A Spirituality of Advent

Advent is a time of preparation. It has many parallels to Lent: we don the purple, we suppress the Gloria (awaiting the angels to sing it again for the first time at Midnight Mass), and we are given weeks to allow the Holy Spirit to prepare … [Read more...]

Five Tips for Graduate School

During my first semester of graduate school in theology, the required class on the Trinity nearly “ate my lunch”. To put it simply, I could never study enough to understand the subject more, nor could I seem to improve my papers enough to el … [Read more...]

On Prayer

Let me share some reflections by Baroness Catherine de Hueck Doherty and St. Francis de Sales, including inspirations in prayer, liberty of spirit, prayer and solitude, dryness and prayer, prayer and mystical theology, methods of prayer, … [Read more...]

Fallen from Our First Love

“Could you not watch with Me for one hour?… Keep watch and pray” (Matthew 26:40-41) There are many sources of evil plaguing our society. However, we as a Church must be reinvigorated by the consoling certainty of God’s Word, especially wh … [Read more...]

Praying on Cue

It's 3:10 on Friday afternoon and your boss hands you an urgent request. It’s from an important client, and you have to handle it by close of business. You’re already managing way too many tasks and projects, but the boss insists, so you add … [Read more...]

The Philosopher’s Reflections on the Rosary

“I Don’t Know How You’ll Help Me, But I Know You Will” Why would a philosopher go to bat for the Rosary? I’d better ‘fess up right off. I’ve never been able to convince myself that I’m a philosopher, even though I own a Ph.D. in that disc … [Read more...]

Prayer as Energy for the Road

Every man has two journeys to make through life. There is the outer journey, with its various incidents and milestones. There is also an inner journey, a spiritual odyssey, with a secret history of its own. (William Inge) Like our physical … [Read more...]

Helping the Souls in Purgatory

Her husband had died some months previously when she asked a priest, “How can I get Bill into heaven?” The priest responded, “You attend Mass every day: offer your Mass for him. That’s very powerful.” The Council of Trent taught that t … [Read more...]

Screen Time, Sacred Time

Could Tech Use Affect Your Ability to Pray?

Let me begin with a story I read a while ago that really got me thinking about screen time.[1.This article is based on a parish education presentation given in May 2017 at Saint Mary of the Visitation Catholic Parish, Elm Grove, … [Read more...]

Using the Means at Hand for Spiritual Growth

When retreatants ask for suggestions about how to deepen their prayer and to grow in their spiritual lives, their directors might have suggestions about some new approach to try. But often it is better to encourage people to work patiently … [Read more...]

The Interface of Spirituality and Theology in Leontius of Jerusalem and Theodore the Studite

Lex orandi, lex credendi: the law of prayer is the law of belief. This maxim, attributed to the fifth century writer, Prosper of Aquitaine, pithily expresses the inherent link between theology and spirituality. The way in which one connects … [Read more...]

Prayer as the Key to Forgiveness

At times, the word "unforgiven" can be terrifying, especially if someone does not forgive us. We do not know what to think or what to do. Evil is all around us, and within us, and can easily magnify when forgiving is not practiced. However, … [Read more...]

Ministerial Rosary Reflections for Priests

The Church regards the month of October as the rosary month, a practice encouraged by many pontiffs, most especially Pope Leo XIII. Many of our parishioners will dedicate themselves to praying the rosary this month. Some will do so at their … [Read more...]

Beginning Each Day in the Presence of God

The Importance of the Morning Offering

We’ve all heard, and we all know from experience, how important it is to start the day off right. If we wake up grumpy, or overly tired, it is much more difficult to face the challenges of each day cheerfully and with optimism. How often do … [Read more...]

A Garden Unfinished

O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer you my prayers, works, joys, and sufferings of this day in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world. I offer them for all the intentions of your Sacred Heart: … [Read more...]