A Prayer Meditation on the Sacred Heart of Jesus

We have spent some time looking at the various wounds of the heart, wounds that can be extremely painful and destructive, and are in desperate need of tending and care. We have looked at how the Sacred Heart of Jesus offers the perfect remedy for these wounds, but it can still be difficult to approach healing beyond the intellectual understanding…

Wounds of the Heart, Part 3: Fear, Defensiveness, and Apathy

We continue our exploration of the wounds of the heart by focusing on fear, defensiveness, and apathy. These are enormous topics in general, so it helps to remember that we are just looking at these topics as wounds, rather than as psychological or even biological responses to a given situation. These three are related by the duration the wound is…

Wounds of the Heart, Part 2: Anger, Envy, and Confusion

We continue our exploration of the wounds of the heart by focusing on anger, envy, and confusion. Perhaps, these three do not seem like wounds at all, but more like defense mechanisms or appropriate responses to injustice. And, while that can be true, at least for anger and confusion, there are ways in which all three can wound the heart…

Wounds of the Heart: Part 1 – Guilt, Shame, and Sadness

Usually, June is an exciting month. School is ending, vacation season is gearing up, and northern states are beginning to enjoy the warmth of sunshine once again. This year, however, feels less exciting for obvious reasons. In the face of the pandemic, and now national protests and civil unrest, I’ve found myself more introspective and heavy-hearted with all of the…

3 Tips for Mission Trips

The first mission trip I ever led was an international trip with thirty young adults to a third-world country. We left our hometown at 1 a.m. and made it ...

Who Is the Holy Spirit and Why Should We Pray to Him?

During the Last Supper, Jesus says to the apostles: “But I tell you the truth, it is better for you that I go. For if I do not go, the Advocate will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you.” John 16:7 Imagine the confusion for the apostles when Jesus spoke these words. We…

The Technophobe’s Guide to Leading a Virtual Bible Study

Running an in-person Bible study or small group can be intimidating enough, never mind trying to conduct a group virtually. If you’re considering hosting a group, but have no idea where to start, this step-by-step guide is for you. For the technophobes out there—you know who you are—your first virtual Bible study group is only five steps away.  1. Measure…

What Is the Meaning of Life? (Hint: It’s Not 42)

I can’t help but think about the 2005 movie, The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, whenever ‘the meaning of life’ becomes the topic of conversation. Spoiler alert: a super-computer in that film discovers that the meaning of life is “42.” While I’m a fan of the movie for the slap-stick humor, I find its overall message to be rather depressing.…

Unfathomable Divine Mercy and the Doubting Thomas

It is hard to imagine how St. Thomas must have felt when the other apostles told him they had seen Jesus, risen and alive. His reply in John’s Gospel sheds some light on the anger and hurt filling his heart, as he stubbornly protests believing in Jesus’ resurrection until he could see and touch the wounds from the crucifixion. The…

The Vulnerability of God and Mary on Good Friday

During Lent, we spend a lot of time reflecting on how we can turn away from sin, attachments and distractions and give ourselves more to God. Reflecting on our weaknesses can make us feel insecure or vulnerable, or certainly timider before God in prayer. After committing the first—or original—sin, Adam and Eve express this fear and insecurity before God.  “But…

3 Saints’ Responses to Sickness and Disease

In every age of the Church, there are holy men and women who respond to the challenges, sufferings, illnesses, or injustices that plague the communities, countries, or the world. Saints are made through suffering. Jesus said: “whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross and follow me.” Matthew 16:24 Those who we call saints today…

Stations of the Cross: A Lenten Tradition of Love

There are certain Lenten practices that are so customary or traditional that without them Lent would not be Lent. This is the same for most holidays and celebrations—what is Christmas without a Christmas tree or Nativity scene, or a birthday with a cake, candles and singing? With Lent, Catholics are used to the announcements after Mass about Friday fish fries,…
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