St. Michael Prayer

St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do, thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the Power of God, cast into hell satan and all of the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Glory to God in the Highest!

Monday, November 30, 2015

Her "Yes" changed the World

Yesterday was the First Sunday of Advent and the start of the new church year.
In real time, Mary was nearing the end of her pregnancy with Jesus.
I don't know if she was one of these woman who barely showed her baby bump or grew quite large with the baby inside of her.
That doesn't matter, but what matters is that when
Mary said
"Yes," to the Angel Gabriel,
she said
on faith.
She had one question for Gabriel.
Remember, she didn't doubt that this act of God could be accomplished, but she was a consecrated virgin and had served in the temple since early childhood.
She had not been engaged or wed.  Her experience with men was very
Her question was:
 “How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?
Luke 1: 34 
She knew where babies came from.  She knew she was a virgin.
She didn't doubt.  She only wondered how.
Through the angel Gabriel, God spoke to Mary.  He wanted her to know how great was the life was that she would be carrying in the temple of her body.
She still could say "No." to the request from God
"And the angel said to her in reply, “The holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God."
 Luke 1:35
The angel then reminded Mary that nothing is impossible with God as he told her of the baby Elizabeth was carrying.  
I imagine Mary smiling as she agreed to be the Mother of God, the mother of the Promised one, the Messiah.
All this time, she had the option to say no, but she didn't.
She said, in total submission to the Will of God,
“Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word."
Luke 1:38
And the child was conceived in her womb.
The Child, in our day referred to as a "clump of cells," began His life, at that moment,  in the body of a woman chosen for Him by the Father.
His life began with Mary's "Yes."
For unto us a Savior will be born!
Prepare the way of the Lord!


Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Worth Repeating: Givei Thanks

"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."
Thessalonians 5: 16-18

Thanksgiving is not the only time of the year in which we need to remember to give thanks and be joyful.  Paul reminds us that we must rejoice always.

Really?  Rejoice always?  What about when things go wrong?  Yes, even when things go wrong.
 Pain is easier to bear when we focus on Jesus.  By focusing on our God, we are able to take the burden off of ourselves.  The pain is easier to bear when we know that Jesus, our Brother, is with us through each trial and storm.  Rejoice?  Yes, rejoice for God is at our side!  His Arms are outstretched ready to bear our pain and help us carry our cross.  Rejoice!  The Lord is with us!

Pray without ceasing!  Surely Paul is joking!  How can we pray without ceasing?  Why should we pray without ceasing?

The easiest way to pray without ceasing is to begin each day with the morning offering.

O  My Jesus,
through the Immaculate Heart of Mary,
I offer You all of my prayers, works,
joys and sufferings
of this day for all the intentions
of Your Sacred Heart,
in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass said
throughout the world,
in reparation for my sins,
for the intentions of all my relatives and friends,
and in particular
for the intentions of the Holy Father.

By giving your day to Jesus, you are in a constant state of prayer.  Since prayer is the direct communication with God, we grow closer to Him.  By giving Jesus our day, we become aware of the virtues we need to develop and practice.  With this knowledge, we can choose to grow closer to God by growing in holiness.  To grow in holiness, we eliminate sin and the causes of sin in our lives.  We choose the ways of God over the ways of the world.  Yes, pray always.

Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

When the sea is calm and the waves are gentle, giving thanks to God is easy.  We can praise and glorify Him with our entire being.  Our heart and soul joins easily to the heart of our Savior. Then, the storm surrounds us, and Paul reminds us that we must continue to give thanks to God in all circumstances.  When the waves throw us to the shore and threaten to swallow our boat, how can we give thanks?

We can learn to give thanks by saying,

Thank you, Lord, for being with me in this storm.  What happens at the end of this storm, I don't know, but I do know that You will be with me through it all.

Easier said than done?  Of course it is!  In the heart of the storm, the ability to thank God is a unique challenge.  However, Jesus has promised us that He will give us the graces we need each day.  

"My grace is sufficient for you." 2 Corinthians 12:9

Thanksgiving begins with the decision to thank God in spite of what is happening in our lives.  When you are tempted to run and hide or slide into a slippery web of self pity or doubt, you can choose to make the decision to thank God knowing that He is with you, and that He is allowing this storm to bring you closer to Him.  We all have the amazing gift of free will, and it is through this gift that we can choose to honor and glorify the great I AM with our gift of thanksgiving.

For what am I grateful?

1) The hot weather is easing up!  Fall is on the way!
2)  I made it through the day without gossiping today!
3) I had a delicious dinner yesterday!  

Yes, I am grateful!  Thank You, My Lord and My God!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Preparing to Prepare the Way of the Lord

(Insert the sound of a record player scratching the record.)
No, we don't have to prepare to prepare,
but I have found that with most things, 
if there is spiritual preparation,
things tend to go better than expected.

The Holy Season of 
Advent begins this coming Sunday,
November 29.
During the season of Advent we begin preparations for 
unlike secular preparations, we prepare spiritually to receive the Newborn Babe 
into our hearts on
Christmas Day.

We change our way of looking at Christmas.
Instead of only being a day of presents, activities, families, friends, foods, parties,
we look at Christmas as day in which we can celebrate
the birth of our Divine Lord and Savior,
Jesus, the Christ.

Now, I know you're holding your breath already at the thought of something else to do.
Breathe and let go of the tension.
What good will it do you?
Will you enjoy Christmas on any level if you are stressed beyond words?
I don't think so.
If you slow down, breathe, and choose your activities wisely,
you will enjoy the celebration of Christmas on many more levels than you can imagine.

What can we do to prepare to prepare?

1) Stop.
That's right, stop.
For five minutes think about the story of the Birth of Jesus.
If you don't remember, pick up your Bible and read
Luke 2: 1-20
This tells the story of the birth of Jesus.
How great is that?  Angels, Shepherds, Wisemen.

2) Say a minimum of 1 Our Father, Hail Mary, and Glory be to God each day.
Ideally, if your could say a Rosary each day, that would be best, but praying, even if it's less than a Rosary, is good.

3) Write down three things each day that are spiritual about the celebration of Christmas.
These don't have to be long, just three thoughts about Christmas.

4) Praise God for three things in your life.

5) Thank God for three things in your life.

6) Make sure you attend Mass this weekend.

7) Congratulate yourself.  You are preparing to prepare the Way of the Lord!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Are You Ready to Prepare for the Coming fo Jesus?

A week from today Advent begins.
Take a deep breath.
Advent is a season of preparation for His coming.
Did you forget about that?
That's what Advent is really about.
It's a time to prepare for the coming of Jesus.

I'm sure you're like me when you realized how close we are to Christmas.
When am I going to have the time to "Prepare" for the coming of Jesus 
when I have to think about the presents, the celebrations, who's coming over for dinner, will everyone get along this year?
Yes, I know.
This is a part of Xmas, but the true preparation for
Christmas means that we are spiritually preparing for the coming of the Christ Child.
We have to do that, too?
More importantly than worrying about Xmas dinner, gifts, and parties,
it is essential that we take the time to prepare spiritually for 
I can hear the scream now,
"I don't have time!"
Believe it or not, you do.
I'm not saying that this will be easy, but preparing, with your family, brings you closer to God and reminds us that we have a God who loves us so much,
"...He gave His only Begotten Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life."
John 3:16 
Breathe and think for a moment about that.
God. Gave. Us. His. Only. Begotten. Son. 
so that we might have,
Eternal life.

When we die, we aren't going to take with us
the presents we received,
the lists we wrote,
the food we prepared.
We are only going to take with us the love we showed others and the merits of our actions on earth.
 No one lives forever.
Take the time now, while you are graced with life, to prepare for the Heavenly Kingdom.
We'll discuss ways to prepare for the Coming of the Christ Child.
In that, alone, there is hope.
Prepare the way of the Lord.  

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Moments with God

I found the ginkgo tree, actually, not one tree, but two trees.  I found the first tree at the end of the block.  I knew it had to be near because I found the first leaves in that area when I was most despondent.  The leaves are great consolations to me.  The trees are a sign of prosperity and hope in Japan.  After the nuclear attack on Hiroshima, to end World War II, at point zero, where the bomb exploded, a ginkgo tree survived the impact and remained standing, intact, with its leaves on the tree.  I found the second tree, literally, in front of my nose.  I knew it had to be near, but I never thought it would be directly across the street.  I know God smiled with me when I saw it.  He lead me here.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Ending the Week in Praise and Thanksgiving

"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."
1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18
The end of National Bible Week is near, but here are 3 verses dedicated to praise and thanksgiving.
1) "Give thanks to the Lord, who is good,
    whose love endures forever;"
1 Chronicles 16:34
2) "And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him."
Colossians 3:17
3)  "In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus."
1 Thessalonians 5:18
Praise God from Whom all Blessings flow.
Praise Him all creatures here below.
Praise Him above the Heavenly Host.
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost!!!!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

National Bible Week: My Top Ten Favorite Bible Verses

"Jesus Wept."
John 11:35

 "For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life."
John 3:16

"See, upon the palms of my hands I have engraved you;
    your walls are ever before me."
Isaiah 49:16

"Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
    before you were born I dedicated you,
    a prophet to the nations I appointed you."
Jeremiah 1:5 

"We always give thanks to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you"
Colossians 1:3

"Then the Lord said: Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord; the Lord will pass by. There was a strong and violent wind rending the mountains and crushing rocks before the Lord—but the Lord was not in the wind; after the wind, an earthquake—but the Lord was not in the earthquake;  after the earthquake, fire—but the Lord was not in the fire; after the fire, a light silent sound. When he heard this, Elijah hid his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. A voice said to him, Why are you here, Elijah?"
1 Kings 19: 11-13 

 "Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, is not pompous, it is not inflated,  it is not rude, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things."
1 Corinthians 13: 4-7

"There is an appointed time for everything,
    and a time for every affair under the heavens. 
 A time to give birth, and a time to die;
    a time to plant, and a time to uproot the plant. 
 A time to kill, and a time to heal;
    a time to tear down, and a time to build. 
 A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
    a time to mourn, and a time to dance. 
 A time to scatter stones, and a time to gather them;
    a time to embrace, and a time to be far from embraces. 
 A time to seek, and a time to lose;
    a time to keep, and a time to cast away. 
 A time to rend, and a time to sew;
    a time to be silent, and a time to speak. 
 A time to love, and a time to hate;
    a time of war, and a time of peace. 
Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat [or drink], or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?  Look at the birds in the sky; they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are not you more important than they?  Can any of you by worrying add a single moment to your life-span?  Why are you anxious about clothes? Learn from the way the wild flowers grow. They do not work or spin. But I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was clothed like one of them. If God so clothes the grass of the field, which grows today and is thrown into the oven tomorrow, will he not much more provide for you, O you of little faith?  So do not worry and say, ‘What are we to eat?’ or ‘What are we to drink?’ or ‘What are we to wear?’  All these things the pagans seek. Your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.  But seek first the kingdom [of God] and his righteousness, and all these things will be given you besides. Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself. Sufficient for a day is its own evil. "
Matthew 6: 25-34

 "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid."
John 14:27 


Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Worth Repeating: Say This and He will....

"Lord, I am Yours.  Lead me where You want.  I come to do Your will.  Let me be Your eyes.  Let me be Your mouth.  Let me Your Hands.  Let me be Your Feet.  I am here.  I come to do Your Will."
When the Divine touches you.
You will never be the same.
You will go to places you never dreamed you'd go.
You'll do things you never dreamed you could do.
You'll sail seas you never dreamed you'd sail.
You will walk in His Footsteps.
He will heal you.
 He will take You.
He will lead You.
He has chosen You.
He has carved you on the palms of His Sacred Hands.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Celebrating National Bible Week! 10 Interesting Facts about the Bible

1.The Bible was written over a period of 1,600 years by about 40 men and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.

2.The Bible is available in 2,454 different languages.
3.In North Korea, if you own a Bible, the punishment is death.
 4.The first Bible was printed in 1454 AD by Johannes Gutenberg.
5.The longest book of the Bible is the book of Psalms.
6.The shortest book of the Bible is 2 John.
7.The Bible is the best selling book in the world.
8.The word "bible" does not appear in the Bible.
10.The original languages of the Bible were Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic.
11.The Bible contains 73 books.  There are 46 books in the Old Testament and 27 books in the New Testament.

Ready to read your Bible now?

Monday, November 16, 2015

Yesterday was the Start of National Bible Week - Questions

National Bible Week
November 15 - 21.

Do you know where your Bible is?

If you do, is it displayed in a prominent place in your home?

How often do you read the Bible?

When was the last time you read the Bible?

Do you read the Bible with your children?

Do you read the Bible as a family?

What is one of your favorite Biblical passages?

Do you read the Bible daily?

Did you know that the readings at Mass are taken from the Bible?

Do you meditate upon the readings?

Tomorrow, we'll explore the reasons to do all of these things.


Sunday, November 15, 2015

Angel of God...

Angel of God,
My Guardian Dear,
To Whom God loves,
Entrusts you here.
Ever this day/night,
be at my side,
to light,
to guard,
to rule, 
to guide.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

In the Morning, the Sun Still Rose...

After the horrendous events of Good Friday,
the sun still rose the next morning.
As the Apostles waited in fear in the 
Upper Room,
the sun rose the next morning.
When the women left to anoint the body of 
even though they were fearful,
the sun rose.
The stone was gone.
The body of Jesus was no longer in His tomb.
There was Hope again.

we need to pray for peace.
We need to pray for 
We need to pray for Japan.

We need to return to God.

Oh, my Jesus, forgive us our sins.
Save us from the fires of hell.
Lead all souls to heaven, especially those who are in most need of Your Mercy.


A Moment with God

The setting sun turned the sky above it red, orange, blue, purple, and yellow.  The colors pierced her heart like swords full of painful memories.  She didn’t mind being alone.  She liked that.  She hurt from the rejection, again.  Some things never change.

 She remembered the total acceptance of another place.  She was unique in a field of flowers that were the same here.  There she was treasured for being unique.  For being a daughter of God who was different.  Here, different was wrong instead of just being different.

  The same person.  Different place. She smiled and thanked God for those memories.  He was with her, no matter where she was.  She was cherished by Him.  He smiled at her. 
Life would never be dull!  She laughed and ate her popcorn. 

Friday, November 13, 2015

Ending the Week in Thanksgiving and Praise...

"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."
1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18
1) When it rains, instead of snows in Minnesota, in November,  there is great reason for praise and thanksgiving!  
Note that the grass is still green.
So far, it's been a great fall!

2) Walking with Pixie is such a peaceful time for me.  I wonder if that's why Jesus chose to be born in a time when walking was the main mode of transportation.
He had to walk everywhere.
I often feel as if He is walking with us.

 3) I am so looking forward to Thanksgiving.  The kids we'll be home, and we'll be together again.
Life is so good!

Praise God from Whom all Blessings flow.
Praise Him all creatures here below.
Praise Him above the Heavenly Host.
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost!!!!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

A Prayer for Our Children

From Conception to until their deaths, our children need our prayers.
Here's a prayer I wrote for them.

I ask You this, knowing that no prayer goes unanswered, but each prayer is heard by You with love, to be acted upon in Your time and Your way.  Bless  my children with Your  Fatherly  blessing and Your Sacred Grace.  These children with whom You blessed me need You. I ask that, in times of sorrow and stress, they seek to do Your Will with joy.  I ask You to give them undeniable clarity of your Will for them.  I ask You to give them strength and courage to follow You.  I ask You to enfold them in Your wings as a mother hen protects her chicks.   I ask You to make them saints, great saints.  I ask You to open their hearts and souls to Your whisperings so that they might come to realize Your great love for them.  

When the time is right, if it is Your Will for them, I ask you to send them holy,loving spouses so that by fulfilling their vocation of marriage, both will continue to grow in holiness, helping each other with love and grace.

(Add this part if your children are adults.)
Lastly, I ask You to give me the wisdom to know when to speak and when not to speak,  trusting in Your tender love for them.  I ask You for the wisdom to advise and guide, if I am asked.    I ask You for the grace to share Your love with them.

I praise and thank You!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Worth Repeating: The Prayer of Silence

“Be still, and know that I am God!
    I am exalted among the nations,
    I am exalted in the earth.”

Psalm 46:10

Encounter the silence,
The silence becomes a prayer.
Focus on God,
and God alone.
In the silence, 
fill your heart 
with God who lives.
Find Him in the quiet of the day
and the dark, sacred night.
Let Him fill your soul
with His wondrous Love.
He speaks in the silence.
He speaks to your heart.

His love is a prayer,
a gift to you.
Encounter the silence.

He said, “Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Now there was a great wind, so strong that it was splitting mountains and breaking rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake;  and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a sound of sheer silence. When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. Then there came a voice to him that said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” 
1 Kings 19: 11-13

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

1,000 Souls a Day

You could make a dent in the population of 
by saying this prayer daily.
It's said to release 
souls each time it is prayed.

Eternal Father,
I offer You the Most Precious Blood of your divine Son, Jesus.
In union with all of the Masses said throughout the world today,
in reparation for sins,
for the Holy Souls in Purgatory,
for sinners everywhere,
for sinners in the Universal Church,
those within my own home
within my family.

The souls will thank you!

Monday, November 9, 2015

The Notebook in my Purse

For years, now, I have carried a small notebook in my purse.
In that notebook, and the picture you see is one of my many notebooks,
I have recorded ideas to remember, 
prayers, notes on homilies, notes from books I've read, and many thoughts.
and I don't know why it's taken so long,
I decided to transcribe these notebooks and add them to my notes on my computer.
What a treasure trove this has become for me.
I found stories have started, but not finished.
Stories I have forgotten and not finished.
I have found notes from homilies,
questions I've had about the faith, scriptural verses that touched my soul.
I am amazed by the information in these little notebooks!

Rarely did I date these entries.
Rarely did I note who the speaker was when I took notes, 
so these are lessons learned.
I started a new notebook today.
I did date the entry and noted the priest at Mass.
These will help me give credit where credit is due, if I use these notes in writing.
My little notebook is much more than a journal.
It's a book which will guide me on my spiritual journey.

I'm grateful for the information!
I'm grateful for the inspiration from the Holy Spirit!

Do you keep notes of what you hear at Mass?
Do you keep notes about ideas?
I'd love to hear your system of tracking them or what you think of the idea.
If you have questions, feel free to ask.
Thanks for visiting.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

A Moment and a Blessing From God

A friend of mine and I were enjoying brunch today at a local restaurant.  We enjoy each other's company and spend most of our time talking Catholic, anything Catholic.  As we were busy chatting, and our time together began at 10:30 AM and ended at 1 PM, our waitress came up and said that our check had been paid, and she nodded to the rough looking gentleman behind us, wearing a leather Harley jacket, accompanied by his, obviously, adored little girl.  They got ready to leave and my friend asked him if he had paid our bill.  He smiled and said. "Yes," and he walked out the door.  We tried to thank him, but he walked very quickly.  God blessed us in that moment with the gentleman's kindness. 

Friday, November 6, 2015

Ending the Week in Thanksgiving and Praise

"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."
1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18
1) God  blessed us with some beautiful weather this week.
The 70's are rare in Minnesota in November.
Praise You, Father!

2) I'm eating some homemade saurkraut as I write this.
It turned out to be very, very good.
Thank You, Holy Spirit for the inspiration to make this good food!

3) I'm finally starting to feel better.  I got my super dooper flu shot yesterday, and I woke up sick today.
Thank You, Jesus, Divine Physician for healing me!
Praise God from Whom all Blessings flow.
Praise Him all creatures here below.
Praise Him above the Heavenly Host.
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost!!!!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Who? God? Sense of Humor?

About 5 years ago, when life had become very difficult, at best,
God began to send me His Loving consolations.
One day,
Pixie and I were out walking, 
almost home,
out of nowhere,
a ginkgo leaf floated down to the pavement in front of me.
There was no wind or breeze.
The leaf just floated in my path.
I knew what that leaf meant:

At the time, I had little hope, and I was very depressed.
In Japan, the ginkgo leaf is a sign of Hope.
I realized that this was a consolation that God had sent me to say,
"Be strong.  Have hope."
I took a picture of the leaf, and I framed the leaf.  
Now, there were 3 other framed leaves in my "gingko" collection of Hope.

 So, every year when I am in that area, I wait for my ginkgo leaf, my consolation, my hope from God.
This year, it didn't happen.
I said a prayer one day,
"Lord, where is my consolation?  I have not even seen a ginkgo leaf this fall."
The next day,
I found 2 leaves. 
I was happy.  I framed the leaves with a beautiful, red maple leaf.

Fast forward to last Tuesday.
The news had been very good.
I can't say more than this because it would violate someone's privacy.
Trust me, the news was good.

As we walked towards the parking lot, I looked down, and I saw the leaves.
Not just one.
Not just two, 
but almost all the leaves that had fallen off a ginkgo tree were right in front of me.
I started to laugh.
I knew what that meant. 
God had sent me these consolations!
I felt He was saying,
"See?  I told you everything was going to be all right.
I created the universe.
I keep it in motion.
I gave you a beautiful earth on which to live!
I filled this tree with leaves so that, today, when you walked into that dark, parking garage,
you would see Me in the gift of these leaves and laugh.
Trust Me.
That's all I ask.
Trust Me!"

I laughed the rest of the afternoon.  I was filled with joy at the extent of my consolations!

Jesus, I Trust in You!


Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Worth Repeating: Snippets of God - Where do you Find God! I found Him in 100 Different Ways in One Day, on this Day of Love!

Where do You Find God?

The rosy, red sunset.
The touch of a warm breeze in the dead of winter.
The Sloppy, Wet Kisses from my dog.
The smile of a stranger on a bleak day.
Sunrise a few minutes earlier in the day.
Huge, fluffy snowflakes that you catch on your tongue.
Getting home safely when the roads are hazardous.
The Rosary centered in my Hand.
Early Morning Mass.
The Eucharist.
The Joy of seeing friends up early to worship side by side.
The priests who dedicate themselves to God.
The back of the Church, my favorite place to pray
The confessional where I reconcile with God
Breakfast with a friend
Pancakes and bacon
The women and men who pick up my trash on a cold day
The red cardinal that stalks my yard for food
The young man who shovels my sidewalk
The deer I saw scamper through the ravine
The car that stopped to offer a ride to someone walking in the cold.
The pharmacist who gave me advice on my medication
Claire, a young friend who is having a baby
My warm blanket
A delicious meal with a friend
The silence of old friends when words are not needed
The joy of a new friend
A prayer group
My dog cuddling with me in bed
Friends I’ve never met, except online, but are dear to my heart.
The thought of spring getting closer.
Thoughts of Rain
Memories of Thunderstorms
Thoughts of Flowers
A rosemary bush growing inside
The images collected by my camera
Stacks of books ready to read
Notebooks with blank pages for writing or drawing
Wonderful smelling shampoo
Diet Coke
Great food and drink with friends
A gathering of minds for discussion
A wet bump noses from my dog, even if it’s at 4:30 AM
My lava lamp
A wonderful haircut
Snow and easy driving
Prayer with Friends
A phone call from a much loved cousin
A kind word from a friend
A blessing from a friend
A special prayer group
A priest in full vestments saying weekday Mass
A priest who has taken a fifth vow as a slave to Mary
Marian devotions
Remembering the smell of ozone after the rain
The joy of a new baby
Kicking back and reading a book
Whispering a prayer of thanksgiving
A Happy Mistake
A Photo which brings tears to your eyes
Sun Dogs on a cold day
A video which makes you laugh
The kindness of a stranger
The flow of graces after confession
The Whisperings of the Holy Spirit which inspire you to go to confession
A good book
Warm socks on a cold day
A crochet scarf to keep my neck warm
Fingerless gloves which keep my hands warm
A light breakfast
Fresh orange juice
Being home on a snowy day
Lighting a fire to keep warm
My IPad
A wonderful haircut
A luxurious shower
A warm  fluffy towel
Homemade soap
Homemade lotion
Warm, fluffy slippers
Fresh air
A car that starts in the cold
Good sturdy boots
A walk in the snow crystals
Not falling down on the walk
A light in the dark
A flashlight with fresh batteries
A shoveled sidewalk where I plan to walk after the snow
A dog who loves to walk in the snow
A dog who walks slowly in the snow
Putting on my glasses and realizing they are clean
A meal in the crockpot that’s ready for supper
Candles with supper
Soft napkins
Colorful plates
Crusty bread spread with coconut oil

Monday, November 2, 2015

All Souls Day! 9 Ways to Pray for the Souls in Purgatory even when November is over.

When we die, we go to

That's it.
There are no other options.

According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church,

if you die in God's friendship and grace, and you are perfectly purified,
you will be fully united with God in heaven.

If you die in the state of mortal sin,
without repenting,
then you are excluded from the company of God,
and you are in hell.

If you die in God's friendship and grace, but you are not purified from the effects of sin,
then you are in Purgatory until you are purified and the stains of sin are removed from your soul.

November is traditionally the month the Church assigns to remember our dead.
November 2 is known as All Soul's Day.
Yesterday, we remembered our departed who are saints in heaven whether they are canoized or not.
Today, we remember the souls who still suffer greatly in reparation for their sins.

How can we help the souls in Purgatory?

1) Pray for them that they might be released from the bounds of Purgatory and for relief for the sufferings of those who remain.

2) Have Masses offered for those you have loved who have died and for all the Souls in Purgatory.
(We don't know if our loved ones who have died are still in Purgatory or not.  They might be there longer than we think.  If they have already ascended to heaven, your prayers will be used for others there.)

3) Have Gregorian Masses said for the souls of those you love.  They are expensive, but they are worth it to the souls.

4) Recite, from the heart, the prayer of St. Gertrude the Great daily.  It is said to release 1,000 souls everytime it is said.  Make a 1 day novena of this prayer, and you will have released 9,000 souls that day!)

Eternal Father, I offer You the Most Precious Blood of Your Divine Son, Jesus, in union with all of the Masses of the World said today, in reparation for sin, for the Holy Souls in Purgatory, for sinners everywhere, for sinners in the Universal Church, those within my own home, and within my family.

5) Offer your daily Rosary for the Holy Souls in Purgatory.

6) Recite this short prayer many times through out the day.

Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, I love you.  
Save Souls.

7) Make sacrifices and practice mortifications for the Souls in Purgatory.

a) Give up that extra cup of coffee in the morning.  You might need one to function.
b) Refuse to engage in gossip.
c) Give up that evening glass of wine.
d) Fast for a day if physically possible.
e) Attend daily Mass for the Souls.

8) Visit a cemetery and pray for the souls there.  Take holy water and sprinkle it on the ground for the Holy Souls.

9) Remember, when it's December or June, pray for the Souls.  They are always there.  They suffer terribly for their sins.  They cannot help themselves.  They only have us to pray for them.
Pray! Pray! Pray!

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Happy All Saints Day and a quiz.

Saints were...

human beings who overcame their inclination to sin and become holy in the eyes of God.

True or False?


Saints had their faults.

True or False?


St. Jerome had a terrible temper.

St. Augustine led a very sinful life until he converted and became a doctor of the Church and a great saint.

Matt Talbot was an alcoholic.

True or False?


Not everyone is saint material.

True of False?


We are all called to become holy.  Sometimes that holiness entails praying for our children and never giving up on them, as St. Monica did with Augustine.  Sometimes, holiness means being honest in our business dealings with others.  The opportunity is for everyone to become holy, whether they be new born or 100 years old.  As long as we live, we are called on to be holy.

If I make it to heaven, I'll never be canonized.

True or False?

If you make it to heaven, you are pure and holy, and you are a saint.  It won't matter if you aren't canonized.  You will be in heaven.  You will be a saint.

Tomorrow, we pray for our dead.  
It's All Souls Day.