St. Catherine of Siena

Today is the Feast of St. Catherine of Siena – Doctor of the Church, along with St. Francis of Assisi, patron of Italy, mystic, activist, and author – and the list goes on. There is lots of  online articles about her life, her writings and more, but through the auspices of Bishop Barron and his Word-on-Fire ministry, today only (April 29, 2020) you can watch his video on St. Catherine of Siena: The Mystic. It is free to view until midnight Pacific Coast time. Continue reading

Confessions of a Live-Streaming Catholic

This is a wonderful article by Ms. Jennifer Manning, mom, teacher, scholar and gifted writer. Jennifer’s mom works with me in the parish and passed her daughter’s “musings” along. And with Jennifer’s permission, I pass this along for your enjoyment.

About a week into the stay-at-home order in Massachusetts, one of my colleagues sent an email expressing how he missed life at the Jesuit, all boys school where we teach. He wrote something like, “I find myself struggling with missing the students, all of you, and the Eucharist.” Continue reading

The Gatekeeper

Next Sunday is the 4th Easter of Sunday. You can read a complete commentary on the Gospel here.

1 “Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever does not enter a sheepfold through the gate but climbs over elsewhere is a thief and a robber. 2 But whoever enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep.    3 The gatekeeper opens it for him, and the sheep hear his voice, as he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has driven out all his own, he walks ahead of them, and the sheep follow him, because they recognize his voice. 5 But they will not follow a stranger; they will run away from him, because they do not recognize the voice of strangers.” 6 Although Jesus used this figure of speech, they did not realize what he was trying to tell them. 7 So Jesus said again, “Amen, amen, I say to you, I am the gate for the sheep. 8 All who came (before me) are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. 9 I am the gate. Whoever enters through me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture. 10 A thief comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy; I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly. (John 10:1-10) Continue reading

Turning out well

I have been leading Bible studies for a long time now. I think the first one was in 1984. When I think back, it seems to me, that each time we study St. Luke’s account called the “Road to Emmaus” the same basic questions arise. “How could these two people, clearly disciples, people who may have followed Jesus for maybe three years – having seen the miracles, the mighty works, heard the preaching, seen Lazarus raised from the dead, and heard Jesus proclaim that he would be put to death and then rise – how could they then hear the reports of the empty tomb and then walk away in a slow descent into despair? Don’t they get it?  How could they not get it? Where is their faith?” Continue reading

Spring cleaning

I would guess many of you are doing special projects, taking up hobbies, or just “spring cleaning” – part of life under “safer-at-home” protocols. The other day I was starting to “spring clean” my room in the parish office. The problem with such endeavors is that you open something, get fascinated by the contents, show the object to someone else, begin to tell stories, and the next thing you know a whole lot of time has passed by. Hopefully, it was not the first box you opened as it might completely derail the larger cleaning project. In my case, it was not the first box, but it was the second. And look what was inside! Continue reading

Image of God

Happy Saturday! Again I offer up another video from the good people at BibleProject.com

This video traces the idea of humans as co-rulers alongside God, who are commissioned to develop the world and its resources and take it into new horizons. How has this human vocation been compromised by our selfishness and evil, and how did Jesus open up a new way of being human through his life, death, and resurrection?

Quarantine-15

I heard a new expression today – probably several weeks old but new to me: “quarantine 15.” Similar to the freshman-15 when a college student enters a new rhythm of life and may develop habits of nutrition that do not serve overall well being. Here is these days of “safer-at-home,” we are facing new rhythms, spending more time at home and just might be discovering a whole new meaning for the word, “homebody.”

You may notice it creating some tension between you and your health goals. Mindlessly wandering into the kitchen, snacking on the couch, munching on something while working, or grabbing bites of your child’s leftovers can all add up over the course of the unknown timeline of the ‘Safer-at-Home’ recommendations. These snacking or overeating behaviors may be due to boredom, stress eating, loneliness, or just easy access. If you catch yourself falling victim to the “Quarantine-15” check out these Mindful Eating Tips from the healthcare experts at the Tampa General Hospital

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Something wonderful

“Something wicked this way comes.” I have always thought that this phrase is elegant – alarming and scary for sure, but elegant nonetheless. Compare it to “Here comes something wicked” or any other more mundane turn of the phrase. The line is original to Macbeth: “By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes”, spoken by by the witches (Act 4, Scene 1). The line is a very striking piece of verse, not only because of it phrasing, but also because of its ominous announcement of an approaching evil, some monster coming into the moment. In its hearing Macbeth has no idea that he is the monster that is coming, or rather becoming. Continue reading