Friday, July 30, 2021

St. Ignatius of Loyola - July 31


One of St. Ignatius of Loyola's most famous prayers is the Suscipe. Amy Welborn writes about it here:

Adapted from The Words We Pray
Take Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding, and my entire will, all that I have and possess. Thou hast given all to me. To Thee, O lord, I return it. All is Thine, dispose of it wholly according to Thy will. Give me Thy love and thy grace, for this is sufficient for me.
Ignatius Loyola
Decision making is hard. We may live in a time and place that allows us much freedom and choice, but there are times when we think it’s too much. Too many choices. Too much freedom. We might as well trudge down the road more traveled, might as well watch the same channel out of two hundred every night, might as well keep sending our kids to the same lousy school even though we know it’s lousy, might as well keep going to the same dreadful job even though we suspect it just might be leaching our soul away, might as well just turn our backs from the choices in the baskets completely and start sifting the sawdust through our fingers again—that’s a whole lot easier.

What Does God Want?

One reason it’s difficult to make choices is that, although all of us have limitations of one sort or another, it’s actually rather shocking how much freedom we really have. If I wanted to, I could do something that addresses my yearning to do something more concretely practical to help other people. I could announce that I’m going to nursing school, for example. Or I could give in to my lifelong fascination with infant linguistic development, and get into graduate school. I could do it. And maybe I will.

The Words We Pray by Amy Welborn is a collection of short essays that reflect on the meaning of traditional Catholic prayers, tying together history, theology, spirituality, and personal devotion.

Read more about it here.
The monks raised their voices in hope at the end of each phrase, and then paused a great pause in between, letting the hope rise and then settle back into their hearts. My own heart rushed, unbidden by me, uncontrolled, right into those pauses and joined the prayer. A prayer written by a eleventh-century bedridden brother, chanted by monks in the middle of Georgia, and joined by me and the silent folk scattered in the pews around me, each with his or her own reasons to beg the Virgin for her prayers.
And we weren’t the only ones joined in that prayer. With us was a great throng of other Christians who had prayed it over the centuries, and who are praying it at this very moment.
My days as a prayer snob were over.

It would be a great resource for inquirers into the Catholic faith.