My Sole Occupation is Love

Have you ever tried to read Ascent of Mt. Carmel or Dark Night of the Soul by St. John of the Cross? Did you end up frustrated or despondent? If so, then you missed the context in which detachment is possible. That context is the subject of our lesson, as we set the foundation for …

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Counting the Cost

What does it cost to follow God? How much do you have to give in order to reach union with Him? Can you seek both God and material goods? How about spiritual goods? St. John of the Cross shows us the way to union with God, the radical way that actually comes straight from the …

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Detachment from People

What does it mean to be detached from people? We often read saints talking about avoiding “particular friendships.” Does that apply to married people? Learn how the Evangelical Counsel of chastity relates to detachment from people. How can we be faithful to our vocation and yet be detached? Further Reading: Chastity and Charity in Marriage …

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Help for Those Living in the World

St. John of the Cross wrote Ascent of Mt. Carmel for Carmelite nuns. The nuns were able to practice radical detachment through their vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. Is there a way that lay people can also practice these Evangelical Counsels? Further Reading: The Spirit of Poverty (by Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen) …

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Custody of the Senses

Custody of the senses has become a forgotten practice. What is it? How can we practice custody of the eyes, ears, and other sensory organs? Further Reading: What is Custody of the Senses? (by Fr. John Bartunek) Discussion: Which sense do you tend to indulge the most? How can you start to detach?

Humility, Trust, and Surrender

Humility is an essential virtue for detachment, as St. John of the Cross indicates in the final stanza of his poem Ascent of Mt. Carmel. This lesson also highlights the connection between John’s teaching and that of St. Therese of Lisieux. Further Reading: St. Therese’s Astonishing Trust in God Discussion: When is it most difficult …

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