Sunday, April 9, 2017

why I love Holy Week











I look at Palm Sunday as a sort of reset button.

No matter what this Lent has been about, no matter what I’ve done or not done well, no matter what my intentions were five weeks ago—I can give myself fully to this coming week.

So if you are like me and you’re wondering if it’s too late, I’m here to remind you that it’s only the beginning.

This is Holy Week.

Look at this week with new eyes.

Say yes to the quiet moments. They’re everywhere!

Look at your Bible (or daily readings) before you look at your phone in the mornings (Pope Francis’ suggestion, not mine!).

Take time to read the Passion story.


Spread joy -- in whatever circumstance you find yourself in this week.

Celebrate the Triduum… Thursday’s Mass of the Lord’s Supper… Friday’s Adoration of the Cross… and yes, if at all possible, go to the Easter Vigil.  It is the most beautiful liturgy in the Catholic Church.

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Note #1:   The photos you see here are from my #LentPhotoaDay efforts, a part of my #LentenWalk this year! 

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Note #2:   In order to enter fully into my “reset efforts” this week, I am signing off all social media!  

Know that I will hold you and yours in my prayers throughout these holy days! 

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“We should glory in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ,
for he is our salvation,
our life,
and our resurrection;
 through him we are saved and made free.”
~Galatians 6:14














Monday, March 13, 2017

Blessed Stanley Rother of Okarche and Santiago Atitlán

I have many topics I want to tell you about... but this news trumps everything!

It is now official! Archbishop Coakley received official word this morning from Rome that Servant of God Father Stanley Rother will be beatified in Oklahoma City in September. 

Praised be Jesus Christ! 

Want to know more about the first American martyr?  

I humbly suggest my book, the first published biography on Father Stanley:  "The Shepherd Who Didn't Run: Fr. Stanley Rother, Martyr from Oklahoma"

Thursday, February 23, 2017

why we must pray for reverence


“I think you have much ‘compassion and understanding’ but it is limited at present by the natural. You tend to expect others to see as you see, and to feel impatient when they don’t.  And if people sense that one feels dismissive, their hackles rise and, in fear, they can’t listen. We must pray for reverence, that deep acceptance of the difference of others that lets us show them what we are saying. Once people really ‘hear,’ they nearly always respond. But nothing to be sad about. Having difficulties is a way of growing. It opens us up to him.  
Am I mistaken in detecting a slight note of despondency? Living as we do in Jesus, with all sorrow, failure, and disappointment primarily just ways of receiving him more deeply, life is infinitely lovely. It may not appear so, but it is. Our happiness, even if happiness of pure faith, is a duty we owe to the sad world where frustrations are not, as are ours, gateways into love. Happiness is a willed thing, therefore we choose to let Jesus be our joy, our confidence, and to ignore our poor little fumbles. If we really want him and want to live in Love, it will most surely happen.”
 ~Sister Wendy Beckett in “Spiritual Letters”

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“In every life we have some trouble
When you worry you make it double
Don’t worry, be happy”

~ Bobby McFerrin, “Don’t Worry Be Happy”

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The Christian does not know through speculations that God, the absolute Being, is wholly love: he knows this through the fact that God gave his Son up for the world that he loved so much, and not only for the totality en bloc, but for each individual one of us. I have been rescued in my sin and lovelessness by the Son of God, who suffered and died on the cross for my guilt and who wishes, in his Resurrection to the Father, to bring me back into the eternal triune love. If one grants that this is true, then, according to the view of the Apostles who bear witness to this message and proclaim it, there can be only one decent answer on the part of man, and once again it is Paul who formulates it: I have been crucified with Christ. I live, yet it is not really I who live: Christ lives in me.”
~Fr. Hans Urs von Balthasar , 
as quoted in Magnificat Magazine 
(February 17, 2017)
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touching hands
                                                         Reaching out, 
touching me, 
touching you"

~Neil Diamond, "Sweet Caroline"

Thursday, February 2, 2017

because God will always find a way to reach me

"What she taught me is… 
You don't put yourself into what you write... 
you find yourself there."
~ the character of Alan Bennett, 
speaking about the lady of many names, 
in the movie, The Lady in the Van 

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It seems crazy to me that it’s been such a long time since I’ve written a blog post.

It’s an odd little circle. The more things pop up in my life, the more I want – and need – to write. But the hardest it also becomes to make it happen.

Writing helps me discover what I think and assists me as I sort through what I’m feeling, as I did a few weeks ago on the day that Fidel Castro died.

But when even been able to write a blog post seems too much, when I am struggling to simply be faithful to my daily prayer, then I have to rely on other avenues to connect the dots within my spirit.  Things like music and deliberately walking slowly and watching the stars at night.

And above all, I put my trust in God to show me His presence in my life as is. He always does, generously, faithfully, often with great humor

Sometimes He’ll speak to me in a movie, as He did with “the Lady in the Van.” Or it could be through the lyrics to a song that I’ve heard but never paid attention to before.

Oftentimes it means that I start having very vivid dreams. And often, they are dreams with recurring themes, such as houses—something I’ve written about before.

As I think about the houses in my dreams it is clear to me that this “sign” or image often surfaces when I’m in some sort of transitional phase, journeying into something new, or perhaps simply facing something unknown.

Don’t know what this means other than it is, still, a new year, offering both anticipation and hope, as well as an invitation to newness. New beginnings. New perspectives. New ideas. New “something-to-be-named.”

Thanks for walking with me… still!