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To Clean Or Not to Clean

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Yes, it is the time of year that we are faced with the grim reality of spring cleaning. The boxes that haven’t been touched in years need to be opened, the clothes that are no longer in fashion need to be donated, and the never-ending cleaning list needs to be completed. Unless you go against the grain and find great satisfaction in organization and cleanliness and in the whole process of getting... Read More

What is the difference between confession and spiritual direction?

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Q: Dear Father John, what is the difference between confession and spiritual direction? A: Confession and spiritual direction are like partially overlapping circles: they share some common characteristics, but their centers, their essences, are distinct. The Distinction of Confession The essence of confession is the sacramental grace that Christ gives to our soul through the ministry of his priest.... Read More

Envy: The No Win Sin (Part II of II)

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In our previous post on envy, we looked at what envy is and how it manifests in our lives.  Today, we will examine the difference between envy and jealousy and talk about getting some prayer and perspective on this issue. Jealousy and Envy There is a difference between jealousy and envy. They are often used in the same way, but are two different things.  Jealousy is the feeling that someone has something... Read More

How Do the Two Become One?

February 26, 2014 by  
Filed under Marriage Spirituality, The Alexanders

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Editor’s Note:  Today, we are pleased to introduce Greg and Julie Alexander.  Greg and Julie are co-founders and co-directors of The Alexander House Apostolate, a Catholic, lay apostolate – based in San Antonio – dedicated to proclaiming the beauty, goodness and truth of God’s plan for marriage.  They’ve helped thousands of couples heal and restore their marriage relationships,... Read More

The Sweetest Heart of Jesus

February 14, 2014 by  
Filed under Donna Sue Berry, Featured, Poetry

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THE SWEETEST HEART OF JESUS From the corner of my church pew, Sometimes I feel alone, When I see the happy couples,  In love when I’m alone. + I hide behind my lacy veil, And duck my head to pray, ‘Please, Jesus, be my Valentine This sweetheart’s special day.’ + I look up past the altar rails, And see the Sacred Heart, His eyes full of affection and My tears begin to start. + His Mother stands... Read More

What can be done against temptation?

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Q. Father Fortea, what can be done against temptation? A.  We must immediately resist it with the help of God’s grace. A temptation is harmless if we resist and do not entertain it. From the moment we begin to dialogue with a particular temptation, though, considering the pros and cons of what it offers, our opposition to it begins to weaken, and it is far more difficult to resist succumbing to... Read More

Reincarnation and Human Dignity (Part II of III)

January 6, 2014 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek

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…a reader asks:  Q: Dear Father John, I know that the Church rejects the doctrine of reincarnation, but sometimes I think that reincarnation seems to be a much more merciful approach than just having one chance to live well and go to heaven or to live badly and go to hell. I mean, so many human beings have had to live in such miserable conditions throughout the thousands and thousands of years... Read More

Do You Struggle to be Gentle – with Yourself?

December 17, 2013 by  
Filed under Book Club, Vicki Burbach

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An Introduction to the Devout Life(Week 7 of 14) One of the forms in which we should practice gentleness regards ourselves, in never growing irritable with ourselves or our imperfections; for, although, in reason we must be vexed and angry with ourselves when we commit faults, yet we ought to guard against a bitter, fretful displeasure, or spiteful anger with ourselves.  Some make a great mistake... Read More

Mysticism – Navigating the Interior Life Spiritual Dictionary

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MYSTICISM: The supernatural state of soul in which God is known in a way that no human effort or exertion could ever succeed in producing. There is an immediate, personal experience of God that is truly extraordinary, not only in intensity and degree, but in kind.  It is always the result of a special, totally unmerited grace of God.  Christian mysticism differs essentially from the non-Christian... Read More

The Majesty of the Eucharist

December 3, 2013 by  
Filed under Book Club, Vicki Burbach

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An Introduction to the Devout Life (Week 5 of 14) If men of the world ask why you communicate so often, tell them that it is in order that you may learn to love God, that you may be purified from your imperfections, delivered from your perplexities, comforted in your sorrows, strengthened in your weakness.  Tell them that there are two classes of men who need frequent communion – those who... Read More

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