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31 Aug 2016 |
I first heard of loneliness from the Dutch Catholic priest Henri Nouwen - in his books. Since then I have read many other people, priests, single and divorced people writing and talking about loneliness. People living on their own may feel particularly lonely because physically, there is no one around them. However, not everyone who is alone feels lonely, and when we are surrounded by people, we may still feel lonely. Being alone and being lonely are not synonymous.
18 Aug 2016 |
The homeless are under the bridges we walk over. They sleep in 24-hour bank foyers to get out of the rain while I get my money out. They are the ghosts of the dawn, carelessly placed like newspapers thrown on front lawns.
05 Aug 2016 |
'Just give Jesus a chance to let you know how much he loves you.' I read those words in an email from a friend at about 10pm on 17 April, 2016. The words brought immediate tears to my eyes but I did not know why. Perhaps, I was feeling sad partly because I was leaving my immediate family to go to visit my mother the next day, and my ever-present fear of flying has been exacerbated by what happened to flights MH 17 and MH 370. All I knew was that I had to suppress them, or I would wake up the next morning with swollen, puffy eyes.
27 Jul 2016 |
Although we are not fortunate enough to be able to make it to Krakow and celebrate and experience such a momentous and faith filled event as World Youth Day, we can engage in pilgrimage in our daily life and experience a closer relationship and understanding of God, writes Brendan Nicholls.
21 Jul 2016 |
Pope Francis’ encyclical on the environment has triggered in me a dormant interest in growing roses. Why roses? Perhaps you ask. Out of so many other easier-to-grow or simpler flowers? My interest in these soft-petalled blooms still baffles me since romantic is a far cry from my staid nature.
14 Jul 2016 |
Catholics don’t sing. It’s a common refrain, but I’m not sure I believe it. Catholics will belt out a ballad while in the shower, they’ll sing along in the car (except at red lights of course), heck, I’ve even witnessed the most hardened men sing rapturous odes to their footy teams after a win. Music is a natural and unique facet of human culture. It expresses a connection to a common identity that can only be truly understood from the inside. As one of my philosophy professors explained, 'nobody but an Australian can fully appreciate the nuance in the lyrics of Waltzing Matilda.'
06 Jul 2016 |
The angel of healing has come into my life in different ways. For me, looking up to different figures has been a help for me. There is one figure that stands out. She stands out with a halo of light because she, the Princess, always liked hats and they went well with her golden hair.
30 Jun 2016 |
When I was a child, one of the prayers I said was prayer to St Joseph, patron saint of a happy death. Children don’t think of death but I learnt and said whatever prayer I was taught. As I remember it, the prayer goes, ‘O great St Joseph, patron of a happy death, pray for us and obtain for us the grace that we may die a happy death, as thou didst in the arms of Jesus and Mary, that we may receive Jesus before we die.’
29 Jun 2016 |
I was a child when my grandmother died, but I remember her wake vividly, and even now when I am in a hushed room I am again peering over the edge of her coffin and noting that she had the rosary with the blue beads rather than the rosary with the black beads. This was a surprise.
18 Jun 2016 |
In our office, there is a quiet little desk in the corner that is home to piles of books, a coffee cup, and a bespectacled Jesuit called Andy Hamilton SJ. He has a wide circle of friends, many of whom share his passion for writing. When I first met him 12 years ago, I noted that when he frequented events and met with young people, he would open with the line ‘do you like writing?’, and if they answered yes, it would lead to genuine friendship wherein he would mentor and encourage them.
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