Spiritual Journeys

Watch the latest Pope Video herePOPE FRANCIS’S PRAYER INTENTION FOR FEBRUARY - reflection by Fr David Stewart SJAn urgent and tragic aspect of human life today is the suffering of millions of our brothers and sisters who have been forced to become refugees. A particularly harrowing dimension of this tragedy is illegal human trafficking. In his prayer Intention for February, Pope Francis asks us to confront this reality that faces contemporary humanity, asking us to “Listen to the Migrants'...
As disciples of Christ we have an agenda. There are some important things we must do. There is a ‘bucket-list’ quality about these goals: we should do them before we die.The details of this agenda are summed up in our ambition to receive Jesus into our life and to share him with others.  He, as a little child, entered the temple in Jerusalem very discretely.  Yet this was God taking possession of his house. O gates, lift up your heads, grow higher ancient doors.  Let him enter...
Jesus calls us to follow him. His call has all the authority of God. It is however an invitation to which we respond in complete freedom. Enlightened by the Holy Spirit, we followers of Christ find ourselves liberated from many burdens and difficulties. The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light; on those who live in a land of deep shadow a light has shone.[1] Furthermore, our discipleship is not a new kind of imprisonment replacing the old ones from which we have been...
Seeing Jesus coming towards him. John said, ‘Look there is the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world’ [1].  The Lord approached John the Baptist and revealed himself as the lamb of God.  Christ comes near to us and enables us to recognise him as our saviour.  Seeing Jesus is a consequence of his coming towards those whom he empowers to recognise him. To be able to say ‘look there is the lamb of God’ is a gift from the one who transforms our thinking and our speaking....
We are immersed in God. The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit surround us.  The Holy Trinity made us, holds us in being and shares divine life with us. God is the frame for all that happens to us, everything we do.  At the incarnation, the Son wades into the world and sanctifies it by his presence.  Sent by the Father, he launches into redeeming us and transforming us.  The Spirit continues to float over the waters [1], sanctifying and purifying.  As soon as Jesus was...
Go and find out all about the child. And when you have found him let me know so that I too may go and do him homage [1].  Herod has no intention of doing any homage.  He wants information so that he can eliminate what he perceives to be a threat.  We too would be glad to find out all about the child.  We seek knowledge of Christ.  Unlike Herod, we are not, most of us, seeking to destroy the one about whom we would like to know more.  However, like Herod, our...
DAVID STEWART SJ REFLECTS ON THE POPE'S JANUARY INTENTION - PEACE IN THE WORLDEach new calendar year begins, for the Holy Father and all Catholic Christians, with a heartfelt plea for peace. Pope Paul VI proposed that January 1st, the Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God, be dedicated to the cause of universal peace, and so this Day of Prayer was first observed on New Year’s Day, 1968. Each year since, the Pontiffs have issued important statements and messages for this day. Pope Francis has...
Let the message of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you [1].  In Nazareth, with Mary and Joseph, Jesus Christ was at home.  The Lord’s message first expressed itself in the holy family.  Mary and Joseph, disciples [2], treasured the words of Jesus [3].  Understanding grew in that household of faith. The authority exercised by Joseph and Mary was shaped by their coming to appreciate what it was that the Father sought from the Son [4]. In the security of family...
When Joseph woke up he did what the angel of the Lord had told him to do [1].  Advent, until the very end, is a summons to wakefulness. The coming of the Lord demands our attention. The season of preparation is an exercise in being alert to what God is doing and saying. Attentiveness to God gives rise to obedience to his commands.  Clarity about what to do accompanies the revelation of God incarnate.The Lord himself will give you a sign [2].  The long and continuing history of...
John in his prison had heard what Christ was doing [1].  The advent of the Lord makes itself known in the deepest dungeon. That the saviour is so near delights all who have been hoping for him including those who are suffering. Advent joy takes hold of us although life may be very hard.  The invitation to prepare joyfully for the arrival of Jesus addresses itself to people in all sorts of difficulties.  Like John the Baptist, they may be awaiting death in some dark, cold place...

Pages