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Catholic Spiritual Direction

Graces Given by God

May 27, 2013 by  
Filed under Examen, Fr. Bartunek, Grace, Practicing Presence, Prayer

Miguel Cabrera Saint Ignatius Loyola Google_Art_Project Wikimedia Commons copy 2

Dear Father John, I have started saying a daily Morning Offering Prayer in which I ask God with the help of His Grace that I remain all day in a spirit of praise and thanksgiving and that all of my actions be for the purpose of doing His will. However, I find I cannot remain in this spirit all day with the normal pressures of everyday life to deal with that can take my mind off of God. Does God withhold his Grace for whatever... Read More

Interior Pentecost of the Heart

Venerable Concepcion Cabrera de Armida

Sometimes we struggle to find heroic lay people to emulate. The stories of many Saints and much spiritual literature describe the spiritual lives of consecrated and/or ordained Christians. But, what about the rest of us, the remaining 99.9% of the Church, do we have any hope for holiness? Vatican II answers in the affirmative with the universal call to holiness (Lumen Gentium, 39). Venerable Concepcion Cabrera de Armida, (1861-1937),... Read More

Pope Benedict XVI on Praying Without Ceasing

January 16, 2012 by  
Filed under Dan Burke, Practicing Presence, Prayer

Pope Benedict XVI on Praying Without Ceasing

Praying Without Ceasing Praying without ceasing means: never losing contact with God, letting ourselves be constantly touched by him in the depths of our hearts and, in this way, being penetrated by his light. Only someone who actually knows God can lead others to God. Only someone who leads people to God leads them along the path of life. Homily on the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord, 2012   About Dan BurkeDan is... Read More

I am struggling with the idea of “practicing the presence of God”… What can I do?

February 7, 2011 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Practicing Presence, Prayer

Dear Father John, I have had a pretty regular prayer life for a few years, and have been going to confession regularly as well, and receiving Communion frequently.  In my spiritual reading, though, I keep coming across the idea of “practicing the presence of God.”  This means staying aware of Jesus throughout the day’s activities, right?  Well, I have been trying to do this, but can’t seem to make any progress.  The... Read More

Brother Lawrence – Continual Conversation With God

November 19, 2009 by  
Filed under Brother Lawrence, Dan Burke, Meditations, Practicing Presence, Prayer

Dear Reverend and very honored Mother, To become truly spiritual the heart must be empty of all other things, since God desires to be its only Master. And since He cannot be its Master without emptying it of all that is not Himself, He is prevented from doing all that He desires if it is not empty. There is no manner of life in the world more sweet or more delicious than continual conversation with God. They alone can understand... Read More

Brother Lawrence – On Managing Our Minds and Distractions in Prayer

November 13, 2009 by  
Filed under Brother Lawrence, Dan Burke, Meditations, Practicing Presence, Prayer

Reverend and very honored Mother, You are not writing anything new to me. You are not the only one agitated in thoughts. Our mind is extremely fickle, but since the will is master of all our powers, it must call back the mind and carry it to God as its final goal. When the mind has not been brought down at the outset, and has a few wicked habits of straying and wasting time, these habits are difficult to conquer. They usually draw... Read More

Problems with my mind… Any ideas?

November 12, 2009 by  
Filed under Anonymous, Practicing Presence, Prayer

To love God is everything to me – to serve him – more than everything. He is worthy of all that I have, all that I am. However, I have a problem. I have a very active mind. From the moment I rise to the moment I sleep my mind is racing. When I sleep, or I should say on the rare occasion that I do sleep, my mind is still racing. So, who cares? Well, I thought it may be of interest to those who, like me, have a similar... Read More

How can I maintain the presence of God through the work day?

August 31, 2009 by  
Filed under Fr. Bartunek, Practicing Presence, Prayer

Dear Father John, What tips would you offer to a person seeking to maintain the presence of God throughout the work day? First, take a look at the treatment we gave this issue in the post on “Prayer – Practicing his Presence.” But since the observations we made there apply to every vocation and life-stage (parent, student, professional, home-maker…), addressing the work place specifically could be worthwhile. I would offer... Read More