Easter

New Life in Christ

"The Resurrection of Christ" (detail) by Bloch

Christ is Risen! Truly He is Risen! What more fitting conclusion to a week of drama wrought by sin could there be than the triumph of Life over death! There is so much about Easter to help us live our lives in our day. Surely we can more fully embrace all that the Resurrection of Jesus Christ means for us today if we go […]

Crossing the Threshold of Holy Week

"The First Eucharist" by Juan de Juanes

It caught me by surprise that the Carmelite Sisters keep a complete and prayerful silence during the Holy Triduum of Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday, not speaking until the conclusion of the evening Easter Vigil Mass on Holy Saturday. I remember when I was the “new kid on the block,” a recently-arrived postulant who was learning more and […]

How the Weakness of the Cross Makes Us Strong

Photograph © by Andy Coan

“When I am weak, then I am strong”; “power made perfect in weakness.” Such verses are often cited as key to spiritual growth, but do we really understand what they are talking about? Can anyone ever understand? Yes. If we couldn’t understand it at all, God would not have told it to us. God does not waste words. It is […]

The Gifts and Charisms of the Holy Spirit

Photography © by Andy Coan

Without Pentecost, the Gospel is not truly Good News.  For the seven gifts and Pentecostal charisms given by the Holy Spirit on this birthday celebration of the Church Catholic are essential for the success of our mission and indispensable for a joyful, victorious Christian life. his essay on the seven gifts and Pentecostal charisms of the Holy Spirit is a reflection […]

Love Unlimited

Photography © by Andy Coan

Some view the Catholic Church as multi-national corporation.  If so, its DBA should be Love Unlimited.  In contrast to ever natural love, the love that should categorize the life of the church is charity, agape, God’s love which is, like God, universal, infinite,  without limits or boundaries. This post focuses on the business of the Catholic Church as unlimited universal […]

Is Jesus the Only Savior?

Photography © by Andy Coan

The image of Jesus as the Good shepherd is a comforting one in the minds of many.  But many of those who first heard Jesus describe himself in this way were deeply disturbed.  For it seems that Jesus is setting himself up as the only true Shepherd and savior.  People still find this claim disturbing.  “What about other religions?,” they […]

He’s No Ghost!

Photography © by Andy Coan

On the first Easter, the Risen Lord makes clear to his frightened disciples he not a ghost or specter and in so doing shows why the gnostic gospels are bogus and did not make it into the Bible. his post shows how the risen Lord was no ghost but had flesh and blood.  It reflects on the Mass readings for the […]

Trust in Jesus and His Divine Mercy

Vilnius Image of Divine Mercy (detail) by Kazimierowski

Jesus Asks for the Feast of the Divine Mercy Happy Easter! Jesus loves you so much! He desires you to be washed in His mercy and be in communion with Him. Jesus appeared to a young Polish girl, St. Faustina, beginning in 1924, before she entered religious life. He gave her a series of messages and an image of His […]

The Sacrament of Mercy

Photography © by Andy Coan

Divine Mercy Sunday or the Octave of Easter presents us with one of the most famous of gospel stories — the story of Doubting Thomas. But it shows us how and when the sacrament of pena This post focuses on the relation between Divine Mercy Sunday, the unbelief of Doubting Thomas, and the sacrament of penance, reconciliation and confession.  The […]

The Paschal Mystery

Photography © by Carmelite Sister of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angeles

Burning but not consumed! This was the strange sight that Moses beheld in the desert—a bush on fire yet contained. Such a strange phenomenon! Moses moved closer to examine the mystery before him. “No, Moses, stop where you are and remove your sandals for this is holy ground!” This was no natural mystery as Moses would now realize, but one […]