I used to dislike Good Friday- so sad, so solemn, just get me to The Resurrection, how selfish I can be.
We are a Resurrection people and there is no Resurrection without death.
His Love for us displayed in his beaten body on that cross…
I have come to love Good Friday, so powerful, so utterly beautiful.
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.
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 🙂
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.
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.”
We enjoy a planned vacation to a far away destination, but sometimes meeting the spontaneous “Hey let’s get outta here!” even for just an afternoon to snap a few photos is so relaxing. Headed up to one of our favorite spots that’s uber dog friendly so the Budster gets away from the city too! Historic Dahlonega, GA is a short jaunt from the ATL, but a can feel a world away. Sometimes a moment’s grace is all you need.
Pray the rosary.
I learned to pray the rosary when I was two and my father was thought to be dying of a perforated colon. Despite what the doctor’s told us, he miraculously survived. Much later in his life, when my father was very close to death, his heart was still not aligned with God’s will and Dad was in spiritual torment. My mother and I prayed in his room while he slept and when he heard us praying he would tell us to stop that…Until he woke one time while we were praying the rosary and he didn’t ask us to stop. When we saw he was awake, we continued to pray, but much quieter. He said “No, keep praying.” My mother looked at me and started praying in a louder voice and I did as well. Shortly after we finished, my father confessed that he was afraid to die because he loved my mother so and would miss her. I saw an opening of his heart and spoke the words a dear friend had shared with me, seemingly out of the blue, about losing her husband years ago. “Death is not the end of love, it is loving everyone as intensely as you love your spouse here on earth.” My father sighed and gave his will up to God. He became peaceful about everything and died in peace a few weeks later. His soul could be at rest.
Not every end to my prayers has been as miraculous an answer…Jeff didn’t survive the second cancer. Our baby didn’t make it out of the womb alive…Or maybe they have. It’s just not the way I wanted the prayers to be answered. I prayed Jeff be free of the cancer. I prayed our baby would be happy and follow the Lord always.
What is undeniably true for me however; is that when I do pray the rosary, I am given a peace much like my father exhibited. When I pray the rosary, I see the life of Jesus. I reflect not only on how Mary felt, but how different people in the mysteries reacted to God’s message. When I pray the rosary I notice that it makes it easier for me to align my will with the Father’s will, through His Son and guided by the Holy Spirit, the spiritual spouse of Mary. I used to go to the rosary only in moments of trouble of severe need. It struck me that it was selfish if I only went when I needed something so desperately. It is a devotion of growing closer to Jesus through the eyes of His mother. Do I only want to be close to Him when I am in sever straights? No! I want to continue to know Him better and be closer to Him all the time.
I remember someone in prayer each rosary I offer. Sometimes it’s the souls in Purgatory, sometimes it’s for someone who has been presented to me with a specific need.
I pray the rosary while I walk our dog in the morning, besides other times. I think Buddy likes me feeling peaceful too.
When a change in plans altered the day. I texted my friends. “Have you been to Hapeville lately?” With the addition of Porsche, there’s a lot of delightful art, and delicious food happening in little historic Hapeville, GA!
See how many butterflies can you find on your visit!
And of course all that hunting makes you hungry!