Creator Mundi features blog posts with inspirational ideas and religious information.
While traveling in Germany and Holland I was fascinated by other people’s lives and their ways of being in the world. I want to share with you three observations that speak to the generosity of the heart.
First, in Holland, I needed the assistance of a dentist. It was almost 6 pm when my family called a local dentist in this neighboring little Dutch town. The dentist invited me to arrive close to 7:30 pm. In a most friendly manner, she repaired my tooth and asked for Euro 23.00 ($25.30).
Second, in Munich, I visited my childhood friend, Ursula, who is now suffering from Alzheimer’s. We spent the day together. That evening while sitting across from her at dinner, she turned to her husband and said she planned to call me tomorrow since she had not seen or spoken to me for the longest time. Her husband pointed out that I was sitting across from her. I realized my visit was meaningful for her only at the moment rather than as a memory we both could share.
Last, Ursula’s son Daniel, a physician, was taking a leave of absence, interrupting his professional commitments and opportunities so he, his wife and their daughter could tend to the needs of his aging parents. They seemed to be the happiest people on earth. I was reminded of the saying: “Never let a hardship be lost.”
So much more to share …
Many folks are walking the Camino. Did you know there is also a Hildegard of Bingen Pilgrimage by foot? It is a journey of 85 miles through meadows and hills.
We were reminded of Thomas Merton’s SEVEN STOREY MOUNTAIN
Massimo Faggioli, PhD
If it weren’t being used by the pope, “Pontifex”— Latin for “bridge builder”— would be an apt Twitter handle for church historian and professor Massimo Faggioli. The Italian-born theologian and Vatican II expert helps the different worlds of European and American Catholicism understand each other.
After years of study at the universities of Bologna and Turin, research in the Vatican archives, and teaching in other countries, Dr. Faggioli came to the United States during the 2008 presidential campaign. He was promptly tapped to write articles for European audiences, explaining the religious aspects of US politics, and for American audiences, explaining the qualities unique to Catholicism in this country. That task continues.
“Having had a more universal experience of Catholicism, I try to cast light on ideas that are distinctly American, some of which may be worth questioning,” Dr. Faggioli says.
The 2013 election of Pope Francis catapulted Dr. Faggioli, then a faculty member at the University of St. Thomas, back onto the international stage. He provided expert commentary for respected US and European media outlets, and has continued to do so since coming to Villanova in 2016.
In addition to bringing his European perspective to the classroom, Dr. Faggioli draws upon it as he writes what will be a trilogy of books on Francis’ papacy. Unlike many scholars in the US, he “follows what the pope says and does directly from Vatican sources, without having to rely on translations. It’s fascinating.”
SR. Ilia Delio, OSF, PhD
With doctoral degrees in Pharmacology and Theology, Sister Ilia Delio is eminently qualified not only to speak authoritatively about two distinct fields but also to show that, contrary to popular opinion, science and religion can work together. Since fall 2015, she has pursued this calling as the Josephine C. Connelly Endowed Chair in Christian Theology at Villanova.
Sister Ilia has deep roots in both fields. The Newark, N.J., native had been researching a drug for diabetic neuropathy when she decided to enter the Sisters of St. Francis. The community sent her to Fordham University, where she earned her second doctoral degree, this one in Historical Theology. The convergence of her interests in cells and souls transformed her. “I was like a fish who had finally found water.”
In her various posts at prestigious institutions, most recently, Georgetown University, Sister Ilia has developed new ways of understanding how God is present and active in an evolving, dynamic universe. Her awardwinning books go beyond academia to show people how they can “reclaim a living God for a living world of change and complexity.”
More than anything, “Avengers: Endgame” is about the redemptive power of human imperfection
We have just received a new bronze plaque quoting Richard Niebuhr’s advise:
GOD, GRANT ME THE SERENITY
TO ACCEPT THE THINGS I CANNOT CHANGE,
COURAGE TO CHANGE THE THINGS I CAN,
AND THE WISDOM TO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE.
Image to follow soon…
Until you are ready to make every day sacred you will probably miss the Easter moments. https://mythguidedlife.org/p/cr7C
We though many are one body in Christ.
Love bears it out even to the edge of doom.
Early in the morning, on the first day of the week, while it was still dark…
Mary stooped to peer inside…
…the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first…He saw and believed.
John 23: 3-4
LET US SING A NEW SONG, not with our lips but with our lives..
We welcome this Papal document to accompany us on our Christian pilgrimage…
Caring becomes my way of thanking for what I have received;
I thank by caring all the more for others and the conditions of their existence.
~~ Milton Mayeroff
|Until 4-10-2019 (five Wednesdays)||5-Week Retreat: The Lord Goes to His Suffering for My Sins||Ignatian Spirituality Program Denver||https://ignatianspiritualitydenver.org/retreats/calendar/|
|Until 4-20-2019||Collaboration Quilt Exhibit||Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum, Golden||https://www.denver.org/listing/rocky-mountain-quilt-museum/3832/|
|Until 5-26-2019||Jordan Casteel: Returning the Gaze||Denver Art Museum||https://denverartmuseum.org/exhibitions/jordan-casteel-returning-gaze|
|3-19-2019 for 7 weeks on Tuesdays||Hebrew Experience Class Part III||Assumption Parish, 2361E, 78th Ave, Denver||https://www.assumptiondenver.org/the-hebrew-experience|
|3-30-2019||2019 Annual Conference featuring Martin Laird||Contemplative Outreach of Colorado||http://www.contemplativeoutreach-co.org/classes/other-offerings/78-classes/328-twenty-sixth-annual-conference|
|4-18 to 4-21-2019||Easter Triduum Retreat||Sacred Heart Jesuit Retreat House, Sedalia||https://www.sacredheartretreat.org/silent-weekend-retreats.html|
|4-26 to 4-28-2019||Black Catholic Annual Retreat||Office of Black Catholic Ministry of the Denver Archdiocese; held at Sacred Heart Jesuit Retreat House, Sedalia||http://www.sacredheartretreat.org/silent-weekend-retreats.html|
|4-27-2019||Catholic Women’s Conference of Denver||CU South Denver Event Center||http://denvercatholicconference.com/women/|
|5-2 to 5-5-2019||Spring Intensive Retreat||Contemplative Outreach of Colorado, at Sacred Heart Jesuit Retreat House in Sedalia||http://www.contemplativeoutreach-co.org/retreats/spring-weekend-intensive-retreat|
|5-5 to 8-25-2019||Serious Play: Design in Midcentury America||Denver Art Museum||https://denverartmuseum.org/exhibitions/serious-play|
|5-9-2019||R.E.A.D. Club (James Cone’s “The Cross and the Lynching Tree”)||Benet Hill Monastery||http://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/event?oeidk=a07eftxofmqefe29f9a&llr=446slgdab|
|5-10 to 5-12-2019||John Philip Newell presentations||St. John’s Episcopal Church, Boulder||https://heartbeatjourney.org/locations/st-johns-episcopal-boulder-colorado-usa/|
|5-12 to 11-17-2019||Eyes on Jonathan Saiz||Denver Art Museum||https://denverartmuseum.org/exhibitions/eyes-jonathan-saiz|
|5-14- to 5-16-2019||John Philip Newell, School of Celtic Consciousness||Shambala Mountain Center in Red Feather Lakes, CO||https://heartbeatjourney.org/events/colorado-school-of-celtic-consciousness-shambhala-year-one/|
|5-17 to 5-19-2019||John Philip Newell, School of Celtic Consciousness||First United Methodist Church, Colorado Springs||https://heartbeatjourney.org/events/colorado-school-of-celtic-consciousness-colorado-springs-year-i/|
|5-21 to 5-23-2019||John Philip Newell||Casa del Sol, Ghost Ranch, Abiquiu, New Mexico||https://www.ghostranch.org/retreat/listening-for-the-heartbeat-of-god-g190514/|
|6-2-2019 to 5-3-2020||The Light Show||Denver Art Museum||https://denverartmuseum.org/exhibitions/light-show|
|6-20 to 8-4-2019||Bravo Vail Music Festival||Vail||https://www.bravovail.org/|
|10/21/2019 to 2/2/2020||Claude Monet: The Truth of Nature||Denver Art Museum||https://denverartmuseum.org/exhibitions/claude-monet|
We all have “stuff.” Don’t you? Are you cleaning out? Cleaning up? Gratitude enters into that, too! Here is Marie Kondo’s insight …:
Have gratitude for the things you’re discarding. By giving gratitude, you’re giving closure to the relationship with that object, and by doing so, it becomes a lot easier to let go.
~~ Marie Kondo
How about letting go of 20 items you no longer need and replace them with just one – yes, one!:
Gratitude as Lenten Practice
I find that the practice of Gratitude helps me to be more fully present, and much more appreciative of all of the abundance in my life. I’ve recently learned that gratitude is associated with high levels of vitality, optimism and life satisfaction. Gratitude increases physical and mental well being, which in turn increases energy levels.
Here’s a quick and easy gratitude practice: Think of the letters www and ask What Went Well? Challenge yourself to do it daily and increase your list of things that are going well – for example, start by thinking of 3 things and writing them down in your journal. Increase your numbers each day so that you’re soon reflecting on over a dozen things that are going well in your life and in the world.
~ From Beth Blissman, for Loretto at the UN (2018 Daily Lenten Reflections from the Loretto Community’s Mission Activities Team)
The Spiritual Work of Gratitude
(Henri J. Nouwen)
To be grateful for the good things that happen in our lives is easy, but to be grateful for all of our lives—the good as well as the bad, the moments of joy as well as the moments of sorrow, the successes as well as the failures, the rewards as well as the rejections—that requires hard spiritual work. Still, we are only truly grateful people when we can say thank you to all that has brought us to the present moment. As long as we keep dividing our lives between events and people we would like to remember and those we would rather forget, we cannot claim the fullness of our beings as a gift of God to be grateful for.
Let’s not be afraid to look at everything that has brought us to where we are now and trust that we will soon see in it the guiding hand of a loving God.
Teach Me to Listen
Teach me to listen, O God,
to those nearest me, my family, my friends, my co-workers.
Help me to be aware that no matter what words I hear,
the message is, “Accept the person I am. Listen to me.”
Teach me to listen, my caring God,
to those far from me –
the whisper of the hopeless,
the plea of the forgotten,
the cry of the anguished.
Teach me to listen, O God my Mother, to myself.
Help me to be less afraid to trust the voice inside –
in the deepest part of me.
Teach me to listen, Holy Spirit,
for your voice –
in busyness and in boredom,
in certainty and doubt,
in noise and in silence.
Teach me, Lord, to listen.
~~Leo Veltri, SJ
I want to see you.
Know your voice.
Recognize you when you
first come ’round the corner.
Sense your scent when I come
into a room you’ve just left.
Know the lift of your heel,
the glide of your foot.
Become familiar with the way
you purse your lips
then let them part,
just the slightest bit,
when I lean in to your space
and kiss you.
I want to know the joy
of how you whisper
If love is the soul of Christian existence, it must be at the heart of every other Christian virtue. Thus, for example, justice without love is legalism; faith without love is ideology; hope without love is self-centeredness; forgiveness without love is self-abasement; fortitude without love is recklessness; generosity without love is extravagance; care without love is mere duty; fidelity without love is servitude. Every virtue is an expression of love. No virtue is really a virtue unless it is permeated, or informed, by love.
~~Richard Rohr, OFM
Good Samaritan Contemporary Icon (framed reverse oil painting on glass)
Each of us spins repeatedly from blindness to radiance,
from dividedness to wholeness,
and it is our impulse to stay in touch with all that is alive
that keeps us from staying lost.
It is the impulse to be intimate.
To live with things
and not in front of them,
to no longer watch,
but to realize that we are part of everything we see –
this is the love
that keeps moving us back into wholeness
when we are divided.
To love by admitting our connection to everything
is how we stay well.
Allowing the current of another’s inwardness
to connect with our own
is the beginning of both
intimacy and enlightenment.
~~Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening (adapted excerpts)
- Close your eyes and be still until you sense the presence of the things about you.
- Breathe softly and feel the current of their silence.
- Breathe evenly and open your heart to all that you sense.
With All My Love Figurine