Light of the World

"Charity of St. Elizabeth of Hungary" (detail) by Edmund Blair Leighton

How to Respond When You Meet Suffering

In 2005 while undergoing chemotherapy, I was sitting in an uncomfortable recliner on the sixth floor of the medical facility. An IV dripped poison into my veins that would simultaneously cure me of the cancer in my body, and wreak havoc on it, sending waves of nausea, chills, malaise. The concoction did not discriminate between healthy and cancer cells. It […]

A Soul’s Hearth

As I walked into the church for Mass last Sunday, I noticed right away the candles had been trimmed too long.  They looked like a half dozen lit bottle rockets lined up on the reredos, in anticipation of the dazzling finale in a Fourth of July pyrotechnic display.  My mind filled with strains of Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture.  Smoke was billowing upward […]

Photography © by Andy Coan

Encountering the Word — Luke 1:76-79

“And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, to give knowledge of salvation to his people in the forgiveness of their sins, through the tender mercy of our God, when the day shall dawn upon[l] us from on high to give light to those who […]

Photography © by Andy Coan

Encountering the Word — Luke 11:33-36

“No one after lighting a lamp puts it in a cellar or under a bushel, but on a stand, that those who enter may see the light. Your eye is the lamp of your body; when your eye is sound, your whole body is full of light; but when it is not sound, your body is full of darkness. Therefore […]

Finding Fulfillment Instead of Dissatisfaction

Have you ever felt Dissatisfied and Unfulfilled? Do you ever feel as if you are missing out on something important or falling just short of some goal or purpose? Maybe you are unable to put adequate words to this feeling, you just know there is something out of balance in your life—something lacking. We sometimes experience this as a vague […]

Daily Reflection — Light of Christ

“Hark! a herald voice is calling through the shadows of the night. Cast away the dreams of darkness, Christ descends with heavenly light.” (from a hymn for Lauds on December 17). This life that we directly experience and live through our five material senses can seem to be all that there is. But the reality is that we see only […]

"Christ, the Good Shepherd" (detail) by Murillo

Daily Reflection — The One Who Cares for You

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1) For generations, the people of Judah and Israel lived in an oppressive spiritual darkness. The time was fast approaching its fullness when God would enter into His creation and the people would […]

Photography © by Andy Coan

The deeper meaning of Christmas lights

As fall moves onward towards winter we have places to go, things to do, people to meet.  Yet as we go about our business, we notice the days are getting shorter.  Sweaters come out of storage, we close the windows, and turn on the heat. Advent is a season where we stop and remember that the light of this world […]