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Cardinal Seán O'Malley: Instrument of Peace

Image: Pope Francis greets Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley of Boston during a meeting with U.S. bishops at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle in Washington Sept. 23. (CNS photo/Paul Haring) Today he is one of Pope Francis’ closest advisers. He is considered to be the Church’s biggest authority on the protection of children, and is cardinal archbishop of the third largest archdiocese in the United States. But he never set out to be any of these things. 
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Jesus' Command: 'Rise, Precious One'

 
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Mother Teresa's Compassion and Mercy

Image: Mazur/catholicchurch.org.uk. Mass in Westminster Cathedral in honour of Mary Ward and the 400th Jubilee of the foundation of the Congregation of Jesus and the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Loreto Sisters). Most of us know the story’s basics: Mother Teresa, born Gonxha Agnes Bojaxhiu, grew up in what is now Macedonia and joined the Sisters of Loreto in Ireland when she was eighteen and prepared to become a missionary. She arrived in India about three months later and served as a schoolteacher until just before her 36th birthday when she heard what she termed a “call within a call” that two years later would result in the founding of the Missionaries of the Charity Sisters, an order ministering to the poorest of the poor, initially in the slums of Calcutta. Their work was humble, simple, one on one.
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5 Reasons Your Prayer Time Matters to the Church

We all know it is important to pray. Asked, we would certainly acknowledge that our prayer life is important. And we would likely assent to any addendum that reading Scripture should be key to any healthy personal prayer life. But far too often, when we sit on our own with our Bibles in our laps in the early morning light, or attempt to grab 15 minutes of quiet during nap time, it can seem we are praying in isolation.
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The Jewish Jesus

Make no mistake: Jesus was born Jewish. By the time that he was executed by the Romans, many Jewish people would have considered Jesus as guilty of blasphemy because of certain actions and his teachings about God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Many Christians are reluctant to admit that Christ was born, lived, and taught as a pious Jew of his time. They may feel that such an admission shows disloyalty to Our Lord. Some even believe that Christianity has replaced Judaism. Nothing could be further from the truth.
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My Lord, the Healer of Wounds

When his parents saw him, they were astonished, and his mother said to him, 'Son, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been looking for you with great anxiety.” And he said to them, 'Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?' But they did not understand what he said to them. He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them; and his mother kept all these things in her heart. And Jesus advanced [in] wisdom and age and favor before God and man”
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Saints in the Making

Image: Dick Vos. Occasionally, we will hear someone say, “She was a saint,” but we’re more likely to hear, “He was no saint,” or to say with a shrug, “I’m not a saint.” Our concept of saints is that they are extraordinary people who, for the most part, lived long ago and possessed special divine favors that the majority of us neither have nor comprehend. We admire and venerate them, but their alabaster perfection is beyond us. Becoming a saint is frightening because it seems to demand the impossible. Why would God demand from us what is not attainable? Or do we not understand what makes a person—a sinner like any of us—a saint? 
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The Father and His Prodigal Son

Image: The Return of the Prodigal Son, 1907. Mayer Stained Glass, CHS Cathedral. Each year, I’m privileged to visit the Holy Land to promote the nearly 800-year-old mission of the Franciscans there. With each visit, I discover something new. God is always at work, opening up new insights for any pilgrim who visits this ancient land.
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Mother Teresa's Journey of Grace

Image: Franciscan Friars of St. John the Baptist Province. Mother Teresa was born into a loving family. Her parents, Nicholas and Rosa, nurtured their children and the young Bojaxhiu family flourished. During the day, their devoted mother cared for the children while their father was at work. When evening approached, Rosa would rush about and prepare to greet Nicholas. No matter what had happened during the day, Rosa was always smiling when Nicholas returned home. Growing up in the midst of this joyful existence was a pleasure for Aga, Lazar, and Agnes.
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Mother Teresa: A Saint Who Conquered Darkness

One of Mother Teresa’s deepest fears after she founded the Missionaries of Charity was that she or one of her sisters and brothers would do or say something to cause scandal or detract from the Order’s mission. In all likelihood this explains, at least in part, her reluctance to speak publicly of the interior locutions she had experienced for seven or eight months after the call within a call came on the train to Darjeeling. 
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