Your Faith

The 5 thresholds of conversion

In the mid-1990s, a campus minister named Doug Schaupp was struggling with how to awaken faith in students. He and his ministry team at UCLA realized that “students weren’t responding in the same ways they had before. Sharing the truth of Jesus’ Gospel no longer moved people. Our evangelistic labors resonated less, and had less fruit.” 1

During the 1997-1998 school year, 37 students went through conversion experiences. Schaupp’s team responded by doing something unusual. They asked these students to describe their spiritual journeys.

GO Evangelize: Richard’s witness brings friends back to church

Prayer In his letter to the Philippians, St. Paul says, “Have among yourselves the same attitude that is also yours in Christ Jesus who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped. Rather, he emptied himself.” (Phil 2:5-7) Why? To save us. Paul encourages us to imitate our Lord. When there’s someone we wish to pray for, we have to be able to go for broke. Oftentimes that includes prayer, fasting and penance.

How can I ‘do’ Lent better?

Dear Fr. Joe: Every year, Lent happens and I start off really hoping to make something of it. My intentions are the best, but it always seems like, the next thing I know, it's Easter and I’ve missed it. Can you help me do better this year?

I believe I can help you! Let’s start with an important point: You are struggling with something that I think most people do – the inability to “get it right," no matter how good our intentions or plans. What do we do about that?

Does God exist?

Does God exist? For Catholics, the answer to this question is ultimately a matter of faith. However, not everyone in the world shares this faith. So how are believers to argue for the existence of God when entering into dialogue with non-believers? A good place to begin is by looking back to a few of the more famous arguments put forward in favor of the existence of God. You will notice that each attempts to appeal to human reason, an approach that the Church approves of for it offers the possibility of encountering a starting point for discussion with non-believers.

GROW as a disciple of Jesus: Listen for God's whisper each day

“Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.” (1 Sm 3:10)

My mom used to say, “God gave us two ears and one mouth so we could listen twice as much as we talk.” The older I get, the more I realize I need to put her wise words into practice. I’m often guilty of half listening and double-talking, and that bad habit even spills into my relationship with God, the Father. When I get tangled up in my plans or worries, my prayer is more like, “Listen, Lord, your servant is speaking,” instead of the other way around.

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