Prayer to the Holy Spirit

Come, O Holy Spirit:
enlighten my understanding 
to know your commands;
strengthen my heart 
against the wiles of the enemy; inflame my will...
I have heard your voice, 
and I don't want to harden my heart to resisting, 
by saying 'later... tomorrow.'
Nunc coepi! Now! 
Lest there be no tomorrow for me!
O, Spirit of truth and wisdom,
Spirit of understanding and counsel,
Spirit of joy and peace!
I want what you want, 
I want it because you want it,
I want it as you want it, 
I want it when you want it.



Entering the Kingdom by Violence

600-Jesus-AdulterousWoman570cropBy Fr. John Henry Hanson, O. Praem. 

If “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (Jas 4:6), then we must begin to see the contradictions and incongruities of life as coming from a God who is ever looking for an entry point into our lives. The only opening for grace in a fallen world—or even in an unfallen world—is humility, which is the truth (or reality) about ourselves. The humble person, rooted in the reality of who he is and what he needs to be saved from, is ready to accept the Providential mix of good and evil, virtue and vice, the ugly and the beautiful, as the basic ingredients of life and the stuff of sanctity. 


The Gift is not Like the Trespass: A Reflection on the Parable of the Prodigal Son

Italian Neapolitan - The Return of the Prodigal Son - Google Art ProjectcropBy Fr. John Henry Hanson, O. Praem. 

“'I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance' (Lk 15:7). To know that God values our conversion that dearly makes every detail of the parable of the Prodigal Son resonate, as though it were our life story. 'Human life is in some way a constant returning to our Father’s house,' St Josemaria agrees. Indeed, 'the story of the prodigal son repeats itself in our lives,' as often as 'every day, and even repeatedly during the twenty-four hours of the same day'" (cf. Christ is Passing By, nos. 64, 91; Friends of God, no. 214). 


You Have Prepared a Table Before Me: Finding Mercy at Matthew’s Table

jesus-summons-matthew-to-leave-the-tax-office 3By Fr. John Henry Hanson, O. Praem. 

"At the beginning of Lent, this Gospel teaches us too how to become Christ’s welcome table-fellows. But the table to which He now calls us is that Table which is also an altar of sacrifice, an empty tomb, the most privileged place of our communion with God. We cannot think of Matthew’s table without also thinking of the other, because the table of sinners and the altar from which we partake of the Lord are one and the same table. It is the place where our deepest needs are met with God’s infinite bounty.


"The Conversion of the Children of God" (Lent)

3garamcrop By St. Josemaria Escriva

"'We are at the beginning of Lent: a time of penance, purification and conversion. It is not an easy program, but then Christianity is not an easy way of life."


You Have Enlarged My Heart to Run in the Way of Your Commands: The Presentation of the Lord and the Year of Consecrated Life

presentation-of-christ-in-the-templecropBy Fr. John Henry Hanson, O. Praem. 

"Traditionally a celebration of the consecrated life, the Feast of the Lord’s Presentation forms an especially meaningful moment in the Year of Consecrated Life proclaimed by the Holy Father (November 2014-February 2016). Pope Francis has invited religious and laity alike to cultivate a deep gratitude for a state of life which uniquely displays the work of God’s grace. Just as reverence for the priesthood and religious life are, according to St Josemaria, unmistakable signs of love for God’s Church, so such veneration also shows a fuller appreciation for what God’s grace can do in the lives of otherwise weak sinners (cf. The Way, no. 526)." 


Faith Like That of the Magi

the-adoration-of-the-magi.jpgcropBy Fr. John Henry Hanson, O. Praem. 

"Our world, our families, our lives, are in a disarray that only God’s hand can untangle and set right. We must follow His star, the star that leads us away from our ways of thinking and acting, and into the presence of Christ and His mother. Keeping our eyes trained on the guiding light of God’s will prevents us from focusing too narrowly on the secondary things that He uses to bring us where we need to be."


"Christ Triumphs through Humility" (Christmas)

Ruta-del-belen-de-Aragon-Torreciudad-crop By St. Josemaria Escriva

"'This day shall light shine upon us; for the Lord is born to us.' This is the great announcement which moves Christians today. Through them it is addressed to all mankind. God is here. This truth should fill our lives, and every Christmas should be for us a new and special meeting with God, when we allow his light and grace to enter deep into our soul."


"Am I Not Your Mother?" Our Lady of Guadalupe and the Vocation of Women

47cropBy Fr. John Henry Hanson, O. Praem. 

"Our Lady is the Mother of God, exalted above the heavens as Queen of heaven and earth—but she is still our Mother, the sister of our flesh. She is of our kind. It is hard for us to combine in our imagination her great majesty and her concern for the humblest events and struggles that make up our lives—but it is true. That is what mothers do. And that is what our Lady came to Guadalupe to tell us."


Fulfilling the Fiat: Responding with Mary to God’s Call

the-virgin-of-the-annunciation-cropBy Fr. John Henry Hanson, O. Praem. 

"If the consequences of the Immaculate Conception are displayed by the obedience of the Annunciation, then the Annunciation shows what our response to the dogma of the Immaculate Conception should be: unyielding fidelity to the Lord, with a firm confidence that 'For God, nothing will be impossible' (Lk 1:37). Our Mother learned what these words meant for her and she will teach us what Divine possibilities can open up in our lives if we too respond trustingly and wholeheartedly to the Lord’s calls."


Returning to Bethlehem

SJE-bambinocropBy Fr. John Henry Hanson, O. Praem. 

"It might come as a shock to find out that Advent is more about preparing for the second coming of Christ than for the first. Or better: Advent teaches us that the same attitude we have toward the first coming is the same we will have toward the second. Both the readings and prayers of this season reveal this unmistakable focus: Our purpose is not only to celebrate the past event of the Incarnation, but also to prepare for the future coming of Christ the Lord."


"May you seek Christ, May you find Christ, May you love Christ." - St. Josemaria Escriva

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