SCS8 – “Perfect Love and Perfect Union” – St. Catherine of Siena with Fr. Thomas McDermott O.P.

Fr. Thomas McDermott - Prayer and the Dominican Tradition 1

Episode 8 St. Catherine of Siena: Her Life and Teachings with Fr. Thomas McDermott

Fr. Thomas McDermott - Prayer and the Dominican Tradition 2

In this final episode, Fr. McDermott discuss the final step of the spiritual life which is actually comprised of two stages: “perfect love” and  “perfect union”. On the “Christ-Bridge” we find ourselves with St. Catherine at the “mouth” of Christ which corresponds to the first chapter of the “Song of Songs”.  Fr. McDermott expands on St. Catherine’s teachings on the role we have as sons and daughters of the Father.

Fr. McDermott then offers a summation of St. Catherine’s teachings as a conclusion for our discussions.

Fr. Thomas McDermott, OP is Regent of Studies for the Dominican Province of St. Albert the Great and is the author of “Catherine of Siena: Spiritual Development in Her Life and Teaching” (Paulist, 2008) and “Filled with all the Fullness of God: An Introduction to Catholic Spirituality”. He obtained a doctorate in spiritual theology from the Angelicum and taught for several years at Kenrick-Glennon Seminary in St. Louis. He crrently serves as pastor at St. Vincent Ferrer, in Chicago, IL.

 

Prayers for Spiritual Healing with Msgr. Esseff – Mp3 audio prayer and text – Discerning Hearts

Msgr John Esseff offers the following prayers.  

EXAMINATION OF CONSCIENCE

FORGIVENESS PRAYER

The following prayer covers most of the significant areas of forgiveness. Often, such a prayer will bring to mind other areas that need forgiveness. Let the Holy Spirit move freely and guide your mind to persons or groups that you need to forgive. This is especially useful before confession.

Lord Jesus Christ, I ask today to forgive everyone in my life. I know that You will give me the strength to forgive and I thank You that You love me more than I love myself and want my happiness more than I desire it for myself.

Father, I forgive Your for the times death has come into my family, hard times, financial difficulties, or that I thought were punishments sent by You and people said “It’s God;s will,” and I became bitter and resentful toward You. Purify my heart and mind today.

Lord, I forgive MYSELF for my sins, faults and failings, for all that is bad in myself or that I think is bad, I forgive myself. For any delvings in superstition, using ouija boards, horoscopes, going to seances, using fortune telling or wearing lucky charms, I reject all that superstition and choose You alone as my Lord and Savior. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit.

I further forgive myself for taking Your name in vain, not worshipping You by attending church, for hurting my parents, getting drunk, for sins against purity, bad books, bad movies, fornication, adultery, homosexuality. You have forgiven me, today I forgive myself.

Also for abortion, stealing, lying, defrauding, hurting people’s reputation, I forgive myself.

I truly forgive my MOTHER, I forgive her for all the times she hurt me, she resented me, she was angry with me and for all the times she prefered my brothers and sisters to me. I forgive her for the times she told me I was dumb, ugly, stupid, the worst of the children or that I cost the family a lot of money. For the times she told me I was unwanted, an accident, a mistake or not what she expected, I forgive her.

I forgive my FATHER. I forgive him for any non-support, any lack of love, affection or attention. I forgive him for any lack of time, for not giving me his companionship, for his drinking, arguing and fighting with my mother or the other children. For his severe punishments, for desertion, for being away from home, for divorcing my mother or for any running around, I do forgive him.

Read morePrayers for Spiritual Healing with Msgr. Esseff – Mp3 audio prayer and text – Discerning Hearts

IP#348 Colleen Carroll Campbell – The Heart of Perfection on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor podcast

 

What a delight it is to talk once again with Colleen Carroll Campbell! Her new book, “The Heart of Perfection: How the Saints Taught Me to Trade My Dream of Perfect for God’s” is marvelous!  Colleen never disappoints.  She shines the light on “perfectionism” an affliction many us may be suffering from and may not even realize it and provides the antidote found in the lives of some her great friends… the SAINTS!

You can find the book here

From the book description:

“This book is absolutely excellent and meets a very present need of many people. I wish it to be read by everyone! Not always consciously, we are marked by a certain perfectionism, the feeling that to deserve God’s love and the love of others we must be perfect beings and follow a faultless journey to God. This perfectionism may seem generous and express the commitment to be good Christians, but it is actually disastrous. It prevents us from achieving true perfection, not the one we imagine, but the one God wants for us… From her personal experience, from the example of the saints, from her meditation on Scripture, Colleen shows us with great spiritual truth and psychological sharpness how this perfectionism manifests itself, its consequences, and how to get rid of it to enter into the true freedom of the children of God. One thing that gives me great joy in this book is to see how a woman, wife, and mother, engaged in a very active professional life, living in the complicated context of our society, can reach such an authentic experience of God and deep, spiritual wisdom – something that may have been thought to be reserved for some particular vocations, such as religious life. This is an immense encouragement to lay people today who sometimes think that struggling with the problems of everyday family life may be an impediment to progress in the spiritual life. Colleen shows us that it’s the opposite, and we should be very grateful to her.”
  Author: Fr. Jacques Philippe, internationally bestselling author of nine books published in 24 languages, including Searching for and Maintaining Peace, Interior Freedom, and Time for God.

RN21 – “Evangelization and Social Doctrine” the Compendium of Social Doctrine Chap 2 Section 1 – Regnum Novum w/Deacon Omar Gutierrez Discerning Hearts Podcast

Episode 21- Regnum Novum: Bringing forth the New Evangelization through Catholic Social Teaching with Deacon Omar Gutierrez – We begin the study of the “Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church” Chapter 2 Section 1

CHAPTER TWO
THE CHURCH’S MISSION AND SOCIAL DOCTRINE

I. EVANGELIZATION AND SOCIAL DOCTRINE
a. 
The Church, God’s dwelling place with men and women
b. 
Enriching and permeating society with the Gospel
c. 
Social doctrine, evangelization and human promotion
d. 
The rights and duties of the Church

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel Day 9 – Discerning Hearts podcast


O Most Holy Mother of Mount Carmel,
when asked by a saint to grant privileges to the family of Carmel,
you gave assurance of your Motherly love
and help to those faithful to you and to your Son.
Behold us, your children.

We glory in wearing your holy habit,
which makes us members of your family of Carmel,
through which we shall have your powerful protection in life,
at death and even after death.

Look down with love,
O Gate of Heaven,
on all those now in their last agony!

Look down graciously,
O Virgin, Flower of Carmel,
on all those in need of help!

Look down mercifully,
O Mother of our Savior,
on all those who do not know
that they are numbered among your children.

Look down tenderly,
O Queen of All Saints,
on the poor souls!
(State your request here…)

Recite the following prayers…

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Glory Be…

Our Lady of Mount Carmel,
pray for us.

 

CA-6 – “The Journey of the Mind into God” St. Bonaventure – Christian Apologetics with Dr. R. R. Reno Discerning Hearts Podcast

Episode 6 – St. Bonaventure – The Journey of the Mind into God

Academic Theology and Contemplative Prayer

“The Journey of the Mind into God” –  3 basic phases

1.  Seeing God in and through the World  (looking outward) (stage 1 & 2) (The Nave)

2.  Seeing God in and through the Self  (looking inward)(stage 3 & 4) (The Choir)

3.  Seeing God in and through  God Himself  (looking upward)  (stage 5 & 6) (The Altar)

…and then (stage 7)The Sacrament Himself

Here is the PDF for the work of St. Bonaventure – “The Journey of the Mind into God”

“Christian Apologetics with Dr. R. R. Reno” explores numerous facets of faith and reason in the life of the Church and the world. Grounded on the work of giants, such as St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Bonaventure, Blessed John Newman, St. John Paul II, G. K. Chesterton, Blaise Pascal and Stephen Barr, Dr. Reno helps us to open our minds to make the journey to our hearts.

R. R. Reno is the editor at First Things: A Journal of Religion, Culture, and Public Life, and Professor of Theology, currently on leave from Creighton University. His theological work has been published in many academic journals. Essays and opinion pieces on religion, public life, contemporary culture, and current events have appeared in Commentary, and the Washington Post. In Fighting the Noonday Devil Reno suggests that putting ourselves at the disposal of what is real is what trains us for true piety. His other recent books include Genesis: Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible and Sanctified Vision: An Introduction to Early Christian Interpretation of the Bible.

St. Bonaventure Novena Day 9 – Discerning Hearts podcast

St. Bonaventure Novena Day 9

St. Bonaventure you have said:

Grant that my soul may hunger after Thee,
the Bread of Angels, the refreshment of holy souls, our daily and super-substantial bread, having all sweetness and savor and every delightful taste.

May my heart ever hunger after and feed upon Thee,
Whom the angels desire to look upon, and may my inmost soul be filled with the sweetness of Thy savor;

may it ever thirst for Thee, the fountain of life, the fountain of wisdom and knowledge, the fountain of eternal light, the torrent of pleasure, the fullness of the house of God; may it ever compass Thee, seek Thee, find Thee, run to Thee, come up to Thee, meditate on Thee, speak of Thee, and do all for the praise and glory of Thy name, with humility and discretion, with love and delight, with ease and affection, with perseverance to the end;

and be Thou alone ever my hope, my entire confidence, my riches, my delight, my pleasure, my joy, my rest and tranquility, my peace, my sweetness, my food, my refreshment, my refuge, my help, my wisdom, my portion, my possession, my treasure; in Whom may my mind and my heart be ever fixed and firm and rooted immovably.

Amen.

Dear St. Bonaventure
Cardinal, Bishop and Doctor of the Church,
you chose a life that embraced mortification and great humiliation.
Choosing to serve those individuals who were rejected and sick you risked illness for yourself.
You made your life a continuous prayer and spent hours meditating on the wounds of Christ.
Please pray for us that we may have a sincere and humble heart.
Pray that we may not lose sight of Jesus’ wounds and thus walk on the straight path to eternal salvation.

All-powerful Father,
may we who celebrate the feast of St. Bonaventure
always benefit from his wisdom
and follow the example of his love.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel Day 8 – Discerning Hearts podcast


You give us hope,
O Mother of Mercy,
that through your Scapular promise
we might quickly pass through the fires of purgatory
to the Kingdom of your Son.
Be our comfort and our hope.

Grant that our hope may not be in vain but that,
ever faithful to your Son and to you,
we may speedily enjoy after death
the blessed company of Jesus and the saints.
(State your request here…)

Recite the following prayers…

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Glory Be…

Our Lady of Mount Carmel,
pray for us.

BKL95 – “Why Do You Worry? ”– Building a Kingdom of Love with Msgr. John Esseff

Msgr. Esseff reflects on Matthew Chap 6:24-34 and asks the question “Why do you worry?” He shares several compelling stories, including a poignant encounter with a woman, who, surrounded by her husband, children, mother, and sister, prepares for death.

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,
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 wildflowers 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.”

 

Msgr. John A. Esseff is a Roman Catholic priest in the Diocese of Scranton.  He was ordained on May 30th. 1953, by the late Bishop William J. Hafey, D.D. at St. Peter’s Cathedral in Scranton, PA.  Msgr. Esseff served a retreat director and confessor to St. Blessed Mother Teresa.    He continues to offer direction and retreats for the sisters of the missionaries of charity around the world.  Msgr. Esseff encountered St.  Padre Pio,  who would become a spiritual father to him.  He has lived in areas around the world, serving in the Pontifical missions, a Catholic organization established by St. Pope John Paul II to bring the Good News to the world especially to the poor.   He continues to serve as a retreat leader and director to bishops, priests and sisters and seminarians and other religious leaders around the world.   

 

St. Bonaventure Novena Day 8 – Discerning Hearts podcast

St. Bonaventure Novena Day 8

St. Bonaventure you have said:

Love is sometimes formed by sight, sometimes by hearing, sometimes by touch, sometimes by fellowship. We love the person in whom we see the good, or from whom we hear the good, or in whom we have experienced the good, or with whom we have had good fellowship. In all these ways the Saviour reforms the charity of his disciples on the day of resurrection which had been damaged in the time of the Passion. He gave himself to the disciples so that they could know him by sight (which is why it is said that ”he stood in their midst” and shortly afterwards, “he showed them his hands and side” by hearing, when he greeted them (thus it says “Peace be with you”); by touch, when he invited them to touch him (“Touch and see, because a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have”); by fellowship, when he asked for something to eat (“Do you have something here to eat?”, Lk 24.41)

Dear St. Bonaventure
Cardinal, Bishop and Doctor of the Church,
you chose a life that embraced mortification and great humiliation.
Choosing to serve those individuals who were rejected and sick you risked illness for yourself.
You made your life a continuous prayer and spent hours meditating on the wounds of Christ.
Please pray for us that we may have a sincere and humble heart.
Pray that we may not lose sight of Jesus’ wounds and thus walk on the straight path to eternal salvation.

All-powerful Father,
may we who celebrate the feast of St. Bonaventure
always benefit from his wisdom
and follow the example of his love.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

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