Chesterton 2016 CDs

This year’s Rochester Chesterton Conference was a big success. For those who weren’t able to make it or those who want to revisit the topics that were discussed, we provide CD recordings of each speaker’s talk.

We are currently in the process of editing our recordings. We expect CDs to be available in late October.

Be sure and check this space for updates and ordering information.

Announcing Leviticus

The Way of Holiness and Right Worship:
Studies in the Book of Leviticus

Ten sessions

To many modern readers the Book of Leviticus can seem obscure and forbidding, yet its ancient laws lay out principles of holiness and right worship, foreshadowing the greater realities we have in Christ.  In rabbinic education, it was the first book taught to Jewish children; and for Christians it undergirds the great themes of the Epistle to the Hebrews and other key New Testament teachings on holiness. We want to open this book up so that you will be able to appreciate and apply what it truly teaches.

See the flyer for more details, including a schedule of lessons.

Begins the Week of September 13

in one of the following three locations:

– at St. John Fisher College –

Tuesday Evenings: 7:15 – 8:45 PM

in Murphy Hall across East Ave. (31F) from the main campus

 

– in Charlotte –

Wednesday Evenings: 7:15 – 8:45 PM at 294 Burley Rd. (off Lake Ave.)

(just north of Riverside Cemetery)

 

– at the St. Irenaeus Center in Rochester –

Thursday Mornings: 9:30  – 11:00 AM at 542 Blossom Rd.

 

Price: We suggest $5.00 a session, but only pay what you can afford.

College students attend free!

 

Journeyman 2016 – Old Testament Themes

OLD TESTAMENT THEMES

A new five-week study

Our summer journeyman programs are general survey courses, usually alternating material from the Old and New Testaments and Church history – or some major spiritual topic. In these sessions we attempt to give a convenient handle on material, which can serve as a useful foundation for further study.

This year we are returning to the Old Testament, focusing on major themes and going over certain reference materials, useful to all students of Scripture. Our goal is to provide a basic map of the Old Testament that will give the big picture of God’s plan and a key to its understanding.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches:

“the Old Testament is an indispensable part of Sacred Scripture. Its books are divinely inspired and retain a permanent value – for the Old Covenant has never been revoked.”

Yet many Christians find the Old Testament Scriptures difficult to navigate. It is easy to get lost in the details. Nevertheless, these ancient writings are foundational to the Christian faith. It is important that we should have a good grasp of their proper use.

Beginning on July 13th

Wednesday nights, 7:15–9:00 PM

at the St. Irenaeus Center, 542 Blossom Rd.

 

The Basic Map of Content

Session One – July 13:
     Overview of Types of Writings: Content & Canon

Session Two – July 20:
     Timeline of Biblical History

Major Themes

Session Three – July 27:
     God & Man; Creation, Revelation, & Covenant; End & Purpose (telos)

Session Four – August 3:
     Sin & Salvation; Morality & Worship (before the Holiness of God)

Session Five – August 10:
     Promise to a Chosen People; Kingdom & Christ (note on eschatology)

 

The suggested cost is $5.00 per session, but college students attend free. If money is an issue, as with all our classes, pay what you can or not at all.

The Journeyman Program is open to all interested adults. Some come simply to listen and learn, while others take a more active role in questioning and discussion. All are welcome.

(For more information call us at (585) 288-1618 or email us at mail@siministries.org)

You can download a printer-friendly version flyer here – make a few copies! Tell your friends!

Ladies’ Garden Tea Party

This upcoming July 17th, from 2:00–4:30 pm, our very own Fiat women’s fellowship will be hosting a tea party in the garden of the St. Irenaeus Center on Blossom Rd.

For more information, have a look at this beautiful invitation designed by Marie Brennan – and feel free to print out a few copies to give to any friends and family who might be interested.  We hope you’ll be able to attend!

P.S. Be sure to RSVP by July 13th – see invitation for contact info.

Faith & Witness – Spring 2016

Faith & Witness Spring 2016

By St. Irenaeus Ministries in Faith & Witness

16 pages, published 5/27/2016

Our Spring 2016 issue celebrates the life of Mother Angelica, tackles topics like politics and the culture wars, and features an interview with Fr. Mike Mayer on evangelization. Also, check out a piece on C.S. Lewis’s Screwtape Letters and a short excerpt from St. Francis de Sales’s Introduction to the Devout Life.

Announcing Esther

Announcing Our Spring Scripture Study:
            Lessons from the Book of Esther

In five sessions, beginning the week of April 12

So why should we study this curious book? And why now?

This small book has been the subject of controversy since ancient times. It nearly didn’t make it into the Jewish canon of the Old Testament. It is the one book of the Bible that never mentions the name of God at all (in the Hebrew, at least). Nevertheless, the providence of God operating in human affairs through faithful and courageous individuals is very much at the heart of this amazing book.

The Rabbis writing in the Talmud came to assert that there were two portions of Scripture that would always have an enduring relevance to mankind: the Books of Moses and the Book of Esther. That may seem an amazing assertion. Come find out why Esther should elicit such interest and praise.

Find out why this book is so timely for us Christians as we feel ourselves increasingly beleaguered in this secular society and in this election cycle. There are timely lessons for us in this often overlooked book.

 

►► Our study begins next week – April 12, 13, & 14

– at the usual times and in the usual locations:

 

at St. John Fisher College

Tuesday Evenings: 7:15 PM

in Murphy Hall across East Ave. (31F) from the main campus

in Charlotte

Wednesday Evenings: 7:15 PM at 294 Burley Rd. (off Lake Ave.)

at the St. Irenaeus Center in Rochester

Thursday Mornings: 9:30 AM at 542 Blossom Rd.

 

Price: We suggest $5.00 a session, but only pay what you can afford.

College students attend free.

Esther concerns the destiny and salvation of God’s people in a hostile world. It can yield a rich treasure to all who study it seriously. We will be covering the nine chapters of the canonical book and chapters 10–15 of the Deuterocanical additions.

Begins the Week of April 12th

 

As a side note: An interesting article appeared in the March issue of First Things entitled “The Miracle of Esther”, speaking of the unique relevance of this small book.

 

Lenten Pitfalls

Dear Friends,

Here we are at the threshold of another Lent, and I’d like to share a few thoughts on making this Lent more profitable. In the past we have put out a general review, “A Few Thoughts on Making a Good Lent”, which is available to anyone who asks us. Today, however, I would like to speak to a few common pitfalls that can undercut our Lenten efforts.

Some Pitfalls for the Lenten Pilgrim

Some of us may be tempted to think of Lent primarily in terms of fasting and Lenten rigors, all the more if we react to the general laxity of the age. But fasting and Lenten rigors are only one side of a larger task – that of bringing ourselves into line with the will of Christ. In his classic call to discipleship our Lord said, “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross [the instrumentality of his own death to self] and follow me.” This is a call to surrender all that we have and all that we are: body and soul, reason and emotions, appetites and imagination – everything. It is a process and, of course, it is a very personal thing, fitted to each individual. It also should involve a strong positive side of prayer, charity, and good works.

Nevertheless, we can say a few things about self-mortification. St. Paul has commanded us:

“Put to death [mortify] therefore what is earthly in you: fornication, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming.… But now put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and foul talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old nature with its practices and have put on the new nature, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.”

But he also warned “Let no one disqualify you, insisting on self-abasement,… puffed up without reason by his sensuous mind, and not holding fast to the Head [Christ].” Lent is not meant to be a competitive contest. We must be wary of all that leads to spiritual pride.

Also, anyone who undertakes to mortify himself will find that the human heart “is deceitful above all things, and desperately corrupt; who can understand it?” We often practice a type of self-deception. Desiring some thing, we often work toward it by indirection. We entertain the subtle temptation, which finally comes around to the same spiritually destructive end.

And oh how we make excuses, small evasions, concessions by degrees. We labor to cloak cherished vices and run after things that are distractions from the spiritual life.

Blessed John Henry Newman has warned us to be wary of vain curiosity, love of idle tales, curiosity about what does not concern us, especially curiosity about sin. The Apostle Paul tells us, “Brethren, do not be children in your thinking; be babes in evil, but in thinking be mature.” But how often do we read what we ought not to read, watch what we ought not to watch, listen to what we ought not to listen to, engage in foolish chatter or inappropriate humor? This Lent let us mortify our vain curiosity and the thirst for unprofitable knowledge. Let us curb the vain desire for a knowledge that does not profit. Knowledge is very well in its place, but we are often drawn away after a luxuriant overgrowth of leaves in which there is no fruit – no fruit to feed us. True religion feeds us. So let us understand that our chief duty is to reverence God and keep his commandments. Let us mortify the desire to chase after the glut of unprofitable knowledge and every vain curiosity. Today’s media offers us too much of this thing, and our souls never have sufficient time or ease to focus on what truly profits. Consider a fast from these distractions.

Door of Mercy Announced

We will soon begin a special short study, beginning the week after Thanksgiving. It will run only for the first two weeks of December. We offer it as an Advent meditation and in preparation for the Jubilee year. The great mercy of God in Christ is our subject. What a subject!

In our study we will examine the scriptural underpinnings of Pope Francis’ call for a Year of Mercy (which begins on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception on December 8th). Our objective will be to take this key biblical theme more deeply to heart and to offer practical steps to enter more fully into the spiritual potential of this Jubilee year.  As usual classes will be held in three locations: Tuesday nights at St. John Fisher college from 7:15 to 8:45, Wednesday nights in Charlotte from 7:15 to 8:45, and Thursday mornings at the St. Irenaeus Center from 9:30 to 11:00.

You should be getting a flyer on this in the mail. Please let us know if you don’t. And please consider joining us for this Advent meditation.

Studies in Deuteronomy Announced

We will soon begin our fall Scripture study, ten weeks in the Book of Deuteronomy. We begin the week after Labor Day.

Let me say that I am very excited about this particular offering and have long looked forward to the right time to present it. I know that many modern readers find this a difficult book to get into. But oh what treasures it holds when rightly read! It is one of the books most often quoted books by Christ – and with good reason. It was clearly meant for everyone and it is foundational to all biblical thought and our most basic ideas of a covenant relationship with God.

So I hope you will able to join us as we unlock some of the treasures of this keystone book.

Please check out this flyer for more information. I think that it has a particularly beautiful graphic.