True Rejoicing

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.
Philippians 4:5
My body is broken from my battle with cancer.  I battle numerous infections, decreased mobility, sleepless nights. I am on oxygen as my lungs are weak. There are days when I have no strength to move and must resign myself to the bed. I am unable to do anything and I ask myself how can I give all to the Lord when I have so little to give. I recall the words of Jesus to St. Faustina and I entrust myself completely to His will by praying”Not as I want , but according to your will, O God let it be done unto me.”  It is in this moment of brokenness that I can give the Lord all. And this fills my soul with joy. My broken body and aching heart rejoices in the Lord. This is my gift to the infant Jesus. There are times in our lives when all we can give to Jesus are the broken pieces of our lives and it is in these moments of surrender that we can exclaim with St Paul: I can do all things in Him who strengthens me.
Dear Infant Jesus I come before your manager in Bethlehem help us to remember that real worth is not so much found in activity but in the silent surrender of our will to yours. We pray for the gift of perseverance to endure all things for the glory of your name. Jesus, Mary and Joseph make our homes another Nazareth where peace and love reign. Blessed Mother be a Mother to our children when  illness prevents me. Wrap them in the Mantle of your love. Help us to always remember the great dignity we have as mothers and illness can never take that away.
Ponder in your heart how much you are loved and the life you live is one of joy to God. Do Not be Afraid. let go of all anxiety and Trust in the Infant Jesus to heal you.
Let your prayer be one of peace. Listen to some Advent or Christmas songs and sit in silence before the Christmas tree and manger, hold the infant Jesus next to your heart and let love do as love wants.

“We are able to go through the most terrible places fearlessly, because Jesus in us will never deceive us; Jesus in us is our love, our strength, our joy and our compassion”
Saint Teresa of Calcutta

anticipating-the-advent


 

The Cross Is Love

Dear Jesus I place myself at the foot of the cross,  standing with your mother who is now my mother for in your suffering you gave her to us.   Oh what love you bestowed upon us in giving us your mother.  Thank you Jesus, you know how I weak I am, so at baptism She became the Mother of my life never to leave my side.
I compassionate you in your suffering my Jesus, oh how I wish I could do more,  give you more.  How I long to share in your bitter sorrow,  and yet you speak silently in my soul saying  ” Your desire means more to me than the action.”  Jesus you are so merciful I do not deserve the gift you have called me to accept.  The gift of sharing your cross and yet you placed the cross ever so gently upon my shoulders.  I remember that day in February 5 yrs ago, it was lent and I heard your voice calling me to follow you.

Dear Jesus how I trembled in fear when I heard the word cancer.  I said in my anxiety:  Why Lord why this, you know this mother’s heart and I cannot bear the thought of leaving my children. They are so young,  they need me,  who will take care of them? this cancer is rare and my chances of surviving are not good.”   At that moment your passion and death became food for my soul,  my prayer, my meditation . It was on the cross where you showed me where true love is to be found,  in the emptying of myself of all that was not of God,  of dying to self,  of seeing myself for who I really am,  of receiving your grace and realizing I cannot do anything without you.  You called me to trust in you.  Oh the graces you bestow on all your children who open their hearts and souls to your merciful grace.  It consumes all fear and unites our souls forever in love.  I finally came to understand that you are not distant from us when we suffer,  you are with us in our suffering.  You shed tears with us,  you hold us close to your Sacred Heart when everything seems lost,  you enter into our pain giving weak souls courage to go on.  You show us that battle is not lost when we fatigue overwhelms us.  Your love becomes a consuming fire .A fire that consumes our sins, makes our souls long for you,  a desire to know you more, to love you to the point of death.  How good you are Jesus!   You first took upon yourself all the sufferings that mankind would have to endure and more so that we would never be alone in our sufferings.  We can now say Jesus knows,  Jesus is with me,  I will never be alone.  Jesus is within me.  Your love did not stop there.  You wanted to give us more, so you give yourself to us daily in the Holy Eucharist,  You remain in every tabernacle in every church until the end of time waiting for us to come to you where you ease all pain and wipe away all tears.  Where would we be without the Sacraments of the Church?  I know I could not go on, my soul would die.  We would not know love.  Without the gift of your mother, how could I ever be a mother.
You have given me more than I could ever hope to ask for.  I know now Jesus, that all that really matters is Love.  Only Love makes one able to say “yes’  to the cross.  Love picks us up after every fall. Love nails us to the cross.   Love is all, it is everything.  The Cross and Love are inseparable.  I would not change the course of my life for anything. I have touched love and there is no greater joy!Jesus meets Mary (550x307) (2) (550x307)

Front Row with Pope Francis

   Unity among Christians is a  gift from God. Christians must pray for it.
Pope Francis begins His weekly audience with a call to Unity among all Christians. He states: ” We affirm that the Church is one and she is holy. Holy since she is founded by Jesus Christ, enlivened by his Holy Spirit, and filled with His love and salvation.
While we, the members of the Church are sinners, the unity and holiness of the Church arise from God and call us to daily conversion.”  All Christians are children of God and united to God we are all part of One family. As Christians we are not isolated, but are members of a unique Body the Mystical Body of Christ. “So we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of of another.” This is Christ’s priestly prayer, that all may be one.

Pope Francis goes on to say: “Unfortunately, we know well the sins against unity-jealousy-envy-antipathy- which come about when we place ourselves at the center and which occur even in our parish communities.” What then we ask ourselves is needed to stop this anger and envy all the war we see in the world and in families and yes so very sadly in the church our Holy Mother on earth, Oh how Jesus weeps. What can we do? Jesus tells us in the Gospel of John, “A new commandment I give to you that you love another: even as I have loved you, that you also love another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”( John 13: 34-35.)( CCC.1822-29.) How did Jesus show His love. Look at the Cross. He gave His life for us. On the cross as he hung in pain he cried out to His Father, “Father forgive them they know not what they do.” And with His Blessed Mother standing beneath the cross she looked to her son as he was dying and she silently gave her “Fiat” again. In this is love and unity. We must die to self in order to love our neighbors with the Heart of Christ. The church has been compared to Christ’s tunic which was without seam, woven from top to bottom,( John 19:23.)  ” The Church  should not be divided because it also is without seams.” St. Augustine.”

We must all pray for unity for the whole church. That with obedience and promptness we obey our Holy Father Pope Francis and all the bishops in communion with him. If we do this we may fall, but we our on the right path. We may suffer, but we will suffer in union with one another, we may feel the pain of poverty but, as Christians we give without counting the cost.We May not always like or agree with the teachings of the church, but we all pray in one voice: ” Open our eyes Lord to see the truth. Open our hearts Lord so we can hear your silent whisper that says; ” Take up your cross and follow me.” Give to me the courage and the gifts of the Holy Spirit to defend in all places Your truth. To live according to your Holy will, whatever it may take from me.  To stand for the sanctity and dignity of all human life created in your Image and likeness. Help us respond to your call to pray without ceasing for all those persecuted for their faith throughout the world. To refrain from gossip and speech that wounds another, in this Jesus we remain united with our Holy Mother the Catholic Church and she will lead us home.

” Bear ye one another’s burdens and so fulfill the will of Christ.”( Galatians 6:2) ( CCC 1965-70)

Let us call upon our Blessed Mother, the Mother of Unity. ” You who are the first handmaid of the unity of Christ’s Body,
help us, help all the faithful who feel so keenly the tragedy of historical divisions of Christianity, to seek persistently the path to the perfect unity of the Body of Christ through unreserved fidelity to the Spirit of truth and love. Pope Saint John Paull II.

Let us all stand with Mary our Mother at the foot of the cross and say in unison “Thy will be done Lord, not mine.”

A Mother’s Prayer With Cancer

        Jesus I Trust in You!

Jesus I Trust that You will provide for my children, no matter what mysterious path (stomach cancer) You have chosen for me. You watch over the lilies of the field and the sparrows. But my children, for whom You shed Your Most Precious Blood, are worth more than all the lilies and the sparrows. So I place my Life and family in Your Divine Hands.
Queen of My Heart, you know this mother’s heart so well and all the hopes and dreams for my family. I consecrated my family to you as I began this walk. Along the way I have felt the pain of cancer that is slowly trying to take my life, and oh the pain I bear in my body. That does not compare to the Pain I bear in this mothers heart. You know the pain and you hold your daughter as she cries and Jesus meets Mary (550x307) (2) (550x307)with the breath of your love, you promise me that through the Death and Resurrection of your son~All things will be made new. Jesus I Trust in You~

The Beautiful Heart of Our Mother

On October 31, 1942, Pope Pius Xll consecrated the Church and the entire world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Two years later, on May 4, 1944, the same Pope instituted the Feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. In his Encyclical on the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Pope Pius stated:     In order that favors may flow in greater abundance on all Christians, even on the whole human race, from devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, let the faithful see to it that this devotion, that of the Immaculate Heart of the Mother of God is closely joined..It is, then, entirely fitting that the Christian people, after they have paid their debt of honor to the most loving Heart of Jesus, should also offer to the most loving heart of their heavenly Mother the corresponding acts of piety, affection, gratitude, and expiation.   Taken from “True Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, by Father Robert J. FoxTrnava -  Heart of Virgin Mary paint in Jeusits church

Come Holy Spirit, Grant me the Spirit of Piety,

michelangelos-pieta-zblizenie“That I may find the service of God sweet and amiable”
Service to God simply means to submit to Gods will for you at all times. That sounds easy enough you may be  thinking, but is it?  As a mother of seven children fulfilling Gods will is hard work and it is made more difficult if I am lacking the Gift of Piety. What does piety mean and why is it one of the Gifts of the Holy Spirit?
Pope Francis tells us that the gift of piety comes from within. It is a relation lived with the heart: it is a friendship with God, given us by Jesus; a friendship that changes our lives and fills us with enthusiasm and joy.
During the last four years I have been fighting a rare form of cancer. This walk with cancer has deepened my prayer life. My life, united with Jesus has made me more aware that my life is completely in the hands of my Loving Father in heaven. That nothing happens to me without His consent. I now know that without God I am nothing. Through the sacrament of baptism we become His children and He is our father. As a child loves his father we too love God and this love for God impels us to please Him in all things. For me that is to

imagesfulfill my vocation as wife and mother as perfectly as I can. When  we allow our souls to be guided by the Spirit of Piety we are enabled to promptly and with ease to fulfill our daily obligations.For example, when I have to get up in the middle of the night with my child I can do so with joy and love  and offer up to Jesus the loss of sleep for the salvation of souls. The gift of piety aids all those who battle  illness, it helps us to be more kind and to turn to prayer when we are scared or discouraged. Piety shows forth in all our actions. It speaks to the world that we are Christians.  It helps us treat others who may irritate us,with kindness or a smile. Why is this. Love. When piety touches love it activates the virtues  and we begin to live for Jesus with joy and gratitude, we are saints in the making.
The Blessed Mother models piety as she holds her Son, her Baby, Her God on her lap after He was taken down from the cross.           As one gazes on the “Pieta” you see a Mother  filled with sorrow as she holds her son. She is filled with sorrow but not overcome by sorrow. Her heart is breaking and  tears fall but she is in control of all her emotions as always. Piety was perfected in the Blessed Mother because she gave her “Fiat” to God. That one word was uttered out of Love and it brought her all the way to Calvary alongside Her Son Jesus. Let us pray for the gift of piety daily so we can give our “Fiat” to Jesus in whatever He may ask of us. Let us pray that we can be more like Jesus who fulfilled the will of his Father in all things even when he uttered the words “Not my will, but yours be done’ in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Let us pray together; Come Holy Spirit and breath upon us Your spirit of Piety and fill our hearts with the spirit of filial love.

“Likewise the spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words.” Romans 8:26

 

 

Who fears to honor Mary too much~when God has exalted her above the choirs of angels in the Kingdom of the Blessed”

~Saint Louis Marie de Montfort~.facebook_-1306027402