SpiritualDirection.com / Catholic Spiritual Direction

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.

Called and Chosen: A Retreat Guide on Vocation & the Calling of St. Matthew

September 20, 2018 by  
Filed under FEATURED, Fr. Bartunek, Retreat Guides, Vocations

Called and Chosen: A Retreat Guide on Vocation & the Calling of St. Matthew Editor's Note: Tomorrow is the feast of St. Matthew, Apostle and Evangelist. We can prepare for that by watching Fr. John Bartunek's retreat guide on vocation and the calling of St. Matthew, introduced to us in this post today. This guide is available as a video, audio, or as a PDF companion guide. Many people nowadays... Read More

123. Leaders Like Christ (Mark 9:30-37)

September 19, 2018 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“I desire to love you, O my God, with a love that is patient, with a love that abandons itself wholly to you, with a love that acts, and most important of all, with a love that perseveres.” – St. Theresa Margaret of the Sacred Heart Mark 9:30-37: After leaving that place they made their way through Galilee; and he did not want anyone to know, because he was instructing his disciples; he was... Read More

120. God’s Way (Mark 8:27-38)

September 12, 2018 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“Devotedly obey our mother, the Roman Church, and revere the Supreme Pontiff as your spiritual father.” – St. Louis Mark 8:27-38: Jesus and his disciples left for the villages round Caesarea Philippi. On the way he put this question to his disciples, ‘Who do people say I am?’ And they told him. ‘John the Baptist,’ they said ‘others Elijah; others again, one of the prophets.’ ‘But... Read More

117. The Touch of the Lord (Mark 7:31-37)

September 5, 2018 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“Oh, I praise that mercy of yours which is beyond praising and I adore in thanksgiving your most loving kindness from the depths of my nothingness.” – St. Gertrude Mark 7:31-37: Returning from the district of Tyre, he went by way of Sidon towards the Sea of Galilee, right through the Decapolis region. And they brought him a deaf man who had an impediment in his speech; and they asked him... Read More

115. Hard-Hearted Hypocrisy (Mark 7:1-23)

August 29, 2018 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“Be courageous; be not puffed up by prosperity nor cast down by adversity. Keep humble in this life so that God may exalt you in the next.”  – St. Stephen of Hungary Mark 7:1-23: The Pharisees and some of the scribes who had come from Jerusalem gathered round him, and they noticed that some of his disciples were eating with unclean hands, that is, without washing them. For the Pharisees,... Read More

259. Free to Stay or Go (John 6:60-71)

August 22, 2018 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“Do not, my child, approach Jesus Christ with the hope of bending his will to yours: what I desire is that you yield yourself to him and that he receive you, so that he, your Savior, may do with you and in you whatever he pleases.” – St. Cajetan John 6:60-71: After hearing it, many of his followers said, ‘This is intolerable language. How could anyone accept it?’ Jesus was aware that... Read More

258. Eating Right (John 6:52-59)

August 15, 2018 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“This sacrament is operative to produce both love and union with Christ. The greatest showing of love is to give oneself as food.” – St. Albert the Great John 6:52-59: Then the Jews started arguing with one another: ‘How can this man give us his flesh to eat?’ they said. Jesus replied: ‘I tell you most solemnly, if you do not eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you... Read More

257. Believing or Complaining (John 6:36-51)

August 8, 2018 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“He gave himself to be our food; unhappy is the one who is unaware of so great a gift.” – St. Cajetan John 6:36-51: ‘But, as I have told you, you can see me and still you do not believe. All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I shall not turn him away; because I have come from heaven, not to do my own will, but to do the will of the one who sent me. Now the... Read More

256. Working for Bread that Lasts (John 6:16-35)

August 1, 2018 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditations, The Better Part

“… In the same way we call Christ our bread, because he is the food of those who are members of his body.” – St. Cyprian John 6:16-35: That evening the disciples went down to the shore of the lake and got into a boat to make for Capernaum on the other side of the lake. It was getting dark by now and Jesus had still not rejoined them. The wind was strong, and the sea was getting rough. They... Read More

What to Tell a Priest in a Devotional Confession

How do you speak with a priest in Confession when you do a devotional confession and he says that you don't need to mention past sins as they are already forgiven? I assume that you mean by “devotional confession” going to confession even if you have no mortal sins on your conscience. Many spiritual writers will refer to that as “frequent confession,” since it is still a sacramental encounter,... Read More