Tag Archives: Jamaica

You Want a Sign


    In this Wednesday’s Gospel (Lk 11: 29-32) our Lord says :

    ” This generation is an evil generation; it seeks a sign, but no sign will be given it, except the sign of Jonah. Just as Jonah became a sign to the Ninevites, so will the Son of Man be to this generation.”

    Our Lord seems so frustrated and annoyed with the people of His time ( and I’m sure with us too!) . Like them we want easy fixes to so many sufferings, complications, and problems that plague our personal lives and our society. ” God, please manifest Your great power and heal our world!”

    Our Lord seems to imply that the solutions begin with our changes of heart, where, like the people of Nineveh, we listen to God’s word, repent, and become servants of God’s will which is always our welfare and happiness.

    But we want a ” great sign” to startle us out of our stupor. Our Lord seems to say that His own death and resurrection is that sign.

    Only 2 weeks ago we remembered the anniversary of the passing of my wonderful friend, Fr Owen Lally,CP, the leader of our prayer group. His spirit still lives in us. Our group still stands strong. Through Fr Owen’s guidance we always strove to be ” the sign of Jonah”. Fr Owen wrote:

    ” Our Resurrection with the Lord is the sign of Jonah. Our old self transformed by grace into our true self IS our resurrection. Our entire life’s journey has as it’s goal the renewal of the old man of sin into the new man of grace in Christ. Individually this is wonderful to see, but to bring several brothers and sisters into unity is the true icon of the risen Lord.

    Mutual Indwelling is the result of becoming human together. The sign of Jonah was the survival of our Lord’s being in the belly of the earth. We are in the belly of the whale by our baptism and deep immersion into the water. Whoever is in Christ is a new creation. ‘ Whenever two or three are gathered together in my name I am there.’ ‘ This is the Sign by which all shall know that I have come forth from God, that you love one another.’ The primary way to make new Christians and to get vocations is to love one another and become one in community.”

    The Passionist Community has graciously allowed our Prayer Group (Fr Owen’s Prayer Group) to meet on Sundays, after mass, at the Passionist Monastery in Jamaica, NY. Sometimes when I walk into that Monastery Chapel in the middle of our prayer meeting, I am struck by the awesome power of 30 to 40 people, who have given themselves fully to song and praise, to love and support for one another.  In this place the Spirit of the Risen Jesus is alive in all His Glory, a sign to the world that Love is supreme, that there is hope, that our Lord reigns!  In a way we feel like God’s prophets. We are compelled to walk through our own Nineveh and proclaim the Good News of the Kingdom!

Orlando M. Hernández

The Angels are Coming!


I saw them in  church this morning, hovering over the people getting ready for Mass.

The angels. All colors, carrying all kinds of things. It looks like the world above is coming.. All we have to do is look up, and then look at the Crib.

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Compasssion Magazine

The current issue of COMPASSION MAGAZINE, a publication of St. Paul of the Cross Province, is online. It began in print, but like most print magazines today COMPASSION is making a transition to the Internet. So many newspapers and magazines are negotiating the tricky road of change in the way we communicate, and I think COMPASSION is doing as well as any of them. If you take a look at it, I’m sure you’ll agree that its newly designed online face is beautifully done.

This issue, entitled Listening, has stories about the ministries of various members of our community. The first article is about  some priests from our Pittsburgh community who listen to those who come to our monastery on top of a hill overlooking that city. It’s a wonderful reminder of the spiritual direction offered by many of our members that goes unnoticed, for the most part.

There’s an article on Pope Benedict’s latest encyclical, which I wrote.

Listening to Young Catholics is a perceptive look at the young from Fr. Robin Ryan, CP, who leads a program for young Catholics at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago.

A young Passionist volunteer tells about her experiences in Jamaica, WI. It’s a charming story of interaction between two people of different cultures and ages.

Fr. Paul Zilonka, a former missionary in Jamaica and editor of COMPASSION, talks about some of his friends who once ministered there. They’re some of my friends too. One of them is at death’s door now, so please pray for him.

There’s more to read there too.