Tuesday, August 31, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Mercedarian Formation: Solemnity of Saint Raymond Nonnatus

Mercedarian Formation: Solemnity of Saint Raymond Nonnatus

PostHeaderIcon Solemnity of Saint Raymond Nonnatus

Mercedarians around the world celebrate the solemnity of our most recognized saint: Saint Raymond Nonnatus. He is the patron of the unborn, Christian families and expectant mothers and midwives. I have a sister and a sister in law that are expecting. St. Raymond, please intercede and ensure all expectant mothers, especially Emily and Christine that they have healthy deliveries without incidences and that the babies are perfectly healthy, holy and live a long life of virtue, pro-life values, saintliness and charity to all people in the catholic faith!
Monday, August 30, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Novice master quotes

As the phone rings, "It's the Vatican!"

as we go out the door to work, "CBS News on the move!"

as you make a joke, "Laugh it up!"

May Our Lord and Lady and St. Peter Nolasco bless our beloved Fr. Euguene!

PostHeaderIcon First book report of novitiate

Better said, we have a spiritual book report due on the novice masters choice of books. This month it was Called to Communion: Understanding the Church Today by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger. Here are some quotes that stood out for me:

"New Testament as a whole strikingly demonstrates the primacy of Peter; we have seen that the formative development of tradition and of the Church supposed the continuation of Peter's authority in Rome as an intrinsic condition. The Roman primacy is not an invention of the popes, but an essential element of ecclesial unity that goes back to the Lord and was developed faithfully in the nascent Church." pg. 72.

In reference to St. Peter's primacy...

"The men in question (apostles) are so glaringly, so blatantly unequal to this function that the very empowerment of man to be the rock makes evident how little it is they who sustain the Church but God alone who does so, who does so more in spite of men than through them." pg. 73.

"The reconciliation with God that the Eucharist offers always demands reconciliation with one's brother as a prior condition (Matt: 5:23)" pg. 79.

"What is great and liberating about the Church is not something man-made but the gift that is given to us all. This gift is not the product of our own will and invention but precedes us and comes to meet us as the incomprehensible reality that is "greater than our heart" (1 John 3:20)" pg. 140.

PostHeaderIcon Weekend visitors2

PostHeaderIcon Weekend visitors....

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Thoughts of religious life

The novitiate reading involves a lot of articles and books about the origins of religious life, which of course is Jesus Himself and trying to closely live out the gospel. The reason consecrated life, the more correct term, seems at times to be irrelevant is the encroachment of the pagan world, a place where we all live. We all have to deal with the present moment we find ourselves and to find a way to communicate the gospel to those who are deepest estranged from living the gospel message. Mercedarians are particularly focused on redeeming those in captivity, whatever form that captivity may take. Consecrated life blossoms from families and people of faith, though not necessarily Catholic, yet none-the-less. God calls, no matter your situation, but it helps if you have the disposition to hear it because a family is already prayerful and open to different vocations. As you can read in this picture, "hearing the message" is often more about being disposed, quiet enough to hear it, and observant enough to see how it is manifesting itself over time. Do you want to live the gospel as close a possible? Do you have a desire to give yourself whole-heartedly to Jesus and Mary? Do you want to do great things for God? Have attempts at dating and married life gone awry, despite your best efforts? Do you have a great desire to be a martyr for the faith, or be heroic in saving souls? Maybe you have a vocation to be a consecrated religious?

Consider asking Jesus and Mary to give you the grace to see, understand, know and feel what your true vocation is. Ask Our Lady to grant you the grace to see the fruits of your vocation and know your vocation you've had your whole life. God doesn't make mistakes, we do. So we have to detach ourselves from sin and vice of all sorts and ask Jesus to show us how to see and then see the way He wants us to see so that we can find our true vocation. It worked for me, it can work for you. Peace and blessed discernment to all those who seek the true vocation of their life.

PostHeaderIcon Catechesis conference

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Sunset at Mercygrove

PostHeaderIcon Lunch at the convent

I had an eventful day and God the Father gave us a truly extraordinary cloud cover and sunset! May Our Heavenly Father be blessed forever and ever with great love for His Creation and Generosity!
Friday, August 20, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Called to Communion

My monthly book report is coming due at the end of August so I'm starting to piece together my paper, despite my occasional blocks. Here are some notable quotes from our beloved Pope Benedict XVI, writing as Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger:

"Morality retains its seriousness only where there is forgiveness--real forgiveness ensured by authority; otherwise it lapses back into the pure empty conditional." pg. 151

"He who loves desires to know." pg. 130

"If loving Christ implies getting to know him, it follows that the willingness to undertake committed and careful study is a sign of the seriousness of one's vocation ad of the earnest inward search for intimacy with him." pg. 130

"...throughout her history, the Church will have to apply constant care that an excess of human structures does not disguise her authentic spiritual center." pg. 94

Thursday, August 19, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Off to grocery shopping...

Last night afforded a great evening sky for about 20 minutes. I scurried to get my gear set for the right shot and was getting a blood transfusion by the hordes of mosquitos. Don't let anybody tell you a northern climate doesn't have mosquitos...I'm sure they called all their buddies to suck me pale last night! Despite all that I was happy that God gave several good pictures to take back to the computer. Praise be Our Heavenly Father!
Wednesday, August 18, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Nursing home

Fr. Eugene, my novice master, had me come with him to mass at local nursing home here in LeRoy. 195 beds! We met in the lunch room and set up an ad hoc altar amidst about 20 residents. I had a conversation with a resident who wanted to know if it was okay for her to sit in on mass, even though she wasn't catholic. Recognizing her good intentions, I said, "yes", and then began to tell the story of Scott Hahn's conversion story that involved sitting in the back of a catholic mass and discovering how much scripture was in the mass, how it all made sense the way it was put together. After mass, Father went around to several rooms and distributed Our Eucharistic Lord to those who were bedridden. What a graced time to bring Jesus to people!

I also had an opportunity to talk about St. Joseph. How God chose him in all of time for to be the earthly provider and protector of the Blessed Virgin Mary. And so, God was also giving us a model saint to call upon to provide and protect us as well in our lives and needs. Looking to pay off a house, I told her to pray to St. Joseph or Our Lady of Good Remedy.

What a great day when you get to talk about the faith with those who are open and believing!

Friday, August 13, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Hobby

I've noticed when I engage in my hobby of photography, it frees me up to live my faith because I can be spontaneous and creative. Many creative people fear they will lose their inspiration, but after having lost it several times and then having been shown by Our Lord how to regain it, you trust it will always be there. If only we could remember how we were found and reborn again in creativity and spontaneity.

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Mercedarian Novice, photographer, humorist, handy-man, fence-builder, prayer warrior, lover of Eucharist and Blessed Mother and Holy Mother Church.
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