"Let him desire and seek nothing except the greater praise and glory of God our Lord as the aim of all he does. For every one must keep in mind that in all that concerns the spiritual life his progress will be in proportion to his surrender of self-love and of his own will and interests."
Today we are reminded of God’s commandments. They begin with a warning, “I, the LORD, am your God…you shall not have other gods beside me.”
They include the importance of honoring parents and holding the seventh day, the sabbath, holy; a day of rest to revel in the goodness of all God has bestowed on the world. In addition, the commandments admonish us not to kill, steal, lie, cheat or use the Lord’s name in vain.
How does one honor Lent during a pandemic when isolation and quiet time already present challenges, when “church” takes place via computer or phone and you feel like you have been in a desert experience for months?
Today’s gospel introduces Lent with the story of Jesus going out into the desert for forty days, tempted by Satan and cared for by angels. The final line simply says, “Repent, and believe in the gospel.” This gives us an overall view of how we might approach Lent but is short on details.
Joy is elusive these days. We search a bit longer and stretch our imaginations a bit further to experience joy. Yet as Fr. Randy Roche, SJ shares in this essay, joy is there for each of us. Note his final sentence. It will bring a smile to your face . . .
It is our practice to offer commentary on the Sunday readings as they tie into the mission of service and spiritual formation embraced by Ignatians West volunteers. Today we also share the service of Mary Ann Bognar, a long-time volunteer . . .
Today we share with you a prayer composed by John Flaherty as he, like so many of us, watched the violent events unfold in our Capitol last week. John is well known for his work at Loyola Marymount University. He is Associate Director of Campus Ministry, Director of Liturgy and Music, and Director of Pastoral Liturgy and Pastoral Music Certification for the Center for Religion and Spirituality. He is also a friend and supporter of Ignatians West.
We hope this prayer is a comfort to you as we move toward Inauguration Day 2021 . .
A heartfelt thank you to everyone who answered the invitation to support our work over these past few weeks. We appreciate your faith in what we are doing to bring hope and dignity to individuals and families living on the margins and struggling from the effects of poverty.
Today we hear once again the story of the angel Gabriel appearing to Mary with startling news, disturbing news no doubt, for a young girl. Yet, Mary’s response was straightforward, “May it be done to me according to your word.” There was no questioning, no bargaining, just acceptance.
I have spent the past few days witnessing the comfort God calls us to offer others watching nurses move quickly and quietly up and down the corridors
of the local hospital where my father is a patient. The efficiency and calmness with which they attend to the sick, many of them elderly, is surely a response to God’s call. That the nurses are paid for their service renders what they do a job, but the attitude they bring to the job elevates it to a higher level. I am moved by their patience, willingness to smile and insert humor into difficult circumstances and their overall kindness to those who are ill and their worried family members.
On this day of national gratitude the most frequently asked question will be, “For what are you grateful?” As families gather, in person around the table or the computer or phone screen via Zoom, the answers will vary according to age and circumstance. Answers will bring smiles, laughter and tears.
On behalf of our board of directors, staff and volunteers, we offer you heartfelt gratitude for supporting our work. Despite changes caused by the pandemic volunteers continue to reach out to others in need.
Today, Fr. Randy Roche, SJ shares his thoughts on Thanksgiving 2020 .