National Catholic Reporter

The Independent News Source

Spiritual Reflections

Give them yourselves

 | 

During the months of upheaval following the killing of Michael Brown by a policeman in Ferguson, Mo., in August 2014, protesters described their standoff with the authorities by chanting, "This is what democracy looks like!" Clergy and religious leaders added, "This is what theology looks like," as they marched or held street-side sit-downs.

Feast of God's love

 | 

"The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity" -- the very title sounds so heady that we might wonder if our feet are supposed to touch the ground this weekend. But today's opening prayer in the liturgy simplifies the point of the celebration. That prayer addresses and praises God as the Father who so wanted to be known that Jesus became human. It recognizes God who so desires that we share divine life that the Spirit continues to lure us into union with one another and with God. This process is called "sanctification."

Becoming community

 | 

We might think of Pentecost Sunday as something like the church's Fourth of July celebration. It's not just the attention-getting sound, the pyrotechnics and the excitement, but the here-comes-everybody reunion of a multinational crowd of folks who all heard a message and allowed themselves to get caught up in its power.

With and within us

 | 

During that period of church history when believers found the interim between Jesus' advents stretching into months, then years, then decades, they knew they had to deal with the facts. The apostolic eyewitnesses to Jesus were already dead, or soon would be. The movement was growing beyond Judah and Samaria unto the "ends of the earth." Heresies and false teachers threatened the unity of the community and the integrity of the deposit of the faith.

No more fear

 | 

Of what are you afraid? It might be snakes, bankruptcy or things that go bump in the night. Whatever you name, it's ultimately a fear of death and her little sisters, pain and diminishment.

Inspired by the dream

 | 

Even if we can't explain it, most of us are aware that Einstein's theory of relativity threw a monkey wrench into Newton's "modern" physics. What we may not have thought about is the devastating effect the theory has on the individualism that characterizes modern philosophy.

Jesus lives!

 | 

During this season of Easter, we celebrate the essence of our faith: Jesus lives! Without this truth, faith falls apart and we, as church, become a colossal joke. But we believe! Jesus lives! And it is our privilege and responsibility to witness to the truth of Resurrection.

Real change

 | 

Our Easter Gospel readings may leave us surprisingly disappointed. As we go to the garden to celebrate the first day of the new creation, these narratives leave us disoriented in the ambiguous land of an open tomb.

Pages

Subscribe to Spiritual Reflections

FRIENDS-ff.jpg

NCR Email Alerts