Spirituality

Whoever drinks the water I shall give will never thirst.
John 4:14

During Philadelphia’s harsh winter, Joe lived on a steam grate in center city. George had met him there while volunteering with a homeless outreach program. Joe, articulate and engaging, was easy to befriend. Nevertheless, he was afraid to come in to the shelter.

One morning, on his way to a downtown meeting, George stopped to pick up coffee. He decided it would be nice to take a cup to Joe on his way. Sitting down on Joe’s grate, George offered him the steaming coffee. “Oh, thanks anyway, but I only drink tea,” Joe said. George burst out laughing at his noble mistake. “You didn’t think homeless people had choices, did you?” Joe countered. George, a good-hearted, generous man, learned a lesson that day about the human dignity often hidden under accretions of poverty, neglect and disenfranchisement.
Jesus made no such mistake when he met the woman at the well. Instead, he peeled through her accretions by respectful engagement and questioning. The woman, heartened by him, responded wholeheartedly.

This week, God invites us to strip away any pretense or fear keeping us from coming home to him. The readings remind us to hear, observe and teach the Divine Law. They encourage us to soften our hearts for God’s voice.

God knows our brokenness and hard-heartedness. Yet, we are invited to repent and to believe that we are not far from God’s kingdom. This week is a good time to seek God’s feedback on our lives by a sincere examination of conscience, and a fearless request for healing. It is a perfect time to come home to Love.

Reposted courtesy of Catholic Health Association USA. For the 2017 Lenten series, CHA collaborated with Sr. Renee Yann, RSM, D.Min., a Sister of Mercy of the Mid-Atlantic Community, who graciously authored each of the reflections. Retired after more than 50 years in education and health care, she now ministers through spiritual writing and consulting. She can be followed on Twitter @ReneeYann

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Spirituality and You: Ash Wednesday

Receiving ashes on Ash Wednesday

Monday, February 27, 2017

in News

Ash Wednesday—Beginning of Lent

As children, how we loved a treasure hunt—hidden jellybeans and pennies turned to gems and gold doubloons in our young imaginations!  Even as adults, perhaps on an antiques adventure, we thrill at the thought of a secret only we can know, at the challenges and possibilities of an undiscovered trove.

On Ash Wednesday, we begin the most extreme of treasure hunts. It is one in which we examine our lives in the Light of Jesus. We do this to unearth the Infinite Mystery revealed at the fractured tomb on Easter morning. The key to that mystery is hidden somewhere within us, and Lent is the pilgrimage to find it.

From the shadows where we pray, fast and give alms, an urgent question rises in our hearts. What might the treasure look like when we find it? When the stone is finally rolled away, might I meet Jesus anew in my life? Might I truly see the Mercy of God in human flesh? Now, in this acceptable time, we take our first steps toward God’s answer.

–Catholic Health Association

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Spirituality and You: Heaven

Monday, February 20, 2017

You don’t go to heaven; you learn how to live in heaven now. And no one lives in heaven alone. Either you learn how to live in communion with the human race and with all that God has created, or, quite simply, you’re not ready for heaven. If you want to live an isolated life, [more…]

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Spirituality and You: Love

Monday, February 13, 2017

Love is Essential! 
Wendell Berry, writes, “I take literally the statement in the Gospel of John that God loves the world. I believe that the world was created and approved by love, that it subsists, coheres, and endures by love, and that, insofar as it is redeemable, it can be redeemed only by love. I believe [more…]

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World Day of the Sick

Saturday, February 11, 2017

25th World Day of the Sick: February 11, 2017
The World Day of the Sick was instituted by Pope Saint John Paul II in 1992 as a special time of prayer and sharing and of offering one’s suffering. Each year it is recognized on Feb. 11, the commemoration of Our Lady of Lourdes, recalling a series of [more…]

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Spirituality and You: wisdom from proverbs

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

This week, Sister Valerie shares more proverbs from around the world. Which one do you like the best?

“When a thief kisses you, count your teeth.” (Yiddish)
“He who is outside his door already has a hard part of his journey behind him.” (Dutch)
“When a blind person carries a lame person, both go forward.” (Swedish)
“Hold a true friend [more…]

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Spirituality and You: Wisdom

Monday, January 23, 2017

This week Sister Valerie Sweeney invites us to look at some proverbs from other countries. Can you find the wisdom that each one contains?

“In the midst of great joy, do not promise anyone anything. In the midst of great anger, do not answer anyone’s letter.” (Chinese)
“The reverse side also has a reverse side.” (Japanese)
“It is [more…]

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Spirituality and You: Promoting peace and unity

Monday, January 16, 2017

As we celebrate Martin Luther King Day, this quote still speaks strongly a half-century after his death:
“We’ve learned to fly the air like birds, we’ve learned to swim the seas like fish, and yet we haven’t learned to walk the earth as brothers and sisters.” -Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
What can you do today to [more…]

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Spirituality and You: True meaning of Christmas

Friday, December 23, 2016

This week we reflect on the true meaning of Christmas:
“It’s sharing your gifts, not purchasing gifts;
It’s not wrapping presents, it’s being present
and wrapping your arms around the ones you love.
It’s not getting Christmas cards out on time,
It’s sending any card, anytime, at the right time.
It’s not having the biggest and best Christmas light display;
It’s displaying [more…]

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Spirituality and You: How to pray

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

When you go to your place of prayer, don’t try to think too much or manufacture feelings or sensations. Don’t worry about what words you should say or what posture you should take. It’s not about you or what you do. Simply allow Love to look at you—and trust what God sees! God just keeps [more…]

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