Thursday, February 11, 2016

LENT - LENDING A HELPING HAND

Lent is indeed how God draws us home, as individuals.
But, it is also a very communal journey. We never journey alone, no matter how “lonely” we may feel. We are always journeying together. If we can experience our journey in communion with others, it makes it so much clearer that we are on a journey together.

When I can share my experience with even one other close friend, or with my regular Parish community, I can enjoy and share the support and environment that allows grace to flourish.

Let us pray for each other on this journey, especially those who need and desire a change of heart on this pilgrimage to Easter joy.


Wednesday, February 10, 2016

LENT - DO NOT WASTE IT

10 tips for making the Lenten season more meaningful 

Slow Down - Set aside 10 minutes a day for silent prayer or meditation. It will revitalize your body and your spirit.

Read a good book - You could choose the life of a saint, a spiritual how-to, an inspirational book or one of the pope’s new books.

Be kind - Go out of your way to do something nice for someone else every day.

Get involved - Attend a Lenten lecture or spiritual program.

Volunteer at your parish - Whether it’s the parish fish fry, cleaning the church or helping with the food drive, it will give you a chance to help others.

Reach out - Invite an inactive Catholic to come with you to receive ashes on Ash Wednesday.

Pray - Especially for people you don’t like and for people who don’t like you.

Tune out - Turn off the television and spend quality time talking with family members or friends.

Clean out closets - Donate gently used items to the St. Vincent de Paul Society.

Pick one mission and decide how you can help by sending money, clothing or supplies.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

EVE OF ASH WEDNESDAY

A Momentary Pause before Ash Wednesday



"In the ritual of Ash Wednesday, which begins the Lenten journey, we receive a cross-shaped smudge on our forehead. The ashen sign reminds us of what we are fashioned from, and to what we will return. It initiates and impels us into the wilderness where we remember what is most essential to us. It is a dark, stark mark. 

At the heart of this season, however, is a call to remember that something gleams among the ashes. We do not cling to the ashes for the sake of ashes, nor to the wilderness, nor to the outer form of whatever practice God gives us. Lent beckons us to cling to the one who dwells within and beneath and beyond every ritual and practice and form: Christ our Light, who desires us to receive his hospitality even—and perhaps especially—among ashes...

...What habits are you shaping your life around? Which of your habits are instinctual, and which are intentional? What do you feel drawn to practice in the coming season? As you engage in that practice, what will help you stay focused on the purpose of the practice, so that it will remain a doorway to God, rather than becoming a wall?

Monday, February 8, 2016

LENT - NEW PATTERNS



Something all of us can do is commit ourselves to being more reflective during Lent. It just means that I’m going to make a point of being more observant, more aware of what I’m experiencing - paying more attention to what is “automatic” behaviour. And, I then start paying attention to my desires. 

We have all kinds of desires. During Lent, I can reflect upon the desires I currently have and which of them need to be purified, which may need to be abandoned, and which are wonderful desires that are there, but I haven’t acted upon them. Naming our deepest desires will guide the choices we make to establish new patterns for Lent.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

LENT is approaching - A CHANGE OF HEART


Our Lord is calling us to a “change of heart.” And, we know from experience, that nothing will change, unless we change our patterns. To expect different results is insanity.
So, what needs changing?
We start to come to know that by asking for help. “Lord, help me to know what needs changing.” It is often said, “Be careful about what you ask for.” This is one of those requests that God must surely want to answer.
Then, we have to listen. With a little bit of reflection, most of us will just begin to “name” things that make up our ordinary habits and ways of being who we are, that we aren’t very proud of. Things we do and things we never get around to doing. 

Friday, February 5, 2016

TRUST IN THE LORD

Has anyone hoped in the Lord and been disappointed?….Sir 2:20

REFLECTION - Those who trust in Jesus are as simple as children. They cling to His garments and in every difficulty have recourse to him. Filled with trust they exclaim: ‘Help me Lord Jesus to overcome this enemy and this obstacle. You alone can help me and I am sure that You want to do so.’ “……….St Francis de Sales

Thursday, February 4, 2016

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO HAVE GOD ON YOUR SIDE?

To have God on our side doesn't mean sailing on a boat with no storms,
it means having a boat that no storm can sink!"

The Secret
One day, one friend asked another,
 ' How is it that you are always so happy?
You have so much energy,
And you never seem to get down.. ' 
With her eyes smiling, she said, I know the Secret! '
' What secret is that? '
To which she replied,
I'll tell you all about it,
But you have to promise to
Share the Secret with others. ' 

' The Secret is this: I have learned there is little I can do
In my life that will make me truly happy
I must depend on God to show
me happiness.
When a need arises in my life,I have to trust God that He will supply
what I need when I need it
According to HIS riches and in HIS time.
I have learned most of the time
I don ' t need half of what I think I do.
He has never let me down.
Since I learned that ' Secret ' , I am happy.'The questioner ' s first thought was,' That's too simple! '
But upon reflecting over her own life
She recalled how she thought a bigger house
Would make her happy, but it didn't!
She thought a better paying job
Would make her happy, but it hadn't.
When did she realize her greatest happiness?
appreciating  whatever   she  has 
being a friend, eating pizza or reading a story,
A simple gift from God. 
Now you know it too! We can't depend on others to make us happy.
Only GOD in His infinite wisdom can do that.
Trust HIM!
And now I pass the Secret on to you!
So once you get it, what will you do?