Friday, September 23, 2011

Novena to St Therese

Yes it's almost her feast day again so start praying!

O Little Therese of the Child Jesus, please pick for me a rose from the heavenly gardens and send it to me as a message of love.
O Little Flower of Jesus, ask God today to grant the favors I now place with confidence in your hands .... (Mention specific requests).
St. Therese, help me to always believe as you did, in God's great love for me, so that I might imitate your "Little Way" each day.  Amen.

Thursday, September 22, 2011


Tuesday Sept 20, while stopped at a stop sign some young guy rear-ended DS' car. She went to the doctor and is doing all right, as far as injuries from car wrecks go. She got the car checked too and that will be in the hospital for a while... Pray the repairs go smoothly and that she recovers too, to better than before.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Sunday, September 11, 2011



Ten years ago today in the early morning, I was settling in for an hour of adoration at the chapel of the convent of the Dominican Sisters of St. Ceceilia in Nashville, TN. I was a postulant only 3 short weeks, having just entered in August. My postulant class was off at school. For some reason, I was the only postulant not scheduled for classes on Tuesdays, so, to take advantage of my free time, I joined the Novices in their special holy hour. After the hour was up, we made our way out of the chapel through the side door leading to the staircase that took us to the novitiate on the very top floor. A Sister was waiting for us on the other side of the doorway. It was Silence, but she broke it in a whisper, "We've been under attack this morning... the Twin Towers are gone." Coming out of an hour of contemplation, I was still trying to get used to the lighting in the hallway. I couldn't quite comprehend what Sister meant, it was stunning news. As we made our way up the stairs, she continued to tell us what had transpired while we were praying in the chapel. She went on to tell us that the Sisters in the infirmary called down to Mother General's office because they couldn't find the "The Price is Right" on their television sets. One of the retired Sisters told Mother that "the same thing is playing over and over on every channel." Mother went up to the Infirmary to investigate, and that's how she discovered that our country had been attacked. The Sisters in the convent that morning all gathered in prayer and watched as the events unfolded right before their eyes on live television. I was shawked and stunned at what was happening, and my first thoughts were to members of my own family who worked in places that could be possible targets of terrorists. I went back down to the chapel, and I prayed for my family. I also prayed for the country I loved so deeply, the victims of this outrage, and I found myself with a new sense of purpose as to why I was in the convent: to be a light in the darkness, even when it looked as if the darkness was winning...


This day ten years ago I was not going to Church at all nor living in a state of grace. When I saw what was happening on TV I thought something more along the lines of "Oh great here comes world war three" than of my own or others' salvation. Now, thanks be to God, I can pray for all those involved, those who died, those who lived and still bear the mental and physical scars, and even those who did this. All answers can be found in meditating on Christ's passion.

DS: I found today's readings at Mass very fitting and appropriate to this day. The First Reading in particular struck me as a warning to not be "vengeful."

Sirach 27: 30
30Anger and wrath, these also are abominations, and the sinful man will possess them.

Sirach 28: 1 - 9
1He that takes vengeance will suffer vengeance from the Lord, and he will firmly establish his sins.2Forgive your neighbor the wrong he has done, and then your sins will be pardoned when you pray.3Does a man harbor anger against another, and yet seek for healing from the Lord?4Does he have no mercy toward a man like himself, and yet pray for his own sins?5If he himself, being flesh, maintains wrath, who will make expiation for his sins?6Remember the end of your life, and cease from enmity, remember destruction and death, and be true to the commandments.7Remember the commandments, and do not be angry with your neighbor; remember the covenant of the Most High, and overlook ignorance.8Refrain from strife, and you will lessen sins; for a man given to anger will kindle strife,9and a sinful man will disturb friends and inject enmity among those who are at peace.

Then, we hear of God being the God of the "living and the dead."

Romans 14: 7 - 9
7None of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself.8If we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord; so then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord's.9For to this end Christ died and lived again, that he might be Lord both of the dead and of the living.

And finally, in today's Gospel is the story of the servant who receives mercy at the hands of his master, only to turn around and be unjust to another servant. Jesus tells us that the mercy we dish out is the mercy we will receive. Matthew 18:21-35

I know it is very difficult to hear, but many of us who hold grudges against mortal enemies, or keep people out of our lives need to re-think that situation. Today, of all days, God is asking us to forgive. There is nothing else that can be done about situations that wound or hurt us, so why not forgive? We will realize that it is in forgiving that we receive all the healing we need to mend those broken relationships and heal those wounds.

Friday, September 9, 2011



"Amen, I say to you, whatever you bind on Earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on Earth shall be loosed in heaven."  Jesus' words to the disciples are made real in the image above of the papal emblem, the so called "keys of the kingdom" one representing Earth the other heaven.  Christ has given each validly ordained priest that power of binding and loosing which he exercises in the sacrament of Confession.  A  priest most offen loosens sins in that sacrament but sometimes, for the sake of the sinner in order to correct, the sins are bound.

This happened to me once, several years ago, so I know what it is like.  The priest, after hearing my confession, said basically that it was difficult for him but he could not grant me absolution.  He explained why, he explained what I had to do in order to be granted absolution, and that I was unable to participate in any of the sacraments until absolution was granted.  I left the confessional in a daze.  Mass had already started so I sat in a pew torn between staying and leaving.  Why stay if I cant participate?  What a mean Church not granting me absolution.  If I went to whom shall I go?  To sin and death or obey and be with He who has the words of eternal life?  I stayed.  I had told the priest I would obey him, I would follow what he said, so I sat through Mass.  I left after still in a daze still wondering can he do that?  Research proved that yes priests can.

Needless to say I was given many graces, amended my life, although it was veeeery difficult and was eventually absolved.  God knew what was necessary.  Even though the correction may hurt the eternal fires of Hell hurt a lot more!!  I love the Church and the sacrament of Confession for no such thing exists outside of it.  That apostolic, valid absolution is indescribable.  Go.  You will feel a lot better afterwards.

I also thank God for those who dared to correct me in my sinfulness although it did take a long time and softening of heart to be able to receive it..  As we heard in this Sunday's readings we will be held accountable if we dont even try to say hey what you are doing is wrong.  We may not always go about it in the best manner, which we must admit before God, but we do have that obligation to try and help our brothers and sisters to avoid sin.  We may face their anger but Id rather face that than God's.  Ive upset Him enough

Sorry for the lack of posting lately

Thursday, September 1, 2011

OPCarm Goes to Carmel- among other places


The day started off with doing laundry and running errands. Errands such as mailing someone's several month late birthday present! That out of the way we needed food and so it was off to my first first taste of Chik-fil-A

It doesnt look like much but it was delicious and I liked their waffle-cut fries and lemonade. Having eaten we were ready to hit the road for San Antonio!!! YAAY!

Our first stop would be the Basilica of the Little Flower where there was a wedding about to take place so we didnt have much time, however, we did have enough time to look around and take some pictures.

St Teresa de Jesus dancing because Carmelites are fun unlike OPs who just mope.

Recreation of her real grave in Lisieux

Someone praying, probably asking to enter Carmel.

Wear the brown scapular already!

DS: The day started kind of late. I wanted to get to San Antonio in the early a.m., but we got up late, headed over to my house to do laundry (I think,) and got to San Antonio in the afternoon. The first place on our agenda was the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Little Flower.

IT is probably the most beautiful and poorest basilica in the whole wide world. But it is one of the treasures of San Antonio, and I love going there for prayer and silent recollection. OF course, dragging along Vee, you don't get silence nor recollection. The visit there was still very beneficial. You don't have to do much to soak in the graces of Jesus...just being in His Presence is enough. I'm happy Vee was able to visit this beautiful place, especially since she is getting chased by several Carmelite Saints (I can't figure out why they would want her!)