The Pilgrim Log

Weekly Inspiration to Live Your Daily Pilgrimage

Jesus: Where Peace is Found

In an Angelus address, Pope Francis teaches us where we can find the peace that lasts.

He says,

Today’s Gospel passage (cf. Mk 1:21-28) tells of a typical day in Jesus’ ministry; in particular, it is the Sabbath, a day dedicated to rest and prayer: people went to the synagogue. In the synagogue of Capernaum, Jesus reads and comments on the Scriptures. Those present are attracted by his manner of speaking; their astonishment is great because he shows an authority that is different to that of the scribes (v. 22). Furthermore, Jesus shows himself to be powerful in his deeds as well. Indeed, a man of the synagogue lashes out, addressing him as the One sent by God: He recognizes the evil spirit, orders him to leave that man, and thus drives him out (vv. 23-26).

Jesus preaches with his own authority, as someone who possesses a doctrine derived from himself, and not like the scribes who repeated previous traditions and laws that had been handed down. They repeated words, words, words, only words […] that is how they were. Just words. Instead, Jesus’ words have authority; Jesus is authoritative. And this touches the heart. Jesus’ teaching has the same authority as God who speaks. 

Peace over Discord

Our instinct from experience teaches us that when we watch the news, read articles, and listen to people, we need to be wary of trusting what we see, read and hear. This constant need to hold up to judgment all information, assuming it is at least a half-truth and more than likely false, makes us skeptical people. We doubt everything.

This way of being causes unrest; discord. We lack the peace; tranquility that comes from believing we are receiving truth from what messages come at us.

Pope Francis explains why in Jesus we find true peace:

Indeed, with a single command, he easily frees the possessed man from the evil one and heals him. Why? Because his word does what he says.

To find the peace that only Jesus can provide takes some effort on our part. Specifically, we need to know what He says so we can understand what He will do in us.

This is done by reading Scripture, especially the Gospels. Pope Francis guides us in this:

Always, do not forget, carry a small copy of the Gospel in your pocket or in your bag, to read throughout the day, to listen to that authoritative word of Jesus. And then, we all have problems, we all have our sins, we all have spiritual afflictions; let us ask Jesus: “Jesus, you are the prophet, the Son of God, the one who was promised to us to heal us. Heal me!” Asking Jesus to heal our sins, our ills.

Choose to Believe

When I was on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, we visited Tabgha; the place where Jesus multiplied five loaves and two fishes, feeding over 5000 people. See Matthew 14:13-21. A Church is built over the rock where Jesus performed this miracle. As I prayed there, kneeling in front of the Tabernacle where our Lord is present in the Blessed Sacrament, I heard Him speak in my heart,

“I still perform miracles. What do you want multiplied?”

My instinct is to doubt, but instead, I choose instead to believe. I take the Lord at His word and I answer Him, “Charity, Lord. I need charity.”

It has been almost seven years since that pilgrimage, and to this day, I feel our Lord’s charity filling me to overflowing . . . and bringing His Peace along with it!

Peace is found in Jesus Christ.

Here are 3 steps to finding Peace:

  1. Read and Meditate on what Jesus did and said in the Gospels.
  2. Ask Jesus to act through His Word. He loves when we remind Him of what He speaks through Scripture. Do not hesitate to ask big!
  3. Do not doubt; choose to believe He will act as He says.

Nan Balfour is a grateful Catholic whose greatest desire is to make our Lord Jesus more loved. She seeks to accomplish this through her vocation to womanhood, marriage, motherhood, and as a writer, speaker and events coordinator for Pilgrim Center of Hope.

Answering Christ’s call, Pilgrim Center of Hope guides people to encounter Him so as to live in hope, as pilgrims in daily life. See what’s happening & let us journey with you! Visit PilgrimCenterOfHope.org.

Palm Sunday – The Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ

Did you feel left out? Because of the pandemic, we do not have missalettes in the pews and the congregation didn’t have a part to play in the reading of the Passion of our Lord. One of the most important moments in the narrative is when we all together say, “crucify him.” I’m going to provide that opportunity now. Please together say:

Crucify Him!

It was easy for us together to say, “crucify him.” If time allowed, how would it be if each one of us were individually asked to say, “crucify him.” It might help us to understand our personal role in the Passion of Jesus. In reality, all of us have said, “crucify him” many times. Every time we sin, we say crucify him because sin is a choice and he died for every sin. When we read the Passion of Christ, we see the sin of many people, but what is most important is that we see the consequence of our personal sins.

Display a Crucifix In Your Home

The universal sign of our Catholic faith is the crucifix because it reveals both the love of God for us and the consequence of our sins. For this reason, every Catholic home should have a crucifix on display. The crucifix must be visible in a prominent location in every Catholic Church, which Christ founded to continue his saving work. In his Church, Christ has made available to us every means to overcome sin and grow in virtue. Though God is everywhere and loves everyone, it is through his Church and her sacraments that we are promised the greatest possible personal and intimate relationship with God. In baptism, we become children of God and the way is made open to us to receive the other sacraments that support our every need during life on earth. It is especially in the sacrament of reconciliation that we have a personal encounter with Jesus Christ who forgives our sins through his priest and grants us the grace to make progress in our spiritual life. In addition to eternal life, the greatest gift Jesus gives us is himself in the Holy Eucharist. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, during Mass, bread and wine are changed into the body and blood of Jesus Christ. It is for this reason that we must be free of all mortal sin by a sacramental confession and believe that the Host we receive is the body, blood, soul, and divinity of Jesus.

Encounter Christ At Mass

Every Mass is a pilgrimage toward Christ. During the Penitential Rite, together we ask forgiveness for the sins we have committed that were not serious enough for the sacrament of confession. At the end of the Liturgy of the Word, together we profess our faith in what we believe as a Church. During the Liturgy of the Eucharist, together we proclaim Hosanna in the highest and the Lord’s prayer. And then individually, as we come forward to receive Jesus in the Holy Eucharist we proclaim, “Amen”, acknowledging that we are in communion with the Roman Catholic Church and believe all that she teaches, and we believe we are receiving the real presence of Jesus Christ and we have prepared our self spiritually.

At every Mass, through the power of the Holy Spirit, the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus are made present to us, and at every Mass our personal “Amen” when we receive our Lord is a reparation for the times we said, “crucify him.”


Deacon Tom FoxK.H.S. is Co-Founder & Co-Director of Pilgrim Center of Hope with his wife, Mary Jane Fox. The two left their careers after a profound conversion experience and began working full-time in ministry at their parish in 1986. After several years and having impacted tens of thousands of families, the Foxes founded Pilgrim Center of Hope in 1993 as a response to the Church’s call for a New Evangelization. Deacon Tom is an invested member of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, a Knight of the Holy Sepulchre.

Answering Christ’s call, Pilgrim Center of Hope guides people to encounter Him so as to live in hope, as pilgrims in daily life. See what’s happening & let us journey with you! Visit PilgrimCenterOfHope.org.

What Are You Looking For?

That is the question Jesus asked two of John the Baptist’s disciples who began to follow him.  Let’s read the story:

The next day John was there again with two of his disciples, and as he watched Jesus walk by, he said, “Behold, the Lamb of God.”  The two disciples* heard what he said and followed Jesus.  Jesus turned and saw them following him and said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi”, “where are you staying?”  He said to them, “Come, and you will see.” (John 1:35-39).

It is interesting that one of John’s disciple that was following Jesus didn’t answer Jesus’ question immediately; he instead said Where are you staying? Perhaps we can relate to this response; not knowing what to answer when asked What are you looking for?

The question Jesus asks is an important one. Whether we realize it or not, that is a question that stirs in the heart of every one of us. More often than not, people are trying to find the answer through accomplishments as measured by society. So then why is it that so many people who have accomplished great things are still looking to satisfy that question? It is not a rare thing to discover in the news that someone who we thought successful has turned to drugs, alcohol, or even suicide.

The reality is, we can only find the answer to that question in the One who asked it of the disciples. Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life; outside of him, the pursuit of our purpose for being on this earth will end in sadness and even hopelessness.  It was St. Augustine who said:

“Our hearts are restless O’ Lord until they rest in you”.

Some of the most renowned sinners in history have become persons filled with joy, peace, and hope by following the One who asked the question, “What are you looking for?”

As you are reading this, believe you are loved unconditionally by our Heavenly Father.   You can begin anew today.  How?  Imagine yourself walking with Jesus; He knows you, he looks into your eyes and sees who you are.  Oh sure, He knows what you have done in the past, but that is the past.  He invites you to begin anew, to follow Him now, and begin a new life filled with peace and hope.  Ask Jesus to touch your heart with His healing hand.  Experience his love by accepting Jesus into your heart and then follow him.


Mary Jane Fox, D.H.S. is Co-Founder & Co-Director of Pilgrim Center of Hope with her husband, Deacon Tom Fox. The two left their careers after a profound conversion experience and began working full-time in ministry at their parish in 1986. After several years and having impacted tens of thousands of families, the Foxes founded Pilgrim Center of Hope in 1993 as a response to the Church’s call for a New Evangelization. Mary Jane is an invested member of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, a Dame of the Holy Sepulchre.

Answering Christ’s call, Pilgrim Center of Hope guides people to encounter Him so as to live in hope, as pilgrims in daily life. See what’s happening & let us journey with you! Visit PilgrimCenterOfHope.org.