Christian Prayer, or Mental Illness?

 

It’s one thing to talk to Jesus. It’s another thing when Jesus talks to you. That’s called mental illness, if I’m not correct, hearing voices… —Joyce Behar, The View; foxnews.com

 

THAT was television host Joyce Behar’s conclusion to the assertion by a former White House staffer that U.S. Vice President Mike Pence claims that “Jesus tells him to say things.” Continue reading

The Storm of Our Desires

Peace Be Still, by Arnold Friberg

 

FROM time to time, I receive letters like these:

Please pray for me. I am so weak and my sins of the flesh, especially alcohol, strangle me. 

You could simply replace alcohol with “pornography”, “lust”, “anger” or a number of other things. The fact is that many Christians today feel swamped by the desires of the flesh, and helpless to change.Continue reading

Finding True Peace in Our Times

 

Peace is not merely the absence of war…
Peace is “the tranquillity of order.”

Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 2304

 

EVEN now, even as time spins faster and faster and the pace of life demands more; even now as tensions between spouses and families increase; even now as cordial dialogue between individuals disintegrates and nations careen toward war… even now we can find true peace. Continue reading

Getting Ahead of God

 

FOR over three years, my wife and I have been trying to sell our farm. We’ve felt this “call” that we should move here, or move there. We’ve prayed about it and surmised that we had many valid reasons and even felt a certain “peace” about it. But still, we’ve never found a buyer (actually the buyers that have come along have been inexplicably blocked time and again) and the door of opportunity has repeatedly closed. At first, we were tempted to say, “God, why aren’t you blessing this?” But recently, we’ve realized that we’ve been asking the wrong question. It shouldn’t be, “God, please bless our discernment,” but rather, “God, what is Your will?” And then, we need to pray, listen, and above all, wait for both clarity and peace. We haven’t waited for both. And as my spiritual director has told me many times over the years, “If you don’t know what to do, don’t do anything.”Continue reading

The Cross of Loving

 

TO pick up one’s Cross means to empty oneself out completely for love of the other. Jesus put it another way:

This is my commandment: love one another as I love you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. (John 15:12-13)

We are to love as Jesus loved us. In His personal mission, which was a mission for the entire world, it involved death upon a cross. But how are we who are mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, priests and nuns, to love when we are not called to such a literal martyrdom? Jesus revealed this too, not only on Calvary, but each and every day as He walked among us. As St. Paul said, “He emptied himself, taking the form of a slave…” [1](Philippians 2:5-8 How?Continue reading

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1. (Philippians 2:5-8

The Cross, the Cross!

 

ONE of the greatest questions I’ve faced in my personal walk with God is why I seem to change so little? “Lord, I pray every day, say the Rosary, go to Mass, have regular confession, and pour myself out in this ministry. Why, then, do I seem stuck in the same old patterns and faults that hurt me and the ones I love the most?” The answer came to me so clearly:

The Cross, the Cross!

But what is “the Cross”?Continue reading

All In

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for October 26th, 2017
Thursday of the Twenty-Ninth Week in Ordinary Time

Liturgical texts here

 

IT seems to me that the world is moving faster and faster. Everything is like a whirlwind, spinning and whipping and tossing the soul about like a leaf in a hurricane. What is strange is to hear young people say they feel this too, that time is speeding up. Well, the worst danger in this present Storm is that we not only lose our peace, but let The Winds of Change blow out the flame of faith altogether. By this, I do not mean belief in God so much as one’s love and desire for Him. They are the engine and transmission that move the soul toward authentic joy. If we are not on fire for God, then where are we going?Continue reading

On How to Pray

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for October 11th, 2017
Wednesday of the Twenty-Seventh Week in Ordinary Time
Opt. Memorial POPE ST. JOHN XXIII

Liturgical texts here

 

BEFORE teaching the “Our Father”, Jesus says to the Apostles:

This is how you are to pray. (Matt 6:9)

Yes, how, not necessarily what. That is, Jesus was revealing not so much the content of what to pray, but the disposition of the heart; He was not giving a specific prayer so much as showing us how, as God’s children, to approach Him. For just a couple verses earlier, Jesus said, “In praying, do not babble like the pagans, who think that they will be heard because of their many words.” [1]Matt 6:7 Rather…Continue reading

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1. Matt 6:7