IP#318 Fr. John Burns – Lift Up Your Heart on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor podcast



“Lift Up Your Heart: A 10-Day Personal Retreat with St. Francis de Sales” is outstanding.  A wonderful “introduction to the devout life”… literally!  Fr. John Burns breaks open up the teachings of the great spiritual director and Doctor of the Church St. Francis de Sales in a wonderfully fresh new way.  Very practical and perfect for meditation during prayer times during the day, this is a mini-retreat we can all benefit from.

You can find the book here

From the book description:

This practical book goes right to the heart of helping you kick the habit of floating along on your spiritual journey to start actively pursuing holiness and devotion to God. During the course of the retreat, you ll learn the basics of forming a daily prayer routine, including how to offer yourself to God, meditate on his love, and maintain peace in the face of suffering and clarity in the midst of temptation.

The meditations will help you:

  • Adopt gratitude as a daily prayer practice.
  • Examine and reorder your priorities and relationships to better reflect your love for God.
  • Discern between good and evil in your life.
  • Desire to love and serve as Jesus did.

In a very real sense, Burns helps you take St. Francis de Sales as your spiritual director for ten days. As you do so, you’ll feel God’s fatherly love and restart your faith life, equipped with the tools to connect with God and live for heaven now.

Day 3 St. Anthony of the Desert Novena – Discerning Hearts Podcast

St. Anthony of the Desert Novena Day 3

Day 3

From the Sayings of St. Anthony of the Desert:

“When the demons see Christians, specially the monks, working joyfully and growing in the spirit, first they fight them with temptation, and by placing obstacles to hinder their growth, trying to inject evil thoughts in their minds; but there is no reason for fear from their temptations because their offenses fail instantly by prayer and fasting, especially if you have had armed yourself with faith and the sign of the cross.”

 

Dear God,

St Anthony of the Desert accepted your call to renounce the world and to love you above all things.
He faithfully served you in the solitude of the desert by fasting, prayer, humility and good works.
In the Sign of the Cross, he triumphed over the devil.
Through his intercession, may we learn to love you better; with all our hearts, all our souls, all our minds, all our strength and to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.
St Anthony, great and powerful saint, intercede for us also for this special request (mention your request).
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with God the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Amen

St. Anthony of the Desert, pray for us.

 

The sayings  of St. Anthony us, as translated by the late Sr Benedicta Ward SLG , are taken from her  The Sayings of the Desert Fathers:

Day 2 St. Anthony of the Desert Novena – Discerning Hearts Podcast

St. Anthony of the Desert Novena Day 2


St. Anthony of the Desert Hermit
Day 2

From the Sayings of St. Anthony of the Desert:

Someone asked Abba Anthony, “What must one do in order to please God?” The old man replied, “Pay attention to what I tell you: whoever you may be, always have God before your eyes, whatever you do, do it according to the testimony of the holy Scriptures; in whatever place you live, do not easily leave it. Keep these three precepts and you will be saved.”

 

Dear God,

St Anthony of the Desert accepted your call to renounce the world and to love you above all things.
He faithfully served you in the solitude of the desert by fasting, prayer, humility and good works.
In the Sign of the Cross, he triumphed over the devil.
Through his intercession, may we learn to love you better; with all our hearts, all our souls, all our minds, all our strength and to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.
St Anthony, great and powerful saint, intercede for us also for this special request (mention your request).
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with God the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.

Amen

St. Anthony of the Desert, pray for us.

 

The sayings  of St. Anthony us, as translated by the late Sr Benedicta Ward SLG , are taken from her  The Sayings of the Desert Fathers

How Can You Be the Light of Christ? -The Epiphany – Building a Kingdom of Love w/ Msgr. John Esseff

Do people see Christ in you?

Epiphany Msgr. John Esseff Light of Christ

Msgr. Esseff reflects on the meaning of the “Epiphany” and how we can manifest the light of Christ to the world.  He shares how the saints are the stars that show us the way.

Reading 1 IS 60:1-6

Rise up in splendor, Jerusalem!  Your light has come,
the glory of the Lord shines upon you.
See, darkness covers the earth,
and thick clouds cover the peoples;
but upon you the LORD shines,
and over you appears his glory.
Nations shall walk by your light,
and kings by your shining radiance.
Raise your eyes and look about;
they all gather and come to you:
your sons come from afar,
and your daughters in the arms of their nurses.

Then you shall be radiant at what you see,
your heart shall throb and overflow,
for the riches of the sea shall be emptied out before you,
the wealth of nations shall be brought to you.
Caravans of camels shall fill you,
dromedaries from Midian and Ephah;
all from Sheba shall come
bearing gold and frankincense,
and proclaiming the praises of the LORD.

Msgr. John A. Esseff is a Roman Catholic priest in the Diocese of Scranton.  Msgr. Esseff served as a retreat director and confessor to St. Teresa of Calcutta.    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 Pope St. 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.    

 

 

Day 1 St. Anthony of the Desert Novena – Discerning Hearts Podcast

St. Anthony of the Desert Novena Day 1

St. Anthony of the Desert Hermit Abba

Day 1

From the Sayings of St. Anthony of the Desert:

When the holy Abba Anthony lived in the desert he was beset by acedia (lack of care, sloth), and attacked by many sinful thoughts. He said to God, “Lord, I want to be saved but these thoughts do not leave me alone; what shall I do in my affliction? How can I be saved?” A short while afterward, when he got up to go out, Anthony saw a man like himself sitting at his work, getting up from his work to pray, then sitting down again and plaiting a rope, then getting up again to pray. It was an angel of the Lord sent to correct and reassure him. He heard the angel saying to him, “Do this and you will be saved.” At these words, Anthony was filled with joy and courage. He did this, and he was saved.

Dear God,

St Anthony of the Desert accepted your call to renounce the world and to love you above all things.
He faithfully served you in the solitude of the desert by fasting, prayer, humility and good works.
In the Sign of the Cross, he triumphed over the devil.
Through his intercession, may we learn to love you better; with all our hearts, all our souls, all our minds, all our strength and to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.
St Anthony, great and powerful saint, intercede for us also for this special request (mention your request).
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with God the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.

Amen

St. Anthony of the Desert, pray for us.

 

The sayings  of St. Anthony us, as translated by the late Sr Benedicta Ward SLG , are taken from her  The Sayings of the Desert Fathers

WM39 – Living the Reality of the Christmas Season – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

Catholic Spiritual Formation - Catholic Spiritual Direction 3

Episode 39 – Living the Reality of the Christmas Season – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

Archbishop Lucas and Kris McGregor discuss living the joys and challenges of the Christmas Season authentically.

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

The Christmas mystery

525 Jesus was born in a humble stable, into a poor family. 202 Simple shepherds were the first witnesses to this event. In this poverty heaven’s glory was made manifest. 203 The Church never tires of singing the glory of this night:

 

The Virgin today brings into the world the Eternal
And the earth offers a cave to the Inaccessible.
The angels and shepherds praise him
And the magi advance with the star,
For you are born for us, Little Child, God eternal! 204

 

526 To become a child in relation to God is the condition for entering the kingdom. 205 For this, we must humble ourselves and become little. Even more: to become “children of God” we must be “born from above” or “born of God”. 206 Only when Christ is formed in us will the mystery of Christmas be fulfilled in us. 207 Christmas is the mystery of this “marvellous exchange”:

 

O marvellous exchange! Man’s Creator has become man, born of the Virgin. We have been made sharers in the divinity of Christ who humbled himself to share our humanity. 208

 

Notes:

202 Cf. Lk 2:61.203 Cf. Lk 2:8-20.

204 Kontakion of Romanos the Melodist.

205 Cf. Mt 18:3-4.

206 Jn 3:7; 1:13; 1:12; cf. Mt 23:12.

207 Cf. Gal 4:19.

208 LH, Antiphon I of Evening Prayer for January 1st.

 

For more episodes in this series, visit the

Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

A Christmas Novena Day 9 – Mp3 audio and Text – Discerning Hearts Podcast



Day 9 – Life Eternal

O Lord, infant Jesus, bring us to live eternal with You! Jesus, your nativity was not without purpose. Your purpose was to bring us to You. We pray that you will bring us to Life Eternal with you this Christmas.

Divine Infant,
after the wonders of Your birth in Bethlehem,
You wished to extend Your infinite mercy to the whole world
by calling the Wise Men by heavenly inspiration to Your crib,
which was in this way changed into a royal throne.
You graciously received those holy men
who were obedient to the Divine call
and hastened to Your feet.
They recognized and worshipped You as Prince of Peace,
the Redeemer of mankind,
and the very Son of God.

Show us also Your goodness and almighty power.
Enlighten our minds,
strengthen our wills,
and inflame our hearts to know You,
to serve You,
and to love You in this life,
that we may merit to find our joy in You eternally in the life to come.

Jesus, most powerful Child,
We implore You again to help us
with the intentions we hold in the depths of our hearts.

Divine Child, great omnipotent God,
I implore through Your most Holy Mother’s most powerful intercession,
and through the boundless mercy of Your omnipotence as God,
for a favorable answer to my prayer during this Novena.
Grant us the grace of possessing You eternally
with Mary and Joseph
and of adoring You with Your holy angels and saints.
Amen.

A Christmas Novena Day 8 – Mp3 audio and Text – Discerning Hearts Podcast



Day 8 – Holiness

O Lord, infant Jesus, inspire us to be repulsed by sin! You, Lord, are holy but we are not. We pray that you will make us holy and keep us from temptation this Christmas.

Divine Infant,
after the wonders of Your birth in Bethlehem,
You wished to extend Your infinite mercy to the whole world
by calling the Wise Men by heavenly inspiration to Your crib,
which was in this way changed into a royal throne.
You graciously received those holy men
who were obedient to the Divine call
and hastened to Your feet.
They recognized and worshipped You as Prince of Peace,
the Redeemer of mankind,
and the very Son of God.

Show us also Your goodness and almighty power.
Enlighten our minds,
strengthen our wills,
and inflame our hearts to know You,
to serve You,
and to love You in this life,
that we may merit to find our joy in You eternally in the life to come.

Jesus, most powerful Child,
We implore You again to help us
with the intentions we hold in the depths of our hearts.

Divine Child, great omnipotent God,
I implore through Your most Holy Mother’s most powerful intercession,
and through the boundless mercy of Your omnipotence as God,
for a favorable answer to my prayer during this Novena.
Grant us the grace of possessing You eternally
with Mary and Joseph
and of adoring You with Your holy angels and saints.
Amen.

A Christmas Novena Day 7 – Mp3 audio and Text – Discerning Hearts Podcast



Day 7 – Forgiveness

O Lord, infant Jesus, move us to forgive others as you forgive us! Your Divine Mercy is unending! We pray for Your Divine Mercy on us and that we may participate in Your mercy by forgiving others this Christmas.

Divine Infant,
after the wonders of Your birth in Bethlehem,
You wished to extend Your infinite mercy to the whole world
by calling the Wise Men by heavenly inspiration to Your crib,
which was in this way changed into a royal throne.
You graciously received those holy men
who were obedient to the Divine call
and hastened to Your feet.
They recognized and worshipped You as Prince of Peace,
the Redeemer of mankind,
and the very Son of God.

Show us also Your goodness and almighty power.
Enlighten our minds,
strengthen our wills,
and inflame our hearts to know You,
to serve You,
and to love You in this life,
that we may merit to find our joy in You eternally in the life to come.

Jesus, most powerful Child,
We implore You again to help us
with the intentions we hold in the depths of our hearts.

Divine Child, great omnipotent God,
I implore through Your most Holy Mother’s most powerful intercession,
and through the boundless mercy of Your omnipotence as God,
for a favorable answer to my prayer during this Novena.
Grant us the grace of possessing You eternally
with Mary and Joseph
and of adoring You with Your holy angels and saints.
Amen.

A Christmas Novena Day 6 – Mp3 audio and Text – Discerning Hearts Podcast


Day 6 – Peace

O Lord, infant Jesus, give us Your peace! You are the Prince of Peace and the ultimate fulfillment of your incarnation brings us to you in heaven where peace will come to perfection. We pray for peace this Christmas.

Divine Infant,
after the wonders of Your birth in Bethlehem,
You wished to extend Your infinite mercy to the whole world
by calling the Wise Men by heavenly inspiration to Your crib,
which was in this way changed into a royal throne.
You graciously received those holy men
who were obedient to the Divine call
and hastened to Your feet.
They recognized and worshipped You as Prince of Peace,
the Redeemer of mankind,
and the very Son of God.

Show us also Your goodness and almighty power.
Enlighten our minds,
strengthen our wills,
and inflame our hearts to know You,
to serve You,
and to love You in this life,
that we may merit to find our joy in You eternally in the life to come.

Jesus, most powerful Child,
We implore You again to help us
with the intentions we hold in the depths of our hearts.

Divine Child, great omnipotent God,
I implore through Your most Holy Mother’s most powerful intercession,
and through the boundless mercy of Your omnipotence as God,
for a favorable answer to my prayer during this Novena.
Grant us the grace of possessing You eternally
with Mary and Joseph
and of adoring You with Your holy angels and saints.
Amen.