"If you can keep your head…" UPDATED

There is a poem by Rudyard Kipling - I'm sure we all know it:If you can keep your head when all about you Are losing theirs and blaming it on you, If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you, But make allowance for their doubting too; If you can wait and not be tired by waiting, Or being lied about, don't deal in lies, Or being hated, don't give way to hating, And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise:As I wrote below, I don't often come up to smack. But it's important to keep … [Read more...]

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St. Francis de Sales

"To live according to the spirit is to love according to the spirit."Today is the feastday of this very great saint - a bishop, a prolific writer and Doctor of the Church; patron of writers and communicators.In this age where we are all of us communicating instantly, non-stop, and probably more than we ought, he is a good saint to keep in mind.If you have not read Pat Gohn's reasons for keeping St. Francis on her fridge door, go check it out. His message of hope, which she shares, … [Read more...]

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Encouragement from St. Francis de Sales

To persevere in the devout life it is a matter of deciding upon some excellent and generous maxims, with the right intention. The first I would suggest to you is that of Saint Paul, "All turns out well for those who love God." [cf. Rom 8:28] If we agree that God can and does draw good out of evil, will He not do that especially for those who give themselves to Him without reserve? Even our very sins (from which may God preserve us!) are destined by Providence for the good of those who serve God. … [Read more...]

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Two Formidable Maries

Over at the Catholic Portal we have the curious circumstance (or gift) of reading about two women, both known as Marie of the Incarnation, one is a beata, and one is a saint, but both of them would be considered formidable women in any age...even our own, and both of them give lie to the notion that the Catholic church "keeps women down" or has held them back from self-actualizing and being all they could be.Frank Weathers enthusiastically introduces us to the beata,Blessed Marie de … [Read more...]

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Beatifying Newman, Neri & More

One of the books I'll be trying to read while in Rome is John Henry Newman; Prayers, Verses and Devotions, from Ignatius Press.Just as it seems like St. Philip Neri, my Patron for this year, may have had a hand in making Rome a suddenly reality (when I discovered that our lodgings are very near his Oratory, I could almost hear him laughing), finding this book--in perfect condition--in the "used book" bin at church seemed like a gift, too. Since Pope Benedict will be beatifying Newman on … [Read more...]

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St. Philip Neri

From the Breviary: Saint Philip Neri was born at Florence in 1515. He went to Rome and began to work with young men among whom he fostered Christian life and formed an association for the poor and the sick. Ordained to the priesthood in 1551, he founded the Oratory where spiritual reading, singing, and works of charity were practiced. He excelled in his love of neighbor and in evangelical simplicity along with a joyous service to God. Saint Philip died in 1595.My Patron for 2010 has … [Read more...]

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