Did you ever catch yourself secretly wondering whether or not God really, really has our best interest at heart? It is so easy to slip into thinking that doing the will of God is automatically tantamount to a life of suffering and woe. Instead, Jesus came to bring us life – abundant life! As Pope Francis reminds us we are called to encounter and become messengers of the joy of the Gospel!
Paradoxically, however, we have to admit that the kingdom of God that Jesus preached and lived out in his own life does put us in the pathway of suffering and even conflict. Blessed are the poor, the meek, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness… (see Matthew 5:1-11)–these are not the values of the business-as-usual-world and we shouldn’t be surprised when we find opposition. In the face of this where do we find encouragement and confidence in following God’s loving plan for our lives?
Perhaps this is one of the reasons why Pope Francis is giving the Church – and the whole world – the gift of the canonization of John XXIII and John Paul II. Both of these men teach us with their lives and their words that a life of holiness is a life of deep confidence in God’s love for us.
As the editor for the Classic Wisdom Collection, I was delighted when two of my colleagues volunteered to prepare a book each for this series. Sr. Donna Giaimo compiled Secret to Happiness: Wisdom from John XXIII and Sr. Lorraine Trouvé worked on Be Not Afraid: Wisdom from John Paul II. Like the other titles in this series, Secret to Happiness and Be Not Afraid are short but substantial collections of writings about the spiritual life lived out in the real world. They both address overlapping issues of confidence, humility and trust in God. Let their words and their example inspire you!
Sr. Sean Mayer, FSPRead More
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Concert dates 2013:
St. Paul Catholic Church
Our Lady of Fatima Parish
Benefit Dinner & Concert
Staten Island, NY
Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist
Good Shepherd Catholic Church
St. Tarcisius church
St. Ann by the Sea Parish
Daughters of St. Paul Chapel
Jamaica Plain, MA
Afternoon Concert-Daughters of St. Paul Chapel
Jamaica Plain, MA
Evening Concert-Daughters of St. Paul Chapel
Jamaica Plain, MA
“The Lord is calling me ‘out to the mountain’ to devote more time to prayer and meditation, but this does not mean I’m abandoning the Church.” –Pope Benedict XVI, in his final Sunday Angelus address as Pope.
I remember the last World Youth Day led by Pope John Paul II in 2002, in Toronto, Canada. I was standing in the immense sea of young adults at the end of the final Mass. At the close of World Youth Day, it was customary for John Paul to announce where the next World Youth Day was being held by saying, “I will see you at the next World Youth Day in…” A wave of sadness swept over me when he didn’t say those words. He simply announced where it would be. Silently he told us that he would not be there.
I remember also the first World Youth Day led by Pope Benedict XVI almost 8 years ago in his native Germany, 2005. The eyes of the world were on the new Pontiff. Perhaps unconsciously we were wondering how he would “perform” after what we had experienced with the leadership of John Paul II. I remember almost getting the goose bumps as I watched on TV the Vigil held at Marienfield the night before the Final Mass. After exposing the Blessed Sacrament for adoration, Benedict slipped away quietly, leaving all eyes on Jesus in the Eucharist, gazing on the mystery of his self-giving and limitless love by which we have been filled with eternal joy. Read more >>Read More