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Detail of Chair of St. Peter Dnalor 01, Rom, Vatikan, Petersdom, Cathedra Petri (Bernini) 4, Detail, CC BY-SA 3.0

Living Your Anointing

I am five years old.  I’m sitting in my bedroom, pondering as I tend to do at this age. “God, I just want you to know that I am here when you need me,” I silently pray as I gingerly caress a favorite image of Our Lady. “I want to do great things for You one day.” This was not […]

Venerable Jan Leopold Tyranowski (1940)

The Beauty of a Soul Opened Up by Grace

For those who love St. John Paul II, Saturday, January 21, 2017 was a big family celebration, when Pope Francis authorized the Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints to promulgate the decree of heroic virtues for Jan Tyranowski (1901-1947), the Polish tailor who played an indispensable role in helping the young Karol Wojtyla become a man of prayer and […]

The Crown | NETFLIX

“The Crown” and the Fundamental Values of Society

***Spoiler Alert*** The Netflix original series The Crown, which has to do with the last months of the reign of King George VI and the first years of the reign of his daughter, Queen Elizabeth II, is just the kind of program that Americans in particular seem naturally to love. It features beautiful photography of palaces, processions, and formal receptions; and […]

The War Between Doing and Being

Unquestionably, my life is full of continuous, often exasperating battles between doing and being. Culture tells us that we are valuable because of what we do. It speaks to our senses, every moment of every day, telling us we need to do more. Our worth is based on what we accomplish, how we achieve, the number of hours we put […]

Photography © by Andy Coan

Turn the Other Cheek?

“Love your enemies.”  “Turn the other cheek.”  (Matthew 5:38-40).  This sounds admirable to some, but preposterous to others.  The nineteenth century philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche thought such talk promotes a society of weaklings.  Karl Marx thought these words keep the oppressed under the thumbs of the capitalists. Does Jesus want us to be doormats, suckers who allow ourselves to be taken advantage […]

Love Your Enemies

I was reading a book about the parables the other day, and a statement by the author struck me – not because I didn’t know it, but because I realized that it had ceased to be revolutionary for me: “Only Jesus insists on loving the enemy … He may be the only person in antiquity to have given this instruction.” […]

Bride and Groom

On Marriage, Leadership and Honoring Our Wives

Marriage is in trouble everywhere, especially in our country with over half of marriages ending in divorce. Our culture, so influenced by Hollywood and materialism, has set about creating a society which no longer values marriage and the family in favor of one which glorifies selfishness, greed, and offers false idols for us to worship instead of God. As an […]

Photography © by Randy Hain

The Weight of Glory

We can believe we are mere mortals dreaming the dream of immortality, while in fact, we are immortals dreaming the terrible dream of mere mortality. We all know what the weight of glory is, whether or not we have read Lewis’ golden sermon. We know it from the magic words of the poets; or we know it from the wordless […]

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

Yes, Jesus loves me…

A heavy marine layer fell like a pall over Long Beach, California, bringing colder, damper weather. I had set aside the day to visit my sister and together we were going to visit our mom’s grave in All Souls’ Cemetery, right there on Cherry Avenue, just north of Memorial Hospital. We opened the car doors and began walking slowly to the site. […]

Cultivating Community to Support Mothers

It’s Not Enough To Tell Mothers To Stop Whining And Learn To Love Motherhood, We Have To Cultivate Community To Help Them… In an article entitled How To Stop Whining And Learn To Love Being A Mother, the author, Anna Mussman, addresses a malaise that has settled over the discussion of motherhood via social media. It’s obvious, Mussman claims, from […]