Meditations Archive

Archives of ITV's magazine meditations.

From the Domus Santa Marta: The Words of Pope Francis

pentecoste botticelli ok

Pope Francis made an important point during his Morning Meditation on May 9 when he emphasized the unique impact of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the One who makes the difference, who sets souls on fire and breathes life into the actions of the Christian. Often the Holy Spirit is either forgotten or […]

Share Button

Urbi et Orbi Section: Eastern Tradition, Peter and Paul


Saints Peter and Paul are considered pillars of the Orthodox Church, and thus share a special feast day which is celebrated on June 29.  This feast is preceded by one of the main periods of fasting in the liturgical calendar, a time of fasting that is unique to the Orthodox calendar.  It is called the […]

Share Button

Urbi et Orbi: Spirituality, The Orthodox Saints Speak

gregory palamas

We are made up of a soul and body, and both soul and body consist of many members. For the soul too has members after a fashion: those parts of it concerned with growth, desiring, anger and reason. Therefore, true fasting must extend to every part, cleansing and healing them all. Fasting, brethren, gently and […]

Share Button

Urbi et Orbi Section: News from the East


Endangered Jesus Tomb Unites Rival Catholic, Orthodox Churches in $3.4 Million Restoration Project Three Christian traditions recently put aside their long-standing theological differences and agreed to partner to save the endangered holy place where Jesus was crucified, buried, and resurrected in Jerusalem. Members of the Greek Orthodox, Roman Catholic, and the Armenian Orthodox Churches have […]

Share Button

Urbi et Orbi Section: The Liturgical Year


Why is the Great Pascha on a Different Date than Easter? This year the Orthodox Church celebrated the Great Pascha, their Easter, on May 1, several weeks after the rest of the Christian world celebrated Easter. This feast is preceded by a Holy Week similar to the Catholic one, and has the same meaning and […]

Share Button

Urbi et Orbi Section: Spirituality, The Orthodox Saints Speak

madonna icona Icone russe Museo Tretyakov

Reflecting on Mary’s Blessedness through the Annunciation Thou knowest, O Mary, things kept hid from the patriarchs and prophets. Thou hast learned, O virgin, things which were kept concealed till now from the angels. Thou hast heard, O purest one, things of which even the choir of inspired men was never deemed worthy. Moses, and […]

Share Button

Urbi et Orbi Section: The Message of the Icon

decapitation SAN GIOVANNI-29

The Third Finding of the Head of John the Baptist Along with the lance of Longinus, the head of John the Baptist has a history worthy of an Indiana Jones saga. The Eastern Churches also celebrate the first and second findings in separate feasts. The feasts are celebrated liturgically, of course, but also with the […]

Share Button

Spirituality: The Orthodox Saints Speak

__St Antonio and St Paolo di Tebe

The Desert Fathers Speak on Joy, Love and the Mercy of God If we keep remembering the wrongs which men have done us, we destroy the power of the remembrance of God… —Abba Macarius the Great On Joy Abba Syncletica said, “In the beginning there are a great many battles and a good deal of […]

Share Button

The Message of the Icon

emmaus internet Robert Z¸nd, 1827-1909

The Road to Emmaus Whatever purpose the two disciples had in journeying to Emmaus, certainly their original plans were entirely disrupted by the company of the mysterious teacher who broke open for them the Scriptural prophecies of the Messiah. Just as Mary Magdalen mistook the Risen Lord for a gardener, so too did Luke and […]

Share Button

The Ineffable Majesty of Holy Communion

crocefissio lorenzo monaco

A reflection on the Eucharist, and on the solemnity of our devotion when receiving Holy Communion, by a Bishop from Kazakhstan Bishop Athanasius Schneider of Astana, Kazakhstan, has for some years been making a name for himself as one of the staunchest defenders in the world of the traditional Catholic faith. In this essay, he […]

Share Button

The Words of Pope Francis: “Love’s Second Name”


“Mercy is God’s distinctive mark,” says Fr. John Saward, the formerly Anglican, now Catholic priest in England: it is His goodness “coming to the aid of our misery, especially the misery of sin.” But, as Pope Francis explains in this beautiful talk, his first catechesis on mercy, this attribute of God is not incidental to […]

Share Button

Reflecting on the “Widow” Whose Sole Hope Is the Lord


Pope Francis gave an eloquent homily at his morning Mass in the chapel of the Domus Santa Marta on November 23, the Feast of Pope St. Clement I. Clement was a disciple of St. Peter and was Pope from 92 to 99 A.D. (the exact years are not fully certain). He was considered by many […]

Share Button


ricostruzione Tempio di Neemia,  Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld, 1847

“Nostalgia” for God can lead us to the joy of rediscovering Him In his morning homily at Domus Santa Marta on October 1, the feast day of St. Therese of Lisieux — so important in the spiritual life of Jorge Mario Bergoglio — Pope Francis spoke of two key issues for the life of each […]

Share Button

From the Domus Santa Marta: The Words of Pope Francis

The Pope in Domus Santa Marta.

With this issue we are beginning a new “rubrica” (section) of the magazine, named “From the Domus Santa Marta.” I have chosen the passages from Pope Francis’ morning homilies which struck me most deeply, and helped deepen my own faith. In these homilies, he seems to be and to speak as a parish priest with his parishioners. […]

Share Button

Reflection on the Akathist Hymn


Christmas Day For Christmas Day, we offer a reflection on the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, based on the Akathist Hymn on that theme. The Akathist Hymn is one of the most well-loved services of devotion in the Eastern Churches. Pious tradition states that the original Akathist of Our Lady was composed in the […]

Share Button

St. Edmund of Abingdon (November 16)

“There are four planes or fields in which God is reflected. Two within, reason and revelation, or the light of nature in the intelligence, and the illumination of the Holy Spirit elevating the intelligence by a supernatural light. Two also without, creation and the Church, or in other words, the world of nature, which is the first creation whereon the traces and outlines of God’s being, presence, and image are inscribed in characters of goodness, wisdom, and power; and the second creation, or the mystical Body of the Incarnate Word, in which the image of the invisible God is revealed in the face of Jesus Christ.”

Edmund Rich was born in Abingdon on November 20, the feast of St. Edmund, the King of East Anglia, about the year 1175. He was the son of a local merchant named Edward or Reynold Rich. Of his three brothers, Robert supposedly wrote one of his biographies. His two sisters, Margaret and Alice, became prioresses […]

Share Button

Meditation – May 2013

This feast, which providentially falls on the same day as that of Our Lady of Fatima, was started by St. Peter Julian Eymard (1811-1868) of France, who had a strong devotion to the Holy Eucharist and to Our Lady and began his priestly life in the Society of Mary. His heart burned with the desire […]

Share Button

Easter Sunday 2013

According  to Orthodox tradition, Jesus Christ was crucified, died and descended into Hades. Then he rose from the dead. The Sunday of Myrrh-bearing Women falls on the second Sunday following Pascha. The myrrh-bearers had brought funeral spices and ointments to finish committing Christ’s body to the grave. They were the first to see the empty tomb and were instructed by the Risen Lord to bring the joyful news to the apostles. Sts. Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus are also commemorated on this day.

For Easter Sunday, we offer a reflection on the Empty Tomb of Our Lord Jesus Christ, based on the Akathist Hymn on that theme. The Ak­athist Hymn is one of the most well-loved services of devotion in the Eastern Churches. Although there is some debate concerning the particulars of its authorship, many scholars agree with […]

Share Button

Meditation – December 2012

In the early part of the Middle Ages the pious custom began of a novena of preparation before Christmas, but only in Spain and France. The Theatine Father Piscara Castaldo, in a book approved in 1525 by the author’s Father General, gives complete directions for the celebration of the Christmas Novena with Exposition of the […]

Share Button

Meditation – November 2012

November 2 and indeed the whole of November focus on the Holy Souls. There are actually two names for the day: “All Souls’ Day” and “The Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed.” In around 998 A.D., All Souls’ Day was formally fixed on November 2 by St. Odilo, Ab­bot of Cluny; the influence of the […]

Share Button