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About Fr. John Bartunek, LC

Fr. John Bartunek, LC, S.Th.D, received his BA in History from Stanford University in 1990. He comes from an evangelical Christian background and became a member of the Catholic Church in 1991. After college, he worked as a high school history teacher, drama director, and baseball coach. He then spent a year as a professional actor in Chicago before entering the religious Congregation of the Legionaries of Christ in 1993. He was ordained a Catholic priest in 2003 and earned his doctorate in moral theology in 2010. He provided spiritual support on the set of Mel Gibson’s "The Passion of the Christ" while researching the 2005 Catholic best seller, "Inside the Passion"--the only authorized, behind-the-scene explanation of the film. Fr. John has contributed news commentary regarding religious issues on NBC, CNN, Fox, and the BBC. He also served as the English-language press liaison for the Vatican’s 2005 Synod of Bishops on the Eucharist. His most widely known book is called: "The Better Part: A Christ-Centered Resource for Personal Prayer". His most recent books are "Spring Meditations", "Seeking First the Kingdom: 30 Meditations on How to Love God with All Your Heart, Soul, Mind and Strength", and "Answers: Catholic Advice for Your Spiritual Questions". Fr. John currently splits his time between Michigan (where he continues his writing apostolate and serves as a confessor and spiritual director at the Queen of the Family Retreat Center) and Rome, where he teaches theology at Regina Apostolorum. His online, do-it-yourself retreats are available at RCSpirituality.org, and he answers questions about the spiritual life at SpiritualDirection.com.

43. Qualities of the Kingdom (Matthew 13:24-43)

July 19, 2017 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“In prayer I always find light and strength of spirit although there are moments so trying and hurtful, that it is sometimes difficult to imagine that these things can happen in a convent. Strangely, God sometimes allows them, but always in order to manifest or develop virtue in a soul. That is the reason for trials.” – St. Faustina Kowalska Matthew 13:24-43: He put another parable before... Read More

A Virgin’s Courage: A Retreat Guide on St Kateri Tekakwitha

July 14, 2017 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditation, Resources, Retreat Guides

A Virgin’s Courage: A Retreat Guide on St. Kateri Tekakwitha (for today’s Memorial of St. Kateri Tekakwitha) During his last homily at his last World Youth Day, St. John Paul II spoke to almost one million young people gathered in the outskirts of Toronto, Canada about courage, about not being afraid to take a stand for Jesus Christ. In doing so, he invoked the example of the first Native... Read More

42. Seeking a Fertile Heart (Matthew 13:1-23)

July 12, 2017 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“While the Lord was calling me, all the world’s pleasures stood nearby. As though holding deliberations with a friend, my mind pondered what course to take, which to abandon. Thanks be to you, good Jesus, who, moved by the holy entreaties of your servant, broke my bonds and cast upon me the bonds of your love.” – St. Hilary of Arles Matthew 13:1-23: That same day, Jesus left the house and... Read More

37. A Flash of Joy (Matthew 11:25-30)

July 5, 2017 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“This Spirit, the dispenser of the treasures that are in the Father and keeper of the counsels that are between the Father and the Son, pours himself so sweetly into the soul that he is not perceived, and his greatness is understood by few.” – St. Mary Magdalene of Pazzi Matthew 11:25-30: At that time Jesus exclaimed, ‘I bless you, Father, Lord of heaven and of earth, for hiding these things... Read More

The Mystery of Eternal Love: A Retreat Guide on the Blessed Trinity

June 10, 2017 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Retreat Guides, Trinity

 The Mystery of Eternal Love: A Retreat Guide on the Blessed Trinity According to Pope Benedict XVI, as human beings, we have imprinted upon our spiritual DNA a profound mark of the Trinity, of God as Love, for we are created in the image and likeness of God, and, as the First Letter of John puts it, “God is love.” But who is this God in whose image we’re created? What difference does it make... Read More

Why are Saints Sometimes Pictured with Skulls?

Why are saints sometimes pictured with skulls?   Does that mean they are preoccupied with death? There sure seems to be an awful lot of that in old art. God bless you and your ministry. Yes, indeed, skulls make frequent appearances in Christian art, even today. I can understand your question about this practice; because, putting skulls everywhere can seem kind of morbid – especially... Read More

Why are Peacocks Considered Symbols of the Resurrection?

April 24, 2017 by  
Filed under Easter, Eternity, Fr. Bartunek, Resurrection

Why are Peacocks Considered Symbols of the Resurrection? Dear Father John, I was looking around the SpiritualDirection.com site and found a post from back in 2014 (Why are Holy Water Fonts at Church Doors? Why Bless Ourselves with Holy Water) in which you said that peacocks are considered signs of the Resurrection. I never knew that. Why are peacocks thought of in that way? Is it the same for peahens?... Read More

What Does it Mean to be In Choir?

March 27, 2017 by  
Filed under Church, Fr. Bartunek, Liturgy

What Does it Mean to be In Choir?   Choir and Rood Screen in Albi Cathedral in France From time to time, in various spiritual writings and elsewhere, I’ve come across the term “choir” and it seems like it has nothing to do with music, which is what I associate it with. I think it might have something to do with Mass, perhaps where it is said?, but I’m not exactly sure what. Is it used... Read More

Demon Attacks

March 20, 2017 by  
Filed under Demonology, Fr. Bartunek, Spiritual Warfare, Temptation

Demon Attacks Spiritual Warfare and Demonology I was wondering if a demon that is attacking a family you have never met can attack said person mentally and physically? I have been having dreams of this horrible monster coming after me and my family for years. And yesterday I was watching this story about some family being hurt by this demon. From what they describe of it, it sounds like it could be... Read More

The Faithful Steward: A Lenten Retreat Guide on Saint Joseph

March 9, 2017 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Lent, Prayer, Retreat Guides

for post Lenten Retreat on Saint Joseph

The Faithful Steward: A Lenten Retreat Guide on Saint Joseph (A Retreat Guide from RCSpirituality.org)   He is the universal patron and protector of the Catholic Church. He is the traditional patron of a happy death, of fathers and of unborn children, of immigrants and workers, of home hunters and people facing doubt and hesitation, and of dozens of countries, regions, and cities across the world.... Read More

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