Jesuit retreat center high on the bluffs of the Mississippi River in St. Louis, MO.  Since 1922, thousands of people from around the world make annual three-day silent, guided retreats here to relax, reconnect with God and strengthen their spirituality.  A true gem in the Midwest!  Call 314-416-6400 or 1-800-643-1003.  Email reservations@whretreat.org  7400 Christopher Rd.  St. Louis, MO 63129

Both men's and women's retreats are offered as well as recovery retreats.

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Weekend Reflections for 8/29/14

Take up your cross

by Fr. Ralph Huse, S.J.


"Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.'" (Mt 16:24-25)


Life will always bring us our share of crosses, mostly small and annoying, some heavier and challenging. It's part of being human. Spiritual authors point out that pain is inevitable but suffering is optional. It depends on our attitude about the pain. How much power do we give it?


Fr. Ed Dowling, S.J., (spiritual advisor to Bill Wilson, co-founder of AA) wrote a wonderful little article entitled "How to Enjoy Being Miserable." He points out that we can allow our crosses to crush us or we can try to accept and ignore them or we can learn to enjoy them. He cautions that to enjoy them a person must be either crazy or in love. Jesus faced His sufferings and embraced His cross because He is in love with each of us. A spouse will sacrifice for his or her partner out of love; parents will give up much for love of their children.  Fr. Ed noted that if we try to help our mother move a piece of furniture, we'll take the heavier end and that a poor mother will shiver through a cold night so that her child can have the little blanket.


St. Paul urges us to embrace our crosses so that we can "fill up those things that are lacking in the sufferings of Christ." As Fr. Ed concludes, "Even if we could outdo Christ in generosity, what better use could we make of the hundred daily little inconveniences than to use them to buy stock in Christ's venture of Gethsemane and Calvary?" Sounds like a pretty good investment to me!