About

Join Bishop Barron and more than 15,000 evangelists from around the world

Bishop Barron has spoken about his dream of evolving Word on Fire from a ministry into a movement. The first step of that process is to form a community of evangelists who share the same mission and desire to proclaim Christ to the culture using beauty, goodness, and truth.

This was the primary motive behind the establishment of the Word on Fire Institute, an easy-to-use digital platform offering members specialized training, community discussions, live presentations, and more. The Institute launched on October 1, 2018—the feast day of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, Word on Fire’s heavenly patroness.

Now, you can take courses in theology, philosophy, evangelization, and culture from Bishop Barron and the Word on Fire Institute Fellows on any of your devices.

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Courses

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The 8 Principles of Word on Fire

Learn the animating principles of the Word on Fire movement and the guiding lights of the Word on Fire Institute. These are the foundational pillars of our spirituality of evangelization.
Fellow Icon Jared Zimmerer

The People You Will Meet

Knowing your audience is very important in effective evangelization. In this course, Fr. Stephen Gadberry distinguishes the different types of people you will likely meet. His advice is based on years of experience as a Catholic priest engaging people about the faith. This course will give you the practical skills to more effectively evangelize today’s world.

Fellow Icon Fr. Stephen Gadberry

Happiness and the Meaning of Life

In this course, Dr. Jennifer Frey teaches us about what true happiness is and how morality and virtue play a part in achieving it. Referring to Aristotle, St. Thomas Aquinas, and modern figures like Elizabeth Anscombe, Dr. Frey demonstrates the link between morality and the meaning of life. All people seek meaning in life and as evangelists we must be able to discuss the depth of this universal question.

Fellow Icon Dr. Jennifer Frey
Saint John Henry Newman

John Henry Newman:

The Greatest Catholic Theologian Since Aquinas

In this 12-part course, Bishop Barron examines Newman’s many theological contributions, which are important in understanding Vatican II and in addressing the challenge of modernity. Participants will be introduced to Newman by looking at his most significant texts: his autobiography Apologia Pro Vita Sua, the theologically meaningful Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine, the educationally pertinent The Idea of a University, and the challenging An Essay in Aid of a Grammar of Assent.

Fellow Icon Bishop Robert Barron
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To the Peripheries!

In this course, Fr. Damian Ference will take us through numerous examples from the Gospels, his own life, and the philosophy of several saints on ways in which we evangelize. Each of these examples are modeled on the life of Christ.

Fellow Icon Fr. Damian Ference
Hans Von Balthasar

The Theology of Hans Urs von Balthasar

Hans Urs von Balthasar was one of the greatest Catholic theologians of the twentieth century. Henri de Lubac called him the “most cultured man in Europe.” The thought of this highly prolific intellectual was unique, profound, orthodox, and, through and through, Christocentric.

Fellow Icon Bishop Robert Barron
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Reaching the Indifferent

“Man no longer wishes to reflect on his relationship with God because he himself intends to become God,” assessed Robert Cardinal Sarah in his acclaimed book God or Nothing. Indeed, in this hyper-individualistic age characterized by spreading religious disaffiliation and relativism, his diagnosis seems spot on.

Fellow Icon Dr. Matt Nelson
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Digital Summit 2019:

Evangelizing the Unaffiliated

Jared Zimmerer and Dr. Matt Nelson kicked off the first-ever Word on Fire Institute Digital Summit with a discussion about the mission of the Institute and their favorite moments and takeaways from the interviews.

Fellow Icon Jared Zimmerer and Dr. Matt Nelson
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Imaginative Apologetics

How do we share the faith in a culture where many people don’t understand what we mean by words like “sin” or “salvation”—and where the media constantly bombards us with the idea that the teachings of the Church are irrelevant, outdated, or bigoted?

Fellow Icon Dr. Holly Ordway
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How “Nones” Can Misread the Bible

Catholics believe along with St. Paul that the Bible is “God-breathed” (2 Tim. 3:16). But with the growing number of religiously unaffiliated people in the world, our culture’s understanding of the Bible and its contents is more lacking and skewed than perhaps ever before.

Fellow Icon Dr. Anthony Pagliarini
Savaoph's God the Father

Seven Myths About the Catholic Church

There are many myths about the Catholic Church that are popular in today’s culture. In the following course, Dr. Christopher Kaczor highlights the big seven myths, distinguishing fact from fiction about Catholicism. This course will help you better address many controversial topics from contraception to women and the priesthood.

Fellow Icon Dr. Christopher Kaczor
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Christian Community as Leaven for the World

Why is community so important to Christian life and evangelization? What are some practical ways we can increase fellowship among our own neighborhoods and parishes?

Fellow Icon Leah Libresco Sargeant

The Evangelical Spirituality of Thomas Merton

Thomas Merton was one of the greatest spiritual writers of the last century. Despite his personal struggles, he inspired many people to seek holiness by applying the wisdom of monasticism to life outside the monastery. In this course, Jared Zimmerer explains Merton’s evangelical spirituality and stresses its significance today.

Fellow Icon Jared Zimmerer

Re-enchanting the Secular

Secularism is the predominate worldview in the West. However, it does not answer the deepest longing of the human heart. In this course, Dr. Petrusek explains how Catholics can save Secularism from itself.

Fellow Icon Dr. Matthew Petrusek
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The Journal

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Evangelization & Culture, the Journal of

the Word on Fire Institute, is published

quarterly and offered exclusively to Word

on Fire Institute Members. It exists to be

a tangible representation of the Word on

Fire Institute’s mission and goal: to lead

with beauty in order to bring others to the

knowledge of truth. It features academic

writing from premier theologians and

inspiring bits of literature, culture, and

daily life from fellow missionaries on the

journey to know and serve Christ.

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Podcasts

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The Word on Fire Institute publishes two podcasts to aid you in your mission of evangelization--during your morning commute, while the kids are napping, or when you simply need to revive your zeal for engaging the culture.

Subscribe to listen to The John Allen Show and the new Evangelization & Culture Show podcasts today.

Fellows

Bishop Robert Barron

Bishop Robert Barron

Bishop Robert Barron is the founder of Word on Fire Catholic Ministries and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. He is also the host of CATHOLICISM, a groundbreaking, award-winning documentary about the Catholic faith, which aired on public television.

Leah Libresco

Leah Libresco

Leah Libresco grew up as an atheist and converted to Catholicism in 2012 while at Yale. Her conversion unfolded through her popular blog, Unequally Yoked, and was also covered by various media outlets including CNN, NBC News, and The Blaze.

Fr Stephen Gadberry

Fr. Stephen Gadberry

Fr. Stephen Gadberry is an Air Force veteran where he served in Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2007. He studied at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome where he specialized in both the Theology and Spirituality of Saint Augustine and of Joseph Ratzinger. He has appeared on the hit television show American Ninja Warrior.

John Allen Jr.

John Allen Jr.

John Allen Jr. is the editor of Crux, the leading Catholic news source, specializing in coverage of the Vatican and the Catholic Church. He has written eleven books on the Vatican and Catholic affairs and is a popular speaker on Catholicism. He is also a senior Vatican analyst for CNN. In addition to hosting The John Allen Show, John will be offering an exclusive Q&A to Institute members each month.

Dr. Holly Ordway

Dr. Holly Ordway

Dr. Holly Ordway is the Fellow of Faith & Culture of the Word on Fire Institute. She is a Visiting Professor at Houston Baptist University and holds a PhD in English from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She is the author of Apologetics and the Christian Imagination: An Integrated Approach to Defending the Faith (Emmaus Road, 2017) and Not God’s Type: An Atheist Academic Lays Down Her Arms (Ignatius, 2014). Dr. Ordway is also a published poet, and a Subject Editor for the Journal of Inklings Studies. Her academic work focuses on the writings of the Inklings, especially C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien. Her current book project is Tolkien’s Modern Reading: Middle-earth Beyond the Middle Ages (forthcoming from Word on Fire, 2021).
Dr. Damian Ference

Fr. Damian Ference

Fr. Damian Ference is a priest of the Diocese of Cleveland. He holds degrees in Divinity and Philosophy from the Borromeo Seminary/John Carroll University, Saint Mary Seminary, and the Catholic University of America. He is currently a doctoral student in philosophy at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas in Rome, Italy.

Dr. Stacy Trasancos

Dr. Stacy Trasancos

Dr. Stacy Trasancos teaches chemistry and physics for Kolbe Academy and theology and science courses for Holy Apostles and Seton Hall University. She is the author of Science Was Born of Christianity: The Teaching of Fr. Stanley L. Jaki and Particles of Faith: A Catholic Guide to Navigating Science.

Dr. Anthony Pagliarini

Dr. Anthony Pagliarini

Dr. Anthony Pagliarini earned Theology and Philosophy degrees from Notre Dame, the Angelicum in Rome, and the International Theological Institute in Austria. Anthony and his wife Katie live in South Bend, Indiana with their four children. They teach in the Department of Theology at Notre Dame.

Dr. Jennifer Frey

Dr. Jennifer Frey

Dr. Jennifer Frey is currently an assistant professor of philosophy at the University of South Carolina. Previously, she was a Collegiate Assistant Professor of Humanities at the University of Chicago. She earned her PhD in philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh. She is also a wife and mother of six.

Dr. Christopher Kaczor

Dr. Christopher Kaczor

Dr. Christopher Kaczor is Professor of Philosophy at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. He holds a PhD (1996) from the University of Notre Dame. He has authored several books and his research has been featured in The Wall Street JournalHuffington PostNational Review, NPR, BBC, EWTN, ABC, NBC, FOX, CBS, MSNBC, and The Today Show.

Dr. Matthew Petrusek

Dr. Matthew Petrusek

Dr. Matthew Petrusek received an MA (Yale University) and PhD (University of Chicago) in religious ethics and is currently associate professor of theology at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. He specializes in Christian ethics, though lectures broadly, in English and Spanish, on philosophy, theology, and the Catholic intellectual tradition. In addition to serving as a WOFI fellow, he is host of the show Reasons to Believe at WordNet TV, co-author of Two Rules for Life: A Christian Response to Jordan Peterson (under contract with WOFI Press), co-editor of Value and Vulnerability: Contemporary Interfaith Dialogue on Human Dignity (University of Notre Dame Press), and has published in numerous academic journals. He lives with his wife and children in the Inland Empire in Southern California.

Dr. Tod Worner

Dr. Tod Worner

Dr. Tod Worner is a husband, father, Catholic, convert, and practicing internal medicine physician. He is the Managing Editor of the Word on Fire Institute Journal, Evangelization & Culture. His blog Catholic Thinking is found at Aleteia. He also writes for Patheos and the National Catholic Register. Follow him on Twitter @thinkercatholic.

Robert Mixa

Robert Mixa

Robert Mixa is the Fellow of Education at the Word on Fire Institute. He earned a BA in Philosophy from Saint Louis University and a Masters in Theological Studies from the Pontifical John Paul II Institute at Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. Prior to joining the Word on Fire Institute, he taught high school philosophy and theology near Chicago.

Jared Zimmerer

Jared Zimmerer

Jared Zimmerer is the Director of the Word on Fire Institute, and holds a Master’s Degree in Theology from Holy Apostles College and Seminary. He is an author, speaker, and holds a bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology, with a passion for the sports and fitness culture. He has written two books, The Ten Commandments of Lifting Weights and Man Up! Becoming the New Catholic Renaissance Man.

Dr. Matt Nelson

Dr. Matt Nelson

Dr. Matt Nelson is the Assistant Director of the Word on Fire Institute. He holds a Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) from the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College in Toronto. He is currently pursuing a MA in philosophy from Holy Apostles College and Seminary. He has been a regular contributor to the Catholic Answers Online Magazine, Strange Notions, and the Word on Fire Blog.

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15,000+ Members

14 Courses

15 Fellows

Thousands of Conversations

Our Online Community is full of theological and practical threads that discuss the content and concepts offered within each Word on Fire Institute course. But the forums are also filled with the questions, musings, and prayers of other incredible people on the same mission—to encounter Christ and to share that encounter with the world.

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What is included?

For only $27 per month

All Word on Fire Files and Study Materis, All Word on Fire Institute Courses, and New Word on Fire Institute Quarterly Journal
  • Unlimited Access to All Past, Present, and Future Institute Courses from Bishop Barron and Qualified Experts
  • Unlimited Access to Exclusive Online Events and Live Web Classes by Bishop Barron and the Institute Fellows
  • Support from Other Members and Institute Fellows in the Community Forums
  • Unlimited Access to ALL of Bishop Barron’s Films and Study Programs
  • The NEW Institute Journal Evangelization & Culture in the Mail Four Times a Year
  • A hardcover copy of Bishop Barron’s newest book Centered: The Spirituality of Word on Fire
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FAQs

Do you have scholarships/discounts for the Institute? 
We are currently working on a scholarship program for consecrated and ordained religious. 

Can I share my Institute membership with others? 
The Word on Fire Institute is designed for individual training, so you cannot share your login credentials with other people, share the videos online, or show the videos in a group setting.

How do I change/update my credit card for Institute payments?  
You can update it on the “My Account” page. Just look for the big orange “Update Card” button.

Is there an app I can use on mobile for the Institute? 
We do not currently have an app. 

Can the Institute be used within my parish? 
The Word on Fire Institute is meant for individual instruction. For parishes, Word on Fire offers the Word on Fire ENGAGE program. Email mfranz@wordonfire.org for more info!  

Is this a donation?  
No, this is the purchase of a product/service. 

Can I get a yearly Institute membership instead of monthly? 
We only offer a monthly subscription. 

When will I be charged for the Word on Fire Institute? 
You will be charged $27 on the first day of your first month of membership. The charges will continue on that same date for each subsequent month of membership. 

Do I have to pay by credit card for Institute membership? 
Yes, payments for membership in the Word on Fire Institute must be made by credit card. 

My Institute account was canceled. How can I restart? 
Unfortunately, there is no way to restart an account, so it must be recreated with the updating payment information. 

How do I cancel my Institute membership?
Please email help@wordonfire.institute letting us know you’d like to cancel your account.