heaven

Photo by Kylo via Unsplash
Peter Gallagher SJ reflects on the powerful yet humble faith which we celebrate on the Feast of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul.      Look not on our sins but on the faith of your Church (The Order of Mass, 126). This heartfelt prayer is expressed at Mass just before the sign of peace. Look not on our sins but on the faith of your Church. These words capture not only our vivid sense of unworthiness in the presence of our Lord and his sacred mysteries but also our...
Photo by Ethan Sykes via Unsplash
As we walk towards Pentecost, we are longing to see into heaven, like Stephen. Peter Gallagher SJ invites us to be contemplatives gazing into heaven, but remember also we are active disciples of Christ. Of all the times of waiting and preparation in the Church, the novena of the Holy Spirit, between the Ascension and the day of Pentecost, is surely the gentlest. Lent can be hard work.  Even Advent, during which we sometimes anticipate Christmas too precipitately, can seem wintry and...
Eternity has more kinds of rooms than this world does.  We may know, or at least know about some people whose way of life would seem so reprehensible that it’s hard to imagine that they could ever make it to heaven.But as Christians, we believe that, as part of the Body of Christ, we have been given the power to forgive each other’s sins and that, because of that, indeed anyone’s love can pull their beloved into heaven whatever their faults and failures may be.Our love for each other is a...
Jesus transfigured in front of his disciples
The Transfiguration was a unique experience in the life of Jesus and the three disciples who witnessed it. Jesus' ''face shone like the sun and his clothes became as white as the light". (Matt. 17:1-9)Moses and Elijah also appeared and talked with Jesus. Moses had been dead for about 1,500 years and Elijah for almost 1,000, yet there they were.A third phenomenon was the overshadowing cloud and the audible voice of God saying: "This is my son, the beloved; he enjoys my...
Anastasis, Chora Church, Istanbul by Nick Thomson on Flickr
When we were younger we may have occasionally thought that there were things in our life which ought to be changed. Most of us are well intentioned, but we can keep pushing these things off. Yes, I need to do this, but I’m not ready yet. I’ll get around to it sometime.That’s a near-universal sentiment. The tension we experience between our desire to grow-up and our stalling in doing that, reflects a tension that lies at the heart of Jesus’ message, a tension between God...
God and Creation
Various places within our everyday experience hint that ordinary experience contains more than just the ordinary, that God is there. One such experience is that of a mother comforting a frightened child at night, using soothing words and gestures to assure the child that he or she need not be afraid, that everything’s all right, the world is in order. In saying this, the mother is expressing something of the confidence implicit in the creed. Another such intimation of the divine within ordinary...