WHY SHOULD ONE MEDITATE?
It’s very difficult to determine what exactly makes a person want to meditate. We discover the “why” only after we begin to meditate.
First, as Christians our limited minds cannot grasp the infinity of God. Philosophy, theology and other forms of learning only tell us things about God. They do not bring us into an EXPERIENCE of God. When we begin to abandon words, images and ideas about God in the silence of prayer, we come to a deeper sense and a deeper love of God.
In stillness, that quiet space, we come into the life of the Spirit, where we are transformed. Even Christ and the apostles became caught up in the activity and business at times (Mark 6:31). We need to withdraw each day from excessive noise and activity and find God in the solitary place in our own heart! We become disposed to God in silence.As Saint Augustine says,
“OUR HEARTS ARE RESTLESS UNTIL THEY REST IN YOU!”
We are losing the contemplative dimension of our lives, and we are paying a terrible price. Noise is drowning out the voice of God. That is why we come to meditation: to experience the presence of God.
Secondly, if we meditate, we become conscious of the “fruits of the spirit,“ as Saint Paul calls them........love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-24).
Thirdly, we join others on the common path. Spiritual writers tell us that “meditation then is the part of the universal spiritual culture of all humankind” (Ken Wilber).
Meditation is common to Hindus, Christians, Buddhists, Taoists and Sufis in Islam. Despite our different beliefs, and while our doctrinal differences seem to be great, the one practice that unites us, that brings us together is this path of meditation, of the inner silence of prayer.
MONTHLY MOVIES WITH MEANING
LENTEN MOVIES WITH MEANING
March 19 (Tues.) 6:40PM
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
The parish “Adult Spirituality/Meditation” program presents a VERY thought provoking film during Lent entitled, THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING, MISSOURI. This is not a movie for the faint of heart, as the language and theme of this R-rated film might be offensive to some adults. However, it is a movie that will enrich your Lent in that it has the capacity to demonstrate forgiveness and transformation (two themes of the Lenten season) In the midst of a story that simultaneously brings out the worst and best of human nature, the most despicable and unsympathetic characters in the movie offer on unmistakably tender message of forgiveness. This movie represents the triumph of mercy over hatred.
This movie is about a bereaved mother who has had it with the failure of the local police department to find the person responsible for raping and murdering her daughter. She rents three billboards on a road leading out of Ebbing, Missouri and pays to have them emblazoned with black lettering on a red background: (1) RAPED WHILE DYING, (2) AND STILL NO ARRESTS? (3) HOW COME SHERIFF WILLOUGHBY?
PLEASE BE WARNED!!! This is not a lighthearted movie where everyone ends up living happily ever after. This movie struggles with the powerful themes of forgiveness and revenge, life and death, damnation and redemption.
Come and see how viewing “movies with meaning” can be the occasion of a Divine Encounter, a moment of grace in our own lives. Especially during this season of Lent!
After the film we will be able to discuss a Catholic understanding of redemption, damnation, how people (yes, you!) see the world through different theological lenses (what does theology mean?), about good and evil, moral and immoral, sin and punishment and so many other things as portrayed through the very interestingcharacters in this film.
- The Searchers
- All Saints
- Joyeux Noël (Merry Christmas)
- Into Great Silence
- Song of Bernadette
SPIRITUAL BOOK OF THE MONTH CLUB!
LENTEN BOOK OF THE MONTH
The parish adult spirituality/meditation program will be reading for our Lenten book of the month during Lent,
The title of the book, Girl, Arise, is from the word, TALITHA - an uncommon feminine name meaning “little girl” in Aramaic, given in reference to the Biblical story in the Gospel of Mark in which Jesus Christ was said to have resurrected a dead child with the words "Talitha cumi" or "Talitha kum" or "Talitha koum," meaning "Little girl, I say to you, arise!"
The author of this book, Claire Swinarski, believes it is possible to be both a Catholic and a feminist. She reconciles these two identities by demonstrating the strength and abilities women have to share with the Body of Christ. She points out that while both “feminism” and “Catholicism” can mean different things to different people, those who are Catholic feminists desire to make the world a better, more equitable place. And she shows that by treating women with dignity equal to that of men, by calling them his friends and teaching them, Jesus acted as a feminist as well.
The author is an ARDENT PRO-LIFE woman, knowing modern feminism goes too far, and explores what it means to serve others rather than focus on our own needs first.
She explores the stories of holy women, including Vashti in the book of Esther, Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, Joan of Arc, Mary Magdalene and the Blessed Virgin Mary - to show how their faith influenced their actions, even when these actions went against traditional norms and roles of women.
You will be empowered, as a man or woman (This book is not only for men!), during this Lenten season to embrace your God-given abilities and follow in the footsteps of women who have gone before you in faith announcing Christ, believing in His promises, and being faithful in an ever-changing world.