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Inspires
 

 
Being Christian in Public

Our final challenge in our Lenten wilderness experience is a call to courage. Most Catholics aren’t courageous about professing their faith in Jesus. We’ve talked many times about our fear of making the sign of the Cross in public, about sharing our Christian opinion with our friends because our stance isn’t popular, about discussing anything religious. We want to fit in above all else, and so we act like we’re not Christian.
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 28


 
Four Odd Scenes from Mark’s Passion Narratives

It has often been remarked that the Gospels are not so much biographies of Jesus but “a passion narratives with long introductions.” The problem is that the very familiarity of the story can undermine our understanding of it. In this reflection, we are drawing our attention to four odd details of the Passion of Jesus in Mark's Gospel, which will shed us light on some scenes that we would normally overlook.
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 28


 
Pope Francis: Mary accompanies those who are on their deathbed in solitude

(Vatican News) At the weekly General Audience, Pope Francis reflects on the theme of prayer in communion with Mary, and says Our Lady is at the bedside of those who die alone without the comfort of their loved ones.
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 24


 
“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— / I took the one less traveled by, / And that has made all the difference.” (Robert Frost, “The Road Not Taken”)

The road less travelled for each one of us is the way of Christ. We must humbly ask God to “create a clean heart … a steadfast spirit renew within [us]” that we may know and love God “with all [our] heart, and with all [our] soul, and with all [our] might” (Ps 51: 10,12; Dt 6:5).
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 21


 
Renewing Our Hearts

Today, we’re talking about renewing our hearts, and two stories stand out in my mind as opposite starting points. One time, I was having a deep, late-night conversation with a friend, and I don’t remember how we got onto the topic, but he caught me off guard when he said, “I wish I weren’t having sex with my girlfriend.” Most people do want to have sex, but he was expressing a deeper desire. I never forgot his words because they came from his heart.
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 21


 
Pope Francis: The work of the Holy Spirit is to remind us of Jesus, to make Him present in the lives of Christians of every time and place

(Vatican News) Pope Francis concludes his catechesis on “prayer as a relationship with the Holy Trinity,” focusing at Wednesday’s General Audience on the work of the Holy Spirit.
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 17


 
Jesus, our Saviour and beacon of hope

“whoever believes in Him may have eternal life” (Jn 3:15)
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 14


 
Pope Francis: The response to war is fraternity

(Vatican News) Pope Francis reflects on his recent Apostolic Journey to Iraq during the weekly General Audience, and highlights a penitential sense he felt during his visit, as well as the joy of the Iraqi people at welcoming Christ's message.
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 11


 
Have Mercy on Yourself, Because God Does

Our theme today is: Have mercy on yourself, because God does. For the past three weeks, He’s challenged us to overcome our sloth, to take more responsibility in our prayer, and to root out poor language. If we’ve been with Jesus in the wilderness and facing our demons, we shouldn’t be exhausted, but should be tired. So, God wants you to rest.
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 14


 
The Word of God Is Love Not Violence

Just as Isaiah’s nakedness doesn’t make him a flasher; Jesus’ destructive act doesn’t make him a violent person.
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 7


 
Change Our Words, Change Our Love

Let’s talk about the sins of cursing, profanity, and vulgarity. Most of us (not all, but most) would agree that such language is generally wrong. None of you swears around me. How would you feel if I swore? There’s a video by Jimmy Kimmel asking if children know any naughty words, and it’s insightful regarding our society: On one hand, the crowd cheers when a boy swears; on the other, they’re shocked when another boy uses a very disparaging word. So, there’s a tension: We feel vulgar language isn’t right, but it’s not that bad.
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 7


 
Pope Francis: It is only through Jesus that we have the “courage” to believe in a God that loves humanity

(Vatican News) At Wednesday’s Audience, Pope Francis says we have access to the Trinity through prayer, thanks to Jesus.
Publish date: 2021 - 3 - 3


To go through life's nadir at the foot of the mountain

 
To go through life’s nadir at the foot of the mountain

Glimpses and tastes of glory that once exhilarated the disciples can also exhilarate us.
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 28


 
Seeing Into the Future

Over the years, I’ve reminded you how God takes care of us in suffering, but today I’m challenging you to make it your own by doing a spiritual exercise.
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 28


 
Pope Francis: Ask Christ for the gift of mercy to allow Christ’s mercy to embrace us and penetrate us

(Vatican News) Pope Francis says we are called to pass on “the fire of Jesus’ mercy”, in a letter marking the 90th anniversary of the first apparition to St Maria Faustina Kowalska in Płock, Poland.
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 24


 
Lent is a Time of Grace

At the heart of Lent is an invitation to dig deeper: to reflect, review, and renew; it is, indeed, a springboard for radical transformation of our heart and mind.
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 21


 
Pope Francis: In life’s most painful wounds, God awaits us with His infinite mercy

(Vatican News) Pope Francis celebrates Mass on Ash Wednesday in St. Peter’s Basilica, and urges Christians to experience Lent as a return journey toward the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 18


 
Defeating Spiritual Laziness

Here’s a list of the seven deadly sins: pride, avarice, lust, envy, gluttony, anger, and sloth. We basically understand most of them, except perhaps for sloth, which is more than laziness. The best way to understand sloth is with a description. Imagine a man who’s successful in life: He supports and loves his family, succeeds at work, sleeps enough, exercises, and makes time for friends. When it comes to his relationship with God, he gives little time to this, and does the minimum for his spiritual needs. He’s not a bad person. But we know he has the sin of sloth precisely because, in other areas of his life, he’s driven.
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 21


 
“If you choose, you can make me clean” (Mk 1: 40)

“I do choose. Be made clean!” (Mk 1: 41)
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 14


 
Reaching Out to the Marginalized

In 2013, Vinicio Riva went to Rome and, during a large papal audience, reached out to kiss Pope Francis’s ring, and the Holy Father embraced him. The world took notice because Vinicio is severely disfigured due to neurofibromatosis. Here are two pictures (https://www.ncronline.org/sites/default/files/styles/article_slideshow/public/stories/images/DisfiguredMan.jpg?itok=cerWemjF; https://media.newyorker.com/photos/590951ec2179605b11ad3278/master/pass/pope-francis-kisses-face-580.jpeg). Normally, people stay away from him, which is why he said, “What astonished me is that [the pope] didn’t think twice on embracing me. I’m not contagious, but he didn’t know. He just did it; he caressed all my face, and while he was doing that, I felt only love.
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 14


 
Pope Francis: It is prayer that transforms the today we are living into grace

(Vatican News) Continuing his catechesis on Christian prayer, Pope Francis reflects on why and how we should pray in all the events of everyday life.
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 10


 
Madness or Love? It’s all in the Eyes of the Beholder

Call him a madman, a weirdo, or anything you want; the reality is, the fire in Paul’s heart, ignited by the Spirit, is something people won’t understand unless they are prepared to welcome the same Spirit into their hearts.
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 7


 
Pope Francis: Liturgy is an act that founds the whole Christian experience

(Vatican News) Pope Francis continues his catechesis on Christian prayer at the weekly General Audience, and reflects on how liturgical prayer unites us to Christ.
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 4


 
The Fullness of Life

If you had a magical power to change the world, what would you do (Matthew Kelly, The Four Signs of a Dynamic Catholic, 143-145)? “Superheroes use their powers to outwit the bad guys”; song writers use their powers to win the heart of the one they love. But, if we had the power to change the world, shouldn’t we use it for the greatest good, for the greatest number of people, and for the longest duration?
Publish date: 2021 - 2 - 7