Category Archives: Spiritual Life

Re-creating the Apostleship of Prayer

I would hope that Catholics know and utilize the work of of the Apostleship of Prayer. You would know the Apostleship because of their publication of the Pope’s monthly prayer intentions, the advocacy of the Morning Offering and devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Well, there is good work being done to make the ministry of these faithful Jesuits more known so as to lead all to Christ. 

Cindy Wooden of CNS notes, 

“Membership in
the Apostleship of Prayer involves a commitment to beginning each day with a
prayer offering one’s life to God and praying for the needs of the universal
church and the intentions of the pope. Members promise to end each day
prayerfully reviewing their blessings and failings.

The morning offering and
prayers are the basic membership requirements, and in many countries the
apostleship has no registration, no groups, no fees, and no special meetings.
The Jesuits estimate that about 50 million people fulfill the membership
requirements in the apostleship and its youth wing, the Eucharistic Youth

The September 17th article is here.

Please join the Apostleship of Prayer (see the link above).

Dolan meet Colbert

Dolan and Martin.jpg

One of the most clever, that is, funny men in show biz today is Stephen Colbert. He’s also practicing his Catholicsm and serves as a catechist.
Mr Colbert, with a friend, Jesuit Father James Martin of American Magazine will host a show with New York’s archbishop, Timothy Michael Cardinal Dolan. Get ready for a laugh!
On the Cardinal’s blog there’s his article “Humor, Joy and the Spiritual Life.”
Laurie Goodstein from the NY Times wrote, “A Comedian and a Cardinal Open Up on Spirituality.”
On the AP is Rachel Zoll’s article: “Colbert to NY Fordham students: ‘I love my church.

Prayer participates in Christ’s coming in glory

Prayer enables us to discern the events of history in
the light of God’s plan for the spread of his Kingdom. That plan is symbolized
by the book closed with seven seals which only the Lamb, the crucified and
risen Lord, can open. In prayer, we see that Christ’s final victory over sin
and death is the key to all history. While giving thanks for this victory, we
continue to beg God’s grace for our earthly journey. Amid life’s evils, the
Lord hears our prayers, strengthens our weakness, and enables us to trust in
his sovereign power. The Book of Revelation concludes with Jesus’ promise that
he will soon come, and the Church’s ardent prayer “Come, Lord
Jesus!”. In our own prayer, and especially in our celebration of the
Eucharist, may we grow in the hope of Christ’s coming in glory, experience the
transforming power of his grace, and learn to discern all things in the light
of faith. 

Pope Benedict XVI 
General Audience
12 September 2012

Working with your FOMO

Many people are plagued with FOMO. Do you know what FOMO is? Think: Fear of missing out.

Why ain’t I doing this? Why ain’t I at that party, in that conversation, being recognized for this and that achievement. FOMO questions our making of the right choices? FOMO wants to advance my cause. The other as other counts for little. FOMO paralyzes our humanity because its focus on the sentimental, superficial, on the unfocussed. It reduces our human relationships to an object. FOMO is a post-modern way of speaking of deadly sin (mortal sin). FOMO leads to the death of one’s personhood.
FOMO is an insecurity not only in social circumstances but also, and more importantly, in the spiritual life. It is a reduction of our religious sense, a reduction of someone greater. FOMO is not living life in the present moment. FOMO is the sin of envy, pride, and self-centeredness. It is the un-awareness that you can’t do it all. Reversing the effects of FOMO is the recognition that you are not able to be everywhere at all times. Most people are not given the gift of bi-location. Saint Padre Pio had the gift, but he likely used it for the building the Kingdom of God and not his own agenda.
Do you have joy? Do I love? What fills me with anxiety? How does Christ answer the desires of my heart? Are you aware of the gifts that are in front of you? Can I discover my true self in the life I lead, in the work I do, in the person I am? Are you bitter towards others? Are you aware that you are loved by God and others for the person you are, and not the person you think you are, or should be? The focus on Christ overcomes FOMO because it’s less about the whim (what could have happened…) and more on the certainty that Christ exists, that He’s a concrete reality and that only God makes and sustains us. say it another way, attention to the religious sense in my life (and other others) acknowledges that God has a tenderness for me — and this tenderness is a sign of a relationship with Him.
Above I mentioned that FOMO is a reduction of one’s religious sense. What does that mean? Well, look at it this way: what are the desires of your human heart? How do these desires of the heart allow us to see the attractiveness of everything, even to consider the implications of  a desire’s inadequacy. The masters tell us it is not enough to be aware of the religious sense, the religious sense has to push us forward in our relationship with God (the Divine Mystery) so as not to lose my personhood, my “I”.

Are you living in Christ now?

Saint Benedict has a special place in his Rule for eternity.
The eternal life is usually a subject that many people run away from because in
order to fully enjoy eternity one needs to confront death. Well, that’s what
many think. The Lord’s promise of eternal life and many of benefits can be
enjoyed before one dies. In fact, that’s what the sacraments give us: a
foretaste of eternity. Baptism opens the door, washes away sin, imparts grace,
and makes one an adopted child of God; the Eucharist nourishes our spiritual
life, and builds communion with the Trinity; Confirmation imparts the Gifts of
the Holy Spirit and Beatitude, etc. Sacraments give the faithful a share in
Beatitude if lived in a state of grace and according to the Eight Beatitudes. 

question really is what the Apostle Paul said, and what is adhered to by true Christians, particularly saints, “To
me to live is Christ,” (Mihi Vivere Christus)” (Phil: 1, 21). Living means being closely united, in communion, with Christ. Catholics live in Christ by living the sacraments and according to Scripture but the teaching of the saints also illumine our path.

A verse in
the Prologue to Saint Benedict’s Rule refocuses us:

“If we wish to reach eternal
life, even as we avoid the torments of hell, then – while there is still time,
while we are in this body and have time to accomplish all these things by the
light of life – we must run and do now what will profit us for all eternity.” (Prologue
42 – 44,RB).

The teaching, some have said, can be interpreted to mean that Saint
Benedict is urging his disciples to put into daily practice right now what we will
be doing for all eternity: that is, giving glory and praise to God. How we give
God glory and praise is done through our daily lives of personal and communal prayer,
in faithfulness and obedience to the Divine Majesty. This was the source of someone
who knows God: a lifelong fidelity, joyfulness, and an openness to Wonder. The
position of wonder speaks to our youthful spirit and joy was keeping our eyes,
our mind and our heart fixed on Jesus Christ and the promise of the Hundredfold.

Do you wish to reach your ultimate destiny, eternal life? What will you do to run along the path?

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]
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