Catholic Culture Resources
Catholic Culture Resources

89—Mary and the Blues—Mike Aquilina

By Catholic Culture Podcast ( bio - articles - email ) | Oct 22, 2020 | In The Catholic Culture Podcast

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In addition to being the host of Catholic Culture’s Way of the Fathers podcast and the author of dozens of books on the early Church, Mike Aquilina is a poet who has written songs performed by the likes of Dion, Paul Simon, and Bruce Springsteen.

Mike joins the show to discuss his collaboration with legendary singer Dion, early Christian beliefs about Mary as detailed in his new book History’s Queen, and other topics in early Church history. You’ll hear songs from Dion’s new album Blues with Friends, and readings from Mike’s new poetry collection The Invention of Zero.

All songs and music videos used with permission from Dion.


[3:16] Mike’s prolific 2020 in books, poetry and music

[5:49] Working with Dion on his album Blues with Friends

[10:04] “Song for Sam Cooke (Here in America)”

[20:24] Dion’s influence on the greats of rock’n’roll

[25:50] “Told You Once in August”

[33:20] Early Jewish and pagan attacks on Mary

[38:37] What we can learn from apocryphal texts

[43:52] Evidence for early belief in Mary’s Assumption

[51:27] “New York is My Home” with Dion and Paul Simon

[59:40] What was the agape meal and why did it disappear after the early years of Christianity?

[1:04:37] Mike reads poems from The Invention of Zero

[1:10:47] Making the Way of the Fathers podcast

[1:15:50] “Hymn to Him”

[1:21:57] Dion’s return to Catholicism via St. Augustine


Mike’s recent projects:

Dion, Blues With Friends

Dion, New York Is My Home

History’s Queen

The Invention of Zero

Work Play Love

The Holy Mass (Sayings of the Fathers of the Church)

Way of the Fathers podcast


Mike Aquilina

Podcasts mentioned:

Patrick Coffin interview with Dion

Square Notes: The Sacred Music Podcast

Crisis: Clergy Abuse in the Catholic Church

Books on the Assumption mentioned by Mike:

Stephen Shoemaker, The Ancient Traditions of the Virgin Mary’s Dormition and Assumption

Richard Bauckham, The Fate of the Dead: Studies on the Jewish and Christian Apocalypses

Theme music: “Franciscan Eyes”, written and performed by Thomas Mirus. Download the Catholic Culture Podcast soundtrack.

Thomas V. Mirus is Director of Podcasts for, hosts The Catholic Culture Podcast, and co-hosts Criteria: The Catholic Film Podcast. See full bio.

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