Friends in college would immediately identify me as an artist. I created visual art until 2010, then drifted from it without class assignments and trajectory. At this same time God guided me toward professional ministry, a path that has been filled with consolations. As I lived into this, I found vitality in studying theology and the wells of its richness. This study and living theology became the new way I identified myself and was identified by others. Usually around wintertime, I experienced a very convincing urge to continue formal study, which would catch me in a confusing circle of discernment. Each time, I was excited and convicted of the nudge for a short while, but as I immersed myself in the thought of further education, something held me back and it would wear away.
To engage young people in reflection on their own gifts, the McGrath Institute developed Discerning Your Spiritual Gifts: A Toolkit for Faith Formation as an activity for the McGrath presence at the National Catholic Youth Conference in 2017. Through an interactive questionnaire, young people name the qualities that they identify with, then learn more about twelve saints who embodied these qualities. The resource also provides directions for a keychain activity where young people can create a tangible reminder of the insights gained through participating in this activity.
Yesterday’s post discussed the human need for counsel on the path to heaven, an important point for today’s feast of Our Lady of Good Counsel. It is the virtue of docility, or “teachableness,” that opens our hearts and minds to receive counsel from prudent friends, mentors and teachers who are also seeking holiness.
It is not good for man to be alone (Gen. 2:18).
The ol’ rugged individualism used to be a mark of American pride, but our culture is discovering the folly of self-reliance.