Chocolate Christmas

(St. Paul’s Church and its new addition. The St. Faustina Adoration Chapel is to your left.)

I thought this was going to be a short and simple look at my parish's polka Mass and the Adoration Chapel in St. Paul's parish.

Then I wondered when and where the first polka Mass was. That reminded me of my salad days, ancient philosophers, a Chinese emperor and liturgical dance. Which brought me back to the Eucharist and adoration....

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Your Yes?

On December 9th I posted My Yes to God! episode of Opening God's Word and asked if you would post a comment about a time when you said Yes! to God.

Thank you to Dehaana for sharing your Yes! in committing to the Walking with Purpose bible study!

It is so uplifting to hear how other people have said--or are struggling to say--Yes to God!

Please drop a comment here on this blog so we can all be inspired by your Yes!

Janet Cassidy


Death Changes Us

To my friends who have lost a parent in adulthood, I apologize.I am sorry for not being there for you, for not realizing the hole that was left in your life.I apologize for not being cognizant of how everything shifted and the sadness losing your loved one surely brought.

I could not have known, not really, until it happened to me.Losing a parent in adulthood, especially leaves one feeling incomplete.It is not that it is overwhelming on a daily basis, but the fact is, we are forever altered.

Death changes us.
I wish I could say I have found the secret to moving forward, but I have not.The only thing I can say for sure from everything I have read and experienced is that it is best not to suppress whatever feelings or emotions rise up.
Are you feeling angry? Anxious? Do you need to cry?Rather than denying those feelings or trying to put them in a box, acknowledge them for what they are, part of the process of grief.It helps me to do a self-check to see where I am in the process and if w…

A different face of the homofobic Church (Spanish) Una cara diferente de la Iglesia.


Imagine It's You


'The deaf hear.' Sunday Reflections, 3rd Sunday of Advent, Year A

St John the Baptist in the Prison Juan Fernández de Navarrete[Web Gallery of Art]

Readings(New American Bible: Philippines, USA)
Readings(Jerusalem Bible: Australia, England & Wales, India [optional], Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, Scotland, South Africa)
GospelMatthew 11:2-11 (New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition, Canada)
When John heard in prison what the Messiah was doing, he sent word by his disciples and said to him, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or are we to wait for another?’ Jesus answered them, ‘Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor have good news brought to them. And blessed is anyone who takes no offence at me.’
As they went away, Jesus began to speak to the crowds about John: ‘What did you go out into the wilderness to look at? A reed shaken by the wind? What then did you go out to see? Someone dressed in soft robes? Look, those w…

Find Joy This Christmas Season

Joy is a deep and lasting feeling of contentment and happiness graced by the Holy Spirit. For me, deep and abiding joy comes to me when I reflect on God’s love for me – that unconditional love that will never end. I also experience a deep and abiding sense of joy when I think of how much my husband loves me, because his love for me is a manifestation of God’s love for me. My list could go on, but I have a question for you. How do you find joy in your life? Christmas – The Season of Joy We also find joy at Christmastime, when we reflect on the Word made flesh – the Incarnation. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him might not perish but might have eternal life” (John 3:16). Knowing that God loves us so much that He would sacrifice His Son to death by a Cross, for our sins, is a love unmatched by anyone. This love brings us ... Read more...

Feeling Lost? (OGW, 039, Mt. 18)

Are you struggling with past sins?
Have you rationalized your personal life so that you are comfortable and happy, even though you know it is not wholly aligned with God?
Do you think you are a bad person, unworthy of forgiveness?
Does God even care about YOU?
In today’s episode of Opening God’s Word I talk about this and about the purpose of Christmas and the role of Jesus by using today’s reading from the Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 18, about the Lost Sheep.
If your feelings of guilt are overwhelming you, making you feel that God could never forgive you for the kind of life you have led (or are leading), you will want to check out today’s podcast.
I encourage you to share it with a friend because this is a wondrous time and today’s reading is a good reminder that Jesus is still looking for us!
Have a blessed day in God’s Word!
Janet Cassidy

My Yes! to God! (OGW, 038, Luke 1)

Do you know what the Immaculate Conception is?If not, check out this terrific link that gives a good explanation.
Today, though, I am going to focus on Mary’s Yes! to the angel Gabriel.
Then, I’m going to share with you a significant Yes! I made to God.
And finally, we’re going to talk about YOUR Yes! to God!
You don’t want to miss this episode of Opening God’s Word that will hopefully get you thinking! 
And if you don’t mind, will you please make your comment below as I requested at the end of this podcast?
As always, be sure to share this with a friend!
I hope you have a blessed day in God’s Word!
Janet Cassidy

Molly McBride and the Christmas Pageant - Book Review

Jean Schoonover-Egolf does it again, with the fourth installment of the Molly McBride series. She continuously brings entertaining, yet educational stories to children, teaching them a different virtue in each book. In Molly McBride and the Christmas Pageant, Molly learns all about the virtue of obedience. She has her heart set on taking the leading role of “Mary” in the Christmas pageant, only to learn she has been assigned the role of a sheep! Now, let’s be honest. That’s quite a letdown, if you ask me, especially when you think you deserve the leading role. Yet, we see as the story progresses how important it is for us to be obedient to authority. Molly McBride Learns About Obedience Molly’s teacher helps Molly see the need for obedience. The teacher shows Molly the manger and tells Molly about Mary. She explains what it was like for Mary at such a young age to say “yes” to God and become the mother of Jesus. Molly comes to understand... Read more...

Christian Books


How Will You Answer God's Question? (OGW, 037)

You know the bible is the inspired word of God.You know that it is God revealing himself to us, speaking to us, right?
Well, today, in the Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 9 (verses 27-31) Jesus asks two blind men a question.It is the same question he asks us today.
How will you answer God’s question?
I hope you will tune in for a thought-provoking question that should give you pause to deeply reflect on your own faith.
Do you know someone who has been asking faith-filled questions, or maybe someone who has great doubt?If so, I encourage you to send them a link to these podcasts with a prayer that they will be inspired to continue seeking the One who can heal us.
Have a blessed day in God’s Word!
Janet Cassidy

'So was the Word made incarnation / In Mary’s womb, a son.' Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

The Virgin of the Immaculate Conception El Greco [Web Gallery of Art]
The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, observed on 8 December, is a holyday of obligation in many countries, eg, Ireland, the Philippines. This year it falls on the Second Sunday of Advent, which takes precedence over it. So the Solemnity is transferred to Monday 9 December. However, the obligation to attend Mass does not carry over.
Readings(New American Bible: Philippines, USA)
Readings(Jerusalem Bible: Australia, England & Wales, India [optional], Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, Scotland, South Africa)
GospelLuke 1:26-38 (New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition, Canada)
In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, ‘Greetings, favoured one! The Lord is with you.’But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what…

'I baptize you with water for repentance.' Sunday Reflections, 2nd Sunday of Advent, Year A

Linaioli Tabernacle: St John the Baptist Blessed Fra Angelico [Web Gallery of Art]

Readings(New American Bible: Philippines, USA)
Readings(Jerusalem Bible: Australia, England & Wales, India [optional], Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, Scotland, South Africa)
Gospel Matthew 3:1-12 (New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition, Canada)
In those days John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness of Judea, proclaiming, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.’This is the one of whom the prophet Isaiah spoke when he said, ‘The voice of one crying out in the wilderness:
“Prepare the way of the Lord,make his paths straight.”’

Now John wore clothing of camel’s hair with a leather belt around his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. Then the people of Jerusalem and all Judea were going out to him, and all the region along the Jordan, and they were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. But when he saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism…