On his apostolic journey to Santiago de Compostela, Pope-Emeritus Benedict XVI said, “To go on pilgrimage really means to step out of ourselves in order to encounter God where he has revealed himself, where his grace has shone with particular splendor and produced rich fruits of conversion and holiness among those who believe.” When making some sort of physical journey to a holy place, we live out, in a metaphorical way, what we live out every day of our lives: seeking to encounter God as He comes to us, and (hopefully) getting closer and closer to the Home of our Heavenly Father. This same idea was reiterated by both Pope St. John Paul II and Pope Francis. That being said, it wasn’t till spending a few days walking the Camino to Santiago that I really began to understand that our lives are basically one big pilgrimage. Continue reading “The Journey of LIFE”
A fellow priest once shared with me his “theory” that in “choosing” names for our children, there’s some mysterious way in which the saints “pick” us and thus join themselves to us. They make themselves our spiritual patrons; that is, one who, in their wealth, provides for the poverty of another. Whether this is entirely true remains to be seen, but I’m certainly willing to accept it as inside the bounds of the sharing of spiritual goods which takes place between the members of the Church on earth and the members of the Church in Heaven. Continue reading ““…show in us Your power to save.””
The last few weeks have provided some real opportunities to be in some very holy places (the Basilica of the Visitation, for example) in the footsteps of some very holy people such as St. Francis de Sales and St. Jane Frances de Chantel. What a treat it has been, and it really has become clear that the various places that we visit, especially where the saints have trod (in significant and not-so-significant ways), the Faith in these places takes on a certain flavor of the saints. For example, nearly every Church in Rome (it seems) has 3 required statues/images/side chapels: Our Lady and Sts. Peter and Paul. They are EVERYWHERE! In and around Assisi, it’s Sts. Francis and Clare. Siena (proudly) has St. Catherine and St. Bernadine of Siena. Venice has Sts. Mark, Lucy, and (allegedly) hundreds of others that they “saved” from the Muslims during the Crusades…that’s another story for another time. Annecy, France has St. Frances de Sales and St. Jane Frances de Chantel. There’s a real (authentic) pride about having the relics of the saints in “your” Church and/or in your home town, and they are (or at least can be) a real source of inspiration for the faithful, by means of their lives, their teachings, and their witness to Jesus Christ in the world. Continue reading “Your Will Be Done”
I’m sure everyone has things in their past of which they would be ashamed. When Frodo thinks that Sam has eaten the last of the lambis bread, and sends him home…when Harry and Ron part ways in Book VII (when Harry arguably needs him the most)…when I – sorry, I’m not going to tell you (it’s just easier to use fictional characters). You get the idea. Continue reading “Adore God Alone…”
To squelch any rumors or fears that might arise: no, I didn’t get arrested. The lack of posts in the past two weeks have not been due to any temporary incarcerations…school has FINALLY started (which some might argue to be a more permanent incarceration). In anticipation of the beginning of said school year, a couple of us took a trip to Siena, home town to – you guessed it – St. Catherine of Siena and St. Bernardine of Siena. Didn’t see that one coming, did you? Continue reading “Lines Might Have Been Crossed”
“The union of the wayfarers with the brethren who sleep in the peace of Christ is in no way interrupted, but on the contrary, according to the constant faith of the Church, this union is reinforced by an exchange of spiritual goods.” (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church Lumen Gentium, 49). It’s hard to be aware of the presence of so many saints in Rome and in Italy, and then think that they have no effect on our day-to-day life. Continue reading “FAITH WORKING THROUGH LOVE (Galatians5:6): One Crazy Weekend in Assisi!”
You show me a saint without holy friends, and I’ll find you a cause for canonization waiting to be opened! The beauty of yesterday’s “Tour di Roma” was the affirmation of a simple yet practical truth I’d run across way back in college: saints come in clusters.
There are many well-known treasures in the city of Rome, and then there are some which ought to be more well-known, yet are not. Yet, on second thought, perhaps it would be better if they were to remain unknown so as to remain a holy site and not a tourist trap.