January 20, 2019

Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

St. Ignatius of Loyola is best known for founding the Society of Jesus, better known as the Jesuits.  He is also known for encouraging a very popular prayer practice called the Examen Prayer.  This prayer practice is done by the Jesuits every day before they go to bed, because it allows them to view each day as a gift from God and to give thanks for it.  The Examen prayer is very easy to learn and it is broken up into 5 different parts:  becoming aware of God’s presence, looking over our day with gratitude to God, paying attention to the emotions we experience as we do this, choosing one area of our day and praying with it, and finally to look forward to tomorrow. 

We begin this prayer by placing ourselves in God’s presence.  What this means is to quietly pray asking God to fill us with the Holy Spirit and to open our hearts to experience him in this moment.  Once we have placed ourselves in God’s presence, we then look at our day with gratitude for all that God has given to us.  This gratitude can be anything: it can be that we woke up this morning, that we have a roof over our heads, that we have family and friends who care for us or even being thankful for a good conversation we had.  It is during this second step of prayer that we then ask ourselves: What did I receive from these people that I encountered today? What did I give to them?       

The third step invites us to pay attention to our emotions.  We can ask ourselves: what feelings were going on through these different encounters that we had with others and ourselves when we look back on the day?  It is during this time that we can then turn to God and ask him to help us through these emotions, in order to see where his presence is in each of those feelings. 

St Ignatius says that in the fourth step we are invited to pray asking God to point us towards one aspect of our day that he thinks is important for us to remember.  Maybe we argued with our spouse, our children, or maybe a coworker or friend, and God is inviting us to pray for them and to apologize to them.  Or we may have received some good news that day and it becomes an opportunity for us to give thanks to God for that gift.  Whatever it may be whether good or bad, God is inviting us to remember what happened and to allow for a prayer to be offered for it. 

Our final step in this prayer is to pray to God for his help the next day.  It becomes a way for us to take the fruits of our prayer and to share them with others in our daily lives.  When we do this, we are then able to share the love which we have received from God with them.  As we pray this Examen prayer, we are then able to see that God is always working in our lives.  That he is always there, even in the little moments of our day, walking beside us and helping us to grow as his sons and daughters.

Father Joseph Boykow


St. Philip’s Jubilee History Documentary
The Greater Works Film about the history of St. Philip the Apostle Parish, created by Fr. Matt, will be on sale at the Molloy Center.
Cost of DVD is $15 and Blu-Ray is $20.



Journey with Us!
Our next RCIA session is Monday, January 28thfrom 7:00-8:30 pm in the Russo Room. We will be discussing Church History with Fr. Matt.  All are welcome! For more information about RCIA, please call Donna Scancarella at 973-779-6200.

To read complete bulletin click here