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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Halloween is celebrated now as the eve of the Feast of All Saints - I guess the Church realized that the fun so many were having on this last day of October could also prepare for a more religious celebration of all the saints in heaven and then, the next day, have a special ceremony for all the poor souls not yet in heaven. I just like to think of our part now in the Communion of Saints. We pray to those who have gone before us and are now united to God for all eternity; we pray for those who might still be waiting for this eternal union. I think all Hallow's Eve is a great institution if it really makes us aware of the Communion of Saints. I also think it is still a fun time for so many. We have the traditional bag of candy ready!
One of my first years in Miami caught me out on Halloween. I tried to drive through Coconut Grove to get home and found that people could walk faster than the cars could move. However, the multitude of walkers were all in costume and I found myself in a long parade with everyone waving and ghosts swooping down on the drivers, witches and pumpkins coming off the sidewalks to parade in between the cars, etc. It was quite an experience but I have never tried to repeat it. I prefer to stay in and hand out candy and treat myself!
I wrote about some of my childhood memories of Halloween last week, so just want to say "Happy Halloween!" And remember to prepare for the great feast of All the Saints!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

What really matters?

When we have lost neither heaven nor hope, what else matters? This quote of St. Madeleine Sophie that I copied off of our  Province website makes for reflection. It puts things in our lives in perspective. I am realizing that just thinking about what I am grateful for each day is a way of examining my life; everything is gift and it is so good to go back and thank God even for past memories.
I am trying to clear out and throw away so much accumulated over the years. I was looking at some of the cards and pictures I had saved from my last trip to Scotland and the friends I made there. It was so much fun but also a really deep spiritual experience for me to stay at the house of prayer on Iona - I think we were two nights there but it left an impression on me as I thought of so many who had come there seeking God. I also will never forget the ride across Scotland from Perth, the Garden Cottage, being with three of my International Online students and meeting some wonderful Religious of the Sacred Heart - and then I went to England and that was another experience of great hospitality. So, there is much to be grateful for today in the present and in the past and, since I feel that I have lost neither heaven nor hope, what else matters?

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

We are part of the universe...

This morning I was praying over the document of the Society of the Sacred Heart's Chapter of 2008. I think the part on community drew me today as I am thinking of the importance of relationships. As Religious of the Sacred Heart we are called to follow Jesus in community..."Deeply rooted in our relationship with Jesus, we reaffirm that life in community is a fundamental expression of our spirituality."

"Community is a basic way of organizing ourselves, a space where we take decisions together for our lives and mission. Community on all levels is both mission and for mission."

These quotes are worth pondering and go with the homily that I used in part for the community prayer Sunday night from Pope Francis' on "family" - It was the day of the family but doubt that most of us were aware of that. Anyway, it is important to pray together as families; I think it is even more important that our communities pray together. We try on Sundays to do this but many manage to be together in prayer each day. I guess the most important thing is to be deeply rooted in our relationship with Jesus.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Monday again and I wish you a good week!

What am I most grateful for in my life now? It is hard decide but I think my gratitude evolves around relationships. First of all, my relationship with Jesus and knowing that we are all united to Jesus and this is such a grace! Then, there are all the other relationships that have taught me what love means and continue to do so. I am grateful for so many people in my life and think I need to thank for them in prayer. I have been blessed with wonderful family, friends, and some are still so present in my life even if living in another country. I just feel connected with a multitude of people and need to take time to thank God for all these tremendous people who are helping me in so many ways.
I am just remembering a line from Thomas Merton that says so much to me about prayer: "How does an apple ripen? It just sits in the sun."
The picture is of a sunset but makes me feel calm and peaceful as I begin this new week!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

The Pharisee and the Publican

This Sunday's Gospel has me recognizing how much I am like the Pharisee in the parable Jesus told about the two men who went to the temple to pray. The truth is that I know I am like that Pharisee outside of prayer, but when I go to pray, I identify more with the publican who only could say "Be merciful to me, a sinner."
Today I want to share something I thought worthwhile on perseverance. It is copied from the Internet e-mails I get advertising books and giving some inspirational quotes.

Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which they have overcome. -Booker T. Washington
If someone were to ask me to pick one word to best describe any success I've had in my life....I wouldn't hesitate; the word would be perseverance.

There have been a lot of potholes, detours and roadblocks along the way. I can only wish that I had BJ Gallagher's book to provide inspiration as I fought through my times of adversity. It is terrific!

The table of contents will give you a little "snapshot" of what it's all about:


• Persist no matter what.
• Endure discomfort.
• Request help.
• Steadfastly hold on to your beliefs and values.
• Envision triumph.
• Very consistently keep at it.
• Embrace adversity as your teacher.
• Refuse to give up.
• Enjoy and celebrate every tiny bit of progress!

Today, I'd like to share a chapter in The Best Way Out is Always Through. Enjoy!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Giving joy to others


Today I found a new and really easy way to make others happy! I am passing it on as it was quite a discovery for me to make - I am sure I had noticed before how happy people are to be recognized for something nice, and I know how I feel myself when someone tells me that I have made their day! As I have started to keep a gratitude journal again, I just mentioned that my gym instructor was in my gratitude journal as I really appreciated how she makes us work out - something I would not do by myself. She just lit up and so I thought of others who I would put in my gratitude journal and each one seemed so grateful and happy that I think we will raise the level of joy if all of us go around thanking the people in our lives for all they do!

My cursor is going backwards today and I do not know why nor do I seem to remember how to fix this problem so I am quiting but you have lots to reflect upon today. Just tell people you are putting them in your gratitude journal and see how they react. The smiles are reward enough, but I think I am feeling more joy because I have been able to give some joy to others. And this has been in the midst of some frustrating moments today that I am just not going to think about but I need to tell you that I am writing this blog on Friday and posting it for Saturday. The Mass at noon was packed and many were there because of a new statue of Our Lady  which is now up on a pedastal - this statue shows a pregnant Mary and a whole new group of people were there today and were going to have special prayers after Mass, but I left with most of the regulars only to find the parking lot overflowing with cars and quite difficult to get out of as some were double-parked, others in the fire lanes, and it started to rain to add to the confusion. The rain did not last and I was grateful for that and for the fact that no one was parked behind me so I could get out and home!

Friday, October 25, 2013


Gratitude makes us joyful! Try it and see. I am finding so many things to thank for that I cannot write them all. If we look around us, there is beauty everywhere. And the joy of just being able to see, to walk, to be able to think, read, pray, hear music, drive a car, go to the gym, etc. I guess I am a happy person but the practice of gratitude fills me with joy so do start thanking for all the daily gifts we have.
I am being brief today but start thanking God now and see how your attitude to everything is full of joy!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

What a day to be grateful...

I love Thursdays but I think I am loving every single day as I have started to really look for the tiny things to thank God for each day. It does make a difference as I see everything as gift and an opportunity to thank - even for the times I do not respond as I should. That is also reason for gratitude as it means that I recognize that I am not acting as Jesus would and feel gratitude that He has let me see this. I do not know why I stopped looking for moments to thank but it is good to be back doing this again. Life is so short and there is so much to be thankful for at each moment. I am grateful that I had a good day of gratitude yesterday and seem to be full of joy each time I feel grateful for the gift of the present moment.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Haloween is coming

There is something about the last day of October that makes me nostalgic for all those wonderful Halloween parties and "trick or treats" of my youth. After I entered, I saw the day only as the eve of all Saints until I came to Miami and we decorated the house for Halloween. We actually had a coffin with a skeleton in the living room and cobwebs hanging from everything. Some of it was really spooky but fun. I am still thinking of the great parties of my childhood. I think that those kind of memories give joy no matter how many years later. In sixth grade I was invited to go out in costume with a classmate who lived in Parkview Place and also went to the Visitation Academy with me. I remember mostly going back to her house and having hot cocoa and sandwiches served for just the two of us - I think it made me feel so grown-up. In seventh grade I had some classmates from St. Roch's over and my mother helped me plan an old-fashioned Halloween party: we decorated the third floor, bobbed for apples in the bathtub up there, and did all sorts of fun things as well as enjoying a feast complete with caramel-coated apples and cupcakes with orange icing and the face of a witch or pumpkin on each one. My friends still remember that party that was 69 years ago! Then, at St. Charles, we had great parties given by the Juniors in the High School. As we were boarders, the party began with a special supper and then, when it was my class giving the party, we went to a darkened, decorated varsity room where the three witches from Macbeth were muttering over a false fire in the corner. I know we had a "House of Horrors, and then, the crowning moment of the party was a walk to the graveyard (the nuns were still buried in a cemetery on the grounds) and just as we passed through, ghosts hidden behind bushes began to moan. It was all great fun and I am sorry that it is not safe for the children today to go around the neighborhood - some, of course, still do and that is why we have a huge, unopened bag of miniature candy bars sitting in our kitchen and tempting me to recall the loot of former days. Most of the children today come to the door with their parents standing just a few feet behind them. Well, this again is not a very spiritual blog, but we do want to prepare for the feast of All Saints on Friday!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Do be a saint, why not?

I watched the video from San Francisco that started off a year of preparation for the Network schools to celebrate the centenary of the death of Reverend Mother Stuart yesterday and it made me think of this quotation from her that I love. I suspect that I have shared it before, but it is good to read again:

"Yes, do be a saint; why not? What else is worth living for, caring about; and every little thing in the day may help you on towards it, if you will look at it on the right side as coming to you from our dearest God, who is so in with us in our daily troubles and duties, for whom nothing is too great or too small, who is so understanding and loving to all our moods and aches and longings, and asks only one thing, that we should take our worries to Him to be comforted, and our joys to be blessed, and our gulps of trouble to be quieted down; if you have Him in the details of your life with you, all is well, and you can manage anything; the one thing to avoid is thinking hard and hateful and unworthy thought of Him and misunderstanding Him. So love Him and trust Him all you can, and let nothing take you away from the keep of that strong castle, God the refuge of His people."

We want to be joyous saints and must keep looking for the positive side of each thing that happens to us as God is with us and loving us and Mother Stuart inspires me to really try to be joyful and trusting and loving no matter what.

Monday, October 21, 2013

How easyily I accumulate so much...

I am into clearing out and finding that I have just allowed myself to accumulate piles of papers, cards, prayers, old papers from meetings, etc. I am never going to need all of this and do not even remember what I have and so I am now clearing out and I am determined to keep at it all week until I have been through everything. Pray that I really get rid of things and not just move them around the way I do with my books! Books are something I do keep but all the rest needs to go or be given to some one who can use all the extra things I have accumulated. I think the problem was having to get out of my office at the University so quickly; I did give away almost all the books I had in my office but had to bring so many papers home to sort through and have never done that. I just filled a file cabinet and "out of sight, out of mind." Now I hope that I can really throw away and be ruthless - this may need your prayer as I realize that I keep more than I need and so I intend to go through everything and hope I can do it in a week! I got a good start today and now need a bigger waste-basket. This is a Fall house-cleaning and I seem to be motivated but also find it easy to stop and start to read all the papers, letters from friends that I kept but do not need to keep, etc.
This may not be a very spiritual blog, but there is something about clearing out that prepares us for a a self-emptying that makes more room for God. I am doing all this before Halloween this year and not waiting for Advent. May be you want to join me in a good clearing out of old files, keepsakes, etc.

What am I grateful for today?

As I begin this new week, I am thinking of all the things that I am grateful for and especially the little Monday morning joys. My clothes are in the washer; I had a longer time for prayer early this morning and realized again how much God loves us. We are really His beloved and He takes delight in us! We are so loved and cherished and are called to give that love to others. I just am so grateful that I have lived these lines from St. John of the Cross: "Put love where there is no love and you will find love."  I am grateful for the many ways I can show my love for others but, most of all, I am grateful for the tremendous, infinite, unconditional love of God! So, I am skipping the gym today and that is not good, but sometimes there are other things that seem more important. I need to write to some, cook for my community, and dust bookcases today and I am grateful that I am able to do all these things with joy! I just feel grateful for the gift of life!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Dawn of a New Day, A New Week

This picture always gives me joy! The sun always arrives no matter how dark the night! I am thinking of both Mater today and this Sunday's Gospel which has the woman pleading for justice from the unjust judge who finally gives in because he is afraid she will do him harm. Jesus tells us that God is going to hear us but we must have faith and keep on "bothering" God with our insistence in pleading for justice in our world that is so full of injustice.
May this give us joy today - I hope Sarah does not mind me sharing this excerpt that was on the internet:

No matter what your circumstances may be, you can find Joy in My presence. On some days Joy is generously strewn along your life-path... other days are overcast and gloomy... yet Joy is still attainable. Search for it as for hidden treasure
Begin by remembering that I have created this day; it is not a chance occurrence. Recall that I am present with you... then, start talking with Me. Awareness of My marvelous Companionship can infuse Joy into the grayest day.
Psalm 21:6; Proverbs 2:4
Daily devotional excerpt from Jesus Calling by Sarah Young.
  May your day be sunny and full of joy!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Celebrating Mater's Feast Today

I will be joining the alums at Carrollton for Mass and lunch and really look forward to this. When looking for something else, I found a program for the Mass from another year and remember that I kept it as I loved the first reading. It is from the Book of Sirach 24:23-31 and I shall copy it here: "Wisdom overflows, like the Pishon, with wisdom--like the Tigris in the days of the new fruits. Wisdom runs over, like the Euphrates, with understaning, like the Jordan at harvest time. Wisdom sparkles like the Nile with knowledge, like the Gihon at vintage time. The first person never finished comprehending wisdom, nor will the last succeed in fathoming her. For deeper than the sea are her thoughts; her counsels, that the great abyss. Now I, like a rivulet from her stream, channeling the waters into a garden, said to myself, "I will water my plants, my flower bed I will drench". And suddenly this rivulet of mine became a river, then this stream of mine, a sea. Thus do I send my teachings forth shining like the dawn, to become known afar off. Thus do I pour out instruction like prophecy and bestow it on generations to come."

This applied to Mater is terrific insight - at least it struck me as a deep, new insight into her wisdom!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Love changes everything...

Feeling rather uninspired today, I came across these words to a song and thought I would share them with you as love does change everything!

Love , love changes everything,
hands and faces, earth and sky
Love, love changes everything.
How you live and how you die
Love, can make the summer fly,
Or a night seem like a lifetime
Yes love, love changes everything,
Now I tremble at your name
Nothing in the world will ever be the same.

Love, love changes everything,
Days are longer, words mean more
Love, love changes everything.
Pain is deeper, than before
Love, will turn our world around,
And that world will last forever
Yes, love, love changes everything,
Brings you glory, brings you shame
Nothing in the world will ever be the same.

Off into the world we go,
Planning futures, shaping years
Love bursts in and suddenly,
All our wisdom disappears
Love, makes fools of everyone,
All the rules we make are broken
Yes, love, love changes everyone,
live or perish, in its flame
Love will never, never let you be the same
Love will never, never let you be the same.

The old saying "Love makes the world go round" is so true when you stop and reflect on it.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

My favorite image of the Sacred Heart

This is a statue of the Sacred Heart that we prayed in front of as novices. It is now at Carrollton. It is my favorite image of the Jesus. It is fitting to think of how much the devotion to the Heart of Jesus has influenced us since the time of St. Margaret Mary. She is the one who furthered the devotion as she received the four great apparitions of Jesus showing her His Heart and asking her to establish the Feast of the Sacred Heart, and Jesus also asked for the holy hour, the practice of receiving Holy Communion on First Fridays, and making reparation. He told her how much He loves us only to receive ingratitude in is a feast to renew our own love for Jesus and to realize that His Heart wait for us. It was opened on the cross for us and Jesus wants us to let Him love us and for us to love Him.
Today is really the Feast of St. Ignatius of Antioch - he wrote some great letters on the way to Rome to be eaten by lions; his letters give us a good picture of what it meant to be a Christian in the first century. He was a holy bishop and wanted to die for Christ.
This picture of the statue of the Sacred Heart was taken for me by a dear friend on the faculty at Carrollton; she also just sent me a framed picture of the same statue and I will hang it in my room as it helps me to pray for the world.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Preparing for the Feast of St. Margaret Mary

Tomorrow is the Feast of St. Margaret Mary. She really helped to spread devotion to the Sacred Heart and, as she was a Visitation nun, she was one of the first saints I learned about as a child. Here is something from the Catholic Encyclopedia so you will have an idea of both how she suffered and how careful the Church is in canonizing someone.

Margaret Mary was inspired by Christ to establish the Holy Hour and to pray lying prostrate with her face to the ground from eleven till midnight on the eve of the first Friday of each month, to share in the mortal sadness He endured when abandoned by His Apostles in His Agony, and to receive holy Communion on the first Friday of every month. In the first great revelation, He made known to her His ardent desire to be loved by men and His design of manifesting His Heart with all Its treasures of love and mercy, of sanctification and salvation. He appointed the Friday after the octave of the feast of Corpus Christi as the feast of the Sacred Heart; He called her "the Beloved Disciple of the Sacred Heart", and the heiress of all Its treasures. The love of the Sacred Heart was the fire which consumed her, and devotion to the Sacred Heart is the refrain of all her writings. In her last illness she refused all alleviation, repeating frequently: "What have I in heaven and what do I desire on earth, but Thee alone, O my God", and died pronouncing the Holy Name of Jesus.
The discussion of the mission and virtues of Margaret Mary continued for years. All her actions, her revelations, her spiritual maxims, her teachings regarding the devotion to the Sacred Heart, of which she was the chief exponent as well as the apostle, were subjected to the most severe and minute examination, and finally the Sacred Congregation of rites passed a favourable vote on the heroic virtues of this servant of God. In March, 1824, Leo XII pronounced her Venerable, and on 18 September, 1864, Pius IX declared her Blessed. When her tomb was canonically opened in July, 1830, two instantaneous cures took place. Her body rests under the altar in the chapel at Paray, and many striking favours have been obtained by pilgrims attracted thither from all parts of the world. Her feast is celebrated on 17 October. [Editor's Note: St. Margaret Mary was canonized by Benedict XV in 1920.]

New Books

These are not my bookshelves; mine are too full to display anything except books except for some corner hanging shelves in my bedroom. Anyway, these serve to explain that I am adding some new books today to my list. I will try to start a new list as the other is too long now and I do not seem to be able to change the font to make new additions stand out. Anyway, here are some great books to add and I will confess that I have read only part of each of these books but I like them and want to tell you a bit about them.
"Prayer of the Heart in Christian & Sufi Mysticism" by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee. Published by
The Golden Sufi Center, 2012. It is a small book but I think the Chapter Heading will tell you about it and it seems to be a good resource to have. After a Foreword by Cynthia Bourgeault, there is an Introduction and then these Chapters: Prayer and Listening; Stages of Prayer; The Jesus Prayer and the DHIKR; The Circle of Love; The Heart Prays; Prayer for the Earth; Personal Prayer followed by Notes, Index, and an excellent Bibliography.
The next book that I am using and rather skipping around in to get the feel for the book is The First Spiritual Exercises: Four Guided Retreats. As Originally Conceived by St. Ignatius Loyola and Adapted by Michael Hansen, S.J. It is a book that contains more than the four, four-week retreats of Ignatius adapted by Father Hansen. There is a section on Spiritual Progress and then Guides and Helps make up the second part of the book. It is a useful book as it gives so many helps in one place; there are different ways to make an examen, ways to pray, helps for spiritual journaling, and, of course, the Ignatian guide to the Discernment of Spirits.
A third book is not yet in my hands but the sample pages made me order it. Years ago I had read something  by David M. Knight on the Sacrament of Reconciliation; this new book of his is called A Fresh Look at Confession: why it really is good for the soul. Here are his Chapter titles: The Sacrament of Self-Identity; The Sacrament of the Examined Life; The Sacrament of the Spirit; The Sacrament of the Flesh; The Sacrament of Stewardship; A Birdseye Review; The Empty Tomb; and an Appendix and Endnotes.

I f you are looking for good spiritual reading and have finished Jesus: An Historical Approximation, these seem to be good books to have around. I am also reading two other books about Jesus and going back to the above mentioned one that I love.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Feast of St. Teresa of Avila

Teresa is one of the great mystics of the sixteenth century. Her writings are still read for their wisdom and her explanation of different levels of prayer. Her "Interior Castle" is a classic and I love her "Life"; she had great common sense, spiritual wisdom, and energy. She founded convents for the reformed Carmelites all over Spain. I had the joy of teaching a course in Spain on the Spanish mystics and taking the students to Avila. Here is a quote I like: "“A sad nun is a bad nun,” she said. “I am more afraid of one unhappy sister than a crowd of evil spirits….What would happen if we hid what little sense of humor we had? Let each of us humbly use this to cheer others.”
She had a good sense of humor herself and was really a remarkable woman who is also a Doctor of the Church!
I promised to speak about new books that I have bought and have begun to read. I will do this tomorrow.

Monday, October 14, 2013

A Week of Feasts

Today is a double holiday! Canadian Thanksgiving Day and Columbus Day. Both days bring some memories and it is good to rejoice in the union of the United States Province with Canada. My community is looking forward to having a Canadian Religious of the Sacred Heart arrive on November 1 to stay with us.
The twenty years I spent in Chile made me aware that the Spanish celebrate October 12, not as Chistopher Columbus Day but as the day of Spanish race. When I only 12 years old , I wanted to read one of my father's "Book of the Month Club" books. The book I wanted to read was "A Tree Grows In Brooklyn" but my Dad told me I should first read another "Book of the Month" - it was a huge life of Christopher Columbus! I was soon learning about his life in Italy and then caught up into the history of Spain, and ships, and then his voyages. When I finished it, I did read "A Tree Grows In Brooklyn" and cried for I found it sad.
This is a week of feasts with great saints so stay tuned as tomorrow we celebrate Saint Teresa of Avila! 
Then we have St. Margaret Mary, St. Ignatius of Antioch, St. Luke, St. John de Brebeuf, Issac Jogues and Companions, and Mater. Mater is a feast for all those connected with the Society of the Sacred Heart and you can read a daily reflection this month with a different picture of Mater on our website - 
Tomorrow I will speak about a couple of new books that I have and am trying to read.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Where are the other nine?

Ten lepers meet Jesus and ask to be healed. He tells them to go show themselves to the priests as off they go. When they realize that Jesus has cured them, only one returns to glorify God and thank Jesus. And Jesus asks, "Where are the other nine?"
This Gospel has always been connected with my early call to follow Jesus in religious life. I realized that Jesus has a human heart and looked for gratitude from those he loved. This Samaritan, one who was certainly not a friend of the Jews, is the only one who returns to thank Jesus. As a child, I realized that so many good people did not stop to thank for the many good gifts God is constantly giving us and I wanted to make up for this indifference and lack of love. It was one of the ways that Jesus attracted me to leave all and become a Religious of the Sacred Heart. I still am attracted to the attitude of gratitude and hope that I am remembering to return and praise God by being grateful for each moment so full of His gifts!

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Leisure is a gift to thank God for and we have week ends!!

Saturday is a day to enjoy more time to watch college football, clear off desk, read, and prepare for the Sunday Liturgy that I prefer to go to on Saturday evening. We do not cook on Saturday so our evening seems longer and we can sleep later on Sunday, if we wish to do so. I do think that having a week end is a great grace and this is going to be a three-day week end! There is much to thank for and Saturday is a good day to reflect on the gifts of the past week and prepare to thank for all that is coming next week. I guess the Sunday Gospel has really made me think of how often I am like the lepers who do not return to give thanks to God.
I do not want to neglect Christopher Columbus but, since we are celebrating his day on Monday, I guess he will not mind that I wait until then to share a memory.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Friday Fun

It seems that each day in the week is special and I seem to have been reflecting on this in my blogs. I find Friday a happy day as one is aware of two days to sleep a little later perhaps and just enjoy the fact that all of us are having fun just being home together.
I love autumn and miss it in Miami so have gone looking for images to recall the turning of the leaves, the smell of bonfires, the crisp, cool air that blows the leaves around and the gentle rain that so often appears in October - I am, of course, remembering my childhood days in St. Louis where we roamed through Forest Park after watching the boys play football; we could bike everywhere without fear; I do not remember any crimes being reported in our neighborhood and the park was a safe place about seventy years ago. How time flies but how vivid are our memories!
I am going back over some of these early memories to thank God for all the things I did not think to thank for then. How much I have to be grateful for and how this gratitude makes me feel so joyful even when I realize that many of my friends are now no longer on earth. I am getting to have an whole host of friends with God and that also is good news. In a sense, a very real sense, they are closer to me now.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Thursdays Are Spiritually Enriching!

Thursdays find me at St.Thomas University for noon Mass, picnic lunch with a longtime spiritual friend,
and then a faculty faith-sharing group. We begin with Centering Prayer and then do Lectio Divina on the next Sunday's Gospel. This is all so life-giving for me!
This Thursday evening I also have a wonderful Reflection Group that meets for supper, prayer, and sharing on our chosen book. We are using Jose Pagola's "Jesus: An Historical approximation", one of the best books I have read on Jesus.
Some Thursdays I also have a visit with my Spiritual Director so I usually make sure I have extra time before Mass to review my month. I am most grateful for Thursdays!
I wrote this blog on my I-Pad but am pleased to say that AT&T showed up yesterday and we are back on wireless with a new number and password. 
I love this picture and think it is good just to meditate in front of it. 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Great day!

Wednesday - middle of our five day work week!

I love Wednesdays! I try to get to the gym and Mass and sometimes have something scheduled for later, but usually the morning is for writing or whatever needs to be done. I can look back on what I have done the first two days of this work week and thank God for helping me get at least some of the important things accomplished. I often thing that maybe God and I have different priorities about some of the things, but try to follow what He seems to indicate as the most necessary. Then, I always look forward to Thursday when I am with great spiritual friends at the University and having prayer and sharing with them. This Thursday I also have my reflection group to prepare for and enjoy!
One of my community has taken our computer and phones off the wireless to try to improve our reception and link all with the television. She disconnected things but has not yet found a way to get them back. It cost me a useless seventy mile drive as no one could get through to me to tell me the meeting had been postponed - even my I-phone did not get the texts and e-mails. I was able to make Mass at the University yesterday and then write this blog as I do not know when help will come to restore our computer at home. I am trying to see what God is saying to me in all of this.
Anyway, have a blessed Wednesday and thank God that we have a day in the middle of the week to pause and take stock of where He is leading us! Then, let us go on with courage and confidence.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Tuesday Meeting

Back in 1989, since I had begun a training program for spiritual directors, I joined a supervision group. We still meet every month. Now our meeting seems more like group spiritual direction as we spend three hours just listening to each other; we share what is going on in our lives - both joys and sorrows. After 25 years, some of the sharing concerns suffering - loss of someone dear, surgeries, and just painful moments, but there is also a sense of God's action in our lives and that gives joy. I rejoice in the way my friends respond to whatever God is sending them during the month,. I rejoice when I hear about the good that is being done by each even as we grow older. We have a great deal of collective wisdom and holiness in our group and I find the meeting life-giving. I think all of us need to share more with others the way God works in our lives. I think He comes to us in so many ways: through a chance encounter, an e-mail or phone call, or a book. When we take time to reflect on our lives, we find God is surrounding us with His love and attentions and we miss so many of these. My prayer today is to be more conscious of God's presence in my life!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Joyful Monday!

 Why should we say "Joyful Monday"? Why not? It is a new week to love and serve the Lord! It is a new week to discover His Love in so many ways. Monday is a day of surprises! It is a day to thank for the beginning of another week, whatever our work. We look at the days to come and see that they are filled with things to do - some of these are things we really want to do; others may be just things we need to do but we can find joy in the fact that we are able to do these things! I need to stop and thank for the fact that I can see; I can walk; I can drive; I can sit here at the computer and be in touch with my friends... all things we so often take for granted.
This week, my "to do" list will contain only the things I know I can do each day and then I can cross them off with joy. One of my community told me a long time ago that I had to be realistic about a "to do" list - if I only put two or three things on my list and know that I will get them done, I can rejoice and even pat myself on the back. I am really going to try this for October! I do intend to get back to writing that book! Love and prayer to all my faithful readers. I do hope that what the Holy Spirit inspires me to write will be a help to all!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

What A Wonderful Week!

Giving a Busy Persons' Retreat is really a wonderful experience and I am so grateful to be part of this wonderful RSCJ Team of Spiritual Companions. I had six retreatants (all such lovely, interesting people) and, because some of the retreatants seemed interested in forming a group to continue to deepen their spirituality, we decided to meet one night a month at my home; however, as nineteen signed up for this, we will need to have two groups. Our first meeting is October 16 so do pray for this.
I am glad to be back on the blog again and hope you have been looking at the daily entries on Mater.
I also have been reading all I can find on what the Holy Father, Pope Francis, is saying and doing. He has given me such hope for the Church. Let us have faith and be able to work miracles as Jesus tells us in the Gospel.
It was a very full week for me and I face another one, but I feel so energized by the prayer and sharing of this past week. I feel as if God is calling me to wake up and experience His Love in new ways and give His love to others.