So Teresa of Avila & Martin Luther walk into a bar….

Two years ago this month, I spent a glorious five days at my favorite Benedictine monastery learning more about a 16th-century Carmelite nun who reformed much of the monastic community of her day by training the women—and then many of the men—in prayer. Not the verbal kind of prayer but the practice of meditation, contemplation,Continue reading “So Teresa of Avila & Martin Luther walk into a bar….”

This Lent I’m giving up Lent

When I first came to faith I was excited to make all the spiritual practices my own. Every year, I would choose something to forgo. At first I gave up the obvious things like wine or sweets, and experienced the feeling of my 6-week successes as transcendence. In retrospect, my delight was probably more akinContinue reading “This Lent I’m giving up Lent”

Man Turned in on Himself, Excerpt 15

Vocation Vocation, from the Latin vocatio, can mean several things: “the proclamation of the gospel, through which human beings are called to be children of God,” the call to the divine office of teaching and preaching, and the work each one of us is called to do in our daily lives. Luther emphasizes this thirdContinue reading “Man Turned in on Himself, Excerpt 15”

Man Turned in on Himself, excerpt 8

Martin Luther, who struggled mightily with anxiety, believed that one cannot deal with life’s daily fears without first making peace with life’s ultimate fear—death. If Luther is right, then America is not getting any closer to the target. “In today’s narcissistic culture, man seeks not to inflict his own certainties on others but to findContinue reading “Man Turned in on Himself, excerpt 8”