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Saint Francis of Assisi: Peacemaker

Being a peacemaker can be thankless—even dangerous. That’s why people still admire Saint Francis of Assisi and his legacy. He embraced “the other.” In their faces, he saw the face of Christ. How can we model that kind of behavior? Murray Bodo, OFM, gives us an answer in this week’s video. 
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We Are in the Hands of God

We know that God is a pure and infinite spirit. But Scripture also attributes human characteristics to him. In his wisdom, God wanted to be real for his children. He wanted to be someone we could hold on to. In God’s own words to us, he has described himself in physical images. For example, Jesus described the Father like a “hen who gathers her chicks safely under her wing” (Lk 13:34). It seems significant, too, that there are 122 references to the hands of God. 
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Finding God in the Darkness of Depression

I have a passionate devotion to Divine Mercy. I sing the Chaplet and pray this prayer of surrender, “Jesus, help the signature of my life be the signature of your Divine Mercy, ‘Jesus, I trust in you.’ ” And I strive to live that surrender minute by minute. But as I fell deeper and deeper into the dark hole of depression a couple of years ago, the prayer began to sit on my heart like a heavy weight. It made it hard for me to breathe.
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What Does It Mean to Live Simply?

“A key part of being a Franciscan,” Fr. Richard Goodin, OFM, says, “is a care for creation and finding ways of being in just relationship with what God has created.” The friars also have an obligation to live simply. But how? Fr. Richard expands on this idea in this week’s video.
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Talking to God: Morning Prayers

Throughout the day, we should be mindful that God wishes to continually hear from us. But how can we possibly speak to Him every minute when we are obviously busy?
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The Bullet: A Story of Gun Violence and American Industry

In this excerpt from Eight Whopping Lies and Other Stories of Bruised Grace, author Brian Doyle explores the provenance of a single bullet used to injure an American soldier.
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Do Animals Go to Heaven?

From time to time, I am posed with an interesting theological question: Do animals go to heaven? We’ve heard people with great sincerity say, “If my dear pet can’t be with me, then I can’t be there.” That sounds extreme, but we shouldn't criticize such strong emotions. Any of my readers who have owned pets will know this feeling well. 
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Stewardship of Creation: An Earth Day Message

  “Nature is at our disposition and we are called to exercise a responsible stewardship over it,” Pope Francis said in 2014 at the World Day of Peace. “Yet so often we are driven by greed and by the arrogance of dominion, possession, manipulation and exploitation; we do not preserve nature; nor do we respect it or consider it a gracious gift which we must care for and set at the service of our brothers and sisters, including future generations.”
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The Peace Prayer of Saint Francis

Though written in simple language, Saint Francis' Peace Prayer provides rich material for spiritual reflection. The following are some of my thoughts on the Peace Prayer inspired by the lines of this prayer and by the example of Francis.
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Seeking God with Sister Rose: Angels I Have Met

Have you ever met an angel—or at least thought you had? I would like to share with you two encounters.
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