Monday, August 15, 2016

Bishop Barron on Morality, Character and Relationships

I've had such good feedback from the previous post with Fr. Robert Barron, a Roman Catholic bishop who publishes regular short video talks in a series he calls "Word on Fire", that I am posting another favorite of mine from that series. In this talk, Bishop Barron zeroes in on the relationship between morality and character, and illustrates beautifully the false dichotomy behind the Gnostic fallacy (that our mind may keep itself pure even if we corrupt our body):

For those whose browsers will not display the video above, here is the link to it on YouTube. Enjoy!


  1. Thank you for posting this video. As a child & adolescent psychiatrist working in clinical and academic settings, I couldn't agree more with the views expressed, both directly by Bp. Barron, and the referenced ideas of Dr. Sax. One of the great challenges we mental health professionals face stems from the fact that the popular culture is often wrong in answering questions about what constitutes mental health and healthy relationships. Our job dictates that at times, we must tell our patients - especially young adults - that even though the popular culture endorses a particular behavior, such behavior may be not only unhealthy, but dangerous. Young people don't like hearing this - but then again, no one likes to think that they're in the wrong, and a reflexive defensiveness is the normal response. Perhaps a gentle, somewhat subtle, exposition of truth will in time provide a place for deeper, honest self-examination and change.

  2. The video made me think about the teaching of Jesus. The moral behaviors the Bishop speaks about that shape our human characters were, are and will be relevant. Below, I've posted a passage from Mark's Gospel.

    Mark 7: 20-23 (NIV)

    20 He went on: “What comes out of a person is what defiles them. 21 For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. 23 All these evils come from inside and defile a person.”

  3. Bishop Barron seems like one of the good Roman Bishops. But watching him reminds me of the good bishops in ECUSA who could do nothing to stop the rest of the bishops/clergy from moving the denomination away from Christian faith. The LGBTQ activist clergy in the Roman church scare me especially because in the Roman tradition I do not see a way for the laity to engage in challenging the doctrinal changes embraced by "progressive" clergy. I hope that the Roman church can hold fast long enough; hopefully, seeing our struggles in the Protestant churches, their clergy and laity will be able to address the false teaching before bad bishops take control.

  4. My comments are too long and too depressing. But I did wish to re-join the commentary. The rot is complete. All fundamentalist and Orthodox Christians are museum pieces. We lost all when the schools were manned in their majority by "professionals" instead of by people with a calling. The professionals are the spawn of the Progressive Movement, and their mission is to destroy Common Law, Natural Law, and the concept of family. Nuf sed. I retire until later this coming week. Thank the Lord for our Curmudgeon.
    El Gringo Viejo