046: St. John Paul II Through the Eyes of a Swiss Guard

Featuring Andreas Widmer

catholic_FINAL_150Pope St. John Paul II is one of the most beloved popes of all time. He touched the lives of millions.

But his impact is far from over.

JPII was a world-class philosopher. He taught us truths about ourselves, and humanity in general, in a way that made sense. He understood our deepest longings and turmoil. He could explain the inner workings of our heart in relation to God. JohannesPaul2-portrait

In a nutshell, he taught us how to be fully human through Jesus Christ.

But while most of us learned this from his speeches, encyclicals, and books, Andreas Widmer, former Swiss Guard and now Director of Entrepreneurship Programs at Catholic University of Americas’ Busch School of Business & Economics, received his instruction in person.

This giant of a man swore to protect and serve the Holy Father with his life.

And in return, he learned what it means to truly live. In fact, he wrote a book about it called The Pope & the CEO: John Paul II’s Leadership Lessons to a Young Swiss Guard.

In this special episode of the Art of Catholic, we’re going to:

  • Hear beautiful stories about what JPII was really like in person
  • Learn about the history and duties of the Swiss Guard
  • Discover the relationship between JPII’s famous Theology of the Body and the world of economics
  • Discuss how JPII’s view of poverty and the human person is necessary to understand the heart of Pope Francis
  • Hear this modern saint’s “simple” rule of life he practiced every day

You don’t get too many opportunities to hear personal witness about a saint. Andreas Widmer gives us that and much more!


8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life Cover ImageP.S. Don’t just listen to us talk about it. Do it! Grab your FREE copy of my quick guide to deeper prayer 8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life! It’s an easy step-by-step guide to help you rocket to God!

Don’t miss a show! Subscribe to The Art of Catholic by clicking this link and then clicking “View in iTunes” under the picture and then “Subscribe”! 

Love the show and want more people to hear the Catholic faith? Leave a review by clicking here and then the “View in iTunes” button under my picture. This pushes the show up the rankings and puts it in front of more people.

Android user? You can listen to The Art of Catholic on the Beyond Pod app from the Google Play Store.

Lourdes BasilicaWant to tour Catholic Europe’s most beautiful holy sites? Join Matthew on a  St. Paul Center pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain, Lourdes, and other amazing holy sites this October 23rd to November 1st. Click here for details.

035: Saints Who Battled Satan (and Won)! with Dr. Paul Thigpen

aka Stories That May Cause Goosebumps

catholic_FINAL_150Light the blessed candles, grab your crucifix, and find your biggest bottle of holy water.

My guest today on the Art of Catholic is author Dr. Paul Thigpen and our topic is spiritual warfare. In particular, we’re discussing his really fascinating book titled “Saints Who Battled Satan: 17 Holy Warriors Who Can Teach You How To Fight The Good Fight and Vanquish Your Ancient Enemy.

And I’m gonna tell you right now, this is no typical saint book. It’s pretty wild.

“Who is Paul Thigpen”, you ask?

He’s the editor of TAN Books and the best-selling author, co-author or compSebastiano_Ricci_058iler of forty-five titles. Among his most popular books are The Burden: A Warning of Things to Come and The Rapture Trap: A Catholic Response to End Times Fever.

Paul is a convert to the Catholic faith and has served the Church as an award-winning journalist, historian, apologist, catechist, and member of the National Advisory Council of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. His work has been translated into twelve languages (including Canadian).

And he’s an expeuntitled-1_1rt in spiritual warfare.

This episode is not meant to be sensationalistic. But that doesn’t mean the hair on the back of your neck won’t stand up from time to time. As St. Paul declares in Ephesians 6:12, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”

Satan is real. He wants to kill you. We must learn to fight. Who better to learn from than the saints who have battled and won?



P.S. Don’t forget to grab your FREE copy of my quick guide to deeper prayer 8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life Cover Image8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life! It’s an easy step-by-step guide to help you rocket to God!

Don’t miss a show! Subscribe to The Art of Catholic by clicking this link and then clicking “View in iTunes” under the picture and then “Subscribe”!

018: The Bible & the Church Fathers (Part 2)

catholic_FINAL_150Do you believe in the Trinity? Do you believe that Jesus Christ is both all God and all man at the same time – consubstantial with the Father? Do you believe the Bible is the Word of God?

Most of you are nodding your internal head, saying “Yes, Matt, of course we do.”

These are issues most Christians take for granted. We believe them because they are fundamental to our faith. We believe them because they are what have been taught to us, handed down from generation to generation.

But why?

The quick answer is very simple: Because of Christ. He founded the Catholic Church and gave the Apostles authority. But then what? Acts 1:20 tells us: “His office let another take.” In other words, their authority was passed on.

And many to whom they passed the torch were the men who, through the power and guidance of the Holy Spirit, formulated many of the doctrines and beliefs we now take for granted. The belief system of Christianity didn’t drop down out of the sky in a catechism. The truth that existed in its fullness in Jesus Christ was unpacked over the centuries.Ikone_Athanasius_von_Alexandria

And many of the guys that did that unpacking were the Fathers of the Church.

In this episode of “The Art of Catholic”, we’re going to finish what we started in Episode 17. (This is part 2 of “Introduction to the Fathers”, which is the first lesson in the Journey Through Scripture Bible study titled “The Bible and the Church Fathers.”)

We’ll discuss the development of doctrine and start to get to know a few of these towering figures of the faith. What you’re going to start to realize is that these men are not just historical figures. We call them “Fathers” because that’s what they are. They “father” us in the faith, leading us to Our Father in heaven.



8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life Cover ImageAll who have been lost were lost because they did not pray.” St. Alphonsus Liguori.

Don’t be lost! Grab your FREE copy of my quick guide to deeper prayer 8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life! 

It’s an easy step-by-step summary of the spiritual giants of the Church designed to help you rocket to God!