Wednesday, June 29, 2011

5 Ways to Get Spiritually Fit This Summer


By Eric Porteous | JUNE 29, 2011

One of my favorite things to do is workout. Whether at a gym, running outside, or doing P90X in my home, I love getting my body into shape. (Now, if only I could work on my eating habits a little bit). For me there’s just something about the discipline it takes, the feeling I get at the end, and the little results I can see that show me I’m getting healthier.

While it’s important to eat right and exercise, it’s even more important to train your soul (1 Timothy 4:7-8). As you continue on with your summer break, here are five ways to help you get spiritually fit:

1. Daily Mass. As high school students, it can be difficult to get to Daily Mass during the school year. Often times, it is scheduled while you are in class, but that’s not the case when you’re on break. Find what time Daily Mass is offered at your parish and go. There is nothing better that you can do for your soul than receiving the Eucharist everyday. For an added bonus, bring some friends. Not only will all of you grow spiritually but you’ll be great witnesses to the rest of your parish.

2. Reconciliation. Summer break can be a great time to get in the habit of attending the Sacrament of Reconciliation on a regular basis. Find out what day and time the Sacrament is offered at your parish and neighboring parishes. Make it a priority to go once a week, and take time to really examine your conscience beforehand.

3. Scripture. Too often during the school year, it can be easy to use homework or reading assignments as excuses not to open the bible. But, during summer we may not have that problem. Why not take some time to read the scriptures? If you don’t know where to start, try praying through the Sunday Readings. The great news is that, we’ve got the Sunday, Sunday, Sunday podcast to help you break them open. If you want to go further, try the Daily Readings for Mass posted here on Also, many Youth Ministers host Bible Studies during the summer, so be sure to ask them the day and time so you can attend.

4. Rosary. If you want to deepen your relationship with Jesus, try deepening your relationship with Mary. There is no better way to do this than with the Rosary. If you’re not sure how to pray it, ask your Youth Minister to help you, and commit to praying it consistently. Maybe you want to start off with every Sunday. Maybe you want to pray it every morning after you wake up. However you choose to do it, stay committed and know that God can really move in those 20 minutes.

5. Eucharistic Adoration. Silence is something that we are slowly losing in our world today. It seems that no matter where you turn there is some kind of noise to distract us. There are cell phones, music, TVs, computers, and more almost everywhere. But there is still one great place we can go to find some silent prayer: the Adoration Chapel. Spend some time in silent Adoration this summer, and again make it a commitment. Every Thursday our staff takes a Holy Hour in front of the Blessed Sacrament at 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Perhaps you could join us then. While you may not be physically present with us, we will be united in the Eucharist.

These are just five ways to help you grow spiritually fit. Do your best to make them a part of your routine this summer. After all, if you are willing to put in the discipline it takes, not only will you feel great but you’ll start to see results in the way you live your life.

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