New Year’s Resolutions, Part 1

180382430Traditionally, the beginning of the New Year is a time for resolutions.

However, fewer and fewer people are engaging in this age-old custom. Perhaps most feel the effort is useless. How many resolutions have we made throughout our lives only to find we break them within the first few weeks of their institution? Indeed, Archbishop Fulton Sheen once said that “Resolutions, like the good, die young.” Read the rest…

Advent Week Four: A Time for Sharing, A Time for Caring

divine intimacyOne of my favorite books for Lectio-Divina (see Week One of the Advent Study) is Divine Intimacy, by Father Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalene.

This book provides meditations on the interior life for every day of the liturgical year. I have found it to be very efficacious.

One of the meditations offered by Father Gabriel for the fourth week of Advent is entitled, The Call to the Apostolate.

In it, he offers an insightful perspective of the Christian call to evangelization based on the words of St. John the Baptist, “Prepare ye the way of the Lord” (Luke 3: 4). In the end, he tells us that “Jesus has need of us.” When I read these words, they infused me with zeal.

Because I found this meditation so spiritually benefiicial, today I’d like to share with you what Father Gabriel presents.  Read the rest…

Advent Week Three: A Time for Charity, A Time for Love, Part IV

stk99581corSt. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (St. Edith Stein) wrote, “On the question of relation to our fellow men — our neighbor’s spiritual need transcends every commandment. Everything else we do is a means to an end. But love is an end already, since God is love.”

These words express a great truth and they should be at the heart of every action we perform for another, especially as we seek to enter more deeply into the very heart of God given to us through His Son, Jesus Christ.

 

Read the rest…

Advent Week Three: A Time for Charity, A Time for Love, Part III

106540081St. Augustine wrote,

“Love has hands to help others. It has feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. This is what love looks like.” Read the rest…

Advent Week Three: A Time for Charity, A Time for Love, Part II

As we discovered yesterday, for our good deeds to become charitable acts, we must center our hearts, our souls, our minds, and all of our strength on love of God. Then, and only then, will our good deeds effect a change that reaches beyond the finite to touch the eternal. And when we do that, every thought, word, deed, and suffering can become an act of charity — even our daily labor. Read the rest…

Advent Week Three: A Time for Charity, A Time for Love, Part I

stk23557sis“May the Lord make you overflow with love for one another and for all, even as our love does for you. May He strengthen your hearts…At the coming of our Lord Jesus…” — Thes. 3:12-13

Toy collections, food drives, charity bazaars — all common activities in communities and parishes during the Christmas season. And they are good. They help fulfill Jesus’ mandate to “love your neighbor as yourself” (Mark 12:31).

However, this command of Jesus is subordinate to the one preceding it — “you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind.”

Love of neighbor flows from love of God, and love of God is a prerequisite for a charitable action. There is a profound difference between a humanitarian act and an act of charity.

A humanitarian action, admirable as it may be, is limited in potential. Rooted in human compassion and accomplished through human incentive, it goes only as far as the individual’s generosity and goodwill carry it. Read the rest…

Advent Preparation Week Two: A Time for Reconciliation, A Time for Forgiveness, Part IV

While the six steps toward forgiveness outlined by psychologists can be of great help, forgiveness itself is primarily a spiritual work that takes place deeply within the inner confines of our heart. Therefore, making use of the remedies given to us in Sacred Scripture and through Holy Mother Church are of ultimate benefits.

Today, we will look at three spiritual remedies that enable us to move along the path to forgiveness. Read the rest…

Advent Week Two: A Time for Reconciliation, A Time for Forgiveness, Part III

106564606I hope that your time of prayer yesterday was a fruitful one as you began the process of forgiveness. The first three steps we discussed yesterday are fundamental to the healing process and they may need to be revisited often as you journey toward forgiveness. Read the rest…