Letters HomeThe Holy Owned and Operated Blog
Join us here for our weekly messages of hope, inspiration, and instruction. And the occasional grumble or two if Kristofer is in one of his moods!
You inspire us to continue and overcome by your own success and refusal to accept mediocrity in your faith journey. Thank you for taking us along for the ride!
Catechesis at Home.
At this time of pandemic, many Dioceses have ceased offering Faith Formation of any sort – from Pre-K to and through Adult. This series will continue to guide you in this wilderness as The Church seeks new ways to reach and form the faithful.
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Latest Letters to You, The Church: The Body of Christ.
Kind Justice can be summed up pretty easily in the Golden Rule.
How well do we practice it?
What can we do better?
How is Jesus’ sacrifice on the Cross connected to the Golden Rule?
When God forgives us out of love, He shows the ultimate kind justice.
Can we do similarly?
It’s Romper Room time at Holy Owned and Operated!
Who do you see?
After a list of names and a Laurie Anderson reference, Beth hits Kristofer with a topic out of the blue.
Kristofer answers right away, and condemns the rest of us – including him – but of course leaving out Beth.
But wait for the end to be sure.
We see everybody around us – especially at Mass and other Church functions – as good and better than us.
So, it is natural to wonder if we are good enough to be Catholic.
After making sure we aren’t having technical difficulties we jump right in: Am I good enough to be Catholic?
Jesus loves to teach in parables.
When we hear this week’s parable, we also get to hear Jesus explain it to the Apostles.
Let’s all learn how to become the good soil that allows the Word of God to grow and produce fruit!
Summer Catholicism does not make sense.
The Church is Universal, and Summer happens every year.
Why do we turn into summer Catholics when the kids get out of school?
So many seem to take the summer off, as if a change in schedule justifies a change in celebrating days of holy obligation.
We discuss this fun topic on a 95-degree day, and it is obvious the heat gets to us.
Delirium, goofiness, and straight-up ridonculousness ensue as we unwittingly realize it is our third anniversary for the podcast.
We’ve been doing this for three straight years, no interruption!
So, enjoy this fun twenty minutes of just craziness while actually giving great suggestions on how to keep our Catholic practices – and Faith! – during the summer while we are still relaxing.
And then there’s the cake.
If Jesus’ yoke is easy, why is life so hard?
This week, we explore that with a little help from Father Richard Simon – The reverend Know-It-All – and dig into the details of this passage that we hear three times this month (this is the second time).
So, it must be important!
We take a walk through the readings for this week’s Mass, focusing not on ourselves, but on Jesus’ yoke that others are carrying.
And we discover why ours is harder than it needs to be in the process.
Are there levels of love in how we love others?
Is how we love God different than how we should love one another?
Are caritas, agape, storge, filial, eros different levels?
In this episode, we talk about that, and how love is a many splendored thing – but does it have levels, or people who are subject to or should receive more or less love than others?
We discuss how our love reflects upon us and our relationship with God, and reveals how much we actually follow the Greatest Commandment.
What level of love do we give Jesus, who is my neighbor, and how do we love our enemies?
Big questions, and we give our meager answers…
This week we hear that in order to receive our reward, we must receive His apostles, Himself and His Father, His prophets, and righteous people. What does that look like today?
Invite someone in ministry over for dinner or lunch or just to hang out for a while. Thank them for their answer to God’s call to be an Apostle. Invite them to tell their vocation story.
Joy in obedience?
How’s that?! Come again?
As Beth explains in the beginning, it makes sense that a virtue begets a fruit of the Spirit.
Kristofer picks up the ball and goes big picture, explaining that doing what God says leads to joy.
But what about the suffering that comes about when obeying God?
Still = supreme joy!
From God to the world to the nations to us personally obeying God, we talk about the difference between joy and happiness and where all of this obedience applies.
Parents will find this useful to listen to with children of all ages.
This week’s readings are mostly prayers and answers.
“Lord, in your great love, answer me” (Psalm 69:14).
Think of how we pray and ask for God’s power to take away our fears and hardships.
Do we pray with confidence and praise?
Or pitiful pleading and anxiousness?
Let’s take a page from Scripture and pray with trust and confidence in God’s goodness and answers.
Our Favorite Scripture may seem a bit-self-serving, but this episode is actually the first one for us to offer you to directly participate in On The Road To Perfection!
Priming the pump with our individual favorite scripture passages, we end by encouraging you to send us your favorites, in a short video.
After an impromptu musical interlude, we each provide three of our favorite scripture verses.
We have lots of scripture passages we like, but we whittle it down so we stick to the twenty minutes.
Kristofer kicks it off with his favorite and most consequential verse: an obscure verse from Jeremiah…
Have you ever contemplated your baptismal priesthood?
What is it, from where does it come?
How does it make a difference in our lives?
And how is it different from the Ministerial Priesthood – those men who are ordained to the priesthood in the Sacrament of Holy Orders?
This week let’s dive into these questions as God calls each of us to the priesthood.
Why do we go on retreat?
Is it really just to get away from people we do not want to be around>
Elijah, Moses, Jesus – these guys went on retreat, so why not us?
In fact, they went on retreat more than once.
All the time, it seems!
We often say to ourselves we should go on retreat, which is a great indication that God is telling us that very thing.
In this episode, we talk about all that, from the Prodigal Son to the Apostles, “retreat” is everywhere in the Bible.
We break it down for you, giving you the reasons God is calling you to retreat, and the fortitude you need to put your foot down and do it.
And, we do all that while looking at flowers and singing songs.
You can skip that part…
Jesus Christ is real.
And He gave us the Eucharist so that we could be with Him physically, because He knows we, as human beings, need to feel His presence.
There is no better or real presence of Jesus Christ in our lives than receiving His Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity at Mass.
This week, we celebrate an entire Solemnity – the highest form of celebration in the Catholic faith – at Mass to give glory to God for this miracle of the real presence of Our Lord at every Mass.
Read and learn about it, and the special celebration that you just might see walking down Main Street this weekend!
The doctrine of Just War is a difficult thing to comprehend, let alone explain.
We all question every armed conflict, and support or decry it based on our own perceptions of the situation.
Is that right?
How does the Church view the conflict in Ukraine?
How does the Church view its own armed conflicts, and those warriors who fought and killed in the name of Jesus and Mother Church?
Where does following orders fall into this doctrine?
For more than 1600 years, The Church has reconciled turning the other cheek with a natural right to self-defense.
In this episode, we tackle the doctrine of Just War, giving the four tests as laid out in the Catechism, and attempt to share the idea in a way that can be shared with children to help them understand – which means Kristofer understands, too!
Each Liturgical Year on the Sunday after Pentecost, we celebrate the Feast of the Most Holy Trinity, also known as “Trinity Sunday”.
This lesson teaches why we celebrate this feast and the significance of it.
Indulgences are controversial because they are confusing, and confusing because they are controversial.
You got questions? We got answers…but not all of them!
But certainly, the big ones to help you understand indulgences, and even answer a few questions others might have.
In this episode, we tackle indulgences at the request of a listener.
After reading the request, we dive in, starting with Beth blindsiding Kristofer with the task of defining indulgences.
Then it becomes a journey of theology, Biblical studies, and an exploration of the Church’s command and responsibility received from Jesus Christ Himself.
We look at everything from the First Crusade to Purgatory to Confession, Divine Mercy to Suffering, and even rock throwing and Jimmy Carter!
On Pentecost Sunday two thousand years ago, the Apostles received an amazing gift – the Holy Spirit.
Jesus kept His promise and sent the Advocate and amazing works have been done ever since through Him.
How He works in our lives is just as important as how He worked in the lives of the Apostles.
And the gift and work is all connected to the Sacraments.
Faith and Reason do not conflict – in fact, they MUST co-mingle in and infuse our daily lives.
This week Beth and Kristofer discuss a topic on which they should be called experts.
For many years they have catechized us, adults, elementary, middle-school, high school, and college youth on this topic that some of the greatest minds have never been able to wrap their heads around.
Beth and Kristofer give us the Church’s response to Nietzsche, Hawking, Russell, and many other’s in their down-to-earth well-reasoned manner, that will help you declare and be confident in your reasoned and reasonable faith!
As Kristofer says, the resurrection happened.
It’s a reality LOTS of people saw.
It takes reason to explain it.
Faith and Reason go hand-in-hand, and this episode laser-focuses on that reality.