Seeing with ‘new eyes’

By Michelle Francl-Donnay I rejoiced when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” And now our feet are standing within your gates, Jerusalem. – Ps. 122:1-2 The suitcases were hauled up from their basement resting places, while the kitchen door sprouted lists of chores that must be done, things […]

Warmly welcoming others

By Michelle Francl-Donnay For I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me drink; I was a stranger and you made me welcome. – Mt. 25:35a It had been raining for the last 24 hours, and would rain for the next 48. It’s what you get when a typhoon […]

Stripped of words to find the Word

By Michelle Francl-Donnay In the beginning was the Word: the Word was with God and the Word was God. – Jn. 1:1 We had an hour at Tokyo Station to find lunch, pick up dinner to eat later, and the right platform for our train. It was not enough. After a 20-minute hike across the […]

A banked fire: Start the day with prayer

By Michelle Francl-Donnay The favors of the Lord are not exhausted, his mercies are not spent; They are renewed each morning, so great is his faithfulness. – Lamentations 3:22-23 My mother despaired of me. While my brothers scarfed down bowls of Frosted Flakes doused in milk and toast slathered in strawberry jam, her oldest child […]

Finding courage to reverence a stranger

By Michelle Francl-Donnay “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.” – Mt. 25:35-36 Market East Station at 10 p.m. is eerily empty. […]

Believing in the Holy Spirit

By Michelle Francl-Donnay In the same way, the Spirit too comes to the aid of our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit itself intercedes with inexpressible groanings. – Romans 8:26 I believe in the Holy Spirit. This is not an assertion I make by rote on […]

Brace yourself, prepare to pray

By Michelle Francl-Donnay My heart is ready, O God, my heart is ready. I will sing, I will praise your name. – Ps. 57:8 It was a scene right out of a movie about a jewel heist. A black-clad figure creeping into a darkened museum gallery. One wrong move and suddenly the place is ablaze […]

Laughing at marvels of God

By Michelle Francl-Donnay The Lord said to Abraham: “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Shall I really bear a child, old as I am?’ Is anything too marvelous for the Lord to do? At the appointed time, about this time next year, I will return to you, and Sarah will have a son.” – Gen. […]

Don’t wait to visit a dying person

By Father Peter J. DalyParish Diary When someone is dying, drop what you are doing and go see that person. I learned that lesson a decade ago when a priest friend was dying in Kansas City. The nun at the nursing home where Monsignor was living called and said he wanted to see me. I […]

Meeting Christ in sorrow and joy

By Michelle Francl-Donnay He himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you!” In a state of alarm and fright, they thought they were seeing a ghost. But he said, “Why are you so agitated, and why are these doubts rising in your hearts?” – Lk. 24: 36b-38 “The weather bureau reported […]