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Devra Torres

The Power of Bad Example

May. 31 at 8:14pm

The things that have inspired me most are not what you might expect.

 Some of them are not very inspiring at all.  For example:

  • I once had a professor who went to daily Mass.  He’d sheepishly walk in late---sometimes extremely late—every single day, as far as I remember.  This didn’t make me want to emulate the lateness, but it impressed me no end: the humility to keep showing up, day after day, so imperfectly, so publicly.  (The chapel was too tiny for an inconspicuous entrance.)  Most people would have given up altogether.

  • Once, when I was a fairly new convert, I visited a friend who was a serious Catholic.  She had many small children (actually, two, but they seemed like seven). 
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Devra Torres

Q & A with Jacques Philippe

Nov. 29, 2013, at 11:01am

A recent gathering with Jacques Philippe ended with a question-and-answer session. One question especially caught my attention.  I’m certain this participant spoke for large numbers of us.  How, she wanted to know, are we supposed to reconcile “Accept your failures” with “Be perfect”?

This conundrum is a stumbling block to many—they’d like to take to heart the encouraging words of people like Fr. Jacques and Pope Francis, who insist that we can enjoy peace and an unshakeable interior freedom despite our weakness and moral failures.  But just how do you do that, without shrugging off divine and moral law--in this case, a clear directive, from the lips of Christ Himself, to "be perfect"?

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