SpiritualDirection.com / Catholic Spiritual Direction

Having a Rule of Life: 30 Days w/ Teresa of Avila: Day 20 reflections

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Having a Rule of Life 30 Days with Teresa of Avila Day 20 Reflections Divine Intimacy Radio   Listen to reflections on letters from St. Teresa of Avila found in Dan Burke’s book 30 Days with Teresa of Avila. In today’s show Dan and Melissa answer the questions: What is a “rule of life”? Why do you need one? How do you make one? Topics/Questions covered in the show: Motivation... Read More

What is the difference between confession and spiritual direction?

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Dear Father John, what is the difference between confession and spiritual direction? Confession and spiritual direction are like partially overlapping circles: they share some common characteristics, but their centers, their essences, are distinct. The Distinction of Confession The essence of confession is the sacramental grace that Christ gives to our soul through the ministry of his priest. When... Read More

Rule of Life (Program of Life) – Navigating the Interior Life Spiritual Dictionary

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Rule of Life (Program of Life) Navigating the Interior Life Spiritual Dictionary Rule of Life (Program of Life) – A specific and usually documented plan for living in accord with one’s state in life and baptismal commitments that includes principals, guidelines, and commitments that will guide each person to achieve sanctity, and in practical and concrete ways, love God and love their neighbor.... Read More

How does a person accept God’s mercy?

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Dear Father John, I am helping a woman in her spiritual growth (mainly through helping her come up with a program of life), and something came up that I wanted to ask you about. She has shared with me some of what she regrets, and some of what she is having a hard time forgiving herself for. Intellectually she knows that God forgives, but she hasn’t accepted His mercy into her heart. I am guessing... Read More

Navigating the New Year

December 26, 2012 by  
Filed under Dan Burke, Root Sin, Rule of Life/Program of Life

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Lay people often overlook a source of deep spirituality and safety. One of the spiritual secrets of those in the religious life is a kind of spiritual guardrail system that helps them to know the path of peace on a moment to moment basis. This wisdom-born approach has aided thousands of ordinary people to become saints and to experience the heights of union with the Lord in this life. One part of this... Read More

Should I relax Rule of Life during holidays? (II/II)

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Dear Father John, Is it right to relax one’s Rule during a holiday period (or a day off)? If so, what should we hang on to and what should we ‘shelve’? What about a priest with a fairly demanding Rule of Life? As you will have guessed, I am a priest and am unsure about my own practice. I also find that this question comes up among other clergy and among committed and faithful lay folk... Read More

Should I relax my “Rule of Life” during holidays? Part I of II

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 Dear Father John, Is it right to relax one’s Rule during a holiday period (or a day off)? If so, what should we hang on to and what should we ‘shelve’? What about a priest with a fairly demanding Rule of Life? As you will have guessed, I am a priest and am unsure about my own practice. I also find that this question comes up among other clergy and among committed and faithful lay folk... Read More

How can I identify my root sin?

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Dear Father John, I am not in spiritual direction right now, but I am trying to put together a program of life anyway. Can you give me some pointers about identifying my “root sin”? You are already on the right track. A program of life is worthless (well, almost worthless, at least) without having identified our root sin. Unless we understand the dynamism underlying our frequent faults and failings,... Read More

Spiritual direction: how much focus on prayer vs sin & virtue?

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Dear Father John, How much of a discussion in spiritual direction should focus on moral issues, such as habitual sin and possibly that of grave matter which may not necessarily be mortal sin? So much discussion here is only about how to pray well, making a program for life, finding a spiritual director and things of that nature. What about living life every day? It seems to me that talking to a spiritual... Read More

The fruits of my meditation are not clear – What should I do?

October 19, 2009 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Meditation, Prayer

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Dear Father John, I have a question about preparing for meditation. I have been deeply blessed by the insight you and have provided with respect to meditation recently. I wonder if what I am seeking as a fruit of meditation is too lofty. Why? Because it doesn’t change day to day and I don’t perceive that I am making much progress. Is it normal to seek the same fruit for weeks at a time or longer?... Read More

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