Tag: "prayer"

Faith, Hope, and Love in the Annunciation
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Faith, Hope, and Love in the Annunciation

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One of my most fond memories of my semester in Rome was from our trip to Northern Italy. We visited quite a few museums and beautiful churches, yet one moment that stuck with me was our visit in Florence. After a long and beautiful Tuscan day, several of us went to a bar. Nights like […]

Mount Rushmore with American Flag Background
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National Day of Prayer 2017

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Thursday, May 4th, 2017.

<i>Praying the Angelus</i> - (Re)Discover an Ancient Prayer
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Praying the Angelus – (Re)Discover an Ancient Prayer

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My knowledge of the Angelus prayer was minimal at best before reading Praying the Angelus by Jared Dees (Ave Maria Press, 2017). I doubt that I am alone in that regard. Dees, a high school theology teacher, describes his own confusion when first listening to the Angelus in Latin when in Rome and then learning […]

Prayers For Our Country
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Prayers For Our Country

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From the Roman Missal.

Seven People to Pray for Today
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Seven People to Pray for Today

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It’s easy to fall into the habit of praying in too small a circle. We pray for our personal intentions, for our families and closest friends, our parish, but we sometimes forget to open the lens a bit and commit to intercessory prayer for those who may have no one praying for them at all. […]

On the Beautiful Prayer of Crying
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On the Beautiful Prayer of Crying

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A boy falls and skins his knees. A boy wrestles in the living room and bonks his head on the coffee table. A boy tries to field a ground ball at shortstop, only to take a bad hop that bloodies his nose, or gets plowed by a much bigger boy on the football field. “Boys […]

Holy Spirit, Inspire Me to Speak
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Holy Spirit, Inspire Me to Speak

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Holy Week and Easter Sunday, the 2016 versions, are in our rearview mirror. That means we are in the midst of the Easter Season – a.k.a. Eastertide or Paschal Time. To exemplify the importance the season holds on the Church liturgical calendar, Eastertide lasts 50 days, longer than both Lent and Advent. St. Athanasius reckoned […]

Two Ways to Maximize Prayers This Lent
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Two Ways to Maximize Prayers This Lent

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Supersize, maximize, be all you can be…because if you are going to do something, why not get the most out of it? Prayer is one of those things. We know we can do it poorly — babbling like the pagans do and not even paying attention to what we are saying. “What the world most […]

A Matter Of Penance or Radical Permission
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A Matter Of Penance or Radical Permission

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This past Advent as I attended Sacrament of Reconciliation, the priest mercifully imposed a seemingly unchallenging penance: say one “Our Father.” The 10-year-old Mike would have loved that penance a whole lot more than what the priest typically prescribed at the time. I’ll never forget the day he prescribed young Mike an entire Rosary as […]

Your 2016 Handy-Dandy List of Lenten Resources
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Your 2016 Handy-Dandy List of Lenten Resources

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Lent comes early this year. February 10th is Ash Wednesday! That’s just three weeks away, folks. So instead of waiting until the last minute and grasping at your old standbys (giving up chocolate or God forbid, coffee), why not plan ahead using our convenient list of resources below? Make this your most spiritually fruitful Lent ever! Reprinted with […]

From Loathing to Loving the Rosary
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From Loathing to Loving the Rosary

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One of the things I love about Advent and Christmas is the extra emphasis on the Blessed Mother. As a motherless Catholic, it’s been easy to embrace Mary as my own mother and I always love hearing the Scriptures about her this time of year. Reprinted with permission from CatholicSistas.com. For most of my years […]

Book Review: <em>Our Lady, Undoer of Knots: A Living Novena</em>
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Book Review: Our Lady, Undoer of Knots: A Living Novena

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On October 12, 2013, “Pope Francis revealed to the world his special devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary under the title Our Lady, Undoer of Knots. . . He spoke of Mary as the ‘new Eve’ who unties the knot of Eve’s disobedience.” In May 2014, Marge Fenelon traveled to the Holy Land with the […]

O Me of Little Faith
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O Me of Little Faith

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I guess you never know how little faith you have, until it is tested. Faith never grows, unless it is tested. I have found it to be a vicious lifelong cycle. I think I have faith, it gets tested, and I realize how little faith I have after all. I have been praying for something […]

All Saints Icon (detail)
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Is Praying to the Saints Idolatrous?

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Praying to the Saints is the opposite of idolatry.

All Saints Icon (detail)
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Does Scripture Teach Us to Pray for the Departed, and to Pray to the Saints?

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Answer: Yes.

All Saints Icon (detail)
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Three Things You’re Probably Getting Wrong About Praying to the Saints

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The Saints in Heaven are living witnesses and members of the Church.

The Saint Knows: God is All You Need
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The Saint Knows: God is All You Need

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My mind has been calmed by, among other things, a bookmark and a simple prayer. I’m writing these thoughts late in the evening Thursday, October 15. For the Catholic Church, this has been the Feast Day of St. Teresa of Avila. Among those in the Discalced Carmelite order – be they priests/friars, nuns or lay […]

Fearing the Silence
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Fearing the Silence

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Why do we fear coming to God? Why does turning to God come only once we have no where else to turn in our trials? Rather than God being first, we turn instead to friends, family, spouses, culture, society, and only when other sources are exhausted do we turn to Christ in prayer. Obviously, these […]

<em>Word by Word: Slowing Down with the Hail Mary</em>
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Word by Word: Slowing Down with the Hail Mary

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The Hail Mary is such a beautiful prayer in honor of our Blessed Mother, one every Catholic knows. Sarah Reinhard, a convert to the faith, describes the Hail Mary as her “blankie prayer . . . Just as my children cling to their worn-soft, faded blankies, so I cling to my Blessed Mother’s skirt through […]

Our Imperfect Family Rosary
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Our Imperfect Family Rosary

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When I was growing up, my immature self believed that the family rosary was something that had to be endured. Through no fault of my parents, the nightly ritual was anything but idyllic. My siblings and I were called into our parents’ bedroom where we knelt facing the crucifix.  My older brother and I would […]

The Simple Approach is Best
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The Simple Approach is Best

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Every month, as part of our formation with the Secular Carmelites order in St. Louis, the formation director gives my group a reading assignment and asks that we each write a two or three page reflection. The September assignment was Part Four of the Catechism of the Catholic Church – a compendium of all my […]

Praying Through Divorce - And After: How the Rosary is Saving My Soul
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Praying Through Divorce – And After: How the Rosary is Saving My Soul

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How do you pray when you are angry? How can you pray for those who oppose you? When I can’t find my own words, the traditional prayers of our Catholic faith can help. When I was going through my divorce, I had a very difficult time praying. I wasn’t sure of the words to use. […]

Book Review: <em>Pray with Me: 7 Simple Ways to Pray with Your Children</em>
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Book Review: Pray with Me: 7 Simple Ways to Pray with Your Children

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Pray with Me: Seven Simple Ways to Pray with Your Children (Ave Maria Press, 2015) is a great gift to Catholic parents everywhere. Grace Mazza Urbanski, the director of Children’s Ministry for the Apostleship of Prayer in the United States, has degrees in English and Theology, and is also the mother of five children. She […]

True Strength: Fully Rely on God
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True Strength: Fully Rely on God

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Like many first-born children, I’m a good rules-follower. Unless I suspect danger to my physical or spiritual well-being, I will do what I’m told by people who love me or the people who somehow make or enforce the rules. So I always have been a pretty good “kneeler” in church. By that, I mean that […]

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