Tag Archives: my writing

Two Interviews: Suffering Video and Wisdom Radio

Last week, I got to speak with Bob Krebs on “Catholic Forum” out of the Diocese of Wilmington about my book on Suffering. It aired on Relevant Radio and Bob recorded it as video and put it on YouTube for you:

Yesterday morning, I appeared on Spirit Mornings Catholic Radio out of Omaha with my friends Bruce and Jen. We got to talk about the Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture series and my new volume on Wisdom of Solomon. It was early and it was a fun conversation. Check it out:

My Post on Catholic Bible Study at the Verbum Blog

As a blogger known as “Catholic Bible Student,” I felt honored to be asked to write a blog post for the Verbum Blog on “Catholic Bible Study.” So, while I know most of my blog posts show up here, I thought my readers would not mind if I did a guest column somewhere else as long as I provided an excerpt and a link. Over at Logos/Verbum/Faithlife (providers of the best Bible software known to man), they have been doing a series of posts on the distinctive nature of Bible study done by different denominations. So far, they have posts on:

St Jerome by Bernardo Strozzi – Gallerie Accademia

They needed a Catholic take, and I’m glad I could help. Of course, the post comes with a hefty helping of links to Verbum-provided electronic resources that can help further your journey in studying the Bible, along with references to Dei Verbum and Verbum Domini. Here’s an excerpt from the beginning of my post:

Catholics love the Bible. From the Easter Sunday stroll on the road to Emmaus when the risen Jesus conducted the very first Christian Bible study—“he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures” (Luke 24:45)—to today, Christians have always been drawn to the Lord through the sacred page.

Catholics are conscious of abiding in a millennia-old tradition that is mediated by Jesus and moderated by the successors of the apostles, that is, the bishops. As the Second Vatican Council taught, “It is clear therefore that, in the supremely wise arrangement of God, sacred Tradition, Sacred Scripture, and the Magisterium of the Church are so connected and associated that one of them cannot stand without the others” (Dei Verbum 10).

Since the time of St. Jerome, the patron of Catholic Bible study, we have been told that ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ.

You can read the full post here: https://blog.verbum.com/2024/03/catholic-bible-study/

Interview on Suffering with Church Life Today Podcast

I was recently interviewed by Leonard DeLorenzo on the Church Life Today Podcast regarding my new book on Suffering.

This is a summary of our conversation from their site:

Suffering is universal. But how do we understand suffering? Does it have meaning? Can it have meaning? And most of all, what is the meaning of suffering in Christian life? Questions like these inform the work of my guest today, Dr. Mark Giszczak, author of the new book Suffering: What Every Catholic Should Know. Dr. Giszczak is Professor of Sacred Scripture at the Augustine Institute Graduate School of Theology, where he teaches a course on the Theology of Suffering that gave rise to this new book. In our discussion today we will talk about whether and how God suffers, how Christians might suffer well, obstacles to suffering well, and the importance of confronting rather than perpetually running from death.

Here’s the link to the episode: https://churchlifetoday.osvpodcasts.com/2061699/14711091

Interviews on Wisdom and Suffering

Yesterday, I appeared on Catholic Faith Network, talking about my new commentary on Wisdom of Solomon (starting at 13:07):

CFN Live – March 7, 2024 from Catholic Faith Network on Vimeo.

I also appeared on the Busted Halo Show with Fr. Dave Dwyer talking about Suffering: What Every Catholic Should Know on SiriusXM: https://bustedhalo.com/radio-shows/thursday-march-7-2024

More Interviews on Suffering

  1. I did a written interview for Catholic World Report. Here’s an excerpt:

CWR: How did the book come about?

Mark Giszczak: This book started as a course I taught called “The Theology of Suffering.” Suffering, of course, is universal. Everybody suffers. But I was interested in working on this topic from a theological angle since I had seen that a little bit of theological thinking about it could go a long way.

So many professions–from medicine to psychology to entertainment–are dedicated to relieving suffering, but I wanted to explain what to do when all the therapeutic options have been exhausted. When my suffering cannot be taken away, what then?

CWR: The book is part of the What Every Catholic Should Know series. Why is suffering a topic that every Catholic should be educated in?

Giszczak: Everyone experiences sufferings, so everyone should know about it. Sadly, I think many people just try to avoid the topic, but life does not let us get off so easy. When we run from suffering, it will eventually chase us down and find us. So, if suffering is inevitable, then maybe we should look it in the face rather than run from it. Jesus even calls us to “take up our cross” and follow after him. But how? How do we do that? In this book, I try to explain how Christian life is truly “cross-shaped.” We are meant to experience both suffering and joy at the same time.

2. I was interviewed by Drew the Catholic (just yesterday!):

3. I appeared on the Cordial Catholic podcast in both audio and video formats:

4. I also laid down some audio tracks for the Amen App from the Augustine Institute (a free prayer app):

Interview on Outside the Walls Podcast

I was recently interviewed by T.L. Putnam on his podcast entitled “Outside the Walls.” It always makes me think of the great basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls in Rome. I have been on his show before, but this time we’re talking about my new commentary on the Wisdom of Solomon in the CCSS series. Check it out:

Wisdom of Solomon Book Release Day!

Wisdom of Solomon Baker Academic

Hooray! My commentary on the Wisdom of Solomon in the Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture is now released as of today, February 13, 2024.

Description of the Book

The Wisdom of Solomon is the first volume published in the Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture, Old Testament series. The commentary offers a robust introduction to the historical and theological background of the often-overlooked Wisdom of Solomon, the RSV-2CE translation of the biblical text, cross references, Catechism and Lectionary references, and a detailed interpretation of each passage in the 19-chapter book. It also includes helpful sidebars on biblical background and important references in the living tradition of the Church. This commentary guides the Catholic reader in a thorough and careful study of the Wisdom of Solomon.

I hope you all pick up a copy, read it, enjoy it and learn something from it!

Where to Find the Book

  1. Baker: https://bakeracademic.com/p/Wisdom-of-Solomon-Mark-Giszczak/542807
  2. Amazon: https://a.co/d/5ufZiPn
  3. Soon, Verbum software:  https://verbum.com/product/252803/wisdom-of-solomon

Max Weber on 2 Thess 3:10 – If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.

A few years ago, I published an article in the Catholic Biblical Quarterly on 2 Thessalonians 3:10 where it is stated “If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.” My essential argument is that the “let him not eat” statement was a formal indication of excommunication for persons who refused to work.

Little did I know that the inimitable Max Weber–one of the towering intellectuals of the early twentieth century–weighed in on this passage himself:

Almost all prophets have been supported by voluntary gifts. The well-known saying of St. Paul, “If a man does not work, neither shall he eat,” was directed against the swarm of charismatic missionaries. It obviously has nothing to do with a positive valuation of economic activity for its own sake, but only lays it down as a duty of each individual somehow to provide for his own support. This because he realized that the purely charismatic parable of the lilies of the field was not capable of literal application, but at best “taking no thought for the morrow” could be hoped for. (Max Weber, The Theory of Social and Economic Organization [New York: Free Press, 1967] p. 363.)

Is he right? I don’t know, but he offers an intriguing theory. Were there indolent “charismatic missionaries” hoping for a handout and refusing to do any real work? Well, 2 Thessalonians does not provide evidence for this, but the Didache does! This absurdly early Christian document (first century!) was lost for centuries, but rediscovered in the 1873 hiding in a monastery library somewhere in Constantinople. In it, we find the following almost humorous warning:

In regard to ‘apostles’ and ‘prophets,’ act according to the doctrine of the Gospel. Let every apostle who comes to you be received as the Lord. But he shall not remain more than one day. But, if necessary, let him remain a second day. But, if he stays for three, he is a false prophet. And when the apostle departs, let him take only enough bread to last until he reaches shelter; but, if he asks for money, he is a false prophet. (Didache 11:3-6; Francis X. Glimm, “The Didache or Teaching of the Twelve Apostles,” in The Apostolic Fathers, trans. Francis X. Glimm, Joseph M.-F. Marique, and Gerald G. Walsh, vol. 1 of The Fathers of the Church (Washington, DC: The Catholic University of America Press, 1947), 180.)

I don’t know if Max Weber was aware of this text from the Didache, but it does support his interpretation of 2 Thess 3:10. Perhaps there were wandering “apostles” and “prophets” some of whom were legit and some of whom were trying to get a free lunch. The Didache puts a firm limit of two days on any prophet’s stay–any more and he’s false! I don’t know if these prophetic freeloaders really came in “swarms” as Weber supposes, but they must have really been walking around the first-century Christian world, such as it was.