The Practice of Lectio Divina

“We hear the Scriptures at Mass, and perhaps we read them for knowledge – but are we praying the Scriptures?” Over the last few weeks, we have been looking at some practical aspects of cultivating a prayer life. It is important to remember that prayer is conversation. So often, my prayer time is filled with my list of petitions, maybe […]

The Active Work of Meditation

Photography by John Neff | Shutterstock

“Prayer involves our mind, heart, and will. It involves our intellect, memory, imagination, and emotions.” Last week, we looked at the importance of making a plan if we are going to cultivate a prayer life. Cultivating an active, healthy prayer life is difficult – not because it is against our nature, but because we are fallen human beings. We know […]

Plan to Pray

“Cultivating a prayer life requires building habits. And we do not build habits without a plan.” When I read Paul’s lament in Romans about consistently doing the thing we don’t want to do – even though we know what we should do (For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the […]

Monica, Augustine, and the Power of Prayer

Saint Augustine and his mother, Saint Monica

“If our loved one is indeed in purgatory, they would much rather have our prayers than our praise.” The end of August brings us back-to-back feast days of two great saints, Monica and Augustine. There are few saint stories as legendary as this one: the mother who prays for decades for the conversion of her son, who is very intelligent but […]

Working in the Vineyard: Joy or Burden?

  “What if we instead showed that those laborers in the vineyard had it better than the idlers in the market?” In the Gospel readings this week, we have been hearing about what it means to follow Christ. Lessons on the commandments and parables about the kingdom in a sense culminate in the first reading for Sunday’s liturgy. Joshua asks […]

Pope Pius XII and the Assumption

Ambrosius007 at en.wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

  “The beginning of the twentieth century witnessed extraordinary attacks on the truth that underlies this dogma…” Pope Pius XII declared in 1950, “The Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory” (Munificentissimus Deus, 44). While this is a revealed truth (we could not […]

The Transfiguration & the Promised Land

Transfiguration by Duccio di Buoninsegna (detail)

“The Transfiguration reminds us that the Cross will not have the final word.” Both the Eastern and Western Churches have celebrated the feast of the Transfiguration on this day for centuries, and celebration in Jerusalem dates back to the fifth century. We are exactly forty days from the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross. Before His Apostles experience the […]

The Gift and Challenge of the New Moses

"Mulitplication of the Loaves and Fishes" (detail) by Très Riches Heures

“Jesus wants to give us much more than free bread or liberation from earthly suffering. But we want to settle for much less.” In this Sunday’s Gospel we hear the continuation of the story of the multiplication of the loaves and fish that we began last Sunday. John tells us that after Jesus performs the dramatic miracle, the people begin to […]

Is It Worth Saying?

“The tongue can be a powerful instrument or a serious stumbling block in our quest for holiness.” As part of my move to full-time Catholic speaking and writing and setting a foundation for a new apostolate of sorts, I have been sifting through many of my old talks and articles. It has shown me where I have grown, spiritually and […]