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 How Meditation on Death Can Change Your Life

How Meditation on Death Can Change Your Life

Several years after joining the convent, I decided to take up the practice of regular meditation on death. As a reminder to meditate on my death, I acquired a small ceramic skull for my desk. I was inspired by Blessed James Alberione, the founder of my religious order, the Daughters of Saint Paul. He kept a skull on his desk as a memento mori to remind him of his death. Every day I would simply look at the skull on my desk and remember that death could come at any time. Then I would bring to pra...
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After Suicide — There's hope for them and for you

After Suicide — There's hope for them and for you

Do those who take their own lives automatically lose their salvation? How can we help those who have lost a loved one to suicide? Addressing the hard issue of suicide simply and pastorally, Fr. Chris Alar, MIC, draws from the teaching of the Church, the message of Divine Mercy, and his own experience of losing his grandmother to suicide in order to offer readers two key forms of hope. With co-author Jason Lewis, MIC, Fr. Chris reveals that there's hope for the salvation of those who've d...
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Dressing Up to Learn About Ourselves: How Halloween Can Prepare Kids for All Saints Day

Dressing Up to Learn About Ourselves: How Halloween Can Prepare Kids for All Saints Day

Halloween!It’s a thrilling night for kids. It’s a time when everyone is allowed to dream big and dress up as someone they are not. And yes… it is also a time for candy. What we often don’t realize, though, is that as we help our kids choose who they want to be for Halloween, we are opening opportunities for them to learn about who they want to be in real life.When I was young, I had a friend whose mom would help her dress as a different saint each year. To...
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After Suicide - Book Signing with Fr. Chris Alar, MIC

After Suicide - Book Signing with Fr. Chris Alar, MIC

Can't make it to the book signing, but interested in the book? For more information call 312-346-4228 Purchase After Suicide online here
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How to Help Kids Pray with Scripture

How to Help Kids Pray with Scripture

It's important to remember that there are many ways to pray. Memorizing and praying the Lord's Prayer, the Hail Mary, or any other beloved prayers are wonderful ways to pray, but so are praying with Scripture and even just thinking about God. The purpose of prayer is continuing and strengthening our relationship with God. Just like we can share with a close friend all the ups and downs of life, we can do that with God and we should teach our children to do the same. I love telling childr...
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A Mother's Journey

A Mother's Journey

Maybe you’re a mom.Biological, adoptive, foster, spiritual, school-mom, hospital-mom, mother-figure… however your motherhood is expressed.Maybe you’re a mom.And maybe you remember taking your mom for granted.I know I did. I saw my mom work for me, care for me, fight for me, and love me every day. And sure, I was grateful, but I didn’t realize just how much it all cost her… or how much joy I brought her.And that’s the heart of a mother.We tend to think o...
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Pray It Through: How to Pray when It's Hard to Forgive

Pray It Through: How to Pray when It's Hard to Forgive

A graduate school classmate of mine was once a greengrocer in a small English village. If you wanted fresh fruits and vegetables, and you happened to live in that village, you had to visit him. The problem was, he was usually cranky and sometimes downright mean. One day, three of his regular customers—all older, retired women—decided to do something about his behavior. They didn’t chew him out, and they didn’t decide to go to the next village to buy their produce. Instead...
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Saint Monica: The Mother Who Never Gave Up

Saint Monica: The Mother Who Never Gave Up

The dignified woman opened the door and stiffly walked into the room at the seaside inn. As she looked at the drab, empty, ordinary room, she thought, “Nothing special about it.” It was simply supposed to be a stopover; it wasn’t supposed to be the place where her heart would be broken…again.She managed to hold in her tears until she closed the door behind her. Then, Monica collapsed on her knees beside the bed, burying her face in the cheap pillows and letting them abso...
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If you want to know how to meditate, this is for you

If you want to know how to meditate, this is for you

Praying the Word of God, meditating on the Scriptures, entering into the life of Jesus in the Gospels…. We are told how important it is to pray in this way so that we will mature in Christ, transformed in the Spirit.But when we sit down to meditate, we might discover we don’t what to do. That "how" is what Saint Ignatius Loyola learned and then taught to millions who followed him both to his followers when we was alive and those of us who have benefited from his guidance s...
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St Ignatius of Loyola: Master of Prayer

St Ignatius of Loyola: Master of Prayer

Once on a retreat I was finding prayer difficult. I felt dull, held back, resistant. I was praying with a passage from the Gospel of Mark, one of those simple passages about Jesus teaching and healing the crowds.As I was meditating on the Gospel passage, I imagined myself in the crowd. Suddenly Jesus approached me and took me by the hand. He started to walk with me so fast down the road that I could barely keep up. Just the two of us were on this lightning journey. I realized I couldn’t ke...
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