What it means to “put on Christ” – Building a Kingdom of Love w/ Msgr. John Esseff Discerning Hearts podcast

Msgr. Esseff reflects on St. Paul’s letter to the Ephesians Chapter 4 v. 20 -24:

22 Put off your old nature which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful lusts, 23 and be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24 and put on the new nature, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. – RCVCE

Msgr. John A. Esseff is a Roman Catholic priest in the Diocese of Scranton. He was ordained on May 30, 1953, by the late Bishop William J. Hafey, D.D. at St. Peter’s Cathedral in Scranton, PA. 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 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.

“How He Cares For His Flock”– Building a Kingdom of Love with Msgr. John Esseff Podcast

Msgr. Esseff reflects on how Jesus cares for His flock today.  Who fulfills the role of the “shepherd” today in the diocese, in the parish, in the homes?

Gospel Mk 6:30-34

The apostles gathered together with Jesus
and reported all they had done and taught.
He said to them,
“Come away by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.”
People were coming and going in great numbers,
and they had no opportunity even to eat.
So they went off in the boat by themselves to a deserted place.
People saw them leaving and many came to know about it.
They hastened there on foot from all the towns
and arrived at the place before them.

When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd,
his heart was moved with pity for them,
for they were like sheep without a shepherd;
and he began to teach them many things.

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. Msgr. Esseff assisted the founders of the Institute for Priestly Formation and continues to serve as a spiritual director for the Institute. He continues to serve as a retreat leader and director to bishops, priests and sisters and seminarians, and other religious leaders around the world.

 

The Identity of the Christian – Building a Kingdom of Love with Msgr. John Esseff – Discerning Hearts Podcast

Msgr. Esseff reflects on the Christian identity.  Before the world was made, He chose us.  Who are we?  What does that mean for our lives and the life of the world?

Reading 2 Eph 1:3-14

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who has blessed us in Christ
with every spiritual blessing in the heavens,
as he chose us in him, before the foundation of the world,
to be holy and without blemish before him.
In love, he destined us for adoption to himself through Jesus Christ,
in accord with the favor of his will,
for the praise of the glory of his grace
that he granted us in the beloved.
In him, we have redemption by his blood,
the forgiveness of transgressions,
in accord with the riches of his grace that he lavished upon us.
In all wisdom and insight, he has made known to us
the mystery of his will in accord with his favor
that he set forth in him as a plan for the fullness of times,
to sum up all things in Christ, in heaven, and on earth.In him, we were also chosen,
destined in accord with the purpose of the One
who accomplishes all things according to the intention of his will,
so that we might exist for the praise of his glory,
we who first hoped in Christ.
In him, you also, who have heard the word of truth,
the gospel of your salvation, and have believed in him,
were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit,
which is the first installment of our inheritance
toward redemption as God’s possession, to the praise of his glory.”

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. 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. Msgr. Esseff assisted the founders of the Institute for Priestly Formation and continues to serve as a spiritual director for the Institute. He continues to serve as a retreat leader and director to bishops, priests and sisters and seminarians, and other religious leaders.

 

CWC8 – The Wellsprings of Prayer – Communion with Christ with Deacon James Keating – Discerning Hearts Podcast

Episode 8 – Communion with Christ – Practical Prayer – The “wellsprings”  where Christ awaits us.  Responding at the moment when the subtle interior movements of the Holy Spirit calls to us.  The Word of God becomes a place of encounter. The danger of  Scripture becoming all academic. People are converted when the Word approaches them as living.  The liturgy is also a place of encounter.  The heart is an “altar” in the liturgy.

Deacon James Keating, Ph.D., is a professor of Spiritual Theology and serves as a spiritual director at Kenrick Glennon Seminary in St. Louis, MO. 

Check out Deacon Keating’s “Discerning Heart” page

Deacon Keating is also the author of:


You can find the book here.

From the book description:

The book addresses their mutual dedication to remain with Christ in prayer even in the service of parishioners. Once prayer finds a place in the heart, compassion grows for those who look for God “like sheep without a shepherd.” Through interior prayerfulness, clerical unity in ministry can be better ensured Remain in Me is for priests and deacons to use as prayer, on retreat, or during the holy seasons of Lent and Advent.

 

 

BKL 260 – Corpus Christi with Msgr. John Esseff – Building a Kingdom podcast

Msgr. Esseff reflects on the teaching of Jesus found in John Chapter 6 for the great feast of Corpus Christi.  He discusses the true presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.  The tragedy becomes when we look upon the Blessed Sacrament as a “something” instead of a “Someone”.

From the NAB  John Chapter 6

The Bread of Life Discourse.22* The next day, the crowd that remained across the sea saw that there had been only one boat there, and that Jesus had not gone along with his disciples in the boat, but only his disciples had left.23* Other boats came from Tiberias near the place where they had eaten the bread when the Lord gave thanks.24When the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they themselves got into boats and came to Capernaum looking for Jesus.25And when they found him across the sea they said to him, “Rabbi, when did you get here?”26Jesus answered them and said, “Amen, amen, I say to you, you are looking for me not because you saw signs but because you ate the loaves and were filled.27Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures for eternal life,*which the Son of Man will give you. For on him the Father, God, has set his seal.”l28So they said to him, “What can we do to accomplish the works of God?”29Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in the one he sent.”30So they said to him, “What sign can you do, that we may see and believe in you? What can you do?m31* Our ancestors ate manna in the desert, as it is written:n

‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’”

32So Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave the bread from heaven; my Father gives you the true bread from heaven.o33For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”

34p So they said to him, “Sir, give us this bread always.”35* Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst.q36But I told you that although you have seen [me], you do not believe.r37Everything that the Father gives me will come to me, and I will not reject anyone who comes to me,38because I came down from heaven not to do my own will but the will of the one who sent me.s39And this is the will of the one who sent me, that I should not lose anything of what he gave me, but that I should raise it [on] the last day.t40For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have eternal life, and I shall raise him [on] the last day.”u

41The Jews murmured about him because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven,”42and they said, “Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph? Do we not know his father and mother? Then how can he say, ‘I have come down from heaven’?”v43Jesus answered and said to them, “Stop murmuring* among yourselves.w44No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him, and I will raise him on the last day.45It is written in the prophets:

‘They shall all be taught by God.’

Everyone who listens to my Father and learns from him comes to me.x46Not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God; he has seen the Father.y47Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life.48I am the bread of life.49Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died;z50this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die.51I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.”a

52The Jews quarreled among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us [his] flesh to eat?”53Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you.54Whoever eats* my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day.55For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink.56Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him.57Just as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me.b58This is the bread that came down from heaven. Unlike your ancestors who ate and still died, whoever eats this bread will live forever.”59These things he said while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum.

The Words of Eternal Life.

Msgr. John A. Esseff is a Roman Catholic priest in the Diocese of Scranton.  He was ordained on May 30, 1953, by the late Bishop William J. Hafey, D.D. at St. Peter’s Cathedral in Scranton, PA.  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 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.   

 

CWC5 – Ask, Seek, Knock – Communion with Christ: Practical Prayer w/ Deacon James Keating – Discerning Hearts Podcast


Episode 5- Communion with Christ – Practical Prayer –  ” How did I ever live without prayer?”  A sustained communion with Christ is the beginning of heaven.  “Ask..seek…knock”.  Are you knocking to receive a relationship or are you knocking to get more stuff?  Are you seeking to surrender and entrust or are you seeking to satisfy more of a passing desire or mood?  Even in our coming to prayer Jesus wants to purify our motive for doing so.  The challenge of entering into deep prayer leads to the great maturity of prayer.

Deacon James Keating, Ph.D., is a professor of Spiritual Theology and serves as a spiritual director at Kenrick Glennon Seminary in St. Louis, MO. 

Check out Deacon Keating’s “Discerning Heart” page

Deacon Keating is also the author of:


You can find the book here.

From the book description:

The book addresses their mutual dedication to remain with Christ in prayer even in the service of parishioners. Once prayer finds a place in the heart, compassion grows for those who look for God “like sheep without a shepherd.” Through interior prayerfulness, clerical unity in ministry can be better ensured Remain in Me is for priests and deacons to use as prayer, on retreat, or during the holy seasons of Lent and Advent.

 

CWC3 – Praying Always – Communion with Christ: Practical Prayer w/ Deacon James Keating – Discerning Hearts Podcast

Episode 3- Communion with Christ – Practical Prayer –  Jesus is the primary teacher of prayer.  How can we pray “always”?  How do we become “prayer”?  Jesus was conscious that all things flow from the Father. He teaches us how to pray to the Father.  Deacon Keating speaks of praying in the name of Jesus and “receiving” God in our hearts.

Deacon James Keating, Ph.D., is a professor of Spiritual Theology and serves as a spiritual director at Kenrick Glennon Seminary in St. Louis, MO. 

Check out Deacon Keating’s “Discerning Heart” page

Deacon Keating is also the author of:


You can find the book here.

From the book description:

The book addresses their mutual dedication to remain with Christ in prayer even in the service of parishioners. Once prayer finds a place in the heart, compassion grows for those who look for God “like sheep without a shepherd.” Through interior prayerfulness, clerical unity in ministry can be better ensured Remain in Me is for priests and deacons to use as prayer, on retreat, or during the holy seasons of Lent and Advent.

 

DC36 St. Catherine of Siena pt 1– The Doctors of the Church: The Charism of Wisdom w/ Dr. Matthew Bunson

 
Dr. Matthew Bunson discusses the life, times and teachings of St. Catherine of Siena

  1. Born: March 17, 1347, Siena, Italy
  2. Died: April 29, 1380, Rome
  3. Nationality: Italian

For more on St. Catherine of Siena and her teachings visit her Discerning Hearts page

From Vatican.va, an excerpt from the teachings of Pope Benedict XVI

From the General Audience on St. Catherine of Siena

Today I would like to talk to you about a woman who played an eminent role in the history of the Church: St Catherine of Siena. The century in which she lived — the 14th — was a troubled period in the life of the Church and throughout the social context of Italy and Europe. Yet, even in the most difficult times, the Lord does not cease to bless his People, bringing forth Saints who give a jolt to minds and hearts, provoking conversion and renewal.Fr. Thomas McDermott - Prayer and the Dominican Tradition 2

Catherine is one of these and still today speaks to us and impels us to walk courageously toward holiness to be ever more fully disciples of the Lord.

Born in Siena in 1347, into a very large family, she died in Rome in 1380. When Catherine was 16 years old, motivated by a vision of St Dominic, she entered the Third Order of the Dominicans, the female branch known as the Mantellate. While living at home, she confirmed her vow of virginity made privately when she was still an adolescent and dedicated herself to prayer, penance and works of charity, especially for the benefit of the sick.

When the fame of her holiness spread, she became the protagonist of an intense activity of spiritual guidance for people from every walk of life: nobles and politicians, artists and ordinary people, consecrated men and women and religious, including Pope Gregory xi who was living at Avignon in that period and whom she energetically and effectively urged to return to Rome.

She travelled widely to press for the internal reform of the Church and to foster peace among the States. It was also for this reason that Venerable Pope John Paul ii chose to declare her Co-Patroness of Europe: may the Old Continent never forget the Christian roots that are at the origin of its progress and continue to draw from the Gospel the fundamental values that assure justice and harmony.

Like many of the Saints, Catherine knew great suffering. Some even thought that they should not trust her, to the point that in 1374, six years before her death, the General Chapter of the Dominicans summoned her to Florence to interrogate her. They appointed Raymund of Capua, a learned and humble Friar and a future Master General of the Order, as her spiritual guide. Having become her confessor and also her “spiritual son”, he wrote a first complete biography of the Saint. She was canonized in 1461.

For more visit Vatican.va

Dr. Matthew E. Bunson is a Register senior editor and a senior contributor to EWTN News. For the past 20 years, he has been active in the area of Catholic social communications and education, including writing, editing, and teaching on a variety of topics related to Church history, the papacy, the saints, and Catholic culture. He is faculty chair at Catholic Distance University, a senior fellow of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology, and the author or co-author of over 50 books including The Encyclopedia of Catholic History, The Pope Encyclopedia, We Have a Pope! Benedict XVI, The Saints Encyclopedia and best-selling biographies of St. Damien of Molokai and St. Kateri Tekakwitha.

CWC2 – A Foretaste of Heaven – Communion with Christ: Practical Prayer w/ Deacon James Keating – Discerning Hearts Podcast

Episode 2-Communion with Christ – Practical Prayer –  We have lost are fear of going astray and being unfaithful within.  We must be aware of the spirits, personal or impersonal, that can get into us.  We can get tangled up in many different  influences in prayer.  That is why it so important to have a director, a guide,  to help us navigate in this journey and to test those spirits.  Jesus is the model of prayer.  “He learns to pray from His mother”. (see below).    The witness of the community.  His prayer springs from a secret source and He wishes to share it with us.  All prayer is foretaste of heaven.

Deacon James Keating, Ph.D., is a professor of Spiritual Theology and serves as a spiritual director at Kenrick Glennon Seminary in St. Louis, MO. 

Check out Deacon Keating’s “Discerning Heart” page

Deacon Keating is also the author of:


You can find the book here.

From the book description:

The book addresses their mutual dedication to remain with Christ in prayer even in the service of parishioners. Once prayer finds a place in the heart, compassion grows for those who look for God “like sheep without a shepherd.” Through interior prayerfulness, clerical unity in ministry can be better ensured Remain in Me is for priests and deacons to use as prayer, on retreat, or during the holy seasons of Lent and Advent.

 

CWC1 God Calls Man First -Communion with Christ: Practical Prayer w/ Deacon James Keating – Discerning Hearts Podcast

Episode 1 -Communion with Christ – Practical Prayer –The most powerful principle of prayer is that God desires us.  Prayer is a response to a presence who has entered our reality. Distractions, an enemy of prayer. Recovering the prophetic consciousness.  The highest fruit of prayer to be someone who is so transparent to God, that  God reveals His acts in our lives…the person has become prayer.

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church paragraph 2567

God calls man first. Man may forget his Creator or hide far from his face; he may run after idols or accuse the deity of having abandoned him; yet the living and true God tirelessly calls each person to that mysterious encounter known as prayer. In prayer, the faithful God’s initiative of love always comes first; our own first step is always a response. As God gradually reveals himself and reveals man to himself, prayer appears as a reciprocal call, a covenant drama. Through words and actions, this drama engages the heart. It unfolds throughout the whole history of salvation.

Deacon James Keating, Ph.D., is a professor of Spiritual Theology and serves as a spiritual director at Kenrick Glennon Seminary in St. Louis, MO. 

Check out Deacon Keating’s “Discerning Heart” page

Deacon Keating is also the author of:


You can find the book here.

From the book description:

The book addresses their mutual dedication to remain with Christ in prayer even in the service of parishioners. Once prayer finds a place in the heart, compassion grows for those who look for God “like sheep without a shepherd.” Through interior prayerfulness, clerical unity in ministry can be better ensured Remain in Me is for priests and deacons to use as prayer, on retreat, or during the holy seasons of Lent and Advent.