Sign Up for our Free Daily Email Updates

Marriage, Prayer and the Cross (Part III of III)


In our last post we considered the power of God’s love as the ground of married love.   In this post, we will ponder the divine love which looks on marriage with resurrected eyes, and delve deeper into the kind of prayer faithful marriage requires. Resurrected Eyes.  The Gospels invite us to contemplate all marriage, even difficult and failed marriages, with resurrected eyes.  This is a perspective... Read More

Theology and Contemplative Prayer


Contemplation needs scientific theology and theologians need contemplation.  Historically, contemplatives who have presumed otherwise unwittingly submitted themselves and those they influenced to all kinds of demeaning irrationality.   At the same time, whenever theologians believe they can conduct their investigations without prayer, their body of scholarship becomes less capable of building up... Read More

CSD Book Club – Announcing our Next Book – 33 Days to Morning Glory

April 11, 2013 by  
Filed under Book Club, Vicki Burbach

33 Days to Morning Glory copy

33 Days to Morning Glory by Father Michael Gaitley, MIC A few weeks ago, I asked for recommendations on upcoming books.  If you recall, I suggested we read a book in honor of our Blessed Mother in the month of May.  Several of you highly recommended 33 Days to Morning Glory by Father Michael Gaitley.  So be it!  Having read and enjoyed his book Consoling the Heart of Jesus, I was excited to hear... Read More

Finding the Splendor of Mercy in the Shadow of Humdrum Days

faustina poland_St.-Faustina-II copy

“Oh humdrum days, filled with darkness, I look upon you with a solemn and festive eye.” (Saint Faustina Kowalska, Diary, #1373) Saint Faustina Kowalska wrote these words in 1937 at the brink of falling into a very serious illness from which she would never recover.  She could not have known that this experience of darkness was only the beginning of many difficult days for herself, her... Read More

An Answer to a Question: What is Contemplation?

Teresa of Avila 22 copy

Recently, Dan received an interesting question and after we talked about it, I asked whether I might respond.  Here is the question: “Is the terminology for prayer different from Ignatian to that of Carmelite spirituality? I’m a Secular Carmelite and I just went on an Ignatian retreat. My understanding of contemplation was that it was a complete gift with no activity on our part. However,... Read More

The Glory of Christ Crucified

francis2 copy

The Cross of Christ brings His glorious grace into the focus of contemplation.  It is a difficult mystery to dwell on.  The heart sometimes finds itself weary and sometimes even too discouraged to fix its gaze on the agony of the Lord.  This is where frequent confession and humble examination of conscience can help the practice of mental prayer – which is a humbled gaze of the heart on the... Read More

Charity’s Infinite Overflowing Flood in the Midst of Trial

elizabeth of the trinity copy

Blessed Elisabeth of the Trinity (1880 – 1906), a contemporary of St. Therese of Lisieux, is a Carmelite mystic from Dijon, France.   Her profound theological reflections are given in a tumultuous time, one not unlike our own.  The French government had begun to attack religious freedom with the intention of evicting religious orders and confiscating their properties.   The local bishop acquiesced... Read More

CSD Book Club – Imitation of Christ (Week 10 of 10)

February 26, 2013 by  
Filed under Book Club, Vicki Burbach

good portion picture1

Has God “Hugged” You Lately? You must seek the grace of devotion with perseverance, ask for it with earnestness, await it with patient confidence, receive it with thankfulness, retain it with humility, and use it with great care. But, while you await its coming, entrust to God the time and manner of this heavenly gift. When you feel little or no devotion within you, you should especially... Read More

Must I be of special status to receive the gift of contemplation?

September 16, 2012 by  
Filed under Contemplation, Dan Burke, Prayer

Adriaen_Ysenbrandt_(Netherlandish,_active_1510_-_1551)_-_The_Mass_of_Saint_Gregory_the_Great_-_Google_Art_Project Wikimedia Commons copy

Q: Dear St. Gregory, some have indicated that only cloistered religious or other religious can receive the gift of infused contemplation. Is this true? Who can and does receive the gift of contemplation? Dear Friend, it is not the case that the gift of contemplation is given to the highest and not given to the lowest; but often the highest and often the most lowly, and very often those who have left... Read More

How does a person learn to love God? – Part II of II

July 2, 2012 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Prayer, Virtue

Q: Dear Father John, If contemplative prayer is seeking Him whom my soul loves, what does one do to learn how to love God? I see this as a huge gap in the development of Catholic life and Catholic spirituality among the laity. We teach people how to worship, how to pray, what is right and wrong, but we never teach people – young or old – how to love the God we cannot see and touch and... Read More

Next Page »