Ready for Merton

An old saying, sometimes attributed to an anonymous Zen master, asserts, “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” On the upcoming 100th anniversary of Thomas Merton’s birth (January 30, 2015), this would seem to be the case for me and his writings. I first encountered Merton in my 20s,...

Apocalypse Now?

What did it feel like to be with Jesus when he mentioned that “not a stone will be left upon another stone” when the Temple would be destroyed? That’s the thought that sparks my imagination whenever I read today’s Gospel selection (Lk 21:5-11). The disciples listening to Jesus immediately asked: When...

How Many Kids Do You Have?

Recently, I had the pleasure of volunteering at a fundraising event for our local seminary. I saw a pregnant lady at the buffet, struggling with a small child in one arm and a plate in the other. I immediately offered to help with the plate (assuming she would not voluntarily hand her child over to a...

Living Out Your Faith

When my oldest son was in high school he volunteered one day a week at a low-income housing program. After school, he would drive over to the center and spend about an hour or two just hanging out with some of the young kids. He would read books to them, color with them, or maybe play outside with the older...

Speak Life

I was on a conference call with an author yesterday, when I was struck by a statement he made: we’re all struggling. I found myself getting lost in that thought because it’s one I’ve had pretty often myself. We’re all doing the best we can to get along, but oftentimes we fail to see that others are...

Dr. St. Hildegard

Last Wednesday, September 17, was the feast of Hildegard of Bingen, named a saint in May 2012 and a Doctor of the Church in October of that same year. Known as the Sibyl of the Rhine, she was a Benedictine abbess, theologian, mystic, artist, musician, poet, and doctor (and who knows what else; this is what...

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