Monday, June 29, 2009

Saint Peter and Saint Paul

"Today we celebrate the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul. Throughout the Universal Church, we are constantly reminded of the heroic attributes each man dedicated towards spreading the Gospel to the entire world.

Saint Peter, the Prince of the Apostles and the Christ-bestowed head of the Church gives us a great example of human weaknesses transformed into the great accomplishments of his successful preaching and ministry, initially to the Judaic followers of Jesus and finally to the entire Roman Empire. His martyrdom at Rome illustrates the unwavering faith Peter maintained in the mystery of Jesus’ Paschal Mystery and inspired Gospel message.

Saint Paul, Apostle to the Gentiles presents an equally “larger than life” image of a man that experienced the power of the Gospel’s conversion through his own transformation from a persecutor of the Christian faith to one of the greatest influences on the entire course of Catholicism and its spread throughout the world.

In modern times, when we easily transport messages and information throughout the world in literally seconds, reflect on the enormity of the massive evangelical successes of Saint Peter and Saint Paul. Unsurpassed in their travels, teachings and ministry to both the heirs to the covenant of Abraham and the covenant of Jesus on the cross, they literally brought the Gospel to the entire known world of their day..." (Continued at Catholic Exchange)

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Keeping Catholic Education pure...

I know a Catholic mother who has been in correspondence with me for some time now who is very concerned about what's going on in the Catholic classroom. She's been telling me about the curriculum and her deep concerns about this stuff being taught in a Catholic setting. I'm sure that there are many of you parents out there in the same situation. But, maybe you're not sure what to do or if you can do something at all. I had been hoping and praying that this woman, Josie could find some like-minded parents so that she could present her concerns to the school with the back up of other parents. I hoped she could form a committee or organization. Well, she came up with a brilliant idea! She started a blog the other day! It will be a hub for parents to gather to encourage one another and to come up with concrete solutions. I hope you'll take a look at her blog and please chime in (by way of a comment) to the conversation. Do you have any ideas? What have you done? What can you all do together?

In one of her posts, Josie writes:

"It was motherly instinct, I think, that first alerted me that something was wrong. It was a normal day in the school carline, waiting with my boys until their older sister came outside to meet us after a day in the first grade at the local parish school. She plopped into her seat ready to be buckled. "Mommy?", she said to me, "There's something very important for you in my folder." We had a few minutes until all the children loaded up and the engines started running, so I unzipped her bag to take a look. Something exciting, I hoped, as carlines can get pretty boring. I opened the little envelope intended only for mom and dad's hands. At first glance, I was puzzled. My eyes darted around the pages of the document enclosed. Several things jumped out at me:

"We believe that parents/guardians are and should be the primary educators of their children; nevertheless (my emphasis) the parish and school community must play a secondary but essential role in educating children for healthy relationships...
"Please sign and return the attached permission we strive to keep our children safe and healthy."

Take a look here at Upholding Purity in the Catholic Classroom. Josie tells me that she has plans to work on the appearance of the blog in the upcoming days but really wanted to get something going right away. It really seems to me to be a Divine inspiration that she has answered the call for. I know that a lot of prayer went behind her decision to create this gathering place for parents. Please support this brave mother. We are all on this journey in life together, right? We can help one another for sure.

Feel free to chime in here too with your concerns, advice, and suggestions.

Praying for many blessings for you on this summer day!



Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A Precious baby and a mother's decision.

Read Mary De Turris Poust's post at the OSV blog about a woman's decision and a baby's life...

When a baby is too 'precious' to live

"When I read this story on The New York Times blog "Motherlode" today, I found myself wilting inside. It is the story of an abortion, or a decision to choose abortion, and it unfolds right before your eyes in black and white. It made me so sad for the unborn baby and for the woman, Emmie, who ultimately concludes that abortion is the only way to keep her life on track.

I kept trying to wrap my mind around Emmie's belief that her "little zygote," as she calls her baby, is too precious to hand over to another couple through adoption and so the better choice is abortion, that any baby is too precious not to plan for and so would be better off aborted than arrive in a world that is not ready..." (Continued here.)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day!

Happy and blessed day to all of the fathers out there and all who are in a father role. Let's not forget about our priests!

Dear St. Joseph, please look down upon fathers and priests everywhere today and always! Amen.

God bless your day! May it be filled with family fun and togetherness. :)

God bless and hugs,


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Saving money on groceries...

Many of us these days are thinking of ways to conserve and cut down on some of our expenses due to economic challenges.

I just came across this smart and organized woman! Take a look to see how she is saving money.

What are your ideas? Are you making your own laundry detergent, soaps, clothes? If so, would you like to share what you are doing? I have a few posts over at my new blog: View From the Domestic Church about laundry and soap.

Hope for a gentle summer...

Elizabeth Foss writes a beautiful spiritual summer reflection of hope...

Hope for a gentle summer
Elizabeth Foss

"It was one of those infamous rabbit trails that can bear great fruit in prayer. Pope Benedict has declared the Year for Priests to begin June 19. Additionally, he has said that St. Jean Vianney is to be patron of the world’s priests. So, I began to dig up St. Jean Vianney quotes to toss out to my children over the next year.

Often, when I look for ways to inspire virtue in my children, I find instead that virtue is inspired in me first. This one hit me between the eyes. St. Jean Vianney piqued my interest immediately by pointing to the example of a favorite saint. He wrote, “St. Francis de Sales, that great saint, would leave off writing with the letter of a word half-formed in order to reply to an interruption.” Hey, Elizabeth, saints don’t say “just a minute” and then finish writing the sentence or the paragraph or the entire post or project while toddlers melt down and little boys wrestle. They leave the letters half-formed..." (continued here)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

A Casual Encounter with Grace

My book, Grace Cafe: Serving up Recipes for Faithful Mothering was chosen as the "Book Pick" by the National Catholic Register this week...

A Casual Encounter With Grace

BY Father Walter Schu, LC

June 14-20, 2009 Issue | Posted 6/5/09 at 10:05 AM

"Grace Café is an aptly titled book. How does one discover grace — that sublime reality so distant from most people’s vocabulary today and, sadly, so often absent from their lives?

Within these pages, seasoned author Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle makes that elusive encounter with grace seem as casual and natural as a mid-morning rendezvous with an old friend at the local café.

Fyodor Dostoyevsky once said, “Beauty will save the world.” If that is true, then Grace Café — addressed specifically to mothers — could bring many mothers one step closer to salvation.

Even, and especially, in the midst of the daily trials of raising a family, such as being confronted with a steadily growing mountain of unfolded clothes, the beauty of motherhood alights from the page to capture hearts.

In response to the culture’s exalting of careerism for women, O’Boyle ponders the value of being a mother, the transcendent mission it entails. She says:

“Women have been put through the mill, so to speak. However, as Christian mothers, we can consider the fact that nothing can be more meaningful than to be part of the creation of a human being, to be able to nurture it within our bodies, and then raise our child within a loving home — preparing him or her for eternal life. In my opinion, nothing compares — nothing!”

The simple prose reveals a mother’s warm heart, as O’Boyle offers hints on how to carve out time for prayer and savor the grace of the present moment in a family where the young ones always seem to grow up just a bit too quickly.

Interspersed with personal anecdotes are succinct quotes from the wisdom of holy men and women — especially Pope John Paul II and Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, whom the author was friends with.

All mothers know that their vocation entails its share of difficult moments, and O’Boyle tackles this aspect of motherhood head-on in the chapter “Discovering Grace Within Suffering.”

She reflects, “This whole concept of giving and hurting may seem absurd, especially in today’s culture. Why should we feel uncomfortable — God forbid — or selfless, when we can avoid it? It’s because the love in our motherly heart calls us to it; it beckons us to give of ourselves unreservedly. Real love demands blood, sweat and tears.”

She sums things up with these encouraging words from St. Ignatius of Loyola: “If God causes you to suffer much, it is a sign that he has great designs for you, and that he certainly intends to make you a saint.”

One slight disappointment may be the final chapter on evangelizing the household and the world. It contains several long Gospel passages, which perhaps could have been reduced to allow a more in-depth look at how the family stands at the very center of the New Evangelization.

All mothers who seek to glimpse with renewed spiritual vision the priceless value of their calling, all those who long to encounter grace amid the joys and trials, the dirty dishes and daily crises of family life will discover in O’Boyle’s book a grace-filled companion along the path to becoming a saint."

(Legionary Father Walter Schu is the author of The Splendor of Love)

(National Catholic Register)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Beautiful Saint Anne!

My friend, Anne in Australia gives us some lovely thoughts and prayers to ponder today. She said:

"Molly over at Heaven not Harvard has shared her own devotion to St Anne as well as her beautiful statues and images of her! (I love them Molly!)

It is always such a beautiful thing to see another mother develop a new or deeper devotion to the mother of Our Lady ~ St Anne, who is our most merciful grandmother. That they too, come to discover her mercy, her powerful and loving intercession.

I love to keep focusing on the attribute of mercy. On this earth she dwelt in the house of mercy this has to be significant in the way that Our Lord, the Bread of Life was born in Bethlehem, meaning 'House of Bread.' That connection I believe, is our pointer, our guide to the heart of Good St Anne. The Church is full of examples throughout the ages ~ that heaven drops it's clues to those who are open to see. Of course, good and loving nana's, grandmothers, grandma's throughout the world, knowingly or unknowingly, follow her example, for they are always merciful, in a special way..." (Continued at her beautiful blog)

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Prom pics, coming up...

I'll post a few prom pictures from my daughter's senior prom which was last night. It's been a very busy day and getting late now, so until tomorrow...

Sweet dreams!


PS Don't forget to check out my new blog: View from the Domestic Church

Friday, June 5, 2009

Where have I been?

I have been so busy, but then again - what's new? I wanted to at least check in with you to let you know that we are in the midst of the end of the school year activities here. Lots of ceremonies and meetings to attend. My high school senior daughter, Mary-Catherine was awarded two scholarships! Woo hoo! Tons of college paper work to be finished up - it's never-ending. Just when you think you're finished, you are asked to fill out a few more. :) There's a senior prom to get ready for too.

I started a new blog: View From the Domestic Church (as if I have nothing else to do!). I felt very inspired to offer more inspiration for our domestic churches. I am heartened about the conversations going on over there already. Feel free to join in the fun. There are also contests going on there, so check it out and pass the word please.

I am also putting finishing touches on two new books, so stay tuned. It's very exciting! I'm also preparing for a retreat day that I will be giving in Corpus Christi, Texas next week end.

I hope you have a grace-filled Friday!

God bless and hugs,


Monday, June 1, 2009

A baby's conversation with God...

"A baby asked God, 'They tell me you are sending me to earth tomorrow, but how am I going to live there being so small and helpless?' God said, 'Your angel will be waiting for you and will take care of you.'

The child further inquired, 'But tell me, here in heaven I don't have to do anything but sing and smile to be happy.' God said, 'Your angel will sing for you and will also smile for you. And you will feel your angel's love and be very happy.'

Again the child asked, 'And how am I going to be able to understand when people talk to me if I don't know the language?' God said, 'Your angel will tell you the most beautiful and sweet words you will ever hear, and with much patience and care, your angel will teach you how to speak.'

'And what am I going to do when I want to talk to you?' God said, 'Your angel will place your hands together and will teach you how to pray.'

'Who will protect me?' God said, 'Your angel will defend you even if it means risking its life.'

'But I will always be sad because I will not see you anymore.' God said, 'Your angel will always talk to you about Me and will teach you the way to come back to Me, even though I will always be next to you.'

At that moment there was much peace in Heaven, but voices from Earth could be heard and the child hurriedly asked, 'God, if I am to leave now, please tell me my angel's name.'

God said, 'You will simply call her, 'Mom.'"

(Author unknown)

A brand new month...

A brand new day of a brand new month! How will we use this time? What does Our Lord have in store for us? Are we open to His will in our lives?

St. Justin, on your feast day, please intercede before the Blessed Trinity for us and ask for the graces that we most need. Amen.

Our Blessed Mother's clothing...

Go on over to Elena-Maria's new blog "Fountain of Elias" to read some interesting points about the clothing of Our Lady of Guadalupe.