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Tag: self examination

How Much Manna Are You Gathering?

December 9, AD2017 1 Comment
How Much Manna Are You Gathering?

For those who are new to the Catholic Church, as well as those who’ve been a part for decades, there are many mysteries of our faith we are unable to understand. This is especially true for me. I am currently going through RCIA classes for the third time. I decided the Church wasn’t for me […]

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Monica’s Miseries and Fortitude’s Strength

December 3, AD2017 0 Comments
Monica’s Miseries and Fortitude’s Strength

These days we hear a lot about “snowflakes.” These are young adults who must be protected from the least slight, whether real or imagined. Fortitude is the virtue that opposes this weakness. In one word, fortitude is strength. But of what kind? Fortitude has two sides: courage and toughness. Courage is the strength that one […]

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Imitate John the Baptist – Friend of the Bridegroom

November 3, AD2017 0 Comments
Imitate John the Baptist – Friend of the Bridegroom

When John the Baptist’s disciples are disturbed that Jesus’ disciples are baptizing people and Christ is increasing in importance, they come to their master to complain. John then reveals his role in salvation history. “He who has the bride is the bridegroom. The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at […]

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What Happens When We Don’t Pray?

October 22, AD2017 2 Comments
What Happens When We Don’t Pray?

“In prayer you become one with the source of our true light – Jesus Himself.” Pope Saint John Paul II I never had much of an intentional prayer life outside of the rosary until this year, when I discovered Ignatian spirituality and contemplative prayer. This form of imaginative prayer has been a rich experience for […]

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Striving to Live Worthy of His Call

October 6, AD2017 0 Comments
Striving to Live Worthy of His Call

In today’s culture getting married young may not be frowned upon, but it certainly isn’t very common. Recently, my fiancé and I, both in our early 20s, went on our engagement weekend, which was part of our marriage prep through the Church. There must have been 20-30 couples there, and I am almost positive we […]

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Clutching at Relevance and Grasping at Control: Willful Submission to the Information Overlord

September 28, AD2017 7 Comments
Clutching at Relevance and Grasping at Control:  Willful Submission to the Information Overlord

Contrary to what I know to be the right thing to do, I have a stubborn tendency to dwell too much in the world, being drawn into different media under the false pretense of, “staying informed.” However the more I read and watch, the less peace I have. The more supposed “knowledge” I gain, the […]

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Accepting God’s Blessings in Your Life

September 18, AD2017 0 Comments
Accepting God’s Blessings in Your Life

I’ve had an extraordinarily good year. By any rational standard, every year of my life has been good, but this year in particular I have experienced a measure of personal and professional success that has been, to say the least, deeply gratifying. I took this matter to God in prayer because I realized I was […]

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“It’s Hard to be Humble”

September 17, AD2017 2 Comments
“It’s Hard to be Humble”

In 1975, singer Mac Davis released a song entitled “It’s Hard to be Humble”.  The lyrics of this tongue-in-cheek song brought crowds to laughter, yet, they certainly struck uncomfortably close to home.  The crowds would merrily sing along as Davis crooned: “Oh, Lord it’s hard to be humble, when you’re perfect in every way/ I can’t […]

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A Day of Peace Would Be a Wondrous Thing

August 28, AD2017 0 Comments
A Day of Peace Would Be a Wondrous Thing

It’s been said that on December 25, 1914, during the First World War, an “unofficial ceasefire” occurred. On that day, German and British soldiers put aside their differences, and for one day, one of the most reverent of days, peace ensued. Perhaps you’ve heard the account of the “Christmas Truce.” The story is a remarkable […]

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Recognizing Neighbor in Today’s World

July 14, AD2017 0 Comments
Recognizing Neighbor in Today’s World

In the book of Luke, an expert in the law asks, “Who is my neighbor?” Jesus responds with the parable of the Good Samaritan. His examples guide us through several encounters with an injured man – all with diverse responses.  Jesus then turns to the lawyer  and asks: Which of these three, in thy opin […]

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Wanting Purgatory Now – A Journey Towards Holiness

July 10, AD2017 5 Comments
Wanting Purgatory Now – A Journey Towards Holiness

There are a number of things that distinguish Catholics from Protestant Christians.  One of these things is a belief in purgatory. Protestants think that simply accepting Jesus Christ as their savior (Solus Christus, Sola fide) guarantees that they will go to straight to heaven. Catholic Doctrine, however, says there are no guarantees. Purgatory might best be described […]

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The Fifth Beatitude: Mercy

July 1, AD2017 0 Comments
The Fifth Beatitude: Mercy

Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy. For the past five months I’ve been writing about the Beatitudes in order to understand them better. We can hear something hundreds of times without its meaning ever sinking in or becoming knowledge. For a long time the Beatitudes seemed like white noise to me. But […]

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The Deadly Cancer of Anger

June 14, AD2017 5 Comments
The Deadly Cancer of Anger

“This deadly cancer of anger… makes us unlike ourselves, makes us like timber wolves or furies from Hell, drives us forth headlong upon the points of swords, makes us blindly run forth after other men’s destruction as we hasten toward our own ruin.” This quote by St. Thomas More goes a long way to explain […]

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Your True North

June 6, AD2017 1 Comment
Your True North

  Many today are getting lost amongst the busy consumer culture, bogged down with appearing successful and fitting in with those around them. This culture tells us that the newest and fanciest cars will make us happy. It tells us that having a multimillion-dollar home will finally bring us that satisfaction that we have been […]

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Making God Your Goal

May 2, AD2017 2 Comments
Making God Your Goal

In an effort to maintain their lifestyles, some people repeatedly push themselves to the point of exhaustion. But a life that does not have God as the goal is a life that is not well spent. Take, for example, the college student who works relentlessly in pursuit of a career with a handsome salary, respect, […]

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Grabbing the Lion of Judah’s Tail

April 16, AD2017 1 Comment
Grabbing the Lion of Judah’s Tail

As we approach Holy Week, Lent has steadily moved us to the edges of ourselves.  Yet, we can miss one of the most important elements of the Christian life if we overlook an element of Jesus’ identity that comes into particular focus as we enter Holy Week.   We focus a great deal on the […]

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A Faith Adventure: Evangelizing a Family Member

April 9, AD2017 8 Comments
A Faith Adventure: Evangelizing a Family Member

I recently had a conversation about our faith with a fallen-away Catholic family member. This situation is exactly what the New Evangelization is all about. According to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops: “In a special way, the New Evangelization is focused on ‘re-proposing’ the Gospel to those who have experienced a crisis of […]

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Man Puts a Question Mark Where God Put a Period

March 26, AD2017 3 Comments
Man Puts a Question Mark Where God Put a Period

There are many folk idioms or simply popular observations which would appear to be wrong at any number of levels.  One that comes to mind is “Half of the people you meet each day are below average.”  Clearly, that depends on the number of people you meet per day and where you meet them.  For […]

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Gratitude is a Prayer

March 18, AD2017 1 Comment
Gratitude is a Prayer

While recently considering the many types of prayer we can use when talking to God, I recalled a conversation I had last fall with a priest. The topic was envy, and my desire to avoid it. In response, this priest recommended I pray a decade of the rosary and, before each bead, think of something […]

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My Three Me’s

March 11, AD2017 1 Comment
My Three Me’s

Heading south from Orlando to Yeehaw Junction, the Florida Turnpike traverses a vast stretch of real estate inhabited almost exclusively by alligators, herons, snakes, and fish.  It’s a lengthy forty-seven miles across the swamp without a single exit.  Last Thursday, traveling to south Florida to speak at a men’s conference, I found myself stuck in […]

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Omission: Sinning by Not Acting–We Need to Avoid Avoiding

March 9, AD2017 2 Comments
Omission: Sinning by Not Acting–We Need to Avoid Avoiding

The Rich Man and Lazarus Pope Francis, in his 2017 Lenten Message, speaks of the Parable of The Rich Man and Lazarus. The rich man had it made in this life, while Lazarus struggled terribly, lying at the door of the rich man’s house, starving and deathly ill. Yet the rich man didn’t even notice […]

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I’m a Mystic (And So Are You)

February 19, AD2017 0 Comments
I’m a Mystic (And So Are You)

Earlier this month I participated in my first ever retreat, called “The Retreat in Daily Life.” It was a week-long retreat which took place in tandem with my work day; 30 minutes of prayer on my own in the morning, complemented by 30 minutes of scheduled discussion with a spiritual guide in the afternoon at […]

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Simple Ignatius

January 12, AD2017 3 Comments
Simple Ignatius

Since my first encounter with Ignatian Spirituality years ago, I have spent a lot time both intrigued and mystified by it.  As is often the case with Catholic prayers, much of the material explaining these spiritual exercises retain the language originally used by Ignatius.  While this may be appreciated by those who already understand Ignatius […]

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The Amazing Advent(ure)

December 13, AD2016 0 Comments
The Amazing Advent(ure)

We all have our own thoughts about the season preceding Christmas.  Some of these thoughts might be grounded in solid theological understanding, after all, it is the beginning of the Church year.  Others might be more pedestrian than that, since Advent inhabits the same calendar space as the Christmas shopping season.  Our own sentimental reflections […]

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