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Almsgiving as an act of mercy

March 20th, 2017 Posted in Uncategorized

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Catholic News Service

We all recognize Lent as a time of sacrifice, a time to prepare ourselves for the commemoration of Jesus Christ’s passion, death and resurrection. Traditionally, there are three pillars of this intensely spiritual and ascetic period that can help us grow in charity and perfect penitence: prayer, fasting and almsgiving.

Prayer and fasting are the most widely understood of these three pillars, as is their connection to the 40 days of Lent. In these 40 days, we unite ourselves with Christ in the desert, as he prepared for his ministry. He fasted; he fervently prayed. But did he give alms? Read more »

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Ash Wednesday: Rituals and symbols

February 23rd, 2017 Posted in Uncategorized Tags: ,

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Catholic News Service

Our society is not one that readily embraces the idea of sacrifice. There is little recognition of the profound benefits of self-denial and of giving completely of oneself to others — and to God.

All the more reason, then, for us as Catholics to actively live out the ideals of the penitential season of Lent. One way to prepare ourselves is to better understand the roots and symbolism of the season and the day that starts it all: Ash Wednesday. Read more »

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What is ‘holy leisure’?

January 26th, 2017 Posted in Uncategorized

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Catholic News Service

The Fathers of the Church often spoke of the concept of “otium sanctum,” or “holy leisure.” In the later works of St. Augustine, he would use this term to refer to the monastic life, in which the monk is free of everyday obligations and can devote his time to study and prayer.

However, it is not only the cloistered who are called to live this “otium sanctum”: all are to live lives of holy leisure. Read more »

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