April 2015 – Review

Highlights:

  • Chrism Mass
  • Easter Triduum at Abbey
  • VC vs. Seminarian Bball game
  • Reading Therese stuff again
  • Sports Day & Spirit Week
  • Finishing 1st year of Seminary

Spirituality:

Therese’s Little Way 

  • I want to love you like a little child, I want to battle like a warrior bold
    • The child & warrior keep each other in check, two wings that allow us to soar.

1. Present Moment

  • All I have is today to love & serve God. Transform daily routine into holy events. What is the yes you are asking me to make today? “We must make good use of this life’s brief day”. God’s grace is sufficient for today.  What is your deepest desire today?? To love God & make Him loved! = Goodwill. 

A. Acts of Courage

  • “Do all in your power to detach yourself from earthly care”. God never refuses the first grace = courage of self conquest. “Believe me, the writing of pious books, the composing of the sublimest poetry, all that does not equal the smallest act of self-denial”. What does it matter if you are devoid of courage, provided that you act as though you possess it? Therese preferred to be charged unjustly so she can gladly offer this injustice to God. The more of these you have, the easier the victory. When misunderstood & judged unfavorably, what benefit do we derive from defending ourselves? Blessed silence which gives such peace to the soul.

B. Acts of Love

  • “Do not fear to tell Jesus that you love him, even though you may not feel that love. In this way, you will compel him to come to your aid, and to carry you like a little child who is too weak to walk.” Our Lord loves the children that greet him with a smile. We must approach Jesus by his heart. “The smallest work of pure love is more useful to the Church than all other works together” – St J of C.  transform everything I do into prayer = place initials at top of page to offer it up for someone.

C. Acts of Trust

  • “It is wrong to pass one’s time in fretting, instead of sleeping on the heart of Jesus” “Jesus punish me with a kiss so that I will never offend you again”

Therese on humility

  • You wish to climb the mountain, whereas Jesus wishes you to descend it. He is waiting for you in the fruitful valley of humility.

Therese on prayer

  • God does not ask us to pray well, but to be faithful to prayer.

Therese on reconciling with God

  • “Punish me with a kiss”
    • Jesus loves the prodigal son to come home.
  • “All the multitude of offences would be like a drop of water falling into a blazing furnace.”

Therese on discouragement

  • Discouragement is the #1 danger in the spiritual life b/c we are trusting in ourselves and our deeds.

Therese on perfect charity

  • Bear other’s faults – never speak about it to others & pray for them & make sacrifices.
  • Do not be surprised by their weaknesses.
  • Be edified by the tiniest acts of virtue you see.

Therese secret for getting out of spiritual slump

  • Perform little acts of charity.

Therese on gratitude

  • never let an opportunity pass by where you aren’t giving thanks to God & others.
  • St Teresa of Avila feared a discontented sister more than a swarm of devils.

Spiritual Direction

  • Saints are rigorous on themselves, indulgent to others.
  • Satisfaction of desires should bear witness that something greater exists.
  • Allow no desires to take away from your attentiveness to God.
  • How you approach exam week will be how to approach the priesthood.
    • You can’t lose peace for supposedly “good” reasons & then plan to get it back afterwards.
  • The 4 pillars of priestly formation (human, pastoral, spiritual, academic) has turned into 1 pillar (academic) and 3 toothpicks. Better to not get an A in the class & get an A in peace. If you justify it now, you will always justify it.
  • Priest = master of spiritual life & builder of community.

How to make decisions

  • When I do not know what to do, I question love, for love is the best counsellor!” ~ St Faustina

New habits:

  • Visit Jesus every hour at seminary chapel.
  • Litany of Truths
    • I will peacefully & patiently accept & treasure my inner poverty.
    • I will peacefully & patiently accept the inner poverty of others.

Spiritual Combat

  • Appetite is the captain of our corrupt nature, it’s madly bent on seeking pleasure & satisfaction. We must seperate the material & spiritual components of food, draw mind to God & nothingness of object. Delight in God alone. Pray for grace to handle food.
  • Examen = 1. fall. 2. cause. 3. how much energy did I put into warring against it? and getting contrary virtue?

Jake Sessions

  • 1. What is something that I’ve learnt that makes summers go well?
  • 2. What are some pitfalls that are absolute must avoid?
  • 3. What I need to focus on is ______.
  • How do I rest well?
  • Who are you looking to receive affirmation from & how to do you play the game?
  • “The Father is always up to something good!”

Houselander on Suffering

  • “Suffering is the price of love: It is love that redeems, love that can heal the world, love that can save it. Suffering has no power in itself; it is only powerful to save when it is caused by love, and when it is the expression of love.” ~ Way of the Cross

Fr. Abbot

  • How to benefit more from the Liturgy
    • 1. know for certain that you are encountering Jesus
    • Prep for big feasts (novenas, read days prior, etc)
    • Repeat phrases from scripture you read/hear throughout the day.
    • Examen – do I remember how the Word of God spoke to me today?

Searching for & Maintaining Peace

  • Surface of lake = calm vs. agitated
  • More peace in my soul = more God acts through me.
  • “All reasons that cause me to lose peace are bad reasons”
  • Peace in the small stuff most important daily

“Lord give me the heart of a child & the awesome courage to live it out as an adult” ~ Catherine Doherty

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