Making Disciples Today: Blog

The Making Disciples Today Blog has reflections to help you grow in your journey of missionary discipleship, reviews on recommended Catholic evangelization resources, and practical insight on how to evangelize in your daily life. 

The Stations of the Cross refers to the depiction of the final hours (or Passion) of Jesus, and the devotion commemorating the Passion.  

All Catholic parishes have depictions of Christ’s Passion and death called the Stations of the Cross, The Way of the Cross or Via Dolorosa (way of suffering) In many churches, the Stations of the Cross are depicted in stained-glass windows, but other media are used as well, including paintings and stone or wood carvings and sculptures.  Often on Friday evenings during Lent, you can find a parish that’s open with Catholics meditating and saying prayers in unison before each of the 14 stations.

The Stations of the Cross is a Lenten devotion that offers witness to Jesus’ Passion and Death. Often, the Stations of the Cross is an action prayer. Catholics walk to the fourteen stations of the Way of the Cross and stop to pray at each one.  At each station we use our senses and our imagination to reflect prayerfully upon Jesus’ suffering, Death, and Resurrection, and to simply experience the visual images to reflect on Christ’s love for us.

We've listed the best Way of the Cross prayer resources for...

    • busy adults who may not be able to join your parish Stations of the Cross prayer time.

In a way, Kristin Bird was a little surprised to find herself standing in a classroom at Mary Mother of the Church Pastoral Center on Saturday, Oct. 22, offering a breakout session entitled “From Encounter to Invitation” as part of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee’s Eucharistic Revival Preparation Day.

Bird, who runs Burning Hearts Disciples in Oshkosh, spent 15 years as a youth minister, DRE and confirmation director before starting her organization eight years ago.

“If you would have told me eight years ago that dioceses and parishes were going to want to re-think so much of what we do as a Church, I probably would have laughed at you, and said there’s no way,” Bird said.

During her time working in the Church, she has seen it use many buzzwords and programs to try to spread its message.

“I found myself thinking revival was kind of a pipe dream,” Bird said. “It is fantastic to see the Church at a place where we’re not only ready for it, but we’re also planning for it, preparing for it and intentionally looking at how we can bring about revival for our parishes and for our people.”

Ultimately, the goal of the Eucharistic Revival is evangelizing.

In this episode of the Transforming Parishes, Transforming Lives podcast, we explore the reality of conflict within parish life and discuss ways to navigate through it and strategies for creating an environment for healthy, instructive conflict.

Discernment is the process of finding God’s will in our lives. It is the process of listening for and responding to God’s call. It is the process of discovering one’s vocation. We get ourselves into trouble, however, when we imagine that God’s will is “out there” and apart from us.

We run into problems when we see our vocation as some kind of riddle that we have to decipher or some secret message that we have to decode. Such an approach transforms God’s plan into a set of arbitrary instructions -- directions for life that we cannot seem to find. Under such a view, discernment becomes scary. We don’t know what God wants. And so we search frantically for some sign telling us what to do. Or we just give up.

Discernment is difficult, but it is not difficult because it is a puzzle that we can’t figure out. It is difficult because it involves the coming together of two infinite mysteries: God and me. This realization helps us to see that whenever we learn something true about God, we learn something true about ourselves. And whenever we learn something true about ourselves, we learn something true of God.