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Praying with the Examen or How to Notice God at Work in our Lives!
The Examen is a form of prayer popularised by St Ignatius, founder of the Jesuit Order. Ignatius believed that it was all too easy for us to overlook the sacred in our thoughts and actions and so he developed the Examen as a way of identifying God’s presence in our day. It does this in 2 ways: firstly, through looking back over our day to identify what is drawing us to God and secondly, through identifying what is pulling us away from Him.
There are usually 5 steps used to review the day:
1. Becoming aware of God’s presence.
2. Reviewing the day with gratitude.
3. Paying attention to your emotions.
4. Choosing 1 feature and praying about it
5. Looking forward to tomorrow.
For information and articles about praying with the Examen and other aspects of The Ignatian Way of ‘Finding God in All Things’ see the ignatianspirituality.com website. You could start by reading this simple article.
St. Valentine’s Day
The Christian message is all about love! No need to save it all for St Valentine’s Day!
We can let the important people in our lives know that they are loved and loveable everyday!
Here is a reminder of what St Paul has to say about what love looks like!
Most people are familiar with the Stations of the Cross but may not know the Stations of the Resurrection which were prayed after Easter in the Early Church. Sometimes called the Via Lucis or the Way of Light, these stations offer a journey of joy as we follow Jesus and his companions on 14 of the most inspiring events that happened after the Resurrection. Here is a link to prayer, reflection and music suggestions for each of these 14 stations for adults and here is a link to the same for children, with accompanying activities and videos.
Why not set up a Prayer or Sacred Space in your home? The Derry Diocese have some suggestions here for how to do it beautifully and simply. Their suggestions are for Lent but can of course be adapted to reflect the joy of the Easter Season!
Sunday, 25th July is the first World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly which has just been inaugurated by Pope Francis. Here is his video message to Grandparents/The Elderly and here is a link to his written message.
SEASON OF CREATION
The Season of Creation is marked throughout the Christian world each year, from Sept 1 each year to the Feast of St Francis of Assisi on Oct 4. It celebrates both the joy of creation as well as encouraging initiatives to protect the natural environment. To respond to the climate crisis, and to mark the Season of Creation, Archbishop Farrell has published a pastoral letter, The Cry of the Earth—The Cry of the Poor: the Climate Catastrophe—Creation’s Urgent Call for Change. This pastoral is an invitation to all to reflect on the climate crisis in new ways, so that the baptised may live the life of faith more vibrantly, and everyone may respond more actively to the serious situation in which the world finds itself. The pastoral letter is available online, as well as in hardcopy from Veritas.