Another theme that Father Cantalemessa developed in his talks at the bishops’ retreat was the unity that must exist between the Law and the Spirit that animates the Law. Father Raniero reminded us that both are essential in the spiritual life of anyone who wishes to Read More ››
Monthly Newspaper • DIOCESE OF BRIDGEPORT
When I first began to discern my call to the diaconate several years ago, I knew that I had a strong desire to serve God and his people in a permanent and consecrated way and that God had placed this desire in my heart. I didn’t Read More ››
I looked on in nervous excitement as the two travelers in front of me laid down and kissed the spot where Jesus was born. This is the spot where Jesus was born. I repeated it to myself in hopes that it would help jumpstart my jetlagged Read More ››
The young adult bible study I am attending at St. John’s in Stamford has been eye-opening. We just finished Genesis and while I knew the story of Abraham, I always pictured him as a sort of superhuman figure – graced by God with an impenetrable faith. Read More ››
As it is written in the book of the words of the prophet Isaiah:
‘A voice of one crying out in the desert:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord,
make straight his paths’ (Luke 3:4).
I have a friend who is deployed in an area of the world that Read More ››
I have a particular devotion to St. Andrew, the Apostle. Being the brother of Peter, he often gets overlooked. This resonates with those who often humbly serve behind the scenes, seemingly unappreciated but crucial to spreading the Gospel message. That being said, St. Andrew was the Read More ››
All that we do within our families, at our jobs, or within our parish ministries, begins with a healthy spiritual life. Yet, many have difficulty finding a qualified spiritual director to guide them. A spiritual director can accompany you on the journey to grow closer to Read More ››
A common question that runs in Chrisitan circles is: “Are you a Martha or a Mary?” I have attended many talks centered around the idea that we all need a little bit of both. Both a serving heart and a loving heart are necessary.
Personally, I tend Read More ››
Those of us who are focused on spending eternity with God in heaven realize the importance of a close personal relationship with Jesus. However, our efforts to enhance our relationship with Him often stagnate and grow stale. We go to Mass, but our minds wander. We Read More ››
My life changed forever in 1999 during the midst of a successful executive career and while Jeanne and I were celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary with our two children. I was convinced that I heard a call to the vocation of the diaconate. At age 49. Read More ››
“There’s a cemetery in my backyard!” was a typical anecdote I would tell my peers growing up.
Technically, this cemetery is not directly in my backyard, it’s over a stone wall and to the left…but to a fourth grader “in my backyard” sounded much cooler.
Growing up this Read More ››
As I read and reflected upon Bishop Caggiano’s homily at the Synod on Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment, I was reminded of one of my favorite passages in Luke’s gospel.
Luke Chapter 13:10-17 tells the story of a woman who was burdened by a disabling Read More ››
Thomas Aquinas 8th Grade Learns to Model Christ’s Love and Service in the Community
Throughout the St. Thomas Aquinas School 8th grade retreat, hosted by Father Sam Kachuba, there was one constant scripture passage reiterated throughout the day: “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and Read More ››
As I get older, I realize that struggles, however uncomfortable they may be, are truly a means to sanctification. Challenges teach us to let go of our desire for control, to surrender our will to God’s, and to trust that God’s plan for our lives is Read More ››
I remember hearing from my pastor, twenty-something years ago, after playing a round of golf, something that changed the ‘course’ of my life. He said to my Dad, “Jim, in ten years Tim is going to be one of my deacons!” Hearing what he said gave Read More ››
“Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle…” will be spoken, per the request of Bishop Caggiano, at the end of every Mass said in the Diocese. In the Book of Revelation, it is written, “Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against Read More ››
During my first week on the streets with Christ in the City, I was very much getting used to everything: new surroundings, a new ministry, new people, a new team, and a very new dynamic.
On our second day, we met a new friend named Jeremy. As Read More ››
I have been trying to make sense of this abuse crisis in the Church right now and I am finding there really aren’t words. What does a writer do when there really aren’t words? Working in communications, I have watched as my office has tried our best to Read More ››
When Pope Francis recently declared that the death penalty is “inadmissible” for consideration in any criminal case, some of us actively involved in the anti-death penalty movement were intrigued by the initial responses from many of our Catholic friends and casual supporters of abolition. The directive Read More ››
Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to know, love, and serve the poor, the homeless, the vulnerable.
It’s funny how God works sometimes. On my spring break this past year, I went out to Denver, Colorado to visit a friend of mine who was Read More ››
“Walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8).
Somewhere along my journey as a Catholic, I learned about El Camino de Santiago de Compostela, also known as the Way of St. James. El Camino is a walking pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, a city in where St. James is buried in Read More ››
“If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there my servant will be also; if anyone serves me, the Father will honor him.” (John 12:26)
It was in a spirit of utmost service to God’s people that 18 students and 4 faculty members Read More ››
“Therefore, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and constraints, for the sake of Christ; for when I am weak, then I am strong.” – 2 Corinthians 12:9
In 2014, I chaperoned our youth group’s annual mission trip through Catholic Heart Workcamp, where the theme for our Read More ››
On Monday, June 2, Archbishop José H. Gomez, Archbishop of Los Angeles, shared on his Facebook page the following: “Today I want to pray for all those who have fallen away from the faith. May they come back home — and may they be received with Read More ››
“When God desires a work to be wholly from His hand, He reduces all to impotence and nothingness, and then He acts.”
–Jacques-Benigne Bossuet from Jean-Baptiste Chautard’s Soul of the Apostolate p.105
I serve as a Catholic missionary befriending the homeless with an organization called Christ in the City in Denver, Read More ››
Do you feel stuck in your quest to know God? Have you ever been around a person whose pores breathe perfect and radiant peace? You may pray, go to church, and have a great family, but maybe you don’t feel satisfied in the same way your friend Read More ››
I saw Jesus’s resurrected body. That same body that was crucified and rose almost two thousand years ago was in my hometown. The whole group of about sixty people and I can all testify to it. We saw Him, received Him, and prayed with Him.
It all Read More ››
At Mass, Heaven and Earth meet as the Priest proclaims, “Take this, all of you, and eat of it, for this is my body, which will be given up for you”. On Good Friday, the Son of God was given upfor us on the Cross. As Read More ››
It was hard for me to fall asleep the night before my Ordination to the Transitional Diaconate on May 19, 2018. I was filled with excitement and anticipation at the thought of being in St. Augustine Cathedral in the morning, with my fellow classmates Chris Ford Read More ››
These last 5 years of seminary formation have gone by in a flash, and despite the natural human wrestling with the question of my vocational calling, what has remained constant is God’s grace, and the certainty that I have been called to live a life of Read More ››
“We, for our part, love because He has first loved us” (1 John 4:19). The closer that Ordination comes, the more I find these words echoing in my heart, affirming that the initiative of love and the gift of my vocation do not belong to me. Read More ››
In today’s Gospel, we hear Jesus’ last words to His apostles before His Ascension into Heaven, completing His mission on this earth. As He’s about to return to the Father, Jesus tells His apostles to “go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every Read More ››
When I was first becoming more active in my Catholic faith as a high school student, I remember hearing about the World Youth Day events held throughout the world, drawing thousands of young people from every country imaginable to gather in celebration and prayer with the Read More ››
This week The Face of Prayer will publish its 52nd video, marking one year since this campaign started. It has been a great joy and privilege sharing my video reflections on prayer with you each week, and I hope you found them to be helpful! I Read More ››
“I don’t have time to pray. I’m too busy.” This is the usual excuse I use time and again to rationalize the lull periods in my prayer life. And then I continue to justify and rationalize this statement by listing all the things I have to Read More ››
Pope Francis has a message for us: Do not be afraid of holiness,” he encourages. “It will take away none of your energy, vitality, or joy.” In short, answering the universal call to holiness costs you very little.
Do yourself a favor this Easter season (yes, we Read More ››
During these days of Easter week, the Gospels recount the early appearance accounts of the Risen Lord to his disciples. What is common to many of them is the fact that these disciples could not recognize the Lord’s presence, even when he was standing in front Read More ››
Have you ever been going through a tough time, and somebody told you to “put it before the cross” or “give it up to God?”
I have been given this advice by well-intentioned people countless times as a remedy for everything from test anxiety, to a breakup, Read More ››
Pope Francis has convened the 15th Synod of Bishops for this October. Perhaps you might remember the Diocesan Synod which the Diocese of Bridgeport experienced as a family of faith a few years ago. A Synod of Bishops brings together bishops from around the world, to Read More ››
As a seminarian, I have had the privilege of having great spiritual directors. One of the first things that my spiritual directors have asked me, and continued to ask me throughout our meetings, was how frequently I went to confession. Before I entered seminary, I was Read More ››
FAIRFIELD—Heavy winds and sideways hail is how Convivio began this year, much like the first which was held almost a decade ago in 2010. This year the annual high school retreat, with the theme “Made for More,” was kicked off with a nor’easter. One might describe Read More ››
What is a sacrament? It is an outward sign of God’s grace instituted by Christ. I never really thought about this much, and even recently as I have grown old and withered, I haven’t thought much of that meaning of the word sacrament or the grace Read More ››
This year’s dual feast of St. Valentine and Ash Wednesday is more than a mere coincidence. Both feasts are rooted in love. In fact, all of reality is rooted in God, the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. St. Valentine, a priest who Read More ››
I prayed a lot about a word that I would keep in mind during our pilgrimage to the Holy Land. The word abide came to mind early on in prayer. To sit, remain, dwell. With all that we would be seeing and doing, I realized how Read More ››
When our group set out on our pilgrimage to the Holy Land a few weeks ago, we each had our own ideas about what we would get out of the trip. Some of these ideas were vague, some specific, but all were more or less centered Read More ››
On January 5th a group of “strangers” and I embarked on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and our lives were forever changed. Each stop was more breathtaking and moving than the next.
When January 13th came along, and It was time for the trip to end, Read More ››
“What are you looking for?”
This was the focal point of our pilgrimage. That throughout this journey, open our hearts, open our minds, and discover the answer to the question that tugs at the center of our lives.
In the grotto at the Church of Annunciation, the place Read More ››
I’ve always loved tradition. Even when I was little, Christmas wasn’t complete without going to Mass with my family, lighting the Advent wreath, and driving around to see beautiful luminary displays.
As I’ve grown older, the traditions of the Advent and Christmas seasons are still important to Read More ››
“How can this be?” These are the words we hear Mary respond to the Angel in Luke’s Gospel, when he informs her that she will conceive the Messiah. (Not big news or anything, right?) This is frequently my response to many moments in life that catch Read More ››
30 of us began our pilgrimage to NCYC from the Bridgeport Diocese to Yonkers. What a beautiful surprise to worship at the St. Joseph’s Seminary with approximately 90 more pilgrims. We would embark together on two buses through the night.
Feeling God’s presence at the onset set Read More ››
As a member of the High School Apostles, I still picture my earliest days within the group. Like with any new experience, the most difficult action is to simply step through the door on that first meeting. I approached the Fraternas’ house, took a deep breath, Read More ››
I was from Catholic family and attended Catholic elementary school. My friends and I would dress “like nuns” when we played school. The sisters who taught us were mostly junior professed and fun. I joined their vocation club, but meetings just served to let us hang Read More ››
It is hard to find a place where you can express your faith in high school; let alone find friends that have the same faith you. At youth group you’re able to do both of those. I go to youth group at Saint Catherine’s of Siena. Read More ››
On October 12, 2017, three of my classmates and I went on a pilgrimage to Fatima for the 100th anniversary of the Miracle of the Sun. After classes on Thursday we began the journey the Fatima where we arrived at the Shrine of Fatima for the Read More ››
When I was asked to accompany our Diocesan trip to Ethiopia with Catholic Relief Services and Turning Wine into Water, I thought the theme of the trip was going to be “For I was thirsty, and you gave me drink.” In fairness to me, we were Read More ››
In August 2016, I was fortunate enough to travel to Poland with my church. On that trip, I encountered people who truly changed my life. My roommate, and now best friend, taught me that you don’t need to always be with someone to know them fully. Read More ››
Strong faith in high school is beautiful and sometimes rare. Joining a parish youth group or an organization like High School Apostles has been a way to meet more teenagers who are involved in their faith. Having a group of active faith members inspires me to Read More ››
In 8th grade, I was preparing to make my confirmation, and as every other kid in the Diocese would, I had to complete service hours. To fulfill some of my service hours, I would go to Eucharistic Adoration in order to receive the hours I needed. Read More ››
Last week, I had the opportunity to welcome over 850 of our teachers and administrators back to school at our 2017 Diocesan Convocation for Catholic School Educators. In my address to those in attendance, I talked about the interwoven nature of our Catholic Identity and Academics. Read More ››
This August I attended a retreat in Centerburg, Ohio, called School of the New Evangelization (SNE) hosted by Saint Paul’s Outreach (SPO). SPO is an organization that equips college students to build “evangelistic communities that provide a unique quality and depth of formation in the Catholic Read More ››
I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with this time of the year. On the one hand, I love the crispness of the air, the coolness of the nights, pumpkin spice flavored things, apple picking, and college football. On the other, I always hated that summer was Read More ››
“Who do you say that I am?” Such a powerful question coming from Our Lord today in the Gospel. Met with confusion over who this Jesus is, many people murmured about Him. So Christ asked His closest followers who the crowds said He was, He asked Read More ››
The first Sundays of my life were spent in the pews of Saint Joseph’s Church in Brookfield. It was here that I first saw Jesus, in the coloring pages of our children’s booklets. And as I started CCD, I heard His name in Christian songs. And Read More ››
A mother, out of love for her daughter, goes out of her way to find her daughter help, for she is tormented by demons, the Gospel tells us. Met with dismissiveness from the Apostles, she begs the Lord to intervene in her daughter’s life, humbling herself Read More ››
The most powerful thing about the Camino de Santiago is what it teaches you about yourself. Along this ancient route, pilgrims walk to the city of Compostela in northwestern Spain where the bones of the apostle St. James are buried. As I walked The Way with Read More ››
What is your “walking on the water” moment? Sounds like a shocking question, but I promise it makes some sense in light of today’s Gospel. The Apostles are on a boat being rocked by a storm when the Lord comes walking on the water, in the Read More ››
We were never meant to fear death. It was never God’s intention that we be afraid to die. This fear comes from a lack of trust in God, like the lack of trust that our first parents experienced. Yet, just as we turn to Our Blessed Read More ››
God’s love is abundant.
Something tells me this isn’t news to anyone, because we hear tales of God’s love constantly in our pews and in our lives. But do we actually believe this? Do we actually, in the depths of our hearts, believe God the Father’s words Read More ››
I was raised Southern Baptist, with my paternal grandfather, 4 uncles and 7 cousins all being Southern Baptist ministers. So I grew up with all the typical rumors and fears of the Catholic Church.
But, in college, I had a roommate who was very Catholic and attended Read More ››
This past weekend, I had the opportunity to attend Steubenville NYC, a conference for teens hosted by the Franciscan University of Steubenville and Life Teen. Every year, they host over twenty “Steubie Conferences” all over the country that are centered around living out the faith as Read More ››
Following the Convocation of Catholic Leaders I began thinking that I should excuse myself from any church leadership role because the emphasis was on revitalizing the church through its members emerging into adulthood. And I am nearly three quarters of a century old.
Although I have the Read More ››
This past May, I had the opportunity to travel to Ethiopia with Catholic Relief Services, as part of a group of youth ministry leaders to experience the work they are doing. CRS serves the poorest of the poor in over 100 countries and part of my Read More ››
This past year, I have had the incredible opportunity to serve with FOCUS, the Fellowship of Catholic University Students. FOCUS exists as a response to Pope St. John Paul II’s call for a new evangelization, a call to reach out to those who have fallen away Read More ››
The story goes that when Jesus arrived in Heaven after the Resurrection, the angels welcomed Him with great song and praise, congratulating Him on completing His mission. One angel asked, “Lord, now that you have given salvation to the world and formed your church, what happens Read More ››