Eve’s Wishes for Christmas


It is early morning on Christmas eve, and for me as I am sure, for many, there is still so much to do. Let us not forget the reason for all our activity.


Merry Christmas to you all. Thank you for your support over this past year. May the New Year that awaits us be another of divine unfolding as we walk together, as faithful companions.

Day 9 of #31DaysWithIggy


Took #Iggy out into the #garden to get some #sun. It’s a beautiful day and neighbourhood #birds and #children alike broke out into silly #song, with the latter singing #handelsmessiah (no joke). Little did they know they were #praisingGod.

In celebration of Ignatian Spirituality, and to mark the feast of St Ignatius of Loyola (31 July), I have taken on the challenge of posting a picture a day that speaks to me of the lessons learned from all things ‘Ignatian’; including ‘finding God in all things.’ Here it is, as posted on Instagram (@fcjAustralia).

Video: I Love You and You are Mine

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Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of a time of solemnity in Lent where the focus is on repentance.

For your prayer and reflection, I offer you a chance to listen to the song,  “You Are Mine”, by David Haas. I invite you to focus on the words:

I love you and you are mine.

Recall a relationship where you felt loved. Savour what it is like to feel such intimacy. Know that in that experience, God continually calls you by name, and calls you into union with him.

The video can be found here, with lyrics and contemplative visuals, from YouTube.

Four Voices, One Message

Words do not convey the gratitude and joy I feel for having stumbled upon this jewel-of-an-example of what good humanity can achieve. If you watch one video today, make it this one.


Beyond (L-R): Dechen Shak-Dagsay, Tina Turner, Regula Curti and Sawani Shende-Sathaye.

“Beyond” is a compilation of song and prayer featuring four different voices that convey one shared universal truth.

The opening lines say:

A compassionate heart takes the fear away and gives inner strength. It is vital to educate the heart beyond yourself. The true meaning of life is love. By giving, you find true happiness.

You can watch the video here through SBS.

One Way to Pray: Articulating Desire

Some unwelcome anxiety visited me recently. I grew restless, bothered and even fearful. But then I recalled a song and let it play, and soon this prayer became my prayer and the anxiety fleeted.

What I learnt here is that one way of praying is by being open and availing in oneself, space for the Spirit to work. Furthermore, this doesn’t always require words or gestures, merely presence and sincere desire.

God will take care of the rest.


This is my desire:
To honour you.

In my waking at first light.

Through each task before me,
Whether a challenge or easy.

In every word and thought
Every blessing and every greeting
In every grit and every grace

No matter the score
In victories or loss
In worry or doubt
In confidence or contentment

Until the cloak of night
At the end of the day.

This is my desire:
To honour you.

Where have you been open to God?

Reflection: 17 March, Feast of St Patrick – Gratitude, Humility and Prayer

KEEPING-COMPANY.COM | FCJ Spirituality, Mission and Identity

Stained glass image of St Patrick, Bishop.

The phenomenon that is the celebration of St Patrick’s Day is marked the world over, with emerald green, merriment and cultural pride. And every year, while confetti, festivities and parades fill the streets, bars and pubs, I find myself evading or avoiding the noise and following instead, the footsteps of ancient Celtic voices.

St Patrick is one of my favourite saints, not because he supposedly rid Ireland of snakes or survived capture by pirates in the rough northern waters. It’s not even because he won an ancient people and culture for Christ. While the legendary Apostle to Ireland and great bishop figure stands strong, in truth, I love St Patrick because of his gratitude, humility and prayer life. Not much is known about his life, except that he was an unlettered sheep-herder as a young lad, with no family or friend nearby except God, in whom he would find his soul friend, his calling and constant companion.  (I know this because I’ve read his letters: the Confession, written at a later stage in his life and the one To the Soldiers of Coroticus.)

In his Confession, he details his journey to Ireland, which was not the welcoming friendly place we associate the Irish with today. And in it, we meet a figure who despite all his trials, both physical and spiritual, remained wonderfully grateful as he “gave thanks unceasingly to God.” (Confession, n.46) Gratitude abounds in his writings.

St Patrick’s accomplishments in connecting with the pagans through peace and dialogue, and in converting among many, a princess of notability, were also retold with an immense humility. All he did, he claimed not for himself or by himself, but always by the grace of God:

“Therefore be amazed, you great and small who fear God, and you men of God, eloquent speakers, listen and contemplate. Who was it summoned me, a fool, from the midst of those who appear wise and learned in the law and powerful in rhetoric and in all things” (Confession, n.13)

I have an image of Patrick, surrounded by great flocks, but sitting as still as a rock in contemplation and prayer. He says himself that he prayed a hundred times a day and through the night as a sheepherder slave near the Slemish mountain in Antrim.

Keeping Company | County Antrim, Ireland

A view of the Slemish mountain and countryside where Patrick was a sheepherder. Co Antrim. Image credit: Douglas Craig, on TrekEarth.com

I like to believe that this foundation of prayer became the cornerstone on which he rested through the rest of his life. I believe that this was what enabled him to do great works, which have led to his appeal to this day.

However you choose to celebrate this feast, let me share with you one of my favourite Patrician resources, in honour of this admirable saint. It hasn’t been easy to track down since I first came across it years ago, but after going through many videos tagged “Confession St Patrick” (which brought up clips like “Drunken confessions on St Patrick’s Day”) here it is, thanks to Catholic Radio Dramas.

I wish all a Happy St Patrick’s Day: to those of Irish/Celtic descent and those who count themselves interiorly Celtic. A special mention goes to our sisters in Ireland and the UK, where the FCJ society has been present and instrumental since the early years. This post is dedicated you. Thank you for your commitment, dedication and service.

May God and Mary bless you. Dias muire dhuit.


Celtic spirituality at its expressive best in a composition by Maire (Moya) Brennan in The Light on the Hill.

Video: The Summons


On this Sunday, we celebrate the feast of the Baptism of our Lord, and consequently, our own baptisms as well. The Summons (Will You Come and Follow Me) by John Bell was sung at Mass, and there was an undeniable presence of the Spirit alive in the hearts of the congregation. I thought it especially expressive of the ideals of the FCJ charism.

So with this, I wish you a happy day and a blessed week ahead.

Video: Litany on the Feast of All Saints

1 November: Feast of All Saints

My personal favourite version of the Litany of the Saints is by John Becker.

The Litany is a prayer invoking the intercession or help of the saints. Traditionally when it is prayed or sung as part of the Mass, the congregation prostrates or kneels in reverence. When this happens, I like to imagine that what we are all doing is praying with the saints, and for those seven or eight minutes of music, we all fit right into that communion as peers. That unity is, in my opinion, another form of companionship, of the Spirit of God with us and for us, in many different and creative ways.

Video credit: Rebecca Board Liljenstolp

To read more about the prayer, visit Our Catholic Prayers for a concise history.