daily life

"The Holy Family (detail)" by Murillo

Writer’s Block, Ordinary Time, and Grace

During the first weeks of Ordinary Time, whether it is after Christmas or Easter, I generally find myself faced with writer’s block.  Is it the mental overload of Christmas or Easter? Is it the busyness of work as we get back into the routine? Is it the weather? This week there aren’t even any large feast days on the liturgical […]

"The Adoration of the Magi" (detail) by Jan de Bray

Four Ways to Keep Christmas With You

After the calendar turns over its last page and the New Year’s celebrations have come and gone, I’m the one stubbornly still telling people “Merry Christmas!,” no matter what crazy looks I get. I’m listening to Christmas music as I type this, and the Magi of my Nativity scene are still over on a bookcase, making their way to their […]

"Adoration of the Shepherds" (detail) by Murillo

Witness of the Shepherds

As we continue to ponder the familiar stories of the infancy narratives throughout the Christmas season, we imitate our Blessed Mother, who “kept all these things in her heart” (Luke 2:51). The first time we see that phrase in Luke’s Gospel (our indication of where he gathered source material for his infancy account) occurs during the visit of the shepherds […]