Friday, November 30, 2012

Really Look at that Gift Horse

The other day I was given a little spiritual direction, that I am still bummed about.  My temperament is such that I'm not bothered by much.  It just rolls off me.  Why?  I dunno.

Maybe I'm just lazy.

Maybe I'm selfish and not worried about anything that doesn't affect me.

Maybe I'm such a people pleaser that I don't want anyone mad at me.


Hey, maybe I just trust God to handle everything.

I never thought much about why I'm like this, except to consider it a blessing.  I always considered it a gift.  I thought it was a gift from God.

Whenever I read or hear about "forgiveness," I feel my eyes glaze over.  I have no one to forgive.  No one has ever done anything to me that I've taken offense to.  I may think that something someone said was stupid, but I wasn't hurt.  I have ranted and raved, but I can't remember why, of for what reason. Isn't this a grace?

It turns out that I'm fooling myself.  It would be a wonderful grace to hate someone, and then forgive them, and love them.  Forgiving is something I've never been given the grace to do because my personality is such that I'm not offended so easily.

                 No offense = Nothing to Forgive       Offended+Forgiveness= Blessings

I just thought of something.
Before I was a little self-righteous: I love everybody; never met a person I didn't like.  OK, maybe I was a little too proud of what was just my temperament.

But!  Now I forgive myself.  ;-D

Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Perfect Christmas Tree

All my life, my Christmas tree has been real.  By real I mean, not artificial. Hubby never had a real tree until he married me.  He had always wanted one, but his family thought they were too much of a bother.

However, once hubby saw, felt, and smelled, a real Christmas tree, he never wanted an artificial one.  Until now.  We decided that since all our children have left the nest, we didn't have to bother with pine needles, watering the tree so it doesn't dry out, getting one too tall, too short, too fat--a having to cut off branches, and what to do with the tree after Christmas.  They are a bother!

One year we bought one that wouldn't stand up straight.  We just couldn't get it to be straight and tall.  We ended up tying string to the four corners of the ceiling to its top, to keep it centered straight and tall.  It was ugly!  It looked like a giant spider web--even when draped with garland and lights!
 That tree was a disaster.

Another year, the tree smelled of cat's urine.                          Enough said about that!

You see we buy the tree around Thanksgiving, before they're all picked over, and we're stuck with everyone's rejects.  But we don't bring it inside the house--it would dry out too fast.  So we keep it outside.  Well, the little animals in the neighborhood must have thought it was a fire hydrant!!!!

That tree was another disaster.  Although, when we told Jim, who we always buy our trees from, he said that we must have bought a ????? tree, which does have a pungent smell.  Whatever.  :-(    Ugh!

And for many a year, we hid the tree behind the furniture.  When we had toddlers and didn't want them  knocking down ornaments, or the tree itself, we pushed the sofa and easy chairs in front of the tree to block it off.

Besides, every year the tree has a bad side.  Well, that's a given; no tree is perfect.  So you hide the bad side away from everyone's view.

So you see the appeal of an artificial tree?  Or, so we thought.  Look at the tree.  I know you can't see it very well.  I'll describe it.  It's too skinny.  You can see right through to its trunk.  And the trunk is obviously a pole--how Christmassy is that?  Of course it has no smell.  I can't put tinsel or angel hair on it, because it wouldn't come off (bummer).

It just looks....well...skimpy.

What do you think?

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

First Snow

It's been snowing all day.  It's the first snow.  The ground is still warm, so the snow barely carpets the grass.  Still.  It's an opportunity to reflect what's ahead.         

    Winter Wishes

I want my snowman to stay
            like a statue
     standing forever still.

I want my grandchildren to clap
            woolen mittens
     and laugh happy songs.

I want the sun to shine gently
          no scorching rays
        melting children’s fun.

Different Desires

I desire mercy, not sacrifice.*
I desire flowers, not a new iron.
I desire chocolates, not a vacuum cleaner.
I desire kisses and hugs, not pots and pans.

I desire mercy, not sacrifice.*
I desire you, not your money.
I desire my reflection in your eyes.
I desire your words meant for me.
I desire your arms around me.
I desire our bodies as one.
I desire our souls as one.
I desire our prayer as one.
I desire you.

I desire mercy, not sacrifice.*

*Hosea 6:6

Monday, November 26, 2012

Close Call

On my way to Mass, this morning, I saw an accident almost happen.  As I was leaving my neighborhood, the car in front entered an intersection.  Another car, on the main street had to come to a screeching halt and almost hit that car.  Cars on the main street have the right of way, so the car in front of me was in the wrong.  I think I remember him coming to a stop, and then proceeding to go through the intersection.  But sometimes stopping and turning your head, right and left, doesn't mean that your looking, right and left.  And maybe he did look, but not see.  I've done that myself.

Back to my story: the car that screeched to a halt, then did a "Ueee" (turned around in a U-turn) and sped off after that other car.  My first thought was road rage.  My cell phone is also a camera.  So if I came across these two cars by the side of the road, and the two drivers were fighting, I could take pictures.  I was planning to take a picture of the license plate of the car that sped after the offending car, but he was going way too fast for me.  Soon there were five cars between us.  Then I couldn't tell which car it was.  I finally said the "heck" with it.

I prayed for the people involved, at Mass.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Pilate Didn't Get It

John 19: 34-37  When Pilate asked Jesus, "Art thou the king of the Jews?", He didn't have a lawyer.  If He did, He would have remained silent and let his legal counsel do His talking for Him.  After all, He didn't do a very good job of defending Himself.  In fact, He incriminates Himself.  He admits to being a king.

He actually is King of all mankind.  But I doubt a representative of Caesar would readily accept that.  In fact, Jesus would have been in even worse trouble.  But Jesus is our King, then, now, and forever.  Pilate couldn't grasp that concept.  He was too narrow minded, to influenced by his culture, and too preoccupied with his own concerns.  (Doesn't that sound just like people, today?)

People who don't accept Jesus as Lord are just like Pilate.  You might as well try to explain rock and roll to an alien.  They won't "get it."  

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Jesus' Hardest Teaching

Most people assume that John 6:57-58, is Jesus' hardest teaching.  That's not true for me.  There was a time when I didn't believe that the Eucharist was really Jesus' true presence, but when I thought about it, I realized that Jesus wouldn't lie.  And the thought of seeing Jesus in heaven, and telling Him that I thought He was kidding, or being poetical, or worse--just plain lying, made me gulp down any unbelief.  Now I need His Food and Drink daily.  It's my life blood.  But that's a different story.

What I find hard to see, is God in my fellow man.  Genesis 2: 27.  I find that to be the hardest of Jesus' teachings.  I know I'm supposed to see something of God's glory in each person.  But some poor souls don't even offer a glimpse of God's image.  Sometimes they deliberately choose not to.  What do I do in that case?  Pray for them.

Pray for me.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Mama Mia

Turn your sound up high.  You'll hear Pope Benedict say, "Mama Mia."  LOL

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happiness is a Short Memory

Last night I was at a family gathering with a lot of people I have never met before, or haven't seen in years.  One of the men there approached me and whispered in my ear, "I want to apologize for my behavior at your prom."  Outside of, "huh?", I didn't know what to say.

He continued to explain that he didn't want to go to a prom.  He wasn't the type.  His parents made him go.  He was young, immature, and stupid.  That was why he behaved like he did.


What did he do?  ????????????  

I don't know, but I guess it's a good thing that I don't remember.  Someone once said that happiness is health, and a short memory.

I do remember him, but that's about it.  Maybe I repressed the memory? he said, "he was young, immature, and stupid."

So was I.  

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Presentation of Mary

This day is special to me because I went to Presentation of Mary Academy for high school.  Today is the Feast of the Presentation of Mary. For four years of high school the title of this feast day was before my eyes: on my clothes, note books, classrooms, and finally my diploma.   This feast commemorates the time when Mary was presented to the temple and consecrated to God.  So it was only natural that Mary is a close friend of mine.  And of course, it's very natural that I pass this association on to my granddaughter, aka Rosary Girl.  Since she's only two, her Hail Mary's aren't the prayer that we would recognize.  But it's still prayer.  This is Rosary Girl's prayer.

Hail Mary!
Holy Mother!  Listen!
She claps her hands together.

Hail Mary!
You stay.  No cry!  Stop!
Two year old vocabulary.

Hail Mary!
No.  Sorry.  Thank you.
What else, my child?

Hail Mary!
I love you.  I love you most!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Follow the Cross

When you're in the procession, with the priest and ministers, it's best to just "follow the cross."  First of all, it's raised high, so you can see it to follow.  Also, the people in the congregation seem to open up a way for it, so if you're behind the cross, you get to move along, too.  I've also thought that maybe the altar server could lower it like a lance and charge, but of course that's not done.

But the cross being the cross, you know that you'll get behind and lost in the crowd.  You might get jostled.  However, if you keep your eyes focused on that cross, you'll find your way back.
 Take up your cross and follow Me” (Matthew 16:24; Mark 8:34; Luke 9:23)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Hale for Thanksgiving

Although we in New England have been celebrating Thanksgiving since 1621, not every in the country did.  In fact, I remember when I was in Virginia, I heard that in 1607 Jamestown celebrated a Thanksgiving.  And in Florida, the Spanish had Masses of Thanksgiving in the sixteenth century!

But the national holiday wasn't proclaimed a holiday until Abraham Lincoln made the proclamation.  And he did so, because of Sarah Josepha Hale.  She had been writing letters to presidents, since Zachary Taylor, suggesting the proclamation.  You know Sara Josepha Hala, she wrote the nursery rhyme, Mary had a Little Lamb.

Friday, November 16, 2012


Everyone has an opinion of when the Last Days will come.  All religions have an opinion.  Even atheists speculate.  Science even chimes in by believing that the end of the earth will come by the earth's over-heating.  But that won't happen until billions of years from now.  

I find it interesting that the first Christians believed that the end would come in their life-time, with the Second Coming of Jesus.  Now everyone, Christian or not, believes the end is not coming in their life time.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Left Behind

John basking in the sun.
Noon Hill is part of the Shattuck Reservation, in Medfield, MA.  It's a link in the Bay Circuit Trail that surrounds the west area of Boston.  This is where the cross country hiking group went, today.  It was a good couple of hours walk.

We saw wetlands, trees, vernal pools, ravines, odd boulders and rocky ledges. But what turned out to be the excitement of the day, was that we almost lost John.

We were about half way through our hike, when we encountered a couple with a few cute dogs.  John stopped to take their pictures.  The last time we saw him, he was talking to them.

About 20 minutes later, we noticed that he was missing from the group.  We called.  No answer.  We whistled.  No response.  So Kevin went back to look.

After ten minutes, we realized that wasn't such a smart move.  Both John and Kevin are our drivers.

Fortunately, they came back.  John was missing for half an hour.  He said he took the wrong fork in the trail, realized it, and had to back track.

I thought he looked frightened.  However, it soon became apparent that he wasn't.  He fell behind taking pictures, and he stopped to make a "pit" stop.  He didn't tell us either time.  Luckily, we keep a close eye on him, now.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Where are the good Samaritans?

Last night I was at a club meeting.  I usually bring a member who is handicapped and can't drive.  It's a little inconvenient, but I do it anyway.  At the meeting, another member arrived who lives much closer to my friend than I do.  I asked her to take my friend home.

She very nicely excused herself from that.  She explained that the last time she brought her home, her car got stuck on the steep slope of her driveway.  She drives a standard and she couldn't back up out of her driveway.  My friend's son had to come out and drive her car out.

I understand.  But my friend said, "You don't have to go in the driveway.  I'll walk down.  My husband will meet me and walk down with me."

She still said "No."  She still wasn't comfortable with that arrangement.

It reminded me of the story of the Good Samaritan.  (Like 10: 29-37)  It has been thought that the reason the two Levites passed the injured man along the side of the road, was because the two priests would have made themselves "unclean" by touching him.  I find that inexcusable.  Whatever the reason they passed him by, even if it were because they didn't see him, the reason is still selfish.  They were thinking of themselves, first, not their neighbor's needs.

That's not the end of the story.  Upon leaving, I told my friend that I'd walk out first and bring the car up closer.  But I saw that the light wasn't too good on the steps.  So I asked the closest person to me to go back and help my friend, while I get the car.  She told me that she wasn't too steady herself, and wouldn't be able to.

I asked someone else.  She said that she couldn't see very well, herself.  It would be like the blind leading the blind.

I succeeded in bringing my friend home.  And I did it by myself!

Hubby thinks the reason is that people are so litigation conscious.  They're afraid if they help anyone, and the person falls, they'll be sued.  If fact, he questioned whether I should help her, anymore.

What do you think?

Lost in Space

Back from space.  I couldn't get on my blog.  The icon to post wasn't anywhere to be found.  I couldn't get to my dashboard.  I just couldn't access anything.  I thought my blogging days on The One True Faith were gone forever.  But this morning I remember that I have another blog, on google--the one I set up for my parish three year faith sharing Renew program.  So I went to St. Mary's Arise and got into its dashboard, and there were the two blogs.

I have no idea where the New Post Icon went on that new template.  But I went back to the plain old simple one.  Old faithful is back.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Lateran Fat

This post is not the leap that one might think it is, upon reading its title, Lateran  Fat.  Today the Church celebrates the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica.  This building was built by the Emperor Constantine, and since it was the first church ever built in Christendom, it is honored as the mother church. 

The reading this morning is the first Letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthians 3:9c-11, 16-17. Paul tells us that we humans are God’s building.  We are temples of God.

In the Gospel, John 2:13-22, Jesus refers to Himself as the temple.

In the Preface, the priest prayed:

For in your benevolence you are pleased to dwell in this house of prayer in order to perfect us as the temple of the Holy Spirit, supported by the perpetual help of your grace and resplendent with the glory of a life acceptable to you.

All these readings came to mind when I reflected on the rest of my day.  Today I have T.O.P.S.  My friends in T.O.P.S. are very, very, conscious of their bodies.  Whether or not, they call their bodies “temples of the Holy Spirit” or not, they are conscious that they should take care of their God given bodies.  That’s not so easy.  It can be depressing when you do take all the care you possibly can, and your body is not perfect. 

The basilica of Saint John Lateran needs constant care.  It is old.  It needs more and more care the older it gets.  Sometimes scaffolding around its structure seems permanent.  It’s a money pit.  One could become depressed and give up on maintenance. 

Would history ever forgive us?

Are we not more important than a building?  Paul reminds us:

Do you not know that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?  If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for the temple of God, which you are, is holy.

This is why my T.O.P.S. friends don’t give up.  They instinctively know that they are important in God’s eyes.  They can’t give up.  They have to constantly eat mindfully and live healthfully. 

I also add that the spiritual health of all of the T.O.P.S. people, in my chapter, anyway, is conscious that they reflect images of God.  They are very, very, supportive of each other.  We have all become friends.  We attend other functions, not related to T.O.P.S. at all, just to support another member.  We visit and call when one of us is sick.  And we pray for each other.  We pray to meet each other in heaven some day; where we’ll all have perfect bodies.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Anniversary of Deceased OPs

Pere Marie Jean-Joseph Lataste, O.P.
Apostle of Prisons
The Church has always connected the feast of All Saints, with that of All Souls, to emphasize the communion of saints.  So does the family of the Order of Preachers.  Accordingly, since yesterday was the Dominican Order's All Saints Day, today, the following day, we Dominicans remember our brothers and sisters who have gone before us with the sign of faith, into the guiding arms of St. Dominic, who lead them to Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord.  Therefore, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord's.

To die with Christ is to conquer the apathy of existence, to put aside greed, to abstain from fickleness, to dismiss levity of mind, to reject what is useless and what is done for appearances' sake, and to choose the gospel with sincerity and faithfully cling to it.

To die with Christ is to free oneself from riches and human glory, and to moderate one's life for the kingdom of God.

To die with Christ is to accept the risk of human love which demands the denial of self, or to accept the danger of witnessing to truth and justice before others, or to experience the difficulty of holding steadfastly to the faith one has received.

To die with Christ concerns those things which in our daily lives are austerities, or to sustain difficulties and accept change which brings about the renewal of fidelity.

To die with Christ is to accept one's own death as a sacrifice and a trusting burying of self in God, and also to accept in hope the deaths of our brothers, sisters and friends.

To die with Christ is to bear with a serene spirit the process of aging, the rejections, the losses -- even in apostolic labors.

To die with Christ is to be freed from egoism and self-absorption through the various incentives to love, to share, to sympathize with and to be reconciled with others.

To die with Christ is to experience at times the darkness of faith and courageously to endure it.

To every Dominican, friars, sisters, nuns, and laity, in whatever time in which they lived, may they receive the Holy Spirit and rest in peace and joy.  May our loving and all merciful Lord, receive with joy all our dead, today.  And may they intercede for us, forever.      Amen.

From the writings of fr. Pierre Andre Liege, O.P. "To die together with Christ."

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Order of Preachers' All Saints Day

Today the Dominican Family remembers "those who have gone before us in the family of St. Dominican and who offer us the example of their way of life, their company in the communion of saints, and the help of their intercession.
The Litany of Dominican Saints and Blesseds
Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy. Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God, the heavenly Father ... have mercy on us.
God, the Son, Redeemer of the world ... have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Spirit ... have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God ... have mercy on us.
Holy Mary ... pray for us.
Holy Mother of God ... pray for us.
Holy Virgin of Virgins ... pray for us.
All you holy angels and archangels ... pray for us.
All you holy Patriarchs and Prophets ... pray for us.
All you holy Apostles and Evangelists ... pray for us.
All you holy martyrs ... pray for us.
All you holy virgins and widows ... pray for us.
All you holy men and women ... pray for us.
Saint Michael ... pray for us.
Saint Gabriel ... pray for us.
Saint Raphael ... pray for us.
Saint Joseph ... pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist ... pray for us.
Saint Mary Magdalen ... pray for us.
Holy Father Augustine ... pray for us.
Holy Father Francis ... pray for us.
Blessed Jane of Aza ... pray for us.
Blessed Reginald ... pray for us.
Holy Father Dominic ... pray for us.
Holy Father Dominic ... pray for us.
Blessed Bertrand ... pray for us.
Blessed Mannes ... pray for us.
Blessed Diana ... pray for us.
Blessed Jordan of Saxony ... pray for us.
Blessed John of Salerno ... pray for us.
Blessed William and Companions ... pray for us.
Blessed Ceslaus ... pray for us.
Blessed Isnard ... pray for us.
Blessed Guala ... pray for us.
Blessed Peter Gonzalez ... pray for us.
Saint Zdislava ... pray for us.
Saint Peter of Verona ... pray for us.
Blessed Nicholas ... pray for us.
Saint Hyacinth ... pray for us.
Blessed Gonsalvo ... pray for us.
Blessed Sadoc and Companions ... pray for us.
Blessed Giles ... pray for us.
Saint Margaret of Hungary ... pray for us.
Blessed Batholomew of Vincenza ... pray for us.
Saint Thomas Aquinas ... pray for us.
Saint Raymond of Penyafort ... pray for us.
Blessed Innocent V ... pray for us.
Blessed Albert of Bergamo ... pray for us.
Saint Albert the Great ... pray for us.
Blessed John of Vercelli ... pray for us.
Blessed Ambrose ... pray for us.
Blessed Cecilia ... pray for us.
Blessed Benvenuta ... pray for us.
Blessed James of Varazze ... pray for us.
Blessed James of Bevagna ... pray for us.
Blessed Benedict XI ... pray for us.
Blessed Jane of Orvieto ... pray for us.
Blessed Jordan of Pisa ... pray for us.
Saint Emily ... pray for us.
Blessed James Salomonio ... pray for us.
Saint Agnes of Montepulciano ... pray for us.
Blessed Simon ... pray for us.
Blessed Margaret of Castello ... pray for us.
Blessed Augustine Kazotic ... pray for us.
Blessed James Benefatti ... pray for us.
Blessed Imelda ... pray for us.
Blessed Dalmatius ... pray for us.
Blessed Margaret Ebner ... pray for us.
Blessed Villana ... pray for us.
Blessed Peter Ruffia ... pray for us.
Blessed Henry ... pray for us.
Blessed Sibyllina ... pray for us.
Blessed Anthony of Pavonio ... pray for us.
Saint Catherine of Siena ... pray for us.
Blessed Marcolino ... pray for us.
Blessed Raymond of Capua ... pray for us.
Blessed Andrew Franchi ... pray for us.
Saint Vincent Ferrer ... pray for us.
Blessed Clara ... pray for us.
Blessed John Dominic ... pray for us.
Blessed Alvarez ... pray for us.
Blessed Maria ... pray for us.
Blessed Peter of Castello ... pray for us.
Blessed Andrew Abellon ... pray for us.
Blessed Stephen ... pray for us.
Blessed Peter Geremia ... pray for us.
Blessed John of Fiesole ... pray for us.
Blessed Lawrence of Ripafratta ... pray for us.
Blessed Anthony della Chiesa ... pray for us.
Saint Antoninus ... pray for us.
Blessed Anthony Neyrot ... pray for us.
Blessed Margaret of Savoy ... pray for us.
Blessed Bartholomew of Cerverio ... pray for us.
Blessed Matthew ... pray for us.
Blessed Constantius ... pray for us.
Blessed Christopher ... pray for us.
Blessed Damian ... pray for us.
Blessed Andrew of Peschiera ... pray for us.
Blessed Bernard ... pray for us.
Blessed Jane of Portugal ... pray for us.
Blessed James of Ulm ... pray for us.
Blessed Augustine of Biella ... pray for us.
Blessed Aimo ... pray for us.
Blessed Sebastian ... pray for us.
Blessed Mark ... pray for us.
Blessed Columba ... pray for us.
Blessed Magdalen ... pray for us.
Blessed Osanna of Mantua ... pray for us.
Blessed John Liccio ... pray for us.
Blessed Dominic Spadafora ... pray for us.
Blessed Stephana ... pray for us.
Saint Adrian ... pray for us.
Blessed Lucy ... pray for us.
Blessed Catherine Racconigi ... pray for us.
Blessed Osanna of Kotor ... pray for us.
Saint Pius V ... pray for us.
Saint John of Cologne ... pray for us.
Blessed Maria Bartholomew ... pray for us.
Saint Louis Bertrand ... pray for us.
Saint Catherine de Ricci ... pray for us.
Blessed Robert ... pray for us.
Blessed Alphonsus and Companions ... pray for us.
Saint Rose ... pray for us.
Saint Dominic Ibanez and Companions ... pray for us.
Blessed Agnes of Jesus ... pray for us.
Saint Lawrence Ruiz and Companions ... pray for us.
Saint Martin de Porres ... pray for us.
Blessed Peter Higgins ... pray for us.
Blessed Francis de Capillas ... pray for us.
Saint Juan Macias ... pray for us.
Blessed Terence ... pray for us.
Blessed Ann of the Angels ... pray for us.
Blessed Francis de Posadas ... pray for us.
Saint Louis de Montfort ... pray for us.
Blessed Francis Gil ... pray for us.
Saint Matteo ... pray for us.
Blessed Peter Sanz and Companions ... pray for us.
Saint Vicent Liem ... pray for us.
Saint Hyacinth Castaneda ... pray for us.
Blessed Marie ... pray for us.
Blessed George ... pray for us.
Blessed Catherine Jarrige ... pray for us.
Saint Ignatius and Companions ... pray for us.
Saint Dominic An-Kham and Companions ... pray for us.
Saint Joseph Khang and Companions ... pray for us.
Blessed Francis Coll ... pray for us.
Blessed Hyacinthe Cormier ... pray for us.
Blessed Pier Giorgio ... pray for us.
Blessed Bartolo ... pray for us.
Blessed Michael Czartoryski ... pray for us.
Blessed Julia Rodzinska ... pray for us.                                                                                        Blessed Pere Lataste…pray for us.
All holy Dominican brothers and sisters ... pray for us.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, ... spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, ... graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, ... have mercy on us.
Let us pray...
God, source of all holiness, you have enriched your Church
with many gifts in the saints of the Order of Preachers.
By following the example of our brothers and sisters,
may we come to enjoy their company
for ever in the Kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ,
Your Son, who lives and reigns with You
and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Faith Calling

What do you think?  Poor picture, I know.  It's a picture taken from my Kindle.  I'll describe what it is.  There's a lighthouse with Jesus at the entrance. The lighthouse is actually Brant Light on Nantucket. There's a little bridge to it.  On the bridge are people from my Lay Dominican Chapter.  The very last person, the lady yelling, is me.  I have a big mouth, no?

At first, I didn't understand.  I kept focusing on my big mouth.  "Why am I yelling?"  But my friend told me to look at it this way.  The light is Jesus.  People are going to him, and I'm yelling for others to come, too.

This picture is from the book, Pencil in the Hole, written by one of my "cloistered brothers."

Sunday, November 4, 2012

OP Democracy

I was out of the running.  By that I mean, that I wasn't eligible to be voted in office.  Terms of office are for three years.  And one can only serve two terms.  I've done that, so I wasn't eligible to be voted in again.

One term I was Secretary; this last term I was Formation Director.  Dominicans elect people to the Council.  Then the council gets together and decide who should be in what position: President, Vice President, Secretary, and Formation Director.  Other chapters have more councillors, but this is all my chapter has.

In the Dominican tradition of elections, electors must be present to vote, candidates must be present, also.  There are no prior nominations and no one can refuse eligibility prior to being elected.  That's because we invoke the Holy Spirit before the election and He's choosing.  Voting is by secret ballot.

One last peccadillo that is peculiar to the Dominican Family.  One should not vote for oneself.  I guess it's humility, but to me, it shows a lack of confidence in one's abilities.    

Saturday, November 3, 2012


One literary device used in writing psalms is parallelism.  And there are different varieties of writing in parallelism.  One of these is making a list, e.i., Psalm 94 (95) Come, let us sing joyfully to the Lord;
   let us acclaim the Rock of our salvation.
   Let us greet Him with thanksgiving;
   let us joyfully sing psalms to Him.

See the List?

Off the top of my head,  I'll make a list of blessings to pray for:

         Blessing Psalm

God bless those dear to your heart
                                     and mine.
God bless those in trouble, with His
                                     love divine.
God bless those frightened of life, far
                                      and near.
God bless those whose path isn't certain,
                                  make it clear.
God bless those who see no Truth, they
                                  are blind.
God bless those who feel no love, with
                                  grace divine.
God bless you when your allotted time
                                  has ended.
God bless you when He bring you home
                                  to heaven.

Friday, November 2, 2012

St. Mulatto Dog

November 3 is the Feast Day of St. Martin de Porres.  Martin is a wonderful saint.  He is the Dominican version of St. Francis, except he's not as crazy.  He was very, very humble.  As the illegitimate son of a black/Indian/white union, he was considered a mulatto.  At that time, seventeenth century, race was a criteria for social strata.  Martin was on the bottom.

Stories abound about him.  He had the gift of healing, bilocation, prophecy, and humility.  He is often pictured with rats around his feet and a broom in his hand.  The broom to designate his station in life.  The rats because he communed with them.

My favorite story is when a priest was in a foul mood and became angry at Martin and called him a Mulatto Dog!  That would have been insulting, offensive words to start a fight.  But not to Martin.  He welcomed insults because Jesus was insulted, too.  Insults were opportunities to unite himself to Jesus.    Martin was very kind to the priest and won him over.  It helped that he cured him.  ;-)

Martin de Porres was the first black saint in the Americas.


On All Souls Day, we not only remember the dead, but we apply our efforts, through prayer, almsgiving, and the Mass, to their release from Purgatory. There are two plenary indulgences attached to All Souls Day, one for visiting a church and another for visiting a cemetery. (The plenary indulgence for visiting a cemetery can also be obtained every day from November 1-8, and, as a partial indulgence, on any day of the year.) While the actions are performed by the living, the merits of the indulgences are applicable only to the souls in Purgatory.
Praying for the dead is a Christian obligation. In the modern world, when many have come to doubt the Church's teaching on Purgatory, the need for such prayers has only increased. The Church devotes the month of November to prayer for the Holy Souls in Purgatory, and participation in the Mass of All Souls Day is a good way to begin the month.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

My Favorite Magnificat

I'm still singing the songs from the Missionaries of the Poor Concert.  Here's one of my favorites.  Thanks to Michelle Sherliza, O.P. who put the words on YOU TUBE.  Song music and words by Rev. Fr. Richard Ho Lung, M.O.P.

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