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Introducing “As Morning Breaks: Daily Gospel Reflections”

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I am part of a brand new published book with 30 other writers who are regular contributors to Daily Gospel Reflections on CatholicMom.  Introducing As Morning Breaks: Daily Gospel Reflections .  I write the reflection for the fourth day of every month. If you do download this book, we would be thrilled if you left a short review. With Christ joy is constantly born anew.” Pope Francis Inspired by our prayer community at CatholicMom.com, As Morning Breaks offers 365 daily reflections on the Liturgy of the Word and the Gospels. With each daily meditation, the reader is invited into a further examination of the Gospel passage. A “ponder” question is provided for contemplation, discussion or journaling. Each meditation ends with a brief prayer. These prayers are offered as a springboard for your own quiet meditative prayer. read more

Be careful little mouths what you say {thoughts on depression}

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"We should not despair of the eternal salvation of persons who have taken their own lives. By ways known to him alone, God can provide the opportunity for salutary repentance. The Church prays for persons who have taken their own lives." 



This morning the world is reeling with opinions on depression and suicide. Words are flying onto the page and scrolling in front of us. Words of kindness, compassion, confusion, and even hate fill our mind.
Dear Church, please remember during this time what we believe. It doesn't matter what our emotions are. It doesn't matter what our own experience with depression is or is not. It matters what we believe.
We believe in a kind and compassionate God full of mercy and justice. That God knows that depression is a terrible and ugly thing that whispers lies and hopelessness. Our God knows that when that much despair finds its way into our life, we are very ill, in pain, and under much stress. {Read more here...}

Sunshine Sunday

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In between the noisy antics of my 3 year old boy who does NOT like to stay still in Church, I was fortunate enough to hear most of the readings today, and one part really struck me in the Gospel reading.
When Jesus saw that Lazarus had already passed away and saw how deeply it hurt some of his closest friends, he wasperturbed.The definition of perturbed is"anxious or unsettled, upset." Jesus wasanxious and unsettled? I don't know why but it made me feel better that even the Son of God felt this way from time to time.  I mean after all, he wastrue God, but ALSOtrue man, right?
I often feel unsettled.  (That tends to happen when you live with your in-laws for a looooong time!)  But unlike Jesus, I often let that feeling fester.  Jesus didn't.
So I guess it's comes down to what I do with that feeling, whether I use it to grow closer to God and build up my relationship with others, or whether I use my moods to tear others around me down, and inevitably tear myself down …

Twelve Tips for Sharing Advent with Your Kids

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Since it's too soon for the Twelve Days of Christmas, here are twelve tips for celebrating Advent instead. These tips include what you should do, what you shouldn't do, and what you can get away with (I'll promise never to tell).

**What to Do this Advent**1. Explore other cultural traditions: Learn how the custom of Christmas stockings evolved from the German tradition of slipping treats into shoes or slippers that kids leave near the chimney in the days leading up to St. Nicholas' Day (December 6). Celebrate the Feast Day of the Patroness of the Americas, Our Lady of Guadalupe, on December 12 at the nearest parish with a large Hispanic community. On Christmas Eve, you can serve twelve fish dishes the way the Italians do. Experiment by adding shrimp cocktail or baked clams to the menu. Dilled salmon steaks garnished with lemon always taste great. Sushi platters or bouillabaisse combine many types of fish in one dish. See how many you can add to your Christmas Eve menu!

My Annual Mani-Pedi and a Trip through Outer Space

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[part of the SmallSuccess link-up on CatholicMom.com]

The pedicurist recoiled in horror when she beheld the extent of my callouses. "Callous cream," she sternly recommended, and then proceeded to chatter excitedly in Korean to the pedicurist next to her, presumably describing my icky feet in gory detail. After rubbing the magic callous removal cream into my feet and scraping, scraping, scraping, the pedicurist triumphantly raised the scraper with the incontrovertible evidence of my appallingly negligent foot care. She must have thought I had been herding yak barefoot over the Russian steppes all last summer.

But, with six kids, I don't have time for weekly or even monthly visits to the nail salon. And I made a bargain with myself not to get that annual mani-pedi until my husband and I revised the proposal on our marriage advice book and sent it off to the publisher. As soon as I pressed the send button on the proposal, I hustled down to the local NAILS NAILS NAILS! for th…