SpiritualDirection.com / Catholic Spiritual Direction

This Present Paradise: St. Elizabeth of the Trinity

November 8, 2018 by  
Filed under Claire Dwyer, Elizabeth of the Trinity, Mysticism, Saints

Today, November 8, we celebrate the feast day of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity, a French Carmelite considered by Pope St. John Paul II to be one of the most influential mystics of his life. St. Elizabeth of the Trinity was born as Elizabeth Catez, “Sabeth” to her friends, in 1880.  She was a hot-tempered child with sometimes “furious eyes”  whose father died while she was young, forcing her mother to move... Read More

Are Action and Contemplation Mutually Exclusive?

Many believe that action and contemplation are mutually exclusive efforts. Some argue that a prayerful life is an escape from the difficult effort of loving service. Others argue that the apostolic life lacks a certain depth and devotion to the Lord. Yet the greatest mystics never saw a tension between apostolic service and contemplative prayer — for them, it would be impossible to have one without the other.  The deeper... Read More

Avila Institute Fall Courses

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Avila Institute Fall Courses    Contemplative Prayer and the Angelic Doctor (SSF 250)   Too often, our modern minds consider St. Thomas Aquinas to be something of a rigid and sterile academic. Nothing could be further from the truth. His piercing intellectual receptivity, his child-like purity, and his poetic intuition are just a few reasons the Church lifts him up as Her Common and Angelic Doctor. Studying the work... Read More

A Novena for Justice and Healing in the Church

Dear Friends, The Church is suffering. Victims are suffering. Faithful priests and Bishops are suffering. The laity are suffering. All of this suffering comes through sin, unbelief, and injustice. The answer to this crisis – the solution that every Catholic can participate in, that you can participate in, is to be a conduit of grace through prayer. God has ordained that His grace and healing come through the prayers of His... Read More

Prayer of St. Augustine in Aridity

“Lord, my God, You who are holy, look and see my affliction! Have pity on the child whom You have engendered in sorrow and do not consider my sins, lest you forget Your power over them. What father will not liberate his son? And what son has not been chastised by his father's compassionate rod? O Father and Lord, although I am a sinner, I am nonetheless Your child, because You have created and recreated me. Can a mother forget... Read More

Solemnity of the Nativity of Saint John the Baptist

June 24, 2018 by  
Filed under Augustine, Dan Burke, Liturgy of the Hours, Prayer, Solemnity

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Solemnity of the Nativity of Saint John the Baptist* The Church observes the birth of John as a hallowed event. We have no such commemoration for any other fathers; but it is significant that we celebrate the birthdays of John and Jesus. This day cannot be passed by. And even if my explanation does not match the dignity of the feast, you may still meditate on it with great depth and profit. John was born of a woman too old for... Read More

On the Love of the Three Divine Persons for Man

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On the Love of the Three Divine Persons for Man* Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity Sermon XXIX of St Alphonsus Liguori “Going, therefore, teach ye all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” (Matthew 28:19) St. Leo has said, that the nature of God is, by its essence, goodness itself. “Deus cujus natura bonitas.” Now, goodness naturally diffuses itself. “Bonum est... Read More

The Word was Made Flesh … and Dwelt Among Us

The Word was Made Flesh … and Dwelt Among Us * Then He summoned an archangel, Saint Gabriel: and when he came, Sent him forth to find a maiden, Mary was her name. Only through her consenting love Could the mystery be preferred That the Trinity in human Flesh might clothe the Word. Though the three Persons worked the wonder It only happened in the One. So was the Word made incarnation In Mary's womb, a son. So He who only... Read More

The Interior Castle: Saint Teresa’s Diamond

The Interior Castle: Saint Teresa's Diamond The De Beers Jewelry marketing slogan of “Diamonds are Forever” might have been a perfect catchphrase for Saint Teresa’s “Diamond”, better known to us as the Interior Castle. However, this company was not yet around in 1577 when she was ordered to write another book. “Forever” was a well-chosen word because of the properties and symbolism inherent in the diamond.... Read More

Love One Another: Retreat Guide on St. Therese’s Little Way of Charity

Love One Another: on St. Therese's Little Way of Charity Written by Fr. John Pietropaoli, LC and presented by Fr. John Bartunek, LC, ThD   Christ’s great commandment is that we love one another as he has loved us. Inasmuch as we live that out, we are Christians in name and in fact. But we encounter an obstacle: our own weakness and sinfulness. Luckily, God has given us the saints, friends who can guide us along the narrow... Read More

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