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Friar Jack Archive

Heaven Awaits (November)
Size Doesn't Matter, Really (November)
Inspiration and Challenge! (October)
Pope Francis: What a Visit! (October)
Graced Opportunities (September)
The Generosity of God (September)
Revelations at the Beach (September)
God Speaks to All (August)
Loving—Graciously (August)
How Many Languages Does God Speak? (July)
'Our Sister, Mother Earth' (July)
God Needs You! (June)
Hiding from God (June)
The Paradox of Holiness (May)
New, Fresh, Tr... (May)
Mary at the Cross (April)
Learning to Be Human (April)
Just How Big Is God? (April)
The Unexpected (March)
Jesus' Experience of Temptation (March)
I Will Never Take Back My Love (February)
The Journey of Our Lives (February)
The Power of Hope (January)
The Most Reliable Understanding of Heaven (January)
Holding On to Christmas (December)
The God Who Never Gives Up (December)
Not Fear but Love (November)
God Is Not the One Who Punishes (November)
A Joyous Reunion (October)
Jesus: The Good Shepherd (October)
Making God Too Small (October)
Zacchaeus: The Man with No Friends (September)
Beginning Again! (September)
The Mysterious Workings of Grace (August)
My Three Beloved Worlds (August)
The God of the Old and New Testaments (July)
'Those Who Once Walked with Us' (July)
The Theology of a Poet (June)
The Power of the Spirit (June)
Our Deepest Relationship Is with God (May)
Breathing with Two Lungs (May)
The Power of Relationships (April)
New Life (April)
Is It a Sin to worry? (April)
The Measure of Your Love for God (March)
The Other Nine Lepers (March)
Finding the Room Within (February)
Reincarnation and Judgment (February)
Don’t Think Little of Yourself! (January)
Psalm 36: Sin Speaks to the Sinner (January)
St. Francis Makes Bethlehem Real (December)
Amazing Numbers (December)
A Spirit of Gratitude (November)
The Foundation of Our Lives (November)
The Franciscan Coat of Arms (October)
Jesus and the Moth (October)
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton (October)
The Power of 'Yes' (September)
St. Louis, King of France (September)
The Power of Love (August)
The Stigmata of St. Francis (August)
Pope Francis Said What? (July)
'I See His Blood Upon the Rose' (July)
The God We Recognize (June)
St. Francis and the Leper (June)
Who Is The God We Believe In? (May)
A Pope Who Mirrors the Values of St. Francis (May)
Jesus' Brief Time in Ministry (May)
My God and My All! (April)
The Paradox of Holiness (April)
Reflections on the Glorious Mysteries (March)
The Rich Man and His Harvest (March)
Reflections on the Sorrowful Mysteries (February)
The Delightful Book of Proverbs (February)
Anima Christi: A Mystical Prayer (January)
Jesus and the Canaanite Woman (January)
My Friend Murray (December)
God’s Love for All of Us (December)
Reflections on the Luminous Mysteries (November)
What About Purgatory? (November)
Lights Along My Path (October)
The Saints of October (October)
Franciscan Media Launches Digital Magazine (October)
God’s Great Gift: The Commandments (September)
Remembering Mychal Judge, OFM (September)
Little Things Mean a Lot (August)
The Kingdom of God (August)
The Assumption of Mary (July)
Franciscans Support Catholic Sisters (July)
St. Mary Magdalene: Disciple of Jesus (June)
Reflections on the Joyful Mysteries (June)
The Power of Relationships (May)
Memories of Padua (May)
Mother's Day: 2012 (May)
Will I See My Pet in Heaven? (April)
Be Merciful—Just as the Father Is (April)
John Duns Scotus: His View of Christ, Part Three (March)
St. Joseph (March)
John Duns Scotus: His View of Christ, Part Two (February)
The Season of Lent And Reconciliation (February)
John Duns Scotus: His View of Christ (January)
The Moment of Conversion (January)
The Words of St. Anthony Live On (December)
The Face of Jesus (December)
Letting God Love Us (November)
Jesus Chooses His 12 Apostles (November)
New Movie, 'The Way,' Offers Insights (November)
The Virtue of Respect (October)
Honoring St. Clare of Assisi (October)
The Overloaded Camel (September)
The Blessing of Animals (September)
Jesus’ Special Friends (August)
St. Francis, the Sultan and the 10th Anniversary o... (August)
It’s the Rock Foundation That Matters (July)
The Beatitudes: Eight Attitudes That Open Us to Go... (July)
“Lord, When Will the World End?” (June)
Friar Jack’s E-spirations—
Now a Book! (June)

St. Anthony of Padua (June)
St. Anthony and the Albigensian Heresy (May)
Mother's Day: Mother's Love (May)
Will I See My Cat in Heaven? (April)
“Out of the Mouths of Babes” (Mt. 21:14-17) (April)
Psalm 23: The Lord Is My Shepherd (March)
Seed Planted Comes to Life (March)
The Red Wheelbarrow: An Image to Contemplate (February)
The Faithful Servant (February)
Stepping Stones Toward Contemplative Union (January)
Important New Year's Resolution (January)
Time for Some Peace and Quiet (December)
Did the Good Samaritan Struggle? (December)
Assisi Pilgrimage (November)
Keep Things in Perspective (November)
A Meditation on the
Franciscan Coat of Arms (October)

Power Failures (October)
Will We See Our Pets in Heaven? (A New Book on an ... (September)
Our Worst Can Be the Best We Give to God (September)
Reflections on the Stigmata (August)
Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (August)
St. Francis' Prayer Before the Crucifix (July)
The End of Life: Our Questions (July)
The Canticle of Brother Sun: All Creatures = One Family (June)
An Important Question for Fathers (June)
Pope Benedict XVI Puts St. Anthony in Spotlight (May)
The Church's Prayers for the Dying Christian (May)
Sister Thea Bowman: Her Song Goes On (April)
The Reality of Eternal Life (April)
The Canticle of Mary (The Magnificat) (March)
Lent and Forgiveness (March)
The Way of the Cross (February)
The Season of Lent (February)
Giving Glory Back to God (January)
The Power of the Eucharist (January)
Jesus Becomes a Brother to All Creatures (December)
Peter: The Failure Jesus Could Only Love (December)
Will All Creatures Praise God in Heaven? (November)
Where Is the Lord? (November)
Our Christian Creeds: They’re Really Documents of ... (October)
My Mother, the Theologian (October)
Who Wrote the Peace Prayer of St. Francis? (September)
Eucharist: The Promise of Life (September)
St. Francis and the Taming of the Wolf (August)
The Simple Truths of the Gospel (August)
How to Rid the World of Evil (July)
Our Past—Graces or Regrets (July)
President Obama’s Speech to the Muslim World: Look... (June)
A Grain of Sand (June)
Similar Traits of St. Anthony and St. Francis (May)
Difficulties With Prayer (May)
Do Our Pets Go To Heaven? (April)
What Is Holiness Really About? (April)
The Franciscan Coat of Arms (March)
Lent and the Sacrament of Reconciliation (March)
The Holy Spirit: Giver of Life (February)
Jesus on Fasting and Penance (February)
The Holy Spirit: Giver of Life (January)
Our Relationship With Our Deceased (January)

Facing a New Era (December)
Catechism Quiz: Just a Moment, Please (December)
Help Friar Jack’s Ministry (November)
Catechism Quiz: Placed Their Infants for Adoption (November)
Anima Christi: A Prayer for All Centuries (October)
Catechism Quiz: For Anyone Touched by an Abortion (October)
St. Francis Comes to San Francisco (September)
Catechism Quiz: Abortion and the Gift of Life (September)
Pathways of Prayer (Part II) (August)
Catechism Quiz: The Women of the Gospel (August)
Pathways of Prayer (Part I) (July)
Catechism Quiz: The Greatest Commandment (July)
Philippine Diary: St. Anthony Shrine in Forbes Park (June)
Catechism Quiz: The Mosaic of St. Francis (June)
Philippine Diary: How St. Anthony Came to Sampaloc (May)
Catechism Quiz: The Mosaic of Our Lives (May)
Philippine Diary: The Old Franciscan Church in Santa Ana (Apr)
Catechism Quiz: Being Caught by the Lord (Apr)
Philippine Diary: Five Days in Zamboanga (Mar)
Catechism Quiz: Peter, the Failure Only Jesus Could Love (Mar)
Philippine Diary: In the Footsteps of San Pedro Bautista (Feb)
Catechism Quiz: How Are We Touched by God? (Feb)
St. Francis’ Prayer Before the Crucifix (Jan)
Catechism Quiz: Joseph, the Husband of Mary and Foster Father of Jesus (Jan)
A Visit to St. Padre Pio’s Tomb (Jan)

Catechism Quiz: What Is the Word Made Flesh? (Dec)
St. Francis, Creatures and Christmas (Dec)
Catechism Quiz: What Is the Communion of Saints? (Nov)
Three Favorite Hideaways of St. Anthony of Padua (Oct)
Catechism Quiz: How Is the Bible God's Inspired Word? (Oct)
St. Francis and the Birds (Sep)
Catechism Quiz: Reaction to Mother Teresa’s Doubts? (Sep)
Reflections on the Stigmata (Part II) (Aug)
Catechism Quiz: Reflections on Prayer (Aug)
Reflections on the Stigmata (Part I) (Aug)
Catechism Quiz: Should we pray in times of sin? (Jul)
The Cause of Father Solanus Casey (Continued) (Jul)
Catechism Quiz: Mary, the Mother of Jesus (Jun)
St. Anthony and the Tree of Life (Jun)
Catechism Quiz: Why Not Try Meditation? (May)
The Dreams of St. Francis (Apr)
Catechism Quiz: Does It Matter What We Do? (Apr)
A Poem: “I See His Blood Upon the Rose” (Mar)
Fr. Solanus Casey: Will He Be Beatified Soon? (Part II) (Mar)
Fr. Solanus Casey: Will He Be Beatified Soon? (Part I) (Feb)
Catechism Quiz: What Does It Mean to Be Holy? (Feb)
Bold Thoughts on Peace From Pope Benedict XVI (Jan)
Catechism Quiz: God’s Gift of Life/Tragedy of Suicide (Jan)

St. Anthony and the Child Jesus (Dec)
Catechism Quiz: The Church and Its Teaching Role (Dec)
St. Francis Xavier: Great Missionary to the Orient (Nov)
Catechism Quiz: The Roman Catholic Church (Part II) (Nov)
St. John of the Cross: From Darkness to Light (Oct)
Catechism Quiz: The Roman Catholic Church (Oct)
St. Teresa of Avila: Carmelite Reformer/Great Mystic (Sep)
Catechism Quiz: Feast of St. Francis of Assisi (Sep)
A Visit to the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima (Aug)
Catechism Quiz: Questions About Prayer (Part 2) (Aug)
St. Ignatius of Loyola: Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam (Jul)
Catechism Quiz: Questions About Prayer (Jul)
I See His Blood Upon the Rose (Jun)
Catechism Quiz: Who Is Saved? (Jun)
St. Anthony of Portugal (May)
Catechism Quiz: Have You Been Saved? (May)
Stay Close to Life-giving Waters (Apr)
Catechism Quiz: Hell (Apr)
Opening Ourselves to God's Abundant Gift (Mar)
Catechism Quiz: Purgatory (Part II) (Mar)
The Beatitudes: Eight Attitudes for a Holy Lent (Feb)
Catechism Quiz: Purgatory (Part I) (Feb)
St. Francis, St. Anthony and the Smallness of God (Jan)
Catechism Quiz: Heaven (Jan)

Why Did Jesus Come to Dwell Among Us? (December)
Catechism Quiz: The Incarnation (December)
Iraq: Looking for Hope Amid Ashes (November)
Catechism Quiz: Life After Death (November)
All Saints Day in the Philippines (October)
Catechism Quiz: Sacramentals (October)
Why St. Francis Belongs on the Birdbath (September)
Catechism Quiz: Sacrament of Holy Orders (September)
A Prayer to Deepen Our Union With Christ… (August)
Catechism Quiz: Annulment (August)
The Buried Treasure Is Always Available (July)
Catechism Quiz: Marriage and Divorce (July)
Why John Paul II Was ‘Larger Than Life’ (June)
Catechism Quiz: Sacrament of Matrimony (June)
Anthony of Padua: Super-preacher of God’s Word (May)
Catechism Quiz: Anointing of the Sick and Prayers… (May)
As a New Papacy Begins… (Apr)
Catechism Quiz: On the Death of Pope John Paul II (Apr)
The Slippery Slope: From Trust to Presumption (Mar)
Catechism Quiz: What Is Reconciliation? (Part II)  (Mar)
Trusting God in the Desert: A Lenten Meditation (Feb)
Catechism Quiz: What Is Reconciliation? (Part I)  (Feb)
Creating a World of Greater Unity and Justice (Jan)
Catechism Quiz: What Is the Eucharist? (Jan)

Friar Jack’s Christmas Message (Dec)
Catechism Quiz: What Is Confirmation? (Dec)
Heralds of the King (Nov)
Catechism Quiz: What's the Sacrament of Baptism? (Nov)
Did the Saints Fall From Favor After Vatican II? (Oct)
Catechism Quiz: What Are the Seven Sacraments? (Oct)
Feast of St. Francis and the Year of the Eucharist (Sep)
Catechism Quiz: What is the Nativity of Mary? (Sep)
The Underground Railroad (August)
Catechism Quiz: The Assumption of Mary (August)
O Stay, O Stay, Emmanuel! (July)
Faithful Citizenship (July)
St Anthony, More Than Finder of Lost Things! (June)
Recognizing Our Capacity for Evil (May)
The Holy Spirit: Life-Giver (April)
Catechism Quiz: The Resurrection (April)
The Passion of the Christ (March)
Catechism Quiz: The Real St. Patrick (March)
God's World Is Holy (February)
Catechism Quiz: Christianity, Islam and Judaism (Feb)
The Faith of Abraham (January)
Catechism Quiz: The Bible (January)

A Christmas Message From Friar Jack (December)
The Secret of St. Francis (November)
Catechism Quiz: The End Times (November)
Catechism Quiz: Where, Who and How of Heaven (Oct)
A Salute to Pope John Paul II (October)
St. Francis Day at St. John the Divine (September)
Catechism Quiz: Sacrament of Reconciliation (September)
Prayer: How to Listen Better (August)
Catechism Quiz: More on the Mass (August)
Letting God Be God (July)
Catechism Quiz: Changes in the Mass (July)
The Work of Pentecost Continues (June)
Catechism Quiz: St. Anthony of Padua (June)
The Woods in Spring (May)
Catechism Quiz: The Blessed Virgin Mary (May)
St. Francis' Prayer Before the Crucifix... (April)
Catechism Quiz: Good Friday and Jesus' Passion (April)
St. Francis, the Sultan, and the Quest for Peace (March)
Catechism Quiz: Lent 101 (March)
In Forgiving, We Die to Self (February)
Catechism Quiz: Who Was St. Valentine? (February)
New Mysteries of the Rosary—Part 2 (January)
New Mysteries of the Rosary (January)

Catechism Quiz: The Christmas Cycle (December)
Awaiting Christ's Final Coming — With Hope! (December)
Catechism Quiz: Celebrating Advent (November)
Remembering Mychal Judge, O.F.M. (November)
Catechism Quiz: All Saints and All Souls (October)
St. Francis' Bond With Other Creatures (October)
Catechism Quiz: The Truth About St. Francis (September)
First Anniversary of 9/11 (September)
Catechism Quiz: Angels (August)
Our Franciscan Coat of Arms (August)
Catechism Quiz: How Saints Are Made (July)
A Dozen Red Roses (July)
Catechism Quiz: Catholic Weddings (June)
St. Anthony of Padua: Seeking the Face of God (June)
Catechism Quiz: The Holy Spirit, Pentecost and Confirmation (May)
The Holy Spirit, Pentecost and Confirmation (May)
Clergy Sex-Abuse Scandal (April)
Musing About Evil—Round Two (March)
How We Talk About Evil (February)
Praying With Pope John Paul II (January)



Charles de Foucauld: Born into an aristocratic family in Strasbourg, France, Charles was orphaned at the age of six, raised by his devout grandfather, rejected the Catholic faith as a teenager and joined the French army. Inheriting a great deal of money from his grandfather, Charles went to Algeria with his regiment, but not without his mistress, Mimi. <br /><br />When he declined to give her up, he was dismissed from the army. Still in Algeria when he left Mimi, Charles reenlisted in the army. Refused permission to make a scientific exploration of nearby Morocco, he resigned from the service. With the help of a Jewish rabbi, Charles disguised himself as a Jew and in 1883 began a one-year exploration that he recorded in a book that was well received. <br /><br />Inspired by the Jews and Muslims whom he met, Charles resumed the practice of his Catholic faith when he returned to France in 1886. He joined a Trappist monastery in Ardeche, France, and later transferred to one in Akbes, Syria. Leaving the monastery in 1897, Charles worked as gardener and sacristan for the Poor Clare nuns in Nazareth and later in Jerusalem. In 1901 he returned to France and was ordained a priest. <br /><br />Later that year Charles journeyed to Beni-Abbes, Morocco, intending to found a monastic religious community in North Africa that offered hospitality to Christians, Muslims, Jews, or people with no religion. He lived a peaceful, hidden life but attracted no companions. <br /><br />A former army comrade invited him to live among the Tuareg people in Algeria. Charles learned their language enough to write a Tuareg-French and French-Tuareg dictionary, and to translate the Gospels into Tuareg. In 1905 he came to Tamanrasset, where he lived the rest of his life. A two-volume collection of Charles' Tuareg poetry was published after his death. <br /><br />In early 1909 he visited France and established an association of laypeople who pledged to live by the Gospels. His return to Tamanrasset was welcomed by the Tuareg. In 1915 Charles wrote to Louis Massignon: “The love of God, the love for one’s neighbor…All religion is found there…How to get to that point? Not in a day since it is perfection itself: it is the goal we must always aim for, which we must unceasingly try to reach and that we will only attain in heaven.”   <br /><br />The outbreak of World War I led to attacks on the French in Algeria. Seized in a raid by another tribe, Charles and two French soldiers coming to visit him were shot to death on December 1, 1916. <br />Five religious congregations, associations, and spiritual institutes (Little Brothers of Jesus, Little Sisters of the Sacred Heart, Little Sisters of Jesus, Little Brothers of the Gospel and Little Sisters of the Gospel) draw inspiration from the peaceful, largely hidden, yet hospitable life that characterized Charles. He was beatified on November 13, 2005. American Catholic Blog You know, O my God, I have never desired anything but to love you, and I am ambitious for no other glory.

Spiritual Resilience

World AIDS Awareness Day
An e-card from you will brighten someone's day. Let those who are ill know they're not forgotten.

St. Andrew
Legend says that this apostle, patron of Scotland, was crucified on an X-shaped cross.

First Sunday of Advent
Before dinner this evening gather your family to bless the Advent wreath and light one purple candle.

Remember also to give thanks for departed loved ones with whom you’ll someday be reunited.

Thanksgiving Day (U.S.)
Thanks be to God for our families, our homes, our lives. Happy Thanksgiving from Catholic Greetings and

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