It feels like my whole life has been preparing me for this journey into nursing. This semester, I have fallen in love with this new path and with God ‘s people who are sick, wounded and dying. I am constantly amazed as He opens doors on this path, all the beautiful souls, the amazing opportunities- the latest a nurse externship in Oncology!

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Something was not quite right

I’ve been so wrapped up in the thing God brought me to do, I began to miss Him in it and my soul began to suffer for it.

I started saying I didn’t have time to choose something specific for a Lent, to go to Ash Monday, to reflect in prayer, then Stations…because I had to study. I want to complete the task God has given me so badly, that I allowed the weight of it to distract me. I will never make it without taking time for Him first.

In confession last week, Aboona and I talked about it and he gave me Psalm 27 as my penance. I mediated all week and last night we went to Stations. I wept with the women who saw Him on the road suffering, I could hear his Mother crying…

If I don’t feel quite right, it’s usually because I have moved from His Light just enough for a shadow to began to cast on my soul. Lent is an awesome time to be reminded of who is important in our lives. If you are also feeling things aren’t quite right in your world, I tell you move back into the Light of His Presence, Psalm 27, and your soul will come right again.

Blessed Lent my friends! Wherever the journey takes you, may you walk without fear.

Holy day of privilege, the Feast of St. Maroun

Today’s Divine Liturgy was so refreshing to my nursing school weary soul! The enthusiasm of the people praying the chants, Syriac and Aramaic in the different parts of the Liturgy and the welcome of fellow parishioners, the community, the living embodiment of Christ, wow!

It is also a group the loves to socialize and as we were leaving a new friend asked “so where are we going to lunch?” He also gave me a blessed medal and holy card! You know I was ecstatic! And we were joined by our pastor and his brother, who is visiting from Lebanon.

Our souls have found a warm and loving home in this beautiful and rich expression of the Catholic faith.

St. John Paul II on the flavor and unity with the Eastern churches

St Maruon

A Part of Me

I am so excited to share with you, my first chosen patron saint (Confirmation) St. Elizabeth Ann Seton!!!

Although I officially chose her at Confirmation she was a gift of the Holy Spirit my whole life! She founded the community that my grandmother taught with for 30 years, the Sisters of Charity, which was the community my mother tried before realizing that was not her calling.

I spent a great deal of my formative years with the Sisters of Charity in my house (my occasional baby-sitters) and at their motherhouse (visiting with my grandmother) at Seton Hill College, Greensburg, PA.

You will hear a number of Catholics relate horror stories of their youth spent with nuns, but not so with me! I loved (still do) these intelligent, funny, insightful and devout women of faith.

For the obvious reasons, I am glad my mother chose marriage as her vocation. However, it’s clear to me from St. Elizabeth Ann Seton’s life story and my faith journey that she and the dynamic women she inspires have had a very large impact on my life.

I am so grateful for her example. Today I wear her medal with an even bigger smile for being a part of me 🙂

Hidden Gifts

Merry Christmas Eve dear friends!  It has been a minute since I’ve posted anything on the blog.  Quite frankly, nursing school has sucked up every moment and available brain cell!  Now we’re on a few weeks reprieve and I have a moment to breath and reflect.  I can’t believe how far I’ve come in the last 5 months!  Through the beginning stages of “I can’t possibly do this, who could possibly do this???” Has changed to “This is the only thing I want to do for the rest of my life!”

Hidden gifts this Christmas 

My patients. How beautiful and life-altering it is for another person to allow you to care for them when they are suffering – The hidden gift was the gift of trust.

My classmates and the faculty.  I have made friends, I believe life-long friends, whom I cherish and respect beyond words.  Didn’t expect it! I thought I’d just be going to class and coming home, but no – The hidden gift was the gift of friendship.

 Life gained and lost.  We found out we were pregnant early in the semester, but sadly it was because we lost the baby at the same time.  I know that he is seeing the splendid light of Christ this Christmas with his sister.  I know our parents have been given another beautiful soul to watch over for us until we come Home.  I know, that although God asks much, He gives much in return … things the world does not always recognize – The hidden gift was the precious gift of hope.

I can fail or I can succeed, but I will not quit. Nursing school is hard. It’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.  I felt like I lived a week each day and each month was an eternity, but God kept me going.  He sent someone to my aid every time I thought I would fall and buoyed up my strength to continue – The hidden precious gift of perseverance.

I could go on and on, but you get the idea – always a gift given, never left to be abandoned or forgotten.  We are loved beyond measure!  So I’ll sign off!

We’ve all got things to do today to ready ourselves for our friends and family and most importantly to put the finishing touches on our hearts to welcome the Christ Child!

Much Love & Joy to you this Christmas and all the year through!

*May our little William Gregory Michael, and all the beautiful souls who have gone Home this year, through the mercy of God, rest in peace and light this day. Amen.

#hiddengifts  #Lovedbeyondmeasure

A little bit of spiritual field research

With our pastor on vacation it’s a Latin rite day at our Maronite spiritual haven.  So I whipped out my grandmother’s mantilla, and we took our show on the road to continue my research into the pre-Vatican II experience!  I have been to an   Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, low daily Dialogue Mass at St. Peter’s at the tomb of St. Pius X, but this was the first time for me in the U.S.  Thank goodness for Brian!  He led me instinctively through a ritual that I could not hear and struggled to follow.  He was only a kid, at the time, but he said it was like his brain opened a vault and accessed a file from 1961. 

I have a lot of thoughts to process, and have garnered some perspective.  I can see why My mother used to say ” We don’t need a Vatican III. We need a much better implementation of Vatican II and see where we are.”

And then we had Mexican food at Zama and some balloons 😉 

   

Joys of heaven

I don’t know why I didn’t think of this before and I realize I am thinking only in terms this world gets…BUT when we get to heaven we are able to celebrate our chosen patron saints feast day with them! Maybe we tell them why we chose them or get to thank them for their example, wisdom or guidance or…

Boom! So very cool!  On this feast of St. Thomas Moore, I think of My late husband Jeff, who choose to become Catholic at 31.  He said he wanted to have that thing that lit me up inside when I prayed…Anyone who met him could see it was already there.  The light of Christ shone so very brightly in his actions and through his words.  And like Thomas Moore he embraced God’s will for him even to death. 


What a party today must be Jeffrey Thomas!- St. Thomas Moore, June 22.   Looking back at the quotes, wow, so totally you.