Sunday, January 31, 2010

Family Prayer

Lord God, Creator and Sustainer of life, watch over our family gathered in Jesus' name. Guide and Guard us, keep us united in love for one another. Let your grace be our support in whatever emergencies may lie ahead.

Show us, Father, how to put the past behind us, give You our best today, and place our tomoorows in your hands. Bless our laughter and tears, ease our sorrows and fears. Teach us to appriciate every good gist from your paternal heart. Amen.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Church Traditions

Wearing a veil to Mass or Adoration is one of my favorite traditions. Veiling yourself in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament is a symbol of dignity and humility, and it makes me very sad that it is a tradition which is hardly practiced. The Tabernacle is usually veiled (or it should be) because it is a Sacred Vessel, and women should also be veiled because we too are sacred vessels.

Friday, January 29, 2010

The Cross

Little headaches, little heartaches

Little griefs of every day

Little trials and vexations.

How they throng upon our way.

Yet all life is formed of small things.

Little leaves make up the trees.

Many tiny drops of water

Blending, make the mighty seas.

Asking Him for grace sufficient

To sustain us through each loss

And to treasure each small suffering

As a splinter from His Cross.


Thursday, January 28, 2010

Wasp Spray

Another interesting email.

Please pass this on to your friends and loved ones, especially the women.

Even if you have a gun, here's a more humane way to wreck someone's evil plans for you....and you can carry it in your car with no problem!!

Thought this was some good advice.

Did you know this? I didn't. I never really thought of it before.

I guess I can get rid of the baseball bat.

Wasp Spray

A friend who is a receptionist in a church in a high risk area was concerned about someone coming into the office on Monday to rob them when they were counting the collection. She asked the local police department about using pepper spray and they recommended to her thatshe get a can of wasp spray instead.

The wasp spray, they told her, can shoot up to twenty feet away and is a lot more accurate, while with the pepper spray, they have to get too close to you and could overpower you. The wasp spray temporarily blinds an attacker until they get to the hospital for an antidote. She keeps a can on her desk in the office and it doesn't attract attention from people like a can of pepper spray would. She also keeps one nearby at home for home protection. Thought this was interesting and might be of use.

On the heels of a break in and beating that left an elderly woman in Toledo dead, self defense experts have a tip that could save your life.

Val Glinka teaches self-defense to students at Sylvania Southview High School. For decades, he's suggested putting a can of wasp and hornet spray near your door or bed.

Glinka says, "This is better than anything I can teach them."Glinka considers it inexpensive, easy to find, and more effective than mace or pepper spray. The cans typically shoot 20 to 30 feet; so if someone tries to break into your home, Glinka says "spray the culprit in the eyes". It's a tip he's given to students for decades.

It's also one he wants everyone to hear. If you're looking for protection, Glinka says look to the spray.

"That's going to give you a chance to call the police; maybe get out.

"Maybe even save a life.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Walmart Commercial

I saw this over at A Broken Fortress and it's just too funny not to pass on.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

New Layout

Well I've decided to go with 3 columns, but I'm not sure if I like it.

Please tell me what you think.

Does it seem too cluttered/crowded?


Ok, so it's no longer three columns and though I loved my original backround...I really like this one too.

I know, I know, such a big deal about what the blog looks like, what's the big deal??

Well, it is a big deal for me. I want all of my readers to love what they see when they stop by.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Plans for 2011

I love old mission style Churches as I'm sure many people do, and I've been thinking that I would love to take a road trip dedicated to visiting these old Churches. I don't see a trip like this being possible for 2010, but I'm hoping we can make it work in 2011.
I haven't looked into this yet, but I'm pretty sure we can find lots of Churches if we stayed along the coast. What a beautiful drive that is, even though I drove some of that last year, I would do it again in a heart beat.
Highway 1 is gorgeous, but, I would demand (yes, I said demand) that we drive up highway 1 and find another way to get home. Even if we rent a car to drive up and fly back down. Driving down the 1 means being on THE EDGE of the cliff and after nearly having a nervous break down the last time, I refuse to go through it again. As long as we're on the side of the road closes to the mountain, I'm good to go.
What places are you planning or just hoping to go to?

The picture was taken on last years road trip, it is the top of San Carlos Cathedral in Monterey, Ca. The reason I only took a picture of the top is because the rest of the Church was covered by scaffolding due to repairs.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Prayers for Sean

Tomorrow at 2:30 PM my nephew Sean Michael will be having surgery for an abdominal hernia. Sean is only 9 years old & I'm sure he is pretty scared about the operation since most adults I know get completely freaked out when having to go under.

He's a tough kid & I'm sure he will recover nicely & will be back to playing baseball, football, riding dirt bikes, and all the other activities he loves so much in no time.

While I know all of Sean Michael's family and friends are praying for him, I'd like to ask all of you to offer a prayer for him as well, not only for the outcome of the surgery but for a quick and easy recovery. Every prayer helps.

We love you Sean Michael!

Uncle Paul & I are praying for you.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Help for Haiti


more from Amish Peace

Gelassenheit is a foundational value in Amish society that has no direct English translation. The best way to understand its richness and its meaning, is through synonyms: yieldedness, humility, calmness, composure, meekness, aplomb, tranquility, imperturbability, serenity, poise, sedateness, letting go, the opposite of self-assertion, a gentle spirit, submitting to God's will.

Gelassenheit is caught, not taught. The very first thing Amish children learn is that there is always a higher authority to yield to--older siblings, parents and grandparents, the greater good of the community, and God.

Gelassenheit stresses humility over pride and esteems others above self. It means helping others, never doing it for brownie points, never trying to get something for yourself in return.

"Christ is the best example of Gelassenheit. He provided the ultimate example of it when He, the Creator, yielded his life for the created."
Painting above is by Susie Riehl, her story is also in the book.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Carrying the Cross

I have looked at this picture so many times in the past few years but I feel like I have just seen it for the first time. It is of course obvious that Jesus is carrying His cross, but it is where He is looking that just struck me.

In the middle of His suffering Christ looks up to heaven, up to His Father in prayer so that He may be able to carry out His will.

At least that's what I see.

I now see this painting as a great reminder to me, to all of us, since we all have our own crosses to carry, some big, some small. No matter what the size we mustn't forget to ask Our Heavenly Father for strength, patience, and guidance through those trying times.

Litany in Honor of the Holy Cross

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Thinking of Paris

I was thinking about Paris the other day and how our first day there (in 2008) we had the best baguette sandwiches of our entire trip, and we had at least one a day, or so it seemed. I've been in love with French Bread ever since.

After purchasing our baguettes we walked over to Eiffel Tower to sit & enjoy our lunch. It was awesome!

One of my favorite pictures from the trip was taken that afternoon from the very spot we ate our lunch. I'll show you the original and altered versions.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Camel Kneel Softly

I heard this song for the first time at Mass on Sunday and I really wanted to share it with you. I was immediately drawn to how beautful it is, so I hope you enjoy.

I tried finding a youtube video, but had no luck, so Paul found an audio link for me. Thank you Sweetie!!

Here you go:

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Sub Tuum Praesidum

We turn to you for protection,
Holy Mother of God.
Listen to our prayers
and help us in our needs.
Save us from every danger,
glorious and blessed Virgin.

This prayer, known in Latin as "Sub tuum Praesidium" and first found in a Greek papyrus, c. 300, is the oldest known prayer to the Virgin.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Ben Stein

This was sent to me in an email. It's worth reading.

The following was written by Ben Stein and recited by him on CBS Sunday Morning Commentary.

My confession:

I am a Jew, and every single one of my ancestors was Jewish. And it does not bother me even a little bit when people call those beautiful lit up, bejeweled trees, Christmas trees. I don't feel threatened. I don't feel discriminated against. That's what they are, Christmas trees.

It doesn't bother me a bit when people say, 'Merry Christmas' to me. I don't think they are slighting me or getting ready to put me in a ghetto. In fact, I kind of like it. It shows that we are all brothers and sisters celebrating this happy time of year. It doesn't bother me at all that there is a manger scene on display at a key intersection near my beach house in Malibu. If people want a creche, it's just as fine with me as is the Menorah a few hundred yards away.

I don't like getting pushed around for being a Jew, and I don't think Christians like getting pushed around for being Christians. I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed around, period. I have no idea where the concept came from, that America is an explicitly atheist country. I can't find it in the Constitution and I don't like it being shoved down my throat.

Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we should worship celebrities and we aren't allowed to worship God as we understand Him? I guess that's a sign that I'm getting old, too. But there are a lot of us who are wondering where these celebrities came from and where the America we knew went to.

In light of the many jokes we send to one another for a laugh, this is a little different: This is not intended to be a joke; it's not funny, it's intended to get you thinking.

Billy Graham's daughter was interviewed on the Early Show and Jane Clayson asked her 'How could God let something like this happen?' (regarding Hurricane Katrina).. Anne Graham gave an extremely profound and insightful response. She said, 'I believe God is deeply saddened by this, just as we are, but for years we've been telling God to get out of our schools, to get out of our government and to get out of our lives. And being the gentleman He is, I believe He has calmly backed out. How can we expect God to give us His blessing and His protection if we demand He leave us alone?'

In light of recent events.... Terrorists attack, school shootings, etc. I think it started when Madeleine Murray O'Hare (she was murdered, her body found a few years ago) complained she didn't want prayer in our schools, and we said OK. Then someone said you better not read the Bible in school.... The Bible says thou shalt not kill; thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbor as yourself. And we said OK.

Then Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn't spank our children when they misbehave, because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem (Dr. Spock's son committed suicide). We said an expert should know what he's talking about. And we said okay.

Now we're asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don't know right from wrong, and why it doesn't bother them to kill strangers, their classmates, and themselves.

Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out. I think it has a great deal to do with 'WE REAP WHAT WE SOW.'

Funny how simple it is for people to trash God and then wonder why the world's going to hell. Funny how we believe what the newspapers say, but question what the Bible says. Funny how you can send 'jokes' through e-mail and they spread like wildfire, but when you start sending messages regarding the Lord, people think twice about sharing. Funny how lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene articles pass freely through cyberspace, but public discussion of God is suppressed in the school and workplace..

Are you laughing yet?

Funny how when you forward this message, you will not send it to many on your address list because you're not sure what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it.

Funny how we can be more worried about what other people think of us than what God thinks of us.

Pass it on if you think it has merit.

amen, amen, amen!
I Only hope we find GOD again before it is too late ! !

My Best Regards, Honestly and respectfully,

Ben Stein

Monday, January 11, 2010

Reflections On Simplicity (from Amish Peace)

Some questions to ask yourself, aswell as some advice. All from one of the books I'm reading.

What's your perspective on the things you value? Do they mean more than they should?

How do you define a successful life? Have you ever asked yourself, "What does that definition of success cost me?"

God's Spirit often guides us by giving us a lack of peace about a certain decision.

What does your clothing express about you?

How much time is spent on your clothing needs? How much of it is on your clothing wants? What's the difference?

Friday, January 8, 2010

Sweet & Mild

I will praise Thee, O Lord my God, with my whole heart, and I will glorify Thy Name for ever: for Thou, O Lord, are sweet and mild: and plenteous in mercy to all that call upon Thee.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on the on-going reaction to Fox News analyst Brit Hume’s plea to Tiger Woods that he turn to Christianity and seek forgiveness:

Anyone who doesn’t understand the premium that Christianity puts on forgiveness is badly educated, but that is no excuse for the kind of vitriol that has been spewed against Brit Hume. For advising Tiger Woods to consider Christianity, Hume has been roundly condemned by those whose highest virtue is being non-judgmental. He has been compared to Islamic extremists by Keith Olbermann of MSNBC; he has been the subject of endless blogs ridiculing him and his religion; and is now being counseled by Tom Shales of the Washington Post to apologize.

None of Hume’s critics, of course, seem to have any problem with the increasingly aggressive campaigns launched by atheists seeking to proselytize Christians. During this past Christmas season, we were treated to a slew of atheist evangelizing efforts, ranging from billboards in towns across America to posters on urban buses, all designed to promote atheism and denigrate Christianity. In England, author Philip Pullman is pushing for an atheist curriculum in the elementary schools, and his fellow countryman and cohort, Richard Dawkins, wants summer camps aimed at weaning kids away from Christianity. These examples, of course, are seen by Hume’s critics as nothing more than exercises in free speech. But when he speaks, as an analyst, not as a reporter, he’s put on the liberal watch-list as a closet Taliban.

When George W. Bush was reelected in 2004, all we heard from this gang was about the coming theocracy that threatened to engulf America. Even they didn’t think that the worst that would happen was a soundbite from Brit Hume touting the teachings of Christianity.



Monday, January 4, 2010

Laudamus te. Benedicimus te. Adoramus te.

My latest plan is to teach myself Latin, yet I'm not exactly sure how to do it. This is something I've been wanting to do for some time (along with a million other things), but as far as I've gotten is to learn the Our Father, the Hail Mary, and the Glory Be, along with a couple of other prayers.

My goal is to be able to hear an entire reading at Mass & know what is said without referring too much to the English translation.

If anyone has any helpful hints or suggestions for me please send them my way. I can use all the help I can get. :)


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Friday, January 1, 2010

Nancy Pelosi, Catholic Without a Clue

by Elizabeth Lev

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi seems to be planning a second career as a theologian. Unfortunately, she never gets one Catholic fact right. Interviewed by Eleanor Clift for Newsweek's year-end issue, Pelosi capped an 18-month succession of clamorously incorrect public statements about what Catholics believe with her own take on the meaning of freedom.

Asked about her "brushes" with church hierarchy, Pelosi responded, "I have some concerns about the church's position respecting a woman's right to choose. I have some concerns about the church's position on gay rights. I am a practicing Catholic, although they're probably not too happy about that. But it is my faith. I practically mourn this difference of opinion because I feel what I was raised to believe is consistent with what I profess, and that is that we are all endowed with a free will and a responsibility to answer for our actions. And that women should have that opportunity to exercise their free will."

Pelosi's Catholic-lite construct here suggests that free will means the ability to judge what is right and wrong, with each person's conscience being the final arbiter. Coherency in her concept of Catholic teaching would mean legalizing rape and murder and allowing each person to choose and then take responsibility for his or her own actions. More than the far left liberal that many claim her to be, Pelosi seems to favor anarchy.
Had Pelosi chosen to do a minimum of research before speaking, she might have consulted the users' manual for the Catholic Church, the Catechism, which some American bishop or other must have sent her as a stocking-stuffer this year. There our aspiring theologian would have found a different definition. Freedom, according to the Catholic Church, (CCC article 3) is the person's ability to choose between good and evil. He can choose to do something good or something evil but he cannot choose to make evil good. To take responsibility for one's actions is to recognize that one has chosen evil and to accept the consequences both in this world and the next.
The position of the Catholic Church is that abortion, the taking of an innocent human life, is intrinsically evil.
Pelosi has long been in need of remedial CCD -- religious education -- classes. During the 2008 presidential campaign, she handed the bishops' conference the proverbial softball over the plate when she responded in a Meet the Press interview to the question of whether life begins at conception with, "I would say that as an ardent, practicing Catholic, this is an issue that I have studied for a long time. And what I know is, over the centuries, the doctors of the church have not been able to make that definition."
Even the most somnolent bishops leapt out of their episcopal thrones at that one, happy to cite Embryology 101 textbooks stating the basic scientific fact that human life begins at conception. The real question, they retorted, is whether one places any value on that life. Pelosi's riposte was to ignore the life question altogether, declaring that one way or the other, "it shouldn't have an impact on the woman's right to choose." Is Pelosi's church the church of choice, or Christ?
On February 18, Pelosi came to Rome, where she demanded to meet Pope Benedict XVI, hoping for a few photos to show her running with the theological big dogs and shine up her Catholic credentials. When no photo-ops were granted, Pelosi did a little history rewrite, issuing a press release recounting her friendly banter with Benny over global warming and fighting poverty. After all, who would know what they really talked about? But she underestimated the then-81-year-old pontiff, who beat her to the punch by sending a statement of his own.
"His Holiness took the opportunity to speak of the requirements of the natural moral law and the Church's consistent teaching on the dignity of human life from conception to natural death which enjoin all Catholics, and especially legislators, jurists and those responsible for the common good of society, to work in cooperation with all men and women of good will in creating a just system of laws capable of protecting human life at all stages of its development." That was the Vatican announcement shortly after the meeting.
With an F in theology and an incomplete in history, Pelosi's Catholic GPA seems to be at an all-time low. The Catholic Church does recognize the principle of "invincible ignorance" for those who are doctrinally challenged in understanding how the church works and what faith demands of the believer. To enjoy the benefit of that compassionate principle, however, Pelosi would have to suffer from severe doctrinal deprivation (as distinct from mere opportunism or a malicious desire to harm the church to which she claims to "ardently" belong).
You're no Catherine of Siena, Nancy. Stick to your day job, where, truth be told, your grade point average is also falling.
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