AskACatholic.com (A faithful resource for anyone seeking to learn the truth about the Church and Her Teachings.) has been a lay-driven reply to Pope St. John Paul II's call for a new Evangelization; a call which has been continued by his successors Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis.
We are a new breed of faithful lay Catholic apologists and catechists who listen first, clarify teachings, and correct misperceptions people have about the only Church Our Blessed Lord Jesus founded on St. Peter, and his successors in
We do the best we can to ensure all our answers are loyal to the Magisterium, which is the Teaching Authority of the Catholic Church. [1.] While we give visitors to our site good reasons to become a Catholic Christian, our goal is not to convert people.
In addition, we have a secondary goal of assisting and promoting the development of other lay Catholic apologetics support groups at the parish level.
It was with this goal in mind that Mike Humphrey started (CPATS) the Christifideles Pizza and Theology Society, with the intent of bringing like-minded faithful Catholics who were loyal to the Church together for support and social conversation. After training himself on how to design and develop web sites, he founded this group in July of 1996. From then to the present day, Mike has been able to:
Our current team consists of full-time and part-time volunteers: Bob Kirby, Eric Ewanco, Paul Murano, and John DiMascio. If any team member has wished to resign or retire, another has always been able to step in to fill their shoes.
We have always tried to ensure we have at least one faithful priest who is in good standing with the Church to help answer questions only a priest could answer. For good reasons, most if not all, priest helpers have asked to participate under pseudonymous names. They include Fr. Nick, Fr. Francis, and our current priest-helper, Fr. Jonathan.
When given the opportunity to obtain the domain AskACatholic.com in 2007, it only seemed logical to redirect the focus of all our work from CPATS.org to that domain.
I believe we are the first lay Catholic Apologetics support group in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and possibly in New England. We consider ourselves a mini "Catholic Answers" of Massachusetts so whether you are a confused Catholic or a sincerely seeking non-Catholic of any or no faith we want you to Ask A Catholic, i.e., ask us today! but check our knowledge base first.
The rights of lay Catholic Christians while being ecclesiastically obedient
As a result of the type of questions we received through our web site, I saw a strong need to supplement my Catholic Apologetics web site with:
Besides these critically weak areas in our Church, due to a unique charism of a long-time friend, Brain Bagley, I also thought it was important to address the doctrine of Purgatory and praying for the Holy Souls in Purgatory. After several ongoing conversations with Brain, we saw that there were two important things missing today.
(A practice and devotion we thought had been neglected partially due to the bickering and mini-family fighting that occurred after Vatican II.)
In an effort to try to address these needs, I developed the following web sites, web applications, apologetics aids, and games:
Sharing the voice and writings of the Early Church Fathers, the first Christians who succeeded the Apostles, with our separated Christian brethren in the South!
This website consists of a database of early Christian quotes and writings that affirm the Catholic faith and Catholic teachings from the time of Jesus and His Apostles. On this web site you will be able to read the Oral Tradition (2 Thessalonians 2:15) that was passed down by word of mouth, by the very first Christians after Jesus' Ascension into Heaven. It is the same Oral Tradition that is practiced in the Catholic Church today. Most Patristic and Church scholars date the Early Church from 33 A.D. to 787 A.D., with the death of St. John Damascene. With this in mind, the majority of this site has been broken down into four separate content categories.
There is no direct catechesis or apologetics work done on this web site. We just provide:
Compare what was said back then with what the Catholic Faith teaches today and decide for yourself!
Besides this information, there are biographies of the Early Church Fathers and recommended reading under the About this site tab.
Many who are not Catholic have sometimes been misinformed about the origins of the Church and have never been presented with the historical verbal evidence for the doctrines and teachings of the Catholic faith. I thought that if we could show the mind-set of the Early Church Fathers and Christian Catholics in the years 100 A.D., 200 A.D., 300 A.D., 400 A.D., etc. this could cause our separated brethren to re-think certain doctrines that they have had a hard time accepting.
I, myself, have found what these early Church Christians have said to be very edifying and sometimes interesting. Whether you are Catholic or not, I believe you will enjoy this new feature on our site.
Holy Quotes will deliver Holy Quotes from the Early Church Fathers, Saints and Popes throughout the age of our Church to your inbox on a regular basis of your choosing.
With Holy Quotes you can receive Holy Quotes every second, third, fourth or sixth day; or every first, second or third week or every one or two months! You decide the frequency that you received them.
Now you can hear from the horses mouth:
But that's not all.
In an effort to promote a healthy sense of holiness in our Church and provide other apologetic guidance there are seven additional types you can choose from including:
So sign up today and tell others about us!
The Bible in our Church is a liturgical book. It was written by Catholics and their ancestors, for Catholic, for use in our worship service, the Holy Mass. Though the Bible is not a Catechism for our faith, we are aware that many of our Separated Brethren use the Bible as a Catechism.
For this reason, I created this page to show how unmistakably Catholic teachings can be shown in the Bible. Catholics don't defend their faith solely with the Bible but through the:
With this proper understanding of the purpose of this page, you are welcome to check out my Scripture Passages page at:
Due to an apparent lack of proper catechesis in our Church, I thought it was important to come up with a fun, new way to teach the youth about our faith. Seeing I have a B.S. in Computer Science, Minor in Math and two Web certifications,
I developed a parody off the popular show, Who wants to be a Millionaire, to suit the needs of our Church in this area.
It is my hope that players, whether they are Catholic or not, will have fun and learn about what Catholics believe.
I have tried to insert erroneous answers, that, in some cases, anti-Catholics may promote.
You will receive a different number of Lifelines for each level. If you run out of Lifelines for any level, the game ends though your last completed level is saved so when you sign in again, you won't have to start over. The idea behind it is for practicing Catholics to have fun with their faith while learning at the same time. In NO way is this intended to take the faith lightly.
You will have to get a certain percentage of answers correct without wasting all your lifelines for that level in order to advance to the next level. If you fall short at a certain level, you'll have to do some brushing up, in that specific area of the Catechism. In the future I'll be considering mailing out Certifications to those who have reached a million (1,000,000) grace points, although NO certification from our web site would obviously be acknowledged by Holy Mother Church.
One of the goals behind all the work I have done is to demonstrate to the faithful that you can be a faithful Catholic and have fun at the same time.
If you run into problems with the program or receive an error, there is nothing I can currently do, as I have no technical support friends to assist in fixing any bugs.
With that said, try it today! . . . . and, for fun and to get psyched, click on the images on the home page.
Helpers of the Holy Souls is inspired by Blessed Mary of Providence and the original mission of the Order she founded in 1856, Society of Helpers of the Holy Souls. Our presence on the web is a combined effort of Brian Bagley and a more computer-literate colleague and long-time friend, Mike Humphrey. Both Brain and Mike think the work of praying for the Holy Souls in Purgatory has been overlooked for way too long.
Our mission, one of mercy, is to relieve and gain release for the suffering souls in Purgatory who can no longer help themselves. We do this by monthly donations, collecting loose change and returning redeemable cans and bottles. All funds collected are used to place Holy Masses for all the Holy Souls in Purgatory.
We also fulfill our mission by holding a Holy Hour for the Holy Souls every Tuesday night immediately following the 7:00pm Holy Sacrifice of the Mass at the Fatima Shrine Chapel on Route 126 in Holliston, Massachusetts. All are welcome.
We share our mission by distributing complimentary Prayer Packs (used at our Holy Hour or privately at one’s convenience) to patrons of the Holy Souls. (This aspect of our work has been suspended due to a lack of financial support.) These Prayer Packs are a gift of the Apostolate and no Mass money collected goes toward their cost. All funds collected are used to place Masses for the Holy Souls.
Of course, we place all the efforts of our Apostolate into the Immaculate hands of Our Blessed Mother. Check out some of our special pages:
We would like to dedicate this web site to our fathers, Stephen William Humphrey Jr. and Thomas Joseph Bagley in appreciation for the blessings we received from them.
It's my hope that in the near future I will be able to re-start these programs. They include:
Please keep the finances of my work in your prayers. If you know of someone who is well off please refer them to my GoFundMe page:
The culture we live in today is far different than it was 15 years ago and though, in general, the Church has kept up with technology, there are still areas for improvement. My specific field in Catholic Apologetics is far too small an area for a Church our size. We can, and should, do better.
There are an array of knowledgeable Catholics who love and are willing to defend the Church and Her Teachings who are also professional Web Designers and Developers. In addition, there are other professionals in other fields who are willing to help and assist both the Web professional and web savvy Catholic Apologist.
With this in mind, I created a Linked In group for professional Web Developers and similar professionals interested in supporting the development of Catholic Apologetic web sites in the United States; sites that answer questions and clear up misperceptions about the one faith Our Lord Jesus founded on St. Peter
As I say on the site:
This group is a network of practicing Catholics, loyal to the Magisterium, who are also Web Development and Design professionals. Our goal is to:
The process of how Catholic professionals will be able to exchange ideas and provide real solutions that can be implemented by young Catholics at the parish level has yet to be determined. We welcome all faithful Catholics who love the Church, like the very first Christians did, to join us today!
Training programs at the diocesan and parish level.
Most of the faithful who show up every Sunday to renew their Covenant (by going to Mass) have no idea what Catholic Apologetics is and why it is so important. It's my impression that there is no appreciation ingrained in the faithful of the Christian heritage they have been baptized into - the only one that goes back to Jesus in 33 A.D.!
For this reason, within each diocese's CCD and RCIA program, I would introduce the vocation of the Catholic Apologist.
Training a teenager or newly baptized Catholic what we believe as Catholics is not enough in this culture because they are inevitably going to get counter arguments against the faith by:
I propose two schools of training combined into one:
Some may say this can't be done within a limited time frame but, if you provide a little knowledge during Baptismal and RCIA instruction and provide a low cost Catholic Apologetics tool kit, it will work. You can either take up a special collect or provide some other means of funding and put together Catholic Apologetic Kits for Youth and RCIA graduates that consists of:
The Church teaches no Catholic man has any right to be a priest. Rather if a man believes he has a calling to the sacred priesthood, he tests his vocation as part of his initial seminary training. Although the Church, guided by the Holy Spirit, chooses the man to become a priest, I'm sure there are many seminarians that are disappointed with the outcome of their training, specifically by not being chosen. These are Catholic men who:
For this reason, I would invite any former Catholic seminarian who was not chosen for the priesthood to seriously think about pursuing a life-long career as a Catholic Apologist. This is a sorely-needed vocation today because of the lack of catechesis in our Church and the secular draw from our current hedonistic culture.
Check out this posting (below) for some ideas and share with your local bishop your interest in this area. You could be a strong liaison for starting an Apologetics start-up group at the parish level.
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August 28, 2009
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Only web sites which have been reviewed by PetersNet, and merited an 'A' rating in fidelity, and no less than a 'B' in the other two categories, are eligible for this special award.
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Your web site was nominated for our 2000 Excellence Award. After careful review your site has been chosen an Excellent site - with high marks in every category scored.
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The idea for a Catholic Apologetics support group in Massachusetts originated back in September of 1992. I was invited by a friend, Mike DelVecchio, who had also taken an interest in Catholic Apologetics, to be part of a seven-man team to work on how to bring Catholic Apologetic programs to local Catholic parishes and to the Archdiocese of Boston as a whole. David Thorp RIP, the director of Evangelization at the time, under the guidance of Cardinal Bernard Law, lead, assisted, and directed all our efforts in this new area. My other colleagues were Mike DelVecchio, Bob Kirby, Rick Opera, Kent Hallamore, Dean Condon and David. Our work lasted around three years and we developed two future plans for the Archdiocese.
As a result of our previous meetings back in September, Bob Kirby debuted his new weekly radio show on WROL,
"The Catholic Forum" seeking to:
while permeating throughout each show a strong desire to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to Young Adults. Because Bob was unable to secure enough air-time sponsors for his show, it had to be discontinued.
When we saw that we could not fund a program like Bob's, the only alternative was to provide an online Catholic Apologetics service that was faithful to the Church for FREE.
Although I wish our work had been more effective, fruitful, and longer lasting, it's my hope that by sharing some of the documentation and ideas we had back in 1992, other men and women with an internal calling to Catholic Apologetics will be able to pick up where we left off and implement Catholic Apologetics training programs for interested Catholics at the parish level.
If anyone is interested in viewing the documentation produced by our work they can view it on my face book page.
Facebook has altered there set-up quite a bit. Once you go to facebook.com/AskACatholic, you have to scroll from whenever year it currently is all the way down to Posts from 1992. There should be a picture David Thorp, Director of Evangelization, RIP. Below his picture it will say:
Started Volunteering at Archdiocese of Boston for a Catholic Apologetics Start-up Working Group
If you click on his picture, you will get a slide show where you can view all the documentation.
The simple answer: No one!
This is why I have created a GoFundMe page.
Most of these resources can be found on in our AskACatholic.com recommended reading page in the last showcase on that page.
Basic recommended reading
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