Consider your own calling, brothers and sisters. Not many of you were wise by human standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. Rather, God chose the foolish of the world to shame the wise, and God chose the weak of the world to shame the strong, and God chose the lowly and despised of the world, those who count for nothing, to reduce to nothing those who are something, so that no human being might boast before God. It is due to him that you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God, as well as righteousness, sanctification, and redemption, so that, as it is written, Whoever boasts, should boast in the Lord.
R. (12) Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own. Blessed the nation whose God is the LORD, the people he has chosen for his own inheritance. From heaven the LORD looks down; he sees all mankind. R. Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own. But see, the eyes of the LORD are upon those who fear him, upon those who hope for his kindness, To deliver them from death and preserve them in spite of famine. R. Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own. Our soul waits for the LORD, who is our help and our shield, For in him our hearts rejoice; in his holy name we trust. R. Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own.
Jesus told his disciples this parable: “A man going on a journey called in his servants and entrusted his possessions to them. To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one– to each according to his ability. Then he went away. Immediately the one who received five talents went and traded with them, and made another five. Likewise, the one who received two made another two. But the man who received one went off and dug a hole in the ground and buried his master’s money. After a long time the master of those servants came back and settled accounts with them. The one who had received five talents came forward bringing the additional five. He said, ‘Master, you gave me five talents. See, I have made five more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’ Then the one who had received two talents also came forward and said, ‘Master, you gave me two talents. See, I have made two more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’ Then the one who had received the one talent came forward and said, ‘Master, I knew you were a demanding person, harvesting where you did not plant and gathering where you did not scatter; so out of fear I went off and buried your talent in the ground. Here it is back.’ His master said to him in reply, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I did not plant and gather where I did not scatter? Should you not then have put my money in the bank so that I could have got it back with interest on my return? Now then! Take the talent from him and give it to the one with ten. For to everyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. And throw this useless servant into the darkness outside, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.’”
If your definition of beauty and worth is measured solely by what you see in this mirror, that’s your problem and it’s up to you to fix that. Take control. You are not a powerless victim to the lies of a photoshopped world. Reclaim the meaning of beauty and remind yourself all day every day so you can rewrite your own inner dialogue.
How many of you are uncomfortable with the idea of living with a new roommate, or even living away from home? I went to college 12-hours from home, and I was royally homesick for a full semester. But, I stuck it out, and listened to God. When I was open to learn why, He was able to show me why He called me there, and give me the necessary grace to grow more comfortable in my surroundings.
It’s funny how fast it happened, and it’s even funnier how I was convinced that I wasn’t leading a double life, although I clearly was. I would drink with my party friends on Friday night, and then wake up to meet one of my “good friends” for Mass, breakfast, and studying. I would always drink just to the point where I would start to feel guilty, and then I would stop. I would visualize the Confession line in my brain, and weigh each choice against whether or not it would land me in that line.
Here’s where things become tricky. The title of the film, If I Stay, is also the central plot point and theme. Mia must choose whether to live or die. From a Catholic perspective,a life-affirming perspective, it’s not okay that she is giving serious thought to never waking up again.
The main message of this movie is that in sports as in life you won’t always be the winner. You won’t always be on top. Your true character is defined by how you handle times of victory and times of defeat. The movie does a great job of highlighting the virtue of humility, a quality that really stands out as counter-cultural in sports today.
Your faith isn’t your Mom and Dad’s thing anymore. If you have questions, search for the answers, I promise you they’re there! It’s up to you to respond to the invitation from Christ to draw nearer to Him. College can be one of the most spiritually transformative times in your life. If you give these next four years to Christ, He’s going to give you back more than you ever dreamed of receiving.
I signed up for Life Teen’s Camp Tepeyac only days before it started, confident that God wanted me to go. It was the first night, second to last obstacle in the messy games course when I hurt my shin. I couldn’t put much weight on it but after some ice and bandages, it was doing better. While going to get cleaned up, I ended up slipping, falling on my arm, and breaking it. Waiting in the ER, despite the panic attack, extreme shivering, and shin and elbow pain, I still felt like God had me there for a reason.
Choosing to center your relationship on Christ is going to bring you the most peace and lasting happiness. I’m glad that you want more for yourself than to settle for falling into a pattern of sin.
Sometimes we, as Catholics, think going to Confession and promising it (our sin) won’t happen again will magically give us the power to stop sinning. While Confession is a great start, it is just that – a starting place. God gives us grace to continue moving forward, He offers us help to avoid sin, and we have to do our part to follow His path to holiness.
Every couple of weeks I solemnly walk into a small room where another person is sitting. It kinda feels like a closet, kinda looks like the smallest grandmotherly-parlor-sitting-room you’ve ever seen (complete with appropriate seating and decoration).
We sit there, me and this other person, and have a nice little conversation that consists of me telling them all the things I’ve done wrong recently. It’s a varied, and unexciting list that doesn’t change nearly as often as I change the tone of voice I use to disguise myself. (Don’t judge me. You know you’ve done it too.)
The reason behind my anxiety was that of a former soldier. It was just in 2011 I was on a patrol in Afghanistan. With our armored vehicles pinned between a high flowing river and a road that had just given out. We had dismounted to set perimeters on the heights around us as well as check the layout. But none the less, we were sitting ducks and this was a perfect place for an ambush. The ride there had already shot my nerves. We had gotten Intel that the Taliban had been very present there as well as the road side bombs that accompanied them.
This summer I had the opportunity to go to Campobasso, Italy as the youth ambassador and representative for the United States, to meeting of Italian immigrant descendants from the Italian region of Molise. I was excited to learn about my heritage, but I became ecstatic when I learned Pope Francis would be in Campobasso during […]
The book is a thought-provoking introspective master work.
The film adaptation? Meh.
It isn’t bad, exactly. But it’s definitely not good. Many of the things that work so well in the book (the sterility of the community juxtaposed against the vividness of what used to be, for example) are tedious on screen. The moments that should have grabbed our attention and floored us just…didn’t.
When I was in 5th grade, Beth gave me a packet of Catholic magazines that she had when she was a teenager. I responded oh-so-enthusiastically by shoving them in my closet and forgetting about them. Though I believed in God, I had rarely applied that belief to my daily tasks.
About twelve years ago a teen named Billy asked me this question, “Why do you Catholics believe that Mary ascended into heaven, when it’s not even in the Bible?”
He said “you Catholics” because he went to a local Bible Church but had been coming to a Life Teen Summer Bible Study with some of his Catholic friends.
“Well, first… ” I replied, “Mary did not ascend into heaven; the Blessed Virgin Mary was assumed into heaven. Jesus ascended by His own power. Mary was taken up into heaven by God.” That little difference is a big difference, so I wanted to be sure he understood it.
Billy then replied, “Okay, fine… but it’s still not in the Bible. The Church made it up.”
This is where the conversation got really interesting.
Billy then replied, 'Okay, fine’Ìâ‰âÂÌâ_but it's still not in the Bible. The Church made it up.'
This is where the conversation got really interesting.
When I did speak to some people about depression I was met with a mixed response; well-meaning people said some non-productive things. One friend, who is a faithful Christian, told me that, “It was a spiritual problem and I didn’t need a diagnosis.” I felt even weaker, “He’s right,” I thought, “If I had a better prayer life and closer relationship with God, I wouldn’t feel the way that I do.” Those feelings were what caused me to stay quiet.
In some places, the pressure to date is ridiculous. Boys and girls used to be total opposites, gross even, and now they suddenly look a little more interesting… And when they start to pair off, I know that it can be tough to be left behind on that. It would be totally awesome if someone that you liked also thought that you were cute, funny, smart, and interesting — but let me ask you a question: Would you rather have the tennis courts or the front porch? Please, don’t waste your first kiss.
15. Will I really be able to live without instant communication with friends and family? Goodbye Facebook and iPhone. Goodbye Tumblr and Pinterest. Goodbye email and phone calls and text messaging. Hello again, snail mail!
16. There will definitely be more people at my wedding than I ever imagined there would be.
17. So. Many. Layers. I hope they keep the air conditioning on all year long.
Early in the week our whole group quickly humbled ourselves and just let God do His thing! Our parish is located in an area that is not known for diversity, so visiting an Indian Reservation and learning about their culture was a first for my teens. The residents and family members would come out, help the teens on the houses, and talk to them about their life. It was amazing to see these teens be inspired by the residents’ culture and attitude.
This doesn’t mean that you should just settle for boring friends. When Jesus promised to give us “life to the full” (John 10:10), He must’ve meant something more exciting than a youth group bowling trip. Have you prayed for good friendships? Ask God to provide friends that are pursuing holiness that you also enjoy hanging out with.
If one part of the body is hurt, does not the whole body feel its pain? We must use this as an example, for our brothers and sisters in Christ across the world. We must feel their pain, and as their fellow Christians we must unite in solidarity for Holy Mother Church.