Bridging the Great Divide

I spend a great deal of time, reading and listening to Bishop Barron & Christopher West in addition to Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI.
This video gives some great insight to the mission of the Church, it is not either/ or but both/and.

We often find two groups in the Church in tension with each other: those concerned with the liturgy and those concerned with social justice.

On this week’s episode of the Word on Fire Show, Brandon Vogt and Bishop Barron discuss how to bridge this great divide, and why we should have enthusiasm for both the liturgy and the Church’s social doctrine.

Click the video below to watch this week’s episode of the Word on Fire Show.

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Be the Sign…

In today’s Gospel reading from Luke 11:29-32, we read Jesus making the statement.
“This … is an evil generation; it seeks a sign, but no sign will be given it.”
We can be upset or disturbed about Jesus’ tone or implication but there is another option. Maybe instead of seeking, searching or waiting for a sign, we can spend our time becoming a sign.

With this mindset, we can ‘take up the cross and follow Christ’, not into suffering and hardship but into becoming a sign that this generation needs. DG

The Rise of Euthanasia

Last week I listened to this podcast from Bishop Barron, and this morning it was sent to my inbox … I am taking it as a indication that it needs to be shared.
We need to continue to pray that families realize the dignity of life and meaning of service and suffering.

Peace,
DG

Do we have a right to choose how and when we die? Should we be worried about the rapid rise of euthanasia, including in the United States?

Euthanasia has been in the news lately thanks to reports out of Canada, where last year, over 10,000 Canadians ended their lives via euthanasia. Those numbers are sure to go up, as Canada has loosened restrictions so that people can now choose euthanasia not only to avoid pain and suffering in the face of terminal disease, but simply for “mental health reasons.”

On today’s episode of the Word on Fire Show, Brandon Vogt and Bishop Barron discuss these alarming trends and how to make the case that life is worth living.

Click the video below to watch this week’s episode of the Word on Fire Show.

How many times does God knock me off of my horse?

This morning during my regular prayer time … what I found myself reflecting on just how many times God knock me off of my house. I guess if I had a horse its name would be Pride, envy, gluttony, lust … I think you can recognize my pattern.

Today we celebrate the conversion of Saul … it is safe to say that we can all relate to his conversion … we all charge ahead on ideas, opinions and decisions that we believe are correct and true.

Here is a quote from Pope Francis for prayer and reflection

“[Paul] was consistent, because he was a man open to God. If he persecuted Christians, it was because he was convinced that God desired it. But how can that be? Never mind how: he was convinced of it. This is the zeal he carried for the purity of the house of God, for the glory of God. A heart open to the voice of the Lord. And he risked all, and charged ahead. Another characteristic of his actions is that he was a docile man – full of docility – and was not hard-headed.”

My Reading Table for 2023

Each year, during some of the quiet moments of Christmas. I look through my library and pull out some books that I have collected over the past year and add them to my reading table. It is a small goal that I set for myself to ‘read these books’ in the upcoming year.

Some of the books like JPII’s Theology of the Body and the Christopher West commentary have been on my reading table for at least two years, I am working through them, about half way through each.

Here is my reading table for 2023…

Into the next Season…

We are one day into ordinary time … it is good to remember that ordinary is not boring. Ordinary time is ordered … this is where we see if there was an impact or progress from the previous celebratory season.
What was my attitude and my openness to God during Advent and the Christmas season?
Did I move deeper into or closer in my relationship with God?

Looking through some notes I made of an EKSB podcast a while back, points to how we are called to look at our Journey.

“… In JPII teachings, he wants to show a clear line between Kingdom-Church-Christ
Christ is the King, he brings the Kingdom – Church is the seed and sign, the anticipation instrument of the Kingdom – Church looks for its own ultimate fulfillment in the Kingdom.

So you can never separate the Church from the Kingdom, Church from Christ.

You can never separate the kingdom from Christ….. But we do….

be blessed
DG

Three Questions to Ponder

A while back, I came across an ‘Every Knee shall Bow’ podcast with Dave and Gomer … as we begin each new year we seem to take some time to reflect on areas that we would like to improve, change in an effort to better live out the plan that God created us for.

Here are 3 Question to ponder:
1- If you are Christian, you are to evangelize, who are you a missionary?
2- Do you just seek knowledge, or are you out there demonstrating mercy(Think the Corporal acts of mercy)?
3- When you seek healing is it so you come closer to Christ, or are you just looking for feel better healing?
Healing needs to be a sign of coming closer to Christ.

May you be Blessed in 2023
DG

Hunger Awareness Challenge – Day 5

Day # 5 – September 23rd

Did the food last all 5 days?
Actually, I did have some food let over, it was a few canned goods, meat and bread. This would be a result of self-rationing the first few days of the challenge.
The Agape Centre was generous in the food that was given out; this would be the response to the fact that they have generous corporate and private donors.

How has this experience changed your way of thinking and looking at hunger?
Not to repeat some of the observations from previous posts, I will attempt to summarize.
The hunger issue is so much more than simply filling empty stomachs, this is what is visible and maybe most easily remedied through donations.
There is a hunger for companionship and to have their story heard.
A hunger for the healing of a past situation or setback.
Too often when we are on the outside looking in, we don’t bother to take the time to understand or listen, we just assume and move on.

What have you learned?
Every deserves the dignity of feeling safe and loved and this requires us to step outside our own comfortable place and be risk getting involved, seeing a different point of view, and maybe even being moved to change.
We are all good with change as long as it is someone else doing the changing, but to truly solve the issue of hunger, homelessness and marginalization, it is the people who feel that they do not have to change that need to do the most changing.

What have I learned that there is still so much work and awareness that needs to be done.
We need to keep the conversation going…

Hunger Awareness Challenge – Day # 4

Day # 4 – September 22nd

Have you spent any of your $10 grocery allowance? If yes, on what?
What is the hardest part of the challenge?

I did not make a special trip to the grocery store to spend the $10, I did use some green onions in a supper, so I guess I spent maybe a $1.00.

The hardest part of the challenge would be best answered through some observations:
– Stamina: I knew that I only needed to experience this for five days, so it is easier to get through the discomfort, during the five days I did not have any family or public celebrations or get-together that would have any social conventions attached.
– Comfort: I went about my days pretty normal except for my meals, and even them I did not have to worry about how I was going to prepare them, I had access to everything I needed to ensure that I could enjoy the best meal possible.
My daily schedule was minimally disrupted but was also a distraction to some food boredom and changes.
– Safety: I had a warm safe place to stay each and every night, i may have been hard to deal for the challenge if I needed to use additional energy to keep warm or walk around.
– Companionship: I did have an awareness of being separated, not being able to enjoy what others were enjoying, eating something different or not being able to join in.

All these are tolerable for five days … but as an ongoing concern they become another issue to contend with.

Hunger Awareness Challenge – Day #3

Day #3 – September 21st

Are the limited food choices affecting your physical or emotional health? If so, how?

The limited food choices seem to be affecting my emotional health noticeably more than my physical health. After Tuesday it became clear that with the food provided, I would not be hungry, and this Hunger challenge would be more of a mental challenge than it would be a hungry challenge.
Those of us that have not experienced the setbacks in life that would require us to seek out the service of food banks and soup kitchens, do not understand that most of our homes have small scale grocery stores in our own pantry, freezer and fridges.

The limited food choices changed the comfort foods or eating routines that I take for granted and reach for.
How often do we reach for a quick bite of something to relax or get a quick boost of energy or comfort? or maybe we change up dinner or head to a drive thru to satisfy a craving or whim.

Over the past few days, I did notice how we much advertising we receive for fast food, just today alone I found six coupon books in the mailbox. Pretty sure, these would not be the best use of my $10.