Contemporary Spirituality: Fulton Sheen | Fr. Jacob-Bertrand Janczyk & Fr. Joseph-Anthony Kress

July 11, 2024

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: This is Father Jacob-Bertrand Janczyk. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: This is Father Joseph-Anthony Kress. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Welcome to Godsplaining. Thanks to all those who support us. If you enjoy the show, please consider making a monthly donation on Patreon. Be sure to like and subscribe to Godsplaining wherever you listen to your podcasts. Father Joseph-Anthony. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Howdy. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: How are you doing? 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Not bad. Not bad. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Really? 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: We’re getting through things. Yeah, take one day at a time and why would you do anything other than that? 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Because that sounds like barely surviving. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yes. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: That’s great. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: But sometimes you get in those modes where it’s harvest time and you got to just work hard and keep it going and just like take it one step at a time one day at a time. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: It’s beautiful. Yeah, real, real encouraging to us all. Thank you for tuning in to this episode of Godsplaining. Cool. Well, we’re like middle of summer somewhere in there. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah. Somewhere July is probably just getting warm in New Hampshire probably at this point. Yeah. Yeah. Just getting ready to see the sun. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah. But today is the 11th. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: I believe the air date is 11th on this. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: July, which if you say it a different way is 711. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: That’s right. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Which is a store, again, station convenience store. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Convenience store. I’ve probably been in one like six times in my life.  

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Okay. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: That’s it. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Which isn’t a lot. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: I was at a conference recently, the CEO or former CEO of 7-Eleven was talking about how he, you know, helped turn the company around from bankruptcy and all these things. It was fascinating ’cause I was just like, yeah, this is, it’s such an American icon. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Like the 7-Eleven (inaudible) Yeah, and it was amazing to hear him speak about it. But also just to think about, you know, you said you’ve only been one half dozen times or so. I mean, I can’t count the amount of times I’ve been into a 7-11. It’s just, it’s always there when you need it.  And the little hot dogs on the rollers that are there for like, you know, all day long. But they’re always there when you need them. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: They are good. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: They are good. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: I’ve had a rolled hot dog before, but I’ve never had one from 7-Eleven. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: It hits different, man. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: I’m sure it hits, and it’s different. All right, well, this has– we’re going to carry on in this vein. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Sure. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: You like road trips. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: I do love road trips. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: I think more than I do. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: I love to drive. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah. Not so much for me. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: That’s all right. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah. But okay, so we were gonna, I was gonna say like favorite seven slurpee, but how about we just go a little more broad? 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Road trip snacks?  So on a road trip you stop at a gas station, which you’re like, which I go to, pick up. – a gas station, which you’re like, what should you go to pick up? 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Well because, and you can tune into this episode that aired a while ago, optimism vs pessimism, just the virtue of complaining, there’s so many episodes I kind of give away my…

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Your disposition of life (laughing) 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah, I was gonna say things that I will not take on a road trip. I at least come up with one: beef jerky.

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: You refuse to have that in the car. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah In the car, yeah, no. Nasty. Sorry, I know a lot of people love it. It’s probably a me thing, but it’s nasty. But I usually, I mean coffee of some sort, but that’s not usually like from a 7/11. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah, so, well, I mean that’s 7/11 coffee. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah, but it’s usually something else. But always cold, always iced, and then I would say some sort of like nerd, gummy kind of things right now. Those have been on the top of those. Some kind of candy. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: So you’re sweet on this. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: I go sweet. Yes, yeah. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Nice, nice. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah. So, or nerd ropes. I’ll tell this and then I’ll stop. Nerd ropes. So I took– Those were like the thing when we were like kids. Mostly because you could hit people with them and then eat them. So it’s like execution of justice. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: You woke up and chose violence, I understand. Especially in the backseat of the car, like hitting your sister. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: We weren’t allowed to do that with parents around. But I was taking a road trip out to Colorado, driving out with a friend and like, nerd ropes came up. So we bought nerd ropes as we were going along, like three day trip. And still when we like drive, he lives in Indiana now, but he will like sometimes text pictures of like just random nerd ropes. So nerd ropes, I’ll put that at the top. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Okay, okay. Alright, it’s time to… So you go sweet on this. I tend to go salty with my snacks. I… 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Go ahead. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah, I’m just salty. I’m just a salty man. Uh, no, I like salty snacks on the road trip. Um, so I will get myself, uh, a 24 ounce of, uh, cherry Pepsi. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Oh, I can’t. Yeah. Okay. Okay. That’s, first of all, that’s not salty, but okay. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: No, no, no, but I’m saying it has to go together. Like I get myself a Cherry Pepsi for the drank, and then I will get– 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Did you just say, ‘drank’?

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yes, I did. (laughs) – And probably get a can of Pringles. I can crush a can of Pringles in a single setting and never think twice about it.  And so– 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Just original?

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah, the red can. Yeah, yeah. The original. And so I’ll get a can of Pringles and a cherry Pepsi. That’s typically what I will go with. I will also get sunflower seeds. If I’m driving long distances to help me stay awake because we have a mouthful of sunflower seeds, you can’t fall asleep or you’ll choke and die. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: So it’s a survival technique. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: It’s a survival technique. Yeah. So I always have sunflower seeds in the door of my car. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: I don’t like sunflower seeds either. – Not because they’re like gross, I just, I just don’t like cracking them over it. – Yeah. – So, yeah. – Anyways, well that’s good. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Okay, I’m talking about American icons, 7-11.

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: All right, we’re gonna work hard pivot. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: No, no, no, this is a smooth pivot. We’re talking about American icons in 7-11, convenience store gas stations that are known all over the nation, right? 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Okay. And hard pivot, I – Okay, and hard pivot. I’m sticking to the hard pivot. So yeah, we’re– 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Another American icon. We are all over the nation. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah, to the American icon. So we, I don’t know if it was, within the last year we started, if you’ve been keeping track of like episode stuff or if you haven’t, but we kind of introduced this, this, what? A segment, but this…

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: A series.

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Series, loose series…Lucille Ball series, of trying to cover some more contemporary spiritual authors or influencers. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Oh. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Kind of 20th century spirituality. So today we’re going gonna talk a bit about Bishop Fulton Sheen who is contemporary and as much as he lived during the 20th century. So, and yeah, I think we can say an American icon, I think in ways probably, you know, 50 years ago, everybody knew who Fulton Sheen was, maybe a little longer than that now at this point. But like our grandparents’ generation probably, everybody knew who Fulton Sheen was Catholic or not Catholic. That sort of thing. And we’ll talk about that. But now kind of, I don’t know, kind of lost to the, I would say like young adult Catholics have less of a sense and the young adult world have certainly has a less of a sense of who he is. But at one point certainly like an icon, I mean it was a little bit of a Time Magazine, he won two Emmys, like all the… so yeah so we’re going to talk about him maybe let’s lay out a bit about his life and then we can talk about some of the sort of things that he did and kind of the influences that he’s had on the American Church but also I know at least well speak for me and yeah the Universal Church, but also I think our own lives is he’s shaped our own lives as priests. So, Fulton Sheen, he was born in, he was born, gosh, I can’t read my own handwriting, he was born in 1895. So just before the turn of the 20th century died in ‘79 he was ordained a priest for the diocese, I believe it’s a Diocese not Archdiocese of Peoria, in 1919. And then he was made an auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of New York in 1951 and then in 1966 was made the Bishop of Rochester, which was less of a promotion and more of a booting out of New York. Like Cardinal Spelman. So that was, got a bit contentious. Yeah, I mean, it happens. There’s always political, whatever stuff. But yeah, so he died as Bishop of, he was Bishop of Rochester. That was his sort of last post. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: He was also, for short stink in there, he was the Bishop for the Propagation of the Faith.

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: That’s right. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: So I forget if that was– 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Well, it was a long stint, it was 16 years that he served as the promoter of the propagation of the faith. Just sort of like it was the evangelical kind of…mission oriented. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: So overseeing missions and developing countries and things like that. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Which is actually was the sort of cause of his being moved to Rochester. I don’t know if you know this story.

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: A little bit. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: So there was a big sort of fundraiser when he was Auxiliary Bishop of New York and when he was the Promoter of the Propagation of the Faith, there was a big fundraiser to raise funds and then to buy dried milk to send out to the missions. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Great. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: You know, so many people who were starving, just like starving children. And that was fund, it was raised through the collections and parishes and Sheen had donated a lot of his earnings, we’ll talk about some of his work on TV and stuff, to the propagation of the faith, to the missions, but also specifically to this fundraiser. And when they were collected by the Archdiocese of New York and sent out, the Cardinal Archbishop of New York, Spelman at the time asked for that archdiocese to be paid for the milk that was being sent. So it was given as a charitable gift, and then he wanted the diocese to be reimbursed after the diocese had okay paid which was like millions of dollars…

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Wow!

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Sheen said no, we’re not paying you for this thing which was given by the people as a charitable gift to the poor, we’re not paying for that. Yeah, so this argument got brought, so the two of them had an audience actually with Pius the XII, Pope Pius the XII at the time and Pius XII sided with Sheen. But then through machinations, the Cardinal Archbishop of New York had a lot of clout and power. He was moved from New York to Rochester. He was also canned as Promoter of the Propagation of the Faith after 16 years of work, and apparently donating $10 million, over $10 million of his own earnings from his TV gigs. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: So I mean, he has a long-story career as a priest and a bishop, so America’s prelate in that way, but he was also extremely visible. And so he started doing not only work with the developing countries and the missions, but he also started doing evangelical work and teaching the Faith. He had a very, very, you know, deep heart for educating. And so he decided to kind of take this motivation, this education drive, and get a TV show. And so, you know, right when TVs were ending up in every, in the living room of every single American household, he got on those airwaves and started educating in the faith. He had a big, little blackboard and he would have a piece of chalk and write up there and things like that. And so a lot of, a lot of his work and a lot of his kind of popularity, notoriety, all of that came from being on TV and really being a pioneer in that sense and stepping into that space when nobody else really was. But he did so in order to educate people on the faith. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Right. Yeah, and it wasn’t just like a rando, like public access TV. It was NBC. He had three shows and he was on NBC beginning in 1930 through 1968. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: So 30 years!

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah, 30 almost 40. Yeah, 38 years on on television. And it was prime time evening slot. It wasn’t just like daytime time – it was prime time television. He started for the first 20ish years with The Catholic Hour on NBC. Then he had this show called Life is Worth Living for about four years or three or four years or something like that in the 50s, and then in the 60s it was called the Fulton Sheen Program. He won two Emmys for his work which is incredible, on the cover of Time Magazine. It wasn’t…

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: It was a most watched television show in prime time. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Correct. Yeah, which is like for a Catholic bishop. I mean, tried to imagine that today like at like 8 p.m. A Catholic bishop having an hour slot on television. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah. And this is when it was not on demand. Like what was on TV was on TV. And everybody sat down and watched it. And he was able, he had this, just, people say it was a persona, people say it was kind of an air, but he had just a gravitas to him. It could command a nation through the TV, and he just did. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah, the cool thing too is like you can go to YouTube and you can watch episodes, clips, et cetera, and see exactly what we’re talking about. And I think your point about this era, this sort of thing, he’s certainly from a different era. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Totally. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Always teaching and talks and presents and that sort of thing, but it’s awesome to see. And I think your point about this teaching highlights there, we can look at his life and we’ve talked about a few different things, but look at his life as influencing the American Church and kind of like three umbrellas. I mean, they’re interwoven, they overlap, but they kind of three umbrellas. So right, you have this like this university or this teaching, well, the teaching thing kind of flows over, but this, it was also a professor, he taught at Catholic University of America here in Washington, D.C. for a long time. And so he has this influence over the American University. He does this media influence on television and other things, you know, like he was in magazines, but this like almost 40 years in television prime time, you know, this sort of thing, right? And then also, then we could talk about all of it, but his sort of his role in politics. Often I think we think, and wrongly, I think there’s a right way to do it, that religion and faith are not influenced politics or vice versa, but it is the case that where, as Catholics, work or call to live in such a way that we sanctify the world in which we live and we work to usher in the kingdom of God. So he had, it’s funny if you read some of his books, he was very anti-communist. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Very anti-communist. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: And even if you read, especially his book on, not especially, but even his book on Mary has a chapter on communism and being against communism in Our Lady and that sort of thing. So, but in any case, the university, media, politics involved in all of that and really influencing the church in these ways. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah, I remember his autobiography Treasures in the Clay is such a beautiful book. He was talking about his education and he studied in Louvain and when he was getting ready to sit down for his defense, they would kind of reveal how you did in the exam by the drinks that were served at the dinner table. If they served beer, that means you just passed. If they served wine, it’s like you pass with distinction. If you, if they serve champagne, you pass with the like utmost distinction. And they talked about how the champagne never tasted so good. And it was like just his writing style and a drew you into that moment. But you see that he was educated in the best universities in Europe at the time. And he actually has a really strong, Thomistic foundation in that. And he carried that in, was able to translate it over to the masses by his media work and his publications and things like that. But he always had a heart for the traditions of the faith and like almost being surrounded in those like just totally immersed in them so that then he would be able to teach in the classroom. And you can see so much in his writing style, in his media work, on the TV shows, like he is standing there. He sees himself as teacher. – 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: You know? – And he talks a little bit about that, like the influence of Catholic education in his own life and his upbringing, but then also being able to stand there as Christ the teacher. And so he took that role really, really seriously. And in many ways, you could see the rest of his work has actually been kind of a stream overflowing from his understanding of the work of education, Catholic education, and his role in working with Christ as teacher. – 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah, and that also, it’s true. But that, or with that, that also, it’s true. But that, or with that, not bud, it’s not a contrary thing. But with that, it presumes that there’s someone to be taught. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah, absolutely. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: And every great teacher understands that they’re teaching not to a vacuum, but to particular people. And in the way Fulton Sheen taught, I would assume in the classroom, I have no experience of him in the classroom, but through his television shows, through his writings, through his books, some which are more kind of, not academic, but like less spiritual and more kind of theological, like dogmatic and then some that are more spiritual. You can see that there’s, that he teaches with a passion because he believes ardently in like dignity of the human intellect of our ability to come to know and not only know but to love God and that there’s like this passion and fire because because he wants people to know Jesus Christ and to live a life, like his show and a book to Life is Worth Living. You know, like this idea that we’re made to know and to love and to live with Christ. And you see this passion for that alive and all of these facets from his politics, to his media, his preaching, his teaching, all of it. It’s contagious. – 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: The form- we talk about, there’s a lot of jokes around Fulton J. Sheen, He was America’s bishop or America’s prelate. He had such an influence. But look at how, like he’s not an idiot. Like he knew what he, like the status he had. But how did he wield that? Well, he set himself and devoted himself to forming the intellect of the American people. Informing it in union with Christ who is the truth. Like that was so much of his work. He spent so much of his days and writing and being on TV and even in the classroom. But he was, like you said, he had a passion. He was utterly convicted of the formation of the intellect and union with Jesus Christ leads to our salvation. And it helps us to understand how to lead this life and to receive it for the gift that it is. But he didn’t downplay that. He wasn’t trying to kind of sanitize this in whatever way, but he elevated the intellect of all the people that listened to him, that read his works and things like that. So I think it’s really a good point that you bring up is like, he was such a devoted teacher in that he respected the intellect of every single person and devoted himself to forming that and elevated them to Christ himself. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah. So we talked about these sort of general- like umbrella kind of areas where she had influence. There are a couple themes or what like passions of Sheen that kind of stand out, at least from, I was going to say my devotion. Do I have a devotion to Fulton Sheen? I think in ways. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah, I do. Yeah, I legitimately thought about taking his name as a religious name. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Really? 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Fulton or Sheen? 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Fulton. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Okay. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah, I can’t say l’s though, so I figured that’d be weird if I was gonna be the rest of my…. “Fou-ton”, “hi, I’m Fou-ton” (laughs).

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: That’s tough, alright. But to stand out one I’ll take one of them, and that’s his that’s his love and devotion to the priesthood. He has yeah, he writes about the priesthood. He, in various aspects, The Priest is Not His Own, right? 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: That book rocked my world. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah. If you’re thinking about the priesthood or want to know more about the priesthood…

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: I read that book when I was in college. It kicked my butt.

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Me too. And then in the novicia, and I read it again in formation. Like at some point, maybe on retreat or something like that. And then also, it’s not expressly about the priesthood, but his Life of Christ

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yes! 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: His biography of sort of Christ, Yeah, I love it. It’s a chunker. It’s like it’s a big read, but it’s like– I think it’s a great Lenten read, because it walks– you know, you walks through the entire life, the Scriptures of the life of Jesus. But those who stand out as, as, what, like moments or things that highlight his love of Christ, the priest and his participation in that priesthood and the living of that vocation. You know, you were mentioning as teacher, and we really see him as teacher because in front of the camera, this is him as teacher because in front of the camera, this is what he was doing in front of the classroom, but also in his sacramental ministry, you know, his offering of the Sacrifice of the Mass and exercising his priesthood this way. It’s a palpable reality that he believes in the priesthood and the efficacy of the priesthood and it’s an inspiring reality because I think currently current climate of the church there isn’t this like call to excellency and greatness in the priesthood and the beauty of the priesthood. It’s kind of been dead and over the last decade I think. So he’s somebody in the sort of American milieu that I think he’s inspiring in this way. It makes you, I mean, I want to be a priest, I am a priest, but like I was going to say, makes you want to be a priest. And be a good, or at least try to be a good priest. Yeah. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: I think there’s two other things like really pivotal books that he’s written. The World’s First Love, which is his book on the Blessed Mother. It’s unbelievable. That’s a way to jumpstart somebody’s devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. And he does such a good job of being able to place the devotion and love for her in its proper context in love for Jesus. And so that’s a fantastic book. And then there’s another book, Three to Get Married, which is a book I use a lot for wedding prep. (Sneezes) And, excuse me, but that book is such a beautiful book because it actually introduces this whole concept of what marriage is, what is the sacrament of marriage, that it’s this union of two individuals as they are pursuing holiness in God, and that it takes three, God, a husband, and a wife to establish that marriage, and not just the husband and wife and whatever kind of concepts that they have of this, but it breaks open that relationship so that it can be, you know, in context and in relationship with God. So those are two things. I will say though, the one, yeah, maybe theme that I have found through all of these works is Fulton J. Sheen’s love for humanity. He is not scandalized by like the rawness of human beings. He’s not scandalized by his own rawness. You know that with each and every work and you see it in so many ways, his autobiography, the life of Jesus, or The Life of Christ, A Priest is Not His Own, World’s First Love, like all of these books, like they have something that is just…his ability to capture and embrace humanity where it is, but not be satisfied with that, and to lead it into a direction that’s closer to Jesus is something that I think is the constant thread through all of it. So when we talked about, you know, his life and his work and what he does is also this aspect of his example to embrace the rawness of humanity where it is, to not be scandalized by it. And I think that was what was so captivating by so many Americans that watched him on TV, that read his books, like they just saw somebody who spoke in today’s…that he was real. He was just like spoke like in this like, yeah, he did because he loved humanity. He wasn’t afraid of it. He wasn’t scared of it, but he could embrace it. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah, I remember I, I forgotten. I think it’s him. You can correct me if I’m wrong or maybe don’t and we can just pretend it was yeah, but I don’t remember which book, but I it was there was in part of a book about, I think he was writing about prayer, and he talks about like morning meditation. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: This is, this is in A Priest is Not His Own

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: That’s what I thought. Yeah. It’s like drinking coffee before… 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: He said that female religious orders should be permitted to rewrite their constitutions and their rules to allow their sisters to drink coffee before they…

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Morning prayers. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: He said with the invention of the electronic percolators for coffee, you can start a pot of coffee early in the morning and allow your sisters to drink coffee then go to meditation so that they can have better prayer. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: And in my experience, the morning meditation without caffeine, it just becomes a nap or back to bed. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yes. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: But even that little example, and he’s not like going on about it in the, it’s like, it’s kind of like a witty kind of comment. He’s like kind of making a joke about it, but it’s also like to the point that you’re making that like he recognizes like a prayer, if you’re not a, like you’re just going to sleep, like that’s it, just have a little coffee, you’ll be fine, caffeine will help you out. So yeah, there’s this, there’s this, like, young engagement with the reality of our humanity in serious ways, but also in these kind of like, playful ways to do this. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: And I think that’s part of it, is his embrace, his love for humanity kind of, pushes and motivates him into this kind of third umbrella that we haven’t really talked about, was the political aspect of it, which is for us, like as Americans, it’s like, ooh, religion and church and state never talk. And it’s like, well, here is a guy that’s talking very directly about a lot of political issues, you know, because he loved the human person. He loved humanity. And he saw what a great dignity it is to be made in the image of likeness of God and to retain that. And he was very vocally against communism and didn’t hold back. And it was one of those things that like he found a reason to talk against communism at any point. Like he found one. You know, no matter where he was or what he was doing. But it was actually really, really important. And you think back to mid 20th century and all that, like, yeah, there was a lot of confusions. And you know, what do you do with communism internationally? What do you do with it domestically and things like that? And here is a voice that’s stepping out into this and saying, this is not in line with our vision of our Faith. What we understand or who we understand God to be and who we understand each other to be. And this is not in line with that. And he was just unafraid to call that out. And spoke vehemently against it because he was motivated because he saw the love and he understood how great a gift it is to be a human person. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah, cool. Fulton Sheen. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Big fan. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Yeah. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Big fan. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: So if you haven’t had a chance to watch or to read, recommend it. What books we recommended, The World’s First Love, which is a book on our Blessed Mother. A Priest is Not His Own on the priesthood. The Life of Christ, which is, a life of Christ. What else did we recommend? 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Treasures in the Clay

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: That’s his autobiography. Life is Worth Living is another one. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Three to Get Married

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Three to Get Married. They’re great. Check him out. Yeah, he’s awesome. So pray for his cause, too. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah, you kind of mentioned like maybe some young adults don’t actually know who he is and stuff. I mean, God bless the internet man. It’s all on YouTube and like you can watch clips of Fulton J. Sheen and actually I know a lot of young adults that still go back. They’re like, “I was watching Fulton J. Sheen the other day and he said this is like, I work with that with my own college students. I’m like, “Yeah, he’s kind of perennial at this point.” And that’s why we love it. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: He gets it done. 

Fr. Joseph-Anthony: Yeah, he does. Big fan. 

Fr. Jacob-Bertrand: Well, thanks for listening to this episode of Godsplaining. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Like, subscribe, leave a five-star review. If you’d like to donate and support the podcast, you can do so through Patreon. Follow the link in the description. You can also follow the links in the description to shop Godsplaining merch and to get information about upcoming Godsplaining events. As always, thanks for listening. Know of our prayers for you. Please pray for us and until next time, God bless.