These days you can know when I have been, for a time, freed from the burden of work’s administrative stress when I post here. It means I chose to steal away for a time to breathe and recenter, as it’s only from that center I can write anything. Deo gratias.

I know I am not alone in this struggle.

Anyway, before I leave this stolen moment of time behind in a few minutes, I will share with you three unconnected gifts I received:

1. My daughter Maria and her friend Ashley produced a really fun mashup-cover of two Twenty One Pilots songs. I snuck them into the Seminary late one Saturday night to record in the Faculty Lounge. The seminary puts up with me. I posted this video on Facebook (which I am no longer on because my time is so precious these days), so for those not on Facebook:

2. When my wife and I went away recently around the time of our anniversary to just look at each other for 2 days — my life’s sweetest joy — we watched this symbol of hope rise, and my wife beautifully said: “I didn’t even know we’d died. Did you?” (viz. Eph. 5:31-32 + Col. 3:3):


3. When I gave a talk recently on Jesus, a woman came up to me privately afterward and said what is for me the highest possible fruit of all my theological labors: “During your talk I felt something in my 56 years as a Catholic I’ve never felt: like I want to fall in love with Jesus. I had no idea…” I wish I had had Fr. Pedro Arrupe’s quote memorized to share with her:

“Nothing is more practical than
finding God, than
falling in love
in a quite absolute, final way.
What you are in love with,
what seizes your imagination, will affect everything.
It will decide
what will get you out of bed in the morning,
what you do with your evenings,
how you spend your weekends,
what you read, whom you know,
what breaks your heart,
and what amazes you with joy and gratitude.
Fall in love, stay in love,
and it will decide everything.”

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