolizes, it’s biblical use and it’s perversion by modern less-than-savory groups. I have had a great time researching this today and was anxious to share my findings, musings, and [...]

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Was Jesus Nice?

July 5, 2015

I wish I had a dollar for every time someone has said to me. “That was not very Christ-like.” This response usually comes after being honest to the point of making someone upset.  The implication is that Jesus was a cuddly little nice guy who was always smiling, always accepting with kind words – in [...]

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