Into the Breach: An Exhortation to Catholic Men

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Bishop Thomas Olmsted of the diocese of Phoenix recently wrote a letter to men encouraging them in the battle that is raging around us.

It is an outstanding piece and well worth your time.

Click HERE for the PDF version of the letter

We would like to encourage you to print, forward and/or share this with all of the men of your diocese, school, parish, team, staff, class, etc.

It would make an outstanding subject of a team or class project to read and discuss (high school or older).

Here below is the video trailer for the letter and then the main articles addressed in it.

May God bless you.

Virtue = Strength, Lou Judd 

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Click on the image to watch video


A Call to Battle

In this Exhortation, I will address three primary questions:

1. What does it mean to be a Christian man?
2. How does a Catholic man love?
3. Why is fatherhood, fully understood, so crucial for every man?

Before addressing these three basic questions, it is important to put them into proper context. In the following section, I will explain three important contexts that help us understand the main questions.

Context #1: A New Apostolic Moment – The “New Evangelization”

Context #2: A Field Hospital and a Battle College

Context #3: Man and Woman are Complementary, not Competitors

Question 1: What does it mean to be a Catholic Man?

▪ Saints, our Heroes of Faith
▪ The Catholic Man’s Identity
▪ Beloved and Free Sons, Called to the Battle Within
▪ The Practices of a Committed Catholic Man

While there are many habits and devotions that a Catholic man can form, I charge you with keeping these seven basic practices on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. If these practices are not (yet) part of your life, start now!

* Pray every day. 
* Examine your conscience before going to sleep. 
* Go to Mass. 
* Read the Bible. 
* Keep the Sabbath.

* Go to Confession. 
* Build fraternity with other Catholic men.

Question 2: How does a Catholic man love?

Three Masculine Loves: Friend, Husband, Father

▪ A Friend in Christ – Bands of Brothers
▪ Man as Husband – the Purpose of Masculine Erotic Love
▪ Fatherhood is Essential
▪ Grandfathers, You Are of Great Importance
▪ Hope in the Shadows of Lost Fatherhood

Conclusion: Sent Forth by Christ

▪ Where is the Faith of our Fathers now?

The Catholic martyrs of England inspired Frederick W. Faber to write the hymn “Faith of our Fathers” in AD 1849. As Faber paid tribute to the men who refused to deny Christ “in spite of dungeon, fire, and sword,” he also issued a call to arms for the men of succeeding generations. Join me in praying that we, men of the 21st century, will make the words of this verse our own:

“Our Fathers, chained in prisons dark, Were still in heart and conscience free: How sweet would be their children’s fate, If they, like them, could die for Thee! Faith of our Fathers! Holy Faith! 
We will be true to thee till death.”

Promulgated on the Feast of the Archangels, September 29, 2015 
+Thomas J. Olmsted Bishop of Phoenix