Author: StEdward.com - Seeking Faith

Praying With Music

Besides love, music has been a defining factor in my life. You know how a favorite tune or set of lyrics get stuck in your mind and stay with you for days? When you pray with music written to draw you closer to God and you allow it to indwell, you are embraced in something heavenly, sometimes even holy. Whether experiencing a selection from a great Catholic Mass, like Fauré’s Paradisum from his Requiem Mass, or a worship song like, Hillsongs’ Oceans (Where Feet Will Fall),  take a moment today to recall one of your choice or choose one of mine linked below and spend time with it introspectively. This is prayer if it is entered into with that intent. Sometimes I am left with a fragment of lyrics or an image that reminds me of God’s love, or glory, or peace. I savor that reminder as a gift from God. Let God’s grace wash over you today by praying with music.

Oceans: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dy9nwe9_xzw

Paradisum: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RYgNoQnzMRI

by Gracie

Listening Heart Prayer

In the Rule of St. Benedict, the prologue begins with a very important instruction, listen by inclining the ear of your heart.” Can you imagine listening any deeper or with more intent? That is exactly what St. Benedict is telling his followers – to listen as deeply as possible – to listen with your heart. There is a long tradition among monastic writers which emphasizes the importance of silence in order to be present to God so that one can hear with the ear of the heart. How do we hear God’s voice? We hear God’s voice in the Scriptures, through other people and situations in our lives and most importantly through our prayers. Lent is a time of turning toward God while listening for God‘s word with the ear of the heart. God had a beautiful plan for listening when we were created with one mouth and two ears.

by Cathy

Keep A Spiritual Journal

It’s hard to write. I know. Some people find writing too labor intensive, too much work, or they can’t think of anything to write about. I enjoy writing and I have many journals dating back to when I was a teenager. A lot of words and doodling on a piece of blank paper soon became my prayers when I got older. It’s amazing to let your thoughts come to life with words on paper. The art of writing something down has power. It does not have to be poetic, or grammatically correct. If you take a few moments to write out your prayer for the day, your thoughts, intentions, and emotions; your pen will make a spiritual record of what you are physically and emotionally experiencing. You can then sit back and use it as a touchstone to draw strength, energy, courage, grace, and wisdom. Just start writing what comes to mind and that is your prayer for the day–spiritual encouragement for the soul.

by Liz

Sacrament of Matrimony February 6 2018

The sacrament of Matrimony was discussed at length in this week’s session. The Catholic approach to marriage as a holy covenant with God was the main illuminating concept. The wisdom of  Tom and Donna McDonald, married 51 years, was shared. Jack Robertson also shared his experience with annulment and remarriage. Their honest and heart-filled presentations touched everyone.

Podcast: https://seekingfaith.podbean.com/e/sacrament-of-matrimony-2018/

Busted Halo Video: http://bustedhalo.com/video/matrimony-why-make-it-catholic

Stations of the Cross

In every life there comes a morning when you wake up early and know the day will be tough from sunrise to sunset.  You look to tomorrow but today you must bear the sorrow. We all face these days, as Jesus did on his way to the cross. Although our tribulations are all different, we too are called to carry the weight of grief. The Stations of the Cross are a visual reminder of how we should carry our burdens to completion. It is a blessing to have that visual of Jesus’s sacred way. Standing in front of each station is a good time to reflect and ask for strength. During Lent, we get an opportunity to pray the stations after daily mass and Fridays after evening mass. On March 23rd the students will act out the “Living Stations of the Cross.”.I invite you to attend and meditate on the sorrowful way. This special time will help us “Make Room for Prayer,” thank God for our passion. After all, He’s alive and we’re forgiven.

by Diego

Incarnate Prayer

Abba, thank you for this old body, well used and worn, hands calloused, eyes failing, yet still, until death, the birdcage of my soul. You knitted Your Spirit to my flesh while I was still turning in my mother’s womb. To you O Lord this body has bowed and knelt. It has signed itself with your holy cross and made hand chapels in prayer. It has been an incarnate prayer, embracing the unlovable, smiling at grumpy men, reaching out in consolation, and kissing a baby’s cheek.  May this body, so miraculously and wonderfully made, animated by Your Spirit, be a living prayer this day in service to your children and in celebration of Your creation.   Amen.

by Andrew

Praying in Community

There was a time in my life when I never missed daily Mass. In the parish I lived in at the time, our pastor used to celebrate what some of us called a “flash mass” because we would be out in twenty minutes. There was no excuse for me not to go since I passed the church on my way to work. At some point, I stopped doing this; it may have been when I moved and our Church was “in town” and I lived “in the country.” One of the “Eight New Year’s Resolutions for Catholics” was to go to Mass one extra day a week. I think I will do that and pray that it once again becomes a habit.  I will make room in my busyness for this short time to start (or finish) my day sharing God’s greatest gift to us in community with our Church. (Daily mass is at 8:15 a.m. and 5:30 p.m.)

by JAM

The Catholic Olympics

 

Lent is always a busy time for me since I work in church ministry. I laughingly call it the “Catholic Olympics,”complete with the triathlon of Holy Week. Since the Winter Olympics are in the news now, the metaphor has heightened my awareness.  Do I have the strength to complete a “quad” (the retreats) or can do a perfect downhill run without faltering (the Scrutinies)? I know I need quality nourishment so every night when I close my eyes, I pray one of the psalms, usually, Psalm 23, “The Lord is my shepherd,” or Psalm 130, “Out of the depths I cry to you O Lord.,” or Psalm 100, “Cry out with joy to the Lord, all the earth.” Using the Scriptures to pray is called “Lectio Divina,” divine reading, an ancient monastic method. How did I learn these psalms by heart? I read them often, for many years. Frequently, sleep comes before the last refrain but when I awake in the morning, the words play again like a favorite song in my head. Then I am ready to face whatever challenge the spiritual events of Lent require.

by DC