Category: Catholic Literature

Radical Transformation: Part III

Transformation in Christ by Dietrich Von Hildebrand: On Humility (Chapter 3: 149 – 188): Take a few minutes and consider your personal reaction to the word Humility or Humble.  In American culture it can be seen as a great asset or great weakness.  It is context dependent.  The American Psychological Association[i] and Forbes[ii] business magazine see great utility in the trait of humility.  It … Read More Radical Transformation: Part III

Radical Transformation: Part Two

Transformation In Christ, by Dietrich Von Hildebrand (Chapters 2 through 6): After chapter one on Readiness to Change Dietrich dives into house cleaning:  Contrition, Self-knowledge, True Consciousness, True Simplicity, and Recollection and Contemplation! It has been about a month for me to traverse this material and attempt to reapply principles and practices revealed within these pages.  It is not an easy process as most … Read More Radical Transformation: Part Two

Radical Transformation: Part One

Transformation In Christ by Dietrich Von Hildebrand (Chapter One: Readiness to Change) “Put off the old man who is corrupted according to the desire of error, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind:  and put on the new man, who according to God is created in justice and holiness of truth.” (Eph. 4: 22-24) Dam.  I am stumped by Dietrich Hildebrand’s first … Read More Radical Transformation: Part One

Jewels of Confession (Personal Reflection)

I am in my mind’s eye an amateur, a novice, a man sentenced to be an apprentice for life.  It is the epitome of grandiosity to believe anything else.  There are just too many barriers for me to join the ranks of those considered by men to be held as examples of a devout man, much less than to even consider judgement by God’s … Read More Jewels of Confession (Personal Reflection)

the maid a novel of Joan of Arc by Kimberly Cutter

What would it be like to hear the voice of God or his emissaries?   Not an intuitive prayerful dialogue and raised spiritual consciousness but an actual thundering voice or even an apparition.   What lengths would you go to experience this grace if you could?  What lengths would you go to deny ever having had such an experience?  The Hollywood portrait above is inspiring.  But … Read More the maid a novel of Joan of Arc by Kimberly Cutter

Praying the Psalms, Merton, Thomas[i]

A tight rope walk with Thomas Merton on one side of the chasm and King David (and several lesser known authors) on the other still leaves me struggling with the wisdom of the Psalms.  Our busy lives present many valleys to ponder.  Thomas Merton short book explores how the Psalms can be used in prayer to traverse chasms in life. The barriers for me … Read More Praying the Psalms, Merton, Thomas[i]

The Art of Loving God by Francis de Sales

“Discover the secrets to growing holier through the simple things in life work, play, and rest. Learn to avoid the distractions that trouble and weary your soul and you’ll soon be able to focus your energy simply on loving God!”[i] I encountered this little book in two visits to an adoration chapel spanning the last two weeks.   The pursuit of God’s presence is really … Read More The Art of Loving God by Francis de Sales

Becoming Who You Are:  Insights on the True Self from Thomas Merton and Other Saints by Martin SJ, James

“Find your own Calcutta.”

No Man is an Island by Thomas Merton

If only we could be an Island onto ourselves the realities of our personal, financial, and socio-political situation would be but just a minor annoyance no greater than an industrious fly begging for our attention.  We could be lost in the solitude of spirituality – one with God in a romantic monastery living a simple life – provided physical and spiritual sustenance by God’s … Read More No Man is an Island by Thomas Merton

Mercy? Self-Compassion?

“And what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”  Micah 6:8 A simple calling that many of us aspire to practice in all our daily affairs.  Micah is ancient, from the Old Testament, 686 B.C., telling us the importance of justice, kindness, and humility. We may secretly believe we are doing … Read More Mercy? Self-Compassion?

Is your God Dead by George Yancy[i]

“Open your eyes and look within. Are you satisfied with the life you’re living?”[ii] On June 19, 2017 George Yancy challenged you via New York Times opinion piece to consider is your God Dead? What does it mean to believe in a “Living God?”  My belief is in a living God.  However, I cannot attest to having seen him in person, to have heard … Read More Is your God Dead by George Yancy[i]

Spiritual Direction and Meditation by Thomas Merton

Seeking a greater union with God through prayer and meditation I sought out the works of Thomas Merton.  This very tiny book, Spiritual Direction and Meditation, after much discourse and examination of the benefits of pray informed meditation, enough to provide a course of action and reassurance, takes aim at our human ego just after cresting the mid-way point of the book:  “Knowing at … Read More Spiritual Direction and Meditation by Thomas Merton

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