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Posted November 12, 2014

Book: Moments of the Day
Author: Christopher S. Collins, S.J.
Ave Maria Press. Notre Dame, IN. 2014. Pp. 141

An Excerpt from the Jacket:

Retreat master Christopher Collins, S.J., introduces a powerful approach to both the Sacred Heart devotion and classic Ignatian spirituality. Readers are guided through three simple yet profound prayer habits that can fit into any schedule: morning offering, evening reflection, and pondering the gift of the Eucharist throughout the day.

An Excerpt from the Book:

As modest a prayer effort as is the Examen, it's surprisingly fruitful. Even if all you can do is five or ten minutes at the end of a day, [to go back over the day in our mind] try it and see what happens. If you're like me, you'll be amazed at how rich the day becomes when you're looking back on it with the Lord.

The Examen is a good antidote to our tendency to fall into ruts and feel that all our days are the same. Before an Examen, we can have a day that seems just a blur of activity and undistinguished encounters. When I apply the gift of memory to the day, through the Examen, the day becomes sharper, clearer, and much more meaningful. Even when I take these few moments at the end of the day to do nothing more than remember, I am usually amazed by how much actually did happen, how rich the day actually was. Without this act of remembering, all the little moments of beauty, joy, fun, and interesting things can all just fall off the radar because we were so focused on moving on to the next thing.

So what are we looking for [in the Examen]? We do not need to look at every detail of the day. What is important is what catches our attention affectively, emotionally. What things happened that I feel in my gut? What movements in your heart did you experience? These movements of the spirit are the most important things to attend to. The Holy Spirit brings to mind those things in our day that are spiritually important. The movements indicate where the action is. They reveal what is important for our relationships with God, for our ongoing conversion, and therefore ultimately for our happiness, so we can live life to the fullest, as Jesus wants us to do.

Table of Contents:

1. The Morning Offering
The morning offering
For the salvation of the world

2. The Examen
The power of remembering
Who are you talking to?
Discernment of Spirits

3. Living the Eucharist
The Offertory
The Sacrifice
Communion and mission

The three moments: a concise guide