Overcoming Spiritual Discouragement Online Retreat with Fr. Timothy Gallagher!!!


Join Fr. Timothy Gallagher and Kris McGregor in this special Discerning Hearts Video Podcast as they discuss the effects of the novel Coronavirus Global Pandemic. Fr. Gallagher offers ten spiritual counsels to help us spiritually through this time.

Ten Spiritual Counsels in a Time of Covid-19

1. This trial is a spiritual opportunity. Many holy men and women found God more deeply in time of loss, pain, and struggle. Live this time as a special opportunity for spiritual growth.

2. These days teach us that we are not in control, and that God is, a powerful and healing lesson for all of life (Mt 5:3).

3. This time, with busyness reduced, offers a priceless opportunity to reflect on our lives, why we are here, what matters most, the people in our lives. Reflect in this way: it will pay rich dividends.

4. These weeks offer increased time to be with each other, our spouses, children, parents, and all the important people in our lives. Spend more time with them, and the relationships that matter most in your life will be blessed.

5. These anxious days are a time for small, daily, warm, concrete gestures of caring for others: a helping hand, a phone call, a text, an email, an errand done for another, a listening ear. Look for such opportunities and respond.

6. “Consolation must now be everyone’s commitment” (Pope Francis). Be a presence that brings consolation to the worried, the ill, the lonely, the afraid.

7. Follow online the daily words of Pope Francis. He speaks with wisdom, warmth, and faith about this situation. In this way, you will live these days with the universal Church.

8. In God’s timing, this struggle coincides with Lent. You have more time, and there is greater need now to live it well. Make this a special Lent. Choose how you will live it.

9. Pray, pray, pray. Spend 15 minutes each day in some form of meditation—you have the time. It might be lectio divina, Morning and Evening Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours, the Rosary, Ignatian meditation or contemplation of Scripture . . . whatever way best helps you to pray. Pope Benedict writes: “Prayer is the school of hope.”

10. Turn to our Blessed Mother in a new and deeper way. In time of struggle, the Church always turns to her because “Never was it known that anyone who fled to your protection, implored your intercession, or sought your help, was left unaided” (the Memorare).

DM01 Dr. Scott Hahn – The Name of God is Mercy: Old Testament – The Gospel of Divine Mercy

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“The Name of God is Mercy: Old Testament Promise”

Talk one presented at the Fullness of Truth Conference entitled “The Gospel of Divine Mercy”

In the Year of Mercy, Pope Francis called the Church to contemplate the mercy of God in the face of Christ. Even more fundamentally, he has called us to give and receive mercy, to seek it for ourselves and others.

But what is mercy? Is it an emotion? An action? An affront to justice or an expression of justice? Moreover, what does it look like in action? Where do we find it described in Sacred Scripture? What do we need to do to receive it? And how do we share God’s mercy as we go about our lives in the world today?

At the 2016 Fullness of Truth Conference, “The Gospel of Divine Mercy,” those questions and more were explored in an attempt to plumb the depths of this all-important manifestation of God’s healing, forgiving, transforming, faithful love with help from the Sacred Page.

Held at Prince of Peace Catholic Church in Houston, Texas, from June 24–25, 2016, the Fullness of Truth Conference featured six talks by St. Paul Center President Dr. Scott Hahn and St. Paul Center Fellows Dr. John Bergsma and Dr. Michael Barber.

Be sure to visit the website for St. Paul Center for Biblical Theologyimg_3026

Day 1 – A Novena for the Annunciation – Mp3 audio and text podcast

Day 1: Mary, Full of Grace

From the Gospel according to Luke 1:28

In the sixth month, the Angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth. He was sent to a young virgin who was betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the family of David: and the virgin’s name was Mary. The Angel came to her and said, Rejoice, Full of Grace! 

Let us pray:
Almighty Father, all-powerful and ever-living God, we thank You for bestowing upon Your highly favored daughter all the graces to be Your Son’s Mother and to be the Mother of all. We thank You for sending Your Son Jesus Christ to be our redeemer and savior. Thank You for giving us the breath of life and the splendor of Your creations. We thank You, Father, our Lord, and our God, for Your infinite kindness and mercy. How good You are to us, your children. We praise you and worship you, with Your Son, Jesus Christ, and his Mother Mary, our intercessor. To You, we owe everything. We acknowledge humbly that without You, we are nothing. Receive our gratitude and our undying adoration and devotion. We will try to reciprocate Your loving kindness by obeying Your commandments, by loving our neighbors and by earnestly endeavoring to become more like Your Son. We shall continuously affirm Your lordship and celebrate Your goodness and kindness all the days of our life.
Amen.

Jesus, for our salvation You willingly humbled Yourself, becoming Man in the womb of the Virgin Mother, grant me through the mystery of Your holy Incarnation the virtue of humility that I may ever please God as Your Mother did, by meekness and lowliness in this world, and be exalted by You in eternity.

Mary, dear Mother of my Savior, I greet you and I thank you for having received the message of the Archangel Gabriel: “Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee” (Luke I:28) and for having answered with your consent, “Behold the handmaid of the Lord, be it done to me according to thy word.” (Luke 1:38) Intercede for me that God the Father, who accepted you as His Daughter and the Mother of His Son because of your humility at the Annunciation, may accept me as His humble child. Amen

 

St. Anthony of the Desert Novena Day 7 – mp3 audio and text

St. Anthony of the Desert Novena Day 7

Day 7

From the Sayings of St. Anthony of the Desert:

The brothers praised a monk before Abba Anthony. When the monk came to see him, Anthony wanted to know how he would bear insults, and seeing that he could not bear them at all, he said to him, “You are like a village magnificently decorated on the outside, but destroyed from within by robbers.”

A brother said to Abba Anthony, “Pray for me.” The old man said to him, “I will have no mercy on you, nor will God have any, if you yourself do not make an effort and if you do not pray to God.”

 

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.

For the entire 9-Day St. Anthony of the Desert Novena Mp3 audio and Text Page

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:

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

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.”

HM-2 “A Handmaid of the Lord”: the Life and Legacy of Adrienne von Speyr with Dr. Adrian Walker – Discerning Hearts Podcast

Adrian-WalkerEpisode 2 – “A Brief Overview of Adrienne’s Life” – “A Handmaid of the Lord”: The life and legacy of Adrienne von Speyr with Dr. Adrian Walker, Ph.D.

With Dr. Adrian Walker, we discuss various aspects of Adrienne’s life.  What was her childhood like?  What were the relationship dynamics within her family?  We discuss her marriages and professional career.  Dr. Walker delves into her conversion to the Catholic faith and her mystical experiences.

…indifference impregnated with Johannine theology. The theory of mysticism which Adrienne formulated culminates in the one statement: Mysticism is a particular mission, a particular service to the Church which can only be properly carried out in a continual and complete movement away from oneself, in self-forgetfulness (she loved the word éffacement) and virginal readiness for the Word of God. Personal states as such are of no interest and ought not to be reflected upon, all psychologizing introspection becomes without fail a deviation from the main concern—God’s Word—and therefore a distortion of one’s mission. This basic law is also, according to Adrienne, the principal guideline for spiritual directors.

By this time, Adrienne had been interpreting books of Holy Scripture for about a decade: after the Johannine writings, some of Paul, the Catholic Epistles, the Apocalypse, books or parts of books from the Old Testament. In later years one could give her at random any text of Scripture with the request that she interpret it immediately; she would close her eyes for a few seconds, and then in her quiet, objective tone of voice she would begin to speak in sentences that were almost ready for publishing. She usually dictated in the afternoon after she had returned from her two-o’clock office hours and had had a cup of tea. She seldom dictated for more than half an hour per day. During vacations, she would occasionally dictate for two or three hours, but this was rare. More will be said later about one exception, regarding the commentary on the Apocalypse.

Balthasar, Hans Urs von (2012-08-21). First Glance at Adrienne von Speyr (Kindle Locations 345-356). Ignatius Press. Kindle Edition.

 

adrienne_von_speyr1Adrienne von Speyr was a Swiss convert, mystic, wife, medical doctor and author of over 60 books on spirituality and theology. She’s inspired countless souls around the world to deepen their mission of prayer and compassion. She entered the Catholic Church under the direction of the great theologian, Hans Urs von Balthasar. In the years that would follow, they would co-found the secular institute, the Community of St. John.

 

Adrian Walker is an editor of the journal Communio, an International Catholic Review, who received his doctorate in philosophy at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. Dr. Walker has served as a translator for the English edition of Pope Benedict XVI’s, ” Jesus of Nazareth”, as well as numerous other theological works, including those of Hans Urs von Balthasar and Adrienne von Speyr.

Our series recorded at “Casa Balthasar“, a house of discernment for men located in Rome, Italy. The Casa, was founded in 1990 by a group of friends and is directed by Rev. Jacques Servais, S.J.; Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI) has been closely associated with the Casa Balthasar from the very beginning as its Cardinal Protector.

 Many of Adrienne von Speyr’s books can found through Ignatius Press

 

HM-1 “A Handmaid of the Lord”: the Life and Legacy of Adrienne von Speyr with Dr. Adrian Walker – Discerning Hearts Podcast

 

Episode 1 –  “Introduction – A Meeting With von Balthasar” –  “A Handmaid of the Lord”:  The life and legacy of Adrienne von Speyr with Dr. Adrian Walker, Ph.D.

Adrian-Walker

With Dr. Adrian Walker, we begin our conversation on the life and legacy of Adrienne von Speyr.  To lay the groundwork for our discussion, we begin by exploring the influence of  one of the most significant figures in Adrienne’s life:  Hans-Urs-von-BlathasarHans Urs von Balthasar.  Balthasar (12 August 1905 – 26 June 1988) was a Swiss theologian and Catholic priest who was to be created a cardinal of the Catholic Church by St. John Paul II but died before the ceremony. He is considered one of the most important Roman Catholic theologians of the 20th century.

 

adrienne_von_speyr1Adrienne von Speyr was a Swiss convert, mystic, wife, medical doctor and author of over 60 books on spirituality and theology. She’s inspired countless souls around the world to deepen their mission of prayer and compassion. She entered the Catholic Church under the direction of the great theologian, Hans Urs von Balthasar. In the years that would follow, they would co-found the secular institute, the Community of St. John.

 

Adrian Walker is an editor of the journal Communio, an International Catholic Review, who received his doctorate in philosophy at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. Dr. Walker has served as a translator for the English edition of Pope Benedict XVI’s, ” Jesus of Nazareth”, as well as numerous other theological works, including those of Hans Urs von Balthasar and Adrienne von Speyr.

Our series recorded at “Casa Balthasar“,  a house of discernment for men located in Rome, Italy. The Casa,  was founded in 1990 by a group of friends and is directed by Rev. Jacques Servais, S.J.; Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI) has been closely associated with the Casa Balthasar from the very beginning as its Cardinal Protector.casa-balthasar-300x224

 

 

 Many of Adrienne von Speyr’s books can found through Ignatius Press

 

Day 3 Prayer 2 – Heaven in Faith by St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Audio and Text

Day 3 Second Prayer

11. “You have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” St. Paul comes to bring us a light to guide us on the pathway of the abyss. “You have died!” What does that mean but that the soul that aspires to live close to God “in the invincible fortress of holy recollection” must be “set apart, stripped, and withdrawn from all things” (in spirit). This soul “finds within itself a simple ascending movement of love to God, whatever creatures may do; it is invincible to things which” pass away, “for it transcends them, seeking God alone.”

12. “Quotidie morior.” “I die daily.” I decrease, I renounce self-more each day so that Christ may increase in me and be exalted; I “remain” very little “in the depths of my poverty.” I see “my nothingness, my misery, my weakness; I perceive that I am incapable of progress, of perseverance; I see the multitude of my shortcomings, my defects; I appear in my indigence.” “I fall down in my misery, confessing my distress, and I display it before the mercy” of my Master. “Quotidie morior.” I place the joy of my soul (as to the will, not sensible feelings) in everything that can immolate, destroy, or humble me, for I want to make room for my Master. I live no longer I, but He lives in me: I no longer want “to live my own life, but to be transformed in Jesus Christ so that my life may be more divine than human,” so that the Father in bending attentively over me can recognize the image of His beloved Son in whom He has placed all His delight.

Elizabeth of the Trinity. Elizabeth of the Trinity Complete Works, Volume I: I Have Found God, General Introduction and Major Spiritual Writings (pp. 97-98). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.

Day 1 Prayer 1 – Heaven in Faith by St. Elizabeth of the Trinity – Audio and Text

Day 1 First Prayer

1. “Father, I will that where I am they also whom You have given Me may be with Me, in order that they may behold My glory which You have given Me, because You have loved Me before the creation of the world.” Such is Christ’s last wish, His supreme prayer before returning to His Father. He wills that where He is we should be also, not only for eternity, but already in time, which is eternity begun and still in progress. It is important then to know where we must live with Him in order to realize His divine dream. “The place where the Son of God is hidden is the bosom of the Father, or the divine Essence, invisible to every mortal eye, unattainable by every human intellect,” as Isaiah said: “Truly You are a hidden God.” And yet His will is that we should be established in Him, that we should live where He lives, in the unity of love; that we should be, so to speak, His own shadow.

2. By baptism, says St. Paul, we have been united to Jesus Christ. And again: “God seated us together in Heaven in Christ Jesus, that He might show in the ages to come the riches of His grace.” And further on: “You are no longer guests or strangers, but you belong to the City of saints and the House of God.” The Trinity—this is our dwelling, our “home,” the Father’s house that we must never leave. The Master said one day: “The slave does not remain with the household forever, but the son remains there forever” (St. John).

Elizabeth of the Trinity. Elizabeth of the Trinity Complete Works, Volume I: I Have Found God, General Introduction and Major Spiritual Writings (p. 94). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.