Thursday, February 28, 2013

Papal March Madness


In the U.S. A. there  is single-elimination college basketball tournament performed each spring.  The colleges are matched in their appropriate division, and the winner advances to the next level.  It seems that everyone in the country participates in betting on the winner.  Papers are distributed with the teams' schedule and look similar to the one above.  Places of work, schools, restaurants--it seems that everyone participates.  It is no wonder that papal conjecture has caught March Madness.  Remember that betting on the pope is a sin.  So don't take this seriously.  

h/t NPR MORNING EDITION    http://www.facebook.com/nprmorningedition


Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Breakfast to Support Fr. Tom's Kids


This video is about Our Lady of Grace School in Kenya, where Fr. Tom's Kids are educated.  Father Tom’s Kids is a registered non-profit charity run by the Dominican Friars of Eastern Africa. We link sponsors and donors from all over the world with impoverished children in and around Kisumu, Kenya, in order to support them and provide them with an education.

The students come to us from many different backgrounds. Some are orphans, some come from polygamous families, some have parents who struggle to feed them. They are referred to us by family, by other religious orders in the area (such as the Franciscan Sisters of St. Anne), by former Father Tom’s Kids, or simply by Divine Providence. None of them can afford to go to school without our aid.
St. Mary's Church in New Haven, CT. is having a pancake breakfast to benefit Fr. Tom's Kids.  It will be held after the 8 and 10 o'clock Mass on Sunday, March 3, 2013.  The Lay Fraternities of Saint Dominic will be serving a full breakfast with eggs, sausage, pancakes, and fruit in the church hall.  Tickets are $ 10 and $ 20 for a family.  Donations are always welcome.  Come join and have an enjoyable breakfast and help the orphans that Fr. Tom and his successor have always loved and cherished.  This video is about Our Lady of Grace School in Kenya, where Fr. Tom's Kids are educated.

Adopt a Cardinal


The Cardinals need our prayer support as they discern and vote for our new Pope.  Let's each pick one to pray for.  Here's the web site:  http://adoptacardinal.org/  Click on this link.  Follow the directions, and you'll be assigned a cardinal.  I have Cardinal Wilfrid Fox Napier, OFM, the Cardinal Archbishop of Durban, South Africa.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Br. Tonto Questions Cappa's Lenten Sacrifice


This is a Brother Tonto and Cappa Cartoon.  It looks like Cappa has given up "mice" for Lent.  There is a story about St. Martin de Porres regarding this same problem.  When the priory was overrun with mice, the prior turned to Martin for help.  The prior knew that Martin loved all animals, including rodents, and when the prior told Martin to find a way to rid the priory of the vermin, or he, the prior was going to kill them all.  

It is said that Martin called all the mice together, and explained the problem.  Martin told the mice to stay out of the priory, and especially to stay out of sight of the prior.  In return, Martin would feed them daily--in the barn.  It worked like a miracle.




Lenten Conferences

  Here are some Lenten Talks.  If you can attend any of these, you'll be blessed.


Saturday, March 2nd:
·         Middletown, NY (Archdiocese of NY)
St. Joseph Church  2-5pm
Contact:  treat307@aol.com

Sunday, March 3rd:
·         Manhattan, NY (Archdiocese of NY)
Church of the Holy Innocents
               Contact:   mirouzem@hotmail.com

·         Casco, ME (Diocese of Portland, ME)
Resurrection Convent
               Contact:  sisterrosalie@fairpoint.net

·         Syracuse, NY (Diocese of Syracuse)
St. Patrick Church  2-3:30pm

Tuesday, March 5th:
·         Christ the Redeemer Church (Diocese of Rochester) 7-9pm
               Contact:  rkilpatrick@stny.rr.com

Monday, February 25, 2013

The Demise of the Rosary Angel

The time has come.  All good things must come to an end.  There's a time for everything (Ecclesiastes 3).  The Rosary Angel is gone.

The secret can come out now.  I am/was the Rosary Angel.  You see quite a while ago, on the table near the church exit were two boxes.  One was labeled "Broken Rosaries."  The other was labeled "Fixed Rosaries."  The first box had instructions directing people to put their name on their rosaries, so when they were fixed, they'd get them back.

For a little while, this worked well.  Then after time, I noticed that the box for "Broken Rosaries" wasn't being picked up.  So I took them and fixed them.  I never told anyone.  You're the first to know.

In fact, the person whose idea started the projec,t owned a bead store.  I don't know why she stopped fixing the rosaries, but she did.  I just continued and she got the credit.  I had heard people talking about whom the Rosary Angel was, and I'd get a kick out of their assumption, when the Rosary Angel was standing in their midst.

Over time, one of the boxes disappeared.  The "Broken Rosaries'" box must have been thrown away.  I suspect the Legion of Mary.  Their stuff had taken over the surface of the table.  I bet they just decided that the Rosary Angel didn't need two boxes.

So be it.  Then along comes the day when the inside of the church was painted.  It looks beautiful by the way.  The table where the rosary box sat, was moved out of the way. And now that the table is back, the box is gone.  It's nowhere in sight.

I have several suspects, but I can't accuse anyone without revealing my secret identity.  So I'm just interpreting this destructive act, as God's Will.  It's time for the Rosary Angel to retire.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Oneness

E. E. Cummings liked to experiment.  In this poem about loneliness, you can see that small loneliness of being "1" alone.  The poem is arranged to highlight this "oneness."  And this is a poem.  Not all poems rhyme, or have meter.  There's no figure of speech and cannot even be read aloud because of its fragmented words.  But it does have imagery.  The arrangement itself is a symbol of "oneness."

1 (a

1 (a

le
af
fa

ll

s)
one
1

iness


Clever, isn't it?  It makes you think to decipher the letters: a leaf falls.  It conveys the loneliness of being "one."  It also mimics the fall of a leaf, slowly descending down, down, and down.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Smoking Brassieres

Being a conscientious lector, I prepare my readings before hand.  Sunday, the Second Sunday of Lent, I am reading Genesis 15: 5-12, 17-18.  This is the story of God making a covenant with Abraham.  It describes the ritual that was usual when making a covenant.

Abraham prepared the sacrifices just as required.  Then:

When the sun had set and it was dark, there appeared a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch, which passed between those pieces.

The Lector preparation that I used gives an interesting note on the latest N.A.B. Translation.  It tells us that in the Catholic Churches in the U.S.A. the intended word for smoking fire pot had to be substituted because it sounded like "smoking brassieres."  The word in question was "a smoking brazier."  Americans mispronounced brazier, as women's unmentionables.  And that's the only thing the listeners concentrated on--brassieres; not the rest of the scripture passage.

I can't imagine why.




Distinguishing a Christian

Have you noticed a gradual shift in the direction of the gospels during Lent?  From Ash Wednesday on, the gospel readings were, well, penitential.  Today, the Saturday of the first week of Lent, the Gospel according to Matthew tells us to ...love your neighbor and your enemy. 

I think Christianity is the only religion that teaches love of enemy.  Father George Szal tells the story of the painter in a church in China.  People kept telling the painter that he mistranslated.  Above the door was Love Your Enemies.  That couldn't be correct!

Not only is Jesus telling us to love our enemies, He's telling us to be perfect, just as our heavenly Father is perfect.

You would think that it would be easy to love.  We were created in love.  We were made to love.  We love to love.

Concupiscence destroyed our perfect love.  But we are free creatures.  We are free to choose to love.  We can, and should, choose to love.  Are we not children of our heavenly Father, for he makes His sun rise on the bad and the good, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust?  For sure, it is this love that distinguishes us as Christians.  This is not a mistranslation, a mistake.  It is who we are.  We are the children of God, striving to be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Chair of St. Peter Sede Vacante




Today is the Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter.  It suddenly struck me that this chair, next week will be Sede Vacante!  Since Pope Benedict XVI has resigned, effective Feb. 28, 2013, next Friday, March 1, we will have no Pope.  It will seem uncanny not to have a Pope.  I bet Fr. Frank will forget, and still put his name in the Eucharistic Prayer, where we pray for the Pope.  We will have to pray for the choosing of a new pope by the conclave of cardinals. 

During the period of sede vacante, the administration of the church is managed by a regency (chosen by the College of Cardinals).

The above image is the most coveted chair in my house.  My granddaughter and my cat vie for it.  I know it’s not the chair of St. Peter, but it might just as well be, for Lucy and Dallas.  Many schemes have been plotted over its occupancy.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Authentic Fasting

I have a guest blogger, today.  My friend, Marina, is an associate professor of philosophy at Boston College.  She's also a favorite with my "cloistered brothers."  In this post she is looking at "fasting."  She's talking about the real thing:

"This, rather, is the fasting that I wish: releasing those bound unjustly,
untying the thongs of the yoke;
Setting free the oppressed,
breaking every yoke;
Sharing your bread with the hungry,
sheltering the oppressed and the homeless;
Clothing the naked when you see them,
and not turning your back on your own.
Then your light shall break forth like the dawn,
and your wound shall quickly be healed."(Isaiah 58:6-9a)

Isaiah speaks about the difference between superficial fasting and authentic fasting. God, he says, does not want fasting where people "afflict themselves" but rather a fasting that sets others free in some way. Isaiah's wisdom is that even fasting can be self-centered. In this reading, the people are fasting in order to receive something from God. But genuine fasting, Isaiah suggests, is for others' sakes. 

Many years, the Dominicans fast at Lent. But to fast for the sake of others in a prison, where one already has limited meals (and very limited money) is challenging. One year the guys fasted by giving up the coffee they drank at Sunday and Wednesday community meetings. The money used to purchase the coffee was donated to others. The sacrifice involved in not drinking coffee is much more substantial in that context than in ours, as coffee is one of the few "extras" allowed. It was also a community sacrifice, since some prisoners have no money at all—not even enough for a bottle of shampoo—if they have been completely abandoned by family outside. The funds for coffee is pooled community money, and so is the donation. That year, their action reminded me of the example of the poor widow who puts in her two small coins, and Jesus notices her faith. 

If we ignore the poor in Lent, we are not really "doing" Lent. Augustine puts it directly:

"First and foremost, clearly, please remember the poor, so that what you withhold from yourselves by living more sparingly, you may deposit in the treasury of heaven. Let the hungry Christ receive what the fasting Christian receives less of. Let the self-denial of one who undertakes it willingly become the support of the one who has nothing. Let the voluntary want of the person who has plenty become the needed plenty of the person in want." (Sermon 210)

Isaiah's words are about being "hands-on": not only cutting a check to help others, but being present to those who are "poor" in some way. Sharing bread, breaking bread with another; clothing those in need whom we see.

Isaiah writes, "then your wound shall quickly be healed." How? Because the deepest wounds we have are those that separate us from one another:  not missing out on a new shirt, not doing without a cup of Starbucks, not even a little genuine hunger. One of the greatest wounds in our society is the division between the rich and the poor. Lent is an opportunity to overcome that division through genuine fasting that puts us back in solidarity with one another.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Crossing Over the Bridge




In her Dialogue, St. Catherine says that each of us chooses to live our lives by walking either on the Bridge, which is Christ, or on the river, which is the way without God, and in which one drowns. Both ways are full of fatigue, she says, but in choosing the Bridge, one experiences delight, and “every bitterness becomes sweet, and every burden light.”

She writes, speaking for God the Father,
For those who cross by the Bridge, being still in the darkness of the body, find light, and, being mortal, find immortal life, tasting, through love, the light of Eternal Truth which promises refreshment to him who wearies himself for Me…. He, therefore, is a fool indeed, who despises so great a good, and chooses rather to receive in this life, the earnest money of Hell, walking by the lower road with great toil, and without any refreshment or advantage.

In discussing this with my "cloistered brothers," a humorous but true image was conveyed.  We haven't crossed the bridge.  We sinners have to pay a toll to get over the bridge.

St. Catherine isn't the only one to use metaphors.  The toll is penance.  Another thought could be that the toll is grace.  And if you combine the two, then the toll is the grace to pay the penance.

Day 9 Novena to find Work


Take heart.  There's a better world in store for you.  It is only the malice of God's enemies that is preventing you from having a worthwhile vocation.  Believe that God holds you secure in His hands; He loves you; He wants what's best for you.  Never lose hope.

                                         Day Nine
Work is Prayer
The Novena is finished.  You've done all that is humanly possible.  There is nothing remaining except to trust in the Lord.  He will answer your prayers, maybe not in the manner, nor the time, that you wish.  He has said it, and He will do it.

And the confidence that we have towards Him is this, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.  And we know that he hears us whatever we ask; we know that the requests we make of Him are granted.  (1John 5: 14)

He always answers. He will give you what you need, which may not necessarily be what you want.  It may be better.  Have faith.  And always have hope.   Thank you, Jesus.


Prayer
Through the intercession of St. Joseph I ask for work that will bring me close to You, My Lord.  I pray that the work be enough to provide for those who depend on me.  I only ask to serve You, Lord, and to feel secure in Your Love.  

Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

And don't worry.  The Lord is near.  Have no anxiety, but in every prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your petitions be made known to God.  And may the peace of God which surpasses all understanding guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
(Philippians, 4: 4-7)                                              Amen

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

This is What a Hero Looks Like

Father Francis Sampson was a Chaplain in three wars: World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam.  There are many stories about his adventures.  One such story was the inspiration for the movie, Private Ryan.

My favorite story is the one about the first time he was ever captured by the enemy.  This is in WWII and the Germans just grabbed him and threw him against the wall in front of a firing squad.  He was so scared that instead of making a perfect Act of Contrition he said, instead:

Bless us our Lord,
and these thy gifts,
which we are about
                                    to eat.

Day 8 Novena to Find Work


Take heart.  There's a better world in store for you.  It is only the malice of God's enemies that is preventing you from having a worthwhile vocation.  Believe that God holds you secure in His hands; He loves you; He wants what's best for you.  Never lose hope.

                                                                         Day Eight

Work is prayer.
Tweeking techniques, are what we're working on, today.  I haven't mentioned resumes because that's the first thing people think of, and then do.  Their are web sites and employee counselors in abundance, that can help with that.  Today, I'd like you to organize your job search.  Make lists: Ideal Jobs, Convenient Jobs (close to home), Jobs you'll settle for.  Now under those headings, put the jobs you're applying for.  Leave room to describe what happened there, i.e., interview, rejection, nothing.  

Maybe you'll notice a pattern.  Maybe you can concentrate on an area.  How are you doing on the internet networking, e.i., linkedin, JibberJoober, etc..

Today is a day of getting a handle of all these feelers you've thrown out.  Stay in control.  Stay focused. Persevere.  Hope.


Prayer
Through the intercession of St. Joseph I ask for work that will bring me close to You, My Lord.  I pray that the work be enough to provide for those who depend on me.  I only ask to serve You, Lord, and to feel secure in Your Love.  

Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Day 7 Novena for Work


Take heart.  There's a better world in store for you.  It is only the malice of God's enemies that is preventing you from having a worthwhile vocation.  Believe that God holds you secure in His hands; He loves you; He wants what's best for you.  Never lose hope.

                                         Day Seven



Work is prayer
While you are networking, going to head hunters, and trying to do all that these people are telling you do, I want you to look in the mirror.  Yes, you are beautiful.  Of course, you are made in the image of God.  But Human Resource personnel and department heads aren't looking for saints.  You've got to update your "look."  Today watch the news and look at the men and women who are delivering the news.  You need to look like them.  You see, the reason they look like they do is because they've been groomed to appeal to the masses.  And that's exactly what you need to do to get a job.  If you're a man who wears a pony tail and an unkempt beard, then cut them off.  If you really can't part with your beard, then keep it very, very close to the skin.  Keep it very, very, neat.  Once you have the job, perhaps you can grow your hair back long, but not when your're seeking employment. 
  
Ladies need to color their hair if there's any grey in it.  Style it like a female news anchor.  Also wear makeup--like the news anchor.  When you're interviewing in a company, note what the women look like as you walk by.  Do they look like Las Vegas show girls?  Do they look like religious sisters out of habit?  Do they look like they're ready to muck out the horse stalls?  If you want to work at this particular company, then on your next interview with them, dress like one of them.

It wouldn't hurt, men and women, to join Toastmaster's International.  You'll probably say that you don't want to be a public speaker.  You hate speaking in public.  Well, you're not going there to learn to speak in public.  You're going there to learn how to present yourself.  You're going to learn how to be the best you can be.  Do you know that Toastsmaster's is very "big," in prisons?  Do you think it's because prisoners want to become public speakers?  Silly idea.  They are going to learn how to present themselves better when they go up for parole.  They want to be the best they can be.  

Keep networking, going on interviews, and praying.   

Prayer
Through the intercession of St. Joseph I ask for work that will bring me close to You, My Lord.  I pray that the work be enough to provide for those who depend on me.  I only ask to serve You, Lord, and to feel secure in Your Love.  

Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Prayer for New Pope


"Prayer for the Church in Anticipation of the Vacancy of the See of St. Peter" (courtesy of the Knights of Columbus)

O Lord Jesus Christ, Supreme Pastor of Your Church,
we thank you for the ministry of Pope Benedict XVI
and the selfless care with which he has led us
as Successor of Peter, and Your Vicar on earth.

Good Shepherd, who founded Your Church
on the rock of Peter's faith
and have never left Your flock untended,
look with love upon us now,
and sustain Your Church in faith, hope, and charity.

 Grant, Lord Jesus,
in Your boundless love for us,
a new Pope for Your Church
who will please You by his holiness
and lead us faithfully to You,
who are the same yesterday, today, and forever. Amen.

Hilare Belloc's Catholicism

Hilaire Belloc was an interesting person.  He had a way with words.  At one time, he was a candidate for political office.  His Catholicism was viewed as a detriment.  Religious prejudice is difficult to overcome.  

One time, at a speech, he appeared on the rostrum with a rosary held high in his hand.  He declared: "I am a Catholic.  As far as possible I go to Mass, every day.  As far a possible I kneel down and pray with these rosary beads, every day.  If you reject me on account of my religion, I shall thank God that he has spared me the indignity of being your representative."

He was elected.

Addendum to Day 6

Add this resource to this morning's post on "head hunters."  You do the work yourself, so you're your own head hunter.  If you're in Boston, then physically go and spend some time.  Otherwise, do what you can "on-line."

Kirstein is on Facebook and just about every day there is a helpful post.  I even saw one about a free course/training at MIT.  There are many and different business resources, especially directories of public and private companies.  Hopefully it will help you focus on more strategic job searches.  This may just be a God send.


Day 6 Novena to find Work


Take heart.  There's a better world in store for you.  It is only the malice of God's enemies that is preventing you from having a worthwhile vocation.  Believe that God holds you secure in His hands; He loves you; He wants what's best for you.  Never lose hope.

                                         Day Six

Work is prayer
We're doing all we can.  Our network is doing all it can.  Maybe it's time to call in a "head hunter."  A head hunter is a recruiter.  Companies go to them to find workers.  You don't have to pay them.  However, there are some that the job seeker has to pay.

There's something called a Riley's Guide to help you find a recruiter.  The Riley Guide has a list of free directories of recruiting firms you can use to locate a recruiter to work with.  

Yesterday, we talked about networking.  We specifically mentioned Linkedin.  Some head hunters search network sites like Linkedin for candidates.  That's why networking is so important.  How can I head hunter find you if you haven't put yourself out there?

At the end of the day, say a prayer to St. Anthony to find you a job.  And it wouldn't hurt to pray to St. Jude, patron of desperate cases.  Of course, close with the prayer, below.

Prayer
Through the intercession of St. Joseph I ask for work that will bring me close to You, My Lord.  I pray that the work be enough to provide for those who depend on me.  I only ask to serve You, Lord, and to feel secure in Your Love.  

Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Day 5 Novena to Find Work

Take heart.  There's a better world in store for you.  It is only the malice of God's enemies that is preventing you from having a worthwhile vocation.  Believe that God holds you secure in His hands; He loves you; He wants what's best for you.  Never lose hope.


                                         Day Five
Work is Prayer
Hope you're still smiling, because today you'll be using it.  We're networking, today.  Most people are embarrassed that they don't have a job.  Don't be.  The more people that know, the better.  People like to help.  I know men have difficulty asking for help, but you'll just have to push yourself.  


Networking is a social activity.  You need to go down to your local Office of Employment Security and speak to somebody.  This is where lucky people pick up their unemployment check.  But it's also a place to find a job.  Talk to a counselor there.  Read the bulletin boards.  Sometimes "job fairs" are listed.  Newspaper classifies will have job events, sometimes.  And if you've spread the word that you're looking for work, people will refer you to job fairs, if not even better--jobs.


Besides telling friends that you're looking for work, tell relatives, former classmates, former work mates.  Did you apply to your former employer's competitors?  Go to job agencies.


Join Linkedin, beyond.com, monster, etc..  On my own margin, on the bottom right, click jooble.com.  Maybe your networking will give you more places.


Advertise in your parish bulletin that you're forming a job search support group.  There people get together to share ideas.  They tweet each other with suggestions, how an interview went, and other ideas.  And since this is a parish organisation, pray for each other.


Prayer
Through the intercession of St. Joseph I ask for work that will bring me close to You, My Lord.  I pray that the work be enough to provide for those who depend on me.  I only ask to serve You, Lord, and to feel secure in Your Love.  
Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Day 4 Novena to Find Work


Take heart.  There's a better world in store for you.  It is only the malice of God's enemies that is preventing you from having a worthwhile vocation.  Believe that God holds you secure in His hands; He loves you; He wants what's best for you.  Never lose hope.

                                         Day Four

Work is Prayer
Looking for work is a humbling experience.  Having to ask for help is humbling, and depending on the circumstances, it can even be demeaning.  Today, we are going to stop thinking about ourselves by taking the focus off ourselves and try to help others.  Let's go to a nearby nursing home.  Call up first and tell the receptionist that you have some free time, and you'd like to visit with someone who needs a visit.  Make the arrangements and do it.

Personally, I find this very difficult to do.  I don't know why.  But I did push myself to do it.  Once there, everything went amazingly smooth.  I was introduced to an elderly gentleman who was sitting in the recreation room with the game of Jenga, in front of him.  He asked me if I'd like to play Jenga.  "Sure," I said. That was it.  We played and carried on a conversation getting to know each other.

You know what happened?  During that time, I didn't think of my sorry situation, once.  I left the visit with a smile on my face.

I made a friend.  I spent some time interacting with a lonely human being.  I felt happy and I think he did, too.

If you already have someone in a nursing home, then go visit them.  Likewise, someone in a hospital.

On the way out the door, stop and get an employment application.  If you take it home, fill it out and mail it back in or better yet, on your next visit, take it in.

Thank God for the blessings you received from this visit.  And check off the beatitude "Visit the sick."

Prayer
Through the intercession of St. Joseph I ask for work that will bring me close to You, My Lord.  I pray that the work be enough to provide for those who depend on me.  I only ask to serve You, Lord, and to feel secure in Your Love.  

Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

The image used is shard under a creative commons license.  The original image is by Shalawesome at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/shalawesome/1322558630/

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Bro. Tonto & Cappa's Valentines


Day 3 Novena to find Work


Take heart.  There's a better world in store for you.  It is only the malice of God's enemies that is preventing you from having a worthwhile vocation.  Believe that God holds you secure in His hands; He loves you; He wants what's best for you.  Never lose hope.

Day Three

Work is Prayer
Today we will continue the soul searching.  Spend some time in front of the tabernacle, today, and bring some paper and something to write with.  Yesterday, you realized what you were interested in.  Today I want you to write down what's important to you.  Family, job satisfaction, church, private time, travel/no traveling, prestige, uniform/no uniform, money, and anything else you deem important to yourself.  

    Number them in order of importance to you.

Think of yesterday's exercise and look at today's list.  Can the be integrated?  I'm thinking of yesterday's interest in airplanes and today's list, putting no travel up pretty high.  Or, yesterday's interest in politics, and today's "family", is it possible to combine those two--at this time of your life?

Do you see what I'm getting at?  You really need to put today's list of what's important above yesterday's dream job.  Otherwise, your dream job will eventually tear you down, slowly.  It's what you want, versus what you need. 
I offer you some consolation.  If you have discerned that your dream job is out of the question, then turn it into a hobby.  Somehow stay connected with it.  Someday, today's needs will have changed, and then you can pursue your dream.
  
Changing your mind is not only a woman's prerogative; it's a human one.  Your dream jobs, like your needs, change.
  
I'm telling you to meet your needs, first.  Find a job that can meet what you and your family need.  Many do find both their dream job and also fulfill their needs.  God bless them.  Many have to do what needs to be done.  May God bless them more, because they are doing what Jesus taught them to do--sacrifice.  Take heart, however, situations change.  That's life.

Just because you take a job that does not meet your needs, doesn't mean you're stuck there forever.  Keep searching.  You do what you have to do, and keep looking.  Never lose hope.

                                         
Prayer
Through the intercession of St. Joseph I ask for work that will bring me close to You, My Lord.  I pray that the work be enough to provide for those who depend on me.  I only ask to serve You, Lord, and to feel secure in Your Love.  

Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Day 2 Novena to find Work

 This novena isn't only for the unemployed.  It's also for the underemployed, and those unhappy in their present employment.

Take heart.  There's a better world in store for you.  It is only the malice of God's enemies that is preventing you from having a worthwhile vocation.  Believe that God holds you secure in His hands; He loves you; He wants what's best for you.  Never lose hope.

                                                  Day Two

Work is Prayer
Carrying that thought further, looking for work can be prayer.  Today is going to be soul searching.  Sometime today, go to the library.  Go to the magazine section.  Peruse ten magazines by being attracted by their covers.  Flip through the pages.  Look at the table of contents.  Pick ten and go sit down in the reading room.  Spread the ten magazines in front of you.  Take note of their subject matter.  Do they all have the same theme?  Does the majority?  Guess what?  This is the type of work you should be involved in.   Certain things attracted you to these magazines.  This is what interests you, i,.e., outdoors, children, clothes, finance, literary works, religion, etc.  You need to find work in this area.
      Throw up an ejaculatory prayer for this revelation.  "Thank you Lord, for the grace of knowing myself."  
       Enough for today.  On your way home from the library, stop in your church, and spend some time in front of the tabernacle, dreaming of your dream job.

Prayer
Through the intercession of St. Joseph I ask for work that will bring me close to You, My Lord.  I pray that the work be enough to provide for those who depend on me.  I only ask to serve You, Lord, and to feel secure in Your Love.  

Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Novena to St. Joseph to Find Work

My most often "hit" blog posts, are those about employment.  And today, on my friend Chris' Face Book page, I noticed a Novena to find work. Hence, I was inspired to put together my own novena.  This novena isn't only for the unemployed.  It's also for the underemployed, and those unhappy in their present employment.

Take heart.  There's a better world in store for you.  It is only the malice of God's enemies that is preventing you from having a worthwhile vocation.  Believe that God holds you secure in His hands; He loves you; He wants what's best for you.  Never lose hope.

                                         Day One

Through the intercession of St. Joseph I ask for work that will bring me close to You, My Lord.  I pray that the work be enough to provide for those who depend on me.  I only ask to serve You, Lord, and to feel secure in Your Love.  

Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

The Benefit of Sacrifice


Lent is a time of Sacrifice.  I've decided to have everyone in my family sacrifice by eating stuff they would  never touch, even with a ten foot pole.  I'll only make them do this once a week.  Fridays during Lent we'll try something different, at meal time.

This is Fr. Leo, host and founder of the TV show, "Grace Before Meals."  He's cooking with Joan Rosenhauer of Catholic Relief Services in the USA.  They are going to cook Bean Cakes from Burkina Faso.

Here's the benefit.  The family will get a geography lesson with the discussion on Burkina Faso culture.   This will be good family time.

And here's the genius part of my plan: if anyone in my family isn't willing to try the new dish, they have to put a dollar in the Catholic Relief Services Rice Bowl.

Good idea.  Good food.  It's a Win/Win plan.

Monday, February 11, 2013

What Are You Giving Up for Lent?

Since the purpose of "Giving Up" for Lent is to show to yourself, that you have a dependence on something, other than God.  Or look at it as Lent is to prove to yourself that you aren't hooked on anything, other than God.

For many years now, I've given up sugar and cream, in my coffee.  This is very hard.  The first year, a tablespoon of black coffee a day, was all I could manage.  But I persevered and had that tablespoon, every day.  Now I drink a full mug, black.  Since I can drink it black, and since I've tasted horrible tasting coffee, here and there, I kind of pride myself on the fact, that I can drink anything.  It's not my preference, to have black coffee, however.  During Lent, I prove to myself, and God, that I can do it for Him.

This year, I've decided to make myself go to bed at ten.  This is hard.  I usually go to bed between 11-12.  And since I know I'll be awake and tossing and turning, you know what I'm going to do?  I'm going to pray.  I think this is perfect.  Proving that I can go to bed at ten, and add prayer.  Why waste time tossing and turning when I can get some good prayer time in.

What are you giving up for Lent?

Rules for Life

 This is making the rounds.  Anything to add?  My favorite is # 1.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Canute Anecdote

Coin with Canute image
Canute (Cnut) (?994-1035) was king of Denmark, Norway, England, and Sweden.  It has been said that he was the most effective king in Anglo Saxon history, in spite of not being Anglo Saxon.

I like this story about him.  He was truly a humble man.  By that I mean that he was a gifted leader and acknowledged his gifts.  In addition, he also acknowledged his shortcomings.  The story relates how Canute rebuked the flattery of his retainers.  Tiring of their extravagant praises of his greatness, he brought everybody down to the seashore, with his throne chair.  He ordered his chair to be set at the edge of the water, as the waves came in.  Canute then commanded the waves to not come in and wet him.  The incoming tide did not obey.  When Canute was thoroughly soaked, he took off his king's                  crown and never wore it again.  Instead, he hung it upon a statue of the crucified Christ.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

$ 500 or a Year in Prison



Due to the blizzard, Feb. 8, Governor Deval Patrick declared a state of emergency and closed all the streets at 4:00 PM and posted a fine of $ 500, or a year in prison, for violating the ban.  Hence, I’m stuck at home.  Fortunately, the electricity has not gone out and the television and computer are still operating.

In checking my email and Facebook, some friends were discussing the penalty for violating the emergency ban.  Joking, it was commented that perhaps being in prison wouldn't be so bad; they’d get some writing accomplished. 

 Mmmm, what would my “cloistered brothers” think about that.  Writing?  Pencils and pens aren't that readily available in prison.  Were they thinking of using a computer—in prison?  You would be lucky to be able to think.  There’s a constant din of noise; it’s not a hotel with privacy doors.  Would you like to use the toilet in your cell? Actually, that’s the only available seat.   Do you want a desk lamp?  Get real!  The lighting depends on where your cell is.  The overhead lighting in the halls and corridors are it.  Deal with it.

Yet, St. Paul managed to do quite a bit of writing, in prison.  And his writing was filled with hope and joy.  I’m sure there were deprivations, but Paul never mentions them.  His sufferings added depth to his words.  His chains were part of his apostleship. 

Others have done likewise.  Remember the religious sisters jailed for demonstrating against the US Army School of the Americas.  Their arrest, their diaries, and the publicity surrounding their imprisonment allowed their message to get out further than they thought it ever would.

Is the idea of getting their writing more publicity, enticement enough to want to risk prison?  Not, for violation of an emergency ban.  There’s no honor in that.  Better to book a weekend at an inn.  Do your writing in quiet with accommodating surroundings.  St. Paul says:

Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.  May no temptations take hold of you but such as man is equal to.  God is faithful and will not permit you to be tempted beyond your strength, but with the temptation will also give you a way out that you may be able to bear it.  (1Cor. 10:12-13)

Friday, February 8, 2013

150 Years a Priest



The Apostle of Prisons, Pere Marie Jean-Joseph Lataste, O.P. was ordained a priest 150 years ago, on February 8, 1863.  Here are some of his impressions on that very day.  These are compiled by Renata Commazind from the Resurrection Community in Casco, Maine.

Ordination to the Priesthood of Fr. Lataste – February 8, 1863  The Apostle of Prisons

Approaching his Ordination, Fr. Lataste still felt the fear before the sanctity which such a mission demands. But he is not crushed anymore by that call, as when he was young.; he trusts now in God’s mercy:
He writes;” Oh! How the power of the Priest is high, marvelous, redoubtable! Also, when one often sees men at the hight of their position of their work in the world, never though can a priest, as virtuous and saintly he might be, ever be worthy of his mission, rigorously speaking; he will always be less; what he will be, he will be, not by his merits but only by the great mercy of God towards him.”  
                                                                                                  Pg. 100 of “Ces femmes qui etaaient mes soeurs”      
                                                                                                              Book by Fr. Jean Marie Gueullette O.P.             

February 8, 1863- Marseille - Br. Jean Joseph Lataste is ordained to the Priesthood by Msg. Petagna, representing the Bsp. of Marseille. In the Oratory of the Third Order Sisters of St. Dominic.
February 10.- Fr. Jean Joseph celebrates Mass for the first time. It is the Commemoration of the suffering of Our Lord.
Febr. 11, - Feast of the Engagement of Mary and Joseph. Fr. Lataste celebrates the second time ,Holy mass at the Grotto of St. Mary Magdaleine at La St. Baume.
February 23, 1863 he writes to Mrs. Piron ( a good friend )  “ Yes, now I am a priest, a servant of God, priest for all eternity. I leave it to you and your heart and piety to guess what feelings were then in my soul and still are every day. Feelings of joy, gratefulness, love, of total giving of myself to the will of God, who is so good, so merciful, so wonderful toward his children, even to the weakest and most unworthy. The 8th and 10th of Feb., are two days, which I will never forget. My father and my oldest brother Theophil and the youngest of the three, my brother Honore, were with me. The always pious and good Honore and the two others were first uneasy, but then deeply touched. The light has not yet touched their souls, but everything moved them: the dignity of the celebration, the impression which a first Mass gives, especially in the presence of 80 Monks, a day of a solemn exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, the fraternal welcome, which they received, the intimate joy and the true fatherly affection which one receives in a Cloister.”            By Robert and Claude Evers in “Apostle of Prisons”