Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Charisms Don’t Make You a Saint

Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles? So, every sound tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears evil fruit. A sound tree cannot bear evil fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will know them by their fruits. (Mt 7:15-20)

So you will know them by their fruits. The fruits may not be the ones you think they are. Read more at:

Charisms Don’t Make You a Saint

Monday, June 27, 2011

Feast Day of Our Lady of Perpetual Help

Have you ever felt that you were being followed? That everywhere you turned, you saw someone that you recognized or thought you should know? That is how I feel about the Icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Help. It began soon after I was accepted as an aspirant in the Diaconal Formation Program in the Archdiocese of Atlanta. I was in my parish church during adoration and I was struggling about whether I should enter the program. As I was leaving I saw the icon on a side table and was attracted to its beauty. Over the past 4.5 years, She has been seen during important times in my spiritual journey. The most astounding was when we were in Rome, Italy. We were walking between St John Lateran and St Mary Major. During the walk, we saw a modest church. My wife and I decided to sneak in because we had learned over the years that beautiful things can be found in the most obscure places. And there She was; the original icon.

Seeing the icon gives me comfort. She is not only the mother of Christ but also our spiritual mother. She is there to pray for us and give us comfort. She shows us the way to true discipleship; She is our example. As she cared for her own son, she also cares for us. That act of love leads us to care for others.

Novena of Our Lady of Perpetual Help

Oh Mother of Perpetual Help, grant that I may ever invoke your powerful name, the protection of the living and the salvation of the dying. Purest Mary, let your name henceforth be ever on my lips. Delay not, Blessed Lady, to rescue me whenever I call on you. In my temptations, in my needs, I will never cease to call on you, ever repeating your sacred name, Mary, Mary. What a consolation, what sweetness, what confidence fills my soul when I utter your sacred name or even only think of you! I thank the Lord for having given you so sweet, so powerful, so lovely a name. But I will not be content with merely uttering your name. Let my love for you prompt me ever to hail you Mother of Perpetual Help. Mother of Perpetual Help, pray for me and grant me the favor I confidently ask of you.
(Then say three Hail Marys).

Monday, June 20, 2011

Favorite Places

Cumberland Island, Georgia

Living Space » Archive » The Irish Martyrs

Today is the feast day of the Irish Martyrs and commemorates the martyrdom of the Irish who died for their faith in the British Isles from 1537 to 1714. You can get a lot of details at:

Living Space » Archive » The Irish Martyrs

It is not a story we hear about very often.


The Diaconate

A Letter on the Permanent Diaconate

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Trinity Sunday and Loss of a Good Priest

The Trinity is one of those mysteries of God that is beyond comprehension; lately, I have thought about it from the perspective of community and how we can learn from it. Our being, our understanding of ourselves is so much about community that we overlook the significance of it. It, in many ways, is who we are....


I just learned about the death of a great priest. His name was Fr James Caffery, MS and he was the pastor of my parish for many years. He was a mentor, adviser, and friend. He was the first person I spoke to about the diaconate. He was very supportive but also very wise (i.e. he said to keep that thought in my mind but not now; you have a family to raise). I think the Archbishop would have agreed. We lost touch over the last few years because of Alzheimer's disease.

Fr Caf, may you rest in Gods Peace.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Marriage and the New Religion | The Integrated Catholic Life

“We’re pregnant with another girl”, Levin announced with a grin.

“That’s great, I bet you and your wife are excited”, I responded, anticipating a family comment.

“Well, I’m not married, we just live together.”

Read More at:

Marriage and the New Religion | The Integrated Catholic Life

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

From Ascension to Pentecost

The Easter season is about to come to an end. For many of my protestant friends and family, they may be surprised that we are still celebrating the resurrection of Christ (and one of the reasons I love this Church). We like to let our celebrations last; we savor every aspect of the reality.

I particularly like that way the Easter Season has such a symmetry. It begins with the Apostles waiting for a new beginning; the three days of the Triduum. The Man they had followed for the last few years was gone. Just days ago, they saw him enter Jerusalem with joy and fanfare. Now, their entire world was falling in around them. He had told them what would happen but they didn't truly understand it. They were waiting. They did not know what to do next. They were scared. But on Sunday morning, the tomb was empty and that evening He came to them. The glory of the resurrection was revealed.

They are now in a similar circumstance. They saw Him ascend into the heavens. He told them that He would send them an advocate, the Paraclete. Like the period between Jesus' death and resurrection, I think that again they were at a loss of what to do. What did He mean? Again the uncertainty crept in; they were alone again; and they waited.

I think this is a good time for us to do the same. We should take the time to sit and wait. A time to think back at our Easter Season and what it brought us. To think about how the Apostles must have been feeling, knowing that their human nature was trying to take over (i.e. maybe we should go back to Galilee and take up fishing again). And us, knowing that they needed to wait because something wonderful was about to happen.

We all go through periods of uncertainty. We all, in a sense, spend time wanting to take control of our lives rather than giving it up to His will.

What, in our lives, do we now need to wait for rather than act on now. Waiting may just lead to something extraordinary.