Lent

Struggling with a Restless Heart

“Thou movest us to delight in praising Thee; for Thou hast formed us for Thyself, and our hearts are restless till they find rest in Thee” (St. Augustine, Confessions). I think most writers are naturally introspective and reflective.  While praying in preparation for Lent not long ago, I prayed for strength and courage to stay focused on the path Christ […]

Confessionals

The Heavy Burdens We Carry

I have been thinking a great deal about my experience at Reconciliation this past Saturday. I felt an intense and unexplainable urge to go and confess my sins when I woke up that morning after having been deprived of this Sacrament during the coronavirus pandemic. I try to go every six weeks or so, but this was no routine visit […]

Photo by Alexandre Lecocq on Unsplash

The Selfie Culture

“Once we take our eyes away from ourselves—from our interests, from our own rights, privileges, ambitions—then we will become clear to see Jesus around us.” (Saint Teresa of Calcutta) Have you fallen victim to the selfie culture?  Well, I have!  Not necessarily pictures of me all the time.  More often pictures of my adorable and talented grandchildren, wonderful vacation spots, great restaurants, fun […]

"Christ the Consolator" (detail) by Carl Heinrich Bloch (1834-1890) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

God and the Coronavirus

How many times have you heard people say, “If God really exists, why does He let people get cancer or brain tumors?” Or, “If there really is a God, why does He allow wars and famine?” Or, “Where is God when we need Him most?” Well it occurred to me during this time of the world-wide, coronavirus pandemic called Covid-19, […]

St. Joseph and the Christ-Child, Belmont Abbey

Journey with St. Joseph

This year the first day of spring falls on March 19, 2020.  St. Joseph’s Day!  Spring brings a certain stillness to the earth. A waiting. A time of hushed expectancy. Seeds are planted and their growth is a quiet one – a hidden growth deep in the soil followed by the tender shoots stretching through the earth and reaching for the sun. […]

"The Transfiguration" (detail) by Raphael - Alvesgaspar / CC BY-SA

Suffering Transfigured by Love

Reflection on the Mass readings for the Second Sunday of Lent (Year A) — Genesis 12:1-4; Psalms 33:4-5, 18-19, 20, 22; Second Timothy 1:8-10; Matthew 17:1-9. The love in which God embraces each of us is one of the great truths revealed to us throughout salvation history, but especially through and in Jesus Christ. To come to a better and deeper understanding of […]

Be Reconciled

“Be perfect… in mercy.” Today’s Gospel is a hard one. There are so many sayings of Jesus to which we have become desensitized. There are parables and commands that have lost their radicality, simply because we have heard them so often. I think today’s Gospel is one such message. “You have heard that it was said to your ancestors, ‘You […]

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

The Desert in Carmelite Spirituality

“What did you go out to the wilderness to see?” (Matthew 11:7) These were Jesus’ words to the crowd. John took to the desert to draw people out into solitude to prepare their hearts for the coming of the Messiah. For many years the desert had become a place of encounter. In 1 Kings 19:1-8 a long time before John’s […]

Daily Lenten Reflection — From the Heart

“This day the Lord your God commands you to do these statutes and ordinances; you shall therefore be careful to do them with all your heart and with all your soul.” (Deuteronomy 26:16) God has loved and blessed us. Each of us has been placed in this life as pilgrims on a journey. The gift of Salvation is freely offered. […]

Photo by Gabriel Jimenez on Unsplash

Becoming More Human This Lent

“You weren’t created for this world- so for the next forty days, live like it.” This Sunday, the first reading might surprise us. It’s Lent, so we might expect to hear about fasting or penance. Perhaps we expect the first reading to be about sacrifice or suffering. Instead, we start at the beginning. We’re back in the Garden, with the […]