SEEK 2019 Taught Me How to Forgive

Merridith Frediani shares her experience involving her struggle to forgive someone, as well as the advice she received from Sr. Miriam James Heidland and Fr. John Burns at the SEEK 2019. She gives an account of her journey from being unforgiving to finding the grace to forgive and heal.

St. Mother Teresa and Spiritual Desolation

When I read Come Be My Light: The Private Writings of the Saint of Calcutta I had to stop right around chapter 8. I knew St. Mother Teresa had experienced a time of spiritual desolation but reading her own words about it was hard. I didn’t want to go there. I didn’t want to consider what that was like for…

Pray for Your Loved Ones (St. Monica’s Timeless Advice)

When I became a parent there were things I didn’t expect. I didn’t expect to become immune to barf. I didn’t expect to have a child with the trifecta of allergies, eczema, and asthma. I didn’t expect to be happy to sit in a field getting rained on while watching someone play soccer. But one big thing I did not…

Who Was St. Jane Frances de Chantal?

“What if God turned me away when I came back to him again and again?” This is the question a young Jane Frances de Chantal posed when she was asked why she let people sneak back into the line in front of her house where she was giving bread and soup to the poor. Yes! What if God turned us…

Mary Magadalene Showed Up, Stayed, and Trusted

She’s called the Apostle to the Apostles. She was the first to encounter the resurrected Jesus and tasked by him to tell the others. She’s wrongly referred to as a reformed prostitute and more heretically the secret wife of Jesus. We know little about her yet everyone knows her name. She is both mysterious and fascinating.  My daughter summed her up…

St. Maria Goretti Teaches Us to Forgive When It’s Hardest

It was a few years ago when St. Maria Goretti’s remains came through town. I regret that I did not make the effort to visit them. It was early in my faith reversion and I had not yet come to appreciate the role saints play in our lives. What I remember most is hearing her story.  Maria Goretti was born…

St. Josemaría Escrivá and Ordinary Life Sanctification

Our children have formed a loosely organized Put Upon Club. This club has no officers but has three affiliate members who like to remind us of their membership when we ask them to do a second or (gasp) third job in one day. Somewhere along this journey as a family, they erroneously determined that they should only have to perform…

The Names for Mary in the Litany of Loreto

May is a fickle month, at least here in Wisconsin where the wind can shift and the temperature can drop twenty degrees in five minutes. It’s a month I both love and hate. Sitting on my floor next to me are tuberous begonias, zinnias, and lantana plants that are waiting to be potted and placed outside. When I bought them…

Catholic Devotion Today: It’s Not All Bad News

There is a lot of bad news right now. A virus is sweeping the world, the economy is tanking, and we are mysteriously worried about toilet paper. Reports about people and faith are dismal. Even before churches closed as a response to the pandemic, church attendance was down. The outlook is not brilliant. One couldn’t be faulted for wondering if…

How Priests Are Shepherding during a Pandemic

The skies are quiet. I noticed it earlier this week when we had a succession of friendly spring days. The wind shifted and was coming from the south. Living nine miles north of the airport, spring and summer are when my house is on the landing flight path. I notice the increase of lowish flying airplanes overhead and by early…

The Joy of the Easter Season

How does one write about the joy of the Easter season in the midst of a pandemic? That was the question rattling around my mind for the past few weeks. I don’t want to be a PollyAnna with my head in the sand pretending everything is OK. Everything is not OK. There is real suffering. But I also don’t want…

How to Combat Worry with Trust in Jesus

I’m in a flock of scattered sheep. This virus has separated and isolated us from normality. I keep hearing “This is the new normal.” Our lives are upended. I find myself missing that which used to be an obligation, things like rising at 5:30 am to go to work. Despite loving my job, I found myself desiring one more day…
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