As I woke this morning and walked into our living room, I was greeted by one of our pet rats. She seen me coming and I greeted her with a warm “Good Morning”. She stood on her hind legs looking at me and it was adorable. This little creature of our Lord’s put a smile on my face. I seen her just as that. A creature of our Lord. Lesser no doubt than a human, as she is unable to reason as a human, but she brought me joy just the same. Was my greeting to her received as joy? No. Lesser creatures can not experience joy as we do as true Joy is a gift of our Lord. Joy is the gift that one retains even if it is not given in return. It’s the peace of our Lord, come to rest in the heart.
Have you ever greeted another human with joy, who does not know you, whom you have never met, in this way? Generally a smile is given in return. The gift of Joy when given to others, is no doubt the gift that keeps giving. Be it that it is given in return, or not.
As I contemplate today’s Novena, I can see the joy in the Wise Men, at finding our Lord. That gift of Joy they possessed without knowing at the time, which they tried to give to King Herod, who utterly despised it, returned to them, as they continued to seek our Lord where He was.
Today’s Gospel reading of Matthew 10:16-23, also a correlation to this gift of Joy, states: whoever endures to the end will be saved. This joy, is a finality of knowing our Lord. No matter what takes place, we know that our Lord is King. We know that our Lord sustains us. Our Lord gives us life giving water. We find ourselves swimming in His love. When we know this, all that we do, is for our Lord. One can not see that we are not swimming in this love, and simply we know where we are. Thus, in all that we encounter, we are in prayer. We know that our Lord’s love for us, prevails over all. The gift of joy, is our Lord Himself.
I recently deleted my twitter account, and in the next few weeks, will be deleting my Facebook page. You see, I have been sitting on social media for many years now, not just blogging here, but starting all the way back in 06, blogging for someone else. I have begun to feel like a parrot lately. I can go back all through the years, and recite the same things, over an over again. I don’t even have to write them anymore, as my comments on most everything have already been logged here.
Politics never changes. Its always political. Faith, our faith, in how we grow in it, changes us all the time, while our Lord, never changes. What more can I say all day long on social media, that I haven’t already said? Not much. What I can do, is put it more into practice in the ways I have been unable to in the past. Within my own “home”. Holy Abandonment is beautiful. It allows the soul to rest in our Lord, knowing that no matter what may come, may our Lord’s Will be done. My own “home” is what our Lord has entrusted me with.
So my days and time on social media platforms may not be a prevalent as past years, but my putting this faith into actions, I have been given, will be used where it is needed. In my home, in formation with my Carmalite community and in my parish.
Imagine my surprise today, to find this beautiful reflection in my morning prayer, in iBreviary. The words, echo my thoughts as I have contemplated this decision to leave. Our Lord is the Divine Master of all. What peace He has given to souls who seek Him.
From the book Way of Perfection by Saint Teresa of Avila, virgin (Obras de la gloriosa madre Sta Teresa de Jesus, Tomo 1, Madrid, 1752: 30:1-4 pp. 526-528)
Your kingdom come
“When asking a favor of some person of importance would anyone be so ill-mannered and thoughtless as not first to consider how best to address him in order to make a good impression and give him no cause for offense? Surely he would think over his petition carefully and his reason for making it, especially if it were for something specific and important as our good Jesus tells us our petitions should be. It seems to me that this point deserves serious attention. My Lord, could you not have included all in one word by saying “Father, give us whatever is good for us?” After all, to one who understands everything so perfectly, what need is there to say more?
O Eternal Wisdom, between you and your Father that was enough; that was how you prayed in the garden. You expressed your desire and fear but surrendered yourself to his will. But as for us, my Lord, you know that we are less submissive to the will of your Father and need to mention each thing separately in order to stop and think whether it would be good for us, and otherwise not ask for it. You see, the gift our Lord intends for us may be by far the best, but if it is not what we wanted we are quite capable of flinging it back in his face. That is the kind of people we are; ready cash is the only wealth we understand.
Therefore, the good Jesus bids us repeat these words, this prayer for his kingdom to come in us: Hallowed be your name, your kingdom come. See how wise our Master is! But what do we mean when we pray for this kingdom? That is what I am going to consider now, for it is important that we should understand it. Our good Jesus placed these two petitions side by side because he realized that in our inadequacy we could never fittingly hallow, praise, exalt or glorify this holy name of the eternal Father unless he enabled us to do so by giving us his kingdom here on earth. But since we must know what we are asking for and how important it is to pray for it without ceasing and to do everything in our power to please him who is to give it to us, I should now like to give you my own thoughts on the matter.
Of the many joys that are found in the kingdom of heaven, the greatest seems to me to be the sense of tranquility and well-being that we shall experience when we are free from all concern for earthly things. Glad because others are glad and for ever at peace, we shall have the deep satisfaction of seeing that by all creatures the Lord is honored and praised, and his name blessed. No one ever offends him, for there everyone loves him. Loving him is the soul’s one concern. Indeed it cannot help but love him, for it knows him. Here below our love must necessarily fall short of that perfection and constancy, but even so how different it would be, how much more like that of heaven, if we really knew our Lord!”
Edit to add: 7/03/2020 2:00 PM
I have now, reactivated my twitter account as of today, as I received an email from the Coordinator of Lay Carmelites, Province of the Most Pure Heart of Mary, inquiring if I would take the position of Regional Formation Coordinator for the San Diego region. After much consideration, and truly, this being the feast of St. Thomas the Apostle, this is something I have been pondering for quite a while. Where, Lord, did You need me? That I may give You my all. What, Lord, are You asking of me? That I may give You to all. Social media, for me, had become a very loud place as I was trying to find that inner silence again. Sometimes, we get drawn into the chaos of the world, and our Lord truly is the only exit. I was unsure as to the answers of these questions and to be frank, that email from the Coordinator sat in my inbox for two days, without me even seeing it.
I have answered with a resounding yes to the coordinator and to our Lord. This latest encounter with our Lord, has definitely found me proclaiming, “My Lord and my God.”
With this yes, comes the challenge to keep my focus on our Lord, and Carmel. Looking into the deleting of some platforms, I have found myself turning them back on, as there are many souls who do seek our Lord, and in those platforms, a channel to Him has been established.
The Lord has made his salvation known to the whole world
As we draw close to the Epiphany, and the world is rattling its sabers for war, might I suggest to all, to learn how to forgive those who have hurt you in any way, as I am sure we can all say, we are not so innocent to have never hurt anyone. The fact we are sinners is a testament to hurting someone. So I also suggest to those who have been hurt by others in any way, to forgive them. Everyone.
Think for a moment what would happen if every soul on earth, turned to their enemies and said, I am sorry. Please forgive me. And now imagine if that forgiveness was given. With our Lord, it is. And in that moment, we all begin to heal from the pain inflicted to one another. The key to obtaining word peace is saying and carrying out the words: I am sorry & I forgive you. May the peace of Christ rule our hearts.
From a sermon by Saint Leo the Great, pope (Sermo 3 in Epiphania Domini, 1-3. 5: PL 54, 240-244)
The Lord has made his salvation known to the whole world
The loving providence of God determined that in the last days he would aid the world, set on its course to destruction. He decreed that all nations should be saved in Christ.
A promise had been made to the holy patriarch Abraham in regard to these nations. He was to have a countless progeny, born not from his body but from the seed of faith. His descendants are therefore compared with the array of the stars. The father of all nations was to hope not in an earthly progeny but in a progeny from above.
Let the full number of the nations now take their place in the family of the patriarchs. Let the children of the promise now receive the blessing in the seed of Abraham, the blessing renounced by the children of his flesh. In the persons of the Magi let all people adore the Creator of the universe; let God be known, not in Judea only, but in the whole world, so that his name may be great in all Israel.
Dear friends, now that we have received instruction in this revelation of God’s grace, let us celebrate with spiritual joy the day of our first harvesting, of the first calling of the Gentiles. Let us give thanks to the merciful God, who has made us worthy, in the words of the Apostle, to share the position of the saints in light, who has rescued us from the power of darkness, and brought us into the kingdom of his beloved Son. As Isaiah prophesied: the people of the Gentiles, who sat in darkness, have seen a great light, and for those who dwelt in the region of the shadow of death a light has dawned. He spoke of them to the Lord: The Gentiles, who do not know you, will invoke you, and the peoples, who knew you not, will take refuge in you.
This is the day that Abraham saw, and rejoiced to see, when he knew that the sons born of his faith would be blessed in his seed, that is, in Christ. Believing that he would be the father of the nations, he looked into the future, giving glory to God, in full awareness that God is able to do what he has promised.
This is the day that David prophesied in the psalms, when he said: All the nations that you have brought into being will come and fall down in adoration in your presence, Lord, and glorify your name. Again, the Lord has made known his salvation; in the sight of the nations he has revealed his justice.
This came to be fulfilled, as we know, from the time when the star beckoned the three wise men out of their distant country and led them to recognize and adore the King of heaven and earth. The obedience of the star calls us to imitate its humble service: to be servants, as best we can, of the grace that invites all men to find Christ.
Dear friends, you must have the same zeal to be of help to one another; then, in the kingdom of God, to which faith and good works are the way, you will shine as children of the light: through our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with God the Father and the Holy Spirit for ever and ever. Amen.
I am reminded: “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.”
Although heartbreaking, be at peace.
Lord Jesus Christ, may we move closer to You and unite our suffering to Your suffering, for the conversion of hearts. In all our heartbreak, it is You, O Lord who remain for all time and all eternity. Amen
Prayers for all.
Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things are passing away:
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things
Whoever has God lacks nothing;
God alone suffices.
My family and I were out at dinner last light, celebrating my birthday. Even in these moments, contemplation of our Lord takes place.
As we sat down and the server took our orders, he had placed a few coasters down to hold our drinks. On the coasters were a picture of gift with the words “Loyalty Is Rewarded”. As I looked at the printed gift and pondered the words, immediately my thoughts were brought to our Lord on the cross and the small group of followers who stayed with Him. Looking at the picture of the Christmas gift on the coaster, on a side bar, were some words with the highlighted enlarged words “STEAK”. I thought of how we often rip through the wrapping without noticing at all the real gift. Would anyone notice the presence of our Lord in a crowded place as this, in such a simple way as this? Can anyone assess the real presence in our midst in Word?
If you look at the photo above, although not a photo of what I had seen, I will tell you what our Lord was showing me in the gift.
The ribbons in the cross pattern, showing me the Cross of our Lord and the bow in the center being our Lord on the cross.
“Loyalty Is Rewarded”
Constancy in allegiance to God or the things of God; steadfastness in fidelity to a person or cause, organization or enterprise. Implicit in loyalty is strong affection based on firm conviction that the object of one’s fidelity deserves the allegiance. (Etym. Latin legalis, of or belonging to the law, legal.)
And all while contemplating this, the server came back and took our orders. I had ordered a steak, cooked medium. You may say what does this have to do with anything? I did also at the time.
The server left and the conversation began again with all of us at the table. We prayed grace before our meal came.
I took hold of that coaster again as it was drawing my attention to the word “STEAK”. What is at steak? Well, our Lord was on the stake, and all of us are at stake. For some reason, I began to ponder the Gospel of Matt. 25:23
His master said to him, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’
I began to tell our Lord interiorly, forgive me Lord, I ordered my steak medium and not well done. I hope the life I am leading is pleasing to you and I am never lukewarm.
The server returned and with him, brought our meal. As he placed my order in front of me, what should have been a steak cooked medium, was dark and black. It looked burnt. I stopped for a moment just staring at it. Recalling what was taking place in my contemplation of Him. Without saying a word, I cut into the black steak, and it was perfect.
This coming of our Lord, at Christmas, as we rip apart the wrapping to get to what is hidden underneath, may we never lose sight of Him in our hearts, His commands and His promise to us:
“Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.”
I just received this beautiful reflective poem from one of my OCarm sisters of the Third Order, and I know it is not mine to keep. I must share it with you all, as I am sure you are also suffering in one way or another in this world we have come to understand as exile.
I am not sure who wrote it, as it is a variation from a Trappist Monk, but it surely speaks to me. I pray for you and I hope in all your suffering, you look deeply at our Lord in His, joining all of your suffering to His.
There He hangs — pale figure pinned against the wood. God grant that I could love Him as I really know I should.
I draw a little closer to share that love Divine And almost hear Him whisper, “Ah foolish child of Mine!
If I should now embrace you, My hands would stain you red. And if I leaned to whisper, The thorns would pierce your head.”
And then I knew in silence that love demands a price ‘Twas then I learned that suffering is but the kiss of Christ.
Pope Francis recommended “silence and prayer” when one is confronted “with people lacking good will, with people who only seek scandal, who seek only division, who seek only destruction, even within the family: silence, prayer.”
I couldn’t sleep. So I found a moment, spending time with one of my favorites, on his feast day. We were walking through how St. Augustine Florida got its name. And of course, our Lord brings me His peace, in teaching me that rivals and political fighting have always been things of worldly souls.
Don Pedro Menéndez de Avilés was sent by Spain (Catholic) to protect Spanish interests as international rivalries began to play out across the Atlantic. France (Huguenots) were to be expelled. In finding this, quite interesting by the way, it brought me comfort in the way in how when we look at our past, in Truth, the more things change, the more our Lord stays the same.
“In retrospect, the decision to name the town St. Augustine seems to have been a fitting one. During its history of over 450 years, the town, like its namesake, has experienced its share of struggles. St. Augustine has been burned and looted on several occasions by pirates, hostile natives and rival Europeans. It has changed hands from country to country four times(!). During the civil rights movement, it was the location of numerous protests and counter attacks.”
And yet, remained named St. Augustine. How many attacks have we, the Church faced over the 2000 year history? How many struggles? And yet, she remains because our Lord remains.
“Late have I loved you, O Beauty ever ancient, ever new, late have I loved you! You were within me, but I was outside, and it was there that I searched for you. In my unloveliness I plunged into the lovely things which you created. You were with me, but I was not with you. Created things kept me from you; yet if they had not been in you they would have not been at all. You called, you shouted, and you broke through my deafness. You flashed, you shone, and you dispelled my blindness. You breathed your fragrance on me; I drew in breath and now I pant for you. I have tasted you, now I hunger and thirst for more. You touched me, and I burned for your peace.”
While I now receive with much satisfaction your congratulations on my being called, by an unanimous vote, to the first station in my country; I cannot but duly notice your politeness in offering an apology for the unavoidable delay. As that delay has given you an opportunity of realizing, instead of anticipating, the benefits of the general government, you will do me the justice to believe, that your testimony of the increase of the public prosperity, enhances the pleasure which I should otherwise have experienced from your affectionate address.
I feel that my conduct, in war and in peace, has met with more general approbation than could reasonably have been expected and I find myself disposed to consider that fortunate circumstance, in a great degree, resulting from the able support and extraordinary candour of my fellow-citizens of all denominations.
The prospect of national prosperity now before us is truly animating, and ought to excite the exertions of all good men to establish and secure the happiness of their country, in the permanent duration of its freedom and independence. America, under the smiles of a Divine Providence, the protection of a good government, and the cultivation of manners, morals, and piety, cannot fail of attaining an uncommon degree of eminence, in literature, commerce, agriculture, improvements at home and respectability abroad.
As mankind become more liberal they will be more apt to allow that all those who conduct themselves as worthy members of the community are equally entitled to the protection of civil government. I hope ever to see America among the foremost nations in examples of justice and liberality. And I presume that your fellow-citizens will not forget the patriotic part which you took in the accomplishment of their Revolution, and the establishment of their government; or the important assistance which they received from a nation in which the Roman Catholic faith is professed.
I thank you, gentlemen, for your kind concern for me. While my life and my health shall continue, in whatever situation I may be, it shall be my constant endeavour to justify the favourable sentiments which you are pleased to express of my conduct. And may the members of your society in America, animated alone by the pure spirit of Christianity, and still conducting themselves as the faithful subjects of our free government, enjoy every temporal and spiritual felicity.
In the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Its been a very busy few days for me. My husband graduated from College with a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautics, and his celebration was on the same day of our children’s last day of school, on this past Friday. Yesterday morning, I woke early and drove to meet my sister in Las Vegas, who was helping my niece move.
I made the drive to Vegas, to see my sister and pick up a box of very old photos and mementos from our family. Photos of my parents and other relatives my children have never met. Its a way for me to show them the many souls that have helped to create our “family”. The six hour drive from San Diego, on Saturday morning, was full of prayer and reflection on our Lord. Not anything near as beautiful as this morning has been, in the celebration of Holy Mass for the Feast of the Most Holy Trinity.
My sister and I had planned on attending the 11:00 AM Holy Mass at Guardian Angles Cathedral in Las Vegas, but as plans often change, I was awake a little after five-thirty this morning and we were able to attend the 8:00 AM Holy Mass. It was easy to find the Cathedral and when we pulled out front and parked, we had arrived about an hour early.
I contemplated the design of the Church and the mosaic on the front. (Photo above at the top of the post). The message is very clear although the art itself, modern as it is, isn’t exactly what sparks in me. As we entered the Cathedral, as I normally do, my eyes sought our Lord in the Tabernacle. He wasn’t behind the Altar. So we looked deeper and my heart lead us to a small room off to the left of the Altar.
We prayed in front of our Lord until Mass was about to begin. In contemplation, I struggled with the design and the things that didn’t register with me. I tried to focus on the Glorious Mysteries of the Holy Rosary. Still with reverence to our Lord and the Truth of His presence here. As we finished praying, we went to see the little gift shop in the back of the Cathedral, which contained many beautiful religious things.
As Holy Mass was about to start, we took our place inside once again, and I began to pray. Holy Mass in this place, was so beautiful, It changed my entire outlook of what I thought wasn’t appeasing to my eyes. At the very moment of Transubstantiation, our Lord’s presence on the Altar, I heard in my heart, “Look through”. The eyes in my heart began to see what He was saying to me. The entire Cathedral was full of the symbolism of the Most Holy Trinity. The TRIANGLE. Looking beyond the art that didn’t speak in me, I could see very clearly what our Lord in the Eucharist was saying and showing me. The inner beauty of this place being the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. All present.
As Holy Mass ended, I left this beautiful Cathedral in the heart of “Sin City”, in His peace, knowing the Triumph of our Lord with fresh eyes, in the Most Holy Trinity.
The above photo of the stained glass window can be found at the link below. Its called:
From the deck of the battleship of USS Missouri, looking toward the USS Arizona Memorial, at Pearl Harbor in Honolulu, the guns now silent, along with those voices taken that day and the days and years that followed. Peace.
As a former military blogger, I spent many hours speaking with so many souls from this time in our nations history. Countless interviews and many more hours of watching films, reading and looking into different aspects of Military History in a way that glorified it all. Don’t get me wrong, I do understand what was at stake and we are a blessed nation and a different world for the sacrifice of so many.
As I sat last night watching a documentary on D Day with my husband, himself a 23.5 year USMC veteran, I found myself unable to watch anymore. It hurt in ways I had not experienced before. To see the souls of so many lost, so many unknown story’s of who they were, who gave all. The once self glorified battle I used to watch, once upon a time, was gone and replaced with a very deep sorrow and pain to see all these men being killed. Killed in unmentionable ways. I came to realize the work our Lord had done within my own heart. That hardened heart of stone, had become soft and was beating in my chest, for not only the fallen, but for a longing for His peace now, in this world torn to shreds by war and hate for one another.
I began to pray for the souls I seen being blown to bits on that beach. Imagining their family’s loss and pain. The children who never got to see their dad’s again. The mothers who never got to see their sons. The soldiers who never returned home. Just as today, so many are taken, because those of the world, in this world, have to feed their ego’s with the things of this world, that can never satisfy. And thus, it all continues on the same path to destruction. Taking everything and everyone in its path with it.
Lord God, your own Son was delivered into the hands of the wicked, yet he prayed for his persecutors and overcame hatred with the blood of the Cross. Relive the sufferings of the innocent victims of war; grant them peace of mind, healing of body, and a renewed faith in your protection and care. Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen
For all the souls lost, in all wars:
Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord.
And let the perpetual light shine upon them.
And may the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.
“Lord Jesus Christ, who are called the Prince of Peace, who are yourself our peace and reconciliation, who so often said, “Peace to you,” grant us peace. Make all men and women witnesses of truth, justice, and brotherly love. Banish from their hearts whatever might endanger peace. Enlighten our rulers that they may guarantee and defend the great gift of peace. May all peoples on the earth become as brothers and sisters. May longed-for peace blossom forth and reign always over us all. Amen – St. John Paul II
Lord Jesus Christ, may all war end as there is no worldly glory to be found in war and let Your eternal peace be the glory all men and woman seek, for now and all time for all eternity.
Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And You shall renew the face of the earth.
O, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations, Through Christ Our Lord, Amen.
I was blessed to be able to spend some time with my children at the zoo this afternoon. As we got loaded onto the sky tram at the zoo, my youngest daughter began to wince and whimper about the noises and the jerky movements of the cab. Before we travel anywhere, we say a little prayer asking for the intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary to pray for us, followed by Sacred Heart of Jesus, I trust in you, three times and we finish up with Abba Father, I love you. We began with this little burst of praying and looked about as we climbed higher and higher. My daughter, still a bit nervous at the trip across the zoo looked at me with a bit of fear.
She had never been afraid before, as we had been on this tram several times over the years. This time, was a little different. I reminded her of how she always wanted to fly, and told her to lift her arms out wide, like she was gliding, and she did. She let out a little cry and I said, okay, now bring one arm back in and touch your forehead. She did and held it there. I said, okay now say, in the name of the Father. She smiled. I told her then to bring her hand down and now touch her heart, and she did. I told her, now say, and of the Son. Her smile got larger. Then I told her to touch one shoulder and bring her arm back and touch the other one, and she did. I told her, now say, and of the Holy Spirit. She giggled a bit, and began to fly.
We fly to thy patronage, O holy Mother of God; despise not our petitions in our necessities, but deliver us always from all dangers, O glorious and blessed Virgin.
This morning, the second I opened my eyes and began to pray, I was filled with a desire to take up to our Lord all the suffering of my family, friends and enemies. I began my Morning Offering and added to it, the suffering of those who do not know You Lord and the suffering of those who do not know how to place their suffering with Yours on the Cross.
Sweet Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary to your most Sacred Heart, I offer you all my prayers, my works, my joys, my sorrows, my suffering and those of my friends, enemies, and those who do not know you nor how to join theirs too You and unite them all to the Blessed Sacrament in the Tabernacles throughout the entire world, offered in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass for all the intentions of Your most Sacred Heart, for all the intentions of our Holy Father Pope Francis, for the Holy Souls in purgatory and for the conversion of hearts. Amen
I pray the morning offering every day as I open my eyes but there was something special about this morning. Something different. TO truly unite the suffering of others who do not know Him, was something that burned with me and filled me with His peace. As I got out of bed and ran through a few things this morning, my husband woke and came to me with something that bothered him. I hugged him and remembered that prayer this morning and knew that embrace with him, was the peace he was looking for. He didn’t carry on about it but was able to let it go and get on with his day. He was smiling when he left for work this morning and it is my desire for him to return with that same smile.
Last night, we spent the evening with friends who came in from out of town. There was a lot of anxiety in a few of the conversations from a few souls talking to me about how they were looking for peace in their lives. In one conversation that I had with a friend of my mother in law, as she tried to speak to me about different things, truly pagan things, my mother in law kept chiming in with things that just kept upsetting the conversation we were trying to have and at every turn I could see her misery in her own life. I knew that no matter what I would say to her to try and bring her peace, was not going to happen as she just wasn’t open to peace. In order to have peace, we must be open to receiving it. That doesn’t mean we no longer offer it, we offer it more intensely. As she continued, I was able to interject our Lords own words which took the negative running rabid and tossed it off the cliff. The conversation became easy and ended with her friends stating it was time to leave.
There was something else going on here last night and I could see people I knew for many years looking for something but in all the wrong places. Not only could I see that they couldn’t find our Lord’s body, but they couldn’t even see His tomb. They couldn’t remember His name. They couldn’t remember what He had done and looked for Him, His peace and joy in places where only an essence of it was left, because someone attached a “New and Improved” label on it, and not in His fullness. They didn’t want to find His body, his tomb, His suffering in our lives. They had forgotten the simple things and were tied up in things that can never bring peace and joy. When we are suffering in the slightest way, we must remember that even what we call our suffering is not ours, but our Lord’s on His Cross for you and His call to come back home to Him.
I prayed Divine Mercy Novena with my daughter when we arrived back home and found consolation in who the fifth day was to be dedicated to.
“Today bring to Me the Souls of those who have separated themselves from My Church” and immerse them in the ocean of My mercy. During My bitter Passion they tore at My Body and Heart, that is, My Church. As they return to unity with the Church My wounds heal and in this way they alleviate My Passion.”
There are so many Lord. There are so many. Mostly those who do not want to grip the Cross rather seek to grab onto anything but the Cross. May the suffering souls in this world, learn to unite all with You O Lord.
“If it is by the power of God that I cast out devils, says the Lord, then the kingdom of God has come to you already.”
I am grateful Lord, for the trials, tribulations, sufferings and pain. Praise, glory and honor to you O Lord Jesus Christ. My Lord and my God. Thank you Lord for Your joy and your peace. May I bring this peace and joy that you have placed in the heart of my heart, to all you place on this path in exile and may they also, return to you O Lord with their entire heart. I love you my Lord and my God and know as I am still in exile, I am incapable of loving You more than you love us. Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my hope, love, faith and trust in You and I freely give this entire heart in me, that you keep alive, cleaning, beating, and nurtured by you Lord, to you, Jesus Christ my King, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, our Mother. Amen
Today’s message from Pope Francis comes after a morning I have spent bringing our Lord in the Eucharist to a Nursing Facility.
As I heard our Holy Fathers message, I was reminded of another video I posted this morning on my Facebook page. One where I did not see a Rhythmic Gymnast, but rather how word, deed and our Lord’s grace come together to fulfill the needs of the weakest among us. We should be “flexible” not “ridged” to His voice, and His grace, willing to say yes to Him, without thinking of self first, at a moments notice. Allowing Him to do the work, though us in exile. Just as we do the work in exile, through Him. Praise, glory and honor to our Lord.
As I sat with our Lord tonight in Exposition, I had SO many questions about my trials. UNTIL I pondered and asked Him why am I allowing any of this to bother me. I have You Lord. Then came – I may not THINK I am worried, nor unsettled but in reality, that is what it is, for others. I became quiet. At that moment I began to ponder St. John and how beautiful it was for him to rest his head on the chest of our Lord. But, that too (for those moments) were only temporary moment for St. John. BLAMO This scripture than came to my heart. “I have told you this so that you might have peace in me. In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the world.” We are still in the world, although in exile, while living in the Spirit there is complete tranquility. Think about how spending one hour with our Lord in Exposition is truly time to rest your head on His chest and lean into Him. My work in my interior life needs to reflect more on His peace while I am still here, in an unsettled world, I must be “settled” in Him.
The family gathers to ask God’s blessing on their home and on those who live in or visit the home. It is an invitation for Jesus to be a daily guest in our home, our comings and goings, our conversations, our work and play, our joys and sorrows.
A traditional way of doing this is to use chalk to write above the home’s entrance, 20 + C + M + B + 16. The letters C, M, B have two meanings. They are the initials of the traditional names of the three magi: Caspar, Melchior, and Balthazar. They also abbreviate the Latin words Christus mansionem benedicat, “May Christ bless the house.” The “+” signs represent the cross and 2016 is the year.
Leading up to this beautiful Solemnity, yesterday I was able to hang up a few items in our freshly painted hallway. We had been without any doors on our rooms for a few years and my husband surprised me a few weeks ago, by purchasing some and having them hung. Without my knowing about it. A few days before installation of the doors, “out of the blue”, I decided that the hallway was painted way to dark and needed a fresh coat of white paint. As I informed my husband of the decision to paint, he chuckled thinking I knew he had someone coming to install new doors. I did not know and went about painting. When I finished, he had informed me of what he was planning.
My girls before bedtime often forget that we pray before bed as they are captivated by the world around them. We needed something to remind my girls that before bed, we pray the rosary together. A visual they would see besides my constant calling to them for prayer. We did this in the hallway leading to the bedrooms.
Close to three years ago, I had received a gift from my Formation Director, of a hand drawn Manuscript Illustration of the Magnificat from a Carmelite Nun, from our home in Aylesford Priory. She had given it to me as a welcome gift upon entering into the Third Order Of Carmel. I was in awe at the gift, but I had never known exactly where I should hang it. It sat on my dresser for as many years and I found myself asking our Blessed Mother what I should do. Last night, it all came together…
I knew at once, it belonged above the Rosary’s we would use to pray together with.
A few months back, I was asked to make a Rosary by a friend. It had been a while since I had made one,and my hands and fingers usually didn’t work well with the motions it takes to create them. I said yes anyway. I also told him God willing, I would do it for him. I was able to make one, and the make more, and more and more. Its turned into a beautiful little calling to do this work. Especially since its difficult for my hands to do this, but while I am creating them, I am praying them, and focusing on our Lord and not my hands, but His. The little rosary I had made for a friend, turned into a Ministry in which I have sent them to city’s across the USA, to Africa, Malaysia, and other parts of the world.
All from a simple yes to God.
There are many more pieces that I can place into this story today, but as our Holy Mother did, I feel a need to do also. To ponder them in my heart. Not in fear of how the last twenty of so years of our Lords converting my heart have come together in this life. Nor the journey in searching for Him, but in Awe of the Epiphany.
May we always recount the beauty of the Word made Flesh, Jesus Christ and celebrate with Him for all eternity with that same joy our Holy Mother Mary had at the moment she first seen Him at His birth along with the same Love she had in her heart for Him, the moment she said yes to Abba Father, through the Angel Gabriel’s message. Knowing, He is always with us.
Hope! Peace! Joy! Love, for all eternity in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
Thank you Lord. Thank you Mama Mary. I love you too.
Sound the trumpet in Zion; the day of the Lord is near; he comes to save us, alleluia.
It is now the hour for you to wake from sleep, for our salvation is closer now than when we first accepted the faith. The night is far spent, the day draws near. Let us cast off deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. – Romans 13:11-12
The words we don’t hear enough today, backed up by action. “I’m sorry” and “I forgive you”.
The entire world today seems to be on an “Escalator”. The anger and outrage at everything is so thick, you can see it like a fog rolling in, forgetting that not every “escalator” goes up when we get on.
Newton’s Third Law: For every action there is an equal and opposite re-action. Looking at this today in society, one can easily assess that for every action there is blown out of proportion over re-action.
“You offended me” is the phrase of the day and one that can be only followed by “I’m calling my attorneys”. Or, “You don’t deserve to live because you offended me”. That last line can be seen from the gang ridden streets of Chicago all the way to the Middle East, as its no different. Society as a whole, is staring to mimic a perpetual sandbox fight of six year olds in which everyone throws their sucker in the sand and stomps away to get the older brother to beat up the perceived evil kid who called someone a name or dare to knock down a “sand castle” created.
To be “Offended” is to be resentful or annoyed, typically as a result of a perceived insult. What is behind that? Pride. A deep rooted, nasty, maggoty pride that needs to be cut out completely. To do this takes humility.
When I hear souls today try to use the key trigger words like, Crusades, Molestation by Priests, Inquisition and the anti-Catholic mantra of the day, as a means of looking for anything they can grasp, as a means to make the entire faith look bad, or offend me personally, I pity them for the simple fact of what they can not see, that my faith isn’t based on the mistakes nor sins, little or big, of anyone. My faith is built on and in, the Love that Jesus Christ has for us all. On His cross, the words that left His lips, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”.
What comes with forgiveness? Forgiveness is the biggest, baddest weapon on the face of this earth. There is nothing stronger then it when it is given for and out of love for the other. It cuts to the heart of the problem and allows two souls to speak and not scream. It immediately deescalates all situations in which the soul can be placed in when it is received from the party it is given to. When it is not received, the soul giving it, not only places it firmly in our Lords hands, but receives the peace needed from our Lord to continue without any need for the receiver to acknowledge the forgiveness given as the soul understand it has done all it could and peace is achieved.
May our Lord bring His peace this Christmas, to all who seek it, through humility, in saying we are sorry, showing we are sorry and accepting the forgiveness that is given.
On this past Sunday, my family and I were blessed to attend Holy Mass at Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala, which has been deemed as a Holy Door pilgrimage site. I had found this out about a week ago, while attending Holy Mass on my birthday, which turned out to be a Holy Mass celebrated for the Immaculate Conception.
My health problems have been flaring up, even in recent days, so for me to actually make it, with my entire family, on the day the Holy Door was blessed and opened, along with attending Holy Mass after, I consider a HUGE gift of our Lord. I cried. For many years, close to twenty, of asking, seeking, wondering, repenting, lamenting, praying and crying, became rejoicing. Its not to say that simply by me walking through that door means my conversion of heart is over, but it reached a point in letting go. Letting go of the past and accepting the mercy and justice of our Lord. It reached a “growing” point that only our Lord can measure.
Saturday night before hand, I found myself looking at different religious art on the internet. This is something I love to do. My husband and I don’t have much money, so being able to see the beautiful paintings and other items on the internet gives me an outlet, to spend time with our Lord in a way that is very personal. We scroll through different sites and He leads me through different countries and far away museums showing me all the wonderful artwork that I would never be able to see in any other way. We found this painting below, of our Lord as the Holy Child in the Tabernacle.
Going back to Sunday’s Holy Mass, along with walking through the Holy Door. Fr. Peter came out and the doors were shut. Holy Mass began outside, he blessed the doors, the hammer hit them and they were opened so Mass could continue. The crowd processed inside through them and Holy Mass continued. As Father began his Homily, it was all about “The Waiting”. He mentioned a list of things we wait for, and as he did, I whispered to my husband, I had been waiting for this day for close to twenty years. I would love to say that every Holy Mass I have ever attended is etched in the forefront of my memory, but all have not. There are many! But, not all of them can hold a position like this one has.
When father continued his “Waiting” homily, I listened intently putting in perspective of the past 2015 years since our Lord rose from the dead. In the last, minuscule in comparison, 49 years of my life. then again in the “waiting” to receive our Lord in the Eucharist while out of communion. Waiting for doctors test results. Waiting to have tests done. Coming around then, to the mercy of our Lord, for giving me the time to wait.
As Holy Mass concluded, I found myself in His peace. There was a moment when I realized I had a busy week ahead with Doctor appointments and forgot all about the pain I was having. I thought how beautiful it would be, to be able to receive Anointing of the Sick, since I had just received our Lord and walked through the Holy Doors. It had been a while since I had receive Anointing and being that my condition may need surgery, what a beautiful day to have this done. It wasn’t as if I NEEDED to get this done NOW. That “feeling” wasn’t present. I was not pushing for this. It was as if it was a suggustion to my soul that really became something I should do, but, only if it could be done, it would be good.
As we were leaving the Church, I told my husband I was going to ask Father if I could receive Anointing. I waited for the crowd to pass me by, and when it became thin and father wasn’t bombarded with souls, with only a few souls left, I approached Father and asked him. He told me he had to be at the airport within thirty minutes to catch a flight and told me, VERY humbly and graciously, that I could call the office in the morning and one of the other priests would be able to do just that for me ASAP since my first appointment was on Tuesday. He told me he would DEFINITELY keep me in his prayers as he was about to rush off. I pray no one takes this as a NON act of Mercy as I can see, it truly was our Lord at work through him, telling me no. I was at peace with his answer, and thought how I would be able to just attend the next day, and ask my Parish Priest for the Sacrament. My family and I left and had a few moments at home, “waiting”, before my older daughter had to be at our home Parish for singing in Festival of Carols.
As we arrived at our Parish, the Church was a bit dark as we walked in, I dipped my hand in the holy water font and genuflected turning to our Lord in the Tabernacle. To my surprise, the doors of the Tabernacle were wide open, and our Lord had been moved for this event. We took our seats in the pews, and “waited”. After a few moments, I noticed my Pastor mingle with others. I went to him and asked him, if he had time after, if he could give me the Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick. He graciously said yes that it wouldn’t be a problem.
The caroling was beautiful and at times, everyone in attendance was asked to stand and sing along. Between carols, we reflected on scripture readings and Gospels, ending the afternoon with a beautiful sense and understanding of the magnitude and meaning of our Lords birth, and the time spent by many souls “waiting” for Him, before His birth.
When all was over, my “waiting” for the Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick, was over as well. Father called me to the back of the Church. We were standing next to the Baptismal Font facing the Altar. I looked up the aisle to the Tabernacle of our Lord, behind the Altar which the doors were wide open. As Father began the prayers over me, that painting of the Holy Child Jesus in the Tabernacle, very vividly, came to mind. Some things, with His grace, you just know.
Praise, honor and glory to our Lord, Jesus Christ, now and forever.
I could not agree more… As this “idolatry” is where our Lord called me from.
Walter Brueggemann on Idolatry – ANNOTATE
God and guns? Old Testament scholar and theologian, Walter Brueggemann, shines a light on nationalism and idolatry in the American church.
Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord alone! Therefore, you shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength. Take to heart these words which I enjoin on you today. Drill them into your children. Speak of them at home and abroad, whether you are busy or at rest.
Gaudete Sunday /ɡaʊˈdeɪteɪ/ (pronounced with three syllables: gow-day-tay) is the third Sunday of Advent
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say, rejoice.
Indeed, the Lord is near.
There have been many things that have taken place in the life of my family, the world, and in general for all society, that in many cases could be seen and are seen as tragic. In the silence and pain of all our suffering, one thing is True. Our Lord is with us, He knows our suffering and He is with us through it. He is King of all suffering as none can compare with His.. As my last post sated:
This morning I am filled with a peace that only our Lord can give and I am grateful. This wonderful peace today is born from knowing that no matter what may come, in Christ, nothing can take away the JOY of knowing He is Lord. “Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.”