Few of us are geniuses, but all of us should be intellectuals. Brandon and Fr. Blake discuss the rich patrimony of the Catholic intellectual tradition and why we shouldn’t dumb down religion. They also offer tips on how to develop your own intellectual life.



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  • I am not a millenial, far from it but I loved your podcast Brandon and Father Blake. I have sent it to my grandchildren and one of our priests at our parish. I will post it on Facebook. Thank you so much. You are an inspiration. It is obvious to me that God is using you both at this time in history of our beautiful Church.

  • Thank you so much, Fr. Blake, for focusing on etymology, specifically as exhibited by J.R.R. Tolkien. As a Latin student myself, it is wonderful to see the links between languages and the importance of semantics. It reminded me of a quote from G.K. Chesterton’s The Ball and the Cross,” when MacIan says, “Why shouldn’t we quarrel about a word? What is the good of words if they aren’t important enough to quarrel over?… If you’re not going to argue about words, what are you going to argue about?” I really appreciate this podcast and your guys’ input and ideas. Looking forward eagerly to the next episode!

    • Well said, Luke! “Ball and the Cross” is one of my favorite GKC books, and I remember when I read that line, I thought, “How could anyone familiar with Church history deny McIan’s point?! Look at the early Church councils. Quarrels and even violent debates emerged over not just a single word but even single *letters* such as homoousios vs. homoiousios.” As you rightly say, words (and letters) all matter! Thanks for the great feedback.

    • Thank you so much. I thoroughly agree. Language is world and studying it helps us to unlock some of the most fascinating truths of reality. Stay tuned! A lot more etymology in the future. I promise!!!

  • I am the wrong demographic you are seeking, but am enjoyed the podcast. It is somewhat overwhelming to contemplate my gaps in culture and reading . I desire to grow in faith, holiness, know the bible in order to know Christ. Be that disciple of Christ who can defend the faith with love and vigor. To change the world by letting Christ change me . One of the strengths of the catholic church is the paradox, that it is shallow enough for babies to wade in and deep enough for scholars to swim in. I like that you are encouraging us to swim.

  • Brandon/Fr. Blake: your podcast was exceptionally helpful to me in my struggles in yearning to find my true purpose and becoming a saint. Your zeal, honesty, and shared struggles and victories give me such hope and clearer understanding of why I am here at this strategic time and that God will be faithful in leading me on the path to fruition of what He has put and stirred in my heart. God bless and prosper your paths that you are laying out that are calling many to desire and achieve our becoming saints so others will know that He is waiting to gather us into His beloved, compassionate heart. Shirley Bachmeier gmabach@aol.com

  • Thanks Brandon and Father Blake. I enjoyed the podcast. The piece that resonated with me very much is how the Catholic faith answers those first order questions of “Why am I here?” and “What is my purpose?” with “To be a saint” and not in the glib easy answer way but to truly wrestle with the challenges of our time, being an example of holiness, and calling others to holiness through/by loving them. This is tough stuff, challenging! Most young people are struggling with so much but mostly with lack of purpose. When they learn AND embrace their mission the garbage of the culture that is weighing them down falls away. Praying your podcast reaches many souls!

  • Thank you Brandon and Fr. Blake…..I thoroughly enjoyed this podcast and look forward to more. Fr. Blake, when I was teaching literature in middle school (before I became principal), I taught Norse and Greek Mythology, a basic intro to Beowulf, The Hobbit, an intro to Shakespeare, and more classic literature. I think that has become lost to us in some way….teaching the classics. I would love to see a revival!

  • Thank you Brandon and Fr Blake for this very educationally stimulating podcast. I have already ordered Augustine’s Confessions from Word on Fire, the Thomas Wood book is in my Amazon shopping cart, AND I pulled Beowulf from my book shelf to read (it’s been there for ages, probably read by one of my kids during high school or college)! I also forwarded your podcast on to several friends of mine. A job well done. Thank you both for sharing your God given charisms!

  • Loved all the podcasts Brandon and Father Blake but especially this one on Catholic and Intellectual! I believe I was blessed that my Junior High Religion teacher used Bishop Fulton Sheen’s book Life of Christ as our textbook for the year. I remember thinking how beautifully written it was, how deep and profound yet also so understandable and accessible it was for me as a teenager. I have reread it years later and still believe it to be such a powerful and beautifully written book! By being introduced to Bishop Sheen in High School I later came across his book The Seven Last Words which is a devotional I read and pray every year on Good Friday. There is a prayer after each little sermon on the words of Christ on the Cross and one can read the little booklet probably within 20 or 30 minutes so it’s short yet very profound. I’ve just discovered your Burrowshire podcast so I’ve been binge watching all 4 episodes tonight and have enjoyed them all – looking forward to the next one coming out. Thank You!

  • Loved this the second burrowshire podcast I have listened to today! I’m addicted now!
    This one on “Catholic and the intellect” was inspirational and given me a direction and a plan to become more understanding and thinking of the intellectual Catholicism. It’s been 40 years since I deeply and discernedly study topics or concepts of our beautiful faith and my love of history. Now in retired life I can get serious and take the time to devote to going deep and pondering God’s teaching.

  • Thank you so much for this podcast. Will you please recommend specific music to download by Bach, Mozart? Thank you!

  • Great podcast! I have a feeling Brandon’s list of books will be my reading list for 2021.

    Question: How would those of us practicing Catholics bring this into our more secularized jobs/careers without imposing/coercing it?

  • I’ve been listening to a few of your episodes and have been particularly struck by this idea of working to have a sense of “Catholic-ness” infused within our everyday lives – be it through the Liturgy of the Hours, structuring our lives around the liturgical life of the church and what-not. I don’t remember if it was in this particular episode or a different one, but you both discussed the benefits that can come from exposure to classics, notable painters and their religious works, classical music, and foundational authors in spiritual growth and deepening.

    While I don’t disagree that there can be great benefits in familiarizing ourselves with these works and using them to augment our religious development, I am interested in how contemporary artists might offer glimpses into how to be Catholic in our own time. There may be artists, musicians, and authors who are today creating the works that may become the classics of the future and I am interested in looking further into how we can see our religion reflected in contemporary works and not just classical ones. The spirit of the church is still alive and is see no reason why it wouldn’t be working in similar ways as it has in the past with artists and authors working today. Thoughts? Are either of you familiar with anything like this?

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