Sunday, November 27, 2011

Peace and blessings this holy Advent season. May this holy season of silence, solitude, and simplicity prepare you for the coming of Christ. 

Saturday, November 26, 2011

If we set out along the road that leads to God, and to the loving union of our will with the will of God, we cannot get far without meeting a dragon. ~Fr. Gerald Vann, OP

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

At Heaven’s gate our entrance ticket, according to Scripture and Church dogma, is not our good works or our sincerity, but our faith, which glues us to Jesus. He saves us; we do not save ourselves. But I find, incredibly, that 9 out of 10 Catholics do not know this, the absolutely central, core, essential dogma of Christianity. Protestants are right: most Catholics do in fact believe a whole other religion. Well over 90% of students I have polled who have had 12 years of catechism classes, even Catholic high schools, say they expect to go to Heaven because they tried, or did their best, or had compassionate feelings to everyone, or were sincere. They hardly ever mention Jesus. Asked why they hope to be saved, they mention almost anything except the Savior. Who taught them? Who wrote their textbooks? These teachers have stolen from our precious children the most valuable thing in the world, the "pearl of great price;" their faith. Jesus had some rather terrifying warnings about such things something about millstones. ~ Peter Kreeft, Convert, Professor of Philosophy @ Boston College

Friday, November 18, 2011

“Out of the darkness of my life, so much frustrated, I put before you the one great thing to love on earth: the Blessed Sacrament... There you will find romance, glory, honour, fidelity, and the true way of all your loves on earth, and more than that: Death: by the divine paradox, that which ends life, and demands the surrender of all, and yet by the taste (or foretaste) of which alone can what you seek in your earthly relationships (love, faithfulness, joy) be maintained, or take on that complexion of reality, of eternal endurance, which every man's heart desires.” ~ J. R.R. Tolkien

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I used to think that God's gifts were on shelves one above the other and that the taller we grow in Christian character the more easily we could reach them. I now find that God's gifts are on shelves one beneath the other and that it is not a question of growing taller but of stooping lower. ~F. B. Meyer

Monday, November 14, 2011

Too many people who claim to be Christian simply don’t know Jesus Christ. They don’t really believe in the Gospels. They feel embarrassed by their religion and vaguely out of step with the times. They may keep their religion for comfort value. Or they may adjust it to fit their doubts. But it doesn’t reshape their lives because it isn’t real. And because it isn’t real, it has no transforming effect on their personal behavior, no social force and few public consequences. ~Archbishop Charles Chaput, Assumption College, Nov. 10, 2011

Saturday, November 12, 2011

I want to invite you to "dare to love." Do not desire anything less for your life than love that is strong and beautiful and that is capable of making the whole of your existence a joyful undertaking of giving yourselves as a gift to God and your brothers and sisters, in imitation of the One who vanquished hatred and death forever through love. ~Pope Benedict XVI

Thursday, November 10, 2011

We do not have a personal Gospel and a social Gospel. There is one Gospel, and one Gospel only, and that Gospel is the Gospel of Jesus Christ; this indivisible message from God has its individual application and its social application. It has the power to redeem the individual and also the power to redeem social order. ~Jesse  Bader

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Your theology is what you are when the talking stops and the action starts. ~Colin Morris

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Christians should never let adversity get them down except on their knees. ~ John Vance Cheney

Friday, November 4, 2011

Teach me dear Lord frequently and attentively to consider this truth: that if I gain the whole world and lose thee, in the end I have lost everything: whereas if I lose the whole world and gain thee, in the end I have lost nothing. ~ Bl. John Henry Cardinal Newman

Thursday, November 3, 2011

In order to realize the worth of the anchor, we need to feel the stress of the storm. ~ Anonymous 

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The best form of contemplative prayer is adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. As we behold the face of Christ in his sacramental presence, we behold the source of light, healing and peace. Through silent contemplation, we enter into the wordless realm.

In a way beyond our explanation, we experience the powerful presence of Christ at the very deepest level of our existence; and as our roots receive this rain from heaven, the rest of our being will flourish, and we will grow into the abundant life that Christ promises. ~ Father Dwight Longenecker

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy people seldom think of happiness. They are too busy losing their lives in the meaningful sacrifices of service. ~David Augsburger

Sunday, October 30, 2011

It is possible to be so active in the service of Christ as to forget to love him. ~ P. T. Forsyth

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Today's Christians are too often like deep-sea divers encased in suits designed for many fathoms deep, marching bravely forth to pull plugs out of bathtubs. ~ Peter Marshall

Friday, October 28, 2011

To live by the law of Christ and accept him in our hearts is to turn a giant floodlight of hope into our valleys of trouble. ~ Charles R. Hembree

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Anger makes you smaller, while forgiveness forces you to grow beyond what you were. ~ Cherie Carter-Scott

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

We often experience our time as empty. We hope that tomorrow, next week, next month or next year the real things will happen. But sometimes we experience the fullness of time. That is when it seems that time stands still, that past, present, and future become one; that everything is present where we are; and that God, we, and all that is have come together in total unity. This is the experience of God's time. "When the completion of the time came [that is: in the fullness of time], God sent his Son, born of a woman" (Galatians 4:4), and in the fullness of time God will "bring everything together under Christ, as head, everything in the heavens and everything on earth" (Ephesians 1:10). It is in the fullness of time that we meet God. ~Fr. Henri J.M. Nouwen

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


I keep thinking about how and why and with what hands
people touch each other’s lives,
the violence of bone and blood and muscle
it takes to make a reaching.
How much of a gift it is
that any two persons’ straight lines toward doom
become for a time
a charmed circle.
Amazing the patterns people make
by crossing each other’s paths
like black cats on this dark-night planet, amazing
to say I love you,
O Lord
I am not worthy that you should
that anyone should
come under my roof, O Lord
but how glad.

                                       ~ Joanne McPortland

Monday, October 24, 2011

“What we would like to do is change the world--make it a little simpler for people to feed, clothe, and shelter themselves as God intended them to do. And, by fighting for better conditions, by crying out unceasingly for the rights of the workers, the poor, of the destitute--the rights of the worthy and the unworthy poor, in other words--we can, to a certain extent, change the world; we can work for the oasis, the little cell of joy and peace in a harried world. We can throw our pebble in the pond and be confident that its ever widening circle will reach around the world. We repeat, there is nothing we can do but love, and, dear God, please enlarge our hearts to love each other, to love our neighbor, to love our enemy as our friend.” ~Dorothy Day

Sunday, October 23, 2011

"The Blessing of Autumn"

As autumn flames across park and field
as smoke curls from ditch and garden,
as birds sing their farewell song,
as frost begins to touch the ground
and our hearts are warmed
by the scent, sound and touch of it;
now is the time to throw away
the heavy stones of anger, regret and fear,
which harden our hearts.
Now is the time to gather stories of praise
to build a cairn
of thankfulness to our God
for all the blessings of our autumn life.

                                          ~ Kate McIlhagga

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Forgiveness brings freedom - freedom from being controlled by the past, freedom from the emotional ties to the offender, freedom from the continual inner conflicts of bitterness and hate, freedom to become whole and enjoy the fullness of life. ~Jeanette Vought

Friday, October 21, 2011

Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step. ~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Only through believing, then, does faith grow and become stronger; there is no other possibility for possessing certitude with regard to one’s life apart from self-abandonment, in a continuous crescendo, into the hands of a love that seems to grow constantly because it has its origin in God. ~ Pope Benedict XVI, Apostolic Letter, Porta Fidei

Monday, October 17, 2011

The New Testament does not say, "You shall know the rules, and by them you shall be bound," but, "You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." ~ John Baillie

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A Four-fold Blessing

May God bless you with a restless discomfort about easy answers, half-truths and superficial relationships, so that you may seek truth boldly and love deep within your heart.

May God bless you with holy anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may tirelessly work  for justice, freedom, and peace among all people.

May God bless you with the gift of tears to shed with those  who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation, or the loss of all  that they cherish, so that you may reach out your hand to  comfort them and transform their pain into joy.

May God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you  really CAN make a difference in this world, so that you are able, with God's grace, to do what others claim cannot be done.

And the blessing of God the Supreme Majesty and our Creator, Jesus Christ the Incarnate Word who is our brother and Savior,  and the Holy Spirit, our Advocate and Guide, be with you and  remain with you, this day and forevermore.


Thursday, October 13, 2011

We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. The one who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. Forgiveness is not an occasional act, it is a permanent attitude. ~ Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

We sat in her autumn garden and talked, Martine and I. I'd dropped by her studio on the way back from Ottawa, hoping to find her in -- her studio is open "by chance or by appointment", so it was a bit dodgy. But there she was, getting ready for the weekend art tour. She works in all sort of media -- glass, pottery, watercolours, oils. I love visiting, seeing what she's putting together from her tableful of stash -- she does a lot with found objects. I have several of her pieces; my favourite is a small black iron cage, adorned with slips of coloured glass and big bright earrings, which dangles in my front hall.

She made me tea and we talked and talked. Lately I've been blessed by such conversations; they seem to be becoming almost normal in my life. I'd had coffee with Andrew, whose partner Bill has bone cancer. I'd listened to Sybil telling about her husband's difficult death; he'd put her through hell on his way out. I'd visited my friend Toby in prison, and he had babbled like a brook, totally transparent and open, a transformed soul. I'd had a long, good lunch with Anna, whose marriage is foundering. And now Martine, who'd lost both parents and her husband in 18 months and is facing one of those huge life transitions -- as am I.

I grew up in a culture of reticence, where we didn't speak of important matters, where such speech was suspect, even indecorous. Keep the conversation light and civilized and (preferably) clever and stimulating.  Don't air the dirty linen. A part of me can still see the value of this approach; it doesn't burden total strangers, as the Ancient Mariner did, with a hell of a lot more information than they want. It puts high value on discipline, reticence, and good form, none of which is a Bad Thing. I'm generally with Miss Manners, and this sort of discourse is exactly to her taste. And of course I don't like whiners any more than you do. (But there's whining and there's real suffering, and those who really suffer rarely whine.)

The problem with this way of operating is that it doesn't work very well in Interesting Times. In Interesting Times, you lack the energy for polite conversation; what you need to do is to talk -- really talk -- with genuine honesty, because that sort of talking and listening is where love truly happens, and love's what you most need.  That's the part that dear Miss Manners, much as I admire her, doesn't get -- or at least doesn't write about: It's not about being correct; it's about mustering and communicating it love, and making a space for someone who's suffering to be open about the suffering. It's about holding the sufferer in support and later in healing.  It's not narcissism or self-indulgence to need to talk openly and authentically when you're hurting really badly, although that's the message that I'd been brought up with and had heard a little too much from the communities to which I could not quite belong.  It's normal and human and right.  It's what we're supposed to do for each other.

I've listened to friends' troubles any number of times in the past; I think particularly of my adoptive daughter and the long, good talks we've had, and of other friends who have confided in me and who've listened in turn to my burblings. But something's different now.  There's been a sea-change, and it's in me. It's no longer a matter of caring for others, because that was the right thing to do; it's turned into a joy. It's an affirmation of the distance I've come since my own Interesting Times, the things I've learned, the wisdom I've garnered, usually the very hard way.  It's emboldening me to take the path that's authentically mine.  And that may mean walking away from places that don't permit that sort of honesty, not in anger or even in disagreement, but because I'm called to something richer and more nourishing.

Artists say that nothing is more beautiful than the naked human body. Martine and I don't fit the culture's definition of "beautiful body", not by a *very* long shot, but as we talked, our souls were naked, and I saw -- as I'd seen in talking to Toby and Anna and Sybil and Andrew -- how extraordinarily beautiful a thing is the naked human soul.

We sat and sipped our tea and she smoked a cigarette, and the autumn garden shone green and gold around us. She'd planted sunflowers, yellow and bronze, and their flowers glowed in the late afternoon sun. The garden held a Tree of Life she'd made in orange glass, hung on a black iron frame. The Tree of Life is her central symbol; it's painted on the front of her studio. It's an ample and bountiful symbol, full of fruit.  She's done so much serious suffering in the last couple of years, and yet joy poured out of her studio and washed through the garden she created last summer. Joy streamed through her small house and spilled out on the front lawn. Joy shone in her voice as she picked up a small piece of glass and started musing about where it might take her. We talked about the hard things we've been through, and joy -- the most satisfying golden stuff -- lapped around our feet. I'd believed it in theory, but now I could feel it in fact, that joy is indeed the other side of suffering. When we withhold ourselves from suffering -- our own or others' -- because "it's not quite nice", we lose that joy.

I bought a small glass panel, but I left it in her studio for the gallery tour. I'll collect it in a couple of weeks.  It may be too cold then to sit out in the garden, but we can hope for a warm October. ~Molly Wolf

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

To wait open-endedly is an enormously radical attitude toward life. So is to trust that something will happen to us that is far beyond our imaginings. So, too, is giving up control over our future and letting God define our life, trusting that God molds us according to God's love and not according to our fear. The spiritual life is a life in which we wait, actively present to the moment, trusting that new things will happen to us, new things that are far beyond our own imagination, fantasy, or prediction. That, indeed, is a very radical stance toward life in a world preoccupied with control. ~Henri J. M. Nouwen

Monday, October 10, 2011

Are the great visions of the ultimate peace among all people and the ultimate harmony of all creation just utopian fairy tales? No, they are not! They correspond to the deepest longings of the human heart and point to the truth waiting to be revealed beyond all lies and deceptions. These visions nurture our souls and strengthen our hearts. They offer us hope when we are close to despair, courage when we are tempted to give up on life, and trust when suspicion seems the more logical attitude. Without these visions our deepest aspirations, which give us the energy to overcome great obstacles and painful setbacks, will be dulled and our lives will become flat, boring, and finally destructive. Our visions enable us to live the full life. ~ Henri J. M. Nouwen

Saturday, October 8, 2011

An act of love that fails is just as much a part of the divine life as an act of love that succeeds, for love is measured by its own fullness, not by its reception. ~ Harold Loukes

Friday, October 7, 2011

"The encounter with Christ, constantly intensified and deepened in the Eucharist, issues in the Church and in every Christian an urgent summons to testimony and evangelization." ~Bl. John Paul II

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Living a spiritual life makes our little, fearful hearts as wide as the universe, because the Spirit of Jesus dwelling within us embraces the whole of creation. Jesus is the Word, through whom the universe has been created. As Paul says: "In him were created all things in heaven and on earth: everything visible and everything invisible - all things were created through him and for him - in him all things hold together" (Colossians 1:16-17). Therefore when Jesus lives within us through his Spirit, our hearts embrace not only all people but all of creation. Love casts out all fear and gathers in all that belongs to God. Prayer, which is breathing with the Spirit of Jesus, leads us to this immense knowledge. ~Fr. Henri J.M. Nouwen

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Happy Feast of St. Francis! "I have done what was mine to do. May Christ show you what is yours to do." ~St. Francis of Assisi

Monday, October 3, 2011

O incomparable Giver of life, cut reason loose at last!
Let it wander grey-eyed from vanity to vanity.
Shatter open my skull, pour in it the wine of madness!
Let me be mad, as You; mad with You, with us.
Beyond the sanity of fools is a burning desert
Where Your sun is whirling in every atom:
Beloved, drag me there, let me roast in Perfection!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Those who are marginal in the world are central in the Church, and that is how it is supposed to be! Thus we are called as members of the Church to keep going to the margins of our society. The homeless, the starving, parentless children, people with AIDS, our emotionally disturbed brothers and sisters - they require our first attention.

We can trust that when we reach out with all our energy to the margins of our society we will discover that petty disagreements, fruitless debates, and paralyzing rivalries will recede and gradually vanish. The Church will always be renewed when our attention shifts from ourselves to those who need our care. The blessing of Jesus always comes to us through the poor. The most remarkable experience of those who work with the poor is that, in the end, the poor give more than they receive. They give food to us. ~ Fr. Henri J. M. Nouwen

Saturday, October 1, 2011

If you believe what you like in the gospels, and reject what you don't like, it is not the gospel you believe, but yourself. ~ St. Augustine of Hippo

Friday, September 30, 2011

All human nature vigorously resists grace because grace changes us and the change is painful. ~Flannery O’Connor

Thursday, September 29, 2011

“Our educational establishment these days, while so tolerant of and even insistent upon diversity in all other aspects of life seems bent on eliminating diversity of moral judgment — particularly moral judgment based on religious views.” ~ Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Nothing is hidden from the Lord Jesus, but even our secrets are close to him. Let us then do everything in the knowledge that he is dwelling within us, so that we may be his temples and he may be God within us. ~St. Ignatius of Antioch

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

“When I first found out I had cancer, I didn't know what to pray for. I didn't know if I should pray for healing or life or death. Then I found peace in praying for what my folks call, 'God's perfect will.' As it evolved, my prayer has become, 'Lord, let me live until I die.' By that I mean I want to live, love, and serve fully until death comes. If that prayer is answered, how long really doesn't matter. Whether it's just a few months or a few years is really immaterial.” ~ Sister Thea Bowman

Monday, September 26, 2011

Dear Friends, Christ is not so much interested in how often in your lives you stumble and fall, as in how often you pick yourselves up again. He does not demand glittering achievements, but He wants His light to shine in you. He does not call you because you are good and perfect, but because He is good and He wants to make you His friends. Yes, you are the light of the world because Jesus is your light. You are Christians - not because you do special and extraordinary things, but because Christ is your life. You are holy because His grace is at work in you. ~Pope Benedict XVI

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Dear Young People: Christ, risen from the dead, shines in this world and he does so most brightly in those places where, in human terms, everything is somber and hopeless. He has conquered death -- he is alive -- and faith in him, like a small light, cuts through all that is dark and threatening. ~Pope Benedict XVI

Friday, September 23, 2011

The life of a Christian is nothing but a perpetual struggle against self; there is no flowering of the soul to the beauty of its perfection except at the price of pain. ~St. Padre Pio

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

When the Church ceases to be evangelical, she ceases to be the Church.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

In particular, the Catholic Church is the friend of the poor. Like Christ, she welcomes without exception all who approach her to hear the divine message of peace, hope and salvation. Moreover, in obedience to the Lord, she continues to do so without regard for "tribe and tongue and people and nation" (cf. Rev 5:9), for in Christ, we "are one body" (cf. Rom 12:5). ~Pope Benedict XVI

Monday, September 19, 2011

"Christ's entire mission is summed up in this: to baptize us in the Holy Spirit, to free us from slavery of death and 'to open heaven to us', that is, access to the true and full life that will be a 'plunging ever anew into the vastness of being, in which we are simply overwhelmed with joy'." ~Pope Benedict XVI

Sunday, September 18, 2011

The ministry of evangelization...begins with an encounter with one Person, the Person of Jesus, and effects a change within us, a conversion of heart, which touches every area of our lives. Life with Christ brings joy, peace, and fulfillment. It brings healing, forgiveness, and truth. But it also oftentimes means a change in perspective and direction, a breaking away from what is comfortable or convenient, or “the norm.” This purification can be painful, but it is exactly in this struggle that the Lord will be glorified through us. In our weakness, He is strong. In our brokenness, He makes us whole. He wishes to use us, to move in us, in such a way that our own lives become a means of evangelization toward everyone we meet. Christ needs disciples who are not afraid to speak of his love and mercy from their own lived experiences, from the depths of their changed being.
~Deacon Ralph Poyo, 2011 Maine Catholic Men's Conference keynote speaker

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Through baptism we become part of a family much larger than our biological family. It is a family of people "set apart" by God to be light in the darkness. These set-apart people are called saints. Although we tend to think about saints as holy and pious, and picture them with halos above their heads and ecstatic gazes, true saints are much more accessible. They are men and women like us, who live ordinary lives and struggle with ordinary problems. What makes them saints is their clear and unwavering focus on God and God's people. Some of their lives may look quite different, but most of their lives are remarkably similar to our own. The saints are our brothers and sisters, calling us to become like them. ~Henri J.M. Nouwen

Friday, September 16, 2011

“To put the Eucharist at the center of Christian life means to put Jesus at the heart of everything. In the Eucharist we are called to enter into Trinitarian love. By making the Holy Mass the center of our interior life, we are united to Jesus and, in him, to the whole Church, to all [people].”~Bishop Javier Echevarría

Thursday, September 15, 2011

"Death and life have met in an inseparable mystery, and life has triumphed. The God of salvation has shown himself to be the uncontested Lord, whom all the ends of the earth will celebrate, and before whom all the families of peoples will bow down in worship. It is the victory of faith, which is able to transform death into a gift of life -- the abyss of suffering into a source of hope." ~Pope Benedict XVI

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

"Nourishing Our Own Inner Monasteries"

Let silence be placed around us
like a mantle.
Let us enter into it,
as through a small secret door;
to emerge into,
an acre of peace,
where stillness reigns
and God is ever present.


Then comes the voice of God
in the startled cry
of a refugee child,
in unfamiliar surroundings
Then comes the voice of God,
in the mother,
fleeing with
her treasure
in her arms, and saying,
"I am here."

Then comes the voice of God,
in the father
who points to the stars
and says:
"There is our signpost.
There is our lantern.
Be of good courage."


O Lord, may the mantle of silence
become a cloak of understanding
to warm our hearts in prayer.

                     ~by Kate McIIhagga

Monday, September 12, 2011

"...we can’t claim to love God and be a “good Catholic,” but then ignore what it means to be Catholic in our business dealings, our social policies and in our political choices. Christian faith is always personal but never private. It either guides our behavior all the time, both in public and in private, or it’s phony. And if it’s phony, we should stop trying to fool ourselves. We need to be faithful Catholics first." ~Archbishop Charles J. Chaput

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Prayer @ Ground Zero

O God of love, compassion, and healing,
look on us, people of many different faiths and traditions,
who gather today at this site,
the scene of incredible violence and pain.

We ask you in your goodness
to give eternal light and peace
to all who died here—
the heroic first-responders:
our fire fighters, police officers,
emergency service workers, and Port Authority personnel,
along with all the innocent men and women
who were victims of this tragedy
simply because their work or service
brought them here on September 11, 2001.

We ask you, in your compassion
to bring healing to those
who, because of their presence here that day,
suffer from injuries and illness.
Heal, too, the pain of still-grieving families
and all who lost loved ones in this tragedy.
Give them strength to continue their lives with courage and hope.

We are mindful as well
of those who suffered death, injury, and loss
on the same day at the Pentagon and in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
Our hearts are one with theirs
as our prayer embraces their pain and suffering.

God of peace, bring your peace to our violent world:
peace in the hearts of all men and women
and peace among the nations of the earth.
Turn to your way of love
those whose hearts and minds
are consumed with hatred.

God of understanding,
overwhelmed by the magnitude of this tragedy,
we seek your light and guidance
as we confront such terrible events.
Grant that those whose lives were spared
may live so that the lives lost here
may not have been lost in vain.
Comfort and console us,
strengthen us in hope,
and give us the wisdom and courage
to work tirelessly for a world
where true peace and love reign
among nations and in the hearts of all.
                                                                                                 ~Pope Benedict XVI

Saturday, September 10, 2011

God is with us in the reality of life, not the fantasy! It is embrace, not escape, that we seek! ~Pope Benedict XVI

Friday, September 9, 2011

I do not understand how it is possible not to trust in God, who can do all things. With God, everything; without God, nothing. ~St. Faustina Kowalska

Thursday, September 8, 2011

"There can be no authentic Christianity, no life-giving Christianity, no Christianity worth living and dying for without a daily taking up of the Cross and a following in the Golgotha-bound footsteps of the one who lived and died for us. This taking up of the Cross does not produce maudlin or miserable religion but offers abundant life to those with generosity of spirit, imagination, and daring (Jn 10:10)."
~ Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, CSSp

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Our Lord wants me to be a free nun covered with the poverty of the cross. Of free choice, my God, and out of love for you, I desire to remain and do whatever be your Holy will in my regard.
~Bl. Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Glory of God is always found in movements of love, in communication of life, never in static routine, cramped piety, thoughtless repetition of official acts, conventional observance, external religious acts that could easily become the letter that kills, the continuing tyranny of the old, sinful self. The Spirit, by contrast, is wind, fire, light, water, Glory: the unexpected, the transforming, the self-communicating, the self-outpouring Power that shapes by embracing and not letting go. The way of the disciple is necessarily a way of discipline, because discipleship is the living school in which we learn how to be like Christ by intimate association with him. ~Erasmo Leiva-Merikakis

Saturday, September 3, 2011

"I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about [Jesus]: 'I'm ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don't accept His claim to be God.' That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic---on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg---or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up as a fool, you can spit on Him and kill Him as a demon, or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to." ~ C. S. Lewis

Friday, September 2, 2011

Beware of no one more than of yourself; we carry our worst enemies within us. ~Charles Spurgeon

Thursday, September 1, 2011

"Living in Gods grace demands that we allow ourselves neither to get trapped in the past by sins nor suffocated by the future in our desire to control. We need to be reunited with God every moment of the day in prayer." ~Mark Hart

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible.
~St Thomas Aquinas

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

How kind is our sacramental Jesus! When you visit him, he forgets your sins and speaks only of his joy, his tenderness, and his love. By the reception he gives to you, one would think he has need of you to make him happy. ~ St. Peter Julian Eymard

Monday, August 29, 2011

"We will know God to the extent that we are set free from ourselves." ~Benedict XVI

Sunday, August 28, 2011

“The exchange with God becomes real for us in prayer: by his Holy Spirit, God comes to dwell within us. By his word and by the sacraments, Christ gives himself to us. In return, we can surrender everything to him.” ~ Brother Alois of Taize'

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Before you had a being, God loved you. Before your father or mother was born, God loved you: yes, even before the creation of the world, God loved you.... God loved you from eternity.
~St. Alphonsus Liguori

Friday, August 26, 2011

"Our faith has deepened as we've come to understand that when we suffer, Christ is fully able and willing to enter into even our innermost pain and walk that road with us. Furthermore, in trusting Christ and offering up our suffering to unite with His, we somehow become participants in God's unfathomably merciful plan of salvation. We are not simply recipients of God's grace; we are also invited to play a role in the working out of His grace in the world. And we are accompanied by a "cloud of witnesses", to quote St. Paul in his letter to the Hebrews – a community of saints to help us on our faith journey by the shining example of their lives on earth and their continued intercession for us in heaven." ~Laura Locke

Thursday, August 25, 2011

“The true and solid peace of nations consists not in equality of arms, but in mutual trust alone.” ~Pope John XXIII

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The beloved of the love of God came through the fountain of life to nourish us back to life and to help us in our dangerous state. The Word is the deepest and sweetest love preparing us for repentance. ~St. Hildegard of Bingen

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Things Worthy of God

We should ask of God things worthy of God...not unholy gifts, but holy ones; not earthly, but heavenly ones---gifts compatible with virtues. ~St. Peter Chrysologus

Monday, August 22, 2011

One who wants to overcome vices should fight with the arms of love, not rage. ~St. Peter Chrysologus

Sunday, August 21, 2011

All In The Family

I am the same family as Christ----what more could I want? ~Bl. Pope John XXIII

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Sow God's word

Sow, sow God's word! Make good on the talents entrusted to you!... Be enterprising in your use of them. ~ St. Catherine of Siena

Friday, August 19, 2011

Christ gives meaning to the universe

This wisdom and prudence will guide your steps, nothing will make you fear and peace will reign in your hearts. Then you will be blessed and happy and your happiness will influence others. They will wonder what the secret of your life is and they will discover that the rock which underpins the entire building and upon which rests your whole existence in the very person of Christ, your friend, brother and Lord, the Son of God incarnate, who gives meaning to all the universe. ~Pope Benedict XVI

Thursday, August 18, 2011


Commitment is doing what you said you would do after the feeling you said it in has passed.
~St. Camillus De Lellis

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Seed of Salvation

Christ sowed the seed of salvation in humanity in order that it might grow especially in each individual soul. ~St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Let us be rooted and grounded in charity so that we may comprehend what is the length of eternity, the breadth of liberality, the height of majesty, and the depth of discerning wisdom. ~St. Bonaventure

Monday, August 15, 2011

Feast of the Assumption

Belonging to the communion of saints means being connected with all people transformed by the Spirit of Jesus. This connection is deep and intimate. Those who have lived as brothers and sisters of Jesus continue to live within us, even though they have died, just as Jesus continues to live within us, even though he has died.

We live our lives in memory of Jesus and the saints, and this memory is a real presence. Jesus and his saints are part of our most intimate and spiritual knowledge of God. They inspire us, guide us, encourage us, and give us hope. They are the source of our constant transformation. Yes, we carry them in our bodies and thus keep them alive for all with whom we live and work. ~ Fr. Henri J.M. Nouwen

Saturday, August 13, 2011

O Word, your wisdom is like that bush you deigned to show to Moses; it burns but it doesn't burn out. ~St. Maria Magadalene De'Pazzi

Friday, August 12, 2011

O God, let me see the eternal good that lies in earthly adversity.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Feast of St. Clare of Assisi


The Lord give you peace.

Yesterday marked 10 years to the day that I made my first profession of vows as a diocesan hermit; today marks 4 years to the day since my profession of final vows.

I am writing to thank you for your support of my vocation as I try to be faithful to Christ in this little adventure in Gospel living to which He has invited me. Please continue to pray for me, a sinner, as I try, however falteringly at times, to "press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus" (Phil 3:14).

Be assured of my prayers that you, dear reader, may continue to grow into "the full stature of Christ" (Eph 4:13) which is our common baptismal call to holiness.

May you have a Christ-filled day.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

To Love Solitude

To love solitude and to seek it does not mean constantly traveling from one geographical possibility to another. A man becomes a solitary at the moment when, no matter what may be his external surroundings, he is suddenly aware of his own inalienable solitude....From that moment, solitude is not potential---it is actual. ~Thomas Merton

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

In Greek, the root meaning of repentance is not the confession of a sin but a change of mind. ~Tertullian

Monday, August 8, 2011

Nothing seems tiresome or painful when you are working for a Master who pays well; who rewards even a cup of cold water given for love of him.
~St. Bernadine of Siena

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The power of the Lord's word enters the soul and enlivens the heart and makes us rejoice in the Lord. ~ Dame Julian of Norwich

Saturday, August 6, 2011

God, give me the courage to be revolutionary as your Son Jesus Christ was... Teach me to stand up free and to shun no criticism. God, it is for your kingdom. ~Henri J.M. Nouwen

Friday, August 5, 2011

Through the Holy Spirit hearts are raised up, the weak are led by the hand, and those who are making progress are perfected.
~St. Basil the Great

Thursday, August 4, 2011

For the kingdom to come in this world, disciples must have the competence to see and the courage to act, which is a call to do as Jesus did, working for justice through loving service to the poor. ~Constitution of the Congregation of Holy Cross Brothers

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

True spiritual life consists in this: that one keep one's eye on God all the time, long for nothing but God, keep nothing in mind but God, begin every single action in the Lord's name, and direct it to the Lord." ~St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

If I am in need of light and prudence in order to discharge my burdensome duties, I draw nigh my Savior and seek counsel and light from him. ~St. Thomas More

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Sacred Heart of Christ is an inexhaustible fountain, and its sole desire is to pour itself out into the hearts of the humble. ~St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

Friday, July 15, 2011


Leaving the blogosphere for Annual Retreat.

Be back August 01, 2001.

Please pray for me, a sinner.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

I come from God; hence, I belong to God. I am destined for God, who is not only my creator and my master, but also my last end. Thus my end is to know God, to love God, to serve God. ~St. Ignatius of Loyola

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

We are all made in the image and likeness of God. ... In order to be ourselves, we need to be like Him. Jesus told us frequently, "Come follow me." You could say that we are programmed to imitate somebody, or more accurately, we are programmed to imitate Somebody with a Capital S.

A lot of people in today's world have the idea that we are supposed to be completely independent, and that being ourselves means being as weird and offbeat as possible. I'm sure you know people who try to express themselves by calling attention to themselves through wearing strange clothes, getting weird tattoos and piercings. ...

In spite of this modern emphasis on individuality, the urge to follow and to imitate cannot be driven completely from our minds. But many of our peers, our friends and neighbors have never had an encounter with Jesus Christ, the God Man. So, they can't figure out whom to follow. They follow pop stars or sports heroes or political figures, all the while going to great lengths to distinguish themselves and demonstrate their uniqueness.

The irony of this pose of independence is that Jesus is the one person we can follow and not lose ourselves or our identity. In fact we become more ourselves than ever. We can become the best versions of ourselves, by following Jesus. ~Jennifer Roback Morse

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Go ahead! Courage! In the spiritual life one who does not go forward goes backward. 
~St. Pio of Pietrelcina

Saturday, July 9, 2011

“Even in the midst of this life of tears and tribulations, what happiness, what great joy it is to realize that we are God’s flock! He keeps watch over us when we are awake; He keeps watch over us when we sleep. A flock belonging to a man feels secure in the care of its human shepherd; how much safer should we feel when our shepherd is God? Not only does He lead us to pasture, but He even created us.” ~St. Augustine

Friday, July 8, 2011

Let the will of the Lord be thy delight and joy. Let neither thy desires draw thee on, nor they fears dishearten thee. ~Ven. Maria of Agreda

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Contemplation is a way to hear with the Spirit and not with the head. Contemplation is the search for a wide open space. This space is broad enough for the head to have room in it; it’s broad enough for the heart, the feelings, the gut, the subconscious, our memories, our institutions, for our whole body. We need a holistic place for hearing. Christians have to go to this place if they’re looking for wisdom. If we don’t produce any more wise men and women, then the reason is that we have forgotten the art of contemplation. ~Fr. Richard Rohr, ofm

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Thank, thanks be to you, Eternal Father! I am imperfect and full of darkness, but you, perfection and light, have shown me to perfection and the way of your Son. I was dead and you brought me to life. ~St. Catherine of Siena

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

There is a general rule concerning all special graces granted to any human being. Whenever the divine favor chooses someone to receive a special grace, or to accept a lofty vocation, God adorns the person chosen with all the gifts of the Spirit needed to fulfill the task at hand. ~St. Bernadine of Siena

Monday, July 4, 2011

It is not possible to live and grow in the faith without the support of a group, of a Christian community. It is here that you will learn together to build a better world. ~Bl. Pope John Paul II 

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Praise Our God, You Silent Green Forest

Praise our God, you silent green forest,
Praise our God, you deepest blue sea.
Praise our God, tall mountains before us,
Now let all creatures praise the Great Harmony!

People of earth and rulers of nations
God the Sov'reign forms our days!
Women and men, young children and elders
Dance with creation singing God's praise!

~ Jim Strathdee

Saturday, July 2, 2011

One of the greatest gifts that the Holy Spirit can bestow on us is peace in time of struggle, calm in the midst of trouble, so that in time of desolation we are armed with a strong courage.
~ St. Claude De la Colombiere

Thursday, June 30, 2011

A Joyful Heart

A joyful heart is more easily made perfect that one that is cast down. ~St. Philip Neri

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Seeking Knowledge

"Some seek knowledge for the sake of knowledge: that is curiosity. Others seek knowledge that they may themselves be known: that is vanity. But there are still others who seek knowledge in order to serve and edify others, and that is charity." 
~St. Bernard of Clairvaux

Monday, June 27, 2011


Evangelism is not what we tell people, unless what we tell is totally consistent with who we are. It is who we are that is going to make the difference....If we do not have love in our hearts, our words of love will have little meaning. If we do not truly enjoy our faith, nobody is going to catch the fire of enjoyment from us. If our lives are not totally centered on Christ, we will not be Christ-bearers for others, no matter how pious our words. ~Madeleine L'Engle

Friday, June 24, 2011

Where Happiness Cannot Be Found

God is now showing men what a great mistake they make when they try to do without Him, when they regard earthly enjoyment as their highest good, and thus reverse the whole scale of values, or, as the ancient philosophers put it, the subordination of ends. As though in the hope of compensating for the poor quality of earthly goods, men are striving to increase their quantity; they are trying to produce as much as possible in the order of material enjoyment. They are constructing machinery with the object of increasing production at a greater profit. This is the ultimate objective. But what is the consequence ? The surplus cannot be disposed of; it is wasted, and unemployment is the result. The worker starves in enforced idleness while others die of surfeit. The present state of the world is called a crisis. But in fact it is more than a crisis; it is a condition of affairs which, if men only had eyes to see, ought to be revealing, it ought to show men that they have sought their last end where it is not to be found, in earthly enjoyment -- instead of God. They are seeking happiness in an abundance of material possessions which are incapable of giving it; possessions which sow discord among those that seek them, and a greater discord according as they are sought with greater avidity. Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange

Thursday, June 23, 2011

And Then God Said....

So, in light of all the fuss surrounding the recent fall from grace of a certain well-known Catholic evangelist and my sometimes rather uncharitable comments regarding his demise, the Lord directed me to the following few lines from St. Catherine of Siena, Doctor of the Church:
Those in union with God, when aware of the sins of others, live in this gentle light... Therefore they are always peaceful and calm, and nothing can scandalize them because they have done away with what causes them to take scandal, their self-will... Even when they see something that is clearly sinful, they do not pass judgment, but rather feel a holy and genuine compassion, praying for the sinner. St. Catherine of Siena
And then God said unto me: "Please shut up!" 

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

"Cor Meum Est Templum Sacrum"
[My Heart Is a Holy Place]
by Patricia Van Ness

My heart is a holy place
Wiser and holier than I know it to be
Wiser than my lips can speak
A spring of mystery and grace.

You have created my heart
And have filled it with things of wonder.
You have sculpted it, shaped it with your hands
Touched it with Your breath.
In its own season it reveals itself to me.
It shows me rivers of gold
Flowing in elegance
And hidden paths of infinite beauty.

You touch me with Your stillness as
   I await its time.
You have made it a dwelling place
   of richness and intricacies
Of wisdom beyond my understanding
Of grace and mysteries, from your hands.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Praying in the Spirit

Do not imagine, my beloved, that prayer consists solely of words, or that it can be learned by means of words. Listen to the truth of the matter from our Lord! Spiritual prayer is not learned and does not reach fullness as a result of learning, for it is not to a person that you are praying, before whom you can repeat a well-composed speech. It is to him who is Spirit that you are directing the movements of prayer. You should pray, therefore, in spirit, seeing that God is Spirit. ~Abraham of Nathpar  (6th century)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

No Cross, No Crown

You must be prepared for periods of darkness, anxiety, doubts, fears, of temptations that are sometimes very, very insistent, of sufferings of the body and, what is a hundredfold more painful, of the soul.... If there were no trials, there would be no struggle. Without a struggle, victory would be impossible, and without victory, there is no crown, no reward. ~St. Maximilian Kolbe

Friday, June 17, 2011


I believe in the surprises of the Holy Spirit. The story of the Church is a long story, filled with the wonders of the Holy Spirit. Why should we think God's imagination and love might be exhausted? ~Leon Joseph Cardinal Suenens

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Holy Eucharist

The Holy Eucharist is my heaven on earth, and before it I will adore, as the angels and saints adore before the throne of the Lamb in heaven. ~St. Peter Julian Eymard

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

True Holiness

True holiness does not mean flight from the world; rather, it lies in the effort to incarnate the Gospel in life, in the family, at school and at work, and in social and political involvement. ~Bl. Pope John Paul II

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Providence of God...

Providence of my God, I adore you in all your designs. I place my destiny in your hands, confiding to you all that I have, all that I am, and all that I am to become. ~Bl. John Martin Moye

Monday, June 13, 2011

Whatever We Have Comes From You

Whatever we have comes from you...Let us give with equally generous hands to those who are poor, breaking bread and sharing our bread with them. For you have told us that whatever we give to the poor we give to you.~Alcuin of York

Sunday, June 12, 2011

But in our intention we wait for God, and trust faithfully to have mercy and grace; and this is how in goodness God opens the eye of our understanding, by which we have sight, sometimes more and sometimes less, according to the ability God gives us to receive.  ~Julian of Norwich

Friday, June 10, 2011

United With God

Unite your heart with God... Remember always that God is eternal, and work courageously in order one day to be united with God forever. ~St. Damien Joseph De Veuster

Thursday, June 9, 2011

We Need Grace

How contrary to human nature are the divine teachings! Without the help of grace, it would be impossible not only to follow them but even to understand them. ~St. Therese of Lisieux

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Swimming against the tide

Jesus enables you to know at first hand the love of God the Father; he helps you realize that your happiness comes from his friendship, from fellowship with him. Why? Because we have been created and saved by love, and it is only in love, the love which desires and seeks the good of others, that we truly experience the meaning of life and find happiness in living it, even amid difficulties, trials and disappointments, even when it means swimming against the tide. ~Pope Benedict XVI, June 4, 2011

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Good Shepherd, seek me...

Good Shepherd, seek me, a lamb, and do not overlook me in my wanderings. ~from the Byzantine canon of St. Andrew of Crete

Monday, June 6, 2011

My Way, My Truth, My Life

Jesus, my Way,
lead me along the path of holiness
Jesus, my Truth,
enlighten my mind to your wisdom
Jesus, my Life,
give me the courage to live for you alone

Sunday, June 5, 2011

A Great Task Awaits Us

To sense God near, to mediate, to pray, to gather our thoughts so as to reflect on them more deeply, that is to live the inner life, and this interior life is the greatest joy. Such inspiring thoughts and ardent desires and and generous resolutions, however, should be translated into action, for we are in the midst of life and a great task awaits us. This is the time for painful effort. We must tear ourselves apart, give up thought for reality, face action, know that we will either not be understood at all or completely misunderstood, and that we will perhaps suffer at human hands for having willed the good of humanity. We must already have drawn from God an incomparable strength, and armed our hearts with patience and love, in order to undertake day by day and hour by hour that work that belongs to all Christians: the moral and material salvation of our brothers and sisters.

The task that the world at present offers us, the moral renewal, the transformation and education of souls, is so immense that it may well confound us. What can be dine in the face of evil and indifference by someone as obscure as I? Nothing of myself, no doubt, but all through and with God. I believe that no humble, unknown act or thought, seen by God alone, is lost, and that all, in fact, contribute to the good of others. I believe according to the saying...that "when we do good we know not how much good we do." What we have to do is to work on ourselves, to accomplish our own inner transformation, to fulfill our obligations and do all the good that we can ,each day and each hour. Above all, we must ask God to fill us with an intense charity. Charity is the love of God that renews and transforms us and our lives, and becomes the hidden source of our actions, our love of all creatures, our powerful and vital love of souls, our love of all who suffer and grieve. Such love can save the world. Why complain hen we can act? Why hate, since hate destroys, when that divine love enlivens and transforms our hearts? ~ Elizabeth Leseur

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Waiting Openhandedly

To wait openhandedly is an enormously radical attitude toward life. So is to trust that something will happen to us that is far beyond our imaginings. So, too, is giving up control over our future and letting God define our life, trusting that God molds us according to God's love and not according to our fear. The spiritual life is a life in which we wait, actively present to the moment, trusting that new things will happen to us, new things that are far beyond our own imagination, fantasy, or prediction. That, indeed, is a very radical stance toward life in a world preoccupied with control. ~Henri J. M. Nouwen

Friday, June 3, 2011

Changing the World

"What we would like to do is change the world--make it a little simpler for people to feed, clothe, and shelter themselves as God intended them to do. And, by fighting for better conditions, by crying out unceasingly for the rights of the workers, the poor, of the destitute--the rights of the worthy and the unworthy poor, in other words--we can, to a certain extent, change the world; we can work for the oasis, the little cell of joy and peace in a harried world. We can throw our pebble in the pond and be confident that its ever widening circle will reach around the world. We repeat, there is nothing we can do but love, and, dear God, please enlarge our hearts to love each other, to love our neighbor, to love our enemy as our friend." ~Dorothy Day

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Becoming Fully Ourselves

Through Baptism, our life is already hidden with Christ in God -- in our current existence we are already 'raised' with him at the Father's right hand (cf. Col 3:1-3). If we enter fully into the essence of our Christian life, then we really do touch the risen Lord, and then we really do become fully ourselves. ~Pope Benedict XVI

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Here's Something To Think About

Why do psychics have to ask you for your name?

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Facing the Silence

On the spiritual journey it takes more energy to be still than to run. [M]ost people spend so much of their waking hours rushing from one thing to another that they are afraid of stillness and of silence. A certain existential panic can overtake us when we first face the stillness. . . .But if we can find the courage to face this silence, we enter into the peace that is beyond all understanding.
No doubt it is easier to learn this in a balanced and stable society. In a turbulent and confused world there are so many more deceptive voices, so many calls for our attention. But the Christian vision is uncompromising in its sanity, its rejection of extremism, in its invitation to each of us to have the courage to become ourselves and not merely to respond to some image of ourselves that is imposed upon us from outside. [. . . .]
What each of us must learn in the experience of meditation is that the power for the pilgrimage is in fact inexhaustibly present. It takes only one step of faith for us to know that from our own experience. [And] the important thing to remember is that one faltering but actual step is more valuable than any number of journeys performed in the imagination.
~Fr. John Main, OSB