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“Look at Him, even just for a moment”

Christina:

Beautiful reflection

Originally posted on 8 Kids And A Business:

Life is extremely busy. I’m taking another parish nursing online course and my days are filled with family/work/school/volunteer commitments. There’s never enough time.

When the calendar is overflowing, it’s easy to rush through prayer, or worse, stop spending time in quiet prayer. These days, I have to force myself to be still before the Lord.

Providentially, a friend gave me this piece of writing from St. Teresa of Avila. Her wisdom is exactly what a busy person needs.

220px-Claude_Mellan_-_Face_of_Christ_-_WGA14764

“I’m not asking you now that you think about Him or that you draw out a lot of concepts or make long and subtle reflections with your intellect. I’m not asking you to do anything more than look at Him. For who can keep you from turning the eyes of your soul toward this Lord, even if you do so just for a moment if you can’t do more?

He has suffered…

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Posted by on 02/05/2015 in Uncategorized

 

A Better Lent Than Last Year

A Better Lent Than Last Year

Over at The Catholic Gentleman, Mr. Guzman has a post on 7 Ways To Have A Good Lent. Check it out, cause it is solid awesomeness. Also on that page is a link for a worksheet, which can help you make goals and give things up for a truly holy Lent. They fall under three categories: voluntary amendment of life, acts of penance, and works of charity.

I won’t share the other things that I’m giving up, but the voluntary amendment of life part will be this:  I am giving up all internet for Lent. As each month passes, I find myself moaning over something Pope Francis said, cheering for something that Fr. John Zuhlsdorf wrote (he is pretty darn awesome), or sharing yet another article about the Traditional Latin Mass on Facebook (I do this a LOT).  It is good to know what is going on in the Catholic world, and what new challenges there are for the Church Militant to face; I find this to be important and usually edifying. There are a lot of wonderful resources out there. But as I said last week in a conversation with a friend of mine, “I need a break from all of it.  Sometimes I think it is better for me not to know what is going on, and to simply place it all in God’s hands.” He responded, “Indeed.  Often, it is better for us to do penance and practice submitting ourselves to the Will of God. This helps us to rely on Him and become holy.”

I want this Lent to be a time of spiritual renewal and growth. I want to make it more challenging than last year so that I am forced to give myself over to God more and more each day. This is a time for a lot of self-improvement and character development. Instead of spending time on the computer, I will be reading The Imitation of Christ for a second time, learning some Gregorian chant, praying the Stations of the Cross, and practising just being in the presence of God.  Oh yes, and that Mozart…..

So that is what I am doing. There will be no blog post from me in March, but I’ll be back in April. May God bless you, and may you have a holy Lent!

 

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Belated Christmas greetings. Also, music.

As I write this, it is practically my favorite sort of December weather outside: fifteen degrees below zero (Celsius), fluffy snowflakes falling, frosty trees, and just a little breeze giving a “nip” to the air. This is one of those wonderful wintery days that brings classic Christmas card images to mind. The kids and I will probably go sledding this afternoon, but for now I have piano to practice.

 

Ah yes, I am a pianist. This is a detail I haven’t spoken much about on the blog. I started piano (under duress) when I was five years old, and I changed teachers a number of times. I am currently playing Grade 9 repertoire (Royal Conservatory). Music is one of the things that gives me a reason to get up in the morning. Even listening to it can leaving me feeling refreshed, in awe, or with a new outlook on life in general. The latest piece I am working on is Mozart’s 1782 Fantasia in D Minor. Exciting, really. To God be all the glory. :)

Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet,
    praise him with the harp and lyre,
 praise him with timbrel and dancing,
    praise him with the strings and pipe,
 praise him with the clash of cymbals,
    praise him with resounding cymbals.

 Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.

Praise the Lord.     Psalm 150:3-6, NIV

 
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Posted by on 29/12/2014 in Daily life, Faith, family, Music, Scripture

 

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Gregorian chant for Advent

A little Gregorian chant to kick off your Advent. I realize that not quite all of it is actually chant, but it is still lovely. Enjoy, and God bless!

 

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Discouragement and keeping the faith in this time

With the synod going on in Rome and all of the disparaging reports coming out of it, I feel extremely discouraged. This is not like my usual self. On most days, I am joyful, eager to do God’s Will, and full of energy. The past few days have left me very worried and sick about the division among the cardinals. So instead of wasting all my time on worrying, I made a list of little phrases and thoughts to encourage me and keep me going. I would like to share them with you.

-Have courage!

-The Church has survived this far.

-Christ will not abandon His Bride and leave Her to the wolves.

-Fidelity…fides…faith…

-Be hopeful.

-There are still some who defend the Truth.

-“Christ will guard His own!” St. Agnes

-The bishops and the Holy Father may not have a solid plan of attack, but God does!

“Remember, I am with you always until the end of time.” Matthew 28:20

-Pray and fast, giving glory to God.

“…and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it.” Matthew 16:18

-Trust in God’s plan.

-“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding.” Proverbs 3:5

-Keep busy serving the Lord.

-“Even if I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…” Psalm 23:4

-Love beyond limits, imitating Christ.

-Thank God and praise Him for His goodness!

-Be a saint every minute of the day.

Also, this.

 

 

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What I wish I had said

I spent a good part of my summer at camp. By “a good part”, I mean six weeks. First there was Camp St. Louis, then Captivenia, then more Camp St. Louis, then Ignite to finish things off. It was a great summer. I met wonderful people and got to counsel a lot of great kids. They always make me reflect a little on my own life, too. In the younger kids I see the innocence of faith and the simple, pure love that Christ wants all of us to have. In the older kids, those in their early teens, I see that same struggle that I felt not so many years ago; that struggle for power within them. “Will I serve God or not? What is my choice?”

Many of these kids come from Catholic homes and no doubt, they hear it in church or at school: the Church has called for a New Evangelization. Of course, they don’t know exactly what this means, or how to carry it out. There is the evangelization that must take place outside of the Church, but there is also the evangelizing within the Church that must take place. The point that I want to focus on the most is the first one: showing those in the secular world the light and beauty of the Catholic faith.

The best way of doing this is by example. If you practice virtue and live as the best Christian you can, people will notice and take interest in your religion. You must practice your faith to the fullest! Become a living saint! That is how you draw people to Christ.

Now, I doubt that saying that would inspire them. More likely, they would run screaming in the other direction. So thank God I didn’t give them that lecture. But I wish I had said something to them, now that we’re after the fact; something along these lines: when you are among others who know you are a Catholic, you become for them a representative of the Catholic Church. There is a little food for thought. When an artist goes to paint someone’s portrait, he wants his representation of that person to be as true to life as possible. Likewise, we should try to represent the Catholic Church (or even further, to represent Christ Himself) to them.

 

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VIDEO: The Chapel Veil

Reading Fr. Z’s blog (WDTPRS) I came across this awesome video which explains the chapel veil. Quick note: chapel veil is used here as a blanket term and covers hats, mantillas, headscarves, etc. Anyways, enjoy the video!

VIDEO: The Chapel Veil.

 

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