Showing posts with the label Beauty

Name That Summer!

© Ron Chapple Stock/Getty Images It was 3:07 on a glorious afternoon in late May. I was sitting in my car with the power turned off and the windows wide open. The baby was dozing in her car seat while we waited in the car line for the school bell to ring, signifying the end of another busy school year and the beginning of sweet, sweet summer. Read my unique tip for enjoying summer with your children at Praying with Grace !

Christmas Musing: Preti's "The Visitiation" and Our Search for the Infinite

When we turned rounded the corner to the left and into the Baroque room at the   Virginia Fine Arts Museum   this morning, my eyes welled with tears. There it was; the painting I had visited the museum for, a painting called "The Visitation" by 17th century Baroque master   Mattia Preti , a Calabrian and a protege of  Caravaggian  naturalism. How fitting the painting first went on display here on Christmas Eve. Keep reading:

How Would We Act If We Really Believed?

When I visited the Cathedral of the Madeleine in Salt Lake City, I stood outside taking pictures before Mass on Saturday evening. I heard runners approaching from my right and looked up to make sure I wasn’t in their way. I saw a crowd of shiny green uniforms running towards me. I had heard that the US Women’s soccer team was playing the Mexico Women’s soccer team, and I smiled as I realized that I was catching a glimpse of the celebrities. I humbly watched as trainers, coaches, and players stopped and genuflected in front of the Cathedral. Read more here...

True Beauty and the Cross

It seems as if everyone nowadays is so  obsessed  with appearance.  Many are trapped in the world that tells them that unless they wear their makeup the "right" way, they'll never be good enough.  Our society tells us that unless we look a certain way, and dress a certain style, and carry ourselves the "popular" way, we'll never be accepted and we'll never be cherished. I beg to differ.  I'm a teenage girl ~ I  know  what's out there, waiting to starve our true spirits and transform us into jealous creatures who are intent on fighting what is a losing battle. For "Dove Evolution" video (This video shows just how much our society has negatively warped the perception of beauty.  In 1.25 minutes, we're shown that an average-looking woman is "airbrushed" into being model-perfect.  It's scary, actually.) It seems like when culture tried to conform us all into the mold of the "perfect person", it threw ou

3 reasons I love Catholicism: Truth, goodness, and beauty

 Micaela at California to Korea is hosting a link-up called "3 Reasons I love Catholicism." You can submit your link all month. There are lots of good submissions, so check them out and join up. My reasons (in this post, anyway) are the triumvirate of truth, goodness, and beauty. I will show you how truth, goodness, and beauty are essential to the Contemplative Homeschool and to seeking God. Fr. Benedict Groeschel, in Spiritual Passages: The Psychology of Spiritual Development "for those who seek" , uses the categories of truth, beauty, goodness, and oneness in a similar way to learning styles or temperaments. They signify to him four ways of relating to God. We can use these categories to help ourselves and our students/children grow spiritually. Truth satisfies the intellect     The Catholic Church speaks the truth, no matter how few listen. She does not shy away from controversy. Countless Catholics have been martyrs for the truth. Unlike our relati

Reflecting the Human Longing for Beauty: Paraorchestra

Reflecting the Human Longing for Beauty: Paraorchestra The  British Paraorchestra , which features world-class musicians with disabilities, just released this  youtube recording .   Let's help it go viral. I can't stop playing this piece. Perhaps this is how the Mystery sees us: Keep reading here...

Our Lady of the Gates of Dawn, Mary the Mother of Mercy

Reposted from Costing Not Less Than Everything Mary the Mother of Mercy, Chapel of the  Gates of Dawn  in Vilnius, Lithuania The  rizas  (robes), or revetments, of gilded silver, are in three separate pieces. The gown of Our Lady is embellished with flowers, in a reference to Our Lady as a ‘hortus conclusus’ or walled garden.  Many miracles have taken place after veneration of the painting – and about 8,000 votive offerings have been presented to the chapel, including the silver crescent moon at the base of the painting. The painting is believed to be of Polish origin and, unusually, represents Our Lady without the Infant Christ. The statues on either side of the painting are of Saint Joachim and Saint Anne, the parents of the Blessed Virgin. The chapel is an important place of pilgrimage in Lithuania and was visited by Blessed John Paul II in 1993. In the third week of November every year – in 2012, from 11th to 18th of November, the Indulgenced Feast of the Merciful Mo

Contemplating Teens and Tchiakovsky

Contemplating Teens and Tchaikovsky Helping teens navigate adolescence is not for the faint of heart. I teach teens. My husband and I are raising one, and soon, two, teens. The adolescent years are as tumultuous, as full of questioning and confusion, as the toddler years. Sometimes, I find out things I would rather not know. Sometimes, I have to remind myself that the Mystery is imbedded in all reality and that all of us, even teens who make poor decisions, are redeemable miracles. Keep Reading...

A Grandson Shows How Suffering Can Evoke Beauty

Today our 12-year-old son tidied up garbage in Abuelita's garage, where their spaniel went snacking.  Today he stayed with Grandpapi so I could take Abuelita grocery shopping.   Read more here...

From a Fellow Carmelite: On Beauty

I belong to the Carmelite Province of the Most Pure Heart of Mary.  They have recently revamped their website.  It still has some kinks, but it is very attractive and informative.  This link is part of their prayer page.  It is an inspiring essay on beauty as a way of access to God.  Enjoy! On Beauty - Order of Carmelites | Order of Carmelite

In Which I Gain Perspective

The young man was showing his friend something on his cell phone. "What are you looking at?" I asked him. "It's my brother. A picture of my brother learning to walk," he told me, looking up with a big smile.   Read more here....

The Why of the Wow of the New York Encounter

As I rode the train home from the New York Encounter last night (yes, that is our son's upright bass in the foreground; I agreed to carry the behemoth home so G. he could enjoy dinner in New York with friends unencumbered) I thought about why it had been such a good experience. I was delighted the chamber music orchestra our son plays in had the chance to perform Friday night in the Hammerstein Ballroom.  I found the talk on the Hubble Telescope interesting. I thought it was incredibly cool that Polish film director Krzysztof  Zanussi spoke and then was walking around wearing those fashion-forward glasses. But in the end, what awes me most about the New York Encounter are not the performances or presentations. After all, I have had two decades of interesting experiences as a journalist. What moves me most and stays with me now are the people who attend the New York Encounter .  Read more here...

Waiting in Line at Best Buy: Arrested by Beauty

On my way home from work this afternoon, I stopped by a Best Buy electronics store off the highway to pick up a VGA adapter for my MacBook. It was supposed to be a mindless errand - park the car, go in, find what I need, wait in line, buy it and leave. Nothing to it. But an encounter in the check-out line moved me to consider how much even the most ordinary moments can be filled with grace. Read more here...

Reflections from a Family Wedding: Church is For Sinners

Our family just pulled into the driveway from a whirlwind weekend in upstate New York, where we helped to celebrate the wedding of one of my husband's cousins, a 28-year-old nurse, to a wonderful man. The wedding took place at Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church in Ballston Lake. The bride's side of the church was filled with siblings, first cousins and second cousins who had flown in from as far as Idaho and California, a sprawling clan of Irish Americans that I was delighted to introduce our sons to. (We loved spending an hour and a half at a diner before the wedding meeting blogger Fran Rossi Szpylczyn , who lives and works nearby.) On the drive home, my husband told me he was surprised to hear one of the newly married couple's friends refer to the bride as a nostalgic girl, as a girl who likes to do things the old-fashioned way, including marrying in the church. This led us to reflect on what draws people to the Church and what prompts them to leave.

Where Poverty and Beauty Flower

I spent the good part of an hour yesterday afternoon standing in a lobster shack. Outside it was pouring. As I waited for the skies to clear, I chatted with a woman whose given name is Storme. Each summer after lobster season ends, Storme and her partner transform this shack (on the right in the photo) on the New Brunswick coast into a shop, where they sell their photographs, pottery and paintings. Transform is a nice way to put it: the women have to scour the shack of the stench of lobster, haddock and mussels so summer tourists see only a cute gift shop. It is hard, smelly work. My husband and I like to vacation like this, nice and slow. We love to take in the local flavors, learning a little about another corner of the world. This summer, we are spending time in a town called St. Martins, population 386. Read more here...

"Marty" and the Search for Beauty

I came into the house Sunday afternoon after digging in the garden and my husband had the movie "Marty" on the TV. I'd never seen it before, but he's seen it dozens of times. I sat down and watched with him. This gem tells a simple story about regular people. A 34-year-old bachelor named Marty Pilletti is hounded by his friends, his family, even the customers in the butcher shop where he works in the Bronx about why he is still single. It won the 1955 Academy Award for Best Picture and the Palme d'Or at Cannes. It's not that Marty doesn't want to marry. But Marty, who lives with his widowed Italian mother, has had no luck even in dating.   Read more here.