Sunday, January 27, 2013

St. Terese of Lisieux

"If you are willing to bear serenely the trial of being displeasing to yourself, then you will be for Jesus a pleasant place of shelter."

Suicides in Military

I am so troubled when I read about people committing suicide. A recent article caught my attention, "Military suicides increasing. More soldiers committed suicide in 2012 than were killed in battle for entire year". How infinitely sad; how tragic; why did these people think that destroying themselves was their only option? Did anyone in their lives notice that they needed help? What does this say about our culture - the society we live in that a human being can walk among us so filled with despair and anxiety that no one notices? Perhaps they do notice but choose not to intervene or "interfere" with the one who is lost? It makes me want to cry, to sob out loud, to rend my clothing, and pour ashes on my head when I hear of these poor lost ones who choose to end it all.
Maybe we let them go because we have lost the capacity to care; we have lots of excuses to turn our eyes away from the despairing one -- "I'm too busy", "Let someone else deal with it", I have too much going on right now"....
This morning before the dawn arrived, I lay in bed thinking of these poor lost souls and wondering what God would want me to do, and then something that Mother Teresa of Calcutta said came to my mind, "Serve Jesus in the distressing disguise of the poor". If only there were someone in each of their lives who told them how precious they are in God's eyes and that giving in to despair was something that they should not do and that God will give them the strength and the graces they need to carry on each day...perhaps then they would have been willing to pick up their cross and carry it.
"Just allow people to see Jesus in you
to see how you pray
to see how you lead a pure life
to see how you deal with your family
to see how much peace there is in your family
Then you can look straight into their eyes and say
"This is the way". You speak from life, you speak from experience."
Mother Teresa

Thursday, January 10, 2013

New Clairvaux Monks in Vineyard

We visited this monastery, the Abbey of New Clairvaux, in Vina, California - just north of Chico.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

When did Christ first shed His blood for us?

I read this very interesting article by Father Steve Grunow regarding the circumcision of Christ, part of which is below. I never thought about this very important event in Christ's life and so found this teaching fascinating. Imagine a jeweled reliquary holding the foreskin of Christ! Unfortunately, it was stolen by a priest in 1983 -- why would he steal it and what did he do with it? Anyway, read the following for more enlightenment:
"Pius Parsch notes that the Circumcision of the Lord is remembered by the Church as the first sacrifice of blood that flows in redemption. There is scandal in this statement as well. We live in a culture that feigns that it can have love without sacrifice, and narrows its vision of love to accommodate this prejudice. It is in the cramped confines of this narrow vision that the risk of true love is diminished, as well as its power to redeem. The Incarnation is essentially an act of love, and though we try to convince ourselves otherwise, there is no real love in this world without a sacrifice of some sort. The Circumcision of Christ is the foreshadowing of the greater sacrifice that will inevitably come. The greater the love, the greater the potential for suffering — and the love of God in Christ is the greatest love of all."

Father Steve Grunow is the Assistant Director of Word on Fire Catholic Ministries.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Oh, Holy Mary, dwelling place of God


O holy dwelling place of God.

O holy temple of the Word.

O Holy Mary, holy mother of God.

Verse 1

O radiant star of heaven , illuminating the night;

Reflection of the Son, our source of life and light.


Verse 2

O blest beyond all others, of ev’ry land and race,

Possessing in your soul the fullness of God’s grace.


Verse 3

From heav’n the angel Gabriel annouced the ancient plan

And humbly you accepted to bear the God made man.


Verse 4

With joy beyond all measure you cared for God’s own Son

And pondered in your heart the new age now begun.


Verse 5

Exquisite was your sorrow, unequaled was the loss

You suffered when your son was raised upon the cross.


Verse 6

All praise and adoration we sing now to your Son

Who reigns in highest heaven and has the vic’try won.