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Welcome to sASK-a-Theologian, my Q & A format blog to aid me in my work as Archdiocesan Theologian.

The most famous definition of theology is that of St. Anselm of Canterbury who called it fides quarens intellectum, that is, faith seeking understanding.  And faith seeks understanding precisely by asking questions! It is an unfortunate fact that some Catholics have been given the false impression that they should not ask questions when doubts or problems arise in the context of the Christian life. But the Church has never taught this! In fact, Catholicism has always insisted on the compatibility of faith and reason and has always encouraged us to ask questions because questions are precisely the place where our reason and our faith can become more fully integrated.

This blog exists to offer a forum for the Catholics of the Archdiocese of Regina to put their questions about the faith to a professional theologian, someone who has made the study of questions about the faith his life's work.  If you have a question for sASK-a-Theologian, kindly send it to bretzkyathotmail [dot] com.  I'll do my best to answer it, and I may even recommend some further resources.

Another part of my work is to answer questions in person as a speaker at various events.  This blog also features answers I have given in those contexts, in video and/or text formats.

Brett

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The current campaign of the Coalition for HealthCare and Conscience which has been taking place to encourage the government of Saskatchewan to enact legislation to protect health care professionals in our province from having to participate in euthanasia/assisted suicide provides an opportunity for clarification about some the terms involved.  The letter being provided for those who wish to support this campaign to sign has been distributed through both our schools and parishes. In... Read More
 While many parents and community members are relieved and gratified by the Bishops of Saskatchewan’s recent decision to rescind the letter expressing concerns regarding the HPV vaccine and issue a new letter in its place, others are troubled.  It seems to some that such a decision by the Bishops is evidence of a weakening of Church teaching on chastity and even that the Bishops were cowed into submission by a hostile media.  Here at the Archdiocese we have heard from many who... Read More
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I’ve been working for the Church for about 4 years now.  And, as anyone involved in parish or diocesan life knows, that means I’ve been at my share of meetings.  It seems to me that there are a few themes that show up at most such meetings.  One of the most common in my experience is the question of hospitality.  I suspect that this did not start 4 years ago.  Rather, one imagines decades of visiting and revisiting this question.  The Church, we all agree and... Read More
By Brett SalkeldThis is the last of a three-part series.In this third of a series on raising kids Catholic I want to talk about some of the particular challenges our culture presents to us as Catholic parents trying to pass on the faith to our children. Can we identify with some precision certain cultural factors that are working against us, so as to effectively counter them?It would be too easy to simply compile a list of complaints about contemporary culture. What I hope to do instead is to... Read More
This is the second of a three-part series, originally posted in the Prairie Messenger.In the first part of this series we looked at things we can do in the home to help our kids appropriate the faith given to them in their baptism. Much more could be said, and my suggestions could serve just as well as sparks to your own imagination as examples to strictly follow. The larger point is to be intentional about your life of faith in the home.  But our faith is not a private family affair. It... Read More
Any bishop will tell you that one of the most heartbreaking parts of his job is meeting with elderly parishioners who lament that their children no longer participate in the life of the Church.  Parents in my own generation, whose children are perhaps not yet teenagers (my oldest is 9), often face the future with some anxiety.  Will our children continue on in the life of faith we have begun with them, or will they drift away like many in the generations before them?  It is easy... Read More
Tara writes to ask how best to respond to people who say that Christ’s presence in the Eucharist isn’t real, it’s just symbolic.Thanks for the question Tara!I think there are at least two complementary ways of approaching this.  The first is the most common.  Catholics who want to defend the claim that Christ is REALLY present in the Eucharist turn to Scripture.  There we can find extremely realistic language.  At the institution of the Eucharist Jesus says “This is my body... Read More
This is the fourth of a five-part series.In the first three parts of this series I have tried to paint a bleak picture of what the legal availability of physician-assisted suicide means for vulnerable individuals and Canadian culture generally. On the other hand, while this legal battle seems unwinnable at this stage, I am not without hope. The church has lived through bleak times before. While history is no picnic, Christianity offers us great resources for dealing with evil. In the final... Read More
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