Final Retreat

Today begins the final retreat for the Novitiate year. As of today, there are 20 days left until I return to Chicago.

Unfortunately there won't be any internet access, so I'll be "off the grid" for a while.

One topic of note: I've been recommended for vows, and after making the request to my provincial, I've been approved to take first vows on July 31, 2010 in Milwaukee. There's a lot of thoughts tied into it, however part of our final retreat is to take 10 minutes to discuss the Novitiate year, explain what we've learned, and how it has changed us. It sounds like a great blog article...unfortunately I've decided to wait until after the retreat to share this bit of personal reflection.

Thanks to everyone who's kept me in their prayers this entire time. After this week, it's all about Chicago, returning to college, and living a vowed life.

What's It Like To Pursue Religious Life?

For those of you who've kept hitting the F.A.Q's button on the menu, I've finally gotten around to getting the page up! Sorry about the delay.

I get a lot of questions about my vocation, how everything worked, and how I made it through difficult experiences in my journey. Even when I started blogging four years ago, I wanted to be able to help people going through the same issues I was. Figuring out what God is asking of us can be a tough job; it can be even tougher if we don't know where to seek help. Hopefully by putting up the page, it will give some people access to ask questions while giving them a chance to ask their own.

Enjoy, and never hesitate to ask questions...especially when God's involved. You can either click the F.A.Q button on the menu or click here.


World Cup Soccer: The Good, Bad, and The Ugly

While much of the world's attention is focused on South Africa as some of the greatest names in soccer (or football, if you prefer) play for their nations, there are plenty of peripheral stories tied into this competition. What might surprise some people is existence of stories that involve the World Cup and faith.

Unfortunately, not all the stories have good endings.

What's In A Name (Day)?

Today I celebrated my name day. For people outside Catholic Christian culture, this can be a point of confusion. Do I have another name? What kind of "celebration" is it? Where did the tradition come from? Searching online lead to only a few sites, so I thought I'd take some time to explain exactly what a name day is, and how I choose to recognize it.

The concept of a name day goes back to the Middle Ages. It started with the Orthodox and Catholic churches as a way to combat, what they felt, was a pagan celebration. Birthdays were considered to be festivals for the rich, for kings, and for flase gods. (see Natalis Invicti)

A Christology of Debtors and Creditors

Reflecting on the Gospel reading from this Sunday, I saw a lot that spoke of the relationship of debtors and creditors. Having had the experience of both sides, I find it a very interesting and challenging metaphor for the Kingdom of God. In our world where debt and credit are shared as much as blame and personal worth, are we able to truly forgive the debts of others, and expect others to do the same.

I should start out with two stories from my own experience:

Jesus the 12th Man?

You know it's World Cup time when Jesus laces up to hit the pitch.

Today's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette had a picture of the Child of Miracles from St. Gabriel the Archangel Church in Mexico. Since 1990, the statue has been dressed up in the uniform of the Mexican national team and considered the 12th man.

Working Out Some Bugs

...with this new template. Hopefully it will be completely functional by this weekend.

Peace and blessings. - @vitoofmcap

Corpus Christi

For the feast of Corpus Christi, I decided to use a prayer written by Fr. Christopher Rengers, OFM Cap., a wonderful man who passed away earlier this year. I hope his words will give some insight into the meaning of this day. Peace. -V

At the Last Supper, Eternal Father, Jesus spoke much about You to His apostles, He also prayed to You for them and for all who would believe in You through their word. In these hushed moments charged with the drama of leave-taking and approaching capture, condemnation, crucifixion and death, His thoughts turned to You. His Heart yearned to make us one with You even as You and He were one.

The Last 47 Days...

47 days left of Novitiate. Some of us have eagerly been counting since the winter. This Memorial Day weekend made it even more apparent that our year is almost over; soon we return to our respective provinces to take First Vows.

So like most terms, there's a desire to "check out." In high school we called it "Senior-itis." The year's almost done; we're almost out of here; let's just coast the rest of the way.

But is that the best way to spend the most unique year of my life?