25 Feb 2018

God, Love and Clouds



Today's Gospel, Mark 9:2 through 10, describes the Transfiguration. I'll be talking about that. Partly. Also Peter, perceptions, and laundry detergent.

It seems like a better idea than getting upset that not everybody calls the second Sunday in Lent "Transfiguration Sunday."

Or that some folks read this part of the Gospel on a different Sunday. Or that we had a different second Sunday Gospel reading last year. Or that our Feast of the Transfiguration is August 6 this year. And is a Monday.

Occasions for angst abound. I'd rather look at what today's Gospel says and what's been said about it. Then think for a bit and see what happens.

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

23 Feb 2018

Oxygen, Alien Life

We haven't found extraterrestrial life. But we're still finding planets circling other stars. Thousands of them.

Some of those planets couldn't possibly support life as we know it. But some might.

Atomic oxygen may be a good biosignature: evidence of life. That's what some scientists said in a recent paper. If they're right, we may be a step closer to finding life in this universe.

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

22 Feb 2018

21 Feb 2018

'I just want a place at the feet of Jesus.' Sunday Reflections, 2nd Sunday of Lent, Year B'



Transfiguration, Blessed Fra Angelico [Web Gallery of Art]

Readings (New American Bible: Philippines, USA)
Readings (Jerusalem Bible: Australia, England & Wales, India, Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, Scotland, South Africa)
Gospel Mark 9:2-10 (NRSV, Anglicised Catholic Edition)

Six days later, Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain apart, by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no one on earth could bleach them. And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, who were talking with Jesus. Then Peter said to Jesus, ‘Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.’ He did not know what to say, for they were terrified. Then a cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud there came a voice, ‘This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!’ Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus.
As they were coming down the mountain, he ordered them to tell no one about what they had seen, until after the Son of Man had risen from the dead. So they kept the matter to themselves, questioning what this rising from the dead could mean.
Assumpsit Iesus Petrum


Sebastián de Vivanco (Ávila, 1551 - Salamanca, 1622)
Música Reservata de Barcelona directed by Bruno Turner
Assumpsit Iesus Petrum, et Iacobum et Ioannem fratrem eius, et duxit eos in montem excelsum seorsum, et transfiguratus est ante eos.
Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain apart, by themselves.
Et ecce vox de nube dicens: His est Filius meus dilectus, in quo mihi bene complauci, ipsum audite.
And from the cloud there came a voice, ‘Thisis my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!’ (Mark 10: 2,7).


Clement Shahbaz Bhatti [Wikipedia]
(9 September 1968 - 2 March 2011)

In today's first reading God asks Abraham to sacrifice his only son 'on a height that I will point out to you'. We can only imagine the heartbreak of Abraham being asked by God to give offer his only son by Sarah his wife, born when both of them were very old. But God wasn't looking for the life of Isaac but for Abraham to submit himself to God's will, no matter the consequences. Abraham's sacrifice of his own will made him 'our Father in faith', as the Roman Canon says, the Father of countless Jews and Christians

Continue here.

Seeking God’s Forgiveness During Lent


Lent is an excellent time for seeking God’s forgiveness, via the Sacrament of Reconciliation. In this sacrament, God cleanses us from our sins and reunites us to Christ. Although you may be apprehensive at the onset of disclosing your sins to priest, it is really Christ in whom you are confessing your sins, as the priest is acting in persona Christi, in the person of Christ. You will exit the Confessional filled with God’s graces of gratitude, humility, joy and peace.

As a Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) Coordinator for my parish, I work with people coming from other Christian faiths, (or no faith), who wish to consider becoming Catholic. One of the most common questions I get is “Why do Catholics confess their sins to a priest? Why can’t you just ask God directly for forgiveness?” To answer these questions, this video from Bustedhalo.com gives the best answers: Read more...

What I Learned from giving up shopping for Lent


What do you DO?
Three Questions

but back to the series...

"Three things are necessary for man's salvation," said Thomas Aquinas, "to know what he ought to believe, to know what he ought to desire, and to know what he ought to do."

In this three part series, during Lent, I am going to take apart this quote from Aquinas. In this quote, he begs the question.... actually three questions.

What do you believe?

What do you desire?

What do you do?

These are the three essential questions for faith and for salvation.  Aquinas said it: it must be true!  :0)

This year during the season of Lent, this will be the focus of my conversations. 


Today, I'm discussing what we do.


How's the 'no shopping' going for Lent?

Well, it's interesting. It is really opening my eyes!  

read the rest here

Centering Prayer for a Centered Lent

As we hear the latest news reports, we might wonder, Where is God in all of this? As we struggle with personal calamities or are heartbroken by hardships our loved ones are facing, we might ask, “Where are you, God?” The answer to these questions is God is omnipresent–living and active everywhere. As Paul said, “In him we live and move and have our being.” Becoming more conscious of this truth is a good goal for Lent as we strive to renew our spiritual life. One place where God dwells is in the deep center of our very selves. Jesus promised, “I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you” (John 14:20). St. John of the Cross lamented that we seldom give thought to this mind-blowing mystery. Coming in touch with God in our hearts makes us more aware of his hand at work in the world. It also brings forth in us the fruits of peace and joy no matter how stressful our life.  A prayer practice that cultivates being sensitive to God at the core of our being is centering prayer. Click to continue

20 Feb 2018

Takeaway Lessons from Olympic Athletes

The Olympics are here! Have you been watching? I’ve watched some: snow boarding, a little of the sking, and my favorite, figure skating.


Image by PublicDomainPictures (2013) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

I am always amazed at the level of talent and effort put in by the Olympic athletes, and all serious athletes, really. There’s a reason St. Paul often used the analogy of athletes for the spiritual life. They are a great example of what we need to succeed in the spiritual life and in life in general. Here’s three of them: READ MORE

WHAT'S WEALTH WORTH?

A REFLECTION FOR LENT
WHAT IS WEALTH WORTH?

19 Feb 2018

David's Talk at his Book Launch of Wisdom from the Christian Mystics

I hope Association of Catholic Women Bloggers continue to indulge me with another podcast. 

David gave a talk at his Book Launch of Wisdom from the Christian Mystics - How to Pray the Christian Way on 15th February 2018 at The Athenaeum, Pall Mall, London.

"A Ground-breaking Spiritual Classic" - From The Catholic Universe Christmas Edition 2017 -  Michael Winterbottom, deputy editor
 David Torkingtons latest book - Wisdom from the Christian Mystics has already been described in superlatives by reviewers, even before it has been officially launched at the Athenaeum, Pall Mall.  Kevin Grant, the former Editor in Chief of the Catholic Universe and  former Master of the Catholic Writer's Guild simply called it, 'a masterpiece'. For a writer and a poet, who is so careful with words, it is remarkable that in his endorsement of the book he even suggests that the author could be canonized for writing it - hopefully not in the near future! We need to hear much more from a writer whose books have been declared mandatory reading by Sr Wendy Beckett. Usually such worthy books are beyond the comprehension of the ordinary punters in the pews, but not the books of this author.  please find the podcast here....

Introductory Talk at David's Book Launch

I hope Association of Catholic Women Bloggers will indulge me by listening to a podcast rather than reading a blog.

Introductory talk at Book Launch of Wisdom from the Christian Mystics -  How to Pray the Christian Way
by Professor Henry Mayr- Harting - Emeritus Regius Professor of Ecclesiastical History, Oxford, England.
at The Athenaeum, 107 Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5ER
on Thursday 15th February 2018
Professor Mayr-Harting gives his impressions and his review of the book..... not without humour......
Wisdom from the Christian Mystics - How to Pray the Christian Way
Published by Circle Books of Winchester, UK and Washington, USA   Please find the podcast here.....

Columban Fr John Lagomarsino RIP


Fr John Lagomarsino [Source]
(6 November 1939 - 3 February 2018)


John Lagomarsino was born on 6 November 1939 in Sacramento, California, USA, to Louis L. Lagomarsino and Helen (Higgins) Lagomarsino. He is survived by his older brother, Dr Paul Lagomarsino, and his younger sister Mrs Lucia Foster. He attended Sacred Heart Grade School, and later Christian Brothers High School (1953-55) as well as Sacramento Senior High School (1955-57). Afterwards, he attained a BA in History from Sacramento State College.

Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, Sacramento  [Wikipedia]

In 1961 John joined the Peace Corps and was among the first group assigned to the Philippines. There he met the Columbans while teaching English as a Second Language in Ilog, Negros Occidental.


He returned to the United States in 1963 and applied to the Columban seminary. He began his studies at St Columban’s College and Seminary in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin. His Spiritual Year (1964-65) was spent at the Columban seminary in Bristol, Rhode Island, now a retirement home for Columbans. Later, he studied Philosophy and Theology at St Columban’s Major Seminary, Milton, Massachusetts. He completed theology studies at St John Archdiocesan Seminary, Brighton, Massachusetts, where he received a Bachelor of Divinity degree in December 1969. With his Columban classmates he participated in the deaconate program in the Diocese of St Thomas, which covers the American Virgin Islands, under the guidance of Frs George Nolan and Thomas Normanly.

St Thomas, US Virgin Islands [Wikipedia]

Father John was ordained on 13 June 1970, at Sacred Heart Church, Sacramento, by Most Rev. Alden J Bell, Bishop of Sacramento. In September of that year, he returned to the Philippines where he began parish work in Isabela, Negros Occidental. After two years he went to Kabankalan and then to Dacongcogon. He later served as President of Binalbagan Catholic College and as Bursar at the Columban House in Batang, Himamaylan.

Continue here.

Does a Random Act of Kindness Really Do Any Good?


Did you know that Saturday was Random Act of Kindness Day? Might someone have provided you with a random act of kindness that simply made you smile? If so, please share the experience in the comments section below. We could all use a little good news about now. It would be nice to know that some people are out there doing good for others. How grand it would be if we applied the principle of Random Act of Kindness Day to our everyday lives! Oh, just think of what a nicer world it would be, if we were all kinder to each other.

Kindness Produces Good Ripples


When someone is kind to you, you naturally want to respond in a positive way. Kindness produces good ripples!!! If everyone did one kind thing for someone else every day, then kindness would spread everywhere. For example, ...Read more...

18 Feb 2018

Mass Murder: No Fast Fix



This year's Ash Wednesday and Valentine's Day were the same day.

Folks exchanged greeting cards. Many got their foreheads marked with ashes. And 17 were killed at a high school.

Someone's already called last Wednesday's mass murder the 'Valentine's Day Massacre of 2018.' The famous Valentine's Day Massacre was in 1929. It happened when a Chicago gang tried resolving a disagreement over bootleg booze. It didn't succeed. Not quite....

...I'm quite sure the 17 folks killed at Stoneman Douglas High School will be missed by their families, friends, and acquaintances....

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

Lent: Not Doing Too Much



Quite a bit happened this week.

We started Lent's 40-day stay with our Lord in the desert. Not literally. That's mentioned in today's Gospel: Mark 1:12-15. I've talked about deserts and Deuteronomy, penance and porridge, before. (February 11, 2018; February 26, 2017)

There's a more technical — and more useful, probably — discussion in Catechism of the Catholic Church 538-540....

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

The Temptations of Christ

16 Feb 2018

Series on Lent pt. 2: What Do You Desire?


A Huge Oopsie

The other day, after picking my oldest up from her volleyball practice (she joined the team last week and will begin competing in games in the near future),  I let the kids play in water outside because despite being February, we had the rare 70 degree day.  They were squirting the hose, and playing and laughing.  I put Conrad down for his nap, checked my iPhone, then went outside, to find no one in the backyard.  I called for Annabel (the toddler) but she was nowhere to be found.


I looked in the front yard first, then ran upstairs and asked Molly and Frances where Annabel (and Anders and Madeleine) were.


read the rest at tacywilliamsbeck.com

#MICHAELSTRONG

I’d like you to meet Michael.  He’s one of my heroes.



Michael is the nephew of my second-born son’s wife, the third-born of her sister's six children. He just turned nine years old and I am going on sixty; but believe me when I say that when I grow up, I want to be just like him.  When you hear his story, you will undoubtedly feel the same way.

T-shirts were made for Michael's friends and family to wear in support while he fights the toughest battle of his young life against a bitter foe, a disease that has ravaged his body but not his spirit.  The shirts have this logo on the front: #MICHAELSTRONG


And oh, is he ever strong!  His poor body has been through the wringer ever since he was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer, T-cell leukemia, in March of 2017.  He's gone through a series of intense chemo treatments with their merciless and horrendous side effects, treatments that would test the spirit of a person of any age. 

To read more about Michael and his incredible faith and courage, here is the full article at String of Pearls.

Mars and Beyond

Falcon Heavy's test flight last week wasn't perfect. But I'll call it a success. That's good news for SpaceX. Not my opinion: the largely-successful flight.

The test flight's dummy payload included an actual dummy. "Starman" is that mannequin wearing a spacesuit at the wheel of a red Tesla roadster.

I'll be talking about that, how I see the news, technology, and humanity's new horizon....

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

'Their blood confesses Christ.' Sunday Reflections, First Sunday of Lent, Year B


The Temptation of Christ, Tintoretto [Web Gallery of Art]

Readings (New American Bible: Philippines, USA)
Readings (Jerusalem Bible: Australia, England & Wales, India, Ireland, Zealand, Pakistan, Scotland, South Africa)
Gospel Mark 1:12-15 (NRSV, Anglicised Catholic Edition)

The Spirit immediately drove Jesus out into the wilderness. He was in the wilderness for forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him.
Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.’

Ordination of Columban to the Priesthood

Please pray for the Reverend Erl Dylan J. Tabaco who will be ordained to the priesthood on Saturday 17 February in Holy Rosary Parish, Agusan, Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines, where Columbans worked for many years. May the Lord grant him many fruitful years as a Columban missionary priest.

Responsorial Psalm (NAB Lectionary, Philippines, USA)


One of my teachers in the Columban seminary in the 1960s was a saintly priest, Fr Edward McCormack. Father Ted, as we knew him, spent most of his life as a priest teaching Scripture to Columban seminarians in Ireland and the USA. But he taught our class Latin.


Continue here.

15 Feb 2018

Hello


Image by 472301 (2016) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain


Hello, Carol D'Annunzio here. I have been a long-time reader of the Association of Catholic Bloggers and very happy to have the opportunity to share my thoughts and posts with all of you here.

About me:

I am married for almost 15 years to a wonderful, truck-driving guy named Michael and we hail from New Jersey. Together we have an almost 13 year old whom I homeschool and an adorable rescued Dachshund-Chihuahua named Nugget. I am passionate about my faith and writing and love being able to combine the two on my blog, Simple Catholic Living.

I look forward to connecting with some one you. God bless.

My Novel Amaranth Free on Kindle




From February 15-19, my Christian novel Amaranth will be free on Amazon Kindle.

https://www.amazon.com/Amaranth-J-Avila-ebook/dp/B00WSCJT64

About the story: Would you take an elixir that made you perpetually young and physically immortal?

What if the price for it was your eternal soul?

Billionaire Desmond Sceller acquires such a wonder drug. But when eighty-year-old Marie Long is rejuvenated by it against her will, she quickly discovers unending beauty and youth is not the paradise it seems. Sceller, however, intends on using the elixir to entice all mankind into submitting to his tyrannical control. When Marie and her grandson Peter unearth this evil scheme, they soon discover that only an extraordinary sacrifice on their part can free humanity from Sceller’s nefarious plan.

For ages 13 and up.

During this promotional offer, my other Christian novels—Rain from Heaven, Nearer the Dawn, and Cherish—will also be just 99¢ each on Kindle with all net profits going to charity.

14 Feb 2018

Origin of Creation: How Did the Universe (and You) Begin?

As you watch a program about the millions and millions of galaxies that lie beyond our own, or when you are adrift in the daze before falling asleep, you might wonder, “How did everything begin?” The answer is, “No one knows.” This lack of knowledge, however, does not stop creative human beings from proposing theories. Currently I’m working on a book that had me investigating how people explain the existence of the universe. Now at the outset of this post, since it is Valentine’s Day, I state the Christian position: All of creation is a tremendous act of love from God, who is best defined as love. It is an overflowing of his divine love. God fashioned us, his children, in his likeness and created the world as our home. Just how God did this remains a mystery, since no one was present to make a video of it.  Click to continue

Hearts and Ashes; Love and Mercy For the Taking


Wow! Ash Wednesday & Valentine’s Day on the same day! Hearts and Ashes in one fell swoop! Today is the day when we show our love for our spouses and loved ones, with valentines. It is also a day that we show our love for Christ, with ashes on our foreheads; marking ourselves as belonging to Christ. Today, we can consider the ashes on our foreheads as our own personal valentine to God, acknowledging Christ’s sacrifice on the cross because of His love for us.

Talk about bittersweet days! No hearts filled with assorted chocolates this year! Considering that Ash Wednesday is a day of fasting and abstinence, there is no going out to dinner tonight either. Yet, the love of Christ is ever-present on this day, and we soak it up. I’ll give up a candy heart, and a steak dinner, knowing that Jesus loves me. There is no better Valentine than that! My fasting and abstinence is a small sacrifice of self-giving love back to Jesus for His sacrifice on the Cross.

Read more...

13 Feb 2018

Three Things Are Necessary ... (A Series on Lent, Part One)


Three Questions

"Three things are necessary for man's salvation," said Thomas Aquinas, "to know what he ought to believe, to know what he ought to desire, and to know what he ought to do."

In this three part series, during Lent, I am going to take apart this quote from Aquinas. In this quote, he begs the question.... actually three questions.

What do you believe?

What do you desire?

What do you do?

These are the three essential questions for faith and for salvation.  Aquinas said it: it must be true!  :0)

This year during the season of Lent, this will be the focus of my conversations. I am going to start that conversation here, with part one on my blog!


Let's Talk About Lent

And before we get into that question, I want to discuss Lent for just a minute.  I remember in years past, I heard about a girl who was going to give up creamer in her coffee for Lent. However, it was too tough for her, but she still wanted to honor God by doing some kind of sacrifice during Lent.  She decided to give up creamer in her coffee one day a week.

read the rest here

12 Feb 2018

Fr. Albert Macpherson O.S.A.,“God You Have Made Us For Yourself“

Almighty God, you have made us for yourself,
and our hearts are restless
till they find their rest in you;
so lead us by your Spirit
that in this life we may live to your glory
and in the life to come enjoy you forever;-  St. Augustine


Over the years, I have attended many retreats and masses, followed by healing prayer led by Fr. Albert MacPherson. For over 30 years, Father Albert MacPherson O.S.A. has traveled the globe on a healing mission. He takes his special healing ministry to parishes and provides parish communities with healing Masses and retreats. One mass I attended a few years ago was especially memorable. After mass, dressed in a black cassock, using holy water, blessed salt, holy oil and traditional prayers of the Church, Father simply blesses the people with God performing wonderful miracles in his wake.

A Storytellers Guide to a Grace Filled Life – Book Review


I must start this post by telling you that I have been a friend and fan of Tony Agnesi for approximately four years now. Several years ago, as a fledgling Catholic blogger, I reached out to him, seeking advice. You see, Tony has an awesome blog over at tonyagnesi.com, where he blogs about virtue as well. Where I write more from a theological/academic point of view on virtue, Tony writes from experience. I once asked him, “How do you come up with such great stories? You are quite creative!” His reply, “Those things really happened to me!” God uses Tony, daily, to reach out to the less fortunate; to witness to the faith; and to use his gift for storytelling to reach the hearts of many. In A Storytellers Guide to a Grace Filled Life, we see Tony Agnesi at work in God’s Garden of life.

A Storytellers Guide to a Grace Filled Life


… captures the best of Tony Agnesi’s stories aimed at showing you how to find God’s Grace in your own life. As a master storyteller, Agnesi shares with us stories of virtue and grace found in all aspects of life; from the family, to the workplace, to the streets of your town. With each story, he offers... Read more...

11 Feb 2018

Did Hank Done It This Way?

DID HANK DONE IT THIS WAY?

Reflections For The Soul


Skydiving and Lent



Lent is fast approaching. How I see it and what I do is up to me. Ash Wednesday is next week, so I don't have much time to decide.

Christians, Catholic and otherwise, in my culture generally change what we eat for this season. I'm a Catholic, so I've got rules.

But not all that many. Mostly they're guidelines. I put a link to my territory's rules about diet under 'Fast & Abstinence' near the end of this post....

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

10 Feb 2018

Life is all about opening oneself ...even to God! ( VIDEO Spanish) La Vida es apertura, inclusive a Dios.

 
 
 


Por: Lourdes de Domenzain

From Writing Blog Posts and Making Podcasts to Full-Time for God


I have worked with Pete Socks online for years.  Pete is an example of someone who volunteered to serve the Church by writing articles on his blog and for online Catholic sites without pay for years till God opened the door to a full-time paying job creating  Catholic podcasts and helping manage BreadBox Media.
He is a humble guy, was a manager at a factory, and a happily married father of five who converted to the Catholic faith in 1996. After a few years, he found himself simply going through the motions, just trudging to weekly Mass.  God had other plans, though. Pete experienced a reconversion when he stumbled on a book by Father Larry Richards and then attended one of his conferences. It was a turning point. Pete had discovered the key to reviving his lackluster faith in books; he began reading voraciously, a book a week, to nourish his spirit. In 2012, he decided to start a self-hosted blog writing book reviews, writing a review each week.

9 Feb 2018

Firestorm Comet?

Scientists figure a comet started breaking up about 12,800 years back. Nothing unusual there. Many comets break up while they're this close to our sun.

This time Earth got in the way before the fragments spread out much.

Fire rained from the sky, consuming forest and meadow alike.

Sounds a bit like Genesis 19:1, now that I think of it. Except we didn't start building cities until a few millennia later. Or maybe we haven't found our first cities yet. And that's another topic or two....

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

8 Feb 2018

‘I do choose. Be made clean!’ Sunday Reflections, 6th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B



Christ as Saviour, El Greco [Web Gallery of Art]

Readings (New American Bible: Philippines, USA)
Readings (Jerusalem Bible: Australia, England & Wales, India, Ireland, New Zealand, Pakistan, Scotland, South Africa)
Gospel Mark 1:40-45 (NRSV, Anglicised Catholic Edition)

A leper came to Jesus begging him, and kneeling he said to him, ‘If you choose, you can make me clean.’ Moved with pity, Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, ‘I do choose. Be made clean!’ Immediately the leprosy left him, and he was made clean. After sternly warning him he sent him away at once, saying to him, ‘See that you say nothing to anyone; but go, show yourself to the priest, and offer for your cleansing what Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.’ But he went out and began to proclaim it freely, and to spread the word, so that Jesus could no longer go into a town openly, but stayed out in the country; and people came to him from every quarter.

Dr Carlo Urbani- (1956 - 2004) [Wikipedia]

Towards the end of February 2003 Dr Carlo Urbani, an Italian, went to Vietnam, representing the World Health Organisation, to investigate an American businessman who was showing unusual symptoms. It turned out to be severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), a highly contagious virus. The man who discovered this new disease died from it himself about a month later on 29 March. In a conscious moment, while in the ICU in a hospital in Bangkok, he asked for a priest to give him the Last Rites.
Continue here.

7 Feb 2018

Get Your House In Order

Last week the kids and I met Tom at the church for an event. Fifteen minutes before we had to leave a neighbor kid came to the door. It was her birthday so she brought everyone cupcakes. She left and my kids were scarfing down the chocolate cupcakes before we had to leave. Thick globs of chocolate icing ended up on my new rug. We were supposed to leave the house by this time but instead I was frantically scrubbing my rug trying to get the stains out. In the hectic chaos, I guess I forgot to lock the front door.   Continue Reading@ Beautifulthorns>

Lent is a Week Away! Are You Ready to Make It Fruitful?


Can you believe it? Lent is only one week away! We’ve barely left the Christmas season, and we are about to walk the journey, with Christ, to Calvary. Are you prepared to enter the Lenten season? Are you ready to make the most of it?

Things You Can Do to Make Your Lent Fruitful


  1. Prayer: Make a point to set aside a few minutes each day to pray. If you have enough time to say a full Rosary, great! But, sometimes, the day gets away from us. So, a vow to say a single Our Father, Hail Mary, and Glory Be is a commitment I think we all could easily make. Prayer is talking with God. He wants to hear from you!
  2. Fasting: At a minimum, make the effort to fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. By fasting, I mean a reduced breakfast and lunch, and a full dinner. No desserts! If you can do this on a set day of the week, once weekly during Lent, all the better! Fasting helps us to understand that without God, we are nothing. It is God who provides for us: our homes, our jobs, our food, everything!
  3. Almsgiving: Make a point to reach out to the less fortunate. Clean your closets and donate some clothes/goods to the poor. Donate your time, money and/or food to a food pantry. Volunteer for a ministry at your Church. Remember what Jesus said, “whatever you did for the least of these, my brothers, you did for Me” (Matt 25:40). Be charitable toward others.
Read more...

THE COCKTAIL QUEEN

Lent: Time for Spring Cleaning

Are you weary of snow, slush, and black ice? Are you tired of putting on layers of clothing to protect against the cold? Take heart! Spring is March 20—only a few weeks away. Then it will be time for spring cleaning, when we move the sofa and wash the windows. We are quickly approaching Lent, which is called the springtime of the soul. It’s a time to do some serious spiritual cleaning.The undertaking will not be difficult because we have a willing partner. The Gospel recounts that once a leper said to Jesus, “If you wish, you can make me clean,” and he heard, “I do wish it.” And at Jesus’ touch, the man’s body marred with ugly sores became as good as new. We too can appeal to Jesus to help renew us, and we can be confident that he will respond eagerly. Click to continue

6 Feb 2018

Creating My Own Saint Quotes With Images


I grew frustrated with quotes from the saints paired with pictures of gloomy saints with their eyes rolled back in their heads. Even worse, are insipid flowers surrounding profound spiritual insights. So, using the free site Pixter, I searched for great Catholic art, sharp, colourful graphics and paired them with some of my favourite…… Continue reading

God, Love and Clouds

Today's Gospel, Mark 9:2 through 10 , describes the Transfiguration. I'll be talking about that. Partly. Also Peter, perceptions,...