Holy Mass

"Christ's Entry into Jerusalem" by Hippolyte Flandrin

The Paradox of the Cross — Joy in the Midst of Sorrow

The Cross is the great paradox of Christianity. More than a few people have asked me over the years why the Catholic Church focuses so prominently and persistently on the Crucifix. One inquirer even suggested that the Crucifix hanging above the Altar is too intense a reminder of the sorrow in the world and that she would never join a […]

Pope Francis (neneo / Shutterstock.com)

Daily Catholic Quote — from Pope Francis

“Therefore the Eucharistic Celebration is much more than simple banquet: it is exactly the memorial of Jesus’ Pascal Sacrifice, the mystery at the centre of salvation. Memorial does not simply mean a remembrance, a mere memory; it means that every time we celebrate this Sacrament we participate in the mystery of the passion, death and resurrection of Christ.” (Pope Francis, […]

Chiesa Dei Santi Michele e Gaetano, Florence, Italy

Moments of Grace

“Safe travels… ciao, ciao!” Antonio shouted with a warm smile and a hug.  The meetings were over, business trip complete and it was time for me to fly back to Atlanta.  After a full week of meetings in Florence, Italy, followed by customer dinners each night, much was accomplished and I was tired. I walked outside the convention hall; the […]

The Simplicity of Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving may be my favorite holiday.  I only hesitate a little in saying that because it’s a close race with the greatest of feasts in our Church calendar, Christmas and Easter.  But there are a few reasons I really love Thanksgiving. While the Church year is filled to the brim with feasts, this one is a feast celebrated outside the […]

Catholic Prayer Hacks

I’m not what most people would call holy, but I do hope to become so.  I’ll need a lot of grace and prayers for it to happen.  We’re all essentially lazy.  Well, some of us are.  Okay, I am, at least.  I’m lazy.  And I know it.  So, I like to look for short cuts, easier ways.  I like to […]

"The First Eucharist" by Juan de Juanes

The Gift I Want to Give Back

I’m a dry-eyed gal most of the time, and I have always prided myself on that trait. Then I started going to Mass. I certainly didn’t mean to turn into a blubbering mess.  At the time, I was a tough know-it-all college graduate, and I was only there because this good-looking Prince Charming of mine insisted that he had to […]

Mission Dolores Altar (San Francisco) Photograph © by Andy Coan

Daily Catholic Quote — from St. John Vianney

“When we leave the holy banquet, we are as happy as the Wise Men would have been, if they could have carried away the Infant Jesus.” (St. Jean-Baptiste Marie Vianney, Cure d’Ars) The Memorial of St. John Mary Vianney, Priest (1786 – 1859) is August 4. Print this entry

Going Out the Door

Do I get an indulgence for walking out a holy door? Our diocese has a few holy doors for this Year of Mercy, and one is in my parish. I think of the great graces I have the chance to receive on a weekly basis as I go to Sunday Mass, and I always try to enter through the doors […]

What We Can Learn from Clergy Assignments

Last Sunday, the choir at my parish took me by surprise by singing “Totus Tuus” by Marco Frisina for the meditation after communion. Though I’ve only heard the song a few times, it never fails to take me back to the emotional weeks surrounding Pope John Paul II’s death and funeral. I was given the grace of being in Rome […]