A Reflection for the 5th Sunday of Lent

Do you believe this?

The Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you


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    Becoming light for each other – a reflection on today’s Gospel

Becoming light for each other – a reflection on today’s Gospel

While praying my Lectio Divina for the 5th
Sunday of Ordinary Time the words that struck me were ‘Your light will shine
like the dawn and your wound quickly healed over’.

The word ‘Light’ is repeated in the
first reading, the psalm and the Gospel. Elsewhere, in St John’s Gospel, Jesus
tells us ‘I am the light of the world.’ Turning to us, his disciples, He
reminds us in today’s Gospel we too are the ‘light of the world.’

Recently, a meeting with a young
couple who were clearly letting their light shine for all to see made a
deep impression on me. They were ex-heroin addicts who were very happy to be
alive and to be together. Even though at the time I was coping with my own
darkness, I seemed to have brightened up their day – they asked me to pray with
them. They told me part of their touching story and how they came from sheer
darkness to […]

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    The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord: “Consecrate them in the Truth” – a Reflection on our Vocation

The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord: “Consecrate them in the Truth” – a Reflection on our Vocation

Consecrate them in the truth

Your word is truth.

Throughout the
centuries the Holy Spirit has raised up many different forms of consecrated
life – which can be compared to a plant, with many branches, which sinks its
roots into the Gospel and brings forth abundant fruit in every season of the
Church’s life. (cf VC 5).

When reflecting on our vocation as Dominican nuns and how we try to live the motto of our Order: TRUTH, I began to understand our consecration as being set apart for Truth.  This truth is not an abstraction or even some dogma of the Church – rather it is the Person of Christ, God-with-us, to whom we give ourselves. He is the living Word of God, to which every other word refers.  On the eve of His death He prayed: “Consecrate them in the truth” – i.e.  make us one with Christ, bind us to Christ, draw us into […]

The Holy Family

The icon is not a work of the imagination
in which the artist tries to drag the onlooker inside an ideal family, but a
theological teaching that exposes something of the Truth revealed in Jesus
Christ. We do not enter into the icon, it is a sacred space delimitated by a
red line all around it. It is the people, represented inside that space, that come
to us. “The Kingdom of God is at hand”

The Holy Family is a real human family and,
as such, a model for all families of the earth. Nevertheless, it is more than
that, and its example is leading us towards and introducing us in the mystery
of the Trinity.

As regards the model, we must say that there is no prototype of the Holy
Family as such in the strict Byzantine tradition. Nonetheless, this icon,
created for St Peter’s parish in Drogheda, follows as faithfully as possible
the ancient canons. The figure arrangement takes great […]

Reflection: My experience of praying the Rosary

Disposed from childhood to praying the
Rosary, it has grown with me over the years or perhaps it would be more true to
say I’ve grown with it. A prayer for all seasons of life, it has been my
mainstay. I think of the structure of the rosary, the saying of the beads as a
kind of enclosure, creating and protecting a sacred space, a shelter, within
which Mary and I meet with Jesus on a daily basis and she shows unto me the
blessed fruit of her womb, JESUS. This is a place where our friendship has
developed, has deepened, as I have come to understand the constancy of these
two friends of mine and the depth of God’s love revealed to me through the
life, death and resurrection of Jesus.

The simple act of taking up the beads, by virtue of habit, now  speaks to my mind, heart and body  at a level below consciousness, perhaps somewhat […]

Reflection: What the Rosary means to me

St John Paul II called the rosary his favourite prayer.  While the Mass is my favourite prayer,
the rosary is not far behind in my preference. 
If for any reason on a rare occasion I fail to say the rosary, then I
cannot sleep until I say it in full.

rosary is mostly centred on Jesus and Mary so for that reason, it is very
precious to me:  Jesus who is Alpha and
Omega, and Mary who is His Mother.  In
the company of these two very important people, I am always happy.

mystery reveals some aspect of the life of Jesus or Mary.  In this prayer, I find my joy for Jesus
because one of us – like us in all but sin – my solace, my strength, my
comfort, my encouragement, above all my hope in a future of eternal life.  As I pray the rosary, I find I can draw from
all the various mysteries the grace […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 8

would like to reflect a little on St Dominic’s single-mindedness in his pursuit
of holiness and his mission of preaching.

a young man Dominic studied the liberal arts at a thriving arts faculty in
Palencia – no doubt, a brilliant future awaited him!  However, Bl Jordan tells us, very graphically,
that after a short while, Dominic “fled to the study of theology as if afraid
to waste his limited time on less fruitful study.”  We might ask ourselves if he had struggled
with himself to give up the study of arts? – for he had a keen intellect and
could have persuaded himself that this could be helpful for his own future
human and spiritual development.  But one
senses through the pages of the Libellus
that something deeper was drawing him or rather Someone who demanded that he
leave all aside, even good things and focus all his attention on the ‘one thing
necessary.’  Bl Jordan describes
Dominic’s “eagerness to imbibe the […]

Novena to St. Dominic – Day 7

continue our Novena in honour of St Dominic

saint resembles Christ in some way. This was particularly clear with Dominic
who followed Jesus in everything – in his prayer, works and miracles. 

his Master, Dominic used to spend the nights in prayer to God; he would fall
asleep with his head on the altar step when he was too exhausted to continue.
St Dominic spent his life preaching the Gospel and being constantly concerned
for the salvation of the human race.

In today’s Gospel passage the gestures of Jesus as
he multiplies the loaves and fishes “taking (the loaves)”, “blessing”,
“breaking” “giving” echoes the Eucharistic narrative. The disciples believed
that their only option was to send the crowd away and to find food elsewhere.
They focussed on what they lacked. But Jesus had a different perspective. His
Faith was in God’s power to look after the spiritual and material welfare of
the people gathered around him.  As we share
in our daily […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 6

St. Dominic’s Compassion

As we continue our Novena to St Dominic, I would like to reflect on St. Dominic’s compassion for others. On his Feast Day, this Thursday, we will sing the Antiphon:

“Dominic had compassion on his neighbours and ardently desired their salvation.”

Dominic’s compassion was not passive, not accepting
and encouraging the other in whatever it is they want to do, which seems to be
the modern understanding of compassion. His compassion required that he act for
the good of the other, even, or perhaps especially, when that meant telling
them they were doing wrong. It was out of this compassion that he established
his Order (for preaching and the salvation of souls) to bring back to God those
who had been led astray by the false, dark vision of God and the world
presented by the Albigensians (who taught, among other things, that the
material world, including human bodies, was evil, created by an evil spirit). […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 5

O Wonderful Hope!  

The lands of sunrise and sunsetYou fill with your joy. (Ps64)

I hope you may hear sometimes how beautifully the birds are singing at early morning. Their singing does not create the dawn, but they are singing because the sun has risen.

At sunset when our world is wrapped in darkness, St Dominic’s daughters and sons are also singing: “O Spem miram” (O Wonderful Hope).

What they do hope

We sing because CHRIST

 Like Mary Magdalena we hope to meet our Risen
Lord face to face, and ‘to know the power of his resurrection’.

‘To see God’
really means to share in his life, to enjoy his plenitude, to penetrate into
the depth of his life, to be with him, to live in his presence.

Similarly the expression ‘to know’ in biblical usage does not mean a purely intellectual process, but the union of two beings in love. We read in Genesis ‘Now Adam […]