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Mike Hayes :
261 article(s)

Mike Hayes is the senior editor for the Googling God section at BustedHalo.com.
December 1st, 2009

The letters refer to the different “orders” that the priest or sister belong to.   For example:
Fr James Martin, S.J. :   S.J. stands for Society of Jesus which is the formal name for the Jesuits.  So Fr Jim would be a Jesuit priest.
Fr David Dwyer, C.S.P.:  C.S.P. stands for Community of St Paul which is the formal name for the Paulists.  So Fr Dave is a Paulist Father.
Sr. Christine Wilcox, O.P.:  O.P. stands for Order of Preachers which is the formal name of the Dominicans.   So Sr. Christine is a Dominican Sister.
As you can see sometimes the letters stand for what the order’s charism is as it does for the Dominicans who have a central mission regarding preaching.
Now I know what…

November 26th, 2009

The two most popular Catholic prayers that surround food traditions are the simple “Grace Before Meals” and “Grace After Meals.”
One need not pray these prayers on Thanksgiving if you are Catholic, prayers from your own words are, of course, fine.
However, if you are looking for more structure in your prayer these two simple ones work well.
Grace Before Meals
Bless us O Lord and these thy gifts which we are about to receive from thy bounty, through Christ Our Lord.  Amen.
Grace After Meals…
We give Thee thanks, Almighty God, for all thy benefits, Who livest and reignest, world without end. Amen.
While Grace After Meals is seldom ever prayed it indeed does express Thanksgiving.  The

November 25th, 2009

Question: I was just wondering why does there seem to be a definite split between different religious orders (Franciscan, Jesuit, Benedictine, ect)?  I know that each was founded by different people of faith with different emphasizes.  I guess my question is why does there seem to be some negativeness between certain orders?  Is there a negative history between certain orders or is it like college rivalries, where you, for example, don’t like Purdue just because you root for Indiana University?…
You are correct in stating that there are wide differences between religious orders and sometimes these differences even cause splits WITHIN religious communities.  Just look at all the

November 18th, 2009

My question: My Spiritual Director says that if I am in touch with Jesus and keep a regular and good relationship with Him (through personal prayer, Word of God, mass etc), I can receive all I need from Him i.e. all my needs can be satisfied from Him. However, I personally feel that there are some things that I cannot receive from Him. For example, sometimes when I pray, I dont get the comfort that I would have got if I had spent that time with a friend. Many times I feel the need for a hug or a touch. If I pray at that time, it doesn’t satisfy as much as getting a real hug. Is this because the ‘quality’ of my prayer hasn’t reached that level OR is it because some needs just have to be fulfilled from other humans…

October 23rd, 2009

Since you’ve only known this girl a few months I would be very cautious about jumping into marriage too quickly. It’s the number one reason that annulments and divorces happen. Let’s put that out there first of all.
I think you need to explore the reasons as to why you have cold feet. It also sounds to me like perhaps people are pressuring you to get married –which is never a good reason to get married. I might suggest talking with a counselor or a priest that you trust about this.
Marriage is a sacramental partnership and it is never a 50-50 partnership. Rather it is a 100%-100% partnership where each person totally gives themselves to one another and grows in love. You needn’t be the “Head…

October 3rd, 2009
Making my peace with the blessing of the animals

If you’ve ever seen dog owners walking to church with their pooches in ridiculous outfits, sprayed with doggie perfume and a bow in their fur you’ve stumbled upon the annual “blessing of the animals” on the Feast Day of St Francis, October 4. In years past I witnessed one woman’s dog in a top hat and tails. Another dressed in a doggy business suit. A third looked like a clown (both dog and master).
I couldn’t help but laugh to myself when I overheard conversations in the pews about how smart their silly mutt was and how much love they received coming home to the wagging tail that greeted them at the door. Owners shared recipes about what they cook for their pets, talked about what…

September 19th, 2009

There are a few. BustedHalo.com is a sub-division of a larger ministry outreach called Paulist Young Adult Ministries, a national ministry for young adults. If you check out our Church Search and Events sections (under faith guides) you should find some good places to go.
Secondly, NCYAMA is the National Catholic Young Adult Ministry Association and we work very closely with them. In fact, I’m the President of the board of directors. Check them out at www.ncyama.org or by calling 1-888-ncyama1.
Mike Hayes is the Senior Editor for Googling God…

September 13th, 2009

The answer, simply put, is “yes,” but it is also not merely up to the priest to decide.  If by your question you mean that the priest sits before the eucharist is reserved by the deacon to the tabernacle than yes, that is OK.  There is no prescription that states that he cannot sit and the faithful also do not have to take their lead from him. They can remain kneeling even while he is sitting.
If you are saying that the priest simply left the Eucharist on the altar and didn’t return it to the tabernacle before mass finished, than that is actually against the rubrics.
However, it doesn’t sound like that is your question:
Cardinal Arinze who is the prefect for worship at the Holy See stated that…

September 2nd, 2009

A bishop is a priest who receives “the fullness of the sacrament of Holy Orders” (CCC, 1557) and is the visible head of a particular local church. Their first task is to be a teacher of the faith, “preaching the gospel to all” (CCC, 888). Bishops are also “sanctifiers,” meaning they are the ones who ordain other men to the priesthood.
Bishops stem from the first Apostles. Christ chose the Apostles to be the people who would spread the gospel to all nations. They acted together as a body or a “college,” but they also spread out to preach the good news to local areas. Bishops have succeeded these original disciples and have a presence as the rulers of the Church in local…

August 29th, 2009

Your question is an interesting one and one we’ve talked about before.  While you have good intentions in trying to keep your Sunday obligation to God by listening to the podcast of mass, you’re missing one of the main elements that we have at mass which is the community.
Mass is not just about our own relationship between God and oursleves but also it’s about our relationship to the community that we live in as well–it’s about coming together as a community and praying with one another.  We remember that not one of the disciples shared the last supper with Jesus alone, rather they ate the first Eucharist together.
So the question here is not merely about punching your mass attendance…

August 27th, 2009

Dreams are simply manifestations of one’s UNCONSCIOUS mind.  For sin to be considered sin we have to CONSCIOUSLY choose them.  So no, your sin in your dream is not something you need to confess.
However…(there’s always a however) you may be pushing down some of your innate desires and they are manifesting themselves in your dreams.  Dreams indeed do tell us a bit about ourselves and what we truly wish we could do, or perhaps they invent solutions to things that are troubling us that we work out in our subconscious.
So as an example, if we dream about having a liaison with someone we’re not married to, we might want to address what our dream is telling us and to try to have more chaste…

August 22nd, 2009

Burying the statue of St Joseph in your backyard offers no guarantee of the house actually being sold.  What it does offer is that St Joseph will pray for a successful sale of your home.
That sale may just take some time.  Perhaps he is looking for the right buyer, or the right time, or when the economy is better?  Who knows?  But suffice it to say that burying the second statue certainly can’t hurt your chances of it being sold–nor is it something that you shouldn’t do.  Burying the statue upside down is simply an old ritual that people developed themselves and that some have found success with.  But it’s not a magical formula that guarantees a sale–that would mean…

August 17th, 2009

While Baptism is the first sacrament of initiation, confirmation imparts what the name implies: it “confirms” baptismal promises and calls believers into living a bolder faith. “Confirmation brings an increase and deepening of baptismal grace” (CCC, 1300) and calls upon the Holy Spirit to impart the gifts that the spirit offers.
“Although Confirmation is sometimes called the “sacrament of Christian maturity,” we must not confuse adult faith with the adult age of natural growth (CCC, 1308). God imparts grace on us to make us bolder, despite our age or intellect.
The essential rite… of the sacrament is conferred through anointing with chrism on the forehead and the words: “Be sealed

August 15th, 2009

Since Jesus has both divine and human natures the church has taught that Jesus is both “Son of God” and “Son of Mary.”  Your question as to how this could be was one that also puzzled Mary as she asks “How can this be since I do not know man?” (Luke 1:34)
The angel’s response tells us a bit of what an answer to your question could be:  ”The holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God.” (Lk 1:35)
However, you have asked a more biological question in which the Catechism of the Catholic Church helps to clarify:

485 The mission of the Holy Spirit is always conjoined…

August 10th, 2009

Catholics believe that Jesus rose from the dead after being crucified, that this is a real event in history and has been verified by sacred scripture. Later, St. Paul would also write about the Resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:3-4)
However, Resurrection does not mean only the resuscitation of a dead human body back to its previous form, but, rather, as the Catechism tells us:
Christ’s Resurrection is essentially different. In his risen body he passes from the state of death to another life beyond time and space. (CCC 645-46).

In short, this Jesus is the same Jesus, but he looks different to the disciples.  Nobody was a witness to how Jesus came into this new way of real life, so we know not how this happens…

August 1st, 2009

Every diocese has an exorcist on staff.  You can feel free to call your local diocese and ask for the exorcist’s office.  You can explain the situation to him and then he can conduct an investigation to see if there is anything to your claim with regard to demonic possession. There is an excellent book that you can read called “The Rite” about an exorcist who gets trained in Rome and how he came to learn much about the process of exorcism.
With regards to your question though about people playing with witchcraft, etc…that indeed could have opened up the possibility of demonic entry–however it is fairly rare that a demon would stay around a house rather than stay with the people who…

May 22nd, 2009
...that won't require a bailout

The unofficial start of summer usually begins with barbecues, a long weekend away, visiting relatives, or heading to a beach town to visit your summer share cottage. Whatever your choice has been in the past, this year’s dreadful economy is bound to make at least some, if not most, of us reevaluate our summer vacation plans.
Even if financial concerns aren’t causing you to take a second look at vacation plans, you may be tired of the same old, same old. So Busted Halo decided to take a look at 5 possible vacations — ranging from lavish steals for the budget conscious, to family friendly activities, to serving those in need.

Volunteer Vacations
Want to experience a new culture at a low cost and simultaneously…

April 19th, 2009

Catholics believe that Mary, the mother of Jesus, became pregnant not through a sexual encounter with a man, but by the power of the Holy Spirit. Joseph was betrothed to a woman who was pregnant and he knew he was not the father. He was troubled. God spoke to Joseph in a dream telling him, “that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.” (Matthew 1:20)
Many people, when they encounter this piece of Catholic tradition, have doubts that it could happen. Some even point to other pagan gods being born of virgins and suggest the possibility that Catholicism borrowed from these legends — especially since there is no mention of Mary’s virginity in Mark’s Gospel, the oldest of the four gospels.…

April 9th, 2009
The challenge of Good Friday

I love rocking chairs. Whenever I go on retreat, as I did last week, I hope that they have a rocking chair at the retreat house. Generally, when I am rocking away I do not have a care in the world. But during my recent retreat my soothing rocking chair experience was ruined when I began contemplating Good Friday.
Quite frankly, I hate Good Friday. It’s dreary and dark. There’s the cross and the blood and the whipping and the people calling for Jesus to die. There’s the lance through Jesus’ side and the falling on the road and the Pietà, where Jesus’ body is handed over to his mother, Mary — what torture for any mother to see her son like that!
No, Good Friday is not a comfortable…

March 15th, 2009
Going green never felt so good

As the son of an Irish immigrant, I always found it odd that my American mother looked forward to the big holiday more than my Irish father did.
“St. Patrick’s Day is a big deal now … in Ireland,” he told me on the phone recently, “but it never used to be anything to write home about in the old days. It was mostly a religious holiday and we treated it as a solemn day, as opposed to a day to get snockered.”
Now I don’t begrudge anyone a nice pint o’ Guinness, but shouldn’t St. Patrick’s Day be about more than simply getting drunk in a random pub? Instead of heading to some insanely crowded bar why not have a few friends over for one or more of the following Irish cultural

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