EWTN's New Series 'The Heresies' Proves There's Nothing New Under the Sun


Most Catholics have at least heard of the concepts of “heresy” and “heretics.” However, few can list or define them, and even fewer understand how – even today – various heresies affect many people’s thinking, including their own. EWTN’s new series, “The Heresies,” is about to change that. While individual “Heresies” episodes have previously aired, they proved so popular that EWTN has added new episodes and turned them into a series with a regular time slot. (Airs 5 p.m. ET, Thursdays, beginning March 3, with an encore at 6:30 a.m. ET, Sundays.

In putting this series together for EWTN, Host Tim Moriarty of Castletown Media says: “One of the great things I discovered is that so many of the great Doctors of the Church and founders of religious orders were responding to the heresies of their time. For example, St. Augustine’s writings on grace were a direct response to the heresy of Pelagianism. The Dominican order was founded to combat to the heresy of Albigensianism. When we see these great figures of the Church in their historical and theological context, it brings them to life in exciting ways.”

Each episode is separated into three segments. “The first segment begins with an introduction to the heresy by providing the historical context for the controversy. The second segment looks at how various orthodox teachers confronted the error and how the issue was resolved by the Church. The third segment explores where elements of the heresy are present in the culture today.” Moriarty is especially pleased with the dramatic reenactments in this series which really bring the historical controversies to life.

Moriarty says that heresies can confuse the faithful because they contain partial truths. In Episode 1, we learn that Gnosticism is the belief that human beings contain a divine spark within themselves. That spark has fallen from a spiritual world, ruled by a good God, into a material world ruled by an evil one.

“To the Gnostics, therefore, the world is nothing but a place of suffering and ignorance,” says Moriarty. “For them, the goal of life is to escape the material world through gaining of interior knowledge (gnosis) of the true world within oneself.”

Moriarty says all of this is “deeply relevant” to those of us living in the 21st Century. While people today do not necessarily see the world outside as evil, they frequently see it as meaningless. Because they believe they only have themselves to rely on, they must create their own meaning.

“The Church has always taught that the world, as created by God, is good and that the human person is created in the image of God,” Moriarity says. “In other words, the way towards salvation is not through the negation of the body and the material world, but through the redemption of the world. It is for this reason that orthodoxy has always defended the importance of the incarnation, the sacraments, human sexuality, etc. While a modern Gnostic might claim that he is ‘spiritual but not religious,’ seeking his or her own inner truth, orthodox Christianity has always taught that being part of a concrete and historical body – i.e.: the Church - is essential.”

In creating this series, Moriarty said he came to have a deeper appreciation and love for our forefathers in the Faith.

In addition to Gnosticism, viewers can look forward to episodes on Arianism, Pelagianism, Nestorianism, Albigensianism, Jansenism, Modernism I, Modernism II, and Donatism, with even more to come.

Want to learn how to better defend the Faith? Tune in to “The Heresies” on EWTN beginning 5 p.m. ET, Thursday, March 3.

In its 40th year, EWTN is the largest religious media network in the world. EWTN’s 11 global TV channels are broadcast in multiple languages 24 hours a day, seven days a week to over 390 million television households in more than 150 countries and territories. EWTN platforms also include radio services transmitted through SIRIUS/XM, iHeart Radio, and over 500 domestic and international AM & FM radio affiliates; a worldwide shortwave radio service; one of the largest Catholic websites in the U.S.; electronic and print news services, including Catholic News Agency, “The National Catholic Register” newspaper, and several global news wire services; as well as EWTN Publishing, its book publishing division.


Photo Caption: Tim Moriarty hosts EWTN's newest series, "The Heresies." Most people have at least heard of heresies and heretics, but few can list or define them. Even fewer understand how they affect modern man today. This series is a real eye-opener! Airs 5 p.m. ET, Thursdays, beginning March 3, with an encore at 6:30 a.m. ET, Sundays. (Go to www.ewtn.com/everywhere and click on the television, radio, or online photos to find all the ways to connect with EWTN.)