Sunday Snippets — A Catholic Carnival

It’s time once again to join the Catholic bloggers at Sunday Snippets – A Catholic Carnival, hosted by RAnn of This, That and the Other Thing fame.

Read, enjoy and join the fun by sharing your posts, RAnn shows you the ropes here.

It’s been too long since I posted here. Wifi connections have been a problem. I’m trying to get back in the swing of things.

Here are my snippets :

Recently Published Children’s Book – “Christ and the Children”

Grounded in the Glorious

Becoming Flame – One Shot Wednesday- Week 51

Happy Holy Days! Getting Ready?

Get ready!  Here come the Holy Days.  We seem to be picking up speed as this year closes in a burst of joyous holy light.  Will we be able to see it?  It’s like waiting for a meteor shower.  Will the clouds obscure our view? There are clouds all around, there always are, but the eye of our soul have a lens like no other.  Hearts polished by prayer, by care and as always, too, by sacrifice, can see light raking the darkness.  No Alice through the looking glass here.  Christmas is for sober souls and vigilant seekers.

As I Am

Prayer by Fr. Raymond:

Because I am obnoxious, forgive me Lord.

Because I am dishonest, forgive me Lord.

Because I am egotistical , forgive me Lord.

Because I am undisciplined, forgive me Lord.

Because I am weak, forgive me Lord.

Because I am impure, forgive me Lord.

Because I am arrogant, forgive me Lord.

Because I am self-centered, forgive me Lord.

Because I am pompous, forgive me Lord.

Because I am insincere, forgive me Lord.

Because I am judgmental , forgive me Lord.

Because I am grasping, forgive me Lord.

Because I am shallow, forgive me Lord.

Because I am inconsistent, forgive me Lord.

Because I am unfaithful, forgive me Lord.

Because I am immoral, forgive me Lord.

Because I am disobedient, forgive me Lord.

Because I am selfish, forgive me Lord.

Because I am lukewarm, forgive me Lord.

Because I am slothful, forgive me Lord.

Because I am unloving, forgive me Lord.

Because I am uncommitted, forgive me Lord.

Because I am sinful, forgive me Lord.

Because I am loved by You, thank you Lord.

Healer and Keeper of My Soul

A Smile After Dying

A must read:

HE SMILED AFTER HIS REPOSE.

After a conversation of us with some fathers of the monastery, we convey to you the story of the event.

The two monks that were with him until the very last moment, sprinted to the abbot, Elder Ephraim, to let him and the rest of the fathers know about the repose of Elder Joseph and the former two didn’t pay attention to the reposed, who was left with his mouth half-open.

Thus, they came back to the cell, to prepare the reposed according to the monastic. Elder Ephraim ordered them to leave his face uncovered. The fathers tried to close his mouth, but as it was quite late, his mouth remained open. They even tied a gauze around his head, so that his mouth would remain closed, but after they removed it his mouth opened up again. About 45 minutes had already gone, by since he had passed away.

-Elder, what should we do, it looks bad with the  mouth open?

-Leave him as he is, do not cover his face!

Read the rest and see the photos here.

Blazing Anger – Triumphant Day

The crew of Divine Office.org in a “chatter & cheese” segment (spontaneous sharing after prayer), brought up a certain delight in God’s burning anger that we have been hearing about in the readings from the Book of Revelation for the last week or so.  The delight springs from a desire for justice that has been long awaited by the saints, martyrs, and, now by us in this Age.  Finally, the raging anger and wrath of God lays low all His enemies who throughout time have set themselves against Him, and caused suffering for His People.

One prevalent thought that emerged in the discussion voiced the notion that this Day of Wrath was in fact the Day of the Cross-the Crucifixion and Death of our Lord Jesus- the Day an unsuspecting Satan was conquered for all time and Eternity by the bloody sacrifice on Calvary.

“Then I saw the heavens opened, and there was a white horse; its rider was (called) “Faithful and True.” He judges and wages war in righteousness. His eyes were (like) a fiery flame, and on his head were many diadems. He had a name  inscribed that no one knows except himself. He wore a cloak that had been dipped in  blood, and his name was called the Word of God.” Rev. 19:11-13

The discussion voiced another light, “The One on the Horse is Jesus.” Chris, said, “Maybe that battle was fought and won.” This Mystery, still unfolding in the world and in the Church in Time is one of triumph and exaltation of the King of Kings who is at hand and enthroned in Heaven and in His Church.

Another thought reflected the idea of transformation, transformation through the sacraments, through Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Matrimony, Holy Orders.  “Burning anger is transformative, purifying.” We are transformed, become new creatures and are yet being fit for the Kingdom, here and yet to come, already but not yet, ”Yesterday, today and tomorrow.”

I image the Mystery of it in this way: it is as a block buster movie being made; when complete, the movie is presented as a whole, but in the process of becoming, it is made up of bits and pieces filmed at different times and different places, yet all part of the complete work and necessary to it.  We are being spliced into the triumphant victory of the Day of the Lord, so to speak, as each of us contributes her/his part.

Maranatha!

Research Confirms Rhythmic Cockatoo

LA times says  research confirms cockatoo  has rhythm.  Something  over 2 1/2 million people had already guessed, but it’s nice to know it’s official:

Wonder if they care about a dog with inflection and good diction?

The Anchoress is on the Move

Good things happening to good people and a great writer.  So you can better track her down here she is; same ole, same ole, in classy new digs.

The Anchoress: http://www.firstthings.com/theanchoress/

I’m having a problem reaching her for the moment, working on a dramatic entrance not doubt.

Right Brain? Left Brain?

This is old fun from the Daily Telegraph but just right for an easy going Sunday afternoon.

The Right Brain vs Left Brain test … do you see the dancer turning clockwise or anti-clockwise?

If clockwise, then you use more of the right side of the brain and vice versa.

I found out I’m bossy and controlling, spinning her in one direction and then the other (presumably by crunching numbers or humming tunes or simply by being whacky.)

LEFT BRAIN FUNCTIONS
uses logic
detail oriented
facts rule
words and language
present and past
math and science
can comprehend
knowing
acknowledges
order/pattern perception
knows object name
reality based
forms strategies
practical
safe

RIGHT BRAIN FUNCTIONS
uses feeling
“big picture” oriented
imagination rules
symbols and images
present and future
philosophy & religion
can “get it” (i.e. meaning)
believes
appreciates
spatial perception
knows object function
fantasy based
presents possibilities
impetuous
risk taking

The Music of the Manuscripts

Metropolitan Museum of Art – wonderful exhibition

More here

Foot Washing at Washington Park

It speaks for itself.

Happier Than the Blessed Mother?

From Story of a Soul by St. Therese of Lisieux:

Speaking of that Blessed Mother, I must tell you of one of my
simple ways. Sometimes I find myself saying to her: “Dearest
Mother, it seems to me that I am happier than you. I have you for my Mother, and you have no Blessed Virgin to love. . . . It is
true, you are the Mother of Jesus, but you have given Him to me; and He, from the Cross, has given you to be our Mother–thus we are richer than you! Long ago, in your humility, you wished to become the little handmaid of the Mother of God; and I–poor little creature–am not your handmaid but your child! You are the Mother of Jesus, and you are also _mine!”_

Making the Ordinary Holy

From Story of a Soul by St.Therese of Lisieux:

Questioned as to her method of sanctifying meals, she answered:

"In the refectory we have but one thing to do: perform a lowly
action with lofty thoughts. I confess that the sweetest
aspirations of love often come to me in the refectory. Sometimes I
am brought to a standstill by the thought that were Our Lord in my
place He would certainly partake of those same dishes which are
served to me. It is quite probable that during His lifetime He
tasted of similar food--He must have eaten bread and fruit.

"Here are my little rubrics:

"I imagine myself at Nazareth, in the house of the Holy Family.
If, for instance, I am served with salad, cold fish, wine, or
anything pungent in taste, I offer it to St. Joseph. To our
Blessed Lady I offer hot foods and ripe fruit, and to the Infant
Jesus our feast-day fare, especially rice and preserves. Lastly,
when I am served a wretched dinner I say cheerfully: 'To-day, my
little one, it is all for you!'"


Love's Little Way

For those of us who are small at heart, ill equipped for great undertakings, yet desiring to fulfill in perfection the Will of God in our little lives simply to please Him, take heart.  There is a Little Way.

From Story of a Soul by St. Theresa of Lisieux – Manuscript B, Chapter IX – MY VOCATION IS LOVE:

St. Theresa of Lisieux, “I feel the vocation of the WARRIOR, THE PRIEST, THE APOSTLE, THE DOCTOR, THE MARTYR.  finally I feel the need and the desire of carrying out the most heroic deeds for You, O Jesus. I feel within my  the courage of the crusader, the Papal Guard, and I would want to die on the field of battle in defense of the Church………….

At prayer these desires made me suffer a true martydom. I opened the Epistles of St. Paul to seek some relief. The 12th and 13th chapters of the First Epistle to the Corinthians fell before my eyes. I read, in the first, that not all can be apostles, prophets, and doctors, etc., that the Church is composed of different members, and that the eye cannot also be at the same time the hand.

The answer was clear, but it did not satisfy my desires, it did not give me peace…. Without being discouraged I continued my reading, and this phrase comforted me: “Earnestly desire the more perfect gifts. And I show you a still more excellent way” (1 Cor 12:31). And the Apostle explains how all gifts, even the most perfect, are nothing without Love… that charity is the excellent way that leads surely to God. At last I had found rest…. Considering the mystical Body of the Church, I had not recognized myself in any of the members described by St. Paul, or rather, I wanted to recognize myself in all… Charity gave me the key to my vocation. I understood that if the Church has a body composed of different members, the noblest and most necessary of all the members would not be lacking to her. I understood that the Church has a heart, and that this heart burns with Love. I understood that Love alone makes its members act, that if this Love were to be extinguished, the Apostles would no longer preach the Gospel, the Martyrs would refuse to shed their blood… I understood that Love embraces all vocations, that Love is all things, that it embraces all times and all places… in a word, that it is eternal!

Then in the excess of my delirious joy, I cried out: “O Jesus, my Love, at last I have found my vocation, my vocation is Love!… Yes, I have found my place in the Church, and it is you, O my God, who have given me this place… in the heart of the Church, my Mother, I will be Love!…. Thus I shall be all things: thus my dream shall be realized!!!”

I am a child… It is not riches or glory (not even the glory of Heaven) that this child asks for… No, she asks for Love. She knows but one desire: to love you, Jesus. Glorious deeds are forbidden her; she cannot preach the Gospel or shed her blood… But what does that matter, her brothers work in her place, and she, a little child, stays close to the throne of the King and Queen, and loves for her brothers who are in the combat… But how shall she show her love, since love proves itself by deeds? Well! the little child will strew flowers, she will embalm the royal throne with their fragrance, she will sing with a silver voice the canticle of Love.

Yes, my Beloved, I wish to spend my life thus… I have no other means of proving my love except by strewing flowers, that is to say, letting no little sacrifice pass, no look, no word–profiting by the littlest actions, and doing them out of love. I wish to suffer out of love and to rejoice out of love; thus I shall strew flowers before your throne. I shall not find one without scattering its petals before you… and in strewing my flowers I will sing (can one weep in doing so joyous an action?) I will sing, even if my roses must be gathered from among thorns; and the longer and sharper the thorns, the sweeter shall be my song.

Begin today with a desire and a prayer, looking not at yourself  but at the generous Heart of Jesus.

Do I hear an, “Amen” ?

The Dying of the Little Flower

From The Story of a Soul (L’Histoire d’une Ame):
The Autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux, by Therese Martin (of Lisieux)

At last dawned the eternal day. It was Thursday, September 30,
1897. In the morning, the sweet Victim, her eyes fixed on Our
Lady’s statue, spoke thus of her last night on earth: “Oh! with
what fervour I have prayed to her! . . . And yet it has been pure
agony, without a ray of consolation. . . . Earth’s air is failing
me: when shall I breathe the air of Heaven?”

For weeks she had been unable to raise herself in bed, but, at
half-past two in the afternoon, she sat up and exclaimed: “Dear
Mother, the chalice is full to overflowing! I could never have
believed that it was possible to suffer so intensely. . . . I can
only explain it by my extreme desire to save souls. . . .” And a
little while after: “Yes, all that I have written about my thirst
for suffering is really true! I do not regret having surrendered
myself to Love.”

She repeated these last words several times. A little later she
added: “Mother, prepare me to die well.” The good Mother Prioress
encouraged her with these words: “My child, you are quite ready to
appear before God, for you have always understood the virtue of
humility.” Then, in striking words, Therese bore witness to
herself:

“Yes, I feel it; my soul has ever sought the truth. . . . I have
understood humility of heart!”

. . . . . . .

At half-past four, her agony began–the agony of this “Victim of
Divine Love.” When the Community gathered round her, she thanked
them with the sweetest smile, and then, completely given over to
love and suffering, the Crucifix clasped in her failing hands, she
entered on the final combat. The sweat of death lay heavy on her
brow . . . she trembled . . . but, as a pilot, when close to
harbour, is not dismayed by the fury of the storm, so this soul,
strong in faith, saw close at hand the beacon-lights of Heaven,
and valiantly put forth every effort to reach the shore.

As the convent bells rang the evening Angelus, she fixed an
inexpressible look upon the statue of the Immaculate Virgin, the
Star of the Sea. Was it not the moment to repeat her beautiful
prayer:

“O thou who camest to smile on me in the morn of my life, come
once again and smile, Mother, for now it is eventide!”[15]

A few minutes after seven, turning to the Prioress, the poor
little Martyr asked: “Mother, is it not the agony? . . . am I not
going to die?” “Yes, my child, it is the agony, but Jesus perhaps
wills that it be prolonged for some hours.” In a sweet and
plaintive voice she replied: “Ah, very well then . . . very well
. . . I do not wish to suffer less!”

Then, looking at her crucifix:

“Oh! . . . I love Him! . . . My God, I . . . love . . . Thee!”

These were her last words. She had scarcely uttered them when, to
our great surprise, she sank down quite suddenly, her head
inclined a little to the right, in the attitude of the Virgin
Martyrs offering themselves to the sword; or rather, as a Victim
of Love, awaiting from the Divine Archer the fiery shaft, by which
she longs to die.

Suddenly she raised herself, as though called by a mysterious
voice; and opening her eyes, which shone with unutterable
happiness and peace, fixed her gaze a little above the statue of
Our Lady. Thus she remained for about the space of a _Credo,_ when
her blessed soul, now become the prey of the “Divine Eagle,” was
borne away to the heights of Heaven.

(From the Project Gutenberg Ebook)

Faith Walk – Hope Eternal

“We walk by faith and not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7

No one knows that better than Myah who’s been walking the walk with grace and joy.  Now she walks it with Faith, her beautiful babe in arms. Myah writes:

I was told that my baby was only alive because she was attached to me, but that she couldn’t survive on her own. The doctor said that I could continue the pregnancy safely, but that my baby would die shortly after being born. Or I could choose to terminate the pregnancy then, which would mean being induced at 20 weeks and letting my baby die without ever seeing or holding her (I don’t even want to know what they do with babies in this case). Well, to some people this would be a difficult decision, but it wasn’t for me. I knew there was nothing to gain by terminating the pregnancy and I already loved my daughter more than anyone else in the world. Even if she was unconscious like the doctors said and lived for only a few seconds or minutes –even if she was stillborn –it was worth it to me. And so we began our journey…

Pursuing Holiness writes:

Faith has confounded the medical community, helped her mother and other family members rely wholly on God, and she is the recipient of a very great love. And if those things are the extent of her success and achievement in her life, it will have been a life well-lived.

Best to read the whole story. The photos tell a beautiful tale of 32 days of love with more to follow.  Keep Faith and Myah at the top of your prayer list.

Glance of Heaven

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Virgin of Vladimir copyright J.Nelander

We are flesh and blood not angels.  We need to see, and touch and feel in-order to experience and learn.  The writers of Icons recognize that we need a bit of Heaven in the  here and now.

St. James Pray For Me gives some insight and a bit of history and tradition.

A Heavenly Bit of Alma, Nebraska

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So, if Alma is for you, check it out!