St. Ignatius is a genius. This is the third time I have done some permutation of the Thirty Days, having done one Thirty Days in 2000. The director has an interesting approach, but I am still keeping a journal, as required by the Exercises. It is very hard for me at this time to meditate, but already, just reading the words of Ignatius and pondering his wisdom, I feel graced. I highly recommend every lay person doing a mitigated version of the Thirty Days. There are several versions, but one needs a spiritual director, of course, or retreat director, to lead one on through the weeks.

St. Ignatius seems very practical, as well. I am tired from travelling and the saint does not push those, like me, who are tired or ill. One is to go at a realistic pace.

Besides prayer and meditation, one is to do penance during the retreat. God has given me a penance, as an old foot injury has flared up and is extremely painful. Also, I am experiencing sciatica, which is too frequent these days. God sometimes decides on the type of suffering one must endure, rather than one choosing mortification. My spiritual leaders have shared, and I have before with you as well, that more merit is gained for accepting suffering gracioiusly when one does not choose it, rather than choosing one’s own mortification.

This is a comforting truth. More tomorrow…and read this on Fr. Z. as it is connected to the Ignatian Exercises.