faith

A woman makes a gesture of quiet with her finger over her lips - Photo by Kristina Flour on Unsplash
We are surprised by Jesus’ strong insistence to Jairus that he not tell anyone about his daughter’s recovery. The miracle is surely a persuasive sign of Jesus’ power and goodness. Shouldn’t everyone who hears of it have their faith strengthened? Some people were scornful of Jesus at the time: their laughter must have been silenced by the miracle: isn’t it good to confound those who scoff at faith? The calling back to life of the little girl is a sign of Jesus’ divine authority: isn’t it...
Schnorr von Carolsfeld Bibel in Bildern
For most of us it is not easy to believe in the resurrection of Jesus: most of us are not in the premier league of beloved disciples: most of the time utter joy and bliss and absolute faith in the God who loves us eternally and unconditionally aren’t obvious to us.  As Christians we see acts of faith around us, we receive compassion and support, we pray together for the people we love; but we also witness lack of faith, resentment or even hatred towards Christians, simply because of what...
Cardinal Ravasi with the President of the IOC, Thomas Bach
As the Paralympics get underway in Rio, the Pontifical Council for Culture in the Vatican is preparing for a major conference on sport and faith. World-famous athletes, religious leaders and civil authorities are due to gather for the event entitled  Sport and Faith at the Service of Humanity, which is aimed at exploring how the Faith and Sports communities can better serve humanity.The conference between 5 and 7 October 2016 is the fruit of a preparatory commission that first met exactly...
Quote by Muhammad Ali
“People from east and west, from north and south, will come to take their places at the feast in the kingdom of God.” [Luke 13.29]When I was at College, I had a friend Peter who is a Catholic and he shared a house with a Muslim called Abdul. They were both very religious people, each in his own way but, despite their differences, they got on very well. And it wasn’t until they had been staying together about six weeks that they had a really big argument about religion. Neither...
Giving my faith a workout in the footsteps of St IgnatiusThe Camino Ignaciano is a trail first trodden  by St Ignatius in 1522, wending through the hills of northern Spain between Loyola (near the Atlantic coast) and Manresa (on the Mediterranean side).  It normally takes four weeks.  Mount Street Jesuit Centre’s young adult ministry runs week-long  pilgrimages each June over four years so young working people can do it in short stages.Bokani Tshidzu joined the...
Close up of a guitar being played - image from unsplash.com
One of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do is play guitar in church, in South America, in the dark.I always used to enjoy playing with the Cathedral choir. But what would often happen is that just as we were playing nicely along a little hymn then suddenly, with no warning, all the lights would go out and we would be plunged into the most absolute darkness. The Blackout came without warning, or prediction, apparently at the time of its own malevolent choosing. Perhaps it was just my...
A man with a torch walking alongside a cart of plague victims
God's ways are not our ways! God cannot be captured in our thoughts or pictured inside our imagination. God is so different from anything we can know or imagine that all of our concepts and language about God are always more inadequate than adequate. God can be known, but never imagined or captured in a thought, because God is infinite and our minds are finite.Infinity cannot be defined.  For example,  if we try to imagine the highest number possible,  we immediately realise...
The Pope answers questions on war, sin and free will in the new book
Letters and drawings from children from Jesuit institutions around the world – including in the UK – feature in a new book from Pope Francis, which attempts to answer his question: ‘What did God do before the world was made?’ The six to 13-year-olds, who come from five continents, wrote to the Pope, asking him questions on a wide variety of topics. Their letters and drawings were taken to Casa Santa Marta last summer by Fr Antonio Spadaro SJ, the director of La Civilta Cattolica, and 31 of them...
Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Just once in a while, usually in that really quiet period after Mass when nearly all of the people have gone, I will notice out of the corner of my eye a young woman or a young man hanging about suspiciously near the poor box by the candle-stand. And as I clear up after Mass, they will continue to hang around, loitering with what looks like intent. And then when I walk up to the back of the Church, they will very slowly sidle up to me. And then, as they get near me, I will see a shifty look...
"He could work no miracle there, though he cured a few sick people by laying his hands on them."As a doctor, I have always loved the last line of this reading. It seems like - for St Mark - just healing a few sick people doesn't really count as a miracle! He takes it for granted that healing is a natural part of God becoming really present in a human life.Well, a few days ago I had a young man in my office with his girlfriend - both much in need of healing. Both of them had just tested HIV...

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