Friar’s E-Spirations: The God We Recognize

Every once in a while (quite often, actually) there is a single word used in the Gospel that helps us understand our lives. One such word occurs in Mark's Gospel regarding one of the towns along the shores of Lake Gennesaret, also called the Sea of Galilee. We hear some

Christopher Heffron

Franciscan E-spirations

Friar’s E-Spirations: Reincarnation and Judgment

In recent years, we’ve heard references to the concept of reincarnation. This is the theory that the soul or spirit, after death, begins a new life in a new body depending on the moral quality of the person’s previous life. This doctrine is a central tenet of Indian religions. It

Christopher Heffron

Franciscan E-spirations

Friar’s E-Spirations: Beginning Again!

September, for me, is a month of beginning again, new opportunities, and rethinking. Teachers and students have begun the school year. Parishes begin new programs or restart what stopped during vacation time. With Labor Day, we say goodbye to the leisure days of summer and get back on schedule with

Christopher Heffron

Franciscan E-spirations

Friar’s E-Spirations: Learning to Be Human

In dedicating himself to those with special needs, Jean Vanier is a great inspiration to me. His message has wider meaning for the whole human family.That was the judgment of the Templeton Foundation, who gave Jean Vanier, now in his 80s, the 2015 Templeton Prize for “his innovative

Christopher Heffron

Franciscan E-spirations

Friar’s E-Spirations: Life Is like Parachuting

Margaret Mead, the famed social anthropologist, coined a very thought-provoking statement. She said: “Living is like parachuting. You have to do it right the first time!” There is hardly a truer statement than that. We have only one life to live. We live, we die, and then we experience eternity.

Christopher Heffron

Franciscan E-spirations

Friar’s E-Spirations: Jesus on Fasting and Penance

Early in the Gospel of Mark (2:18-22), Jesus runs into a series of conflicts with the Jewish religious leaders. One such conflict involved the law of fasting. We know that in all religions (and even secular organizations, for that matter) there are certain rituals and practices that identify a

Christopher Heffron

Franciscan E-spirations

Friar’s E-Spirations: Sister Thea Bowman:
Her Song Goes On

On March 30, 2010, some 50 friends of Sister Thea Bowman gathered at her grave in Memphis, Tennessee, where she is buried beside her parents. She had died exactly 20 years earlier of bone cancer at age 52. At the graveside ceremony, Sister Thea, a Franciscan Sister of Perpetual Adoration, was hailed as the

Christopher Heffron

Franciscan E-spirations

Friar’s E-Spirations: Seed Planted Comes to Life

Few will deny that, in our past, there have been events—good and bad—which at the time may not have seemed significant, but years later greatly influence us: a significant teacher, a book we’ve read or an event we’ve witnessed. The Gospels are full of such moments in which people met

Christopher Heffron

Franciscan E-spirations

The Face of Jesus

The Face of Jesus

We are all sinners. But with Jesus, we need never be afraid. By Jim Van Vurst, OFM

Jim Van Vurst, OFM

Franciscan E-spirations

Friar’s E-Spirations: The Saints of October

One of the riches of our Catholic faith is our calendar of canonized saints. Of course, all in heaven are saints because of their union with God. But, from the beginning, the Church has proclaimed certain women and men as official saints because their lives give us powerful examples of

Christopher Heffron

Franciscan E-spirations