Tag Archives: transformation

Gold That’s Tested in Fire: When Faith is Tested to the Breaking Point

“My child, if you aspire to serve the Lord, prepare yourself for an ordeal.  Be sincere of heart, be steadfast, and do not be alarmed when disaster comes.” Sirach 1:1,2 The Boston Marathon blast that killed three and maimed scores whose lives were changed forever.  The young man at LaSalle H.S. who shot himself.  The three young women who were abducted and held prisoner for ten years in Cleveland.  Sandy Hook, and all those bright-eyed, beautiful kids whose lives were brutally taken.  A baby discarded in a dumpster; countless others aborted. Atrocities in Syria, Nigeria, …

Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Most Hopeful Day of the Year!

I think that the most hopeful day of the year is December 21. While it is the first day of my least favorite season, to me it is a day full of hope because after the 21st, the days begin to get longer. And so, even though I face months of cold feet and painful dry hands, I know that the daylight will increase each day and that spring is going to come. This seems to me a metaphor for life. We live in the tension between the good and the bad, the life-giving and …

Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Mission: Being A Credible Witness

On the weekend of October 19-20, 2012, I was a participant at Mission Connect 2012 that was held at Good Shepherd Parish. I really had not prepared myself for meeting the Christ at this event, but my eyes were soon opened by the wisdom of Sr. Janice McLaughlin, MM, the keynote speaker.  Sr. McLaughlin gave me a wonderful phrase from the African culture for transformation, “to be uprooted.”  This phrase I held onto as I drove home, as I slept and as I returned to Mission Connect the next morning.  I was wrestling with the …

Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

The Spirituality of a Garden

I recently ate the last ear of corn produced by the humble garden in my backyard. As I stood there looking at the seven-foot stalks of corn, noticing the leaves fading from the deep green of spring to the yellowish and dried look of an autumn corn maze, I reflected on the meaning of all that has transpired with my garden. It all began with a decision to pull out a large row of bushes I finally deemed too ugly and deformed to keep, and replace with what I hoped to be a beautiful garden. …

Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

God Loves Weeds

I would never presume to be a gardener. And don’t get me started on the plants I have had in my care. Usually someone else has rescued them. I have many plants out in the world which are friends’ foster plants. So it comes as sort of a surprise that recently I have been learning a lot about weeds – not because I have taken a sudden interest in horticulture but because I have been asked to give a talk with the title, “What We See as Weeds, God Sees as Flowers.” So what is …

Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

What Stan Taught Me

Stan is a homeless man who I pass in the street nearly every day on my way to mass. On differing days I have offered him money, taken him to lunch, had conversations about his life situation, or simply referred him to our local shelter (although he accuses the place of being very unhelpful). Most days, however, I simply acknowledge him by name and bid him well. Every day, however, I wonder which response is the one God asks of me.  Pamphlets inside the church tell me why giving money to directly to this man …

Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

The Gift of Salvation: We Are Being Transformed

“For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus, on the night he was handed over, took bread, and, after he had given thanks, broke it and said, ‘This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.’ In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.’ For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim …

Tagged , , | 4 Comments