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Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween


Today is important because it is the eve of All Saint' Day. It is also one of the favorite days for children as it comes at a special moment when there are no other fun days and children love the idea of dressing up and having a party or going out for tricks and treats. I remember the best time I enjoyed a costume party was when four of us decided to be the "Dead End Kids" when I was in about the fifth grade (my memory is fussy on this but we must have seen the movie and decided to go to the party at school dressed as these kids with old blue jeans and patches sewed on our shirts). I think I was a tomboy anyway, but this was a really comfortable costume that made me feel free to be myself. It is funny what we remember. When I was in seventh grade, my mother went all out to give me a great Halloween party for my classmates. I think she enjoyed planning it, too, but it was such fun and one of the best parties given when I was in grade school.

Well, let us use this eve of All Saints to remember all who have gone before us and who are still watching over us from Heaven. I need to begin today to recall the huge number of saints that I have known plus many of my favorite canonized saints!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Peace sought for the world by Pope Benedict XVI


I do not know if you have been following the Pope's journey to Assisi these past days; I have not really seen our newspapers covering it, but here is an excerpt from Benedict XVI's talk there that is good for us to reflect on today. Peace is so important in our world.

"As a Christian I want to say at this point: yes, it is true, in the course of history, force has also been used in the name of the Christian faith. We acknowledge it with great shame. But it is utterly clear that this was an abuse of the Christian faith, one that evidently contradicts its true nature. The God in whom we Christians believe is the Creator and Father of all, and from him all people are brothers and sisters and form one single family. For us the Cross of Christ is the sign of the God who put “suffering-with” (compassion) and “loving-with” in place of force. His name is “God of love and peace” (2 Cor 13:11). It is the task of all who bear responsibility for the Christian faith to purify the religion of Christians again and again from its very heart, so that it truly serves as an instrument of God’s peace in the world, despite the fallibility of humans.

If one basic type of violence today is religiously motivated and thus confronts religions with the question as to their true nature and obliges all of us to undergo purification, a second complex type of violence is motivated in precisely the opposite way: as a result of God’s absence, his denial and the loss of humanity which goes hand in hand with it. The enemies of religion – as we said earlier – see in religion one of the principal sources of violence in the history of humanity and thus they demand that it disappear. But the denial of God has led to much cruelty and to a degree of violence that knows no bounds, which only becomes possible when man no longer recognizes any criterion or any judge above himself, now having only himself to take as a criterion. The horrors of the concentration camps reveal with utter clarity the consequences of God’s absence."

"It is the task of all who bear responsibility for the Christian faith to purify the religion of Christians again and again from its very heart, so that it truly serves as an instrument of God’s peace in the world, despite the fallibility of humans."
How am I helping to do this?

Yesterday, as I walked into Church I saw one of my favorite priests, a Franciscan, who used to say the Saturday evening Mass until he was recalled by his province to New York. I was so happy to see him and hear that he is staying for a few months on sabbatical. I am sure others are as happy as I am as he is such a simple, holy, humble priest and radiates goodness, joy and love. It did me good just to see him. I am grateful, too, to have him back and hope his Provincial knows how much he is appreciated here!

Have a Happy Hallowmeen tomorrow!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Canadian beauty


The Canadian Province of the Society of the Sacred Heart has asked not to be a Province as they are fewer now, but still doing a great work in their beautiful country. I am thinking of all we have to thank for in that country - we are close because the Canadian novices were formed with us at Kenwood. I guess I am thinking of gratitude because I am reading "The Grateful Heart" and the authors insist that we need to establish regular practices of gratitude to develop an attitude of gratefulness. I guess the Ignatian daily examen is one way to look back over the day and thank God for all the gifts and blessings received. I am most struck these days by realizing that it is in Him we live and move and have our being. God is with us in everything and everything is gift. Someone said that gratitude is the echo of grace.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Our Lady of the Snows


Since I spent last week end at the shrine of Our Lady of the Snows, it seems fitting that I talk a bit about the devotion to her which was first introduced to the Midwest in 1941 by the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. This was mostly through th work of the :Flying Priest of the Arctic", Father Paul Schulte, O.M.I. and the founder of the National Shrine, Father Edwin Guild, O.M.I. but the devotion is much older.

There is a legend about a marvelous snowfall in Rome in 352 A.D. It seems that Mary had indicated in a dream to a Roman couple that she wanted a church built in her honor and the site for the church would be covered with snow. On a hot, sultry day, August 5, the Esquiline Hill was covered with snow. Everyone proclaimed this summer snow a miracle. The great basilica of St. Mary Major was built on the site.
The Oblates of Mary Immaculate have honored Mary in Belleville, Illinois, as Our Lady of the Snows. They are her missionaries and see her special role in the Church as the first missionary who carried Jesus to others.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Looking ahead to Sunday's Gospel


I like to click on the Concord Pastor's blog (found on the right hand side of my blog)and then click on the Bible to read some of the commentaries for next Sunday's Gospel. Today I am quoting from one of my favorite commentators, John Kavanaugh, S. J. of Saint Louis University - do go read the entire commentary as I have just quoted the last part:

"You, dear reader, need not bear the burden of my gospel literal-mindedness or my scruples, but it is noteworthy that Jesus makes such a big deal out of the whole thing.

Clearly he is talking about the danger of putting anyone in the place of God. Surely he is warning us against the tendency to set up a guru or a master as a solution for life’s travails. And there is no doubt that Jesus is reminding all of us that we should not pose as the savior or master of anybody.

Only God is God. As St. Paul reminds the Thessalonians, our message, our word, and our teaching are God’s, who works through and in us all. It is so tempting to make oneself the message and the teaching—especially if you have an honorific title.

If we wish honor or pre-eminence, let it be in service, rather than in being served. If we aspire to be Number One, let us be the first to forgive, to heal, to minister. We can’t escape the message. Jesus is getting at something here.

We are brothers and sisters. That’s that. In this matter of grace and salvation, there is no one of us above the other, even though some of us, by the grace of God, are asked to read the book, preach the word, offer the consecration, or pray the absolution.

Our ministry, like St. Paul’s, must be one of gentle encouragement, “as a mother,” he says, sharing the Good News and graces of our lives. This may not make us look very imposing. But it will make us, with Paul, more grateful."

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Gratitude


As I am reading The Grateful Heart by Wilkie and Noreen Au, I am going to share some of my thoughts this morning about the four facets they give of a grateful disposition. First comes intensity which really means that I need to take time to feel intensely my gratitude. I can increase my feeling of gratitude by savoring with more appreciation the people and events that make me feel grateful.
2.Frequency: I need to really be aware of the gifts and blessings in my life and that means stopping to reflect on them and "count my blessings". By consciously thanking for the many gifts of each day, I increase my disposition towards gratitude.
3. Span: This is not taking things for granted but including all the daily events, people, experiences, in my gratitude. We often take things for granted as we enjoy them everyday - that includes our senses, our freedom, our meals, our home, etc.
4. Density: This includes being grateful for all that goes into whatever success or achievement I have; think of the people who have helped me to be who I am today as well as the unique experiences I have had to bring me to this point and thank for all who have contributed to my gratitude today.

I just think that by being grateful we will be pleasing Jesus who is aware of all the gifts that God has given each one of us. He cured ten lepers but only one returned to give thanks!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Wonderful Week


I had a really wonderful week and then the Province week end at Our Lady of the Snows so I will share some of the highlights which gave me great joy. The day I arrived I was met by one of my favorite RSCJs who promptly offered me her ticket for the symphony that night. I went and enjoyed every minute. The next morning I went with another RSCJ friend (also a visitor that Saturday) to St. Charles for a morning of silent prayer both in the Shrine and in the room where Philippine lived for the last ten years of her life. The morning flew by and then we went to lunch in St. Charles. We had a welcome prayer and dinner that night for another RSCJ who has returned after thirty years as a missionary in Africa. On Sunday morning we went to the College Church for Mass and then I had a visit and lunch with my provincial which made me very grateful and then I went to visit one of my RSCJ friends and back to watch the Cardinals play (that, of course, became a big part of the visit). On Monday, I began work at the Archives but went to Mass at the Cathedral and then had a visit with one of my friends from early childhood; on Tuesday, after a day at the Archives, I went out with another friend to visit with her husband who is in a nursing home and then to dinner. It was so good seeing her as we have been friends for 69 years!!
Wednesday I made my famous chicken vegetable soup for the community where I stay in St. Louis. The secret is to use French onion soup with chicken broth as the base and throw in every kind of vegetable that is available plus a can of diced stewed-tomatoes and cut up lots of celery and carrots, too. Then, Thursday was Mater's Feast so I went to the Mass at our school, Villa Duchesne, and then to the archives. On Friday, my sister-in-law was in town to celebrate her mother's 87th birthday so they picked me up and we went to lunch at Steak and Shake and then I went home to finish packing and drive with others to Our Lady of the Snows in Belleville. There were twenty-four Religious of the Sacred Heart making this dialog week end which is being held in five different places on different dates so over 150 of us will have had the opportunity to be together and share and pray as it is also a contemplative type of week end with beautiful prayer together, sharing in small groups, meals together, time for personal prayer and reflection and time to just enjoy one another. We ended with a box lunch on Sunday and then off to the airport for some of us and others drove or even took a train. It was just good to be together and made me so grateful to be an RSCJ! Well, now I am trying to get through about three hundred e-mails that I let pile up and now need to read, answer or just delete. I suspect this will take me a couple of days.
Not much of a spiritual reflection today, but I thought you would enjoy an account of my week away. Here is a quote though that I took from a new book I have just begun to read. The book is "The Grateful Heart: Living the Christian Message" by Wilkie Au and Noreen Cannon Au. (Paulist Press, 2011). Positive psychologists have found that happiness is closely associated "with a core set of personal character traits that they labeled "heart strengths': gratitude, hope, zest, and the ability to love and to be loved."

Monday, October 24, 2011

Home again and happy to be back on the blog


Since I was not here for Mater's feast last Thursday, I thought you might like to have a litany that was composed for Mater and sent to me on her feast. I went to the celebration of Mater with a beautiful Liturgy at our school, Villa Duchesne in St. Louis with pink-icing on the cookies passed out as we emerged from the Chapel. Later, at our national Society of the Sacred Heart archives, I enjoyed a cupcake with pink icing; we do have some traditions that last and I was happy to see so many pink shirts, sweaters, hair ribbons, and scarfs during the day. More about my wonderful week away tomorrow.

Litany of Mater Admirabilis

Mother most Admirable,
Pray for us.

Mother most Admirable, Lily of the Valley, and Flower of the Field,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, whose image shows forth the beauty of purity,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you make all things easy for us,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, to look upon you lifts us above the things of earth,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you teach us to love Jesus,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you break the bonds of the most hardened sinners,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you teach us to despise the pleasures and honors of the world.
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you reveal to your children the secrets of the Tabernacle,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, purer than the whitest Lily,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, balm for every wound,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you hold the secret of perfect serenity,
Pray for us.

Mother most Admirable, Model of true Greatness,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, at whose feet we would remain forever,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, none can approach you without becoming holier,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, best of comforters,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, lowly as the hidden violet,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you fill our hearts with happiness,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you give us a foretaste of Heaven,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you give courage for the greatest sacrifices,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, delight of Heaven and earth,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, the very thought of you brings peace to the heart,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you speak to all the words of Life,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, to look upon you is to find peace,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, Mother of the interior life,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you revive our failing courage
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, your gentle modesty equals your high dignity,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, you have long ago revealed how dear this title is to you,
Pray for us.
Mother most Admirable, none have never invoked you in vain,
Pray for us.
AMEN


Commentary on the Litany of Mater Admirabilis

By the Society of the Sacred Heart

Translated from the French

Rome, Mother House 1960

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Feast of Mater, October 20


Since I am away, I am posting this early to remind you of this feast.
Today is the Feast of Mater, dear to all Sacred Heart children, old pupils, and many others who have confided in Our Lady under this title of Mother most Admirable. Here is one of my favorite prayers:
Under the pressure of over-activity which at times consumes us,
disturbs us, or scatters our energies in doing what is visible and accidental
let us come to our Mater.

She is the Mother of the Invisible and the Mother of the Essential.
Let us ask her to detach us, to free us from all that is not important,
to lead us on, and to fix our gaze upon the Invisible which her own eyes look upon.

May she give us the right understanding of the Essential and a hunger for it.
One thing alone is necessary: the will of God and the work of God's love.
May Mater give us this singleness of vision so that we, too, may see the Invisible and the Essential in all. Amen.

May Mater help us to prepare for her feast!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Julian of Norwich


The last new book that I am going to talk about is Amy Frykholm's Julian of Norwich: A Contemplative Biography. Paraclete Press, 2010. I bought the book because I love Julian of Norwich. I have not yet read it, but look forward to doing so. I visited Norwich and the tiny cell attached to the Church that was rebuilt after the war. I found the Cathedral, more than a fairly recent church, more filled with the spirit of Julian, but I did enjoy my visit and now I feel that I will enjoy reading a contemplative biography of her. I have studied her visions which she wrote and remember that this was the first book in the English language written by a woman.
Now, I shall try to remember to say more about the book when I have had a chance to read it. I do read a great deal, but only spend a little time each day on spiritual reading. I think that I have given all my readers many suggestions to keep you all busy. I will be away so will not be writing probably until October 25. In the meantime, do not forget to look at the blog of the Concord Pastor and click on the Bible to have great commentaries for the Sunday readings...also check out some of the other online sources I list for prayer. Then I feel I can go away and know that I leave you with good sources. So, until October 25 - and, to quote Julian, "all will be well, and all will be well,..."

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Now…let us live in grateful remembrance and full of hope that even the best things that are behind us have no proportion with what is still before us, since God will always be better to us than God has been yet, and in all the vicissitudes of life we shall always know God better and have to lean more upon God.

[Janet Erskine Stuart, RSCJ, from Maud Monahan, Life and Letters of Janet Erskine Stuart]

Monday, October 10, 2011

Between Heaven and Mirth


James Martin, S.J. has a new book: Between Heaven and Mirth: Why Joy, Humor, and Laughter Are at the Heart of the Spiritual Life. (HarperOne, 2011).
It is advertised and reviewed in this week's America and so I ordered it and it was downloaded to my Kindle in less than 40 seconds. I am so grateful for the gift of the Kindle as most books are much cheaper, but I think I really prefer to be able to have a spiritual book in my hand and mark it up as I go along. I can, of course, highlight passages of books on Kindle and make notes, but I mostly use for Kindle for light reading and games. This book is one that I wanted to read at once and pass on the good news to you for this is a book to give joy. I have become a fan of James Martin as he entertains as well as nourishes us in all his writings.
Now, I need to start adding all the books I have been reviewing to my list on the right. I know I still have a few to add and ordered a couple of more this week so I will complete the list for you before I take off on October 14 for St. Louis where I will work in our national archives, see friends, and attend a province week end for dialog with other Religious of the Sacred Heart. While I am away I will not be writing but I am giving you enough suggestions for good spiritual reading to keep you busy. I have not, as I told you from the beginning, read all of these books, but I have dipped into each one and find each worth reading or I would not list it on the right side of my blog!!Normally, I never list a book that I have not read, but this time I feel that I have read enough to know that these are good books for anyone to read. Some of them are outstandingly good!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

We are all invited...


God invites us all to the banquet. Am I like those in the parable Jesus told today who do not heed his invitation? When pressed, they give excuses. I wonder what the real reason is for refusing the invitation. I think I am one who has rejected the invitation often in the past and continue to do so for silly reasons. I think I am busy, but probably I am just lazy or too preoccupied with my own concerns to even remember that I am invited to this great banquet.
Then the King invites everyone. And God keeps inviting us. "If today You hear his voice, harden not your hearts."
The following is an excerpt of an article by Patricia Sanchez sent by NCR; itis a good reflection on today's Gospel:

"Perhaps one way of answering this question is to consider how we respond to God’s many invitations in our lives. Some of those are standing invitations that invite us to gather regularly for liturgy. These weekly or even daily invitations can become so routine that we might not be fully present at the banquet of word and bread and fellowship. At the end of a liturgical celebration, one pastor in a small rural parish in the South proclaimed to his congregation, “Go forth in peace; this has been the highlight of our day; it is all downhill from here.” This colloquial way of affirming the eucharistic banquet as the source and summit of our lives remained with his parishioners, who struggled to value all else in their lives as secondary to -- and dependent upon -- that time of sacred sharing.

God’s invitations reveal themselves in other ways as well. Through the persons who reach out to us in their need, God invites us to share. Through those who suffer injustice, God invites our advocacy and responsible participation at the ballot box. Through those who have no one to speak for them, no one to uphold their rights to live and work without fear, God invites our persistent involvement on their behalf.

In the beauties of nature, God invites our awe and admiration; in the calamities of nature, God invites our trust. In the warmth of friendship and familial harmony, God invites our gratitude; in the pain and turmoil of strained relationships, God invites our perseverance. In the vigor of our youth and good health, God invites our grateful service; in the pain of sickness and the struggles of old age, God invites our endurance and calm. In all our fears, in all our frustrations, in all our sadness, desires, accomplishments and joys, God is inviting us to be at peace and center upon the One who is to be our ultimate concern."

[Patricia S├ínchez holds a master’s degree in literature and religion of the Bible from a joint degree program at Columbia University and Union Theological Seminary in New York.]

Book reviews will continue tomorrow.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Busy today adding books to the list on the right side of my blog


It is pouring rain here and yet this picture just popped up and makes me think that summer is over although we still have hot weather that allows us to enjoy the water. I am sorry it is raining today, but good to stay home and catch up on letters and odd jobs.
I am not reviewing a book today, but have talked about Louis Savary's The New Spiritual Exercises in the Spirit of Teilhard de Chardin before in earlier blogs; we are using it in our Reflection Group and I think it is a book that all my friends should have. It is really transforming but is a retreat in daily life and is to be prayed rather than just read. The basic principles of Chardin are listed and worth the price of the book just to have Chardin's thought so clearly expressed and then applied throughout the book.

We are responsible for our planet!


God has given us such a wonderful universe and we live in a world that contains beauty wherever we go, especially when we contemplate nature. I am always amazed at the gorgeous tracts of land we have in all our country that are still without homes and so keep their natural beauty. Well, the image above made me start thinking of the books that I have been reading and how all insist on our helping the evolution of the world; actually, we have God with us, but God created us to bring unity to all.

My book for today is by the Indian Jesuit, Paul Coutinho: An Ignatian Pathway: Experiencing the Mystical Dimensions of the Spiritual Exercises. (Loyola, 2011) This is an interesting little book with over 100 one-page reflections on some aspect of Ignatian Spirituality, usually on a phrase taken from the Spiritual Exercises. The book could be used as a resource for anyone wanting to deepen the graces of the Spiritual Exercises and especially for one who is looking for an experience of God. I like the short excerpts and love the one-liners in italics at the bottom of each page. Here are a couple of examples:
Ignatius converts the energy of doing into the celebration of being.

We become what we contemplate.

The source of our happiness and the meaning of our lives come from our relationship with God.

The good news is that God loves us totally and unconditionally--just as we are.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Our One Great Act of Fidelity


Ronald Rolheiser's latest book, Our One Great Act of Fidelity
was one I read during my retreat. It is an easy book to read and gives many ways for us to look at the Eucharist and increase our appreciation and desire for Eucharist; it is really a book that motivated me to participate daily and with renewed love and attention.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

"The Emergent Christ"


The Emergent Christ: Exploring the Meaning of Catholic in an Evolutionary Universe
by Ilia Delio is a deep, fascinating book that unites scientific discoveries about the universe with our call to build of the Body of Christ and shows us how this is being accomplished through the Spirit. The book is so rich and I have just read it through and will begin again at the beginning to go through it slowly to try and digest the wisdom that Delio's book contains. She is a senior fellow in science and religion at Woodstock Theological Center, Georgetown University and is the author of several books including "Christ In Evolution."
This book makes a good companion to "The New Spiritual Exercises In the Spirit of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin"; it is not easy to read Delio but very worthwhile. She does have a Glossary and excellent notes. There are so many good parts, but I will quote only one from Chapter Nine: "If there is a movement towards wholeness in the universe, then it is first a movement toward wholeness of soul. Wholeness is the integrated field of energy whereby all bodies are joined together by a luminous thread of love. This can take place only when each soul discovers its own power to expand and hence its power to unite. Cosmic-unity is first self-unity; this is the core of the Christian spiritual journey. To participate in the flourishing of life in the universe is to discover first the inner universe; indeed, the secret of the universe lies within."

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Book of Hours


Thomas Merton's A Book of Hours was published by Sorin Books in 2007 and sat on my bookshelf until it was mentioned by my retreat director this summer. I came home, found the book in pristine condition and started using it. It was edited by Kathleen Deignan but the words are all Merton's and he has some phrases that one wants to linger over. It is a book that can be dipped into at different times of the day as it is divided into the seven days of the week with each day having its own section for dawn, day, dusk and dark.
I will share here two quotes that I copied in my journal from the book:
"Be content, be content.
We are the Body of Christ.
We have found Him, He has found us.
We are in Him, He in us.
There is nothing further to look for, except the deepening of this life we already possess.
Be content."


"No matter how simple discourse may be, it is never simple enough.
No matter how simple thought may be, it is never simple enough.
No matter how simple love may be, it is never simple enough.
The only thing left is the simplicity of the soul in God, or better, the simplicity of God."

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Books and our Inward Journey


Books have always led me down a path of interior life; sometimes this is just day dreaming, but most spiritual books have led me to reflect on God's love and His constant presence and action in my life and the lives of others. I promised to share some of my thoughts from the books I listed on October 1. Today I realize that I need to give this more thought. In the meantime, let us all reflect on what a gift a book is and what a wonderful invention that first made the oral word into writing; then, after years of developing written communication and ways to store the writings, we came to the printing press! Now we have billions of books, libraries, e-books, and we read on Nooks and Kindles. Still, the power of the written word reaches us in newspapers, magazines, brochures, letters, ads, and signs. Let us spend time today recalling favorite books that have led us deeper inside ourselves or books that have opened new horizons for us. We all have favorite books we love to reread. Above all, let us be grateful for the great gift of books!

Changed Heart, Changed World


Another book that I have recently read and enjoyed in William A. Barry, S.J.'s Changed Heart,Changed World: The Transforming Freedom of Friendship with God. Loyola, 2011. I have found all of Bill Barry's books helpful and easy to read. He stresses God's unconditional love for each of us and that really is a big part of my own spirituality. This is not one of my favorites of all his books, but it does have some new ideas. I like the author and would love to make a directed retreat with him. He is a well-known spiritual director and is tertian director for the New England Province of the Society of Jesus.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Putting on the Heart of Christ


Today I will try to give a brief review of Gerald M. Fagin, S.J.'s book that I have been using but have not really read it: Putting on the Heart of Christ: How the Spiritual Exercises Invite Us to a Virtuous Life. Loyola Press, 2010.
The author takes a new approach to the Spiritual Exercises in the sense that he encourages us to foster the 15 virtues that he explores in connection with the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius. It is a very practical book and at the end of each chapter there are several questions for reflection and several scripture passages that are connected with the virtue.
Those familiar with the Exercises will not be surprised by these 15 virtues which I am listing for you here from the Table of Contents: Reverence, Gratitude, Freedom, Compunction, Forgiveness, Generosity, Faith, Prudence, Hospitality, Humility, Fidelity, Compassion, Joy, Hope, and Love.
Gerry died rather recently but he had been a spiritual director for 35 years and taught courses on Ignatian Spirituality at Loyola University in New Orleans. I think his book will help us focus on "Who has Christ called me to be?

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Books are pathways into ourselves, into God, into our world


I have not time to reflect here on what has been going through my head this Sunday. October 2 was always a special day for me as it was my mother's birthday and the feast of all the angels.
I have to leave for an appointment but will try to add to this later today as I am thinking of where books lead us!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Some Spiritual Books Worth Reading


Today I will list a few and then talk about them in my blogs during the next week or more. Many have told me that this is helpful for them and so I have been buying and using some of the best books out in 2011 and I am happy to post them here for you.

New Spiritual Books: (These are not in any special order, but I hope to say a word about each starting next week.) You will note that not all the books were published in 2011, but they are new books to me, even if Merton's book was sitting on my shelf until my retreat director mentioned it!



Delio,Ilia. The Emergent Christ: Exploring the Meaning of Catholic in an Evolutionary Universe. Orbis, 2011.

Coutinho, Paul, S.J. An Ignatian Pathway: Experiencing The Mystical Dimension of The Spiritual Exercises. Loyola Press, 2011.

Fagin, Gerald M., S.J. Putting on the Heart of Christ: How the Spiritual Exercises Invite Us to a Virtuous Life. Loyola Press, 2010.

Ford, Michael. Spiritual Masters For All Seasons. Hidden Spring, 2009.

Rolheiser, Ronald. Our One Great Act of Fidelity: Waiting for Christ in the Eucharist. Doubleday, 2011.

Merton, Thomas: A Book of Hours. Edited by Kathleen Deignan. Sorin, 2007.

Frykholm, Amy. A Contemplative Biography: Julian of Norwich. Paraclete, 2010.

Barry, William A. Changed Heart, Changed World: The Transforming Freedom of Friendship with God. Loyola Press, 2011.

Savary, Louis M. The New Spiritual Exercises in the Spirit of Teilhard de Chardin. Paulist Press, 2010.

Chittister, Joan. The Monastery of the Heart: An Invitation to a Meaningful Life. Bluebridge, 2011.

Ratsinger, Joseph. Pope Benedict XVI. Jesus of Nazareth: Part Two. From the Entrance into Jerusalem to the Resurrection. Ignatius Press, 2011.