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Prayer Takes Practice: Five Ways to Improve Your Prayer Life

How much time and energy is exerted in obtaining a degree from some prestigious University?  How much blood, sweat and tears are expended to win a trophy from some sporting event? How much time and energy can even be consumed in preparing for a surprise Birthday party?   If we can expend so much time, money, emotional and physical energy for such natural pursuits,...

5 Celtic Prayers and Blessings for St. Patrick’s Day

The Celtic Christian tradition has much to offer us living in the modern world. For one, the Celtic people and their descendants possessed an intuitive awareness of God's presence in all creation---an awareness we moderns have largely lost. From the waves crashing against the craggy Irish coast to the ever-present rain and wind, everything was a sign and manifestation of...

5 Reasons to Pray the Rosary Every Day in 2017

The new year is right around the corner, and as it approaches, it is natural to look back at months past and think of resolutions that can improve our lives. While eating healthier, getting up earlier,  exercising, and similar commitments are all good and commendable, I want to recommend one resolution you will never regret: praying a daily rosary. We all...

Praying the Rosary

The post is part of the ongoing #FultonFridays series. From the earliest days, the Church asked its faithful to recite the one hundred and fifty Psalms of David. This custom still prevails among priests, who recite some of these Psalms every day. But it was not easy for anyone to memorize the one hundred and fifty Psalms. Then, too, before...

Ten Reasons to Pray the Rosary

Motivation is the key to carrying out any worthy enterprise. Great men and great women have clear goals and strong motivations. They know what they want and they have a clear plan before their eyes. CEO’s in successful companies know what they want, have goals, deadlines, and concrete steps to attain those goals. Professional athletes have a determined determination to...

St. Romuald, Baby Birds, and Divine Grace

This past week, we discovered a nest in our backyard containing three baby birds. They must have hatched very recently because they are at the stage where they are still quite ugly---no feathers, huge heads, and gaping mouths. Our two boys are absolutely delighted, and they express their excitement by running around the yards shouting, "Baby birds, baby birds!" When...

10 Ways to Grow in Prayer

Prayer is the key to salvation.  St. Augustine says that he who prays well lives well; he who lives well dies well; and to he who dies well all is well. St. Alphonsus reiterates the same principle:  “He who prays much will be saved; he who does not pray will be damned; he who prays little places in jeopardy his eternal salvation.  The same...

The Rosary: The Best Prayer for Men

Devotion to Our Lady may not seem an intuitive thing for some Catholic men. Growing up, I’d occasionally catch my father as he finished praying the Rosary early on Saturday mornings (begun in peace when the rest of us were asleep), or notice he’d left his handsome set of beads lying out on a coffee table. I had the blessing...

The Weapon for These Times: 54 Day Rosary Novena for Divine Assistance

"The rosary is the weapon for these times." - St. Padre Pio Have you read the news lately? It is seemingly nothing but terrorism, beheadings, mass murders, suicide, sexual anarchy, persecution, and even blatant Satan worship. While one might argue that such things have always existed in human history, I am convinced that evil is emboldened, and that it is being unleashed...

Preparing for a Good Lent: Prayer

Today, we continue our series on how to prepare for a good Lent by focusing on the first of the three pillars: prayer. "Virtues are formed by prayer. Prayer preserves temperance. Prayer suppresses anger. Prayer prevents emotions of pride and envy. Prayer draws into the soul the Holy Spirit, and raises man to Heaven." – St. Ephrem of Syria Other...

Simplicity in Devotion

When I first converted to Catholicism, I was overwhelmed by the wealth of devotions Catholics practiced. There was devotion to the five wounds of Christ, the brown scapular, the green scapular, the Divine Mercy chaplet, devotion to the Holy Face, the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Rosary, devotion to the Sacred Heart, devotion to the seven sorrows of...

The Mighty Breastplate of St. Patrick

St. Patrick is one of the most well-known saints in Christendom, and he left an indelible stamp on the Church despite the fact that we know very little about his life. In addition to being the missionary who almost single handedly converted Ireland, and being the man who permanently ridded the Emerald Isle of snakes, St. Patrick also happens to be the author of what is perhaps the...