Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Rick Perry's Vision

This is an interesting, short video from Governor Rick Perry, R-Texas, taken from his speech at the CPAC convention. It is interesting and something it would hurt no one to hear.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Brief Hiatus

I am sure the hiatus has not been brief to those who follow, but I have been finishing my Political Science degree through Kaplan University. The Good News: I have made the Deans List every term I have studied. Woot! Validation that I am not a dolt... well, I always knew I was not, but it is so easy to fall into negative thinking. So, I will accept my supporters encouragement that I am no stooge and continue to believe that we can make this world the better place we all desire!

My project in a much beloved class, Composition II, will be putting all we have learned in Comp I into practical action in our chosen professions or way to express our chosen vocations with respect to our studies. I feel that Poly Sci is perfect for "rebels" like me who desire to preserve Natural Law, the Sacrament of Marriage and the support of the contemporary family, regardless of its shape. Don't get me wrong, I AM VERY PRO NATURAL LAW AND WILL DO ALL I CAN TO ENCOURAGE IT FOR THE PROTECTION OF CHILDREN, THE INNOCENTS. THOSE IN NEED OF ALL OF OUR SUPPORT IN THIS CULTURE OF DEATH.

Pray for Sr Kateri as she professes her vows of the evangelical counsels and seals her commitment to the betterment of all who desire!

For my class project, we will be creating our website to ask the Holy Spirit to bring us more vocations. Please all, OSMM or supporters or just friends, pray for us. I do believe our website is of the utmost importance. GOD BLESS YOU ALL.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Guest Blog January

The Oblate Sisters of St Mary Magdalene and The Oblate Brothers of St Andre will be honoring us this year with their contributions, expressing how they live the charism of OSMM or OBA in their own Milieu. January is the month for Sr. Kateri to share. Pray for her in thanksgiving for this shared blessing.

Ballistic boors, berated boys and badly behaved barriers

There’s no telling how long they had been there when I came around the corner. I was pretty frazzled myself as I was running late to my appointment because I hadn’t been alert to the train schedule changes due to the now far-too-frequent track work but I knew I had to do something. I stayed back a moment to assess the situation. A young boy, about seven years old, was on one side of the mechanical gate and his father was on the other. The boy was frantic as his father literally screamed and cursed at him to insert his ticket correctly and join him so they could resume their journey. The poor boy kept trying to get the ticket reader to accept his little red piece of paper, but the machine was being persnickety and refused to cooperate no matter how desperate the boy or his father was. The ears for which the boy’s pain-filled pleas of, “I’m trying, Daddy, I’m trying!” were intended were fully deaf to them; apparently, I was the only one who was affected by his disturbing distress. By now, the father was bellowing curse words and yelling, “You are definitely your mother’s son” while waving his arms like a madman as though that would somehow intimidate the machine into simply allowing the child through. I thought those words would be my cue. I planned to walk up and exclaim, “And I’m sure his mother thinks he’s a handsome son indeed” then trying to calm the ballistic father down before the situation got even more out of hand than it was already. Such a compliment wouldn’t be much of a stretch. He was a cute little fellow indeed, well groomed and neatly tucked into a crisp clean coat, hopefully by someone very unlike the man now abusing him. I wanted to rush up and wrap my arms around him to insulate him from the cold, vicious words that stung our combined ears, but I knew that might make the situation worse for him after I left, so another strategy was needed to protect him from the horrible storm taking place in the train station on that beautiful, sunny day.

I considered using the gate furthest from the malignant man to get to the other side of the gates then trying to help the boy insert his ticket, but I worried that the ticket might have been rendered useless from his repeated attempts to force it into the tiny slot. My sole fellow train traveler had just used that furthest portal to conveniently escape the situation, quickly slipping out the door as soon as he obtained access to the other side rather than taking a few seconds to intervene from the safety of the other side of the gates. Now, I was left with the raging maniac, who continued to get more and more worked up and abusive despite my presence as a witness to his unacceptable behavior. By now, he was calling his son horribly hurtful names while striking the ticket mechanism repeatedly. Oddly enough, I was not the only witness to this deranged behavior. Beside the father stood another man-- perhaps a friend or relative of the father’s, maybe even the boy’s uncle. He did not actively participate in the abuse, but his silence echoed through the train station, a speechless endorsement of the father’s damaging actions. I’m surprised the man didn’t suggest that one of them take the boy’s ticket and try to insert it themselves given that they could reach the ticket reader over the gate if they tried. Instead, the father seemed to prefer terrorizing the trembling boy (and machine) into submission.

I finally built up the courage to step into the fray and approached the gate where the maligning man was continuing to scream at and scare his scarred son. I took out my monthly train pass and tapped it on the gate release mechanism, which promptly opened the gate. The moment was actually somewhat bittersweet—though the gate had been the cause of great emotional abuse, it may have actually served to protect the boy from physical abuse. Now that protective barrier had vanished and though he had been rather desperate to get through, the boy understandably paused, perhaps in surprise because he hadn’t inserted his ticket and yet the previously unyielding gate had somehow magically parted. I then motioned to him to enter, gently coaxing, “Come on through.” That was all he needed to hear-- he rushed through to where his father had demanded him to be. I then slid to the other side before the gate closed, locking me in the station. I naively expected the abuse to stop once the boy was no longer on the other side of the gate that had so aggravated his father, but the tyrant continued to badger the boy about his inability to make the gate open on his own and his other perceived faults. I then told the father that sometimes tickets fail to function due to faulty magnetic strips and that his son’s ticket probably fell into that category. I also told them to make sure the boy exited the gate with one of them when they got where they were going because he had entered on my pass so his ticket would not work at their destination. I hoped that would end the trouble as now he had a plausible explanation for the troublesome ticket not working. But, as I walked away, I heard the boy’s abuse continue, as it had likely done long before the unyielding gate had ever served as a pretext for his father’s misplaced rage. I do not know his name, but I shall pray for that little tussled blond boy, wrapping him up in the warmth of the Lord’s love where his own father’s is sometimes absent. Wherever you are, little one, someone will remember you and children like you in prayer. …

O Jesus, I pray that victims of abuse and mistreatment may be healed by your infinite goodness and compassion to the afflicted. Restore their mental and physical and spiritual health, and renew their strength and their courage so that they may lead full lives serving you on earth. I pray that all victims of crime and family abuse may be bathed in the healing light of your infinite love, especially vulnerable children who cannot protect themselves from their abusers or understand why they are being targeted.

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Apple Argument

This essay first appeared in the December 2000 issue of Crisis Magazine. Peter Kreeft supplies us with an argument against abortion that even the hardest, pro-abortion heart will have a difficult time defending.


In addition, here is a reply to the latest "Why I Hate Religion, But I Love Jesus" video that went viral. Not bad... actually, VERY GOOD.


It's nice to blog when others present your thoughts so well :)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Blessed Art Thou among Women

Two of the people in my world (well, that I know. One is my sister who is IN my world & the other is my ex husband whom I KNOW) caused me to meditate on a subject that is near and dear to my heart, as well as controversial to some Christians. That is the Church's teaching on The Holy Mother and her role in our salvation. The former is starting RCIA this fall, while the latter believes in Catholic teaching and is also exploring conversion.

My sister admitted that she is having a difficult time with "Mary" and I remember my dear, African Methodist Episcopal mother saying that, "...Mary is just a woman like you and I". That satisfied my sister, but I always felt that it just couldn't be true. I knew that I was not worthy of bearing the Infant Christ and I also knew that she hadn't given birth to Him (I am in part evidence to that fact). Maybe it's providence, or maybe it is because I was born on the day the Church celebrates her immaculate birth. And while my father, in his country raised mentality, God love him, wanted to give me the middle name "May".  My mother in her east coast good taste changed it to "Marie". Early into my middle ages, I developed a deep love for St. Marie Euphrasia and her Eudist charism. Providence?

It was very easy for me to come to give my heart to her Immaculate one.  There are other times in my life where I clearly see her as my spiritual director, as many of us do. But in a nut shell, I just believe. Unfortunately, not living a childhood having that devotion nurtured, I am not always the best Marian apologist, but I do try. I have spoken of Genesis 1:15. I also pointed to her Old Testament prophesy as she is the human Arc of the Covenant. All this to no avail. I guess I need to brush up on my Scott Hahn.

Then, a couple of weeks ago, my ex had the opportunity to watch Mother Angelica and her sisters pray the Rosary. He said that what he kept hearing was the part of the prayer where it says, "Blessed art thou among women" and his mind focused on it in meditation. He said that now, he understood my devotion, moreover he saw that he needed to look at the way he treats all women. If she is a role model for Christian womanhood, he is realizing the conscious effort he needs to make and treat not just her with respect, but all women. I noticed a rare moment of insight and clarity, that I normally don't pick up with this individual. I don't mean to lack charity, but it is true.

So, I took that thought to its next logical conclusion. Christ is our Brother, because God is His and Our Father. So Mary, the mother of God, that makes God her Divine Spouse. Right there she at the very least deserves respect, at a minimum. But then, I also remembered a conversation with a friend. She was talking about a conversation with a young man who happened to be Jewish, just like Mary. In ancient Hebrew law, kingship was passed on through the mother, the only one to have the king's ear. But that was the "aha" piece of fact. That was when this friend disclosed another "factoid": Jewish men must pray and observe Jewish prayer and worship tradition everyday, not just on the Sabbath. Women, on the other hand, do not. That isn't to say that mothers aren't still responsible for passing the faith on to the next generation, nor that they aren't responsible for observing Jewish laws. The reason for this "dispensation" is that women are given the gift, the honor of actually bearing children. Therefore, she deserves a special place in people's heart. There, now we can say it, "AHA!!!"

Mary is not a role model of a "submissive, quiet woman" like old time feminists used to say. Not at all. Rather (or better) her place in the order of things makes her motherhood, being the mother of God's Only Begotten Son, is what gives her a natural place of importance in Christianity. No, you aren't obligated to pray to her or ask for her prayers, but she is 100% about bringing us to Her Divine Son. He is the most important person in our faith. She delivers him to us daily. She isn't offended if one doesn't wish to ask for her assistance. No, because Jesus is the reason we have hope. Jesus is the role model for all of humanity. Jesus is Love.

It's that simple.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Life in this World Wide Web

Who says no good comes from cyberspace? Everyday, we read and hear the stories. A young man has taken his life after being bullied online on social networks. Nigerian fraud is so prolific, we make jokes about it. And, then there are the people who are murdered and the victims were unlucky enough to fall into a trap set in the classifieds. When I think over the almost 15 years I have been in the cyber world, I believe I have been truly blessed. Yes, there is so much negativity to be found there, but that is because there is evil in the world. If you seek the devil, you will find him no matter where you roam. But if it's God you seek, you will find him there in abundance.

I have friends, long time friends, that I have met on Yahoo! email groups. I've received support to get through my illness and my daughters' no less from these friends, in some ways more, than I gathered from people I see face to face on a regular basis. Most of the encouragement I have gleaned from online relationships has been not only just what I needed, it has kept feeding fuel to the fire that is my love for Jesus. I wouldn't be many of the things I am if not for "this machine". Media has always been the driving force shaping society. Ancient peoples painted and marked walls of their caves. God blazed the Ten Commandments on stone tablets. The Vatican Library contains volumes of ancient writings, original writings from King Henry VIII, writing love letters to Ann Boleyn. Villages had the town crier, then postal networks, books and newspapers. Now, we have Scott Pelley or Katie Couric. I know my grown daughters still believe that I was alive when Abraham Lincoln was president, but they take lightly the fact that when I was a little girl, there wasn't a TV in every home. That is just inconceivable in their minds. I do remember having many a teacher preach against the evils of television. Even though it connected the world in a way that people couldn't yet grasp, the same naysayers who warned the world about Satan invading homes via the tube have offspring, warning us of the same evils on the net.

I understand their misgivings, I really do. I am equally so repulsed by the deviant behaviors that seem to slither through the digital device that gives me this forum. Still, seek and you shall find. It has served as the alarm for me to minister to the world who is loosing its crown jewel: Life. The family is suffering. The vocation of marriage is suffering. Children, unborn and birthed, are suffering. Everything that has made human life beautiful is being destroyed on a global scale and bad times seem to be coming a warp speed. So much strife, so much malevolent behavior paving the road to perdition.

Then, I find (on Facebook, the ubiquitous social network) this website. It is simple, but absolutely beautiful IN its simplicity. I have spent hours penning the facts about the charism of the Oblate Sisters of Mary Magdalene, and the creators of this page give few words and a few images to say it quite completely. And sweetly:

Sunday, August 28, 2011

It's All About Love

Yes, the title of this blog is cliche, but that doesn't make it any less true. We all believe we have the same definition of the word "Love", it means different things to all of us & it's the same for all of us. Those who don't understand it are doomed to a life of unhappiness. From the outside, they might be people we envy, but inside, they're dying slowly. Something so common to being human can be misunderstood & allusive. Sadly, that isn't cliche.

The same thing is true about faith & religious life. I had a conversation with someone who proclaimed herself an "Agnostic", but it leaned towards Atheism. She once said to me that,"...just because I am spiritual doesn't mean I believe in some old man with a long white beard sitting on a chair high above the clouds." I told her that I didn't believe in that either. Then I tried to explain that God is Love, something that just didn't register. I pray that she will come to the reality of "Love" in her lifetime.

Then, there are those whose only idea of religious life is someone who lives in a community, has daily regimented prayer lives & while they may not wear a habit, they just have bad taste in bland clothing. I remember a priest telling me that he has a sister who lives consecrated life in community. He said that her mentor or superior was "all over her every move". They just don't have any other conception of the idea of living the consecrated life in the secular milieu. How can you possibly educate someone about a charism without having constant watch over their every waking moment?First of all, I think they under estimate the power of modern technology. Most people have unlimited, low cost long distance calling. It's not an insurmountable feat to coordinate schedules. You have basic earmarks to your expression of living the way of life a charism, but the horarium is a flexible one. It is almost as simple as weaving it into your everyday way of life. Fixing a meal for your elderly parent is a prayer of love. Going to a child's parent/teacher conference is a gesture of love and a prayer. To live as a religious secularly is to make things that seem mundane something of a greater purpose, an act of love.

Tonight is a perfect example. My 19 year old is sifting through her wardrobe to donate what she no longer wears to charity. She doesn't believe in giving away anything substandard. She is laundering those items along with her clothes she wears now. She is tired & sleeping, so I went into the laundry room & folded everything. It reminded me of how I would come home at her age, telling my mother that if she would wake me in the morning, I would get up & do my laundry. But when I awoke the next day, usually around 11am, I would find all my clothes clean & neatly folded in the laundry room. I never thanked her for that, as much as I appreciated it & adored her for it. Monique won't thank me tonight either, but I know that when she is old enough, she will look back on what I did with fondness & love. My prayer will be heard. That is love.

Just because something doesn't fit into our traditional view, doesn't take away its validity. Living as a religious is making your very existence a prayer. The same can be achieved in one's own home amid other homes. I know I always come back to this, but rather than looking for self gratification & living the "social life" you believe you should or should have had while young, but feel fettered by young children, CONSECRATE single parenting. You have an entire life to live and no greater garden can be planted than raising God's children. I realize it's not easy. I also acknowledge societal pressures that tell people they aren't whole without a significant other in your bed each night. By the time we realize that isn't true, it's too late. One of the problems with our society is our inability to work for the long term benefit & the greater good. I pray that I model being a good single mother. Before I decided I wanted to live religious life, I realized that my children were the most important charge that I had at that time. Rachel was the product of marriage that ended in 1989, but I chose to adopt Monique as a single person in 1996, she was five then. I have a cousin who once told me I live in a high stress household... that tickles me. Maybe it's true, but I wouldn't change a thing. Every time my grown daughters say grace before a meal, when they thank God for their successes or achievements & every time they hear an emergency siren, they cross themselves & say a Hail Mary, I know that my prayers are being heard.