What does spiritual maturity look like? Instead of laying forth specific criteria, let us enter into an imaginative contemplation of the parable of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11–32) as inspiration for creative consideration of the call to grow in authenticity and intimacy with Christ.
Somewhere between New Hampshire and November, American Catholics enter an increasingly complicated conversation with their fellow citizens. Navigating contests of “powerful interests, partisan attacks, sound bites, and media hype,” Catholics seek guidance from their Church in creating “a different kind of political engagement: one shaped by the moral convictions of well-formed consciences and focused on the dignity of every human being, the pursuit of the common good, and the protection of the weak and the vulnerable.” But conscience formation begins long before faithful citizens find their updated voting guides and issue scorecards. It begins with an invitation, and an act of discipleship, and Eucharist. Faithful citizenship begins with Jesus Christ.
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.
This cold and dreary season is a time of waiting. Snow has grown stale, and we’re waiting for the flowers to bud; the joy of Christmas has passed, and we’re waiting for the vitality of Easter. Yet the Church reminds us that this Ordinary Time between great feasts is precisely the time for the spiritual growth that flows from delving more deeply into the mystery of Christ. Thankfully, even the tedium of waiting itself can contribute to our spiritual life! To see how, we need look no further than the virtue of longanimity.