A Virgin’s Fear

Antonello de Messina, Vierge de l'Annonciation, 1475. Public domain, commons.wikimedia.org

The angel appeared and said “Do not be afraid…” Some heavenly being popped up in front of me, I’d need calming down too! These words were spoken to Zechariah in Luke 1:13; and a few months later to Mary, Luke 1:30. Let’s never mind about St. John the Baptist’s father.  Consider only Mary for a [Read More...]

Swooning Over Oxtail

Image from public domain, Wikimedia.org. Stillleben mit Deckelterrine, brauner Tonschale, Brot und Weinglas. Öl auf Leinwand, 18th century.

As a child, my first memory of a soup is Oxtail. Not so much for its flavor—though it is delicious—but for the adventure at my grandmother’s side. In late winter, after Christmas and before Lent, I would often spend a weekend at my maternal grandparents’ house. I delighted in the quietness and solitude that their [Read More...]

St. Joseph and a Prayer for our Priests

St. Joseph's Dream

Today we heard the story of St. Joseph’s faithfulness to follow the will of God. Let us offer a prayer to Saint Joseph for a Particular Priest: Saint Joseph, I present to you this day Father (N.), priest of Jesus Christ, and beg you to be to him advocate and defender, counselor and friend. Open [Read More...]

Do Not Snark the Poor

Image from public domain at PD4PIC.com

Christmas shopping and the Red Kettles bell ringers of the Salvation Army are calling us with a tinny jangle to help the poor. I nod my head and smile, walking by, not depositing even a penny. I have already given—to another group, at church or the office—earlier. I am annoyed by the once-a-year, in-your-face, give-to-ME-or-look-selfish-in-the-eyes-of-the-anonymous-crowd [Read More...]

Vocation of Women, Tuesday’s Prayer for Sisters and Nuns

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Blessed Mother Mary, You discerned in your heart and gave to God the fullness of yourself in love and faith. You did not know the demands your “yes” would place on you in the future as the mother of Jesus. You chose to walk trusting the will of our Holy Father. Look now on our [Read More...]

Chestnuts at Christmas, A Garden Catechism

Edible Sweet chestnuts or European chestnuts, Castanea sativa. Image by Clarita, morguefile.com

Those lovely, smooth, shiny-brown chestnuts we enjoy during the Christmas season are pretty rugged looking at the start. The American chestnut tree, Castanea dentata, is native to eastern North America, and nearly died out in the early 1900s from an imported blight. Its Latin name castanea is derived from the city Castanis in Asia Minor [Read More...]

The Most Beautiful Sentences in Literature

Image from a really great blog post on Buzzfeed, http://www.buzzfeed.com/jenniferschaffer/i-am-i-am-i-am

A lovely blog post by Jennife Schaff at Buzzfeed, a list of contributors best loved lines. A few of my favorites? 2. “In our village, folks say God crumbles up the old moon into stars.” —Alexander Solzhenitsyn, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich Suggested by Jasmin B., via Facebook 16. “And now that you [Read More...]

Thursday’s Prayer for Priests

Image by ardelfin on morguefile.com

  Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mother of vocations, multiply priestly vocations and fill the earth with religious houses which will be light and warmth for the world, safety in stormy nights. Beg your Son to send us many priests and religious. Guard and protect each of your precious priests according to your Divine Son’s will.  This [Read More...]

How to Shorten Your Stay in Purgatory

Image by Lucas Malta, morgefile.com

On gloomy winter days I often drive country lanes. This time of year several farms have Christmas decorations up and some even decorate the out-buildings. One such barnyard was filled with a gaggle of kids squealing and running towards an old oak tree. By the looks of it, hide-and-seek had not gone out of fashion [Read More...]

Tuesday’s Prayer for Sisters and Nuns

Miracle of Tepeyac (c1947) by Jorge González Camarena. Muralist's Art Collection of Carlos Slim Helu. Museo Soumaya, Mexico City.

On the feast day of St. Juan Diego this prayer to Our Lady of Guadalupe, found on EWTN, has been slightly tweaked as an intercession for our women religious. Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mystical Rose, make intercession for holy Church, protect the sovereign Pontiff, help all our Sisters and Nuns who invoke you in their necessities, [Read More...]


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