Finding Space for Play and Wonder

In Plato’s dialogue Theaetetus, Socrates says, “All philosophy begins in wonder” (155d). I recently thought of this in the midst of a discussion of Jesus’ idea that one must be a child to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven (Matthew 18:3). Children love to ask “why” questions. Why are there clouds in the sky? Why do birds sing? Why do all the flowers not bloom at the same time? Some questioning is about a desire […]

An Ignatian Pilgrimage Week #3: Preparation for a Life’s Vocation

Ignatius Loyola went through a conversion experience while he was recuperating from battle wounds. However, the transformation was not over. In fact, the most critical months were ahead of him—months that would prepare him for the life to which God was calling him. After Ignatius laid down his sword before Our Lady of Montserrat, he traveled down the mountain to Manresa. There, a woman named Inez Pascual, who would remain a friend throughout his life, […]

How to Get Unstuck

I believe that one of the biggest obstacles to a person living her values is the ease at which we get stuck on any given day. And it’s rarely the big events that hold us back but the smaller, relentless thoughts, attitudes, and fears that show up all the time. When I encounter a big problem, such as a job change or a death in the family, I’m on high alert for whatever opposes God’s […]

The Devil in a Piece of Pie

Waiting for a friend at a local coffee shop, I used my smartphone to read a portion of the first letter of John. God took the initiative to sit with me in that moment. My heart was deeply at peace. I was aware of a presence beyond myself. I was warmed by God loving me. I breathed deeply, looked out the window at freshly mown grass and marveled. I was glad my friend was late. […]

An Ignatian Pilgrimage Week #2: The Injury That Changed Everything

Ignatius Loyola became a soldier, and in 1521 he found himself and his small group of fellow warriors defending the fortress of Pamplona against the French. They were seriously outnumbered, and a more prudent—and less zealous—leader might have negotiated a surrender, but Ignatius was not the type to do anything halfway. They were roundly defeated by the French, and during the battle a cannonball ripped through Ignatius’s legs, leaving a mangled mess. Because Ignatius was […]

Learning from Our Elders as Mentors

In her post, “Five Tips for Beating Loneliness from St. Ignatius,” Rebecca Ruiz quotes Mark Thibodeaux, SJ, on the need for “good mentors, good companions, and a strong link to the church.” A mentor may well be someone from an older generation. At the 2018 Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, Loyola Press asked people about Pope Francis’s message to honor the wisdom and lives of the older generations. One of the questions was, “What is […]

The Grace of Autumn

Autumn Leaves Summer’s end cathedral windows paint pale canvas, dapple our shadows with sight, for colors pieced and patched quilt earth to sky; precious colors once hidden within, made plain by grace, grace us. Fall’s Last Leaves Wild wind drives them, shakes loose last grips sending them hurtling heading who knows where when they catch, to gently find their rest. How like these fall’s last leaves are we, when struggle with wildwind Spirit or Fear […]

An Ignatian Pilgrimage Week #1: The Place Where a Person Begins

As you probably know, Loyola Press, the host of this blog, is a ministry of the Society of Jesus, also known as the Jesuits. And this society is the legacy of St. Ignatius Loyola, who formed it 500 years ago with a few companions who, with him, wanted to help souls and change the world. Over the next few weeks, we will follow Ignatius’s life story and use key moments in it to prompt reflection […]

Listening for God in Nature

My love of nature began when I was a young child nurtured through the witness of my parents’ respect and awe of creation in our own backyard. Avid gardeners, they spent their free time designing and creating beautiful gardens, flowerbeds, and sanctuary nature nooks in our backyard that magnified the natural beauty of the Louisiana landscape. Their craft of cultivating the soil brought the magnificence of creation close up to my eyes as a child. […]

Two Prayers

All These Things Dear Lord, help me to remember that you gave me life. Thank you for the gift of life. Teach me to slow down, to be still and enjoy the pleasures created for me. To be aware of the beauty that surrounds me: the marvel of mountains, the calmness of lakes, the fragility of a flower petal. I need to remember that all these things come from you. Consciousness Help me, Lord, become […]

1 2 3 229