Sunday, May 31, 2009
George Tiller, infamous abortionist was shot dead at his church this morning. The details of the story and Mr. Tiller's killer are still coming in. You can click the link for the rest of the story.
All I would like to do here is add my prayers for Tiller as well as his murderer. What this person did is just plain wrong and it does not help the cause for life at all; in fact it can and probably will do more harm.
My opinions aside, I just ask that pro-lifers and all Christians offer their prayers for Tiller, his family, and for Tiller's murderer. May God have mercy on us all.
Here are some other links to Catholic bloggers who report on this type of thing better than I do:
Mark Shea at Catholic and Enjoying It
Creative Minority Report
Eternal rest grant him, O lord, and may perpetual light shine upon him. May he, and all the faithful departed, rest in Your peace. Amen.
*I've closed the combox on this one because I do not want to engage in debate, I just wanted to offer prayer and encourage others to do the same. Thanks for understanding.
Several weeks ago after reading a post on Fr. Mark's blog, Vultus Christi, I began doing as Father suggested and offer a holy hour before the Blessed Sacrament offering prayer and reparation for priests. Since then, this intention has been weighing even more heavily on my heart. Those of you who read this blog know I have written several posts on the importance of praying for priests.
I have found the Holy Spirit to be relentless in this area, and with good reason; our priests need our prayers now more than ever.
Yesterday while I briefly stopped by Twitter, there was a tweet from Adoro, whose tweets I follow, on this topic of praying for priests. We exchanged one or 2 tweets and that was that ~ or so I thought. After I received her reply tweet, I had wanted to ask her about resources for ways to offer prayer for priests, but I was distracted and left Twitterland for that day.
This morning I was skimming through my Google Reader and came upon this post by Adoro. It links to a site titled Priests in Crisis. Today's post on that site is the story of Fr. Gordon MacRae who is serving a 33 year prison sentence for a crime he did not commit. You can read
Fr. Mac Rae's story here or link to it through Adoro's post. If you feel moved to do so, you can leave father a note of encouragement and prayer in the comment box of the site.
I bring all of this to your attention to reiterate my plea of past posts to pray for our priests. We need them desperately and they need us!
This was a bittersweet God Moment for me; on the one hand I am always amazed and overjoyed by how God speaks to and within me, but today it came in the heart-wrenching story of a priest in need.
So let us entrust our priests, especially those who may be in crisis of any kind, to our Blessed Mother who will bring them to her Son.
In the days following my reversion, I found myself very drawn to the devotion of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Both the first post I mentioned, as well as The Sacred Heart of Jesus and Me, do bear a connection in my overall story of return.
Finally, a post that has nothing to to with either of the first two, Our Father's Love Letter is a video post that Scripturally tells of God's immense love for each one of us.
*Thanks, as always to RAnn at This That and the Other Thing for hosting. Click the link for information on how to join the carnival and to read posts by other Catholic bloggers.
The reason I am writing about this particular feast is because it was this day seven years ago that I made the decision to come back to the Church. Now my actually being able to walk back into a church and receive Holy Communion worthily would be about six months down the road, but on this particular day I could no longer resist Christ's invitation to return to Him. What I have come to believe over these last 7 years is that our Blessed Mother was behind it all. She was doing at that moment what she always does; she was leading me back to her Son. Although in my case at this point in time I think there was some dragging by my hair involved ~ at least at the beginning. The date of my reversion is no mere coincidence. Just as Elizabeth was visited by Mary and Jesus, I too had my own moment of visitation.
One thing I began to do almost immediately after this day was I began to pray the Rosary again. The Visitation would now play another key role in my coming back fully into the Church. When I had signed up to make the Rachel's Vineyard retreat for post-abortion healing, I was told that I would need to name my aborted child. Well, all I could think was how am I supposed to name someone I never laid eyes on before? Our Lady took care of this as well. One day as I was praying the Joyful mysteries of the Rosary, just as I began the second mystery of the Visitation, the name Elizabeth~Anne seemed to just find its way into my mind. I knew almost in an instant that I had a daughter and I now also knew her name. Now to some who may read this, it may sound a bit far-fetched or just the wishful thinking of a grieving mother; I assure you this had very little to do with me. I truly felt as though that name had been given to me.
So today as the Church celebrates its birthday, in some ways I also celebrate my own. Yes, there are still some growing pains along the way, but I am so very grateful that I am able to feel them again. And like most school children, I continue to learn something new each day. This has been and continues to be the time of my Visitation.
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Seven years ago, when I finally woke up and answered our Lord's call to return to Him, I almost immediately felt drawn to the Sacred Heart. I could come up with no concrete reason for this feeling; it wasn't the feast day of the Sacred Heart or even the feast of Corpus Christi ~ although it was the last day of May so the month dedicated to the Sacred Heart was about to begin. All of that aside, I didn't need a reason. All I knew was that in Jesus' Heart was where I wanted and needed to be!
Then one day, almost out of nowhere, I received a packet in the mail with a pamphlet of prayers to the Sacred Heart and one of the most striking portraits of the Sacred Heart I had ever seen! (It is the picture at the beginning of this post).
Now what you need to know here is that when I made the decision to return to our Lord and His Church, I did not run to the nearest confessional. Being post-abortive made that very difficult. Between the months of June and August, while I searched for ways to deal with the abortion, all I had was prayer and that picture. In August I found Rachel's Vineyard, but it would be November before I could get on a retreat! So I literally clung to those prayers and that picture. Our Lord heard those prayers and used that time to draw me closer to Him. There were days during those long 6 months that I hungered for the Eucharist. At this point you may be wondering why I didn't just run to the nearest Church and make my confession. The fear, shame and guilt that had built up over those 14 years since the abortion had created a huge roadblock~ I needed to wait for the "safety" of the retreat. Our Lord was very patient and gentle during those months. I continued to pray.
Once I had finally made my confession and returned to Mass, our Lord continued to draw me to His Sacred Heart. I was drawn to daily Mass. I don't just mean that I felt like going; I mean I was drawn ~ felt almost compelled to go! Seven years later this is still the case and when I do miss daily Mass on occasion, I feel it.
The next thing I felt drawn to was Eucharistic Adoration. Those of you who have followed this blog know that I am blessed to be in a parish that has Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration. At first I would go whenever I felt like being close to Jesus. Then one day as I was leaving the chapel, my dear friend who is coordinator of the chapel told me she had 2 hours in need of an adorer; one was Saturdays at 3pm the other was Sundays at midnight. Since I work on Saturdays, I took the midnight slot. I began my regular hour with our Lord at midnight on Sundays Divine Mercy Sunday 2003. The other interesting tidbit about this particular hour is that this was the same time slot I had for Adoration on the Rachel's Vineyard retreat ~ guess Jesus just likes having me around at midnight!
I know that I have kind of rambled through much of this post, but the point is that from that first scared little "yes" that I gave our Lord, He has continued to draw me to His Sacred Heart. I truly find it a refuge; I know that I am always safe there. In this post I have simply wanted to give you a picture of my personal devotion to the Sacred Heart; the article I mentoned at the beginning will give more of the doctrine and history of the devotion. The links throughout the post will also give more information. For the prayers and picture I talked about go here.
I thank our Lord and St. Margaret Mary Alacoque for this devotion. I thank Him for the grace of drawing me into His Sacred Heart through this beautiful devotion. I thank Him above all for the fire of His unfathomable love in His Most Sacred Heart.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us; have mercy on me.
*Painting by Joseph Fanelli
Monday, May 25, 2009
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Friday, May 22, 2009
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
That is the question Fr. Barron answers this week in the third part of his latest series, Answering the Skeptics. This is a huge topic and as Fr. Barron explains, too many angles to it to get into in this brief clip. His answer concentrates on where and how power is obtained in the Church and how two of the greatest women saints obtained that power. (It may not be how you think it is obtained.)
After you listen to Father discuss this topic, you may want to read his article The Fetishism of Dialogue; it is his response to Sunday's Notre Dame Commencement. Some of the comments following the article are also quite interesting.
Sunday, May 17, 2009
So head on over to number 100, Who Would Have Thought, where you will find the links to some of my favorite posts since this past November~ including the one that started it all. For those of you who may be a loyal follower, I will redirect you to one of my favorite meditations, titled "How Do I Trust Thee?".
Be sure to pay RAnn a visit at This, That and the Other... for more Sunday Snippets as well as for information on joining the group.
Thanks for hosting, RAnn!
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Friday, May 15, 2009
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Enjoy and God Bless!
If I Could Just Sit With You Awhile - Todd Agnew
Saturday, May 9, 2009
That being said, what is really called for is prayer and lots of it; Heaven needs to be stormed! I found a link to a novena to St. Joseph over at Fr. Philip's blog. Click his name and it will take you to the link for the novena and the very powerful post that goes with it. The novena began yesterday, but our awesome God does not live in time, so join in whenever you read this. Pray it before the Blessed Sacrament if you can. Those of us who live by the Church's teaching need to make reparation before our Lord.
May God have mercy on Notre Dame, President Obama, and us all.
Friday, May 8, 2009
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
If you missed Part 1, you can retrieve it from my labels under Fr. Barron or go to Word On Fire.
If you haven't heard Fr. Barron before, please check out his site. You can also catch up with the latest on the filming of his Catholicism Project.
I often wonder how many times our Lord has called me and I haven't followed. Oh, I know the blatant sinful times, but what about those daily callings? How many of those do I ignore consciously or unconsciously?
Today as I was perusing the posts in my Google Reader, I came upon one by Fr. John Bartunek at Catholic Spiritual Direction titled the Secret Rendevous. Now I have to admit, while this site is on my follow list, I often just skim or even pass by the posts each day. This morning, however, was different; the title caught my attention. I still felt the urge to pass by because I do need to get to work and wanted to see what else was in the Reader, but I guess you can say I heard the Shepherd's voice saying, "Stop~don't pass this one by!" So I went back and read. There is great depth in what Father Bartunek has written, but where God really had something to say was in the prayer that was included (it's at the end of this post). Our Lord knows that I don't always have the words to say what I want and need to say to him, so sometimes he provides them very concretely as he did this morning.
Christ calls to us in a million different ways and at a million different times each day. As father says in his post, we can continue to pray without ceasing with the desire to do so.
Listen for the Shepherd's voice in your day today; keep the appointment for the "secret rendezvous" with him. You will be glad you did; I know I was.
Christ in My Life
You see all my motives and intentions, but I think sometimes I try to hide from them. Show them to me, Lord. I don’t want anything to get in the way of our friendship. I don’t want to fall into hypocrisy. I want to do all things out of a humble, sincere love for you. With the humility of your heart, Lord, shape my heart…
At times life seems so complicated... but you simplify it. Stay with me, Lord, walk with me; teach me how to love you, to love my neighbor, and to master my own selfish tendencies. With the silence of your heart, speak to my heart…
Teach me to fast, Lord. Teach me to govern my urges and instincts, to be the master of my passions and not their slave. Teach me to be free to give myself to you and to my neighbors. Show me how to make loving sacrifice as much a part of my life as it was a part of yours…
Yours in Christ, Father John Bartunek, LC
You can read Father Bartunek's entire post here; it is definitely worth the read and even some meditation afterward.
Sunday, May 3, 2009
Friday, May 1, 2009
Pray with me, that I may obtain help to work with order, peace, moderation, and patience - and never shirk duty because of weariness or because of difficulties encountered, and that, before all else, I may work with a right intention and with detachment from self, keeping always in mind the hour of my death and the account I must give then for misused time, for neglected talents, for good not done, and for any foolish pride in my success - a fault so fatal to the work of God,
All for Jesus, all through Mary, all in imitation of you , Joseph most faithful! This shall be my motto in life and death.
Psalm 45: Canticle of Love to the King
My heart overflows with a good theme;
I address my verses to the King;
My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.
You are fairer than the sons of men;
Grace is poured upon Your lips;
Therefore God has blessed You forever.
Gird Your sword on Your thigh, O Mighty One,
In Your splendor and Your majesty!
And in Your majesty ride on victoriously,
For the cause of truth and meekness and righteousness;
Let Your right hand teach You awesome things.
Your arrows are sharp;
The peoples fall under You;
Your arrows are in the heart of the King’s enemies.
Your throne, O God, is forever and ever;
A scepter of uprightness is the scepter of Your kingdom.
You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;
Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You
With the oil of joy above Your fellows.
All Your garments are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia;
Out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made You glad.
Kings’ daughters are among Your noble ladies;
At Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir.