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Entries related to: featured

The Beatitude Attitude

The Beatitudes. Doesn’t it just make you smile to say that out loud, to think of Jesus going up that mountain, sitting down, and then speaking those beautiful words? The challenge is that to Jesus and therefore to us, the Beatitudes are more than words. They are a way to follow him. They lay out an exceedingly difficult road map to live. Be meek? Me? Be a peacemaker? Me? Find something positive in mourning? Me? Yes, you. And all of us.
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Mary: A Portrait of Hope and Faith

        And Mary said, "Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word." —Luke 1:38
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Lent: Focusing Our Attention on God

How do we make the most out of Lent this year? Our guest blogger, Marcellino D’Ambrosio, author of 40 Days, 40 Ways: A New Look at Lent, offers suggestions.                            
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Meditation: Prayer of the Heart

Our guest blogger is Laurence Freeman, OSB, author of Sensing God: Learning to Meditate During Lent. Image: Bara Cross How best to move forward with meditation? The way of meditation I would recommend is in many ways universal, but also an integral part of the Christian tradition of prayer. In this tradition it is called the “prayer of the heart.” This distinguishes it from either mental prayer or the external forms of worship with which many Christians have come to identify prayer.
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Self-Giving Love

Our guest blogger today is Edward Sri, author of Men, Women, and the Mystery of Love: Practical Insights from John Paul II's Love and Responsibility. Image: freestocks.org One of the chief hallmarks of the objective aspect of love is the gift of self. John Paul II teaches that what makes betrothed (married) love different from all other forms of love such as attraction, desire, and friendship is that two people give themselves to each other. They are not just attracted to each other, and they do not simply desire what is good for each other. In betrothed love, each person surrenders himself entirely to the other. Yet the very idea of self-giving love raises some important questions: How can one person give himself to another? What does this mean? After all, each human person is utterly unique.
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A World of Illiteracy

Image: Micah Hallahan. What God writes in the skies, the oceans, the wind, and the rain provides a glimpse of his purpose for our lives, rooted in his incomparably generous love. Since we are made in his image, this love gives meaning to our lives, so it makes sense to be on the lookout for signs of his presence in the world around us. In fact, recent scientific discoveries point resolutely to the existence of our Creator, revealing all the structures of the universe’s intelligent design by a “someone” with a purpose and a plan.
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Why I'm Still Catholic

Image: Daniel Kainz. It was an honest question. After listening to me recount all my frustrations with the Catholic Church one night after dinner, my sister-in-law, who is not Catholic, asked me very honestly, “So then why do you stay?” The question stopped me in my tracks. At first I bristled a little at the question, feeling a bit defensive. But then it occurred to me that I really didn’t know how to answer her.
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What's New about the "New" Feminism?

Image: Tachina Lee. Recently, something called “The New Feminism” has been getting quite a bit of press, both in print and online. An expression coined by St. John Paul II in his encyclical Evangelium Vitae, the New Feminism is about helping women to live and express Gospel values more effectively in the Church and in the world, by recognizing their own authentic gifts and mission. It remains to be seen what new initiatives will arise from this more recent conversation, but as the mother of a teenage daughter, I am thrilled that our Holy Father, Pope Francis, has called for a more profound theology of women in the Church. His cry for progress recalls St. John Paul II’s Letter to All Women:
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Feast of the Holy Family

Image: Giorgio Vasari and Andrea del Sarto. A Word from Pope Francis The message that comes from the Holy Family is first of all a message of faith. In the family life of Mary and Joseph, God is truly at the center, and He is so in the Person of Jesus. This is why the Family of Nazareth is holy. Why? Because it is centered on Jesus. When parents and children together breathe in this climate of faith, they have an energy that allows them to face even difficult trials, as the experience of the Holy Family shows, for example, in the dramatic event of their flight to Egypt: a difficult ordeal.
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What is God Calling Us to Be?

Image: The Holy Children with a Shell (Infant Christ Offering a Drink of Water to St. John), Bartolomé Esteban Perez Murillo. Today’s Gospel reading (Lk 1:57-66) recounts the birth of Elizabeth’s child and the discussion surrounding his name. When Zechariah wrote on the tablet “John is his name” his mouth was opened and he was able to speak. These events instilled fear into the neighbors. All who heard of these things took these events to heart saying “What, then, will this child be?” Luke allows his readers to ponder the drama.
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