Pints With Aquinas

If you could sit down with St. Thomas Aquinas over a pint of beer and ask him any one question, what would it be? Every episode of Pints With Aquinas revolves around a question, a question that St. Thomas addresses in his most famous work, The Summa Theologica. So get your geek on, pull up a bar stool, and grab a cold one. Here we go!
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Jan 22, 2019

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This episode of PWA was recorded LIVE at FOCUS' SEEK conference in Indianapolis, IN earlier this month.

In this episode I sit down with the priests from Catholic Stuff You Should Know to discuss scrupulosity, and how to overcome it.


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Jan 19, 2019

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I sit down with Abigail Rine Favale for nearly 3 hours to discuss her unlikely conversion, why she no longer identifies as a feminist, and postmodernism.

So much postmodernism.


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Jan 15, 2019

Watch the next Matt Fradd Show here (click "set a reminder") this Friday at 8pm EST:

If you've never listened to Pints With Aquinas, today's episode is a GREAT place to begin.

In today's episode I'll share with you 5 contributions Aquinas made to metaphysics. 

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Jan 8, 2019

Today we talk all about Mary, the Mother of God. Enjoy!

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The error of Nestorius, who refused to acknowledge that Blessed Mary is the Mother of God, is likewise excluded. Both Creeds assert that the Son of God was born or was made flesh of the Virgin Mary. The woman of whom any person is born is called his mother, for the reason that she supplies the matter for human conception. Hence the Blessed Virgin Mary, who provided the matter for the conception of the Son of God, should be called the true mother of the Son of God. As far as the essence of motherhood is concerned, the energy whereby the matter furnished by a woman is formed, does not enter into the question. She who supplied matter to be formed by the Holy Spirit is no less a mother than a woman who supplies matter that is to be formed by the energy latent in male seed. If anyone insists on maintaining that the Blessed Virgin ought not to be called the Mother of God because flesh alone and not divinity was derived from her, as Nestorius contended, he clearly is not aware of what he is saying. A woman is not called a mother for the reason that everything that is in her child is derived from her. Man is made up of body and soul; and a man is what he is in virtue of his soul rather than in virtue of his body. But no man’s soul is derived from his mother. The soul is either created by God directly, as the true doctrine has it, or, if it were produced by transplanting, as some have fancied, it would be derived from the father rather than from the mother. For in the generation of other animals, according to the teaching of philosophers, the male gives the soul, the female gives the body.

Consequently, just as any woman is a mother from the fact that her child’s body is derived from her, so the Blessed Virgin Mary ought to be called the Mother of God if the body of God is derived from her. But we have to hold that it is the body of God, if it is taken up into the unity of the person of God’s Son, who is true God. Therefore all who admit that human nature was assumed by the Son of God into the unity of His person, must admit that the Blessed Virgin Mary is the Mother of God. But Nestorius, who denied that the person of God and of the man Jesus Christ was one, was forced by logical necessity to deny that the Virgin Mary was the Mother of God.

Jan 4, 2019

Many of you have asked me to interview Lizzie Reezay—who has well over 200,000 subscribers on Youtube! Well, I heard you, and did just that. We talk about what it was like converting from Protestantism to Catholicism in such a public way.

Learn more about Lizzie here.

See her Youtube channel here.

Jan 1, 2019

Today I'm joined around the bar table by Dr. Jennifer Frey to discuss happiness. What is it? How can we get it? Is it possible to have it perfectly in this life? We take a look at how happiness and virtue are connected and see what Aristotle, Boethius, and Aquinas have to say on the matter.

Here's the part in the Summa where Aquinas lists and explains what ultimately won't make us happy.

Check out Dr. Frey's podcast, Sacred and Profane Love here.

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Dec 21, 2018

In this bonus episode I discuss a whole bunch of awesome things.


The SEEK conference, Shazam!

Our upcoming pilgrimage to Rome, Boom!

Summa 365, Bam!

The Matt Fradd Show, Kapow!

Dec 18, 2018

Today I chat with Fr. James Brent O.P. about that very interesting line in the Catechism of the Catholic Church from St. Athanasius, "For the Son of God became man so that we might become God" (CCC 460).


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Dec 17, 2018

My 3 hour interview with Christopher West premieres tonight at 845 EST ... Click here to join the wait list!

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Dec 11, 2018

Today I sit down with theoretical particle physicist, Stephen Barr to discuss God, the Big Bang, and the Multiverse.

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Dec 5, 2018

Matt Fradd sits down with Dr. Paul Thigpen to discuss a whole host of interesting things: how he became an atheist at the age of 12; why he gave his life to Christ; his encounters with the Devil, and the current crisis in the Catholic Church.

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Dec 4, 2018

Today we're joined around the bar table by Dr. John Cuddeback, philosopher at Christendom College, to discuss the importance and beauty of friendship.

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Check out Dr. Cuddeback's book, True Friendship: Where Virtue Becomes Happiness 

Also, see Dr. Cuddeback's website here.



Nov 27, 2018

Today I share with you 7 reasons I love Thomas Aquinas and you should to.

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Nov 23, 2018

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Nov 20, 2018

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In today's episode of Pints With Aquinas we're joined around the bar table by Dr. David Bertaina to discuss how to evanelize Muslims. We take a look at a lesser known work of Thomas' called, in English, Reasons for the Faith Against Muslim Objections to the Cantor of Antioch Which, btw, I just paid to have turned into an audiobook. Patrons, have at it. It's free for y'all.


Nov 13, 2018

Hey all,

For the next 2 weeks we're doing a promotion. If you become a $10 or more patron of Pints With Aquinas here, I'll send you all that other free stuff AND I'll send you a limited edition Thomas Aquinas magnet for your car ... AND I'll send you a super awkward private video message.


Today I interview Dr. Brant Pitre. Here's a bit about him:

Dr. Brant Pitre is Distinguished Research Professor of Scripture at the Augustine Institute in Denver, CO. He earned his Ph.D. in Theology from the University of Notre Dame, where he specialized in the study of the New Testament and ancient Judaism. He is the author of several articles and books, including: Jesus, the Tribulation, and the End of the Exile (Baker Academic, 2005), Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist (Image Books, 2011), Jesus the Bridegroom (Image Books, 2014), Jesus and the Last Supper (Eerdmans, 2015), and The Case for Jesus (Image, 2016). Dr. Pitre is an extremely enthusiastic and engaging speaker who lectures regularly across the United States. He has produced dozens of Bible studies on CD, DVD, and MP3, in which he explores the biblical foundations of Catholic faith and theology. He currently lives in Gray, Louisiana, with his wife Elizabeth, and their five children.


Here's the entire article I read from today from Aquinas:

Article 4. Whether Christ should have committed His doctrine to writing?
Objection 1. It would seem that Christ should have committed His doctrine to writing. For the purpose of writing is to hand down doctrine to posterity. Now Christ's doctrine was destined to endure for ever, according to Luke 21:33: "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words shall not pass away." Therefore it seems that Christ should have committed His doctrine to writing.

Objection 2. Further, the Old Law was a foreshadowing of Christ, according to Hebrews 10:1: "The Law has [Vulgate: 'having'] a shadow of the good things to come." Now the Old Law was put into writing by God, according to Exodus 24:12: "I will give thee" two "tables of stone and the law, and the commandments which I have written." Therefore it seems that Christ also should have put His doctrine into writing.

Objection 3. Further, to Christ, who came to enlighten them that sit in darkness (Luke 1:79), it belonged to remove occasions of error, and to open out the road to faith. Now He would have done this by putting His teaching into writing: for Augustine says (De Consensu Evang. i) that "some there are who wonder why our Lord wrote nothing, so that we have to believe what others have written about Him. Especially do those pagans ask this question who dare not blame or blaspheme Christ, and who ascribe to Him most excellent, but merely human, wisdom. These say that the disciples made out the Master to be more than He really was when they said that He was the Son of God and the Word of God, by whom all things were made." And farther on he adds: "It seems as though they were prepared to believe whatever He might have written of Himself, but not what others at their discretion published about Him." Therefore it seems that Christ should have Himself committed His doctrine to writing.

On the contrary, No books written by Him were to be found in the canon of Scripture.

I answer that, It was fitting that Christ should not commit His doctrine to writing. First, on account of His dignity: for the more excellent the teacher, the more excellent should be his manner of teaching. Consequently it was fitting that Christ, as the most excellent of teachers, should adopt that manner of teaching whereby His doctrine is imprinted on the hearts of His hearers; wherefore it is written (Matthew 7:29) that "He was teaching them as one having power." And so it was that among the Gentiles, Pythagoras and Socrates, who were teachers of great excellence, were unwilling to write anything. For writings are ordained, as to an end, unto the imprinting of doctrine in the hearts of the hearers.

Secondly, on account of the excellence of Christ's doctrine, which cannot be expressed in writing; according to John 21:25: "There are also many other things which Jesus did: which, if they were written everyone, the world itself, I think, would not be able to contain the books that should be written." Which Augustine explains by saying: "We are not to believe that in respect of space the world could not contain them . . . but that by the capacity of the readers they could not be comprehended." And if Christ had committed His doctrine to writing, men would have had no deeper thought of His doctrine than that which appears on the surface of the writing.

Thirdly, that His doctrine might reach all in an orderly manner: Himself teaching His disciples immediately, and they subsequently teaching others, by preaching and writing: whereas if He Himself had written, His doctrine would have reached all immediately.

Hence it is said of Wisdom (Proverbs 9:3) that "she hath sent her maids to invite to the tower." It is to be observed, however, that, as Augustine says (De Consensu Evang. i), some of the Gentiles thought that Christ wrote certain books treating of the magic art whereby He worked miracles: which art is condemned by the Christian learning. "And yet they who claim to have read those books of Christ do none of those things which they marvel at His doing according to those same books. Moreover, it is by a Divine judgment that they err so far as to assert that these books were, as it were, entitled as letters to Peter and Paul, for that they found them in several places depicted in company with Christ. No wonder that the inventors were deceived by the painters: for as long as Christ lived in the mortal flesh with His disciples, Paul was no disciple of His."

Reply to Objection 1. As Augustine says in the same book: "Christ is the head of all His disciples who are members of His body. Consequently, when they put into writing what He showed forth and said to them, by no means must we say that He wrote nothing: since His members put forth that which they knew under His dictation. For at His command they, being His hands, as it were, wrote whatever He wished us to read concerning His deeds and words."

Reply to Objection 2. Since the old Law was given under the form of sensible signs, therefore also was it fittingly written with sensible signs. But Christ's doctrine, which is "the law of the spirit of life" (Romans 8:2), had to be "written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in the fleshly tables of the heart," as the Apostle says (2 Corinthians 3:3).

Reply to Objection 3. Those who were unwilling to believe what the apostles wrote of Christ would have refused to believe the writings of Christ, whom they deemed to work miracles by the magic art.

Nov 6, 2018

Pints With Aquinas is funded by listeners like you, support on Patreon here.

Here's my previous episode on the problem of evil.

Here's how Aquinas formulated the problem of evil:

"It seems that God does not exist; because if one of two contraries be infinite, the other would be altogether destroyed. But the word "God" means that He is infinite goodness. If, therefore, God existed, there would be no evil discoverable; but there is evil in the world. Therefore God does not exist."

A bit about my guest Eleonore Stump:

Eleonore Stump is the Robert J. Henle Professor of Philosophy at Saint Louis University, where she has taught since 1992. She is also Honorary Professor at Wuhan University and at the Logos Institute, St. Andrews, and she is a Professorial Fellow at Australian Catholic University. She has published extensively in philosophy of religion, contemporary metaphysics, and medieval philosophy. Her books include her major study Aquinas (Routledge, 2003), her extensive treatment of the problem of evil, Wandering in Darkness: Narrative and the Problem of Suffering (Oxford, 2010), and her far-reaching examination of human redemption, Atonement (Oxford, 2018). She has given the Gifford Lectures (Aberdeen, 2003), the Wilde lectures (Oxford, 2006), the Stewart lectures (Princeton, 2009) and the Stanton lectures (Cambridge, 2018). She is past president of the Society of Christian Philosophers, the American Catholic Philosophical Association, and the American Philosophical Association, Central Division; and she is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Oct 30, 2018

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Today we discuss the virtue of studiousness and the vice of curiosity.

Aquinas discusses in this in the Secunda secundae of the Summa (see below).

Here are some articles discussing the sin of curiosity:

A Monastic Vice For The Internet Age

Curiosity As the Enemy of Wonder

Here's what Aquinas wrote:


The knowledge of truth, strictly speaking, is good, but it may be evil accidentally, by reason of some result, either because one takes pride in knowing the truth, according to 1 Corinthians 8:1, "Knowledge puffeth up," or because one uses the knowledge of truth in order to sin.

On the other hand, the desire or study in pursuing the knowledge of truth may be right or wrong.

First, when one tends by his study to the knowledge of truth as having evil accidentally annexed to it, for instance those who study to know the truth that they may take pride in their knowledge. Hence Augustine says (De Morib. Eccl. 21): "Some there are who forsaking virtue, and ignorant of what God is, and of the majesty of that nature which ever remains the same, imagine they are doing something great, if with surpassing curiosity and keenness they explore the whole mass of this body which we call the world. So great a pride is thus begotten, that one would think they dwelt in the very heavens about which they argue." On like manner, those who study to learn something in order to sin are engaged in a sinful study, according to the saying of Jeremiah 9:5, "They have taught their tongue to speak lies, they have labored to commit iniquity."

Secondly, there may be sin by reason of the appetite or study directed to the learning of truth being itself inordinate; and this in four ways. First, when a man is withdrawn by a less profitable study from a study that is an obligation incumbent on him; hence Jerome says [Epist. xxi ad Damas]: "We see priests forsaking the gospels and the prophets, reading stage-plays, and singing the love songs of pastoral idylls." Secondly, when a man studies to learn of one, by whom it is unlawful to be taught, as in the case of those who seek to know the future through the demons. This is superstitious curiosity, of which Augustine says (De Vera Relig. 4): "Maybe, the philosophers were debarred from the faith by their sinful curiosity in seeking knowledge from the demons."

Thirdly, when a man desires to know the truth about creatures, without referring his knowledge to its due end, namely, the knowledge of God. Hence Augustine says (De Vera Relig. 29) that "in studying creatures, we must not be moved by empty and perishable curiosity; but we should ever mount towards immortal and abiding things."

Fourthly, when a man studies to know the truth above the capacity of his own intelligence, since by so doing men easily fall into error: wherefore it is written (Sirach 3:22): "Seek not the things that are too high for thee, and search not into things above thy ability . . . and in many of His works be not curious," and further on (Sirach 3:26), "For . . . the suspicion of them hath deceived many, and hath detained their minds in vanity." - ST II-II Q. 167, A. 1.

Oct 23, 2018

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Today I interview Fr. Chris Pietraszko about what Aquinas had to say about anger (or wrath). 

Fr. Christopher is a priest in the diocese of London, Ontario, Canada. He devotes himself to on-going studies and an apologetic ministry.

Check out Fr. Pietraszko's podcast, Fides et Ratio, here.



Oct 16, 2018

Here is the very first episode of The Matt Fradd Show (you should watch it here) in which I interview (for nearly 3 hours!) Dan Mattson, author of the book, Why I Don't Call Myself Gay.

In it we discuss The Catholic Church's teachings on homosexuality, why "gay" is an unhelpful thing to call people and how to respond to transgenderism. ... oh, and we also discuss Fr. James Martin and his approach to this whole issue.

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Oct 16, 2018

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Oct 9, 2018

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Today on Pints With Aquinas I interview Fr. Gregory Pine about papal infallibility!

Fr. Gregory Pine, O.P. serves as the Assistant Director for Campus Outreach for the Thomistic Institute. Born and raised near Philadelphia, PA, he later attended the Franciscan University of Steubenville, studying mathematics and humanities. Upon graduating, he entered the Dominican Province of St. Joseph in 2010 and was ordained in 2016. “It was St. Thomas Aquinas who first introduced me to the Order, and by his prayers that I grew in knowledge and love of its saving mission and ultimately came to find my happiness in Order of Friars Preachers.”

Learn more on Papal Infallibility here.


Here's the section we read from the ST:

I answer that, Wherever there are several authorities directed to one purpose, there must needs be one universal authority over the particular authorities, because in all virtues and acts the order is according to the order of their ends (Ethic. i, 1,2). Now the common good is more Godlike than the particular good. Wherefore above the governing power which aims at a particular good there must be a universal governing power in respect of the common good, otherwise there would be no cohesion towards the one object. Hence since the whole Church is one body, it behooves, if this oneness is to be preserved, that there be a governing power in respect of the whole Church, above the episcopal power whereby each particular Church is governed, and this is the power of the Pope. Consequently those who deny this power are called schismatics as causing a division in the unity of the Church. Again, between a simple bishop and the Pope there are other degrees of rank corresponding to the degrees of union, in respect of which one congregation or community includes another; thus the community of a province includes the community of a city, and the community of a kingdom includes the community of one province, and the community of the whole world includes the community of one kingdom.

ST Supp. Q. 40, A. 6.

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Oct 2, 2018

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Sep 25, 2018

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The prayer we read from today:

Prayer for the Wise Ordering of One's Life

(Written by Thomas Aquinas, tranlated by Paul Murray OP, from his excellent book Aquinas at Prayer: The Bible, Mysticism, and Poetry.)

O merciful God, whatever is pleasing to you, may I ardently desire, wisely pursue, truly recognize, and bring to perfect completion.

For the praise and glory of your name put order into my life, and grant that I may know what it is you require me to do, and help me to achieve whatever is fitting and necessary for the good of my soul.

May my way, Lord, be yours entirely, upright and perfect, failing in neither prosperity nor adversity so that, in prosperity, I give you thanks, and in adversity serve patients, neither exalted in the former not dejected in the latter.

May I not rejoice in anything unless it leads me to you, nor be saddened by anything unless it turns me from you. May I not desire to please or fear to displease anyone but you.

May all passing things become worthless to me on your account, and all things that are yours be dear to me, and you, God, above all things.

May all joy without you leave me tired and weary, And may I not desire anything apart from you.

May all work that is done for you delight me, Lord, and all repose not centered on your presence be wearisome.

Let me, my God, direct my heart to you often and let me grieve over my failure with determination to change.

Make me, my God, humble without pretense, cheerful without frivolity,
sad without dejection, mature without heaviness, quick-witted without levity, truthful without duplicity.

Let me fear you without despair, and hope in you without presumption.

Let me correct my neighbor without hypocrisy, and without pride edify him by word and example: obedient without contradiction, patient without murmuring.

Give me, dearest God, a vigilant heart which no distracting thought can lure away from you.

Give me a noble heart which no unworthy desire can ever debase. Give me an unconquered heart which no tribulation can fatigue. Give me a free heart which no violent temptation can enslave. Give me an upright heart which no perverse intention can hold fast.

Grant me, Lord my God, intelligence in knowing you, diligence in seeking you, wisdom in finding you, conversation pleasing to you, perseverance in confidently waiting for you, and confidence in finally embracing you.

Grant that as penance I may be afflicted with your hardships,
As grace, make use along the way, of your favors, as glory, delight in your joys in the fatherland.



Sep 20, 2018

Hey all, thanks for listening to this bonus episode.

Be sure to check out Kiernan's website to help you with your social media stuff at

Here's that amazing video Matt Walsh recorded on the Internet.

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