Christmas Cheer

And the light shines in darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. John 1:5 Traditionally, Christmas is a season of warmth and light. Even as the northern hemisphere reaches its darkest days, and the arctic blasts of January approach, the world sparkles with tinsel and smiles, and ubiquitous signs of universal good cheer. AtContinue reading “Christmas Cheer”

Mercy in the Morning

It is good to give praise to the Lord: and to sing to thy name, O most High. To show forth thy mercy in the morning, and thy truth in the night. Psalm 91:1-2 Among my early morning prayers is one commissioned for daily recitation by members of the Confraternity of St. Peter. Although IContinue reading “Mercy in the Morning”

The Light of the Living

Psalm 55 (56 in the Hebrew) is written for “a people that is removed at a distance from the sanctuary.” Separated from his Creator, man turns on himself and becomes his own enemy: Have mercy on me, O God, for man hath trodden me under foot; all the day long he hath afflicted me fightingContinue reading “The Light of the Living”

Betting on the Strong Man

When a strong man armed keeps his court, those things are in peace which he possesses. Luke 11:21 For his pains in casting out a devil of dumbness, our Lord is accused of being in league with the devil. On its face, the accusation is preposterous, assuming as it does that Satan is dumb enoughContinue reading “Betting on the Strong Man”

Piercing Through

To live by faith is to live in joy, assurance, certitude, confidence in what one must do and suffer at each moment at God’s command. It is to animate and sustain this life of faith that God permits the soul to be overwhelmed and carried away on the tumultuous waters of so many pains, troubles,Continue reading “Piercing Through”

With Purified Hearts

After the days of [Mary’s] purification, according to the law of Moses, were accomplished, they carried [the child Jesus] to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord, as it is written in the law of the Lord. Luke 2:22-23 In August of 1733, Jan Dismas Zelenka (1679-1745) composed this Mass (streaming, download) to celebrate “ourContinue reading “With Purified Hearts”

Arise, O Jerusalem!

Arise, O Jerusalem, and stand on high: and look about towards the east. Behold the joy that comes to thee from thy God! Baruch 5:5, 4:36 Wishing all our readers a blessed and happy Christmastide! As Stephen Beale reminds us, “Christ who was of heaven was born on earth so that those of the earthContinue reading “Arise, O Jerusalem!”

Knowing the Season

Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away. luke 21:33 One of the most common forms of moral relativism is historicism, the notion that right and wrong are determined by the era in which one lives. Though few could define the term or explain its philosophic lineage, historicism rears itsContinue reading “Knowing the Season”

Carrying Cross and Candle

That to profane eyes was contemptible, which the hearts of saints would afterwards glory in: Christ displaying his own cross on his shoulders, and bearing that which was not to be put under a bushel, the candlestick of that candle which was now about to burn. st augustine Christ bids us light our candles andContinue reading “Carrying Cross and Candle”

Cultivating Spiritual Prudence

Prudence is the virtue whereby we discover the best means to the best ends. Christ teaches us how to cultivate prudence in spiritual things when he likens “the kingdom of heaven” (our salvation) to “ten virgins, who taking their lamps went out to meet the bridegroom and the bride” (Mt. 25:1-13). The bridegroom is ChristContinue reading “Cultivating Spiritual Prudence”