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The Busted Halo Question Box
Ask our spiritual experts virtually anything!
This is the place where you can ask all of those burning questions that you wouldn't dare ask in person. We will post questions here (using your byline only with permission); we guarantee an answer to everyone.

Have your own question? Then pitch it to us!

Caitlin Kennell Kim
Mary
Fr. Rick Malloy, SJ
General Questions
Fr. Tom Ryan, CSP
Ecumenical, Interfaith
Neela Kale
Culture, Moral Theology
Ann Naffziger, M.A., M.Div.
Bible
Mike Hayes
Swingman/Editor
 
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October 28th, 2015
The Church of Our Lady of Peace in New York. (CNS photo/Eduardo Munoz, Reuters)You won’t find a listing of the Holy Days of Obligation in the Bible because they aren’t there. They aren’t there because they weren’t instituted when the Bible was written and compiled. Like so many things in our Catholic tradition, the practice of celebrating…
October 23rd, 2015
Q: I was recently asked, what do I believe, does the Soul/Spirit actual dies when the body expires? I said no the Soul does not die. Am I right or wrong? Soul signifies the “spiritual principle in humanity.” Because the Greeks often emphasized that the soul needed to escape the body, we often have a tendency to “prefer” the soul to the…
October 20th, 2015
Question: Thinking of movies that focus on the “rapture,” how does the Catholic Church view this topic? Movie trailers make it look scary and violent. I have read the scriptures on this but often wondered about the Church’s view on how it would happen or how it is interpreted. Answer: The reference to a Christian “rapture” (meaning “the…
October 16th, 2015
No one made God. God always is, always has been, and always will be. Time itself is part of God’s creation, so there cannot be anything or anyone before God. Though posed innocently by children, this question challenges the most sophisticated philosophers and theologians. Humans are finite creatures, so bound by time that we cannot grasp the idea of something…
October 13th, 2015
People ascribed many different titles to Jesus in his lifetime with “Son of God” being chief among them. He never protested or corrected people when they called him this (see Matthew 14:33 and 26:63). On the other hand, although Jesus didn’t openly walk around Palestine with a megaphone claiming, “I am God — come follow me!” there were…
October 9th, 2015
Overcoming anger is no easy task, especially when one has been hurt. It is possible however. Our first task to understand is that anger is an emotion. Emotions are normal and not at all sinful. However, we cannot allow our emotions to rule our decisions. The evil one would like nothing more than for us to fall into what St. Ignatius of Loyola calls desolation–thinking…
October 6th, 2015
St. John Vianney Church in Lithia Springs, Georgia. (CNS photo/Michael Alexander, Georgia Bulletin)At the end of Matthew’s gospel, Jesus sends the disciples out to “make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19). This is the origin of the Church’s “trinitarian…
October 2nd, 2015
Question: What kind of father leaves his innocent children (Adam and Eve) in a place (Garden of Eden) with incredible dangers to them (tree of knowledge of good and evil, serpent, etc.) and only a warning to “protect” them? After the mistake (eating of the tree, disobeying God), they are cast out of the garden. A real father with real children knows
September 9th, 2015
The earliest surviving New Testament written in Palestinian Aramaic, a language similar to what Jesus used. Question: I know the New Testament was written in Greek. However I have been told that there were a few verses from Jesus in Aramaic. Are you able to share with me exactly what verses in the New Testament are Aramaic? Answer: You are correct. The New Testament…
August 21st, 2015
Question: My dorm does not allow candles but I like to pray with a candle in front of my statue of Mary. Should I claim religious exemption? Candles have a time-honored place as a symbol of prayer, especially in the Catholic tradition. In fact, at least two candles must be placed on the altar for the celebration of the Mass (General Instruction of the Roman Missal,…
August 7th, 2015
What is a sign (from God)? What “signs” might appear to us today, and how is God still speaking? There are many events, supernatural or otherwise, that happen in the Bible, which can loosely be termed “signs from God.” Some appear in dreams, like the image of Jacob’s ladder (Genesis 28:11-22). Others happen during waking hours,…
July 31st, 2015
Imagine a timeline stretching back millions of years. Scientists believe that dinosaurs became extinct about 66 million years ago, tens of millions of years before humans evolved from our primate predecessors. Fast forward to the centuries when the books in the Bible were written, a mere two to three thousand years ago. At that time, dinosaurs had been extinct…
July 17th, 2015
I commit the same sins over and over, and I feel bad going to confession when it is most likely I will commit the same sin. How do I say I will not sin again when I feel inside I will sin again? Am I using confession as a excuse to sin knowing I can confess and be forgiven? All of us have weaknesses and our sins are consequences of that. No one is perfect, and usually many of…
July 10th, 2015
While the Church doesn’t have an official teaching on this topic, it is the policy of Catholic Charities to place adoptive children with single adults. Criteria taken into account include a person’s physical and mental health, ability to provide a stable and loving home environment, personal references, and extensive background checks. Although a…
June 19th, 2015
Question: As an animal lover and someone who has a deep connection to my pets, I’d like to know more about what the Bible says happens to our pets and other animals when they pass away. Does God have a place for them in heaven? Will we see them again? As a dog lover myself, who is obsessed with my best friend, Haze the Dog, I always picture Haze bounding toward me…
June 5th, 2015
Check out the answer to the question in this handy at-a-glance resource. Download it and take it to Mass with you! Click image to open or download the PDF.
June 3rd, 2015
The biblical writers themselves never uses the word “homosexuality,” but the few Biblical passages referring to homosexual acts (less than 10 passages in the entire Bible) refer to sexual acts between people of the same gender. The most prominent verses are in Leviticus 20:13 and Romans 1:26-27. Interestingly, there is not a single mention of homosexuality…
May 29th, 2015
An image of Jesus as the Lord of Health is seen in the Metropolitan Cathedral in Mexico City (Catholic News Service photo/Chico Sanchez)Jesus’ own words “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” might lead us to think this is so, but the truth expressed here is to suggest that Jesus is both human and divine. The human part of Jesus’ experiences…
May 28th, 2015
Watch this video and take a virtual tour to and through some other famous Catholic sites around the world.
May 27th, 2015
Museum’s collection to include earliest surviving New Testament discovered by University of Oxford scholars(Catholic News Service photo/courtesy Museum of the Bible)No. The Bible is better described as a set of books within a book, and as such, it’s not just a book of history. Certainly it sketches some of the history of our Jewish ancestors,…
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