CPH1 “Ven. Mary Ward” pt 1 – A Church of Passion and Hope: Conversations with Sr. Gill Goulding C.J.

Episode 1 of our series begins with a discussion on the life of the Ven. Mary Ward, (23 January 1585 – 30 January 1645),  an English Catholic Religious Sister and whose activities led to the founding of the Congregation of Jesus (the order which Sr. Gill Goulding belongs) and the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary, better known as the Sisters of Loreto, which have both established schools around the world.

From “A Church of Passion and Hope – Mary Ward”

A recusant heritage and a disciplined faith formation nurtured a deep encounter with Christ for Mary Ward. This intimacy was the foundation for her progressive discernment and grounded her ecclesial disposition, which was particularly characterized by: courage, faithfulness, generosity and confident freedom in the Lord. It is a passionate love of God that drives her endeavors and is manifest in the manner of her obedience which embraces suffering for the fruitfulness of her mission in the service of the Church.

Mary Ward
Ven. Mary Ward

Sr. Gill Goulding, member of the Congregatio Jesu [IBVM/Loretto] is Associate Professor of Systematic Theology and Spirituality at Regis College in the University of Toronto.  Alongside her work as a theologian, she undertakes a ministry of spiritual direction and retreat work.  She is the author of several books and numerous articles that deal with the theology of Hans Urs von Balthasar, the Theology of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger/Pope Benedict XVI and Ignatian spirituality. In 2012, she was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI as a theological expert to the Synod on the New Evangelization.

Church of Passion and Hope To obtain a copy of the book on which this series is based visit here

“Gill Goulding, C.J. invites readers to move beyond a debilitating polarization in the Church and to adopt an ecclesiology of communion. She presents the ecclesial disposition of St Ignatius of Loyola, rooted in love for Christ, alive to the inseparable union between Christ and the Church, and aware that to love Christ is to love the Church – the real, concrete, hierarchical, “institutional” Church, the people of God, the spouse of Christ infused by His Spirit. Goulding’s love for the Church is evident in all she writes and suffuses the exposition with warmth. One cannot read this book without feeling the call to communion in the Church. A Church of Passion and Hope also serves to highlight an underemphasized part of the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises – the Rules for Thinking (sentir) with the Church – a valuable contribution to Ignatian writing and practice.” ―Fr Timothy Gallagher, O.M.V., Saint Clement Eucharistic Shrine, USA

USCCA30 – Life in Jesus Part 5 – U. S. Catholic Catechism for Adults w/ Arch. George Lucas

Catholic Spiritual Formation - Catholic Spiritual Direction 3

USCCA28 Chapter 24 Life In Jesus part 5

An awareness of the social dimension of human life is an important principle in understanding Christian morality, especially in light of the great emphasis on individualism in our society. The social aspect of what it means to be human is revealed in the natural inclination we have to seek social interaction and establish community. This awareness serves as a moral foundation for an attitude of solidarity with each other and leads to a dedication to social justice for everyone. Our Gospel commitment to Christ’s Kingdom of love, justice, and mercy always includes advocating and supporting fairness for all. God calls us to form community and to correct both the symptoms and causes of injustice that rip apart the solidarity of a community.

The Most Reverend George J. Lucas leads the Archdiocese of Omaha.

For other episodes in the visit our Archbishop George Lucas page

This programs is based on:

United-States-Catechism-for-2More information can be found here.

We wish to thank the USCCB for the permissions granted for use of relevant material used in this series.
Also we wish to thank Matt Wilkom for his vocal talents in this episode.


BTP#9 Heaven In Faith Day 5 Prayer 1 – Bl. Elizabeth of the Trinity w/Dr. Anthony Lilles

BTP-V9 “Heaven in Faith” Day 5 Prayer 1” Beginning to Pray w/ Dr. Anthony Lilles from Discerning Hearts on Vimeo.

You can listen only to the podcast if you prefer


Episode 9 Beginning to Pray: “Heaven in Faith” Day 3 Prayer 1 – “We will come to him and make our home in him”

From “Heaven in Faith” found in The Complete Works vol 1:

8. … “Each incident, each event, each suffering, as well as each joy, is a sacrament which gives God to it; so it no longer makes a distinction between these things; it surmounts them, goes beyond them to rest in its Master, above all things. It “exalts” Him high on the “mountain of its heart,” yes, “higher than His gifts, His consolation, higher than the sweetness that descends from Him.” “The property of love is never to seek self, to keep back nothing, but to give everything to the one it loves.” “Blessed the soul that loves” in truth; “the Lord has become its captive

Catholic Devotional Prayers and Novenas - Mp3 Audio Downloads and Text 8

We would like to offer heartfelt thanks to Miriam Gutierrez for providing for us “the voice” of Blessed Elizabeth for this series

For other episodes in the series visit the Discerning Hearts page for Dr. Anthony Lilles

Anthony Lilles, S.T.D. is an associate professor and the academic dean of Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo as well as the academic advisor for Juan Diego House of Priestly Formation for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. For over twenty years he served the Church in Northern Colorado where he joined and eventually served as dean of the founding faculty of Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Through the years, clergy, seminarians, religious and lay faithful have benefited from his lectures and retreat conferences on the Carmelite Doctors of the Church and the writings of Blessed Elisabeth of the Trinity.


Day 1 Novena to the Holy Spirit – Discerning Hearts

Novena to the Holy Spirit

Begin be reciting the following prayer…

O Holy Spirit, Divine Consoler!
I adore you as my True God.
I offer You my whole heart,
and I render You heartfelt thanks
for all the benefits You have bestowed upon the world.
You are the author of all supernatural gifts
and enriched the Blessed Virgin Mary,
the Mother of God,
with all favors,
I ask you to visit me by Your grace and Your love,
and grant me the favor
I so earnestly seek…

State your request here…

O Holy Spirit,
spirit of truth, come into our hearts:

DAY ONEpentecost-holy-spirit-desce

O Holy Spirit,
bestow upon us Your seven holy gifts.
Enlighten our understanding that we may know You.
Give us wisdom that Your will may be clear to us
and that we may accept it.
Grant us the gift of counsel
that we may always perceive what is right.
Fortify us that we may always be capable
of fulfilling Your Divine Will.
Inspire us with the spirit of learning
that we may be able to penetrate more deeply
into the truths that You have revealed.
Let our hearts be steeped in the spirit of childlikeness
that we may bring You joy.
Let us have proper fear of God
that we may never grieve You
or wander from the path of goodness. Give us the fulness of Your gifts
that we may glorify You.

Look with compassion upon us,

O Holy Spirit,
and grant us the favor we seek in this novena…

State your request here…

if it be in accordance with Your Holy Will.

Come, O Holy Spirit,
fill the hearts of your faithful,
and kindle in them the fire of Your love.


 For the complete novena visit :  The Discerning Hearts’ Holy Spirit Novena page

RC#2 – The Martyr’s Cup – The Resilient Church w/ Mike Aquilina

Mike Aquilina - Fathers of the Church and so much more... 5

Episode 2 – The Martyr’s Cup

But there was another dominant reality in the ancient Church. It is something that appears just as often in the archaeological record and in the paper trail of the early Christians. That something is martyrdom. Persecution.

Martyrdom occupied the attention of the first Christians because it was always a real possibility. Shortly after Christianity arrived in the city of Rome, the emperor Nero discovered that Christians could provide an almost unlimited supply of victims for his circus spectacles. The emperors needed to keep the city’s populace amused, and one way to do so was by providing spectacularly violent and bloody entertainment.

The Christians’ moral code made them none too popular with their neighbors, so the pagan Romans were more than willing to cheer as the Christians were doused with pitch and set on fire, or sent into the ring to battle hungry wild animals or armed gladiators. It was all in a day’s fun in ancient Rome. Over time, Nero’s perverted whims settled into laws and legal precedents, as later emperors issued further rulings on the Christian problem. Outside the law, mob violence against Christians was fairly common and rarely punished.

The Christians applied a certain term to their brothers and sisters who were persecuted and killed. They called them “martyrs”—which means, literally, “witnesses in a court of law.” And to the martyrs they accorded a reverence matched only by their reverence for the Eucharist.



Resilient-Church-1-1Pick up a copy of Mike’s book.

Also visit Mike’s “Discerning Hearts” page for more audio downloads and information!

ROHC-V4 The Suffering of Love – The Heart of Hope w/ Deacon James Keating Ph.D. – Video podcast

ROHC-V4 The Suffering of Love – The Heart of Hope w/ Deacon James Keating Ph.D. from Discerning Hearts on Vimeo.


Heart of Hope Part 4 – The healing hand of Christ, seeing the will of God, and how we suffer love. The tale of the two criminals on the cross next to Christ on Gologotha.

Deacon James Keating, PhD, the director of Theological Formation for the Institute for Priestly Formation, located at Creighton University, in Omaha, is making available to ”Discerning Hearts” and all who listen, his series of programs entitled “The Heart of Hope”.

This  series explores the work of suffering in the Christian life and how God can use it to transform the heart of the individual and the world.

You can obtain just the audio podcast, if you would prefer

The Second Meditation – Introduction to the Devout Life: Chapter 10 by St. Francis de Sales audio mp3 edition

Catholic Devotional Prayers and Novenas - Mp3 Audio Downloads and Text 10Introduction to the Devout Life
St. Francis de Sales

read by Omar F. A. Guiterrez

Chapter 10 – The Second Meditation :  

For the pdf containing the complete text and footnotes click here

Other audio meditations from the Introduction of the Devout Life

Of the End for which we were Created.

1. PLACE yourself before God.
2. Ask Him to inspire your heart.
1. God did not bring you into the world because He had any need of you, useless as you are; but solely that He might show forth His Goodness in you, giving you His Grace and Glory. And to this end He gave you understanding that you might know Him, memory that you might think of Him, a will that you might love Him, imagination that you might realise His mercies, sight that you might behold the marvels of His works, speech that you might praise Him, and so on with all your other faculties.
2. Being created and placed in the world for this intent, all contrary actions should be shunned and rejected, as also you should avoid as idle and superfluous whatever does not promote it.
3. Consider how unhappy they are who do not think of all this,—who live as though they were created only to build and plant, to heap up riches and amuse themselves with trifles.
Affections and Resolutions.
1. Humble yourself in that hitherto you have so little thought upon all this. Alas, my God, of what was I thinking when I did not think of Thee? what did I remember when I forgot Thee? what did I love when I loved Thee not? Alas, when I ought to have been feeding on the truth, I was but filling myself with vanity, and serving the world, which was made to serve me.
2. Abhor your past life. I renounce ye, O vain thoughts and useless cogitations, frivolous and hateful memories: I renounce all worthless friendships, all unprofitable efforts, and miserably ungrateful self-indulgence, all pitiful compliances.
3. Turn to God. Thou, my God and Saviour shalt henceforth be the sole object of my thoughts; no more will I give my mind to ideas which are displeasing to Thee. All the days of my life I will dwell upon the greatness of Thy Goodness, so lovingly poured out upon me. Thou shalt be henceforth the delight of my heart, the resting-place of all my affections. From this time forth I will forsake and abhor the vain pleasures and amusements, the empty pursuits which have absorbed my time;—the unprofitable ties which have bound my heart I will loosen henceforth, and to that end I will use such and such remedies.
1. Thank God, Who has made you for so gracious an end. Thou hast made me, O Lord, for Thyself, that I may eternally enjoy the immensity of Thy Glory; when shall I be worthy thereof, when shall I know how to bless Thee as I ought?
2. Offer. O Dearest Lord, I offer Thee all my affections and resolutions, with my whole heart and soul.
3. Pray. I entreat Thee, O God, that Thou wouldest accept my desires and longings, and give Thy Blessing to my soul, to enable me to fulfil them, through the Merits of Thy Dear Son’s Precious Blood shed upon the Cross for me.
OUR FATHER, etc. Gather your little spiritual bouquet.

Day 2 Novena to the Holy Spirit – Discerning Hearts

Novena to the Holy Spirit

holy-spirit-medium-sized-pi-300x300 (1)

Begin be reciting the following prayer…

O Holy Spirit, Divine Consoler!
I adore you as my True God.
I offer You my whole heart,
and I render You heartfelt thanks
for all the benefits You have bestowed upon the world.
You are the author of all supernatural gifts
and enriched the Blessed Virgin Mary,
the Mother of God,
with all favors,
I ask you to visit me by Your grace and Your love,
and grant me the favor
I so earnestly seek…

State your request here…

O Holy Spirit,
spirit of truth, come into our hearts:
shed the brightness of your light on all nations,
that they may be of one faith and pleasing to You.



pentecost51 (1)O Holy Spirit,
make me faithful in every thought,
and grant that I may always listen to your voice,
and watch for Your light,
and follow Your gracious inspirations.
I cling to You,
and give myself to You,
and ask You by Your compassion
to watch over me in my weakness.
Holding the pierced feet of Jesus,
looking at His Five Wounds,
trusting in His Precious Blood,
adoring His opened side and stricken heart,
I implore You adorable Spirit,
helper of my infirmity,
to keep me in Your grace,
now and always,
and grant us the favor we ask in this novena…

State your request here…

Come, O Holy Spirit,
fill the hearts of Your faithful,
and kindle in them the fire of Your love.


 For the complete novena visit :  The Discerning Hearts’ Holy Spirit Novena page

IP#299 Dr. Rodney Stark – Bearing False Witness on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

Dr. Rodney StarkOnce again, Dr. Rodney Stark, the author of the best-selling “The Rise of Christianity” brings clarity to history with his book “Bearing False Witness:  Debunking Centuries of Anti-Catholic History“!  A professor of social science and co-director of the Institute for Studies of Religion at Baylor University, Dr. Stark is a master of research and source analysis.  With his eagle’s eye, he assess the landscape of history and systematically debunks anti-Catholic “myths” one after another.  Whether he is untying the knot of the “Spanish Inquisition” or placing in proper perspective the motivation and actions of the Church in the various Crusades, he never fails to place before his readers an engaging presentation of the “truth”.  He remains one of our all-time favorite guests and authors…take a listen!

Bearing False WitnessYou can find the book here

Rodney Stark gives the last acceptable prejudice a sound thrashing and clears up a lot of confused history along the way. Give this fine book to anyone you know who’s been subjected to ‘social studies.’” —George Weigel, Distinguished Senior Fellow, Ethics and Public Policy Center

“Growing up Catholic in the United States is to hear a constant stream of stuff that, one’s experience shows, is just not true. Still I have always trusted that some unbiased non-Catholic scholar would one day look at the evidence (even its simple logic) again. Little did I imagine that this expected dispassionate historian would be so deeply informed, lucid, thorough, and blunt. Rodney Stark has done justice to neglected historical truth, and I am deeply grateful for his steady toughmindedness. His aim was to honor the truth, so now it remains for historians to look again, face his challenges, and come refreshed to their own verdicts.” —Michael Novak, winner of the Templeton Prize (1994), author of The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism

“A majestically argued, gorgeously written, and essential book by one of the truly indispensable minds of our time. Bearing False Witness is one more gift to history from Rodney Stark. It should in turn be given to and read by students and professors everywhere, whatever their beliefs.” —Mary Eberstadt, author of How the West Really Lost God and It’s Dangerous to Believe

#05 The Third Rule – The Discernment of Spirits /w Fr. Timothy Gallagher, OMV – Video Podcasts

#05 The Third Rule – The Discernment of Spirits /w Fr. Timothy Gallagher, OMV from Discerning Hearts on Vimeo.

BA6 - "Refuse to Accept Discouragement" - Begin Again: The Spiritual Legacy of Ven. Bruno Lanteri with Fr. Timothy Gallagher

Episode 5 -The Third Rule:

Of Spiritual Consolation. I call it consolation when some interior movement in the soul is caused, through which the soul comes to be inflamed with love of its Creator and Lord; and when it can in consequence love no created thing on the face of the earth in itself, but in the Creator of them all.

Likewise, when it sheds tears that move to love of its Lord, whether out of sorrow for one’s sins, or for the Passion of Christ our Lord, or because of other things directly connected with His service and praise.

Finally, I call consolation every increase of hope, faith and charity, and all interior joy which calls and attracts to heavenly things and to the salvation of one’s soul, quieting it and giving it peace in its Creator and Lord.

For the other episodes in this series check out Fr. Timothy Gallagher’s “Discerning Hearts” page

You can obtain just the audio podcast, if you would prefer