|Ho, ho, ho...Frosty? Really?|
Secular Santa Is
|I don't get it! What's so funny?|
Faith on the High Wire
We were ushered out of the room and into the perinatologist’s office who confirmed what the other lady had told us. She called it Trisomy 13.
I had been praying to St. Gianna Molla since finding out I was pregnant and had thought that if it was a girl we should call her Gianna.
It turns out that the brain is a veritable sponge for steroid hormones....
Whereas the subtle structural effects of naturally-occurring steroid hormones and sex differences in the brain have been extensively studied, few studies have examined the role of synthetic hormones on changes in the human brain. What happens, then, when the female brain gets a significant and artificial dose of steroid hormone, either progesterone, estrogen or both?...
It appears that the brain, that sensitive organ replete with steroid receptors, reacts to its hormonal milieu with startling structural modifications. ....women using hormonal contraceptives showed larger gray matter volumes in the prefrontal cortex, pre- and postcentral gyri, the parahippocampal and fusiform gyri and temporal regions, when compared to naturally cycling women. The brain works like a neural beehive; the proper coordinated functioning of groups of tasked neurons are important to successfully accomplish a variety of mental tasks -- even the sensory processing and motor coordination needed for something as simple as picking up a hot cup of coffee without scalding oneself. Again, we do not know whether this increased gray matter translates into better or worse performance, but there likely is little good about treating a woman's brain like a spongy accordion.
....a man who grows accustomed to the use of contraceptive methods may forget the reverence due to a woman, and, disregarding her physical and emotional equilibrium, reduce her to being a mere instrument for the satisfaction of his own desires, no longer considering her as his partner whom he should surround with care and affection.
-- Humanae Vitae II.17 (emphasis added)
A song of ascents. When the LORD restored the fortunes of Zion, then we thought we were dreaming.I know that, at least once a month, I need to be reminded of the great things the Lord has done for me and that the heavy lifting that we all do as wives and mothers will be shared in our stories of joys and sorrows.
Our mouths were filled with laughter; our tongues sang for joy. Then it was said among the nations, "The LORD had done great things for them."
The LORD has done great things for us; Oh, how happy we were!
Restore again our fortunes, LORD, like the dry stream beds of the Negeb.
Those who sow in tears will reap with cries of joy.
Those who go forth weeping, carrying sacks of seed,
Will return with cries of joy, carrying their bundled sheaves.
This morning, Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards sent an e-mail to supporters encouraging them to celebrate Mother’s Day by — how else? — giving money to Planned Parenthood:
Litany of St. Gabriel
Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us. Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of Heaven, Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit, Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, Have mercy on us.
Holy Mary , Queen of Angels, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel, glorious Archangel, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, strength of God, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, who stands before the throne of God, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, model of prayer, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, herald of the Incarnation, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, who revealed the glories of Mary, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, Prince of Heaven, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, ambassador of the Most High, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, guardian of the Immaculate Virgin, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, who foretold the greatness of Jesus, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, peace and light of souls, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, scourge of unbelievers, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, admirable teacher, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, strength of the just, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, protector of the faithful, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, first adorer of the Divine Word, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, defender of the Faith, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, zealous for the honor of Jesus Christ, pray for us.
St. Gabriel, whom the Scriptures praise as the Angel sent by God to Mary, the Virgin, pray for us.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
V. Pray for us, blessed Archangel Gabriel,
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Jesus Christ.
Let Us Pray: O blessed Archangel Gabriel, we beseech thee, intercede for us at the throne of Divine Mercy in our present necessities, that as thou didst announce to Mary the mystery of the Incarnation, so through thy prayers and patronage in Heaven we may obtain the benefits of the same, and sing the praise of God forever in the land of the living. Amen.
“God’s will will always be for the salvation of the individual involved.”
So I try every day now to pray for the salvation of the president, all members of Congress, and the American people. I cast my cares upon the Lord.
We are in a deeper battle here, which you well know . . . I also think in the end this all has to do with the salvation of souls, including the souls of our president and these politicians who deign to rule over the rest of us. I think we who believe must hold fast to Christ, the True Center, and bring as many along with us as possible.
Yes. How perfectly right. God’s will will always be for the salvation of the individual involved. And it follows that the salvation of the individual involved will lie in that individual’s conforming him/herself to the Word and Will of God.
Chew on that, for a while.
*While Isabel has not yet been cannonized, I share Dr. Carroll's hope that she will be 'St. Isabel' one fine day. Check out Daughters of Isabella for more information.
I invite you to take part in a day of prayer and fasting on Monday, March 15 for protecting the life, dignity, health and conscience rights of every human person in any legislation that Congress considers. I also invite Catholics to pray and fast for this intention beyond March 15.
In moments of concern and crisis, Catholic tradition through the centuries has unfailingly urged the faithful to turn to the spiritual aids of prayer and fasting in order to draw closer to our Lord and His will. Through these deliberate actions, we communicate a desire to avoid sin and unify ourselves with that which is right and good. I firmly believe that, working together while open to God’s wisdom, the citizens of our nation can respect the dignity of each human person both in law and in practice.
All I want is affirmation and love-bombs about every little thing I do -- Look, honey, I am presentable today! Look, I neatened up this corner! Look, we have dinner! Instead I get the smackdown from God Almighty: You're only doing what you are supposed to be doing -- don't be such a baby.And since this is something that I've been mulling over myself, I was very excited to see her go on to say....
And you know, the truth is that all those things are simply background for the real business of loving each other and getting to heaven.
I want to talk about a serious question that comes up, and its answer underlies the whole purpose of what we do, blog-wise, family-wise, life-wise...
It's this: Why should *I* have to do all this? Why is all this the woman's lot to preside over? Am I not good enough for the world to recognize my work with something tangible, like a paycheck? How can I explain my home to someone else? To myself? What about someone who isn't Christian?
....to answer the question in an orderly, satisfying way, you might want to do some reading....
Rooting the family in the liturgical year helps to produce lives which are God-centred and continues the formation and sanctification of the Catholic family that flows from the sacred liturgy. This in turn can then be more readily carried into one's adult life, whether as a priest, religious or as a layman, to be fostered yet further in ourselves and in others. Evidently, everyone has an important part to play in the new liturgical movement, but as it relates to the "domestic church," to bringing the liturgical life into the home, it seems to be the case that in most homes it is the mother who plans and organizes the special celebrations, foods, crafts, songs, stories and prayers, along with appropriate catechesis, for her family in accordance with the Church's liturgical calendar. This is why the Catholic mother's role can be understood as so important and vital for the new liturgical movement, for it is in the home that the formative seeds of the liturgical life can be planted and nurtured.
"If you knew the gift of God" (Jn 4:10), Jesus says to the Samaritan woman during one of those remarkable conversations which allow his great esteem for the dignity of women and for the vocation which enables them to share in his messianic mission.
The present reflections, now at an end, have sought to recognize, within the "gift of God," what he, as Creator and Redeemer, entrusts to women, to every woman. In the Spirit of Christ, in fact, women can discover the entire meaning of their femininity and thus be disposed to making a "sincere gift of self" to others, thereby finding themselves.
During the Marian Year the Church desires to give thanks to the Most Holy Trinity for the "mystery of woman" and for every woman-for that which constitutes the eternal measure of her feminine dignity, for the "great works of God," which throughout human history have been accomplished in and through her. After all, was it not in and through her that the greatest event in human history-the incarnation of God himself-was accomplished?
Therefore the Church gives thanks for each and every woman: for mothers, for sisters, for wives; for women consecrated to God in virginity; for women dedicated to the many human beings who await the gratuitous love of another person; for women who watch over the human persons in the family, which is the fundamental sign of the human community; for women who work professionally, and who at times are burdened by a great social responsibility; for "perfect" women and for "weak" women-for all women as they have come forth from the heart of God in all the beauty and richness of their femininity; as they have been embraced by his eternal love; as, together with men, they are pilgrims on this earth, which is the temporal "homeland" of all people and is transformed sometimes into a "valley of tears"; as they assume, together with men, a common responsibility for the destiny of humanity according to daily necessities and according to that definitive destiny which the human family has in God himself, in the bosom of the ineffable Trinity.
The Church gives thanks for all the manifestations of the feminine "genius" which have appeared in the course of history, in the midst of all peoples and nations, she gives thanks for all the charisms which the Holy Spirit distributes to women in the history of the People of God, for all the victories which she owes to their faith, hope and charity: she gives thanks for all the fruits of feminine holiness.
The Church asks at the same time that these invaluable "manifestations of the Spirit" (cf. 1 Cor 12:4ff.), which with great generosity are poured forth upon the "daughters" of the eternal Jerusalem, may be attentively recognized and appreciated so that they may return for the common good of the Church and of humanity, especially in our times. Meditating on the biblical mystery of the "woman," the Church prays that in this mystery all women may discover themselves and their "supreme vocation."
May Mary, who "is a model of the Church in the matter of faith, charity, and perfect union with Christ," (63) obtain for all of us this same race," in the Year which we have dedicated to her as we approach the third millennium from the coming of Christ.
With these sentiments, I impart the Apostolic Blessing to all the faithful, and in a special way to women, my sisters in Christ. (MD, 31)