"Here God and the devil struggle, and the battlefield is the human heart." - Fyodor M. Dostoyevsky
"As long as we live, we fight, and as long as we are fighting, that is a sign that we are not defeated and that the good Spirit dwells within us. And if death does not meet you as the victor, he should find you a warrior." - St. Augustine
1) The Battle of Prayer; Lent: Period of Purification and Enlightenment; The Stations of the Cross
2) CCC 357, 2559, 2725-2745 (YOUCAT 505-510)
Why is there a struggle when we pray? Where does this struggle come from or what is it's cause? How does our struggle in prayer correlate with our struggle in life with evil, both involuntarily and voluntarily experienced? How does that struggle, as difficult as it is, help us focus on what is most important? Where and how can we find the help necessary to make our prayers meaningful and effective?
My Lord and my God, take from me everything that distances me from you. My Lord and my God, give me everything that brings me closer to you. My Lord and my God, detach me from myself to give my all to you. Amen.
St. Therese of Lisieux
Do I pray when I know I should, even when I am tempted otherwise? Do I persevere in prayer when it is difficult to continue on?
The Battle of Prayer
Bishop Barron on the Disorienting Quality of Real Prayer
Tips for Praying
The Power of Prayer
Praying in a State of Mortal Sin
Getting a Spiritual Director
No Spiritual Director? No Problem!
Spiritual Life Part I (Prayer)
Spiritual Life Part II (Mental Prayer)
Spiritual Life Part III (Obstacles in Prayer 1)
Spiritual Life Part IV (Obstacles in Prayer 2)
Spiritual Life Part V (Spiritual Reading)
Spiritual Life Part VI (Predominant Fault 1)
Spiritual Life Part VII (Predominant Fault 2)
Spiritual Life Part VIII (3 Stages of the Interior Life)
Spiritual Life Part IX (Grace)
Spiritual Life Part X (Actual Grace)
"For me, prayer is a surge of the heart; it is a simple look turned toward heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy." - St. Therese of Lisieux
1) Handouts: Forgiveness; The Lord’s Prayer; Aspects of Prayer; Introduction to Prayer; Jesus: Our Exemplar in Prayer; Types of Prayer; Christian Meditation; The Heights of Prayer: Contemplation; Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus; The Holy Rosary; Novenas
68 – What is prayer?
69 – What is the role of the body in prayer?
70 – What is the Our Father?
3) CCC 971, 1028, 1174-1178, 1674-1676, 2558-2854 (YOUCAT 469-527)
In what ways have I so far communicated with God? What does it mean to "pray always"? Why is prayer essential for our relationship with God and with others? How do we participate in God's work through prayer?
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed by thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
St. Teresa of Avila
We will spend eternity with God in heaven, how much time am I willing to spend with Him here on earth?
The Power of Prayer
Bishop Barron on the Lord's Prayer
The Rosary Album
Catholic Encyclopedia: The Lord's Prayer
Catholic Encyclopedia: Prayer
Why is confession so important? When I confess my sins, who am I being reconciled to, and why is this so important? What is necessary to make a good confession? What is perfect and imperfect contrition? When should I go to confession and how often? Even though it is not required, why is it beneficial to confess venial sins? When should I call on the priest for the Anointing of the Sick or Viaticum? How do both the Sacraments of Healing show God's Justice and His Mercy?
O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended Thee, and I detest all my sins because of Thy just punishments, but most of all because they offend Thee, my God, Who art all-good and deserving of all my love. I firmly resolve, with the help of Thy grace, to sin no more and to avoid the near occasions of sin. Amen.
St. Pio of Pietrelcina
Do I or am I prepared to confess all mortal sins in the Sacrament of Reconciliation? Do I examine my conscience often, even daily? Am I willing to make amends and do penance for my sins? Do I unite my sufferings with Christ's sufferings? Do I have compassion for those who suffer? Am I willing forgive as I have been forgiven?
Sophia Sketchpad: Confession
Outside da Box: How do I go to Confession?
"First Confession" Part 1
"First Confession" Part 2
Bishop Robert Barron - Why do I have to confess to a priest?
Tour of the Catechism #47 - Sacraments of Healing
Tour of the Catechism #48 - Reconciliation: Penitent, Minister, Effects
Tour of the Catechism #49 - Reconciliation: Penitent, Minster, Effects
No Apologies #98 - Confession 1
No Apologies #99 - Confession 2
Catholic Encyclopedia: Sacrament of Penance
Confession: A Pain that Ends in Joy
Tour of the Catechism #50 - Indulgences and Penance
No Apologies #100 - Indulgences-Scriptural
No Apologies #101 - Indulgences-Not "buying" forgiveness
No Apologies #102 - Indulgences-A fruit of Christ's Redemption
Primer on Indulgences
Myths About Indulgences
Tour of the Catechism #51 - Anointing of the Sick
Catholic Encyclopedia: Extreme Unction
Catholic Encyclopedia: Preparation for Death
Anointing of the Sick
What does it mean when the Church says the priest works in persona Christi? Why is apostolic succession so important for a proper understanding of Holy Orders? What is the difference between a bishop, and priest, and a deacon? Why is celibacy an important gift and discipline? Are all consecrated ministers, like monks and nuns, ordained ministers?
O God, you sent your Son, Jesus, to bring eternal life to those who believe. I join him in praying for laborers for your harvest. May your Holy Spirit inspire men and women to continue his mission through your priesthood, diaconate, religious life and lay ministry. May this same Spirit make known your will for my life. Amen.
St. John Vianney
Do I pray for my bishop, my priests, and my deacons?
Catholic Encyclopedia: Holy Orders
Bishop, Priest, and Deacon
Catholic Encyclopedia: Apostolic Succession
Catholic Encyclopedia: Celibacy of the Clergy
Celibacy and the Priesthood
Celibacy Is a Gift
Women & the Priesthood - Dr. Peter Kreeft
Priest or Priestess?
No Apologies #97 - Call No Man Father
Call No Man "Father"
"Love is perfected in fidelity." (Soren Kierkegaard)
Marriage, Sexuality, and Contraception; Matrimony; What is a Sacramental Marriage?
48 – What is Marriage?
49 – What is sex?
50 – What is sexual morality?
3) CCC 1127-1128, 1534-1535, 1601-1658, 2361-2377, 2685 (YOUCAT 260 - 271)
What is the difference between a sacramental marriage and a non-sacramental marriage? Why would Christ elevate marriage to a sacrament? Why is God's grace so important for marriage? How does marriage image the God who is Love? What does it mean to enter into a covenant with another person? How important are the marriage vows and how does one find the support to live them out? How can we help ourselves and those who have misunderstood the meaning marriage or have failed to live it out faithfully? What is an annulment? What is divorce?
Jesus, you chose to be born into a family with a married mother and father. We ask for courage as we stand with children, protecting their fundamental human right to know and be cared for by their mothers and fathers, as far as possible. May no child ever be intentionally deprived of his mother or father, without just cause. We ask the intercession of the Holy Family for laws that recognize marriage that unites a man and a woman with each other and any children born from their union. We pray for public institutions that encourage men and women to make themselves irreplaceable to each other in marriage in preparation to receive children as gifts. Grant us the grace and wisdom to participate in the evangelization of culture for marriage and family. Amen
St. Thomas Moore
Do I strive to live out the virtue of chastity no matter what my state in life? Am I faithful to my spouse in thought, in words, and in actions? Do I love my spouse like Christ loved me? Is my marriage truly a sign of Christ's relationship with His Bride, the Church?
Church Teaching on Marriage
Sophia Sketchpad: Marriage
Catholic Encyclopedia: Sacrament of Marriage
Catholic Encyclopedia: Ritual of Marriage
This forum is for participants of St. Mary's Living The Faith Series and RCIA.