The Scriptures remind us that the voice of God often comes in a still, small voice (1 Kings 19:11–13). Practice listening for God’s voice, and invite the Holy Spirit to speak to your group of Confirmation candidates, catechists, or other adults through a prayer service composed by Julianne Stanz. The prayer is inspired by Shhh…God Is in the Silence by Fiona Basile. A copy of the book is needed for the prayer service readings.
One thing that many catechists struggle with is how to prepare and lead a simple prayer experience in a faith formation setting. Too often, we find ourselves searching the Internet for an inspirational poem or quote that speaks to the occasion, and we end up reciting that as the prayer while everyone else listens. While such poems or quotes may indeed be inspirational, it is important that our prayer experiences are authentically Catholic. That doesn’t […]
Many contemplative practices involve the use of a mantra, or the repetitive uttering of a sacred word or group of words (or sometimes a sound) in order to deepen one’s focus, avoid distractions, and create a sense of calm that permits one to enter into an “altered state.” Too often, Catholics are suspicious of such practices, thinking of them as foreign to our tradition. Nothing could be further from the truth! One of the best examples […]
The Peace Prayer, usually associated with St. Francis of Assisi, is a popular traditional prayer. Download a coloring page to use in introducing or meditating on this prayer’s famous first line, “Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.” The Spanish version, “Señor, haz de mí un instrumento de tu paz,” is also available as a coloring page. The Peace Prayer is part of Finding God and Christ Our Life sessions in fourth and eighth […]
“Let me look at you!” People use this phrase when they simply want to take in another’s appearance, either because they have not seen this person for a long time or the person has gotten all dressed up for a special occasion. In either case, the desire is to look upon the beauty of another person. In our Catholic Tradition, we have a practice that enables us to “look upon” the beauty of God. We […]
We live in a world of notifications! A notification is an icon, a vibration, a ding, or some other sound that pops up on an electronic device to let us know that something new has happened or to remind us about something. Before the world of electronic devices, one notification that Catholics relied on was church bells, which would ring, not only when Mass was beginning on Sunday, but also daily at 6 a.m., noon, and 6 […]
This pandemic has taken its emotional toll on all of us. Stephanie Clouatre Davis suggests that the Ignatian Examen can help teens with anxiety. She writes, “Praying the Examen can help teens become aware that God is gently accompanying them. And knowing that they are not alone can greatly reduce any feelings of anxiety.” Read the full article, Examen for Teens with Anxiety, on our sister site, LoyolaPress.com.
I’ve shared before how I introduce my second graders to a variety of prayer experiences. However, my favorite prayer experiences with them are guided reflections. In a guided reflection, I lead the children step-by-step to imagine meeting Jesus, talking with him, and listening to him. I’m thankful that my God’s Gift books include guided reflections paired to several of our lessons. Finding God: Our Response to God’s Gifts also includes guided reflections at every grade […]
Lord, thank you for all the people who have proclaimed your name throughout the past two thousand years. Many have given their lives so that today I can encounter you. I feel happy and fulfilled by my faith, knowing that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one awaited through the ages. You are the beginning and the end. You are the Lord of Life. Help me make our encounters increasingly frequent and […]
Lord, many people have spoken to me about you. I want to know you. I have many things in my life preventing me from seeing you, and many things not in keeping with your teachings separating me from you. They are obstacles on my way to you. I have chosen a lukewarm faith: a Christianity that is comfortable and complacent. I want to overcome these obstacles so that I may know you. I know that […]