Robert Barron | – How to Fall in Love — Bishop Barron’s Sunday Sermon

Friends, our readings this weekend have to do with biblical anthropology—or who we are in the presence of God—and the Christian understanding of marriage. A basic intuition of the Bible is that we begin not with the individual, but with community. And marriage is the most beautiful and intense form of this friendship God desires for us.

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Bishop Robert Barron These are brief and insightful commentaries on faith and culture by Catholic theologian and author Bishop Robert Barron. The videos complement his weekly sermons posted and podcasted at

Comment (42)

  1. Beautiful exegesis which lays out why marriage for us Catholics must never be diluted for the convenience of the secular world. I was the reader at Mass today and, as a married person, what a privilege it was. Thank you, Bishop Barron, for one of your gems.

  2. Thanks and blessings Bishop Barron and blessings to all of your listeners! Your comments regarding the philosophies of Locke & Hobbes made me ponder a question that I'd like to throw out there in the hopes that someone that knows more can clarify: could it be that the philosophies of Locke & Hobbes (and others I'm sure) stressing the individuality of people came about precisely to contradict Catholic social teaching stressing community? I don't know enough about Locke & Hobbes to opine but I doubt it was mere coincidence. Would anyone reading this doubt that current philosophies around gender ideology/marriage/abortion (just to name three…) are meant to contradict and discredit Catholic social teaching? Blessings!

  3. I know the Bishop does not usually answer these comments, but this week's gospel always makes me wonder: when in Jewish history did it become common to have multiple (hundreds, if they so chose) wives. Certainly this does not sound 'creation-based' – yet no where in the OT was it frowned upon. Conversely, by the time of Jesus this did not seem to be the practice – and he never mentions it as something that should not be done. As a biblical scholar, do you know when, and why, this practice went 'out of favor'?

  4. Most Reverend Bishop Barron: Early in your homily, you stated that Adam named all the creatures that God had "formed out of the ground," thus gaining dominion over all the animals. But when God had "cast a deep sleep on the man…The Lord God then [had] built up into a woman the rib that He had taken from the man." You skipped the verse that had Adam say, "…this one shall be called 'woman'…" By naming the animals, Adam had gained dominion over them. Would not Adam also gain some sort of dominion over the one who was bone of his bones, and flesh of his flesh when he named her 'woman'? Does St. Paul's comments in his first letter to the Corinthians apply? …And with your spirit.

  5. Conservatives are concerned with the individual because rights and laws are protected on an individual basis. Collectivist mindsets are concerned merely with a relativistic and arbitrarily conceived greater good and can therefore treat individuals immorally as long as they perceive a greater good comes about from it. Rights based on the individual prevents immoral calculations based on the ends justifying the means.

    This conservative position is not at all contrary to the family being the basic building block of society. Society's come together based on families, laws within society are crafted to protect individuals.

  6. Unfortunately, I get the impression that the Pope Francis would disagree. Indeed that the Pope thinks that that's an anachronistic and rigid interpretation. What is more, Pope Francis is looking to change that interpretation within his pontifical reign and that the Synod of Synod will agree with him.

  7. I was thinking about this very thing just this morning. My thoughts were a little different … that although it might be not good for man to be alone, as we evolve and women become independent, women are discovering that it is in fact better for them to be alone than held captive in submission to man.

  8. It is providential that this homily and these texts come to us on the Sunday the bishops call "pro-life Sunday," the first Sunday in October. This month we witness to the primacy of family as foundation of society and the value of every human life.

  9. O Lord may we receive our vocation from you, marriage, priesthood , sisterhood, layman… to do Your work…

    “from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by every joint with which it is supplied, when each part is working properly, makes bodily growth and upbuilds itself in love.”
    ‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭4:16‬ ‭RSV-CI‬‬

  10. I am a life-long bachelor, 63, and virgin to boot. I also have severe cerebral palsy, which affects my psychology.
    Every year, when the Gospel turns to divorce a marriage, I sit through the homily and wonder how I can apply it to my life. I remember the first time a heard about the theology of the body. The priest began by telling us our bodies were good. My reaction was my body was my enemy. It has betrayed me all my life. For example, I have to repeat or spell words every day because my speech is so poor. That's life for me.
    Now, your excellency began your talk by citing Aristotle's view that man is part of a polis. That, you said, was basic to Christian theology and you're the expert.
    But my experience and the experience of the disabled throughout history is that the polis is not that friendly towards the disabled. Even today, you have the right opposing laws and treaties to recognize as full citizens and you have "progressives"' who think aborting babies with genetic defects is a good thing. CP is not genetic but I know a slippery slope when I see one I see one.
    I know Locke's view of society is not Christian because you're the bishop here. (That's not sarcastic.) But the modern disability rights movement, which the Church supports for the most part, owes a debt to Locke even though he had no thought about the disabled as he
    I admire you a lot. I only wrote this because I wanted you to get my reaction even though it's highly visceral.

  11. So true. The fact that people put their individual rights before everything in this age and time may be responsible for many marriages ending in divorce. Everone is trying to pull the blanket their way by expecting their spouse to make them happy rather than the contrary. This is the hardness of heart because of which Moses allowed divorce in the Old Testament. Certainly Christain partners who put Jesus- Agape at the center of their marriage stand a better chance to stay together in a self-giving, happy relationship.

  12. I am not a Catholic but in the last year have learned a lot from different Catholic Priests and teachers is YouTube. As a result I have at times tries to straighten out other Protestants misconceptions of Catholic doctrine. I recently stated to one friend that I wish that the Anglican Church of which I am a member, hadn’t softened so much on permitting divorce. He said that may be so, but “I have a female friend whose priest wouldn’t give her an annulment unless she paid the church thousands of dollars. Does this ever happen and if so, how and why? Blessing

  13. How is there a conflict between individual rights and the need for community? I don't perceive that one excludes the other. Individual rights are important … otherwise, one can be subjugated against ones will and told that it is for the benefit of the whole. But individual rights WITHIN community, marriage, etc. ought to be a given.

  14. Individuals who clamor for their own rights are the curse of modern society. Humanity has no real dominion over anything. It thinks it does, and in the liberal mind, it has dominion over anyone with a different set of values or opinions. The hypocrisy of the left is best exemplified in their selfish desire for "choice". To demand the choice to murder another human being, their own child, is so far from grace that it can only be described as "God-forsakenesss". To murder another life to satisfy your own will is Satanic and against God. Good luck with that.

  15. This is one of the best expressions of sacramental marriage I have ever heard – particularly the origin of there Transcendent third , which my wife and I have expressed as Christ being the third partner in our marriage. This was only one of the many lessons learned as a result of our membership of the Schoenstatt Family Movement

  16. Bishop, I don't know if someone else has commented this and I don't want to repeat others. As you said, the "one Flesh" of marriage becomes literal in a child of that marriage. As far as recognizing a Love that is greater than the one between Man and Woman, would not the child also be a literalization of the Transcendent Third? Not that the baby is God; let me clarify in a roundabout way. The Love that the parents have for the child is an image of Our Father's Love for us. Man and Woman come closest to what is meant by "made in the image of God" not only by this act of Creation, but also of devotional Love to this third Being. If that is the case, then the fulfillment/completion of God's Love is to be found in carrying out parental Love; or from the opposite perspective, the Love we have for God is effected into the world, becomes "real," in Love for the child. I doubt I explained this thought very well, but hopefully you see what I mean.