• Our Blogger

    Fr. Joseph Jenkins

  • The blog header depicts an important and yet mis-understood New Testament scene, Jesus flogging the money-changers out of the temple. I selected it because the faith that gives us consolation can also make us very uncomfortable. Both Divine Mercy and Divine Justice meet in Jesus. Priests are ministers of reconciliation, but never at the cost of truth. In or out of season, we must be courageous in preaching and living out the Gospel of Life. The title of my blog is a play on words, not Flogger Priest but Blogger Priest.

  • Archives

  • Categories

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

    john on Ask a Priest
    Sarah on Ask a Priest
    Aidan on Ask a Priest
    "Alyssa on Ask a Priest
    mike shannon on MARY OUR MOTHER

Ask a Priest

Feel free to submit a new question or concern in the comment box below.  Various topics and questions are archived here for easy retrieval.  Please be courteous.  Comments are moderated so please be patient in waiting for them to appear and for any responses.  God bless you!





5,036 Responses

  1. Dear Fr. Joe,
    A couple questions regarding our Almighty Father.

    1) Is there away to make a formal request to the Sacred Congregation of The Doctrine of Faith to set 1 day annually in honour of GOD the Almighty Father. After all he is the creator, and if not for him, there would be no Christianity. As well, we recognize Jesus Dec 25 in a joyous celebration. I think we need a dedicated celebration for the Almighty Father.

    FATHER JOE: There is no need, every Mass on every day is directed to God the Father.

    2) I noticed a Pastor who calls himself a non denomination Christian. He said he won’t call himself Father. In fact he is clear there is only 1 Father which is reserved for GOD the Almighty Father. If my Dad and I make to heaven, visibly my Dad and I will not have the visual earthly aging difference. Perhaps we will both look as young as Adam did in Eden. Here is my question. Can you confirm in heaven there is only 1 Father, GOD the Almighty Father? Therefore I will need to call my Dad by his first name if we make to heaven, but still treat him with a sense of filial piety or honour as a parent. Is this a correct way of thinking?

    FATHER JOE: First, the label non-denominational is a trick of language. There is no middle-ground between Catholic and Protestant. When it comes to the Western Church, if a minister is not Catholic, then he is Protestant . . . no matter whether he wants to admit it or not. Second, the “call no man your father” statement by Jesus is Hebraic hyperbole. It is a form of emphatic Jewish speech. It means there is no true fatherhood that does not reflect divine fatherhood. Third, on earth or in heaven, nothing changes the trajectory and status that your biological mother and father play in your life. The grave does not destroy this relationship within the communion of the saints. Believers honor their parents by divine command. While there is change in the dynamics of a relationship, just as in this life, there is no expiration. We also appreciate that in baptism we become adopted sons and daughters of the Father, kin to Christ our elder brother and children of our spiritual Mother Mary.

    Sincere Regards

  2. Dear Father Joe,
    I feel like the Lord is calling me to give up my possessions and follow him. The feeling has been getting stronger but I have been struggling to let go of my possessions. How do I know if the Lord is calling me. And do you have any advice on giving up worldly possessions.

    Best regards,

    FATHER JOE: Unless you are going to join a religious order I would not recommend such a move. Even the Franciscans are required to have a means of income, putting food on the table and a roof over their heads. All is used in common. If you make such a move as an individual it is likely you will be hungry and living in a cardboard box. God does not glorify poverty but rather discipleship. How would you intend to serve God as a vagrant on the streets?

  3. I missed Mass today. Was this a sin?

    FATHER JOE: Was it Sunday? Were you at fault and missed for no good reason? If so then yes it was a matter of sin.

  4. Fatherb,if a person uses and iud or contraception that has aborticant effect knowingly are they excommunicated

    FATHER JOE: Use of the IUD is sinful but the censure of excommunication is in cases of actual abortion.

  5. Father, this is a bit of ranting with a question. My husband of 15 years has never tried to bring me to climax during sex. He is very selfish and thinks only about self, even after explaining 100 times he doesn’t do it. Initial years of marriage i always suppressed my desires just to give him pleasure bcoz he had some issues, due to which we have not conceived. Now his issues are almost fine but still he does not think of me. Its like he just leaves me half done amd it makes me restless and not wanting to have sex at all and intimacy has decreased. Yesterday i was restless so tried to finish by having a self orgasm after the act (act ended in PIV itself) , bcoz i was almost there. Im not sure if its a mortal sin, i did it only once but i feel so guilty not wanting to receive the Lord unworthily. At the same time if I didn’t do it I will never be able to have intimacy with my husband. I just dont want to have sex bcoz of this behaviour of my husband. Please help and guide me.

    FATHER JOE: Remember, that I can only speak to this concern as a celibate priest, thus my response will be very general. Spouses should concentrate on the needs of the beloved in the marital act. A refusal to do so is indeed selfish. What should be a joyful expression of mutual fidelity can become a mechanical and selfish act. God understands human weakness and your desire to be faithful to your husband; however, if you are troubled in conscience, you can bring the matter to a confessor. Catholic ethicists have long argued that a husband should assist his wife to find the joy of the union in the full context of the marital act.

  6. Hi Father, my question is this. As a Catholic, obiously I understand he is our Father, and our Creator and his Son Jesus is our Savior and what not. And I understand the Holy Trinity concept as all being God. All in the same persons each different yet the same God. The Father is God, The Son is God and The Holy Spirit is God. But, my question is this Father. I have a biological Father obiously and he is a good Dad, but I deem God my Dad, like I deem him my Biological Dad. I even call him Dad. So I see God as my Dad not my earthly Dad. When I told my Catholic Mom this, she got upset and told me that God is our Heavenly Father and to reverence him as such. My question is, are we supposed to see God as our Dad in a literal sense or are we to honor our earthly Dad as our Dad? Thanks Father

    FATHER JOE: Do you not remember the commandment? “Honor your father and your mother, as the LORD, your God, has commanded you, that you may have a long life and that you may prosper in the land the LORD your God is giving you” (Deuteronomy 5:16). You disobey God by dishonoring your biological father and failing to claim him as such. You are very much in the wrong and your mother has a right to be upset at such a failure to show respect. Our fathers, like all men, are not perfect but most try to be good spouses and supportive parents. Do you not love him? Did something happen to make you want to renounce him? The fatherhood of God may take precedence but it does not eclipse earthly paternity; indeed, something of God’s love and nurturing should shine through the lives of all mortal fathers.

  7. A Hindu god has been bothering me telling me of thing like telling me this represents him them someone or something does something that works in his favor such as someone says something about Hindu or I see something that resprents the god well and it makes predictions and they come true I don’t know what to do he going to make me lose my faith

    FATHER JOE: There are no Hindu deities. Any such supposed “god” is either a delusion or a demon.

  8. Hello

    I’m just wondering and I feel concern but is it a sin for a woman like me likes a guy who is is just 6 years younger than me? Even though my parents are against for that age gap?

    Thank you
    God Bless

    FATHER JOE: If you mean by “like” that there is an attraction, such is not a sin in itself. If there is something wrong with the relationship and you “act” on it then there would be a bad or sinful situation. Six years is not a great deal to worry about if the both of you are mature and adults.

  9. Fr. Joe,
    We see a lot of conflict in the Church. Bishops taking opposing stances, e.g., giving Communion to pro-abortion politicians and in other topics. What are we in the laity to make of these sharply opposing views? It seems Pope Francis allows the bishops to do as they please and he rarely makes a direct intervention.

    FATHER JOE: We should say our prayers and maintain a faithful witness.

  10. Although not intended this might come across as offensive to some. Why does God have preferences? 31 years of abuse, grief, betrayal by all and abandoned by two sets of parents. All childhood dreams destroyed, health ruined and have no one to turn to. No matter how much I try to be a good person, I find that those who don’t care about faith or mistreat others are actually living my dream life. Money, a home, friends, lovers and families. Why am I abandoned by God? Why am I less in His eyes than those that hurt me?

    FATHER JOE: Why do bad people sometimes flourish and good people suffer? Divine providence is a mystery but look to the Cross. If even our Lord could be betrayed, tortured, abandoned and murdered then why should any of us who follow him expect better treatment? He says to us, “Take up your cross and follow me.” He is in solidarity with us in our woundedness. What you interpret as abandonment might be a special summons for discipleship and holiness. God’s election may have singled you out for holiness. But the question comes to each of us . . . will we follow?

  11. Hello Father,

    I have a question about a possible sin. A few years ago, when I was teaching during Covid, we had a 2 hour rule where if we were going to be doing non-teaching things beyond 2 hours, we should take time off. At the time, I was debating switching jobs and on one particular afternoon, I found myself distracted with application materials for another teaching job. At some point that same afternoon, I decided I was going to email my school secretary to take PTO, since I was using it for personal use. When she responded, it must have been too late to do this, so in order to be fair, I ended up taking a different day off in the future, but working the chunk of time I had ended up using to work on resume biz, as a way to make up for the company time I had used.

    My question is, I know when I made a confession after this scenario, I wasn’t sure if I needed to confess stealing time. I think I felt that as I became aware that I was using too much company time, I had already made the decision that I was going to repair the situation so that the company got their due work hours. Thus, I didn’t think i needed to confess it. However, looking back I just want to make sure my reasoning sounds okay. I tend to be scrupulous and doubt myself, so if I need to confess this I can.

    FATHER JOE: As long as you gave your work the time that was due then I see no problem.

  12. Hi Father,

    A question on homosexuality.

    Leviticus 18:22 states “Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.”

    Gay acts (man-to-man) are explicitly ‘detestable’, as the Bible puts it.
    However, there is no explicit mention of sexual relations ‘with a woman as one does with a woman’, i.e. lesbian.

    I’ve tried to research online further about this but can’t find any analysis on it. Was wondering your thoughts.

    Thank you

    FATHER JOE: Read your New Testament. Romans 1: 24-27: “Therefore, God handed them over to impurity through the lusts of their hearts for the mutual degradation of their bodies. They exchanged the truth of God for a lie and revered and worshiped the creature rather than the creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. Therefore, God handed them over to degrading passions. Their females exchanged natural relations for unnatural, and the males likewise gave up natural relations with females and burned with lust for one another. Males did shameful things with males and thus received in their own persons the due penalty for their perversity.”

  13. Hello Father,
    I have a very difficult decision to make.
    I was recently accepted to a school in Greece. I put down my enrollment deposit and was so excited to go- plus, my visa was approved and it took a lot of time and effort for that to happen.
    However, upon talking to some of the people I will be going to school with, it seems as though my values and theirs are not really in alignment. It appears to be a liberal environment.
    Recently I met a man from Costa Rica. He is solid in his Catholic faith, and we have discussed a future together extensively despite being 17 & 19, almost 18 & 20.
    Because of him, I have rethought my decision to go to college in Europe, and instead stay close to my family in the states and do online school, get involved in a Young Catholics Group, and be closer to him. He is the face of Jesus, and is extremely kind. I have never loved someone so much. I just am not sure what to do, could you give me some guidance?

    FATHER JOE: Put on hold the romantic entanglement. Grow up a little bit and go to school. Going to college in Greece is a great opportunity. It may never come again. Romantic euphoria about a man you hardly know will likely end badly and end with regrets. If love is real and meant to be then it can wait.

  14. Father Joe, I am in my late 40’s and I have had a tumultuous journey thus far. Neither of my parents believed in God so I wasn’t raised to believe. I married right out of High school. Unfortunately, my spouse cheated on me and that resulted in a child. We got divorced. I do not have the ability to reproduce due to an illness I was born with. I got remarried and a fter 7 years my spouse cheated and produced a child with someone else. There was drug abuse and physical abuse during our 7 years. We got divorced. I joined a Pentecostal church and was baptized. Eventually, I married again with the promise of adopting children and commitment to the Lord. We even waited to be intimate until we were married. After the first year my spouse decided they were an atheist. I found out my mother had been raised Catholic and all my ancestors were Catholic. I joined an RCIA class at my local Parrish. A week before my confirmation my spouse forbade me from becoming Catholic and decided that they didn’t want to “raise someone else’s children”. Therefore, I wasn’t going to be able to adopt. Then my spouse quit their job. Stole all our money out of the bank and spent it on partying with friends. I was done. We got divorced. In my late 30’s I met my current spouse who has an adult kid who has children so I get to be a grandparent. My spouse is non religious but not an atheist. I fell in love with Catholicism. The Eucharist has been what draws me the most. Since I am thrice divorced I am afraid that I will never be in holy communion with Jesus Christ through the Eucharist. I know my actions have prevented me from becoming Catholic and being able to partake in the Sacraments. What about redemption? What can I do to be able to become a Catholic?

    FATHER JOE: I would urge you to speak to your local Catholic priest and apply to the Tribunal for annulments of the previous bonds. I cannot tell you what grounds they will find because many more details will need to be forthcoming in the depositions and essays. The process can be heart wrenching but it ultimately leads to greater healing. I have had successful cases of multiple annulments so do not despair yet of becoming a Catholic and marrying your current spouse in the Church. Were any of the three previous spouses baptized as a Catholic? If so and the marriages was not in the Church then those should be easy to remedy. You were not baptized for the first bond and it is possible that the Pentecostal baptism may not be valid. Some Pentecostal congregations baptize only in the name of Jesus and not in the name of the Trinity as dictated by Jesus at the end of the Gospel of Mathew. That could have a bearing as well. The fact that there was infidelity often shows a level of immaturity and deception. Addictions would also speak to one’s ability to fulfill the obligations of marriage. I will keep you in prayer and urge you to attend Mass even though you should wait until reception so as to take Holy Communion. God bless you.

  15. Hi Fr. Joe.
    I’ve heard that yoga is not aligned with Catholic practice and should be avoided. However, what about Thai Chi? Is that safe to participate in?
    Thank you,

    FATHER JOE: The exercises arguably have value. The spiritual or religious elements do not.

  16. So who do Roman Catholics worship ? Is it Jesus Christ or Lucifer ? The Pope Francis says Lucifer is his god is this true of all Roman Catholics or just the Priesthood ?

    FATHER JOE: You are very much deceived. The Pope and true Catholics worship almighty God. Jesus Christ established the Catholic Church 2,000 years ago and promised Peter that hell itself would never prevail against her.

  17. I was wonder if I should avoid working for a tobacco company. There is a sales position with a tobacco company that I’m considering but I’m not sure if this would be against the church or not.

    FATHER JOE: It is up to you. The Church has no rules about such.

  18. Hi Father,
    I am a 13 year old boy who recently began becoming more involved with the faith. And recently I have come across knowledge that has really shook me.
    I am a big fan of Marvel movies, love the stories, larger than life characters (of course I always try my best to never let it control my life). But recently I have come found out that Disney (who own marvel and make the movies) are pro-abortion and actually give some of it money to abortion charities.
    My question is would me giving money to watch a marvel movie be a sin since some of the money would end up in the wrong hands? Should I have to stop enjoying something because of the “evil business” actions in which I have near to no control of?
    Wishing you all the best.
    Kind regards
    The 13 year old boy

    FATHER JOE: The moral agency is remote and so you are not culpable. While we should challenge companies for such things, you would be amazed at what so many of them support and to what they donate. This includes hotels, food and candy companies, cable TV, computer makers and software groups, etc. By the way, as a disclaimer, I also like Marvel movies and comic books!

  19. Dear father,

    I would like to ask a question regarding the Antichrist in revelation. What is the description of the Antichrist? Will it rise from hell as a beast or rise up through society as a man?
    I’m just curious to get your input

    FATHER JOE: Any who oppose Christ is antichrist.

  20. Hi Father,
    My miraculous medal was gold plated but the gold has worn off. I painted it with gold paint. Then I remembered that this is a blessed medal and wondered if what I did was disrespectful. The paint isn’t sticking and it now looks much as it did before. Before I do anything else I’d like to k ow I’m not committing a sin. Thank you!

    FATHER JOE: There is no sin in restoration efforts.

  21. Good morning Father,

    I’m writing to you this morning regarding paranormal activity and Purgatory.

    2.5 years ago, my father passed away. His passing has been incredibly difficult on me. He was my best friend, my hero, the best father ever and I thank our Lord for him everyday. Since his passing, I’ve experienced a great deal with paranormal activity. My family has experienced these issues but only when they’re near me. I haven’t been afraid. I was once told that if you experience these issues, these are souls in Purgatory reaching out to you. I was told to ignore them but I could never ignore my father, he and I had the best father/daughter relationship in this life.

    I don’t want to do anything wrong. I’m Catholic, I love my faith with all I have in me. I just want to do what’s right! Any advice on this subject? Thank you, Father.

    Thank you,

    FATHER JOE: As Catholics we should not actively pursue two-way communication with the dead. However, the Lord may sometimes allow the poor souls or saints to make themselves known to us. My counsel when it comes to the dead and the paranormal is always the same: PRAY FOR THEM. I try to remember my parents with an intentioned Mass each year. You can call your local Catholic parish and they will schedule one for you. Usually the names are listed in the bulletin. Peace! (Remember, if the soul for whom we pray is not in Purgatory but is in Heaven, then the graces of the prayer or Mass will be applied to another poor soul in need or who has not one to pray for him or her.)

  22. Hello A: Why should we love and respect the Holy Mary? (Because Maryam is the star of our hope. And was she the one who opened the doors of our world to happiness?)

    FATHER JOE: Mary offers her “fiat” to God at the annunciation for all humanity. She is the new Eve who is faithful with Christ, the new Adam. Jesus gives Mary to us as our Mother through our emissary John at the Cross. The Mother of the Redeemer becomes the Mother of all the Redeemed. (Beware of non-Christian superstitions!)

  23. Could I please ask is anyone aloud to go in to a church at any time day or night to just sit and think and not have to pray. Does the church warden have a responsibility to open the church anytime day or night if asked to do so or let us have the key to open it up. Please.

    FATHER JOE: Given recent acts of vandalism, it is unfortunate, but sometimes churches need to be locked.

  24. Dear Fr. Joe,

    Is the Archbishop of a Nunciature, an Ordinary? I found this definition of Ordinary from Vatican Website.


    FATHER JOE: The Ordinary is in charge of a diocese.

  25. How should the laity view disagreements between Bishops and Cardinals? Recently we saw Bishops strongly stating some pro-abortion politicians are not to receive communion and denying such in their dioceses. Other Bishops, including Pope Francis, openly administer communion to the same politicians. This seems a schism within the Church. What are we to think?

    FATHER JOE: Each bishop has jurisdiction over his diocese, that includes in matters of discipline. Bishops differ about many practical matters.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: