30 November 2009

Rambo priests! Yes!

A priest's soul should have "interior muscle" comparable to the physical strength of Rambo, which is nourished with "prayer, the interior life and true motivation," says the secretary for the Congregation for Clergy.

For the whole article, go here.

St. Andrew

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St. Andrew is a silent apostle, bringing people to Jesus. We do not hear his preaching, but we see his effective evangelizing. Jesus is more than adequate to speak for Himself. Andrew brought people to Jesus. How will you bring people to Jesus today?

29 November 2009

Beginning Again

Well, it hardly seems possible that the luxuriously lengthy Thanksgiving break is coming to an end, and the Church's year is beginning again! The Church year begins with Advent, and the academic term ends with exams. They come at the same time. We begin Advent much as we ended the liturgical year: by considering the second coming of Jesus. At the beginning we look to the end. The beginning determines the end.

I have a feeling that the students sense that the end is near. Just as Christians should look forward to the second coming of Jesus, I guess that students should look forward to exams. At least that is what my Latin teacher in high school thought. He was amused that I was excited to be exempt from my final Latin exam after four years of study of that "dead" language. He saw the final exam as my opportunity to "show my stuff." And I was passing it up. What a shame.

If truth be told, I have always kind of liked exam time. That is, of course, easy for me to say now that I don't take exams. I really liked the end of term better than the beginning. And so I like the Church's emphasis on the end times at the beginning of the year.

Exams are frightening. The end of the world is frightening. The end of life is frightening. Our times are frightening. When I was in college it was "Morning in America." There is no sense of that optimism now. And yet we begin again another year of Our Lord. I pray that it may really be that: a year of Our Lord. That would make it the best of times. Come, Lord Jesus!

23 November 2009

Many Things

Vanderbilt is on a long Thanksgiving Break.

I spent the weekend on our second Rachel's Vineyard retreat in Nashville. It was very powerful. There was tremendous healing. Spread the good news.

When I got back over to the Frassati House and reposed the Blessed Sacrament to end the Adoration that accompanied the retreat, I discovered that I was in time for Solemn Vespers and Benediction at the Cathedral for Christ the King. That is the kind of thing that a Cathedral should be doing. The choir was great.

It was strange to have a calm Sunday evening. They are usually (wonderfully) hectic and late, what with the 9 p.m. Mass and all. But last night was different (see the first line of the post). I was able to have supper with the two other priests at the Cathedral rectory and my father. We enjoyed a beautiful meal made and delivered by a good friend.

That's a recap. And it's my birthday.

18 November 2009


Here we are in the middle of things. I feel like catching a breath! I am enjoying myself more than I ever have, but I am also pulled in more directions than I can handle. The more that I am willing to lay it all down and really surrender to the will of God for me, the better it gets. I want to get on the roof of the Frassati House and shout to the young men I know: "BE A PRIEST! IT'S AWESOME." Whenever the topic of priesthood comes up, this wary look comes into the eyes of the most obvious young men. I think that the problem is not so much with themselves (although that's there) but with what they fear everyone else will think, especially their parents and other mentors. I would put my life up against anyone's for richness, meaning, relationships, and persecution (just a little bit for seasoning) to boot! Just like Jesus said. Go figure.

13 November 2009

Countdown to Thanksgiving Break!

I guess that I should be setting a better example than this, but I am really looking forward to Thanksgiving break. I am really tired! In a good way really, but I am. I guess it might have something to do with the fact that I will turn 47 over the break. When one is now more than twice as old (even of most of the graduate students!) as the people one is around most of the time, it could be a little tiring! But I am very content. The tiredness is well earned. There is so much more that I wish we had done at Vandy+Catholic so far this year, but I am amazed at what we have accomplished. I can't wait to see what God will let us do next!

10 November 2009

The Awakening Effect

I think that we are getting the hoped for fruits of Awakening: deeper conversion to the way of the Lord Jesus through the sacramental and devotional life of the Catholic Church. The devil did his best to undermine things. 11 people decided not to attend on the last day! We thought that we had been doing so well in keeping those who had signed up ready to go. The devil has to work on the front end because no one ever regrets going. So I ask you to begin praying now for Vandy Awakening VI, March 26-28. In particular, pray that those who need to go will get on the bus and go!

03 November 2009


Sorry about the extremely lame blogging lately, but here is some news:

The Vandy+Catholic Nun Run appeared in the Whitesville, Ky Passionist Nuns' Blog -- yes, there is such a blog!

Vandy Awakening V ( VAV for short) is this weekend. Pray.

New Bible studies for fraternity men and for athletes began last week.

How's that? There is so much more. I am too busy living life to write about it.