New Year’s Daydreaming

What if instead of starting with New Year’s resolutions, we began with New Year’s daydreaming? January is a time when I eagerly peruse the newly arrived seed catalogues for ideas for springtime plantings. Where I live in the Northeast, the ground is cold and it’s still a long ways off to seed planting in spring. Under the huddle of a warm blanket, my imaginary garden is filled with bright dahlias, plentiful peonies, dramatic roses, and […]

Yearly Check-In for Couples

My years of being immersed in Ignatian spirituality have taught me the importance of being intentional—to be dedicated to my prayer life, to be dedicated to discernment, and to live purposefully. It is this idea of intentionality that I offer to all couples this new year as we naturally start setting our sights on goals, resolutions, and dreams. Instead of picking the first thing that comes to mind for our New Year’s resolutions, consider a […]

At the Turning of the Year

“Now bless thyself: thou met’st with things dying, I with things newborn.” —William Shakespeare, The Winter’s Tale With every new beginning, we look back over “things dying.” We look forward to “things newborn” and we hear those first three words, ringing out an invitation to us to bless ourselves, and allow ourselves to be blessed. Can we believe that God blesses all that is past? All of the last dying year? The projects, the relationships, […]

What Will Be Your Focus in the New Year?

Do you make New Year’s resolutions? Two common ones involve getting in shape or making a commitment to deepen one’s prayer life. Former catechetical leader Paul Gallagher explains how one led to the other for him in the article “How the Spiritual Exercises Rebooted My Health.” He writes: St. Ignatius reminds us in the Spiritual Exercises that we need to detach ourselves from those things that may have taken on addictive qualities in our lives. […]

Freedom for the New Year

A new year usually means a fresh plan. It means another try at the life we want to live. It means opening up to possibilities—to forward movement, to adjusting old ways to work better. A new year reminds us that the Holy Spirit is always moving, working among us, and leading us to the next good step. However, we cannot respond fully to such guidance and holy inspiration until we are free to do so. […]

Faced with What We Lack

With the end of each year I typically find myself in a state of hopefulness for the next year. I want to make resolutions like eating healthier, exercising, and praying more. But I also find that my hopefulness comes with a lament about some lack in the past year: I failed to make healthy choices; I was over-stressed with work; I got lazy with prayer and exercise. That lament is coated with a layer of […]

A Gratitude Resolution

When I was a girl, I was a Girl Scout. Thankfully, we had an active troop leader who took us on all kinds of outdoor excursions, from camping and hiking to ice tobogganing, in all kinds of weather. Recently I thought of a song that we sometimes sang as Scouts, the “Johnny Appleseed Song.” It went: “The Lord is good to me, and so I thank the Lord, for giving me the things I need, the […]

How to Enter the New Year

If you’re reading this, you lived to see the new year. This is no small matter! Your life makes a difference in the universe, whether or not you embrace your God-given power. May this prayer accompany your initial steps into the future. God of all time, help us enter the New Year quietly, thoughtful of who we are to ourselves and to others, mindful that our steps make an impact and our words carry power. […]

Best of the Year

Happy New Year! Before we jump into the new year of dotMagis posts, let’s take some time today to look back at the year ended. Enjoy some of the most popular posts from 2015. The Power of Silent Prayer My Mother’s Suscipe The Gift of the Ordinary Reimagining the Ignatian Examen Flip Book: Naming the Grace Living “Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam” Did you have a favorite post this year? What do you want to see […]

Examen Prayer for the Year

As we transition into the new year, let’s try an Examen prayer of our previous year. It’s really pretty simple: the Examen helps us reflect on a past period of time—usually we reflect prayerfully over the previous day or the previous few hours. But I believe we can apply these principles to the past calendar year as well. Step One: Become aware of God’s presence. One way of doing this is to ask the Holy […]

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