Gratefulness, The Heart of Prayer

  • Fullness And Emptiness—Alive by Brother David Steindl-Rast
    From: Gratefulness, The Heart of Prayer This book explores ways of coming more fully alive.  Self-fulfillment is a value of which we are conscious today.  But we sometimes fail to notice that people who live fulfilled lives are surprisingly selfless.  At moments when we experience life in fullness, we are, if not selfless, at least self-forgetful.  Don’t we all know this from experience? The fullness for which the human heart longs is always available.  But we cannot lay hold of [...]
Newly added

PILGRIMAGE: Saint Gervais, Paris—Expecting Help by Albert Holtz

From: Pilgrim Road The Church of Saints Gervais et Protais stands in the Marais, one of the oldest neighborhoods in Paris.  The first church that stood on this spot was a favorite of Saint Germain, Bishop of Paris about the year 550.  King Louis XIII laid the foundation stone for the present [...]

The Wilderness

  • The Wilderness—Where We Feel Our Limitations by Brian & Candice Simmons
    From The Wilderness The truth of the wilderness is a strange truth to most of us.  Why would God actually lead us into a wilderness?  Our Heavenly Leader will sometimes take us to a place where we are limited, walled in, and hindered from going forward.  This is the first wilderness the Hebrews had to pass through, and so will we.  It is the wilderness of Shur. Moses led Israel onward from the Red Sea into the Wilderness of Shur.  For three [...]

The Good of Giving Up

  • Learning To Love The Future by Aaron Damiani
    From The Good of Giving Up Maybe your Easter service is held at sunrise at the beach, where new Christians shout their testimonies from the water before being submerged in the name of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Or perhaps you brew several pots of coffee and squeeze in every last folding chair in the living room that hosts your house church.  It could be that you gather at midnight in a cathedral to welcome Easter with incense, choirs, and bells.  Or you might wear your best hats [...]

Pilgrim Road


  • Psalm 74 by W. Robert Godfrey
    From Learning to Love the Psalms The personal crisis of faith of the psalmist in Psalm 73 was resolved for him when he entered the temple.  But the crisis of faith in Psalm 74 is a crisis for the whole nation, because the enemies of God’s people have destroyed the temple.  The temple as God’s dwelling with his people and his promise of salvation seemed secure forever.  That security was the promise of psalm 48.  But now the temple is in ruins.  The psalmist writes as if he observed the [...]

The Way of the Cross

  • 11 Jesus Is Nailed To The Cross by Caryll Houselander
    From The Way of the Cross  There was an hour of terrible darkness at the beginning of his Passion, when Christ was overwhelmed by the anticipation of the suffering he was to go through, when the vision of the evil for which he was to bear the shame overwhelmed him, and the utter loneliness in which he must face and accept the anguish of spirit that seemed to be beyond human endurance crushed him to the ground.  Those whom he loved, for whom he was going to accept this dreadful suffering and [...]

Boris Pasternak

  • Like A Brazier’s Bronze Cinders by Boris Pasternak
    Like a brazier’s bronze cinders, the sleepy garden’s beetles flowing. Level with me, and my candle, a flowering world is hanging. As if into unprecedented faith, I cross into this night, where the poplar’s beaten grey veils the moon’s rim from sight. Where the pond’s an open secret, where apple-trees whisper of waves, where the garden hanging on piles, holds the sky before its [...]

Come, Creator Spirit

  • Water And Thirsty Soil by Raniero Cantalamessa
    From: Come, Creator Spirit Now, to apply what we have seen in a practical way, let’s call again to our help the symbol of “Sister Water.”  Water is something that always runs down, never up.  It is always trying to find the lowest place.  So it is with the Holy Spirit: the Spirit loves to visit and fill the lowly, the humble, those who know their own emptiness.  Francis of Assisi, in his Canticle of Brother Sun, makes water a symbol of humility: “Praised be you, my Lord, through [...]

The Dusty Ones

  • Banished (part one) by A. J. Swoboda
    From The Dusty Ones Return, O Wanderer, to thy home, Thy Father calls for thee; No longer now an exile roam In guilt and misery; Return, return Return, O wanderer, to thy home, ‘Tis Jesus calls for thee: The Spirit and the bride say, Come; Oh now for refuge flee; Return, return. Return, O wanderer, to thy home, ‘Tis madness to delay: There are no pardons in the tomb And brief is mercy’s day. Return, return. (Thomas Hastings, “Return, O Wanderer”)   “In the beginning God….” [...]

Lenten sermons

  • A Sermon Of Saint Augustine On The Gospel For The Fourth Sunday In Lent
    Jesus went over the Sea of Galilee, which is the sea of Tiberias. And a great multitude followed him, because they saw his miracles which he did on them that were diseased. And Jesus went up into a mountain, and there he sat with his disciples. And the Passover, a feast of the Jews, was nigh. When Jesus then lift up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, “Whence shall we buy bread, that these may eat?” (And this he said to prove him; for he himself knew what [...]

Lenten poetry

The Breastplate of Fursa

The Breastplate Of FursaMay the yoke of the Law of God be upon this shoulder,
The coming of the Holy Spirit on this head,
The sign of Christ on this forehead;
The hearing of the Holy Spirit in these ears,
The smelling of the Holy Spirit in this nose;
The vision that the people of Heaven have be in these eyes,
The speech of the people of Heaven in this mouth;
The work of the church of God in these hands,
The good of God and of neighbor in these feet.
May God dwell in this heart,
And this person belong entirely to God, the Father.

Lenten prayers

A Quote From Thomas Merton

Popular religion has to a great extent betrayed man’s inner spirit and turned him over, like Samson, with his hair cut off and his eyes dug out, to turn the mill of a self-frustrating and self-destroying culture. The clichés of popular religion have in many cases become every bit as hollow and as false as those of soap salesmen, and far more dangerously deceptive because one cannot so easily verify the claims made about the product. This sin of religiosity is that it has turned God, peace, happiness, salvation, and all that man desires into products to be marketed in an especially attractive package deal.

Psalm 74

74: O God, why hast thou cast us off forever? why doth thine anger smoke against the sheep of thy pasture?


2 Remember thy congregation, which thou hast purchased of old; the rod of thine inheritance, which thou hast redeemed; this mount Zion, wherein thou hast dwelt.


3 Lift up thy feet unto the perpetual desolations; even all that the enemy hath done wickedly in the sanctuary.


4 Thine enemies roar in the midst of thy congregations; they set up their ensigns for signs.


5 A man was famous according as he had lifted up axes upon the thick trees.


6 But now they break down the carved work thereof at once with axes and hammers.


7 They have cast fire into thy sanctuary, they have defiled by casting down the dwelling place of thy name to the ground.


8 They said in their hearts, Let us destroy them together: they have burned up all the synagogues of God in the land.


9 We see not our signs: there is no more any prophet: neither is there among us any that knoweth how long.


10 O God, how long shall the adversary reproach? shall the enemy blaspheme thy name forever?


11 Why withdrawest thou thy hand, even thy right hand? pluck it out of thy bosom.


12 For God is my King of old, working salvation in the midst of the Earth.


13 Thou didst divide the sea by thy strength: thou brakest the heads of the dragons in the waters.


14 Thou brakest the heads of leviathan in pieces, and gavest him to be meat to the people inhabiting the wilderness.


15 Thou didst cleave the fountain and the flood: thou driedst up mighty rivers.


16 The day is thine, the night also is thine: thou hast prepared the light and the sun.


17 Thou hast set all the borders of the Earth: thou hast made summer and winter.


18 Remember this, that the enemy hath reproached, O Lord, and that the foolish people have blasphemed thy name.


19 O deliver not the soul of thy turtledove unto the multitude of the wicked: forget not the congregation of thy poor forever.


20 Have respect unto the covenant: for the dark places of the Earth are full of the habitations of cruelty.


21 O let not the oppressed return ashamed: let the poor and needy praise thy name.


22 Arise, O God, plead thine own cause: remember how the foolish man reproacheth thee daily.


23 Forget not the voice of thine enemies: the tumult of those that rise up against thee increaseth continually.