The Eighth Sacrament

 

THERE is a little “now word” that has been stuck in my thoughts for years, if not decades. And that is the growing need for authentic Christian community. While we have seven sacraments in the Church, which are essentially “encounters” with the Lord, I believe one could also speak of an “eighth sacrament” based on Jesus’ teaching:Continue reading

All the Difference

 

CARDINAL Sarah was blunt: “A West that denies its faith, its history, its roots, and its identity is destined for contempt, for death, and disappearance.” [1]cf. The African Now Word Statistics reveal that this is not a prophetic warning—it’s a prophetic fulfillment:Continue reading

   [ + ]

1. cf. The African Now Word

The African Now Word

Cardinal Sarah kneels before the Blessed Sacrament in Toronto (University of St Michael’s College)
Photo: Catholic Herald

 

CARDINAL Sarah has given a stunning, perceptive and prescient interview in the Catholic Herald today. It not only repeats “the now word” in terms of the warning that I have been compelled to speak for over a decade, but most especially and importantly, the solutions. Here are some of the key thoughts from Cardinal Sarah’s interview along with links for new readers to some of my writings that parallel and expand his observations:Continue reading

Lightening the Cross

 

The secret of happiness is docility to God and generosity to the needy…
—POPE BENEDICT XVI, Nov 2nd, 2005, Zenit

If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other…
—Saint Teresa of Calcutta

 

WE speak so much of how heavy our crosses are. But did you know that crosses can be light? Do you know what makes them lighter? It is love. The kind of love that Jesus spoke about:Continue reading

The Cross is Love

 

WHENEVER we see someone suffering, we often say “Oh, that person’s cross is heavy.” Or I might think that my own circumstances, be they unexpected sorrows, reversals, trials, breakdowns, health issues, etc. are my “cross to carry.” Moreover, we might seek out certain mortifications, fasts, and observances to add to our “cross.” While it is true that suffering is part of one’s cross, to reduce it to this is to miss what the Cross truly signifies: love. Continue reading

Loving Jesus

 

FRANKLY, I feel unworthy of writing on the present subject, as one who has loved the Lord so poorly. Everyday I set out to love Him, but by the time I enter an examination of conscience, I find that I have loved myself more. And the words of St. Paul become my own:Continue reading

Finding Jesus

 

WALKING along the Sea of Galilee one morning, I wondered how it was possible that Jesus was so rejected and even tortured and killed. I mean, here was One who not only loved, but was love itself: “for God is love.” [1]1 John 4:8 Every breath then, every word, every glance, every thought, every moment was imbued with Divine Love, so much so that hardened sinners would simply leave everything at once at the mere sound of his voice.Continue reading

   [ + ]

1. 1 John 4:8

The Crisis Behind the Crisis

 

To repent is to not just acknowledge that I have done wrong;
it is to turn my back on the wrong and start incarnating the Gospel.
On this hinges the future of Christianity in the world today.
The world does not believe what Christ taught
because we do not incarnate it. 
—Servant of God Catherine Doherty, from Kiss of Christ

 

THE Church’s greatest moral crisis continues to escalate in our times. This has resulted in “lay inquisitions” led by Catholic media, calls for sweeping reforms, an overhaul of alert systems, updated procedures, the excommunication of bishops, and so forth. But all of this fails to recognize the real root of the problem and why every “fix” proposed thus far, no matter how backed by righteous indignation and sound reason, fails to deal with the crisis within the crisis.Continue reading

Co-workers in Christ’s Vineyard

Mark Mallett by the Sea of Galilee

 

Now is above all the hour of the lay faithful,
who, by their specific vocation to shape the secular world in accordance with the Gospel,
are called to carry forward the Church’s prophetic mission
by evangelizing the various spheres of family,
social, professional and cultural life.

—POPE JOHN PAUL II, Address to the Bishops of the Ecclesiastical Provinces of Indianapolis, Chicago
and Milwaukee
on their “Ad Limina” visit, May 28th, 2004

 

I want to continue to reflect on the theme of evangelization as we move forward. But before I do, there is a practical message I need to repeat.Continue reading

A Gospel for All

The Sea of Galilee at Dawn (photo by Mark Mallett)

 

THERE are no words that can adequately describe what it’s like to walk in the literal footsteps of Jesus. It’s as though my trip to the Holy Land was entering into a mythical realm that I’d read about all my life… and then, suddenly, there I was. Except, Jesus is no myth. Continue reading