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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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Why Didn’t You Do It Ages Ago?

Why Didn’t You Do It Ages Ago?

In a letter to his friend Malcolm, C.S. Lewis writes: “Last week, while at prayer, I suddenly discovered—or felt as if I did—that I had really forgiven someone I have been trying to forgive for over thirty years. Trying, and praying that I might. When the thing actually happened, sudden as the longed-for cessation of one’s neighbor’s radio, my feeling was—But it’s so easy. Why didn’t you do it ages ago?” Why didn’t you do it ages a...
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God, How do I Know This is You?

God, How do I Know This is You?

I was in my last year of college when I decided to enter the convent. As I told my friends, who were also in their early twenties, about how I felt that God was calling me, many of them had the same response: “But how do you know that it’s God calling you?”This is a question that so many of us have. We want to do God’s will, we want to hear his voice, but we don’t even know what we’re listening for. And it doesn’t have an easy answer. In fact, I still as...
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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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Four Scripture Passages for Moms Worried About Their Kids

Four Scripture Passages for Moms Worried About Their Kids

It seems children never reach an age where we can stop worrying about them. We go from midnight fears as babies sleep, to cuts and bruises as kids play, to first boyfriend/girlfriend woes, to… well, you get the picture. My stepchildren are both in their twenties and there isn’t a day I don’t have some anxiety over the particulars of their lives, their safety, their future. We strive to be the best parents we can be, but in the small hours of the morning we wonder if we’r...
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More About Angels!

More About Angels!

You might not have thought much about angels, or your guardian angel, or the angels in scripture. Now’s your chance!In Angels: Help From on High, Sr Marianne Lorraine Trouvé, FSP, writes, “Angels have gotten some bad press. Artists often depict them as chubby babies with wings, flying lazily around clouds dotting a blue sky. But who would ever turn to such creatures for protection or help? Wouldn’t that be like asking a two-year-old to balance your checkbook or chan...
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The Angels: Our Personal Tour Guides on Our Pilgrimage to Heaven

The Angels: Our Personal Tour Guides on Our Pilgrimage to Heaven

I learned the prayer to my guardian angel for the first time when I was five years old. It is a popular prayer, so you may have heard of it.Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God’s love entrusts me here. Ever this day, be at my side to light and guard, to rule and guide. AmenTo this day, when I think of this prayer, I automatically hear a child’s voice praying it. When I picture the guardian angels, I imagine the famous image of an angel guiding two children safely over a bridge...
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A Walk in the Garden with Mary

A Walk in the Garden with Mary

Mary’s love and presence are so intrinsic to the Incarnation! Our Mother shows herself to us in many different ways: she’s the Queen of Heaven, she’s a simple maiden; she’s the Virgin of Guadeloupe, Our Lady of Lourdes, the Star of the Sea… wherever we are in our journey, wherever we happen to be when we need her, she is exactly where we are.We light candles, we pray, we read books about her, we think about her, but none of those things engage all the senses. Like ...
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Finding Hope in August

Finding Hope in August

August is here. And it feels in so many ways that the heat exacerbates our responses to difficulties and challenges. Tempers are flaring more (just drive anywhere for more than five minutes and you’re likely to encounter everything from mild rudeness to full-blown road rage). The fears we have for our planet are running deeper even as we run out of time to fix them. We’re suddenly aware that the summer is finite, to be counted in remaining weeks rather than months.Looking at the cale...
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Is God talking to me?

Is God talking to me?

Moses heard God speak to him from a burning bush. Catherine of Siena had ecstatic visions of Jesus. Anne Catherine Emmerich experienced the stigmata. Margaret Mary Alacoque was shown the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The list of people—some saints, some not—who have seen, heard, or experienced God first-hand while still on earth can go on and on. These were dramatic encounters that left no doubt in the person’s mind that God was speaking directly to them.My name is not on that list. N...
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