Spiritual Reflection and Renewal

Embracing Our Crosses is the Gateway to Easter Joy

There is still always a reason to celebrate Easter amid worldwide somber. Easter joy is not dependent on us and our situation. It is dependent on God. What we believe on Easter is not only that Jesus has risen from the dead. God has plans to do the same for us—to raise us and lead […]

The “Walk to Emmaus” is Also Our Walk

“We had hoped that He (Jesus) would be the one who was going to set Israel free (Luke 24:21).”  This statement captures the sentiment of the two disciples while they were walking along the road from Jerusalem to Emmaus. Defeat. Discouragement. Despair.  They were afraid and bewildered over what happened to Jesus on Good Friday. Jesus […]

We Do Not Suffer Alone, or in Isolation

  A sense of loss brought about by illness and death is undoubtedly a difficult emotion to bear. We usually find consolation from our grief in being able to personally bid goodbye to our loved ones and see them during their last moments in life. However, this situation has changed amid the Corona virus pandemic […]

Finding Hope in Difficult Times

Like Joseph in the Old Testament, We are Put into a Pit; Like Him, May We Also Hold Firm on Our Hope We are entering another day of uncertainty with the Corona Virus scare. As we go farther on, maybe our questions, apprehensions, and concerns for the future are also intensified: What will happen to […]

“We Stayed At Work for You, You Stay at Home for Us”

Before I was ordained a priest, I worked as a nurse, and I know what it means to be in the frontline. Healthcare workers are always directly involved with the task of caring for the sick, not only in times of crisis but also in times of our celebrations. Many may not realize it, but […]

The Two Sides of the Coin in the “Corona Virus” Lockdown

On the front side of the coin are the faces of those who are in the place of privilege who might welcome the lockdown in the comfort of their homes. They have abundance. Their refrigerators are full and their boredom is easily relieved with Netflix and modern electronic communication devices. They are those whose jobs […]

Where and How We Spend our Time May Define Our Character

Every person, rich or poor, famous or unknown, have more or less 15000 minutes a day, 170 hours in a week, and 8,800 hours in a year. Time is one of life’s most significant values. We all must exchange a tremendous amount of precious, never- to- be recovered time for everything we do. Yes, absolutely […]

Wisdom is Supreme; The First Thing To Do is to Acquire Wisdom

There is a famous saying that goes, “Put the first things first.” If God appears and tells you that He will give you whatever you ask from Him, what is the first thing that comes into your mind? I asked this particular question to several people. The general consensus was health, peace, and a kind […]

Discovering Blessings through Adversity

by Robert Gekle Soon after treatment of my cancer, a real challenge emerged—loss of physical control over my body.  As a former lifeguard (20 years before the surf) and a collegiate tennis player, I was in pretty good shape at 65. However, as I aged, I became rounder  (220 lbs. 5’11”) and developed hypertension.  However, […]

Love Conquers Fear

I would like to share with you a note from Robert Gekle, a resident of Vero Beach who finds interest in this blog: Dear Father Dennis,  I read with great interest about your new ministry. We met one Sunday morning in Saint John of the Cross. I sat with you and you told me that […]

God Exceeds Our Expectations: A Lesson from the Epiphany

There are times that we fail to meet our expectations in life, which causes disappointment, and at times, hopelessness. You may have carefully prepared for your retirement to be financially secure to live comfortably. However, something went wrong with your investment portfolio. You ended up working beyond the retirement age. You expect that you spend […]

Setting the Tone for a Blessed Great Year!

Beginnings usually set the tone and direction of every task.  For instance, the first note in a song sets the tone that provides the rhythm of the entire song.  If the music leader or the organist gives the wrong cue, the whole song may be in disarray. As we begin the new year, it is important […]

What is the Best Gift for Our Elderly Parent?

There were three brothers who were successful in life and were financially well-off.  They tried to outdo each other on the present for their mom, who was celebrating her 90th birthday. The eldest gave her a big house.  The second, a luxury car with a driver to take mom to places she wanted to go. The […]

True Greatness Comes From Serving Others

A Franciscan, Dominican and Jesuit priests were discussing and debating the greatness of their communities while they were walking. Suddenly, an apparition of the Holy Family—Joseph, Mary and Jesus appeared in front of them. They wanted to show off the best way to acknowledge the Holy Family. The Franciscan immediately fell on his face and […]

Is It Ok to Have Doubts About the Faith?

by:  Fr. John D’Mello We are living in a culture of “over-belief”. We are often too gullible, we believe everything that comes down the pike; the more weird the news, the better. I know people who believe in crystal balls, people who believe in magic pyramids, people who believe in palmistry and astrology, but there […]

An Act of Kindness is a Demonstration of a Genuine Faith

There are several Gospel stories of people helping to carry the sick to Jesus to be healed. One such story is related in the Gospel of Matthew where a group of caring individuals brought a paralytic to Jesus (Mt 9:1-17).  This image of reaching out to others in need reflects the real attitude of the […]

Do You Want to be Happy? Be Humble: A Lesson from John the Baptist

The humility of St. John the Baptist may shed light to a society where there is widespread attention given to self-gratification, self-interest, prestige and material possessions. John’s examples may help remind us of our real purpose in this world. We are called to be persons for others. Pride and self-gratification may just generate despair. John […]

Understanding Grief Helps in Coping with Loss

Besides my own experiences with loss, I also encountered many people who went through the pain of loss in my work and ministry in healthcare. I saw the process of grief described in textbooks in actual situations. Loss is a part of life because life is changing. Life on earth has a beginning and an […]

Our Lives Always Have a Sparkle of Hope

Florence May Chadwick was an American swimmer who was the first woman ever to cross the English Channel both ways in 1950.  On the 4th of July 1952, Florence, then 34, had set her goal at being the first woman to swim the 26 -mile distance between Catalina Island and Southern California coastline, just two […]

Embarking on Something New Helps Discover Our “Best Self”!

There is a scientific claim that our body undergoes cellular renewal at various rates every single day. As our body renews itself in the physiologic level, we also need to renew other aspects of our life, including our attitude towards ourselves, others, the world, and God. Renewal helps us see a different perspective of the […]

HEALING MEANS FINDING “INNER PEACE” AMID SUFFERINGS

by Fr. Dennis Gonzales At the end of the second year of our studies and formation at the seminary, we are sent to different hospitals for our clinical pastoral education (CPE).  CPE is part of the seminary curriculum that offers training to future ministers to provide pastoral and spiritual care to individuals and families who […]

DON’T BE AFRAID TO LEAVE COMFORT ZONE!

One of the Biblical narratives that took place around the Sea of Galilee was when Jesus appeared to the disciples. They were terrified upon seeing Jesus walking toward them on the lake. They thought He was a ghost.  They only calmed down upon knowing that it was Jesus who told them that it was Him. […]