The Real Strong Man

The Real Strong Man

Medal of St Benedict pewsitter has an article up on how there’s a surge in Satanism due to the rise of the internet, Exorcism is the subject of a six-day conference being held this week at the Regina Apostolorum Pontifical University in Rome, which is under the Vatican’s authority. “The internet makes it much easier than in the past to find information about Satanism,” said Carlo Climati, a member of the university who specialises in the dangers posed to young people by Satanism. “In just a few minutes you can contact Satanist groups and research occultism. The conference is not about how to become an exorcist. It’s to share information about exorcism, Satanism and sects. It’s to give help to families and priests. There...

How to Pray in the Midst of a Fiery Furnace

How to Pray in the Midst of a Fiery Furnace

Today’s first reading of the Mass: Daniel 3: 25, 34-43 (NAB) You remember the story in the Old Testament book of Daniel about the great god/king, Nebuchadnezzar, who ordered everyone to worship the golden statue and the refusal of the 3 young Israelite captives to pamper his ego and bow to a pagan god. The king ordered them all thrown into a fiery furnace which was so hot, the flames slew the men who threw them in. But, from within the flames comes the prayer of Azariah, a holy young man, whose confident cries in the midst of the flames has something to teach me about prayer. For starters, he’s not casting his fist to the heavens blaming God for allowing him to suffer such injustice. Rather his bold prayer comes from the humble recognition of the sins...

God of My Gladness and Joy

God of My Gladness and Joy

Triptych of the Cleansing of Naaman: by Cornelis Engelbrechtsen 2 Kings 5:1-25 Luke 4:24-30 Yesterday, it was a spiritually thirsty Samaritan women at a well, not aware of her desperate need until Jesus revealed her sin and offered her a drink from the spring of water welling up to eternal life. Today, it’s Naaman, a respected, valiant commander of an army…whose leprosy had made him a desperate man. Actually, both were desperate, one had lived a scandalous life; 5 marriages and living with a man who wasn’t her husband, the other had reputation, but an incurable disease. Life has a way of bringing us to our knees. It will force us to submit and admit that our humanity is designed to need God. Our nature is designed to thirst for God, but it is...

Let the Hearts That Seek the Lord Rejoice

Let the Hearts That Seek the Lord Rejoice

Music of the Church “Laetetur Cor Quaerentium” Gregorian meditation Let the hearts that seek The Lord rejoice Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice! Seek the LORD and his strength; seek his presence continually! Remember the wondrous works that he has done, his miracles, and the judgements he uttered. —Psalm 105: 3-5 Today is holy to the Lord Your God. Do not be sad, and do not weep; for today is holy to our Lord. Do not be saddened this day, for rejoicing in the Lord must be your strength. —Nehemiah 8: 9-10...

Mary, Star of Hope

Mary, Star of Hope

Philippe de Champaigne The Annunciation, ca.1644 Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City “When God called Mary “full of grace” the hope of salvation for the human race was enkindled: a daughter of our people found grace in the Lord’s eyes, he chose her as Mother of the Redeemer. In the simplicity of Mary’s home, in a poor village of Galilee, the solemn prophecy of salvation began to be fulfilled: “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel” (Gn 3: 15). Therefore the Christian people have made their own the canticle of praise that the Jews raised to Judith and that just a little while ago we prayed as a Responsorial Psalm: “O daughter, you are blessed by the Most...

Blessed is the Man Who Trusts in the Lord

Blessed is the Man Who Trusts in the Lord

Jeremiah 17:5-10 Absolute truths are unacceptable in a culture of relativism, but God offers us a choice between the way to blessing or the path of a curse and not because He’s a tyrant. Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his arm, whose heart turns away from the Lord. He is like a shrub in the desert and shall not see any good come…… Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is in the Lord, He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out it’s roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for it’s leaves remain forever green…. —Jeremiah 17 :5-10 Jerusalem was divided into two camps in Jeremiah’s day. Those who trusted in man to save them from their Babylonian oppressors, and...

Balancing Act

Balancing Act

Arrange all things, so that the strong have something to yearn after, and the weak have nothing to run from. —RB 64:19 Before I met with my spiritual director the other day, I asked the Lord, What should I share with her this week? God is always faithful to show me myself. Tell her your out of balance. Ouch!  I think I knew that, but apart from the help of the Holy Spirit, I would not have caught it soon enough. I’m so good at just pushing through and forcing myself to do what I know I have to do before suddenly realizing I’m out of steam. Now, as a Benedictine however, just pushing on doesn’t work anymore. I have an inner sense when things are out of focus. Balance is hard to put in words, I think you just have to learn to live it....

Love Is Not Resentful

Love Is Not Resentful

This was one of my reading assignments for my next oblate meeting. What a beautiful message from the Holy Father on the call to forgiveness as we journey to Jerusalem with Jesus. It’s not that long, and worth taking time to read. MESSAGE OF THE HOLY FATHER JOHN PAUL II FOR LENT 2001 Love is not resentful (1 Cor 13:5) 1. “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem” (Mk 10:33). With these words, the Lord invites the disciples to journey with him on the path that leads from Galilee to the place where he will complete his redemptive mission. This journey to Jerusalem, which the Evangelists present as the crowning moment of the earthly journey of Jesus, is the model for the Christian who is committed to following the Master on the way of the Cross. Christ...

Our Firm Foundation of Hope

Our Firm Foundation of Hope

Genesis 12:1-4 2 Timothy 1:8b-10 Matthew 17:1-9 I have a lot of accountability in my life. I design it that way because I’m just an ordinary woman who loves Christ with all my heart and soul…and I know better than to put any confidence in my flesh. ( Philippians 3:3)  My whole family reads this blog, including my husband and children…Whatever I write I always know it will pass their eyes. When I’m low they lift me up, when I lose confidence they remind me of what my true motive should be, when I dance around what really needs to be said, they challenge me not sell out the real reason I’m even writing. But most assuredly, I can count on them to help me get over myself. It’s not about you, Mom, just write. So, today I’ll...

Prayer to St Joseph for Priests

Prayer to St Joseph for Priests

I found this beautiful prayer written by Father Mark,  Prior of the Diocesan Benedictine Monastery of Our Lady of the Cenacle in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He has a beautiful site you may want to visit. vultus.stblogs.org It seems in addition to the warfare being waged today against the family we have one raging against our priests. Both are on the cross. This Lent, I offer all my prayers, works, joys and sufferings for the redemption of the family over whom Saint Joseph is protector and for priests for whom he is a powerful advocate and spiritual father. +PAX PRAYER TO SAINT JOSEPH FOR PRIESTS O glorious Saint Joseph, who, on the word of the angel speaking to you in the night, put fear aside to take your Virgin Bride into your home, show yourself today the advocate and...

Break Up Your Fallow Ground

Break Up Your Fallow Ground

A Harrow Cart Sow for yourselves righteousness, reap the fruit of mercy; break up your fallow ground, for it is time to seek the Lord, that He may come and rain salvation upon you. —Hosea 10: 12 I’m hungry for more of Jesus in my life. But if I’m really serious about ‘inflaming my desire’ for Him, I’m going to have to break up some fallow ground in my heart this Lent. I’m not exaggerating when I say I’ve been very faithful to keeping the plows off of some resentments and grumblings I feel entitled to. Sometimes I say to my Lord, Look at the rest of the field, isn’t it pretty? In my minds eye I hear myself talking a blue streak to my Savior trying to convince Him ‘please don’t ask me to walk over to...