POA10 – Know your Armor – The Virtues” – Put On The Armor – A Manual for Spiritual Warfare w/Dr. Paul Thigpen Ph.D. – Discerning Hears Catholic Podcasts

Catholic Spiritual Formation - Catholic Spiritual DirectionEpisode 10 – “Know your Armor – The Virtues” – Put on The Armor – A Manual for Spiritual Warfare with Dr. Paul Thigpen Ph.D

Dr. Thigpen offers insights on the Manual for Spiritual Warfare Chapter 5:

Prayer and fasting, worship and adoration, Scripture and sacraments and sacramentals all provide the weapons of our spiritual warfare. With them we go on the offensive against the Evil One. But the virtues provide our defensive armor.

As Blessed Pope Paul VI once observed, St. Paul “used the armor of a soldier as a symbol for the virtues that can make a Christian invulnerable.” They are our best defense against his attacks, for they guard our minds and hearts from his deceptions and temptations. A lapse in virtue is in fact a chink in our armor that makes us vulnerable.

Each of these virtues, then, and all the others as well, play a vital role in protecting us from enemy assault as the armor we must wear. St. Paul sums it up: “Put on, therefore, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, a heart of mercy, kindness, humility, meekness, patience. Bear with one another, if anyone has a grievance against any other; even as the Lord has forgiven you, so also you must forgive. But above all these things have charity, which is the bond of perfection” (Col 3: 12– 14). Only with such armor will we be fully covered and protected from the Evil One’s attacks.

Visit here for other episodes in this series:
Put On The Armor – A Manual for Spiritual Warfare w/Dr. Paul Thigpen Ph.D.

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The “Manual for Spiritual Warfare” can be found here

Paul Thigpen, Ph.D, is the Editor of TAN Books in Charlotte, North Carolina. An internationally known speaker, best-selling author and award-winning journalist, Paul has published forty-three books in a wide variety of genres and subjects: history and biography, spirituality and apologetics, anthologies and devotionals, family life and children’s books, study guides and reference works, fiction and collections of poetry and prayers.

Paul graduated from Yale University in 1977 summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, with Distinction in the Major of Religious Studies. He was later awarded the George W. Woodruff Fellowship at Emory University in Atlanta, where he earned an M.A. (1993) and a Ph.D. (1995) in Historical Theology. In 1993 he was named as a Jacob K. Javits Fellow by the U.S. Department of Education. He has served on the faculty of several universities and colleges.

In 2008 Paul was appointed by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to their National Advisory Council for a four-year term. He has served the Church as a theologian, historian, apologist, evangelist, and catechist in a number of settings,speaking frequently in Catholic and secular media broadcasts and at conferences, seminars, parish missions, and scholarly gatherings.

 

IP#358 Fr. Donald Haggerty – Contemplative Engimas on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor Podcast


Fr. Donald Haggerty Contemplative Podcast
What a delight to be joined once again by Fr. Donald Haggerty!  He has become one of our favorite spiritual writers of our present-day!  In this episode, we discuss “Contemplative Engimas:  Insights and Aid on the Path to Deeper Prayer.”  We cannot more highly recommend this beautiful work. If all you do is read a couple of pages a day that would more then enough for you to feel like you’ve been sitting at the feet of a spiritual master for an entire day!  Every page is a gem!

Contemplative enigmas Donald Haggerty PodcastYou can find the book here

From the book description:

Despite signs in recent decades of a crisis in the Church, a countercurrent of intense interest in prayer and serious spiritual life is clearly at work today. A deeper esteem for a contemplative dimension of spiritual life has accompanied this turning to prayer, and many people have a need for some form of direction and guidance. Written by a recognized expert on contemplative spirituality, this book concentrates on the mystery of interior trial and difficulty in contemplative prayer. The hardships experienced in the interior life by souls who give themselves to God wholeheartedly are often little acknowledged; yet they are seen with some regularity in contemplative lives. This work offers more than a summary of the symptoms of trial in a contemplative spirituality. The poignant observations have a source in the author’s long years of experience in retreat work with souls of contemplative depth. Personal experience, not simply knowledge of the spiritual tradition, informs these insightful reflections. The concise, carefully crafted comments of this book delve into spiritual difficulties and conundrums in a uniquely personal and penetrating manner. Throughout the book, the writing invites the reader to ponder the subject of spiritual darkness and perplexity and simple struggle in the spiritual life always in the light of the loving hand of God drawing the soul into a greater surrender to himself. The work offers a unique aid and stimulus in the quest for a deeper spirituality.


Other conversations with Fr. Haggerty on Inside the Pages:

Fr. Donald Haggerty -Contemplative Hunger on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

Fr. Donald Haggerty – Conversion on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor Podcast
 

“Walk Humbly Before Your God” The Spiritual Journey – In Conversation with Fr. Andrew Apostoli – Discerning Hearts Podcast

“Walk Humbly Before Your God:  Simple Steps to a Virtuous Life” is an all-time favorite.  Fr. Andrew Apostoli, a founder of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal and a frequent host on the Eternal Word Television Network, had a beautiful way of shining new light on fundamental truths.  He graciously took time to teach us about the nature of prayer,  how it develops in our lives and how we can nurture it.  He spoke of Jesus and several aspects of his prayer: praise, thanksgiving, intercession, and how it aids in our suffering.  Our traditional vocal prayers, as well as the depths of contemplation, were also discussed including how do we deal with distractions,   Fr. Apostoli, a humble, holy priest, was a master spiritual catechist! He died on December 13, 2017, the morning after the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the Community of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal.  Contained in this 50-minute discussion, you’ll find guidance that can last a lifetime.

You can find Fr. Apostoli’s book here

From the book description:

Christians, if they are to have any impact in today s world, have something of the same code: we fight the good fight, side by side, ready to lay down our lives for one another. Such heroism doesn t come naturally. As Walk Humbly With Your God points out, it is in the day-to-day training, in taking the simple steps to holiness, that heroism becomes second nature.

Fr. Apostoli provides an inspirational guide to conquering our faults, growing in prayer and acquiring the virtues that enable us to walk with God and live for others.

In Conversation with Fr. Benedict Groeschel – The Virtue Driven Life – Discerning Hearts Catholic Podcast


Bruce and I were deeply blessed to have a conversation with the late Fr. Benedict Groeschel on “The Virtue Driven Life“. Engaging, humble, funny, and saintly, Fr. Groeschel has left us such a tremendous legacy of teaching on the spiritual life! In this conversation, we discuss the three theological virtues: faith, hope, and charity; as well as the four cardinal virtues: prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance.  Fr. Groeschel, always practical, shares the wisdom of a spiritual father which illuminates more clearly the travails of the spiritual journey.  How blessed were we to have such a spiritual master in our midst!

May eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May Fr. Benedict Groeschel, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen!

 

 

You can find the book here

From the book description:

Since when is being called “virtuous” an insult?

It’s a word that has gotten a bad rap, misused and misunderstood even by great thinkers, philosophers, and theologians, and mocked in the cynical sound bites of the media.

Rediscover virtue as it should be understood in our lives. With wit, warmth, and wisdom, Father Groeschel reintroduces the seven virtues of prudence, justice, fortitude, temperance, faith, hope, and charity. One by one he makes them meaningful for modern men and women, shaking off the dusty mantle of pretentiousness and demonstrating how each has a real role in a whole and holy life.

Father Groeschel’s charming conversational style entertains even as he educates and challenges us. History, politics, an advertisement, the neighbor down the street … all are reference points for Father Groeschel as he explores the meaning of each virtue for Christians today. By the end of the book, you will understand that being labeled virtuous is the ultimate compliment!

 

POA1 – Know Your Enemy – Put On The Armor – A Manual for Spiritual Warfare w/Dr. Paul Thigpen Ph.D. – Discerning Hears Catholic Podcasts

Put On The Armor - A Manual for Spiritual Warfare w/Dr. Paul Thigpen Ph.D. 2

Episode 1 – “Know Your Enemy” – Put on The Armor – A Manual for Spiritual Warfare with Dr. Paul Thigpen Ph.D

Dr. Thigpen offers insights on the Manual for Spiritual Warfare Chapter 1:

Like it or not, you are at war.

No matter who you are — whether or not you know it — you have a mortal enemy who wants to destroy you, not just in this life, but in the next.

No matter where you live on this planet — whether or not you can see it — you live on a hotly contested battlefield, and you can’t escape the conflict.

It’s a spiritual war with crucial consequences in your everyday life. And the outcome of that war will determine your eternal destiny.

The first rule of any type of warfare is to know your enemy. How can you fight an adversary you can’t identify? Worse yet, how can you avoid being a casualty in a battle going on all around you if you don’t even recognize that you’re in danger?

Visit here for other episodes in this series:
Put On The Armor – A Manual for Spiritual Warfare w/Dr. Paul Thigpen Ph.D.

 

POA6 - "Know your Weapons" pt. 1 - Put On The Armor - A Manual for Spiritual Warfare w/Dr. Paul Thigpen Ph.D. The “Manual for Spiritual Warfare” can be found here

Paul Thigpen, Ph.D., is the Editor of TAN Books in Charlotte, North Carolina. An internationally known speaker, best-selling author, and award-winning journalist, Paul has published forty-three books in a wide variety of genres and subjects: history and biography, spirituality and apologetics, anthologies and devotionals, family life and children’s books, study guides and reference works, fiction and collections of poetry and prayers. 

Paul graduated from Yale University in 1977 summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, with Distinction in the Major of Religious Studies. He was later awarded the George W. Woodruff Fellowship at Emory University in Atlanta, where he earned an M.A. (1993) and a Ph.D. (1995) in Historical Theology. In 1993 he was named as a Jacob K. Javits Fellow by the U.S. Department of Education. He has served on the faculty of several universities and colleges.

In 2008 Paul was appointed by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to their National Advisory Council for a four-year term. He has served the Church as a theologian, historian, apologist, evangelist, and catechist in a number of settings, speaking frequently in Catholic and secular media broadcasts and at conferences, seminars, parish missions, and scholarly gatherings.

 

IP#303 – Susan Conroy – Praying with Mother Teresa on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor Podcast

Susan Conroy – Praying with Mother Teresa on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

susan_conroy-1What an absolutely wonderful book!  In “Praying with Mother Teresa: Prayers, Insights, and Wisdom of Saint Teresa of Calcutta” author Susan Conroy takes into the depths of her heart through her tremendous devotion to prayer.  Susan is exceptional in sharing the joy of Mother Teresa’s particular charism: “to care for the poorest of the poor”.  Who are the “poorest of the poor”? The answer might surprise you.  Full disclosure is necessary:  I LOVE THIS BOOK!  It has become one of my favorite devotional works, and hopefully one of yours too!  Susan is inspiring as well, an obvious fruit from this beautiful ministry.  Don’t miss!

 

praying-with-mother-teresaYou can get a copy of the book here

From the book description:

Praying with Mother Teresa brings us into the heart of Mother Teresa’s prayer life! Author Susan Conroy, a personal friend of Mother Teresa, gives us a meditative look at Mother Teresa’s insights on suffering, joy, peace, humility, and poverty, and brings us right into the prayer life of one of the most beloved women of our time, Saint Teresa of Calcutta. Each prayer has been carefully, and prayerfully, selected for use in daily prayer. Mother Teresa gave Susan her blessing and approval to share these words and prayers with others “to bring them peace and joy too.”

USCCA43 – The 10th Commandment: Embrace Poverty of Spirit – U. S. Catholic Catechism for Adults w/ Arch. George Lucas

USCCA43  Chapter 34- Embrace Poverty of Spirit : The 10th Commandment Archbisop-George-Lucas

Archbishop Lucas offers insights on the US Catholic Catechism for Adults Chapter 34:

On the positive side, the Tenth Commandment calls us to practice poverty of spirit and generosity of heart. These virtues liberate us from being slaves to money and possessions. They enable us to have a preferential love for the poor and to be witnesses of justice and peace in the world. They also enable us to adopt a simplicity of life that frees us from consumerism and helps us preserve God’s creation.

Sinful inclinations move us to envy what others have and lead to an unrestrained drive to acquire all that we can. We do have a reasonable need to acquire the means needed to care for our families. Greed is the distortion of this desire. The greedy person will stop at nothing to get all the money and possessions possible.

We need to remember that envy is the companion of greed; it is an attitude that fills us with sadness at the sight of another’s prosperity. Envious people can be consumed with so much desire for what others have that they will even commit crimes to get what they want.

Baptized people should counter envy with humility, thanksgiving to God for his gifts to oneself and to others, goodwill, and surrender to the providence of God (cf. CCC, no. 2554). “Christ’s faithful ‘have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires’ (Gal 5:24); they are led by the Spirit and follow his desires” (CCC, no. 2555). Poverty of heart is a way to avoid greed and envy. “Abandonment to the providence of the Father in heaven frees us from anxiety about tomorrow. Trust in God is a preparation for the blessedness of the poor. They shall see God” (CCC, no. 2547, citing Mt 6:25-34).

United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) (2012-04-02). United States Catholic Catechism for Adults (Kindle Locations 6493-6504). United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). Kindle Edition.

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:

More information can be found here.

We wish to thank the USCCB for the permissions granted for use of  relevant material used in this series.

IP#304 Fr. Ed Broom, O.M.V. – From Humdrum to Holy on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

What a delight to talk and to LEARN from Fr. Ed Broom, of the Oblates of the Virgin Maryseven-last-wordsHis book “From Humdrum to HOLY: A Step-by-Step Guide to Living Like a Saint” is great!  In our conversation, we discuss the value of the spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola and the great legacy of Ven. Bruno Lanteri and of having a spiritual program in our lives.  He offers in this work, among other things, “10 Ways to Start (or Continue) Becoming a Saint” .  Through the “10 M’s” he presents practical entryways to help souls who desire to establish spiritual practices in their everyday life.  Fr. Ed speaks of the importance of self-knowledge and the practice of the Daily Examen Prayer as well as, the need to form a healthy conscience.  We are only able to touch the tip of the iceberg in this episode, but that’s the beauty of having the “From Humdrum to HOLY” your hands! Fr. Ed Broom’s writing is so engaging and filled with clarity. Take an important first step in growing in holiness and get this book!

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You can find the book here

“I’m a direct beneficiary of Fr. Ed Broom’s extraordinary zeal for souls. His passionate pastoral concern for ‘lost sheep’ helped bring me back to the practice of my Catholic Faith in high school, and his stirring homilies enkindled in me an ardent desire for holiness. I pray that the potent practical wisdom of these pages will inspire many others to strive for greater sanctity.”
Fr. Michael Gaitley, MIC
Author, 33 Days to Merciful Love

“In Fr. Broom’s book, readers will find an accessible and practical guide toward the goal of holiness.”
Fr. Timothy M. Gallagher, OMV

“Those who long for a serious, yet simple and doable, path to spiritual growth, to holiness and to wholeness, will find a treasure in this wonderfully-readable spiritual gem.”
Mother Miriam Of The Lamb Of God, O.S.B.
Daughters of Mary, Mother of Israel’s Hope

IP#304 Fr. Ed Broom O.M.V – From Humdrum to Holy on Inside the Pages from Discerning Hearts on Vimeo.

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

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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

 

 

IP#219 Fr. Kenneth Baker S.J. – The Will of God on Inside the Pages with Kris McGregor

The Will of God: Finding and Fulfilling Your Purpose in Life” is a great book which uses the great Psalm 119 to help us in the Fr.-Kenneth-Bakerarea of discernment.  Taking a lifetime of steeped  in prayer and sound theology, Fr. Baker gives us a unique and penetrating resource to aid in our growth in the areas of contemplation and discernment. Father Baker was the editor of Homiletic & Pastoral Review for more than 40 years, and currently serves as Editor Emeritus of the online edition.  He was a joy to talk with and to learn from….not to be missed for the discerning heart!

51NA4FEfn2L._SX326_BO1,204,203,200_You can find the book here

“Father Baker helps us to discover God’s will and, what is even more, important how to live God’s will! He uses the Holy Scriptures,the teaching of the Church and the saints to help us become holy and transformed into the saints that God created us to be. Read this book and discover what God wants you to do!” —Fr. Larry Richards, Author, Be a Man!