The Mystery of Suffering

BA3 – The Crucible of Suffering and the Gift of Faith – Begin Again: The Spiritual Legacy of Ven. Bruno Lanteri with Fr. Timothy Gallagher

In this episode, Fr. Timothy Gallagher discusses the crucible of suffering that occurred in the young Bruno Lanteri’s life. The tragedies became the stepping stones for newness in the spiritual journey. So are the opportunities that may arise in our lives when we are challenged with failure, suffering, and illness. Like Ven. Lanteri, will we “begin again” and allow faith to support and guide us through the storms of life?

BTP-LR1 The “Last Retreat” Day 1 – Beginning to Pray with Dr. Anthony Lilles

From “Last Retreat Day 1” found in The Complete Works vol 1:

1. “Nescivi.” 1 “I no longer knew anything.” This is what the “bride of the Canticles ” sings after having been brought into the “inner cellar.” 2 It seems to me that this must also be the refrain of a praise of glory on this first day of retreat in which the Master makes her penetrate the depths of the bottomless abyss so that He may teach her to fulfill the work which will be hers for eternity and which she must already perform in time, which is eternity begun and still in progress. 3 “Nescivi”! I no longer know anything, I do not want to know anything except “to know Him, to share in His sufferings, to become like Him in His death.” 4 “Those whom God has foreknown He has also predestined to become confirmed to the image of His divine Son,” 5 the One crucified by love. When I am wholly identified with this divine Exemplar, 6 when I have wholly passed into Him and He into me, then I will fulfill my eternal vocation: the one for which God has “chosen me in Him ” 7 “in principio,” the one I will continue “in aeternum” when, immersed in the bosom of my Trinity, I will be the unceasing praise of His glory, Laudem gloriae ejus.

IP#183 Dr. Regis Martin – Still Point: Loss, Longing and Our Search for God on Inside the Pages

Dr. Regis Martin, as Dr. Scott Hahn has said, is “a sage for our times”. By presenting the truths of our faith with such beauty, he evangelizes directly the heart. Dr. Martin is a joy to read.

I didn’t want “Still Point: Loss, Longing and Our Search for God” to end. That is the mark of a great book for me…it is one I desire to return to over and over again. He offers the rich insights of the saints, poets, and philosophers, to direct us to the “still point” where “one encounters the mingling of past and future, grit and grace, man and God.” Wonderful, enchanting, poignant and compelling…don’t miss.

IP#253 Fr. Robert Cormier – Better Than We Believed on Inside the Pages

It was rich blessing to have the opportunity to talk Fr. Robert Cormier about his book “Better Than We Believed: How to Apply the Vision That Is Faith to the Struggle That Is Life”. With an incredible witness in ministry Fr. Bob, as he prefers to be called, has served a parish priest for many years, as well as prison chaplain and a rehab counselor. For the last eighteen years he has been president of Project Live—a leading institution for the care of the mentally ill. He also spent summers in mission work in Guatemala and other areas of Central America. This varied background serves him well as he addresses many of the the areas which challenge many people when it comes to “faith”. What is faith? And how do I live it out? Especially when afraid or challenged, how can I draw on faith for strength to live the life that we were meant for? This books is an excellent resource and wonderful source of inspiration.

(Special note:; On May 13, Fr. Bob died in a climbing accident on Mount Hood in Oregon, after reaching the summit. He was 57 years old. Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May the soul of Fr. Bob, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.)

“Into Your Hands I Commend My Spirit” with Fr. James Rafferty and Deacon James Keating

Fr. James Rafferty and Deacon James Keating offered a Lenten Morning of Reflection on behalf of the Institute for Priestly Formation entitled “Into Your Hands I Commend My Spirit”. William-Adolphe Bouguereau’s “Pieta” was used as the vocal point for reflection, as well as the following passages: From  John 3:16-17 For God so loved the world that […]

HR#22 “On Suffering” – The Holy Rule of St. Benedict with Fr. Mauritius Wilde O.S.B

“On Suffering” – CHAPTER 7

an excerpt:

The fourth degree of humility is, that, if hard and distasteful things are commanded, nay, even though injuries are inflicted, he accept them with patience and even temper, and not grow weary or give up, but hold out, as the Scripture saith: “He that shall persevere unto the end shall be saved” (Mt 10:22). And again: “Let thy heart take courage, and wait thou for the Lord” (Ps 26[27]:14). And showing that a faithful man ought even to bear every disagreeable thing for the Lord, it saith in the person of the suffering: “For Thy sake we suffer death all the day long; we are counted as sheep for the slaughter” (Rom 8:36; Ps 43[44]:22). And secure in the hope of the divine reward, they go on joyfully, saying: “But in all these things we overcome because of Him that hath loved us” (Rom 8:37). And likewise in another place the Scripture saith: “Thou, O God, hast proved us; Thou hast tried us by fire as silver is tried; Thou hast brought us into a net, Thou hast laid afflictions on our back” (Ps 65[66]:10-11). And to show us that we ought to be under a Superior, it continueth, saying: “Thou hast set men over our heads” (Ps 65[66]:12). And fulfilling the command of the Lord by patience also in adversities and injuries, when struck on the one cheek they turn also the other; the despoiler of their coat they give their cloak also; and when forced to go one mile they go two (cf Mt 5:39-41); with the Apostle Paul they bear with false brethren and “bless those who curse them” (2 Cor 11:26; 1 Cor 4:12).

BKL#59 – Why Do You Worry? – Building a Kingdom of Love w/ Msgr. John Esseff

*Note: This is a special reflection given by Msgr. Esseff on the morning of his departure for his mission to Peru.

Gospel MT 6:24-34

Jesus said to his disciples:
“No one can serve two masters.
He will either hate one and love the other,
or be devoted to one and despise the other.
You cannot serve God and mammon.

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, Jesus-follow
what you will eat or drink,
or about your body, what you will wear.
Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?
Look at the birds in the sky;
they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing into barns,
yet your heavenly Father feeds them.
Are not you more important than they?
Can any of you by worrying add a single moment to your life-span?
Why are you anxious about clothes?
Learn from the way the wild flowers grow.
They do not work or spin.
But I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor
was clothed like one of them.
If God so clothes the grass of the field,
which grows today and is thrown into the oven tomorrow,
will he not much more provide for you, O you of little faith?
So do not worry and say, ‘What are we to eat?’
or ‘What are we to drink?’or ‘What are we to wear?’
All these things the pagans seek.
Your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.
But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness,
and all these things will be given you besides.
Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself.
Sufficient for a day is its own evil.”

IP#219 Fr. Kenneth Baker S.J. – The Will of God on Inside the Pages

“The Will of God: Finding and Fulfilling Your Purpose in Life” is a great book which uses the great Psalm 119 to help us in the area of discernment. Taking a lifetime of steeped in prayer and sound theology, Fr. Baker gives us a unique and penetrating resource to aid in our growth in the areas of contemplation and discernment. Father Baker was the editor of Homiletic & Pastoral Review for more than 40 years, and currently serves as Editor Emeritus of the online edition. He was a joy to talk with and to learn from….not to be missed for the discerning heart!

IP#207 Sr. Janice McGrane – Saints for Healing On on Inside the Pages

It was a delight to once again talk with Sr. Janice McGrane S. S. J., this time about her book “Saints for Healing: Stories of Courage and Hope”. In this, her second book, she offers a short biography of the lives of 11 saints, their background on relevant cultural issues, and a reflection. Each saint has a special connection to “healing”…some are expected, some are a wonderful surprise. Sr. Janice has introduced us to special companions who can walk with us on the journey to our ultimate destination….an encounter with the Divine Physician. Marvelous, simply marvelous.

The Passion of the Lamb ….In Conversation with Fr. Thomas Acklin O.S.B.

Bruce and I had the opportunity to have a conversation with Fr. Thomas Acklin, a Benedictine monk and priest, is a professor of theology and psychology at St. Vincent College and Seminary in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. He is author of a tremendous work entitled “The Passion of the Lamb”. In this book, he challenges us to become lambs like Christ, the little children He calls us to be so that we may be able to follow him in Word and Deed. Fr. Acklin is a master spiritual director, who helps us to hear the voice of the Lord in our hearts and encourages us to respond, in trust, to the will of the Father. An important not to be missed gift.

IP#184 Fr. Joe Kempf – No One Cries the Wrong Way on Inside the Pages

Fr. Joe Kempf has given us two excellent resources for both adults and kids to help us deal with loss. Fr. Joe really understands the grieving process and offers excellent advice for those at any stage of that journey.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York says this about Fr. Kempf’s books: “Fr. Kempf, with grace and sensitivity, helps us learn what to say – and do – in moments when people long for a word of hope and consolation.”

IP#171 Fr. Michael Gaitley – Consoling the Heart of Jesus on Inside the Pages

What a joy to have the opportunity to talk once again with Fr. Michael Gaitley at the 2012 CMN Trade Show in Dallas, TX. We discuss the Year of Faith, “Consoling the Heart of Jesus” and his new book coming soon…”The One Thing is Three”. We talk about how the New Evangelization and the role model that Bl. John Paul II was to all of us. We all discuss “All Hearts a Fire” the new parish based program which is absolutely FANTASTIC! Be sure to check it out and pass it on!

The Truth About Trouble…. In Conversation with Fr. Michael Scanlan

A few years ago, Bruce and I had the blessing of having a very special conversation with Fr. Michael Scanlan about “The Truth About Trouble: How Hard Times Can Draw You Closer To God”. Fr. Scanlan’s wisdom is extraordinary…he knows how to pastor us through hard times, because he has suffered it, but he also knows that it is through Jesus, with Jesus, in Jesus that in the end all will be well. He talks about the cancer of discontent, which is so dangerous to our spiritual lives. Fr. Scanlan also describes how the devil desires to use trouble to turn us away from God. We should realize that when that is happening and recognize, believe or not, that trouble isn’t the worst thing that could happen to us…it is actually a pathway to purification…be not afraid! What a gift Fr. Scanlan is to us all!

BKL#12 – Building a Kingdom of Love w/ Msgr. John Esseff – Why do those who trust God sometimes suffer?

Show 12 ” Building a Kingdom of Love” – Why do those who trust in God sometimes suffer? Msgr. Esseff then addresses the issue of trust in the Lord as an expression in our faith…even when it’s hard

“BE NOT AFRAID” – Msgr. John Esseff on the role of fear in suffering…and the remedy…faith

[powerpress]Msgr. Esseff discusses the crippling effects of fear and it’s remedy. Fear, in a very real way, is the opposite of faith. There’s an adage in spirituality that says that if we can name the demon we can tame it. Jesus wants us not to be afraid. He may challenge us in some ways, so that we can name it and bring it out of the darkness into peace. The Light dispels the fear! Fear fuels sin. Ultimately, it’s a fear of not being loved and losing relationship in some way. Luke 15 ( the parable of the Prodigal Son) shows us how much the Father loves us…no matter what! He’s waiting with open arms to relieve the pain and suffering. Look at the One who wants to pick you up! Some suffer in silence, especially when falsely accused…stand with Jesus at the first station of the cross. Do not take your eyes off the face of Jesus…we are meant for eternal life. Learn from the examples of the saints… BELIEVE.

Isaiah 41:10
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Bert Ghezzi – Sign of Cross

Related posts: IP#62 Debra Herbeck – Safely through the Storm on Inside the Pages Fr. Thomas Dubay IP#3 Sr. Ann Shields – “To Be Like Jesus” on Inside the Pages IP#117 Fr. Scott Hurd – Forgiveness on Inside the Pages IP#92 Ralph Martin – The Fulfillment of All Desire on Inside the Pages

Blessed Herman the Cripple – author of one of the most heartbreakenly beautiful prayers of all time

The Hail Holy Queen (The Salve Regina)
Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve! To thee do we send up our sighs; mourning and weeping in this vale of tears! Turn, most gracious Advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us, and after this, our exile, show to us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus! O Clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary! Pray for us O Holy Mother of God…That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ. Amen. – Blessed Herman

IP#62 Debra Herbeck – Safely through the Storm on Inside the Pages

Debra Herbeck has compiled a compelling selection of reflections from saints and writers who have suffered, who were tempted to depair, and who were tested in everyway, but through grace and faith, they never gave up. Hope, a viture we can’t live without.  If you or someone you know is suffering through hard times, “Safely […]

IP#13 Mike Aquilina discusses Why Me – When Bad Things Happen on Inside the Pages

Why me? Who hasn’t asked them self that question over and over again throughout the course of their life. With a smile of joy in his voice and compassion in his heart, Mike Aquilina attempts to answer the age old question…Why Me? With Mike’s help, we look toward the saints, and ultimately to Our Blessed Lord, for the answer. Mike tackles this tough subject with love and grace. After all, isn’t that exactly how God attempts to break through to us in our suffering with His answer? On a personal note: Mike Aquilina is one of the finest men I know. It is a joy to talk with him about any subject, but when it comes to matters of the Church and God, watch out…your heart will swell up with faith, hope and love. He’s like your pal on the road to Emmaus