My Writings. My Thoughts.
Carmelite Conversations is a weekly program hosted by Mr. Mark Danis that centers on the teachings of Carmelite Spirituality and their application to our busy modern lives. It provides counsel on how to live the Carmelite call to combine contemplative prayer with service to the Church, while at the same time providing guidance on how to make progress in holiness. Tune in on Mondays at 7:00pm Eastern (6:00pm Central) and call in with your questions.
In this second program on the two part series of Blessed Mary of Jesus Crucified, Mark and Frances explore in even greater detail what it is that makes this Carmelite such a wonderful model of holiness. In addition, they discuss the terribly important role she has played, is playing and can play in the future of Christian and Muslim relations, especially in the Middle East. Blessed Mary of Jesus’ life is a model of obedience, prayer, sacrifice and even suffering; but in that context, and because of her own unique background, she can serve as a powerful intercessor for the problems currently facing the Middle East and the world. Indeed, she was identified as far back as 1934 as the Patron for an organization, sanctioned by the Church, and dedicated to praying for relationships between Muslims and Christians. Listen and hear this remarkable story, and then join us in praying for peace.
Sometimes it happens that the life of a particular Saint is lesser known for a time, only so that when the Church finally acknowledges them, their life can have the full impact that God intended. Such is likely the case with a Carmelite Blessed name Mary of Jesus Crucified, whose cause for Canonization is currently being considered. There are many things about Mariam Baouardy’s that are very instructive for us as Christians. In this first of a two part series, Mark and Frances explore the remarkable life of this lesser known Blessed from Carmel. She was blessed with many spiritual graces, including the stigmata of Christ, the gift of levitation, ecstasies, the ability to read hearts, transverberation of the heart among others. Listen to the incredible story of her life, and then tune in to the following program to hear the real significance of her cause for canonization.
There is not question that the institution of the Family is under more pressure and more assault in these times then at any other time in history. But we are not without our defenses. In this lively, interactive discussion on how families can work to live out their Christian call, and also protect themselves from the temptations of our modern society, Mark and Frances are joined by Joshua and Holli Danis, Mark’s son and daughter-in-law, to discuss practical ways families can help their children grow in their faith. In addition, they rely on the example set by the parents of St. Therese of Lisieux, Carmelite and Doctor of the Church. The Martin family that Therese grew up in was responsible for five vocations to the Church at the end of the 19th Century and beginning of the 20th. All four of Therese’s sisters entered religious life, and this conversation will identify some of the important ways the Martin parents helped create an environment that allowed their children to grow in holiness.
It is always interesting and spiritually rewarding to be introduced to other Carmelite Saints, Blesseds and Venerables. This week Mark and Frances reintroduce the Venerable Dominic of Jesus and Mary. Venerable Dominic lived a very active life within the Order, withing the Church and in helping to battle some of the most significant military and political issues in his time. He was known and hailed by Popes and Kings for his ability to mediate difficult situations, and also for his ability to rally men to a cause. And, despite his busy schedule and extensive traveling, he never allowed it to interrupt his very assiduous prayer life. Indeed, he was the author of a couple of very important works on spiritual direction and the stages of development in the spiritual life.
Another important feast associated with the Order of Carmel, and dedicated to Our Blessed Mother, is the Feast of Our Lady, Mother of Divine Grace. This week Mark and Frances discuss the brief history of this important Feast, and the unique role that Our Blessed Mother plays in dispensing grace to the Church. They also discuss a very unique image of Our Blessed Mother known as the Lady of the Bowed Head. This image has its own unique story, which they discuss, and they also touch on an important Carmelite Venerable who is directly associated with this image. Again, for anyone who wishes to learn more about the Blessed Mother’s role as dispenser of grace, this is an important conversation.