Spiritual Journeys

the_lord_s_prayer_by_navalatanjjnn
After explaining the meaning of the Lord’s Prayer,  St Augustine goes on to speak about answers to prayer.We do not know how to pray as we ought. You may still perhaps ask why the apostle Paul said, 'We do not know how to pray as we ought'; for it is impossible to believe that either he or those to whom he was saying this did not know the Lord's prayer. The apostle shows that he himself is not exempt from ignorance. He hardly knew how to pray as he ought when, to prevent his...
A wise old man's face with glasses
When I was working in the Amazon in South America, we had a lot of people come in to us with eye problems. Many of them just had simple things like short- or long-sightedness and we could help them with eyeglasses. Doubtless for good genetic reasons, there was one particular Amerindian tribe – the Wapisana – who had a very high prevalence of presbyopia – long-sightedness in old age. And that meant that in that whole tribe, almost no-one over the age of thirty could see within hand-distance. And...
One of the many small details that make up the bigger picture of daily novitiate life is when we are invited to pray the Examen. This takes place twice daily, one around midday and the other before bed, thus providing a neat Ignatian framework within which we set our lives as novices.Prior to arriving at the novitiate I was aware of the Examen and, trying to be a good candidate to the Society, I attempted to build it into my daily life with limited success. I found it a useful exercise in...
Fr Trieu prepares for mass at La Cova de San Ignacio
200 km in 8 days of walking largely mountainous terrain in a mixture of early autumn Spanish weather can actually be a lot of fun.  This fundraising Camino in the steps of St Ignatius, founder of the Jesuits, was certainly that but also offered wonderful spiritual opportunities to get more in touch with Ignatius the pilgrim and his spirituality, for the group to share faith and life.  We hope we have also raised some prayers, awareness and even some money for the Caritas Bakhita...
What's the load?
"How hard it is for those who have riches to enter into the Kingdom of God!"Once upon a time, when I was young, fit and good looking – well OK, about twenty years ago - I cycled from Land’s End to John O’Groats - from the South to the North of Great Britain – more than a thousand miles. And one day, I met an American tourist who was doing the same. But he was having a lot of problems with his bike and he was making very slow progress. And he asked me for my help. After about nine hundred...
Mosaic_Design_of_Christ_with_Sashes_-_Cathedral_Basilica_of_Our_Lady_at_Kabgayi_-_Outside_Muhanga-Gitarama_-_Rwanda
Christ is the giver of Good News, pointing the way to live life to the full.  ‘I came’, said Jesus,’ that you might have the fullness of life.’ John 10.10   But the Good News, the Gospel includes some ‘hard sayings’. Matt 5. 17-48   Jesus' teaching shows up our human frailties. Right living starts with right attitudes.  We need to control our thoughts and emotions before they result in outward actions.Hearing this, some people are going to feel uncomfortable. For...
Apostleship of Prayer the Pope's worldwide network of prayer. We pray with the Holy Father, from our hearts and united in the heart of Christ, to grow as missionary disciples.Each month, Pope Francis entrusts two particular prayer intentions to the Apostleship of Prayer, the Pope’s Prayer Network and asks the AoP to spread these intentions to Christians everywhere. Successive Popes have given this mission to the AoP, which is looked after by the Jesuits, for many years. It is for this reason...
The Novice members of the Novitiate Community 2015
Before coming to Birmingham, I had lived on my own for pretty much 8 years, with only a short period of flat-sharing in the few months immediately before. I’m used to single living and, in many respects, I thought I was set in my ways. I’ve been a little fearful of the realities of community life, although also very conscious that it has been part of the appeal of the Jesuit way of living. I like the ideal of us making our way in the world and then coming back to community, at the end of each...
The Sea and the Sun with a profile of a woman
In his novel 'The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne', Brian Moore tells this story. Judith Hearne is a gifted woman, healthy, attractive, competent, comfortable financially, in good relationships with her family and friends. She is loved and respected.There is one problem.  She is approaching midlife, is unmarried and without children.  She is conscious that her biological clock is running down.  Hence, without fully grasping the situation, Judith becomes desperate....
A Mosaic of the world
I have lived in London for 18 years and to celebrate I decided to walk around it, yes, the city that is! I came to London by choice, as an 'economic migrant' perhaps, but to pursue my career and make my home here. It is a city that I have come to know and love well through friends, politics, culture and community groups. Many of the people I work with now did not choose London, but came fleeing for their safety in search of asylum as refugees. Life in London is a struggle for survival and many...

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