February 17, 2021

  “But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right is doing, so that your almsgiving may be secret. And your Father who sees in secret will repay you.” Mt. 6:3-4 Sometimes Jesus can be frustrating. I want to follow Jesus closely and obey his commands, but the call of the gospel demands a lot of us – more than I feel like I can give some days. Matthew 6:3-4 is one of those… Read more

February 17, 2021

  St. Fintan was an Irish monk that connected his spiritual life to how and what he ate. He ate what we might call a vegan diet today. He refrained from all animal products in his diet. He viewed this as a spiritual practice that helped him connect more meaningfully to God and to God’s creation. He found it so beneficial, in fact, that he even tried to force the practice on some of the monks he lived with. This didn’t… Read more

February 16, 2021

The faith of Nicola Paglia was passionate. The account of his life drip with an energy and enthusiasm for Jesus that seems to splash a love of God on everything that he did. Sometimes it resulted in him making major decisions without taking the time to think about it – like the time that he heard St. Domonic preach and rushed to him as soon as he had left the pulpit so that he could join his order.  His faith seemed… Read more

February 15, 2021

The devotion to the Sacred Heart is a beloved part of the spirituality of thousands of Catholics. However, many people don’t realize that its wider use is due in large part to a Jesuit named Claude La Colombiere. Margaret Mary Alacoque had been receiving visions beginning a few days after Christmas in 1673. In these, she received the practices and prayers that would go onto become a powerful part of the prayer life and spirituality of many Catholics for centuries to come…. Read more

February 13, 2021

What language should the Church use in prayer? To this day people fight about this. Some prefer the whole Church to speak one language – which promotes unity. While others argue that the Church’s prayer should adapt to the local dialects – which promotes participation and comprehension. This was the fundamental challenge that Sts. Cyril and Methodius faced in their mission to the Slavic people. Many of the missionaries at the time wanted to promote a uniform liturgy and fought… Read more

February 13, 2021

  Have you ever wondered if you should give money to men and women who ask it of you on the streets? It’s a question I am asked by people all the time because of my work with poor and hungry people. A story about Jordan of Saxony, who is commemorated today, offers valuable insight. Bl. Jordan encountered a poor man on the road and gave him his tunic. Work got back that this man had sold the tunic so… Read more

February 12, 2021

Lent is an ancient Christian season that seeks to draw people more deeply into their relationship with God. Through prayer, fasting, and works of generosity, we ask that the noise of life would be turned down and that the rhythms of God’s ways would become more clear. I hope that you will join me this season in praying through my daily Lenten reflections. By signing up you will receive a short email each morning that will offer a fresh perspective… Read more

February 12, 2021

  Does what you wear impact how you pray? When I think about developing a deeper life of prayer I often focus on what we are supposed to say and when we are supposed to say it. Today we commemorate a man who helped develop, instead, what to wear. The story goes that the Virgin Mary appeared to him and instructed him that he should incorporate a white scapular into his religious habit. He was one of the earliest Dominicans and… Read more

February 11, 2021

  14-year old Bernadette Soubirous first saw the women who would come to be known as Our Lady of Lourdes over 250 years ago on February 11, 1858.  The women would ask her to offer prayer and penitence for the conversion of sinners and prayed the rosary with Bernadette. Today consider doing this as well. A rosary is a powerful tool that helps us enter deeply into the heart of Mary for her son Jesus and those to whom Jesus gave his… Read more

February 10, 2021

Do you ever fear God won’t listen to your prayers because their too self-focused or not “holy enough” in their intent? St. Scholastica offers a great perspective on this problem. Scholastica is said to have been the sister of Saint Benedict, the founder of the western monastic tradition. She likewise followed a monastic rule for much of her life and maintained a close relationship with her brother until her death in 543. One story that I love is that one… Read more

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