I don't tan. My skin was designed for Cork, Ireland, not the Caribbean. My complexion ranges from white to red to peeling. I am usually a walking pile of sun block covered in a big hat. While I caution everyone to stay out of the sun, I am a strong advocate for catching some rays of the Son. Jesus is the Way, the Truth and Life, and if we don't get enough time with Him, we can get lost, begin to believe lies and be less alive. So this summer I strongly encourage you to catch some of His rays with my five tips for Son bathing.

1. Direct Exposure - Long distance relationships are hard to maintain. Real love requires face time. At Mass on Sunday, we have the deepest encounter with the Lord in the Eucharist. If you can make a weekday Mass, that is a wonderful way to allow the Lord more deeply into your week. If you can't go to a daily Mass, try to stop by a Church and visit Jesus in the Tabernacle at least once a week. Call the most convenient parishes and see when they are open for prayer. If they keep them locked, come to St. Peter's on Capitol Hill, we're open every day all day.

2. A Good Reflector - To insure an even tone, some people put tin foil on cardboard to reflect the rays so that their jaw is as equally exposed as their nose. The strongest rays of the Son come from the Scriptures and the sacraments, but Christ is speaking to us in many ways. Pope Francis is emphasizing to the Church that we need to have a heart from the poor. In serving others we serve Christ not just metaphorically, but we truly encounter Jesus in the poor. Those in need are powerful reflectors of the Son.

3. Multitask - The good news is that we can get Son all through our day. It does not just have to happen in church. Our commute, waiting in the dentist's office, in line at the bank, on hold on the phone, all of these offer the perfect chance to multitask. Have a rosary in your pocket or a favorite prayer handy, and instead of being bored, be blessed.

4. Avoid Son Block - I am not talking about S-P-F, I am talking about S-I-N. God does not force us to love him. He invites us gently. Sin disrupts our capacity to hear him and experience His love most fully. Remember Confession is not just for Advent and Lent. Let the light in.

5. Glare is Good - Normally, we avoid glare, but Son glare is good. Not only is it good, it is essential to effective Son bathing. Good gifts get better when we share them. Be God's glare. Let His love continually reflect off of you and into the darkness of our world. I believe the most effective tool for evangelization is joy. A smile is the best way to win hearts for Christ. and a smile is the surest sign of an avid Son bather.