Today, January 31, is the feast day of St. John Bosco. He is known for fouding an organization dedicated to serving the poor youth of Italy. He was like a father to them, and so they called him Don Bosco, basically Father Bosco (Don means Father in Italian). (Video below, links at the end of this post.)Continue reading “Don Bosco and his Prophecy of the Two Columns”
Greetings! Good to see you! Well, I can’t see you see you, but—oh, you know what I mean. Tonight I’ve got a couple of quick personal updates and then I’ll share something I’ve found recently on the web while
surfing the web doing important research for an important writing project. Ahem.
First: If you follow me on Twitter, then you’ve probably seen my tweets about my sister. She’s been going through some rough times with some painful health issues. She’s doing better but still has a way to go to be fully healed. To those of you who have been praying, thank you. I appreciate it and so does she, very much. Twitter & blog family prayer warriors rock!Continue reading “A few words, a cuppa and anotha”
In honor of the International Day of Yoga I assumed one pose and that was: curled up on the couch with Miss Lucy Dawg, surfing the web, researching yoga for something I want to write and to further my understanding. I’m not ready to write in depth about it yet, but as a former new ager and one who studied yoga longer than I practiced the asanas, I’ll go on record to say, as I’ve said many times before: Yoga is emphatically NOT compatible with any form of real Christianity. Sure, you’ll find lots of Christians who will argue that it is compatible, and you’ll find yoga and other forms of occultism offered in many ostensibly Christian places by many people who are ostensibly Christian, even in religious houses where people are ostensibly consecrated to the Christian religious life.Continue reading “For the International Day of Yoga I Assumed One Pose”
Of all the things I’d hoped to do during Lent, I’ve managed only to prove to myself that I am even weaker than I already knew. But, lucky for you, I have also spent some time listening to an audio course in Spiritual Theology taught by Dr. Brant Pitre. It’s available in DVD, CD or MP3 formats. (I bought the MP3 set so I could download it immediately and have been listening to it on my iPhone in GoodReader.)
One of the earliest purchases I made after becoming attracted to the Catholic Church in the ’90s was Fr. Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange’s marvelous two-volume work, The Three Ages of the Interior Life. This was the first Christian work of its kind I had ever seen and I’m so glad I got it then in a clothbound edition. I have read and re-read Volume One, and have read Volume Two through at least once.
Why do I mention Fr. Garrigou-Lagrange’s book? Because Dr. Pitre uses it in his course! How exciting! For me, it is. (Stop looking at me like that. I know I’m a nerd. And you do, too, if you’ve even glanced at this site before. So there.) And that’s not all. Dr. Pitre uses several others that either I had in print or Kindle format, in my Verbum library or found online in PDF or other downloadable eBook formats for free. And, before you ask, of course I’ll give you links. Kind of me, yes? (Okay, my aforementioned weakness has engendered not quite enough humility in me. Yet.)
Sources used in the course include those in the list below. I’ve listed Kindle and print formats; eBook refers to various formats available mostly through the Internet Archive for free. On the course page there’s a link to a PDF outline of the course (scroll down). I strongly recommend that you download the outline even if only as a guide for your own study. What an amazing amount of teaching and work Dr. Pitre has put together for us! Btw, this is not a complete list. But if you get the free PDFs, Fr. Dubay’s Fire Within, and Fr. Garrigou-Lagrange’s books listed (PDFs or Kindle), then I reckon you’ll be fine. I also reckon you already have a good and well-worn Catholic Bible and, of course, a much dog-eared copy of the Catechism. (You do, don’t you?)
- Fr. Thomas Dubay, SM, Fire Within, Kindle, Paper
- Fr. Adolphe Tanqueray, The Spiritual Life, Hardcover, eBook
- Fr. Jordan Aumann, OP, Spiritual Theology, Kindle, Print, eBook
- Fr. Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, The Three Ages of the Interior Life, Kindle, Print Set (TAN Books & Publishers), eBook
- Fr. Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, The Three Ways of the Spiritual Life, Kindle, Print (now published as The Three Conversions in the Spiritual Life)
- St. John of the Cross, OCD, Collected Works, ICS edition (in one volume), Kindle, Print
- St. Teresa of Avila, OCD, Collected Works, ICS edition, Vol 2, Kindle, Print
- St. Thérèse of Lisieux, OCD, Story of a Soul, ICS edition, Kindle, Print
- St. Francis de Sales, Introduction to the Devout Life, Kindle, Print Translated by John K Ryan, Print TAN edition, eBook
- St. Louis de Montfort, Secret of the Rosary, Kindle, Print, eBook
- St. John Paul II, Apostolic Letter, Rosarium Virginis Mariae, Online
- St. Bonaventure, The Soul’s Journey to God (or Journey of the Mind into God), Kindle, Print, PDF
- St. Thomas Aquinas, OP, Summa Theologica (or Theologia), Kindle, PDF, Online, Print (Seriously? Wow. Go for it! All my copies are digital.)
- Dom Jean-Baptiste Chautard, OCSO, The Soul of the Apostolate, Kindle, Print
- The Holy Bible. I highly recommend the RSV-CE or RSV-SCE*
- The Catechism of the Catholic Church (online free, Kindle or paperback under $10)
*The RSV is available in two different Catholic editions, the RSV-CE (Catholic Edition) and the RSV-SCE (Second Catholic Edition). I use both because I like the SCE but the CE is available in interlinear format in my Verbum software. Can I read the interlinear Biblical Hebrew or Greek? Heck, no. But I like to explore and learn so I do use it. A little. I hope to learn to use it more as time goes on.
Another form of the RSV for Catholics is the Ignatius Study Bible RSV-SCE, but is only complete through the New Testament as of this writing. You can buy the NT in separate booklets or the whole NT in paperback, hardback or leatherbound. (Several books of the Old Testament are available now in booklet format, but I don’t know when the entire OT study edition will be available.) This is such a great study help because it’s the work of Scott Hahn and Curtis Mitch.
I was listening to “At Home with Jim and Joy” (Pinto) yesterday on Catholic radio and, as usual, I heard something that really stuck with me. Joy said, “Filter your words through the Word of God.” I don’t know about you, but that would filter out a lot of my own words, both spoken and unspoken. I’ve been studying Scripture on and off for a long time, but I need to be praying the Word. Time to get back to praying the Daily Office. And attending Daily Mass. Lord knows (yes, He really does!), I need His help! Thank you for these wise words, Joy!
I’m working on some blog posts, one in particular I want to get written and posted at some point today. How many Catholics are there who do not know the precepts of the Church? How many do not know how many there are? (Hint: FIVE!) How many Catholics know what the purpose of the precepts are? How many Catholics know that tomorrow is a Holy Day of Obligation? Yeah, it’s not just the day after Halloween. Oy. How many Catholics know what a Holy Day of Obligation is? Do these things matter? Do you need to know them? Where can you find the answers, for yourself or for others when they ask you? Stay tuned. I’m working on the posts and plan to have at least one posted on the blog later today.
Jeff and Emily Cavins have a new Scripture study soon to be released through Ascension Press. You may be familiar with Jeff from the show he produced and hosted for several years on EWTN, Life on the Rock, and from his work with Dr. Scott Hahn on EWTN’s popular series Our Father’s Plan (listen to or download from EWTN, buy from Amazon or from EWTN Religious Catalogue) and the Great Adventure: A Journey Through the Bible.
This new series is intended to be less a study and more an introduction to lectio divina, praying with and meditation on Scripture, and conversation with God, an intimate and life-changing encounter with the living Christ. Hopefully a parish near here will offer this study soon. If not, I may have to get a set of the DVD’s for myself. (See video below or watch on YouTube. See website.)
Daring to Walk the Walk, the first study in the Walking Toward Eternity series, introduces you to seven key virtues and outlines practical steps for living them out in your life.
At the end of each session, you will come to the point of change as you ask the Lord three keys questions:
1. What are you asking of me Lord?
2. What specifically do you want me to do?
Read or listen to more about lectio divina, praying the Scriptures:
Don’t feel bad if you didn’t know about it. I’ve been sharing this message with people since the fall of 2009 when I first read about it and no one I’ve talked to has ever heard of it before I told them. There is an explicit link between the message given to Saint Faustina, the Devotion to the Divine Mercy, and the sin of abortion. I had read the Diary, Divine Mercy in my Soul, and I didn’t remember seeing it. But it’s there. And there is a special Apostolic Blessing from Pope John Paul II for those who pray the Chaplet to end abortion, and also five special intentions to be used. Did you know any of that?
See the Divine Mercy and Abortion page, added tonight, March 1 2012. And, please, share this with your friends, family and priests! All Catholics should know this!
The Ignatian Spiritual Exercises Retreat via Podcast began tonight (also see earlier post) and I found out a bit more about how this is going to work. The audio will be available at 8pm Eastern and 7pm Central Monday through Friday nights via BlogTalkRadio. You can listen to or download the file at BlogTalkRadio (here’s the link to the Spiritual Exercises Kickoff Show), subscribe to the show’s RSS feed, or subscribe to the iTunes podcast. But the audio will be available immediately at BlogTalkRadio; it’ll show up on the iTunes feed generally about a day later. (Of course, after I posted this, I found that iTunes does have the first show up already at 9:48pm CT. Oy.) Gary keeps the file size small enough to make it easy to download but large enough for pretty good quality. (It’s spoken word so you can get away with that.)
I listened to the first part of the retreat while grabbing a quick dinner (at a place with wifi) on the way home from a few hours out on the sidewalk in front of Planned Parenthood today. Now I’m home and as soon as I post this update, I’m going to finish listening and do the meditations, which aim at helping us discern God’s will in and for our lives. And, as they say, that’s just what the doctor ordered. Doctor of souls, that is.
After that, it’s beddie-bye time for me. I promised the dogs we’d go to the park in the morning before Mass, then it’s back to the sidewalk and 40 Days for Life. (Good thing I got new walking shoes today. My feet feel so much better!)
I’ve been wanting to make a retreat for some time now with the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius of Loyola, but have not been able to be away from home for as long as a month or even a week. And I just missed a weekend Ignatian retreat in a nearby town, didn’t find out until it was over. Plus there’s that little matter of not being able to afford to give even a small stipend to the retreat center for the great gift of the Exercises. But I really want to do this. I’ve never made a retreat of any kind and I know I need to do it.
Gary Zimak to the rescue! Gary, of Following the Truth, has decided (and was prompted by the Holy Spirit) to offer the Spiritual Exercises through his podcast via iTunes or BlogTalkRadio during Lent, starting Monday, Feb. 27, through Good Friday. (See promotional YouTube video below.)
Problem solved! And no excuse either. I don’t need to go anywhere, I can just download the podcast and listen on my iPod or computer, any time and as many times as I want to. For free. And I can keep these podcasts and make a retreat a month from now or next year or five years from now.
This is a God-send. A real God-send! Thank you, Gary! I’m looking forward to this. God is so good!
My favorite time of year is not spring or summer or fall or winter. It’s Lent. I enjoy Advent and Christmas. And Easter, of course. But Lent is the season I look forward to all year. Especially since I started participating in the 40 Days for Life campaign to end abortion. There are two campaigns per year, one in the fall and one in spring. The current campaign coincides with Lent, as it did last year. This is a time of penance, fasting, prayer and alms-giving (don’t forget the alms-giving!), and spending time in peaceful prayer vigil out on the sidewalk during these forty days is a wonderful way to enter more fully into the spirit of the Lenten season. Continue reading “Something different for Lent: Don’t just say you’re prolife, prove it”