Evangelizing through the Catholic Arts

Saint Ignatius of Loyola’s Feast Day – A Soldier for Christ

Saint Ignatius of Loyola Today we celebrate the feast of Saint Ignatius of Loyola. Born in 1491, in Azpeitia, Spain, Ignatius grew up dreaming of becoming a knight in the Spanish army. With an affinity for the military, its structure and leadership, Ignatius followed through on his dream. However, in a battle against the French in 1521, Ignatius was struck by a cannon ball – between his legs! Ouch!

Saint Ignatius – Soldier for Christ

While recuperating, over an extended period, he grew restless. Therefore, to combat the boredom, the hospital staff brought him the only books they had available to read. One book was about Christ, and another about the saints. In reading these books, Ignatius recognized the obedience to Continue reading

Natural Law: What is It? What Role Does It Play?

Natural Law How is it that we innately always seem to know right from wrong, even when we freely choose to move in the direction of wrong? For example, how is it that I innately know that it is wrong to take a life of another? I don’t need to refer to the Fifth Commandment; nor do I need to have a civil law on the books to know that taking the life of another human being is just flat out wrong. The answer lies in God’s Natural Law, a law that is infused into the hearts of every man at birth.

Natural Law: What is it?

Natural law is the participation of man in the plan of God. It is the Continue reading

When the Fireworks are Over, Then What?

Fireworks Yesterday, in the United States, we celebrated Independence Day with an assortment of fireworks displays throughout the country. As with this type of celebration, the day after seems like quite a letdown, doesn’t it? The evening before was exciting, filled with color, splash and sound! Today, all is quiet and serene. We can draw a correlation between celebrating the Fourth of July and marriage. How so, you might ask?

Fireworks and Marriage

When we initially meet our spouse, it’s like fireworks are going off all the time. Life is filled with excitement. Everything around us seems to come to life. Then we settle into a relationship, with its ups and downs. Yet, the fire is still strong; so strong, that Continue reading

Rote Prayers: Do They Serve a Purpose?

Rote Prayers Here’s my confession: I have never been good at memorizing rote prayers, beyond the basics. My prayer life, historically, has been one of a free-flowing style, telling God what is on my mind. Within my prayer life, I seek His direction. Yet, I never said rote prayers beyond the Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be. That was, until one day, after having a serious conversation about prayer with a priest friend of mine.

The Value of Rote Prayers

Father Benjamin helped me to see the value of rote prayers, as well as their importance. When we can’t find the right words to communicate our feelings, rote prayers rescue us, and assist us in opening our hearts to the Lord. Continue reading

Summer: A Time for Introspection and Spiritual Growth

Summer Introspection As schools let out, the lazy days of summer are upon us. This is a great time for some reflection and introspection regarding your spiritual life. We’re about half-way through the year. As we embarked on 2017, many of us made New Year’s resolutions. So, how’s that coming along? If you are like me, you don’t even remember what those resolutions might have been! I certainly do not remember what I vowed to do, not do, or overcome.

My Own Introspection

So, I sit here on the precipice of summer, asking myself what I would like to accomplish with the second half of 2017. Here’s what I came up with:

  1. I would like to have a better relationship with Our Continue reading

Memorial Day: Remembering the Dead and The Family Left Behind

Memorial Day With today being Memorial Day, I thought I would use the power of my space to tell you about a fine young man who died serving his country in Vietnam. PFC Thomas Wayne Myers, born on March 9, 1943, was my next-door neighbor. I was just a child of 12 years old, on that warm Spring morning of May 27, 1969, when Tommy died at Dinh Tuong Province, Vietnam.

Memories

I remember being outside, playing by myself, when the Army car pulled up in front of the house, on Saturday, May 31st. It was Memorial Day weekend! Two men, dressed in uniforms, got out of the car and walked up the driveway to ring Mrs. Myers’ doorbell. I stood Continue reading

Novena to the Holy Spirit – Seeking Virtue

Novena to the Holy SpiritThe annual Novena to the Holy Spirit begins this coming Friday, May 26th and continues through to the day before Pentecost, June 3rd. In this Novena, we ask the Holy Spirit to grace us with seven gifts. Each one of theses gifts happen to be virtues as well:

  1. Awe (also known as Reverence) – We ask for a sovereign respect for God, as well as a filial submission to the Father.
  2. Piety – We ask for love and respect for those consecrated to God; including priests and religious, the Blessed Mother, the Saints, the Church, our parents, and our country and its rulers.
  3. Fortitude – We ask for the strengthening of our souls against natural fear. Continue reading

Pruning Bears Much Fruit!

Pruning Bears Much Fruit In today’s Gospel reading from John 15:1-8, we hear one of my favorite Gospel readings. We learn how Jesus is the vine and we are the branches. God the Father is the vinedresser, who cares for the vine and its branches. What beautiful imagery of a life-giving force! Yet, even vine branches require pruning and trimming to promote further growth. When we hear about the pruning of the vine in this Gospel passage, take note that we are the ones of whom Jesus references! As God prunes His vine branches, He removes those aspects of our lives that hinder further growth.

Pruning for Future Growth

For me, God prunes my prideful ways, so that I may have a humbler heart. Continue reading