Faith Features

Wed

29

Mar

2017

“We Must Be Pilgrims”: Saint Francis Xavier and Discernment

 

 

by Libbie Steiner

 

 

On April 7, 1545, in Negapatam, India, the Jesuit Saint Francis Xavier wrote these words to Father Francisco Mansilhas: “May God our Lord grant us in time the gift to perceive his holy will. He wishes that we should always be ready to fulfill it whenever he manifests it to us and lets us feel it within our souls. To fare well in this life, we must be pilgrims ready to go wherever we can serve God our Lord the more” (The Letters and Instructions of Francis Xavier, translated by M. Joseph Costelloe, S.J.).

 

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Wed

29

Mar

2017

The Impracticality of Faith

 

by Laura McLaughlin

 

Naturalists will often try to “explain away” religion by reducing it to a more advanced form of the altruism also found amongst animals. They argue that groups of people who worked together instead of only existing in a state of ruthless competition were more likely to survive, and so passed on the genes and cultural practices, transforming humanity from selfish cavemen to charitable gentlemen. This seems logical, and from experience we know that we cannot only rely on ourselves if we are to survive. And we do indeed see animals help one another: penguins huddle together to keep warm and take turns being on the outside of the huddle, gorillas groom each other, and many mammals care for their young with what appears to be almost human intimacy. It appears that religion is simply a natural phenomenon if religion is essentially altruism.

 

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Wed

29

Mar

2017

Not a Thing to be Grasped

 

 

by Gjergji Evangjeli

 

 

The Feast of the Annunciation always compels me to give some thought to Our Lord's Incarnation. It is such a strange thing. In fact, if it does not jump off the page to you, if you are not utterly confounded by the idea, I would humbly say that you do not understand it as well as you could. In the Republic[1] , Socrates rejects the possibility that any of the Greek gods would ever accept to be embodied, because that would entail going from a more perfect mode of existence to a less perfect one. The understanding of the body is different between the Platonic and the Biblical worldview, but Plato’s claim is true of the Christian God a fortiori[2] . The Greek gods are far from perfect, not only for reasons that Socrates rejects, but also due to their conception as such. They are multiple, finite, created, and limited. The Christian God, on the other hand, is the Creator. He is one, infinite and infinitely perfect, and omnipotent. Why would such a God accept to do such a thing as to take on a form infinitely lower than Himself?

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Wed

29

Mar

2017

Overwhelmed by God

 

 

by Annalise Deal

 

 

Recently I had the opportunity to go on a Kairos retreat, which was both wonderful and overwhelming. My leader that weekend helped me to connect the feeling of being overwhelmed in the Connors Center, with a similar overwhelming feeling I had three months ago.

 

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Wed

29

Mar

2017

A Life of Faith

 

 

by Andrew Craig

 

“I have never been to the funeral of someone I do not know,” said one of my friends as we gathered in St. Ignatius Church. It had been awhile since I went to a funeral of someone I did not know. However, this service was different. Even though I never had the blessing to meet Reverend J. Donald Monan, S.J., I had read and heard about him enough to understand how important he was to BC and to everyone he came in contact with.

 

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Wed

29

Mar

2017

God Doesn’t Use Google Calendar

 

by Eileen Corkery

 

Do you use Google Calendar? If you do not currently use it, be careful—for better or for worse, it will change your life. A free time-management app for smartphones, Google Calendar allows users to create and edit events with the tap of a finger. Have an important appointment you can’t forget? Google Calendar will send you a push notification. Forget the time of your club meeting on Saturday? Use Google Calendar to view an itinerary of your entire week. The app can add virtually any planned event into your schedule—meals, television, even sleep.

 

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Wed

22

Feb

2017

“The Beginning of Devotion”

 

 

 

by Libbie Steiner

 

 

“Attention is the beginning of devotion.” In a perfectly distilled phrase of just six words, poet Mary Oliver commanded my consideration. I wasn’t exactly sure what it meant, but I knew that I wanted to know. I knew that it was significant and truthful. There was something about it that made me want to let the words sink into my soul.

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Wed

22

Feb

2017

On Lent and Ascesis

 

by Gjergji Evangjeli

 

 

With Lent approaching fast, it is perhaps particularly important to give some thought to the topic of fasting and—more importantly—ascesis. The Church from Her earliest days—as is evident from the Didache—has prescribed particular days and times when one is expected to fast. Why is it that we fast, what is the point of it and what is its benefit?

 

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