IP#287 Dr. Christopher Kaczor – The Gospel of Happiness on Inside the Pages

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Dr. Christopher Kaczor once again not only enlightens our minds but also our hearts with his new book, “The Gospel of Happiness: Rediscover Your Faith Through Spiritual Practice and Positive Psychology”. Through a study of positive psychology, philosopher Dr. Kaczor  finds therein the wisdom of many Christian practices and teachings.  In this very complex world we live in, it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that we were created by God to be happy.   Our hearts seek that happiness, but many of us have lost our way.  Dr. Kaczor points us to a bridge that shows us “The Way” to authentic happiness and joy.  His work is always informative, engaging and wonderfully insightful. A very practical work that will remind the reader of another great Catholic author and professor of Philosophy…Dr. Peter Kreeft.  Highly Recommended!!!

Gospel-of-HappinessYou can find the book here

“God made us to be happy — to be blessed and to live with joy. And all of us are born with this desire for happiness in our hearts. But sometimes we can get a little lost along the way. We can find ourselves looking for happiness in the wrong places. Christopher Kaczor shows us the right path and he walks the path with us — shining new light on the ancient ways of forgiveness and gratitude, humility, prayer and service to our neighbor. Kaczor is a wise guide and this book can help all of us to grow in our relationships with others and our journey with God.” —The Most Rev. José H. Gomez, Archbishop of Los Angeles 

“In The Gospel of Happiness, Christopher Kaczor creates a refreshing new approach to a traditional theme lying at the heart of both Christianity and philosophy – the pursuit of happiness. Recognizing the dictum of Aristotle that happiness is the one objective we seek for itself, and that everything else is sought for the sake of happiness, he creates an understandable, practical, and usable path that combines contemporary psychology with traditional Christian teaching. He lays his foundation by appealing to seven Christian ways to happiness – “faith, hope, and love,” prayer, gratitude, forgiveness, virtue, and willpower, and enriches them with the five elements of positive psychology – positive emotion, engagement, relationships, meaning, and achievement. By using Martin Seligman’s new positive approach to psychology, he bridges formerly perceived gaps between psychology and faith — opening the way for Christians to benefit from the insights and healing of this important discipline.” —Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D., author of Finding True Happiness

 

 

SBN #1 Salvation Begins Now: Last Things First with Deacon James Keating

Episode 1 Salvation Begins Now: Last Things First – What are the “Last Things”?  Death, Purgatory, Heaven, Hell, the Last Judgement, Eternal Life will be explored in this series.  In this episode we begin the discussion on What is death?  What is resurrection? What is the connection between the body and the soul?

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

994 But there is more. Jesus links faith in the resurrection to his own person: “I am the Resurrection and the life.”544 It is Jesus himself who on the last day will raise up those who have believed in him, who have eaten his body and drunk his blood.545 Already now in this present life he gives a sign and pledge of this by restoring some of the dead to life,546 announcing thereby his own Resurrection, though it was to be of another order. He speaks of this unique event as the “sign of Jonah,”547 the sign of the temple: he announces that he will be put to death but rise thereafter on the third day.548

Check out Deacon Keating’s “Discerning Hearts” page

The Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Seven Sorrows  of the Blessed Virgin Mary

olsorrowsThe Virgin Mary, who believed in the word of the Lord, did not lose her faith in God when she saw her Son rejected, abused and crucified. Rather she remained beside Jesus, suffering and praying, until the end. And she saw the radiant dawn of His Resurrection. Let us learn from her to witness to our faith with a life of humble service, ready to personally pay the price of staying faithful to the Gospel of love and truth, certain that nothing that we do will be lost.

— Pope Benedict XVI, Angelus – September 13, 2009

Collect:

Father,
as Your Son was raised on the cross,
His mother Mary stood by Him, sharing His sufferings.
May Your Church be united with Christ
in His suffering and death
and so come to share in His rising to new life,
where He lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Devotion from the revelation to St. Bridget of Sweden:

The Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary from Discerning Hearts on Vimeo.

SP#6 – “The Difference between Spiritual Reality and Fantasy” – The School of Prayer with Fr. Scott Traynor

Fr. Scott Traynor - The School of Prayer: Foundations for the New Evangelization 1SP#6 The School of Prayer: Foundations for the New Evangelization

Fr. Scott Traynor talks about how God wants to have an intimate relationship with us. What is the dynamic of this relationship? He longs for us to freely give ourselves to Him. Fr. Scott talks about the gift of our imagination and what is true spiritual reality as opposed to fantasy. How do I tell the difference? What is the nature of the effect? Is it lasting or does it evaporate after the experience? Is Jesus in the center of the reality we are encountering? He describes the use of Lectio Divina, the praying with Sacred Scripture, that helps us to enter into the deeper relationship we are called to by God. Fr. Scott explains the difference between the Ignatian and Carmelite understandings of “contemplation”. Is there an ordinary Catholic “mysticism”? Do we miss it?

Parish-School-of-PrayerIn Father Scott Traynor’s book, Blessed John Paul II’s memorable call to make of the parish a school of prayer takes on flesh and becomes concretely attainable. Those you read these faith-filled pages will find renewed desire to create such parishes and a clear road-map toward this goal.

–Father Timothy Gallagher, OMV

 

Father Scott Traynor received his STB from the Pontifical Gregorian University and his JCL from the Catholic University of America. He has been an instructor and spiritual director for many of the programs at the Institute for Priestly Formation.

Father Traynor is a retreat master and spiritual director who has traveled the country as a speaker at various conferences, diocesan gatherings, and national conferences. He is especially sought after to present on the topics of prayer, discernment and priestly identity and mission.

He serves the Rector of the St. John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver Colorado.

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SP#5 – “The Hazards in Spiritual Desolation” – The School of Prayer with Fr. Scott Traynor

SP#5 The School of Prayer: Foundations for the New Evangelization

Fr. Scott Traynor - The School of Prayer: Foundations for the New Evangelization 1Fr. Scott Traynor talks about the fear of pain. He speaks of the difference between true and false suffering. The gaze of the Father transforms our pain. How do we invite Jesus into the heart of that pain? Fr. Scott helps us to recognize the “mine field” we navigate in our lives and how it affects our relationship with God, especially in prayer. He speaks abut the “hazards” in spiritual desolation. Jesus can “disarm” those “landmines”, if we allow Him in. We should never travel in the “mine field” alone. Fr. Scott also talks about the importance of silence and discernment. To attend to moment of God’s loving gaze.

Parish-School-of-Prayer

 

In Father Scott Traynor’s book, Blessed John Paul II’s memorable call to make of the parish a school of prayer takes on flesh and becomes concretely attainable. Those you read these faith-filled pages will find renewed desire to create such parishes and a clear road-map toward this goal.

–Father Timothy Gallagher, OMV

Father Scott Traynor received his STB from the Pontifical Gregorian University and his JCL from Catholic University of America. He has been an instructor and spiritual director for many of the programs at the Institute for Priestly Formation.

Father Traynor is a retreat master and spiritual director who has travelled the country as a speaker at various conferences, diocesan gatherings and national conferences.. He is especially sought after to present on the topics of prayer, discernment and priestly identity and mission.

He serves the Rector of the St. John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver Colorado.

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Ash Wednesday and Lent with Deacon James Keating

Ash Wednesday and Lent

Deacon James Keating and Kris McGregor discuss Ash Wednesday and our Lenten practice.

Deacon Keating is the Director of Theological Formation for the Institute for Priestly Formation at Creighton University.

Click here for more Deacon Keating

 

IP#114 Michael Novak – Living the Call: An Introduction to the Lay Vocation on Inside the Pages

Michael Novak is a shining witness of what occurs in the soul when the head makes the journey to the heart.  What a gift he is to all of us and what a profound sage of wisdom…when he so gently speaks, I listen….we all should!  In “Living the Call: An Introduction to the Lay Vocation,” Michael, along with his co-author William E. Simon, Jr, establishes, in Part 1, of the book, the need for the lay vocation in the Church today.  They chronicle that need with a national and global perspective.  They also present how “living the call”  looks in the lives of nine committed lay faithful working in parish life today.

Part 2 is worth its weight in gold! It outlines the absolute necessity of growth in the interior life of the laity.  How essential it is to deepen the spiritual life.  They give voice to the need to appreciate the desert experiences of our lives as opportunities for greater unity with Christ; such periods provide the fonts of grace which nurtures the work in ministry.   For anyone who severs in a ministry of any kind, either as an employee or as a volunteer, if you pass this indispensable book by, you do so at your peril!

 

Michael Novak’s website can be found here

 You can find “Living the Call” here

“This is the book that countless Catholic laypeople have been waiting for as they ponder how to respond to Vatican II’s challenge to take more active roles in the life of the Church and to bring Christian principles to life in the secular world. It’s a gem of a book that speaks to laypeople in all walks of life and at all stages of their earthly journeys.”

Mary Ann Glendon, Learned Hand Professor of Law, Harvard University

IP#121 Fr. Larry Richards – Surrender on Inside the Pages

“Surrender! The Life Changing Power of Doing God’s Will” is another outstanding offering from Fr. Larry Richards!  From start to finish Fr. Larry challenges us to place Jesus Christ first in our lives and our relationships with others and the world.  Once we can do that, things begin to fall into place.  Then he helps us to recognize the difference between God’s will and our will, and to trust that His will be better for us if we trust, love and….SURRENDER!

Fr. Larry Richards is an engaging writer, who never fails to keep us hooked through the entire book.  This will be one of those books that you want to purchase at least two copies, because you’ll want to pass it on to another, and you’ll want to keep one for yourself for years to come.

 

You can find the book here

From the book description:

…Surrender outlines concrete steps you can take to dwell in peace. Simply put, God wants every one of us to be a saint which is a lot of work! It requires developing a plan for your life, in accordance with the Lord’s will.

Prayer is the key to this, as it opens the soul to hearing God’s voice and accepting his guidance. But prayer too requires discipline and planning. Father Richards is the life coach every one of us needs on the sidelines of our daily life the tough love coach who calls it like he sees it.

Allow yourself to move out of the driver seat and surrender to the one who knows all God.

 

 

IP#3 Sr. Ann Shields – “To Be Like Jesus” on Inside the Pages

It was great to talk with Sr. Ann Shields, of “Food for the Journey”, about her new book “To Be Like Jesus – Inspiration From the Gospel of Luke”  .  In her maternal nurturing way she encourages us to “feed” on the great gift of God’s Holy Word.

You can find the book here.

From the book description:

God’s plan for your life is not as mysterious or unknowable as you might think. As Sister Ann Shields demonstrates in her probing reflections on the Gospel of Luke, the key to knowing what God is asking of you is to discover, first, who God is. If you are willing to spend time daily in his presence, ruminating on his word as it comes to you in Scripture, he will reveal himself and help you make the choices that conform to his will for your life.

To Be Like Jesus will enable you to distinguish God’s voice from the voices, noise and distractions of the world. As you let his word soak into your soul, you’ll find there the power to surrender to him and play your part in building his kingdom.

 

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