“When God says that he has a plan and purpose for our lives, he really means it. God is not trying to hide that purpose from us. God wants us to discover our purpose, or our divine mission – to enter it and to walk in that divine mission.” That’s the message from Deacon Larry Oney, a permanent deacon in the Archdiocese of New Orleans.
Dear Fr. Joe: I feel like I’m a pretty happy person – why do I need a relationship with Jesus?
I often find it helpful to start by agreeing on our terms, so let’s start by looking at the word “happy.”
For Christians, a full understanding of the New Testament is impossible without seeing it as the fulfillment of the Old Testament. Likewise, a full understanding of the Old Testament depends on our reading it as a preparation for the work of Christ in the New Testament. Of course, we might ask, “What major Old Testament prophecies did Jesus actually fulfill?”
The birth of a king
The lives of holy men and women witness that with God, we must always expect the unexpected – we must be soft clay in the hands of the Lord, confidently trusting in the goodness of his will. The life of St. Peter Claver is no exception.
Peter Claver was born in Catalonia, Spain in the year 1581. At the age of 20, he entered the Jesuit novitiate and shortly after began to study philosophy. Then something unexpected happened.
For most of us, happiness means to feel good. In the ancient world, however, it meant to be good.
“Sometimes we can imagine happiness will come when were done with our work or the challenge,” says Father Mike Schmitz of the Diocese of Duluth, Minn., and a speaker at the upcoming Made for Happiness Assembly. “What we recognize is we are rarely happier than when we are in the midst of a noble pursuit. To find out what God’s plan is for one’s life and to pursue it in the midst of trials, dangers and setbacks is real happiness.”