The Penitent Magdalene and True Conversion of Heart 4

By Fr Jason Smith

I have found no better representation of conversion and penance in art than The Penitent Magdalene, by George de la Tour. Though simple, it expresses the essential elements behind every conversion, and we can find in it powerful lessons to apply to our own life. Let’s take a closer look.

The Penitent Magdalen, George de la Tour

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Monk Mode, Spending More Time with God in Lent 2

By Br Eric Wandrey
About seven miles off western coast of Ireland, a lonely island looms out of the sea, the tip of a massive oceanic mountain. 54 acres and 715 feet high, Skellig Michael is home only to a colony of Northern Gannets, but there was a time when this remote outcropping hosted more than seabirds. For over 600 years, it was home to Irish monks who sought complete solitude and close communion with God. More…

2 Things Wishing on a 4-Leaf Clover Won’t Change 6

Make a wish and say a prayer!

Make a wish and say a prayer!

Today there are only 2 types of people: those who claim to be Irish, and those who actually are.

Either way, everyone is invited to be Christian, especially those who already are. Today, Christians should try to be exceptionally Christian (as always). The way to do this is to remember a couple of things that St Patrick’s Day doesn’t change, and one thing that it does change.  More…

Mountaintop Moments 3

Remember the moment!

Remember the moment!

In the Bible, mountaintops are privileged places for encountering God, for having life-changing experiences of God. And so it is no mere coincidence that Jesus brought his disciples up the mountain to see his transfiguration.

We have all had mountaintop experiences, times or moments when we felt God’s presence almost palpably, and we knew with absolute certainty that he was watching over us and guiding us. More…

Trouble Stumbling with Your Lenten Resolution? Take Courage! 1

First, remember what Lent is all about

First, remember what Lent is all about

If you are having trouble with your Lenten resolution, it probably means you did not pick something too easy, and that’s already a good sign.

Of course, it can also reveal a number of other things about you and that too is a good thing, if you think about it, and I mean iffff you really do think about it.  More…

The 3 Miracles of Jonah 6

There is someone far greater than Jonah here

“Father, if you are willing, take this cup away from me; still, not my will but yours be done.”

“Father, if you are willing, take this cup away from me; still, not my will but yours be done.”

Jesus said to his detractors:

This generation is an evil generation; it seeks a sign, but no sign will be given it, except the sign of Jonah. More…

The Forgotten Sign, Because Humility Just Isn’t on Our Agenda 12

Am I my brother's keeper?

Am I my brother’s keeper?

When I give tours at the Metropolitan Art Museum in New York, I like to stop by this paining and not say a word. Eventually, someone asks, “What’s this painting about?”

Most people do not see what’s going at first or even second glance. Surprisingly, some people never see it until you tell them the title of the painting, and even then, some still don’t see what is going on.  More…

The Non-Negotiable Nature of the Cross in Christian Life 18

“The Cross marks out the militant dimension of our existence. With the cross, it is impossible to negotiate. The cross is either embraced or rejected. If we embrace the cross, then by that very decision, we lose our life. We leave it in the hands of God. If we decide to reject it, our lives are left in our own hands, encased in the petty confines of our short horizons More…

Fasting on Fish 13

Fr Jason Smith

Fasting means going on a disciplined diet. And like all real diets it should be hard.

The purpose is to find out who is in charge: You or your stomach. The battle between the two tempers the will, heightens spiritual sensitivity, and leads us to find strength in God through prayer. More…