Living the Faith

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 […]

The Three Most Profound Ideas I Have Ever Had

"Creation of Adam" (detail) by Michelangelo [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Ideas are more precious than diamonds. The three most precious ideas I have ever discovered all concern the love of God. None of them is original. But every one is revolutionary. None of them came from me. But all of them came to me with sudden force and fire: the “aha!” experience, the “eureka!” experience. They were all realizations, not […]

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 […]

The Winning Strategy

"St. Michael the Archangel" (detail) - via Wikimedia Commons - Guido Reni [Public domain]

Editor’s Note: Dr. Kreeft’s classic essay on successfully winning the culture wars is timeless. For more information, see his book, How to Win the Culture War. To win any war, the three most necessary things to know are: (1) that you are at war, (2) who your enemy is, and (3) what weapons or strategies can defeat him. You cannot […]

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 Heavy Burdens We Carry

Confessionals

I have been thinking a great deal about my experience at Reconciliation this past Saturday morning. I felt an intense and unexplainable urge to go and confess my sins when I woke up that morning.  I try to go every six weeks or so, but this was no routine visit to the priest for me. I needed to unburden myself […]