In a recent address to seminarians, Pope Francis highlighted three aspects of Ignatian style: friendship with the Lord, discernment, and cultivating the magis, or “more,” for the Kingdom of God. In speaking of discernment, the Pope said: Discernment is a choice of courage, contrary to the more comfortable and reductive ways of rigorism and of laxness, as I have repeated many times. To educate to discernment means, in fact, to flee from the temptation to […]
There’s much to appreciate in the story of the disciples on the way to Emmaus, says Michael Sparough, SJ. For one: It’s in looking back on the experience that they realize just how impactful it’s been. I think it’s that insight that encouraged St. Ignatius Loyola to teach his followers the importance of a daily Examen. It’s in looking back and sifting and sorting through the events and the feelings of our day that we […]
John Carroll University, in Cleveland, Ohio, will host the 2017 World Union of Jesuit Alumni (WUJA) Congress this summer. The event brings together Jesuit alumni and friends to explore the theme “Uniting Our Jesuit Frontiers: To Know God, To Love God, To Serve God.” The website for WUJA Congress states: “While we gather as Jesuit alumni and friends, we will find God within and among each other. And together, we will discern how to promote […]
The title of a recent Harvard Business Review article says much: “The Busier You Are, the More You Need Quiet Time.” While this is hardly a new idea, it’s one that seems to need repeating in our tech-driven, overscheduled age. When we’re constantly fixated on the verbal agenda—what to say next, what to write next, what to tweet next—it’s tough to make room for truly different perspectives or radically new ideas. It’s hard to drop […]
Spiritual directors William A. Barry, SJ, and Bernadette Miles discuss Ignatian spirituality, understandings of Jesus, and spiritual direction in this nine-minute video from Spiritual Directors International. Barry is the author of multiple books on Ignatian spirituality, including A Friendship Like No Other and Changed Heart, Changed World.
Howard Gray, SJ, explains why much of the prayer in the Spiritual Exercises is repetition—multiple meditations on the same subjects or Scripture passages. The repetitions are efforts to engage mystery, to center on the depth of riches within revelation, and to discover how God specifically invites this particular man or woman to find the meaning of a gospel event for him or her. In other words, the aim of Ignatian repetition is to personalize prayer. […]
We’ve been given this insane gift of life. We’re living in the midst of the Resurrection. And all day, all night, still our hearts ask, Where is God? Early in my sobriety I began to realize that God was the things, or in or behind the things, or had created the things, that I’d loved my whole life. Bach cantatas, all flowers, all birds. The man or woman who suffered and who didn’t complain and […]
Becky Eldredge, dotMagis blogger and author of Busy Lives & Restless Souls, walks us through the steps of the Examen in this four-minute video. As Eldredge explains it, the steps are: Ask for the Holy Spirit’s help. Be thankful. Notice God’s presence. Notice the lack of God’s presence. Look to the future. For a peek into why Eldredge loves praying the Examen, watch her conversation with Paul Brian Campbell, SJ, here.
In this Easter season, Christ has risen in our churches, homes, communities, and workplaces. All of creation is illuminated by the new dawn brightening behind the Risen Lord, bringing his triumph into our lives. Please enjoy this imaginative prayer exercise for Easter based on Piero della Francesca’s 15th-century fresco of The Resurrection. Blessings on you, your family, and your faith community during this Easter season.
As Jesus responds to his sorrow, he is expressing to us the best of what it means to be human. There are no miracles here. No sudden healings. No casting out of demons. No parables. Someone coming to the story of Jesus’ Passion for the first time, not knowing anything else of the Gospels, would think that this is just an ordinary person, someone who experienced loneliness, heartache, pain, exhaustion, and ultimately death. He’s no […]