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Fr. Rodney Kissinger, S.J. who is 103 years young, has been a Jesuit for over 76 years and a priest for over 65 years. His seasoned spirituality is the fruit of more than 60 years of making and giving the Spiritual Exercises in all of its formats to priests, religious and laity. It is presented not in the jargon of academia but in a language that everyone can understand. He is neither “old breed” nor “new breed,” he is just “half breed.” Having studied both the old theology and the new theology he is convinced that the continuity is so great that you cannot understand the new until you have mastered the old.

This week's featured reading is from Fr. Rodney's booklet, Liturgy of the Heart, Chapter 9, Prayer of Suffering

Now we will consider one of the most powerful and the most effective forms of prayer, the prayer of suffering. Yes, the prayer of suffering.

The opportunity for this form of prayer comes to everyone sooner or later. Suffering is an inevitable fact of human life. We enter the world in the pain of another and the leave the world in our own pain. And in between the entrance and the exit there is more of the same.

When it comes do not look for any special kind of prayer. Do not try to run away. Just sit and accept it. Accept it totally in the depth of your being. You do not have to say anything or do anything. God knows your mind, your heart, your feeling, your pain. Do not think that you are wasting time and should be doing something worthwhile. Nothing is more worthwhile than this. This is the will of God for me right now.

We think that we are the architects of our sanctity. We think we form ourselves but it is life that forms us. Suffering takes off chips that we would never attack. The Lord told Jeremiah one day to go down to the potter’s house and there I will give you a message. There was the potter working at the wheel molding the clay. And the Lord said, “Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand.” (Jer. 18:6)

Suffering is creative; it will tear away your mask, knock you off your pedestal, shatter your pride, and make you meek and humble of heart. It will give you a new and greater capacity for love, compassion, and understanding. Some of the most beautiful people I have known are people who have suffered greatly.

Suffering is a time of growth, maturity and purification. It frees us from addiction to religious experience, consolations, and dependence on certain prayers and pious practices. It makes us appreciate so many wonderful things we have taken for granted. And it gives us intimations of mortality. And as the years go on these intimations of mortality become more frequent and much more convincing. And we realize that we do not have here a lasting city.

Suffering is a blessing. You will notice that in all of the testimonies, the witnesses that people give that it all started with a crisis, when they had reached the end of their capacity. They felt that they couldn’t go on. But they did go on through the power beyond their limits. The Prodigal Son did not come to his senses until he found himself sitting in a pig sty, far from home, friendless, penniless and hungry. Then he had that wonderful reception by his father. CLICK HERE for the entire chapter.

 Fr. Rodney now has three Kindle EBooks available

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God's Sense of Humor and Sixty Other Homilies is a collection of homilies that have been delivered by Fr. Rodney Kissinger, S.J. over the years to address many of the issues faced by Christians in contemporary society. This document is available as a Kindle EBook that can be purchased at the Kindle store for $2.99.

CLICK HERE to purchase the EBook at the Amazon Kindle Store









Fr. Rodney has spent most of his priestly life giving the Spiritual Exercises, as a preached retreat, a guided retreat, the personally directed retreat, the 19th annotation retreat and the email retreat. The Joy of the Spiritual Exercises is the fruit of these retreats condensed into a single EBook. As Fr. Rodney states, "Pope Francis exhorts us to proclaim “The Joy of the Gospel.” The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius is a proclamation of the joy of the Gospel." This document is available as a Kindle EBook that can be purchased at the Kindle store for $2.99.

CLICK HERE to purchase the EBook at the Amazon Kindle Store








A compilation of many of his booklets in a single document named Divine Simplicity. This document is available as a Kindle EBook that can be purchased at the Kindle store for $2.99.

CLICK HERE to purchase the EBook at the Amazon Kindle Store










© 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 Fr Rodney Kissinger, S.J. all rights reserved