Friar Jack’s E-spirations: Grace on the Go

Friar Jack’s E-spirations: Grace on the Go

For almost two years, I have had the pleasure of editing one of Franciscan Media‘s most successful e-newsletters, Friar Jack’s E-spirations. Written by Jack Wintz, OFM, and Jim Van Vurst, OFM, this bimonthly, free e-newsletter contains information and inspiration, as well as the friars’ musings on everything from Mother’s Day to Scripture; from Franciscan principles to the sacraments Catholics hold dear.

Here’s a sample of Jim Van Vurst, OFM’s latest E-spiration on Mary Magdalene:

Jim Van Vurst, OFM

“There is something special about Mary Magdalene, and the Gospel reminds us that, from the beginning of Jesus’ life and ministry, women played a most significant role. They have so much to contribute to the Church and to the people of God. They are a force for good that shouldn’t be neglected.”

Friar Jack has written extensively on the topic of animals, and God’s desire to bring the whole family of creation together in heaven. Here’s a sample of one of Jack’s latest e-newsletters:

Jack Wintz, OFM

“In my experience, children are more ready than most adults to accept the hints and clues we find in the Bible or in the life of St. Francis of Assisi. These clues encourage our children to believe that someday they will see their pets again in heaven. Children can easily understand that there were lots of animals and birds that were happy with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden—before our first parents ate that forbidden fruit. Now, if these animals were happy with God in that original paradise, why would they not also be happy with him in the paradise that is yet to come?”

Happy Subscribers

In addition to editing Friar Jack’s E-spirations, I also manage the inbox. Subscribers write often—and glowingly—about the bimonthly e-newsletter. One letter recently caught my attention.

“Dear Friar Jim: Thank you for your wonderful reflection on being merciful. In this day and age, that isn’t always easy. Not long after our mother died two years ago, my sister, Lisa, and I became estranged. We’ve often fought throughout our lives (she’s 58 and I’m 52). When I read your e-newsletter on being merciful, forgiving, choosing love over spite, I was taken aback. After working up some courage, I called Lisa. We met for tea and talked for hours. Our relationship is beginning to heal. I don’t know that I would have picked up that phone if I hadn’t read your E-spiration. Thank you for inspiring me to do the right thing. Love, Margie”

To subscribe to Friar Jack’s E-spirations, go here.

Photo: olga/


About the Author

Christopher Heffron is the associate editor and social media editor of St. Anthony Messenger magazine, and the managing editor of Liberty + Vine. A seeker at heart, he loves music, film, good writing, pop culture, and time spent with family and friends.