About Andy Otto
Andy Otto is an Ignatian blogger and spiritual director. He currently works in adult faith formation and retreat direction at a Jesuit parish and retreat center in Atlanta, GA, where he lives with his wife and daughter. Andy is the author of God Moments and holds a master’s degree in theology and ministry from Boston College.

Praying with Art

Some new age philosophies say that the five senses are the tip of the iceberg and that there are deeper realities beyond our bodily senses. I think St. Ignatius would agree. Indeed, he stresses the importance of the physical senses and feelings—gifts God has given us—in tapping more deeply into our understanding of God and those deeper realities ourselves. And while Ignatian prayer is best known as the prayer of the interior imagination, of the […]

Too Soon to Listen to Christmas Music?

I have to admit that I’ve slowly been working Christmas music into my music listening in the last couple of weeks. Every year I hear the same complaint that it’s too soon to be listening to Christmas music, that I should wait until at least after Thanksgiving. “Don’t get ahead of yourself,” people tell me. It’s not that I’m trying to get to Christmas sooner or resist living in the moment. I embrace the Halloween […]

God in the Messiness

The other Sunday I had the pleasure of witnessing a Baptism at Mass. It’s one of my favorite sacraments, because it joyfully welcomes a new member into our Christian community. This Baptism, however, did not seem like the most sacred moment. The baby, about a year and a half old, was crying and squirming. She wouldn’t let her parents and godparents make the Sign of the Cross on her forehead. She barely let the priest […]

The Forgotten Painting

I made a visit home to my parents a couple weeks ago, and as I was sitting in the living room I noticed a framed abstract print on one of the walls. It had been there for my entire life as my parents have lived in the same home for nearly 35 years. The picture’s focus is a medium-sized green rectangle surrounded by splashes of other colors: yellows, browns, blues, and oranges. Around the print […]

Removing Our Blinders

I drive pretty much the same route to work each morning. This can mean mentally shifting into autopilot and getting to work without much thought about the drive. We often do things with narrow vision, in our routine, without really “seeing” what’s going on around us. Routine can make us into robots, and we don’t always recognize this. Robots don’t know they’re robots, after all. But God has no desire for us to go about […]

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