Who Can I Trust?

10/22/2013 Comments (38)

About a decade before I converted to Catholicism, I was struggling with aridity. Former protestants can attest to the fact that there is little help in protestantism for this or any other significant spiritual malady. So, I began searching, and I stumbled across a priest who had written on the topic. This priest provided me with the wisdom I needed — wisdom the Holy Spirit used to not only help me get past that particular challenge, but also to deepen my understanding of how the Lord works in and through aridity to further our union with him.

After becoming Catholic, I discovered that this author was condemned by the inquisition, and appropriately so, for the heresy of Quietism. That...READ MORE

Filed under heresy, teilhard chardin, truth

Longing for the Face of God - Navigating the Interior Life - Part IV of IV

10/17/2013 Comments (11)

In our first post of this series we covered an introduction to the concept of the three ways of the interior life. In part II and part III we covered the first and second of the three ways. In this post we will finalize our exploration of the ways. Before we jump into this final post and close out this series, I want to provide one last opportunity for you to join an online interactive webinar on this topic that I will provide on the evening of November 1st. To learn more and to REGISTER, click HERE.

Unitive Way (Spiritual Adulthood):

The principle characteristic of this phase is a simple and constant awareness of God’s presence, a near constant state of communion with Him, and...READ MORE

Filed under navigating the interior life, prayer, spiritual progress, spirituality, three ways

Longing for the Face of God - Navigating the Interior Life – Part III of IV

10/14/2013 Comments (6)

In our first post of this series we covered an introduction to the concept of the three ways of the interior life. In part II we covered the first of the three ways. In this post we will continue to focus on a summary of the second phase, the Illuminative way. If you have not yet read the previous posts, you might want to; this post is not likely to be well understood without context. For easy reference and orientation I have again provided the illustration that compares the human to spiritual development lifecycle here:

The Illuminative Way (Spiritual Adolescence):

The soul in this phase is characterized by purposeful and consistent growth in prayer, virtue, love of neighbor, a...READ MORE

Filed under navigating the interior life, prayer, spiritual progress, spirituality, three ways of the interior life

Longing for the Face of God - Navigating the Interior Life – Part II of IV

10/09/2013 Comments (13)

In our last post we introduced the concept of the three ways. In this post and those following we will explore general descriptions of each phase with help from a classic in Catholic spiritual literature, the Soul of the Apostolate by Dom Chautard. I have provided the illustration again here for easy reference.

Purgative Way (Spiritual Childhood):

Our entry into this first phase of the interior life begins with the most basic movements to pursue God through a meaningful spiritual life. The nascent motivations that bring us to this point are often rooted in fear and duty rather than love and devotion. Even though imperfect, these motivations are appropriate for this phase and...READ MORE

Filed under illuminative, navigating the interior life, prayer, purgative, spiritual progress, spirituality, three ways, unitive

Longing for the Face of God - Navigating the Interior Life – Part I of IV

10/07/2013 Comments (19)

As the Leadership Conference of Women Religious continues to demonstrate that they are without mooring in the heart of Christ and the Church, it is important to continue to reorient ourselves to the timeless teachings of the one true faith. While they seek a cosmic evolutionary theology rooted in the incongruous musings of a questionable paleontologist (Pierre Teilhard de Chardin) and a New Age styled spiritual relativism, those who desire an authentic relationship with God and neighbor continue to be drawn again to the dynamic reality of authentic Catholic spirituality – the faith of the saints.

Our faith reassures us that can know God in a personal and intimate way. His incarnation...READ MORE

Filed under navigating the interior life, prayer, spiritual progress, spirituality

The Devil’s War on Silence

10/01/2013 Comments (73)

There are key strategies of indirect attack that the enemy of our souls uses to significantly disrupt our spiritual progress. One is the corruption of human sexuality. As the analogy of holy spousal love is one of the most effective in understanding divine intimacy, the enemy desires to corrupt human sexuality in order to further obscure what it means to understand the possibilities of union with God. 

Similarly, there is another indirect attack that wreaks havoc on the soul’s ability grow in intimacy with God — noise. In our culture, noise is everywhere. Day after day, our peace is invaded by television screens at gas pumps screaming ads and programming at us, music in stores, and...READ MORE

Filed under catholic, prayer, spiritual warfare

Pope Francis’ Central Message

09/26/2013 Comments (42)

One reason that Pope Francis rattles the cages of many faithful Catholics is that the emphasis of his message is prying at our disordered attachments. It is not that he is seeking to strip us of our commitments to critical social causes like the abolition of abortion or pornography, but that he wants us to move these important things to their proper place.

To illustrate this, we can imagine a target with concentric circles and a center bull’s-eye.  The bull’s-eye would contain the single most important thing, and each ring out from the center would reflect things that are in degrees of descending importance.

So, what would be in the center? Before we answer this seemingly obvious...READ MORE

Filed under francis, gospel, moral majority, politics, pope francis

The Discernment of Pope Francis

Pope Francis and St. Ignatius

09/20/2013 Comments (15)

In Pope Francis recent interview with America magazine he frequently references “discernment.” Though many are aware of what he means by this, those who have never been exposed to Ignatian spirituality might need a little more information.

Here are a few of the ways he illustrated or used the idea of “discernment” in this interview:

“He also speaks about the moment during the conclave when he began to realize that he might be elected pope. At lunch on Wednesday, March 13, he felt a deep and inexplicable inner peace and comfort come over him, he said, along with a great darkness. And those feelings accompanied him until his election later that day.”

Question: What element of...READ MORE

Filed under discernment, discernment of spirits, ignatian spirituality, ignatius, pope, pope francis, prayer

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About Dan Burke

Dan Burke
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Dan Burke is an award winning author, speaker, regular voice on Register Radio, the Executive Director of the National Catholic Register and founder of the Avila Institute for Spiritual Formation. Dan has appeared on EWTN's Journey Home program, blogs on the spiritual life over at Roman Catholic Spiritual Direction and his latest book, Navigating the Interior Life - Spiritual Direction and the Journey to God is available through EWTN's Religious Catalogue. Dan's journey began in Judaism, matured into a living relationship with Christ as a Protestant, and after fifteen years of exploration has found his home in the Catholic Church.