Sparks of Mercy

Civility and Citizens of the Kingdom of God

By Chris Sparks

Put no trust in princes,

in children of Adam powerless to save.

Who breathing his last, returns to the earth;

that day all his planning comes to nothing (Ps 146:3-4).

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has launched their “Civilize It: Dignity Beyond the Debate” campaign this month, “a year-long initiative that invites Catholics to model civility, love for neighbor, and respectful dialogue” in this forthcoming election year.

Living Mercy in November

Photo by Erik-Jan Leusink on Unsplash

By Chris Sparks

I love November.

I mean, clearly I’m biased — I was born in November, on Thanksgiving Day, as a matter of fact. So I have many happy memories of birthday parties and family Thanksgivings, of turkey and stuffing and presents.

But I would argue that November is a blessed month for everyone. It’s the culmination of harvest time, after all, a time for grain to have been scythed and gathered in, for fruit to be canned, produce pickled, barns and cellars packed full, and for all to take stock of their preparations for winter.

You Got a Friend in Purgatory

By Chris Sparks

Lord of the Rings is one of the most useful guides to the spiritual life out there, and one that's helpful to consider as we enter November, the month the Church dedicates to the Holy Souls in Purgatory.

Don’t believe me? Let’s take a look at one key act in the books, one of the greatest actions we can take in the spiritual life: rustling up some allies.

Pray, for Mercy's Sake

By Chris Sparks

One of my earliest memories is lying in my bed at night being led in bedtime prayers by my mom. She would show me how to make the Sign of the Cross, talk me through the Our Father, Hail Mary, and Glory Be, and then give me a kiss and say good night.


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