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faith journey with my son

in topic "Other"
A Xt3 Member asked at 6:27am on June 7th 2017
Blessings to you Father. My son and I who are both cradle catholics are beginning to really connect after 10 years of being separated and very recently he told me he attended bible study. I am a devout catholic and engaged in the prophetic ministry of our faith community, Family Cenacle Groups is the name of our group here in Sydney Australia. I have prayed really hard for my children x 4 to renew their faith journey especially my youngest son Jared who is now 24 yoa because at some stage he stopped believing in GOD. Father somehow our community isn't youth based which is quite sad.. and I really would like Jared to develop his interest to renew his faith. While this is a grace God could only provide, I would like to present him with options: in fact I sent him information on WYD - as he loves travelling and that would be a vehicle.. In Australia is there a youth group that he maybe able to join? I also sent him xt3 link so he can access news about the roman catholic church as I really find xt3 very very helpful!

Any suggestions father would be greatly appreciated. By the way he hasnt received the sacrament of Confirmation - should I just contact our parish in that regard?

Good health and prayers!

Terri Tiojanco

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Hi Terri,

There are a number of groups around Sydney for young adults that your son could be a part of.

The team at the Youth & Youth Adults Office of the Sydney Archdiocese could also connect him with more groups -- You can message them on Facebook -

Yes, your parish priest can help you and your son with regard to arranging the process toward the Sacrament of Confirmation.

Very best, Fr Brendan
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Brown Scapular Queries

in topic "Other"
A Xt3 Member asked at 10:16am on June 15th 2017
Dear Father,

I was recently enrolled in the Brown Scapular and read somewhere that you should even wear it in the shower, so that is what I have been doing. The only thing that concerns me is this: the image on the front has started to break up and disintegrate, leaving small pieces everywhere including on myself, which I have just been washing down the drain or disposing of. My question is: have I been committing a serious sacrilege/sin by doing this? It never occurred to me until recently so I thought I should just make sure.


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Hi Alexander, whenever you come across advice that obviously goes against common sense, you're well advised to ignore it. Sounds to me like you should get a new, undamaged scapular, and never wear it in the shower. While I don't wear a scapular, I have a cross on a chain that I always wear, but I remove it when I go to bed and put it on again after I've washed myself in the morning. You haven't committed any sin whatever: the scapular, while a blessed object, or what's called a sacramental, isn't remotely sacred in the sense that the Blessed Eucharist is. Very best, Fr Brendan
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in topic "Theology"
A Xt3 Member asked at 3:05pm on May 31st 2017

Are all catechisms valid?

For example:


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Hi Anna, all officially approved Catechisms are surely valid (which would exclude, for example, the Dutch Catechism of 1966, which had certain areas that were not considered to be in line with the Church's teaching). So the Baltimore Catechism, first published in 1885, is fine. But why not use the Catechism of the Catholic Church first issued in 1992 and easily available online? It's more up to date with all the Church's teaching since 1885, and there are various shorter, summary versions of it too. Very best, Fr Brendan
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this is a strange question

in topic "Other"
A Xt3 Member asked at 4:01pm on May 30th 2017
What would you tell someone who is convinced that our family is cursed? Who then gets two priest on board with this. I will try to give you some background in short. Our family has always had some sensitivity so to speak. Thoughts on that would also be appreciated. I don't know where to start.... My older sister has had a very hard time, I believe it is the choices she has made she blames everything on some unseen entity. I am not discounting everything that has happened but I believe GOD has the wheel so to speak and that is that. Do you think people who are sensitives or mediums are given these gifts from God or the devil? I believe it is how these people use them that makes it one way or the other. I am so confused and I am sure this whole thing that I have written is confusing. Help the best you can, please.

Thank you

God bless


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Hi Paula, the Church has always warned the faithful from spiritualism of any kind - with the story of the witch of Endor (1 Sam 28: 3-25) - indicating that such attempts can be dangerous. So that I'd strongly advise against any attempts at using the kind of gifts (such as those of mediums) that you mention some of your family have. The basic reason is that you can never be sure you're not in contact with evil spirits, and such contact can unleash their action in ways we can't control. Obviously I've no way of knowing if your family has been cursed, and it'd be good to speak with your local clergy about this, since the service of the diocesan exorcist may need to be called on (only the diocesan exorcist, authorised by the bishop, is permitted to perform a full exorcism, but the local clergy can of course always pray for your family, using the prayers of minor exorcism).

But you're so right - as you put it, 'God has the wheel,' God is in control of all his creatures, and no matter what's happened to your sister in the past, or what choices she's made, His mercy is without limits, always ready to help us start again. Keeping you all in my prayers, Fr Brendan
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Priests with Children

in topic "Sacraments"
A Xt3 Member asked at 3:20pm on May 28th 2017
Is it possible to get ordained if you have a child .? The situation being that you aren't living with the mother of the child ...

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Hi Ines, that's a decision that the local bishop or head of a religious congregation would have to make, having interviewed the candidate. Pope Francis has said several times, regarding not candidates for the priesthood, but priests who have broken their vows and fathered a child, that they should leave the priesthood, since now as fathers of that child, they have responsibility for its upbringing. And even if the person you mention isn't living with the mother of his child, he's still that child's father, who'll need him around for many years, closely present in that child's life. So it mightn't at all be a good idea for such a man to become a priest. Very best, Fr Brendan
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Pope Francis

in topic "Other"
A Xt3 Member asked at 1:48pm on May 30th 2017
Dear Father,

I am inspired to connect with Pope Francis. How is it possible? via email? Letter?

Thank you.

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Hi Sarah,

Our Holy Father is a popular man! An as many people want to get in contact with him, it can be quite difficult. Attending one of his general audiences in Rome is one sure way. Read this article from Rome Reports for more tips:

God bless,

Xt3 Ask A Priest Moderator
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in topic "Other"
A Xt3 Member asked at 6:02am on May 25th 2017
Hi Father

I am trying to follow the DIVINE MERCY way. In one of the handouts is a paragtaph which , while it is not worrying me, i would like your opinion.


My daughter, try your best to make the Stations of the Cross in this hour, if your duties permit it, and if you are not able to make tjhe Stations of the Cross , then at least step into the Chapel for a moment and adore, in the Most Blessed Sacrament, My Heart, which is full of Mercy, and should you not be able to step into the Chapel,immerse yourself in prayer there, where you happen to be, if only for a very brief instant

Could you agree with me that this appears to be a request for the Stations to be of major importance and we should try to make this the prime part of our visits to the Divine Mercy Chapel

Thanks for your time



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Hi Frank, unfortunately, I'm not familiar with the Divine Mercy devotions, but I'd be inclined to say that all devotions allow a lot of freedom to whoever practises them. Some times, a soul might be more helped by quiet prayer before the Blessed Sacrament, while at another time, the Stations of the Cross might be what I feel the need for most. And that beautiful advice at the end of your quotation (I presume from St Faustina), about immersing yourself in prayer for an instant, in a way includes everything--prayer while waiting for a bus or train, in the midst of our daily work, or before Jesus in the Eucharist or while doing the Stations -- that's really St Paul's advice, 'to pray always' -- each moment of our lives can become a prayer. Gandhi said that the soul needs prayer like the body needs food, and for Christians, our prayer is always to be Jesus, to be Mary, with every breath we take, in and through whatever we're doing, including whatever particular devotion we're practising. Very best, Fr Brendan
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full knowledge

in topic "Theology"
A Xt3 Member asked at 1:22pm on May 25th 2017
Shalom.i have a question.What does the term "full knowledge" mean? Does full knowledge mean one has to have the most knowledge about sins (like most knowledge of why watching pornography is a sin)?

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Hi Christopher, we say that the requirements for our being responsible for any action, means that we must know what we're doing and choose to do it. So 'full knowledge' means just an ordinary awareness of what we're doing, not at all some kind of scientifically validated knowledge. Say I'm a truck driver or airline pilot, whatever, it's not rocket science for me to know that if I've been drinking, I shouldn't get behind the wheel or into the cockpit. Maybe I can take a small beer or single glass of wine (everyone has different capacities), but it's a professional requirement for me to know I can't go even one drop over the minimum allowed by law.

Regarding pornography, a friend of mine gave me the example of a 'cyanide sandwich' -- all you need is a tiny dot of cyanide in an otherwise normal sandwich to kill you . In areas to do with sexuality, the only way to deal with pornography is zero tolerance, never to allow even the slightest image that could be an occasion of sin. Because if the devil spots that I'm lowering my guard (a bit like an opposing team can spot if a guy on the other side is scared of being tackled, they'll fall on him like a ton of bricks), he'll let me compromise a little here and a little there, and like St Peter warns, he's going about like a lion looking for someone to devour. Then he pounces on me because I haven't refused to compromise in the least. Very best, Fr Brendan
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in topic "Other"
A Xt3 Member asked at 8:43pm on May 25th 2017
Father I am not an active catholic when it comes to religious duties. I seldom say thank you to the Lord. I also do not ask sorry for my sins. How am I supposed to pray or ask anything from the Lord? How can I be accepted? How can I be forgiven? If I pray and ask a lot from God now that I am sick and bedridden will God believe me?

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Hi Jermaine, first of all, I'm so sorry to hear you're sick and bedridden -- I've found my own experiences of being ill and hospitalized were times when I felt closest to Jesus -- on my back in University of Chicago hospital after breaking my leg and in a bit of pain, I looked up at all those white tiles in the ceiling and saw each cross where they met as an invitation from him to share in his sufferings.

These last few days, I was reading about Flannery O'Connor, Catholic writer from Georgia, how she turned her daily diminishment from lupus into a deeper meeting with him, especially in her writing. So be sure that trying to live each moment 'for you (Jesus)' you're meeting him and living him. When we're really sick, we can't even 'offer,' just 'suffer' for him.

And your beautiful desire to repent is already your repentance! If you're not well enough to go to church to receive the sacrament of confession/reconciliation, why not ask your local clergy to come to you -- and administer the Sacrament of the Sick and the Eucharist as well?

St Therese of Lisieux said she preferred the 'saints of the 11th hour' -- the ones who snuck in at the end. That was because Jesus preferred them too -- as he said to St Mary Magdalene, it's those who have been forgiven the most are the ones who love the most. And keep reminding yourself of those encouraging words of Jesus, 'come to me all you who labour and are burdened, and I will give you rest.' Only one who is God can speak like that, say 'all' like that, meaning every single human being, and of course you and me too. Very best, fr Brendan
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same sex marriage

A Xt3 Member asked at 6:06pm on May 24th 2017
Is it wrong to attend the wedding of a family member who is gay? If so, what do you tell your young children who love thier uncle? We are Catholic and our children are being raised Catholic, but their father wasn't raised catholic, but has converted a few years ago, and thier uncle and the rest of the in-laws aren't Catholic.

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Hi Joan,

Thank you for your question. You will find an answer from previously submitted questions on the topic here:

1. Attending a Same-Sex Wedding

2. Attending a Marriage of People of the Same-Sex

We will keep you, your children and your family in our prayers.

God bless, Ask a Priest Moderator
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