Lord, make me an instrument of your holy discomfort
Where there is privilege, let me sow equity,
Where there is violence, let me work for peace,
Where there is division, let me seek unity,
Where there is racism, let me pursue racial justice,
Where there is environmental degradation, let me care for creation,
Where there is political discord, let me seek the common good,
And where there is economic inequality, let me seek justice.
O God of Justice, grant that I may not so much seek comfort, as to welcome hard truths, To be heard, as to listen, To hold…
The Vatican confirmed on Saturday that Pope Francis is scheduled to make a trip to the medieval city of Assisi on October 3—the anniversary of St. Francis of Assisi’s death, known as the “Feast of the Transitus” in the Franciscan Orders—to sign a new encyclical letter on “the social, political and economic obligations that flow from a belief that all people are children of God and therefore brothers and sisters to one another.”
Officials announced that the document would be titled “Fratelli Tutti” in Italian, which immediately set off a social-media firestorm about its gender-exclusive construction. …
18th Sunday of Ordinary Time (Matt 14:13–21)| August 2, 2020
This reflection was first delivered at the Carmelite Monastery of Baltimore on August 1, 2020.
Anything that hints at the miraculous tends to capture the attention and imagination of true believers and skeptics alike. So it is should come as no surprise that most Christians gravitate toward what is often recounted as the miraculous in today’s Gospel narrative, generally referred to as the “feeding of the thousands” or, more to this point, “the miracle of the multiplication of loaves.” On the one hand, there is nothing inherently wrong with…
Being an American is a complicated identity.
It’s complications manifest differently depending on each American’s particular social location, personal history, and an array of other factors like gender, race, religion, and sexual orientation. But, despite narratives of patriotism spoken and sung, nothing is as simple or straightforward as an “Independence Day Parade” down main street or the singing of “God Bless America” might have some people believe.
As the Pulitzer Prize winning “1619 Project” by Nikole Hannah-Jones eloquently, and at times painfully, recounts, those Americans of African descent have always struggled with the blatant complication of American identity. …
How we imagine and talk about ourselves as creatures is extraordinarily important, particularly in this time of global climate change and ecological crisis.
As a Franciscan friar and theologian, I have a particular interest in the language we use and ways we think about ourselves as a species in relationship to the rest of the created world. I lecture regularly about theology of creation and ecospirituality, often discussing Pope Francis’s 2015 encyclical letter Laudato Si’—highlighting its importance and strengths, as well as its limitations.
In 2018 I published a scholarly book titled All God’s Creatures: A Theology of Creation, the…
I am a Franciscan friar, a Catholic priest, and a professor of theology and spirituality. And from the perspective of many—at least the many anonymous trolls on social media—I should “stick to religion” and “stay out of politics.”
But what is often missed by those who espouse such an opinion, this view that “religion” and “politics” are non-overlapping magisteria, is the unavoidable truth that religion is inherently political.
I can only speak from the perspective of a Christian—as a practitioner, minister, and scholar in and of that tradition. Christianity is inherently political for at least several reasons.
First, the central…
There are many people who are understandably upset that one of the consequences of social-distancing orders has been the temporary prohibition of gathering in groups for worship. But what such people of faith neglect to consider are the ways in which God is always already present to us and all of creation.
At least in the Christian tradition, our understanding of God’s presence is not limited to any particular physical location. It is true that we Roman Catholics, along with many of our Mainline Protestant sisters and brothers, recognize the sacramental presence of Christ in the Eucharist as a distinctive…
Back in 2009 I was asked (“told”) by my publisher that I should start a blog, which I obediently did. Throughout the aughts, book publishers were obsessed with the idea of their authors expanding their “platforms” to increase interest in both the author and the work.
And so I launched a blog titled “DatingGod.org,” which came from the title of my then-forthcoming book, Dating God: Live and Love in the Way of St. Francis.
The site became reasonably successful. At times I would post short reflections or long essays or an assortment of reviews daily, with thousands of daily views…