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Are You Called to Be a Spiritual Director?

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People around the world are starving to know the God who loves them and who made them for an eternal relationship with Him. But who will lead them? Who has the time, the training, and the desire to help souls who thirst and hunger for God? I recently had the blessing of spending time with Msgr. David Toups, the Rector of St. Vincent De Paul Regional Seminary in Boynton Beach, Florida. I asked him if he was training priests to provide... Read More

Thinking with the Church – Mysticism and Magisterium Part I of VI

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Editor’s Note:  Today, we are honored to introduce to you Father Angelo Geiger, who has written extensively on Marian theology and spirituality, and has been published in such publications as “Inside the Vatican” and “Catholic World Report” (online).  We are particularly pleased to note that he is our first writer out of the Franciscan tradition. We are blessed he has agreed to write for us.  Please... Read More

A Suitable Sign…Getting to Know Saint Therese

January 17, 2014 by  
Filed under Carmelite Sisters, Discernment, Vocations

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When I was first introduced to Saint Thérèse as a young adult, I did not like her. She seemed to be enshrined in such a cloud of saccharine sweetness, scattering roses of every shade with each step, that I was positive that she and I would never be friends. I didn’t mind if others wanted to pray her novenas and I rejoiced with friends who received a rose from her but none of that for me, thank you very much. As it turned out,... Read More

Have a Blessed Life like St. Joseph this Christmas!

December 13, 2013 by  
Filed under Discernment, God's Will, Mary Kaufmann

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Over coffee one day, my eighty-five year old friend, Lorreene, a beautiful, white haired, genteel woman, leaned forward and said with a gleam in her eye, “Mary, I really have had a blessed life.” In the next breath, she continued, “You know, it has not always been easy. Remember the story about my son, John, who had severe migraine headaches, which not even treatment at the Mayo Clinic helped? What jumped started my deep... Read More

Consolation – Navigating the Interior Life Spiritual Dictionary

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CONSOLATION: An interior movement aroused in the soul, by which it is inflamed with love of its Creator and Lord. It is likewise consolation when one sheds tears that move to the love of God, whether it be because of sorrow for sins, or because of the sufferings of Christ our Lord, or for any other reason that is immediately directed to the praise and service of God. Consolation can also be every increase of faith, hope, and love,... Read More

Discernment of Spirits and Pope Francis

September 22, 2013 by  
Filed under Discernment, Ignatian Spirituality, Webinar

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In Pope Francis’ recent interview with America magazine he frequently references “discernment.” Though many are aware of what he means by this, those who have never been exposed to Ignatian spirituality might need a little more information. Here are a few of the ways he illustrated or used the idea of “discernment” in this interview: “He also speaks about the moment during the conclave when he began to realize that... Read More

Discerning Private Revelations (Part II of II)

September 2, 2013 by  
Filed under Discernment, Fr. Bartunek, Private Revelation

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…a reader asks: My question is about claims of locutions and messages on various websites.  It seems to me they’re threatening readers that, unless Pope Francis proclaims “the 5th Marian Dogma” very soon, the world faces social destruction and nuclear war.  I feel fearfully pressured to spend all my time in prayer as the time draws near.  I’ve spoken to other priests and laity about this.  I need... Read More

Discerning Private Revelations (Part I of II)

August 26, 2013 by  
Filed under Discernment, Fr. Bartunek, Private Revelation

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My question is about claims of locutions and messages on various websites.  It seems to me they’re threatening readers that, unless Pope Francis proclaims “the 5th Marian Dogma” very soon, the world faces social destruction and nuclear war.  I feel fearfully pressured to spend all my time in prayer as the time draws near.  I’ve spoken to other priests and laity about this.  I need your advice and help. To... Read More

Questionable Visions: Demonic or Psychiatric Origins?

August 8, 2013 by  
Filed under Demonology, Discernment, Fr. Fortea, Spiritual Warfare

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Fr. Fortea, how can one tell if a vision is demonic in origin or is a psychiatric problem? The best way to discern if something is demonic in origin or merely a psychiatric problem is through the passage of time. If something that seems extraordinary (e.g., a vision or a locution) is a mental illness, it will get progressively worse and obvious psychosis will develop. When a person meets with his spiritual director or a theologian... Read More

What does the Church say about private revelations? – Part II of II

June 11, 2012 by  
Filed under Discernment, Fr. Bartunek, Private Revelation

What does the Church say about private revelations? – Part II of II

Dear Father John, I understand that we need to defer to the judgment of the Church on matters of private revelations. It only stands to reason that the Church has the wisdom of thousands of years behind it and is very capable of guiding us in these cases. Even so, I feel drawn to dig deeper into Medjugorje and even what I have read about Garabandal. Is this instinct wrong or harmful to my faith? Surely there were people who believed... Read More

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