Update on Z and Baby Charlotte

We are overwhelmed with your generosity and your support in the prayers that have been lifted up for Z (Mom) and Baby Charlotte! So…I wanted to update you on the little bit we know right now. Your prayers are such a comfort!

Z’s note to you…

I am just so overwhelmed by all the love from my family and friends around the world. No cross is too hard to bear when you have so many people lifting you up!! ❤️

Colin and Z…utterly exhausted.

Colin brought the kids up to see Mom. Hannah has been looking after them.

Z seems to be doing as well as expected. They are struggling a bit to keep her blood pressure down. The word has been that she may get out of the hospital on Monday.

Friday…All Saint’s Day:

When Z was pushing, the doctor and the nurses (3 of them) saw that the baby’s heartbeat dropped way down. When they couldn’t get it up, they “literally” ran her bed to the emergency C-Section room. The doctor said Z went under anesthesia at 1:01 p.m. and the baby was born at 1:02 p.m!

Z had a very large rupture of her uterus and therefore, the baby was deprived of oxygen and blood flow.

The doctor came in to Colin and myself and had a very grim prognosis. She said most babies do not survive and if they do, they have huge problems. When I asked if some cases turn out all right, she said that miracles happen…and she has seen some.

So…that is what we are praying for!

Right now the baby is undergoing something called “Cooling Therapy”. Here is the explanation….

Quote from HIE Help Center.

There is one established treatment that can minimize permanent brain damage from hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). However, it must be given very shortly after birth/the oxygen-depriving incident in order to be effective (ideally within six hours). This treatment is known as hypothermia therapy, but it has many other names, such as “therapeutic hypothermia,” “cooling therapy,” and “neonatal cooling.” Hypothermia therapy involves cooling the baby down to a temperature below homeostasis to allow the brain to recover from a hypoxic-ischemic injury. Typically, the target temperature is about 33.5 degrees Celsius (92.3 degrees Fahrenheit) (1). There are two ways that hypothermia therapy can be administered: using a cooling cap for “selective brain cooling” or by cooling the baby’s entire body (“whole-body cooling”). Either of these options can be effective; the choice to use one over the other is dependent on what protocols are in place and what equipment a particular NICU has (2).

By Monday night Charlotte should be done this part.

Then the rewarming…

After therapeutic hypothermia, the baby must be rewarmed slowly in order to prevent reperfusion injury. The AMC PSO suggests that the baby’s temperature should be increased by 0.2 – 0.5 degrees Celsius, until it reaches 36.5 degrees Celsius. Because there is an increased risk of seizure activity during rewarming, doctors should also consider EEG monitoring (2).

Z has only seen her baby once….for a very short time. We will try to keep watch as much as we can with Little Charlotte.

Once again, thank you so much for the prayers.

I will continue my regular posts and give you any significant updates. The prayers mean so much. God bless you!

Grandpa

Margy and David

Rosie plans on spending much time with Charlotte. She is used to sitting….

Sweet Baby Charlotte on her cooling bed….

Grandma (me)

Please Pray for Baby Charlotte

In your charity, please pray for our son and daughter-in-law, Colin and Elizabeth (better known as Z) and their precious little newborn, Charlotte Rose. Z had to have a C-section and suffered a severe uterine rupture. She is stable. Baby Charlotte may not pull through….

Colin had Epiphany Water with him and we baptized the baby with it. She is in another hospital right now going through what they call a “cooling therapy” for 72 hours. She is a beautiful baby and was 10 lbs. 9 oz. when she was born.

We almost lost Z. But she is stable now.

I will update as we know more.

 

Rosie, Bishop Morlino and the Benedictines

I started writing this article many months ago but couldn’t finish it because…well, it was just a hard time. Then, recently, I was reminded of it when I listened to a Taylor Marshall Podcast where  the good Father Richard Heilman mentioned the support of Bishop Morlino in his efforts to get reverence back in his church and in his Mass at St. Mary’s of Pine Bluff, Wisconsin.

So I dusted off the article and decided to finish it… (with Mother Abbess’ approval).

As Catholics, we know our sufferings are very powerful. A lot of the times we can’t see the benefit, at least not right away. But sometimes God gives us a peek at how efficacious they can be. This is what happened to us in the short time Rosie was in the convent.

It was October 2018 and Rosie was preparing her heart and her trousseau for her entrance into the Benedictine Abbey in Gower, MO…a convent with over forty nuns living the Traditional Benedictine way, with the Traditional Latin Mass offered daily.

Rosie was excited, yet nervous about this new step in her life. In the five years prior she had experienced some rather severe health problems….but had been stable for almost a year. So, Mother Abbess was willing to have Rosie try her vocation.

The first week and a half were pretty typical to a young lady first entering the convent. Rosie was homesick and had the pains of breaking into a life of much prayer and work….getting up very early and going through the motions, rather numb from the newness of it all.

Then one night, Rosie couldn’t make it to Compline. She was sitting on the bench in the hall, watching as the nuns were going the opposite way. She was feeling a familiar, terrible anticipation of what the sisters later called “episodes”…seizure-like episodes. All the nuns were walking away from her and she could feel herself slipping…

A while later, when Rosie woke up, she had five nuns staring at her with concern. Rosie’s world came crashing down on her. She had been through this before and when it got to this point, things would begin to spiral downward, to the point of complete disability.

And that’s what happened.

This time it seemed worse, though, than the other two times, because she was having more “episodes”. It was very concerning to the nuns and they felt like she needed answers.

In the past, we were always put off by the doctors shrugging their shoulders, telling us that these episodes were panic attacks, etc.

Mother Abbess was calling and emailing me giving updates, etc. She called one day to tell me that Rosie would have to go home. I knew it was coming….of course. She was taking up much energy and time for the nuns, who were looking after her around the clock. And she was only a candidate! (I will always be so grateful to the nuns for how they looked after Rosie…they were truly like angels!)

Before Rosie left, Reverend Mother wanted her to have some tests done. Rosie had an MRI and an EEG. Nothing showed up.

The next test to be done was with a heart halter. She would wear it for 48 hours only. In that time, they would hope Rosie would have an episode so they could monitor what the heart was doing….

The second day went by and Rosie’s “episodes” were not cooperating. So the sisters knew they had to do something…they would try to provoke an episode. Through their own doctor, they had learned what a “tilt-table” test was and they decided they would try that.

The few nuns that were Rosie’s caregivers were gathered around her bed. They had her lay flat for a while and then they were going to get her up very quickly.

Rosie was scared. As one can imagine, she did not like these episodes and the thought of bringing one on was a bit, shall we say, terrifying! We needed answers, though, and this was an important step…

It was then that Mother Abbess came in the room and told the nuns that she had just got news that Bishop Morlino was dying.

Bishop Morlino’s name was well-known around Traditional and Conservative circles. Wisconsin (where he was bishop) was very open to having the Traditional Latin Mass and other traditional devotions and orders.

The Bishop had invited these wonderful nuns to start a foundation in his diocese and Mother Abbess and the nuns were on the verge of doing just that! So…hearing that Bishop Morlino was dying was no little thing in their eyes! Some of the nuns began to cry.

Reverend Mother looked at Rosie and said, “We must pray for him.”

Rosie answered, “Well, I guess this is for him, then.”

What happened next was not pretty. It was one of the worst episodes Rosie ever experienced. She went into a semi-consciousness and her body experienced what one would call a “charlie-horse” or a “seizing-up”…and it was all through her body! The episode itself lasted for one hour…from 8:00pm – 9:00pm. The nuns found it quite alarming.

Afterwards, it took the good sisters 3 hours of rubbing and massaging to get Rosie’s stiffened legs and feet to maneuver again. One of the dear nuns slept on the floor at her bedside that night.

Rosie had offered this particular episode for Bishop Morlino. What she was to find out in the next few days was edifying….

On one of the following days, Mother Abbess came into Rosie’s room with tear-filled eyes to tell her what she had found out about Bishop Morlino’s death and how it seemed to coincide with what Rosie had experienced…and offered up for him.

The morning Rosie had her episode, Bishop Morlino became unconscious. The doctors were befuddled because all through the day, he seemed to have a “seizing-up of sorts”…in his body. The doctors didn’t know the reason for it…but it went on throughout the whole day. It was very hard for those who were close to him to witness.

At 8:00pm that night (right when Rosie went into her own “seizing-up” episode…and offered it for the good Bishop), the seizing-up of the Bishop stopped and he was peaceful for the next hour.

At 9:00pm (when Rosie came out of the episode), Bishop Morlino peacefully passed away.

It was as if Rosie had taken that particular suffering of Bishop Morlino for the last hour of his life.

Was it a coincidence…this timeline? I don’t think so. And neither did Mother Abbess and the nuns. As Sister put it, “He definitely had complete peace and alleviation from them lining up with Rosie’s episode.” Even to have access to this kind of information (through Mother Abbess) was a grace.

We were all edified. And for Rosie, whose journey since then (it has been a year since she entered the convent and five years that she has had some kind of mysterious illness), it was one of those epic moments showing the goodness of God and that all suffering is like gold…buying graces for all of our loved ones.

Mother Abbess gave Rosie one of the two crosses she had received from Bishop Morlino…blessed by Pope John Paul II. The other one she had mounted on her Coat of Arms.

It will remain a treasured memory of a faithful Bishop, an amazing Benedictine Convent and one girl’s sufferings.

 

“Love and sacrifice is thus as closely connected as the sun and the light. You can’t love without suffering and suffer without loving. It is with sacrifice that so confirms love “. – Santa Gianna Beretta Molla
Painting by Hermann Kaulbach (1846 – 1909, German)

May your All Hallows Eve be blessed! “‘Hallowe’en,’ as said, means ‘All Hallows’ Evening’ which is as Catholic a holiday as one can get. Let us pray to all the Saints that they might intercede and bring pagans to Christ so they might know the peace that comes from knowing that God loves them so much that He allowed Himself to take on a human nature, to suffer, and to die for them… “

Are you blessed by this site? Consider donating today. Our benefactors are remembered in our daily, family rosaries….
Thank you kindly for your support.  Link:

The Catholic Boy’s Traditional 30-Day Journal!

Dear Catholic Boys,

I wish to inspire you to a greater life of virtue. In order to lead a life of virtue and piety, you need to work on having good, daily habits….habits that will become second nature to you.

Let me tell you a little secret to success in forming these daily practices in your life…It is in having order in your life. This Journal will help you gain that order by staying on track and focused each day.

This Catholic Boy’s Traditional Journal will encourage you on your journey. It will help you to accomplish goals on a daily basis. You will be checking off your spiritual activities, your chores and the other things you should try to get done each day as a good, Catholic boy.

It also has a place to write down things you are thankful for, the people you wish to pray for and other important parts of your day. These good routines will carry you through your life.

My hope for you is that, after you are finished this journal, you will have an idea how to pattern your life with good daily practices.

Start now! Form those good habits! Draw from this journal an outline of what can be your own To-Do List for the rest of your life!

Available here.  

Package Special of Girl’s and Boy’s Journal is here.

Every Legend Has A BeginningThe year is A.D. 299. Diocletian rules the Roman Empire. And the gods have suddenly fallen silent.17-year-old Jurian doesn’t have time for the gods. He’s trying to hold his family together after his father died in disgrace, and piety — even to the Christ — just isn’t practical. But then a ruthless enemy targets his family, forcing Jurian to make a choice: will he pursue the glory he’s always wanted, or will he sacrifice everything to protect a faith that was never really his own….

As the fourth century dawns over Rome, Jurian seeks to regain his honor along the Empire’s brutal northern frontier. When Casca brings back word from the oracle of Apollo, the Emperor decides that the only way to save the Empire is to solve the “Christian problem” once and for all. He needs only one spark to set the world ablaze.

As the storm of fire and blood sweeps across the Empire, Jurian relinquishes his sword and the honor he most desires to fulfill the prophecy along with his destiny.

Saints aren’t born. They are forged.

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

A Special Feast Day – All Saints’ Day! / And The Winner Is….

A reminder that All Saints’ Day is just around the corner! I hope you all have something special planned! 🙂

ALL SAINTS’ DAY

by Mary Reed Newland, The Year and Our Children available at Sophia Institute Press

The feast of All Saints is one of the greatest of all the feasts because it celebrates what could have been impossible. The Cross is a tree that bears fruit.

This is the feast of its harvest. The celebrations of the mysteries in the life of our Lord are glorious, and there is no detracting from them. But He was God.

This day we celebrate the perfecting of human nature, by grace pouring from the side of Christ on the Cross, through His Church and His sacraments, remaking men after their despoiling in the Garden.

Aside from all the lofty things to be said about the saints and to the saints on this day, we want our children to understand in the marrow of their bones what the principal idea is: “We are so glad for you. Now pray, so we’ll be there too!” And they must add to this and to every feast an endless “Thank you, Lord Jesus, for making it possible.”

Why We Should Know the Saints

The Gospel of John tells us, “But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God: to them that believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”128

Each succeeding feast gives us a new understanding of this. We have been “born of God.” We must know the saints because we can learn from them how to receive His will, to love it, to act on it, to use the power He has given us to become the sons of God.

Here, we are His adopted sons separated from Heaven by life in the flesh. That part of us that He made in His own image and likeness is detained a while, in the body. It is being tried.

The saints went through the trials too, and with the help of His grace, they overcame them. They are in glory now, sons united at last with their Father. This is the greatest of His mercies.

He loved us before the creation of the world and planned for us to be in eternity with Him. When sin spoiled the plan, He perfected it – if one can say that – with the Incarnation. He became a man and spent Himself to devise the means for our perfection. The saints used it. We must too.

The antiphon from Vespers for this feast says what we want to say:

O ye Angels and Archangels, Thrones and Dominions, Principalities and Powers, Virtues of Heaven, Cherubim and Seraphim, ye Patriarchs and Prophets, holy Doctors of the Law, Apostles, all Martyrs of Christ, holy Confessors, Virgins of the Lord, Hermits and all Saints:

Intercede for us.

“It is always springtime in the heart that loves God.” – St. John Vianney

CHRISTINE SMITH!!

Congratulations, Christine! I have sent you an email….

Little Girl’s Lovely and Lacey Crocheted Veils!

These are darling little girl’s hand-crocheted veil made with care and detail. It will fit a little girl from age 9 months to 3 years.

Available here.

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

In this joyful and charming book, Maria Von Trapp (from The Sound of Music) unveils for you the year-round Christian traditions she loved traditions that created for her large family a warm and inviting Catholic home and will do the same for yours.

Mary Reed Newland wrote numerous beloved books for Catholic families, but The Year and Our Children is her undisputed masterpiece. Read it, cherish it, share it, put it into practice and give your kids the gift of a fully lived faith, every day and in every season.

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

The Saints – Maria Von Trapp

What a blessed feast is All Saints’ Day! And it is just around the corner….

This is so inspiring! Who needs Hollywood or Fairy Tales (not that we don’t like fairy tales….we do!) But we MUST pass this information down to our kids. We must make the saints come alive in their hearts! This is for real! This is the ammunition your kids will take with them when they are facing the world, the flesh and the devil!

Not only that, this is what Catholicism is about. It is a treasure of beauty and Tradition… stories held out to us that are not just stories, but that are the thread that ties us to our Catholic Heritage….the Golden Thread. Let’s not be the ones to sever it! Let’s make it ever stronger! Our poor world needs us and it is these little things we implant in our children’s hearts that will bring Catholicism back to our families, to our society, to our Beloved Church and to the world!

14610888_1776288722610925_1028186613588451048_n 14705800_1776288715944259_1580551305691749683_n 14729122_1776288745944256_8571034629127755607_n

img_7529

by Maria Von Trapp

I don’t know what I would have done without the saints in bringing up our large family.

Long before our children could memorize the Apostle’s Creed and pronounce, “I believe in the Communion of Saints,” they were already participating in it.

Very early they had learned that the Communion of Saints is one large, happy family whose members have one thing in common: they want to go to heaven.

Some of them, like ourselves, are still living here on earth, working hard to reach the goal. Very many, however, have already reached it. These are our big sisters and brothers, the saints.

And there is still another group. As Our Lord has said once that nothing unclean can enter the Kingdom of Heaven, most of the souls, after they leave the body in death, are not found ready and have to be purified in Purgatory from the last stain of sin.

Even while suffering, these souls are happy because they know that, for them, time with its great dangers is over and soon they will be forever united with their Lord and God.

“Be ye perfect even as your Heavenly Father is perfect,” says Our Lord, and “This is the will of God–your sanctification,” explains St. Paul. We mothers cannot begin early enough to make it seem quite natural to our little ones that we all–they and we–must strive to become saints just like….And this is where our big sisters and brothers enter in. The most precious thing about the saints is that they were not born that way.

They had their faults just as all of us do, and they had to work hard to overcome them. Some of them were quick-tempered like St. Peter or St. Francis de Sales; some even lied and stole and cheated their mother, as St. Augustine tells us about himself; some were quite wicked, like St. Paul or Mary Magdalene; others were meek and mild from the beginning, like little St. Therese and Dominico Savio.

We parents could learn from the great eagerness with which the children take to certain TV programs or movies with Hopalong Cassidy or other popular performers that every young soul is a hero-worshipper.

Children simply need someone to look up to, to imitate. Well, there is no Hollywood hero who could not be easily outdone by one of the saints. Among that very large number of our big sisters and brothers who “made it” there is one for every kind of child.

There are the Old Testament saints. Some of their stories are more exciting than all of Grimm’s fairy tales. Think of the stories of Abraham when he goes up the mountain to sacrifice his only son; of King David and King Solomon; the prophet Jeremiah; Daniel in the lion’s den; and Tobias with his friend, Raphael; not to forget our saintly first parents, Adam and Eve, whose feast the Church celebrates on the vigil of the birth of Our Lord, December 24th.

There are the stories of the holy women–Judith, Ruth, and Esther; that exciting adventure story of Joseph in Egypt; and the harrowing tale of Job on the dunghill.

Then there are the New Testament saints–all the Apostles and the holy women. There are the many heroes from the time when Christianity was an underground movement the martyrs of the first centuries, especially the young ones–the boy Tarcisius, who was killed as he was carrying the

Blessed Sacrament secretly to the prisoners in Rome, the girls Agnes and Philomene and Cecilia.

There are rich saints like King Louis of France and Queen Elizabeth of Hungary and Queen Margaret of Scotland.

There are poor saints like Francis of Assisi and Benedict Joseph Labre. There are saints who were sick most of their lives, like Lydwina. There are saints who were famous for their jokes and laughter, like Philip Neri and Don Bosco.

When we turn the pages of one of the books with a daily story about one of the saints, we find that there were holy boys and girls, holy mothers and fathers, holy lawyers, doctors, slaves, popes and priests, farmers and swineherds, tailors and bakers–just “holy everybody,” as one of our children once said.

My husband had once taken great pains to tell a beautiful fairy tale to the children. When he had finished, the oldest asked, “Is all of that true, Father?” Slightly embarrassed, he had to admit that it was not, whereupon the child said, “Why did you tell us, then?”

Often afterwards, when we came across tales of saints who had spent their lives sitting on a column, such as Simon the Stilite, or who flew through the air like Joseph of Cupertino, we would say that as a story this equaled any fairy tale but had the added advantage of standing the crucial test, “Father, was that true?”

 

First of all a child must be acquainted with his own patron saints, whose names were given to him at his baptism. Later on he will also learn about the patron saints in his immediate family, and in a large family like ours this will amount to a great number of stories.

Then, by and by, as the child grows up and hears more about these big sisters and brothers, he will add some of his own liking.

I told my children always to look for saints who had the same troubles and the same faults as they did and then to ask his or her intercession. He must know how it is.

Whereupon one day one of the little ones said to me, “Mother, I know now why you choose St. Peter as your favorite saint. He could get so mad that he once even cut somebody’s ear off!”

Throughout the centuries Christian people have adopted this same policy.

They have searched in the lives of the saints and have chosen certain ones as patrons for certain ailments.

There is, for instance, a group of fourteen saints particularly famous for their prompt intercession in special cases, known as the Fourteen Holy Helpers (Fourteen Auxiliary Saints). Here is the list, together with the attributes by which they are characterized in painting and sculpture.

(1) St. George (April 23rd), soldier-martyr. Always represented with the dragon he strikes down. He is invoked against the devil, and together with St. Sebastian and St. Maurice he is the patron of soldiers.

(2) St. Blaise (February 3rd), bishop, carries two candles crossed; he is invoked against diseases of the throat.

(3) St. Erasmus (June 2nd), martyr. His entrails are wound around a windlass. He is invoked against diseases of the stomach. Patron of seafarers.

(4) St. Pantaleon (July 27th), bishop. He is recognized by his nailed hands. Invoked against consumption. Together with St. Luke and Saints Cosmas and Damien, patron of doctors.

(5) St. Vitus (June 15th), martyr. He is recognized by his cross. Invoked against St. Vitus’ dance and the bite of poisonous or mad animals.

(6) St. Christopher (July 25th), bears the Infant Jesus on his shoulder. Invoked in storms and against accidents in travel.

(7) St. Denis (October 9th), bishop, holds his head in his hands.Invoked for people who are possessed by a devil.

(8) St. Cyriacus (August 8th), martyr, wears deacon’s vestments.Invoked against diseases of the eye.

(9) St. Acathius (May 8th), martyr, wears a crown of thorns. Invoked against headache.

(10) St. Eustace (September 20th), martyr, wears hunting clothes and is shown with a stag. Invoked against fire–temporal and eternal. Patron of hunters.

(11) St. Giles (September 1st), hermit, is recognized by his Benedictine habit and his hind. Invoked against panic, epilepsy, madness, and nightmares.

(12) St. Margaret (July 20th), martyr, keeps a dragon in chains. Invoked against pains in the loins. Patron for women in childbirth.

(13) St. Barbara (December 4th), martyr, is recognized by her tower and the ciborium. Invoked against sudden death. Patron of artillery men and miners.

(14) St. Catherine (November 25th), martyr, is shown with a broken wheel. Invoked by students, philosophers, orators, and barristers as “the wise counselor.”

In the old country, a picture of the Fourteen Holy Helpers is to be found in many a little wayside shrine or impressive pilgrimage church, such as Vierzehn-Heiligen in Bavaria.

It cannot be stressed enough that perhaps the most important books in the home, after Holy Scriptures, are those dealing with the lives of the saints.

Besides the classic Butler, there are other collections. We always liked Omer Englebert’s “The Lives of the Saints,” (New York, David McKay Co.) which gives the story of several saints for every day, thus providing one with many “true stories.”

Looking through those “Lives” becomes more and more fascinating as we realize the many links uniting these people of long ago with us in the twentieth century.

To my amazement I discovered that there is a patron saint for practically every profession–though we have to distinguish between saints appointed by the people themselves and others appointed by Rome. Thus the Holy Father, Pius XII, named St. Michael the patron of policemen, St. Albert the Great as patron for scientists, St. Alphonse Liguori as patron of Confessors, and St. Catherine of Siena as patron of nurses.

He appointed Our Lady under her title of the Immaculate Conception as patroness of the soldiers of the United States, while his predecessor, Pius XI, made St. Therese of Lisieux patron of all missionaries, St. Aloysius patron of all young people, the famous Cure of Ars, St. Jean-Baptiste-Marie Vianney, the patron of parish priests.

What I myself like best of all is that Rome appointed Our Lady of Loreto the patroness of aviators (obviously because she steered successfully the holy house of Nazareth through the air and had it land in Loreto, Italy, where it has been venerated since the Middle Ages).

Besides these “appointments” of patron saints, there are many chosen by the people.

I never could find out why St. Anthony of Padua (June 13th) has to find lost objects for everybody around the globe or why St. Matthew (February 24th) is the patron of repentant drunkards.

With other saints it is easy to see why some incident of their life or death was taken up by the people as indications that they should be invoked in special cases.

Good St. Anne is the patron saint for mothers-in-law and domestic troubles; St. Florian (May 4th), who was a Roman soldier condemned to death as a Christian and drowned in the River Enns in Austria, is universally invoked to extinguish fires, obviously with the help of the water hallowed by his death; St. Bartholomew (August 24th), who was skinned alive, was made patron for all tanners and butchers.

It is easy to see why the Holy Innocents (December 28th) are the patrons of choir boys and foundlings but rather hard to fathom why St. Margaret (July 20th) cures kidney diseases.

One of our children made a list once, “in case we need it,” of saints to be invoked for special illnesses. Here it is:

Against fever–St. Hugh (April 29th)

Against epilepsy–St. John Chrysostom (January 27th)

Against burns and poisons–St. John the Evangelist (December 27th)

Against inflammations–St. Benedict (March 21st)

Against cough and whooping cough–St. Blaise (February 3rd) Against consumption–St. Pantaleon (July 27th)

Against cold–St. Sebaldus (August 19th)

Patron of all the sick and dying–St. John of God (March 8th)

One of our boys got interested in patron saints for special professions.

Here is his little list:

St. Jerome–patron of students (September 30th)

St. Isidore–patron of laborers (May 10th)

St. Ives–patron of lawyers, jurists, advocates, notaries, and orphans

(May 19th)

The “Four Crowned Martyrs”–patrons of masons and sculptors (November

8th)

St. Francis de Sales–patron of writers (January 29th)

St. Gomer–patron of the unhappily married (October 11th)

St. Gregory the Great–patron of singers (March 12th)

St. Cecilia–patroness of musicians (November 22nd)

St. John the Baptist–patron of tailors (June 24th)

St. Paul–patron of rope-makers (June 30th)

If there are girls and boys in a family and one of the boys has made a list of various saints for different professions, the girls simply have to make a list of patron saints, too. Ours found patron saint for animals:

Bees–St. Ambrose (December 7th)

Pigs–St. Anthony the hermit (January 17th)

Dogs–St. Rochus (August 16th)

Horses–St. Leonard (November 6th)

Asses–St. Anthony of Padua (June 13th)

Birds–St. Francis of Assisi (October 4th)

Fish–St. Anthony (June 13th)

And once in a while somebody would come running with a special discovery.

“Mother,look! We have enough girls in our family. I found a patron saint to obtain male children: St. Felicitas (July 10th)!”

“Mother, do you think Aunt Susan knows there is a saint of old maids–St. Catherine of Alexandria (November 25th)?”

They also found that St. Gaston is the patron of children who learned to walk very late, and they discovered a few very valuable saints for weather.

If you want rain, pray to St. Odo; if you want sunshine, pray to St. Claire. But the head of the heavenly weather department is of course St. Peter.

And so it goes. If the children in a family become sufficiently interested in their big brothers and sisters, the saints, to start making such lists and finding out about the respective feast days, it is just as if one of their grown-up sisters were getting married and the new in-laws taken into the family.

Their birthdays and feast days are noted down, the enlargement of the family circle is celebrated, and this, each time, is a happy occasion.

While close relations are kept up with a great many of the saints, some of them are singled out by the Church to be celebrated in a special way.

There is, for instance, St. John the Baptist, whose feast is celebrated on the twenty-fourth of June. We learn that as far back as the eighth century bonfires were being lit in honor of the precursor of Christ–the “Johannesfeuer”–as a special solemnity.

In the old world, the young people of the villages and towns take kindling wood up the mountains or outside of town to some beautiful spot on a river bank. Before it is lit a few words point out the significance of this fire at the height of the year, at the beginning of summer when the nights are shortest; and the symbolism of fire and light in relation to that radiant figure, the Baptist. “He was a burning and a shining light: and you were willing for a time to rejoice in his light” (John 5:35).

When the flames are leaping up, everybody present joins in singing one of the old songs of the occasion.

When the fire is burning low, everyone leaps over it–boys and girls holding hands and leaping by twos. Then they settle down around the fire for the fire-watch until the last spark has died out.

Soon afterwards, on June 29th, we celebrate the feast of St. Peter and St. Paul.

The badge of St. Peter is the cock, in memory of the “thrice-crowing” of that animal.

As St. Peter is the “Great Fisherman,” his feast day is celebrated in many seacoast towns with great festivity.

Boats are decorated with garlands and ribbons. There are races, and the chief dish is fish, of course.

In our extensive traveling throughout many countries over three continents we have come across many a saint who is very famous locally but of whom we otherwise might never have heard. One day in the year is set aside to remember them all–the ones whose names are mentioned in the calendar and the multitudes who stand around the throne of God. This is All Saints’ Day, on November 1st.

In the Epistle, St. John tells us about the vision he had of the “great multitude which no man could number, of all nations, and tribes, and peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and in sight of the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands,” singing praise to God.

The teaching of Our Lord in the Gospels tells us what makes a saint a saint “Blessed are the meek…Blessed are they that mourn…Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after justice…Blessed are the merciful…Blessed are the clean of heart…Blessed are the peacemakers…Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice’ sake….” Nothing is so encouraging as to consider, on All Saints’ Day, those millions and millions around the throne of God who followed this teaching.

Like St. Augustine before her, our Martina, when she was still quite little, said once on All Saints’ Day, “As I think of it, Mother, if all those people could do it, why not we!”

lovasik

“God has so constituted us, that in loving and caring for our own children—the richest and best things in our natures are drawn out. Many of the deepest and most valuable lessons ever learned, are read from the pages of a child’s unfolding life. The thought of our responsibility for them, exalts every faculty of our souls. In the very care which they exact, they bring blessing to us.” J.R. Miller

14705654_584179485117399_3538311806564163249_n

Sign up for the Giveaway here!

Need a little help this Advent? The Catholic Mother’s Traditional Advent Journal will help you stay focused and on track as you guide your family through this wonderful season by making the Liturgy come alive in your home! Available here.  Advent Package available here.

This is a unique book of Catholic devotions for young children. There is nothing routine and formal about these stories. They are interesting, full of warmth and dipped right out of life. These anecdotes will help children know about God, as each one unfolds a truth about the saints, the Church, the virtues, etc. These are short faith-filled stories, with a few questions and a prayer following each one, enabling the moral of each story to sink into the minds of your little ones. The stories are only a page long so tired mothers, who still want to give that “tucking in” time a special touch, or pause a brief moment during their busy day to gather her children around her, can feel good about bringing the realities of our faith to the minds of her children in a childlike, (though not childish), way. There is a small poem and a picture at the end of each story. Your children will be straining their necks to see the sweet pictures! Through these small stories, parents will sow seeds of our Holy Catholic Faith that will enrich their families all the years to come!

This revised 1922 classic offers gentle guidance for preteen and teenage girls on how to become a godly woman. Full of charm and sentiment, it will help mother and daughter establish a comfortable rapport for discussions about building character, friendships, obedience, high ideals, a cheerful spirit, modest dress, a pure heart, and a consecrated life.

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

 

Now Let Us See What We Can Do to Become Saints….

“But I just don’t feel like I love God!” Ever felt like that? Me, too!

The devil trembles when one gets on their knees to pray when the heart is cold and it is very difficult! The sign of a true lover…one who wills to love!

From An Easy Way to Become a Saint by Father Paul O’Sullivan, 1949

HOW TO LOVE GOD

Now let us see what we can do to become saints. The first, the easiest and the most certain of all means to become a saint is to love God. We cannot possibly do anything holier, anything more pleasing to Him or anything more meritorious for ourselves.

We must learn all about the Love of God, for nothing is more important and more necessary for us, and nothing more conducive to our happiness. To love God is the great work of our lives.

THE VALUE OF AN ACT OF LOVE

The value of one simple act of love is priceless. An act of love is of greater value than a thousand acts of any other virtue, just as one small diamond is worth more than a thousand gold pieces.

Our Blessed Lord told Benigna Consolata that any ordinary Christian can make an act of love in a moment which will have a reward for all eternity. We can make countless acts of love every day without any difficulty.

Secondly, He told her that one act of love gives Him more glory and more pleasure than a thousand horrible blasphemies give Him pain!

Thirdly, love wipes out our sins. One short act of love won for the Thief on the cross the promise that he would be that very day with Christ in Paradise.

On the other hand, all that we do which is not done for the love of God is worthless and will get no reward.

We may toil for long years and receive great praise and honor for our labors, but if our work is not done for love of God, it is worthless.

Thus it is that a poor old woman who tells her beads at the church door, who bears her poverty patiently and who lives a quiet Christian life will have a higher place in Heaven than the great statesmen, the clever generals, the famous politicians, who direct the destinies of vast empires but who do not think of offering their work to God.

IS IT EASY TO LOVE GOD?

Most certainly, for God created us expressly to love Him and to love Him with all our hearts and souls. He is goodness itself. He has done everything to make us love Him.

One might as well ask if it is easy for a child to love its mother, for a wife to love a dear husband, for a friend to love a friend, for a servant to love a good and generous master. It is much easier to love God, who is infinitely good and sweet, God who loves us tenderly and affectionately, who is our dearest and most loving Father, our best, our truest Friend. All that is necessary is to realize His goodness.

The first great Commandment, the very essence of our holy Religion, is to “Love God with all our heart and soul; with all our strength and mind.” This everyone must do. Surely the all-merciful and wise God would never make the very first condition of His beautiful Religion something hard and difficult.

SOME SAY THAT THEY CANNOT LOVE GOD

There are people who say that they cannot love God. When they make an act of love and say, “Oh my God, I love You,” they feel nothing in their hearts to correspond to their words. Their words sound hollow, cold and false. This is what they tell us themselves. Unfortunately, this happens to many, and as a consequence, they are losing every day of their lives great merits and never experience the wonderful happiness they should enjoy in their Religion.

Why cannot they love God?

There are four reasons:

First of all, they never ask God to help them to love Him.

Secondly, they do not realize, as we have said, what God is, His boundless goodness, His sweetness, mercy and love.

Thirdly, they do not understand how much He loves them.

Fourthly, they have no idea of all that emotional love, sentimental love; we speak of the solid love of God which comes from a clear, intelligent understanding of how good and sweet God is.

He Himself tells us: “Taste and see how sweet the Lord is,” and again, “My yoke is sweet, My burden light.”

“The one who knows how to profit by his own errors is the one who makes a success of life. To be discouraged over your mistakes is foolish. To disregard them is equally unwise. To face them fearlessly and try to learn from them how to avoid a mistake next time is part of wisdom.” – Fr. Edward F. Garesche, Catholic Book of Character and Success, 1912, Painting by John George Brown

Sign up for the Giveaway here!

 

A wonderful book showing how the angels have visited people innumerable times in the past, how they do so today, and would do even more if we asked them. Also, how they prevent accidents, comfort us, help us, and protect us from the devils. Contains many beautiful stories about St. Michael, St. Raphael and St. Gabriel; plus, angel stories from St. Gemma Galgani, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. John Bosco, etc.

Save

Save

A very optimistic book showing how an “ordinary” Catholic can become a great saint without ever doing anything “extraordinary”–just by using the many opportunities for holiness that to most people lie hidden in each day. Written with an assurance of success that is totally convincing and infectious. Many easy but infallible means of reaching great sanctity.

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

Nuptial Blessing/Dark and Cheerless Homes – True Womanhood

Mike and Jeanette (daughter)

from True Womanhood – Rev. Bernard O’Reilly

We have just spoken of the Divine assistance, which never fails the soul striving earnestly to fulfill important duties and to do all the good she can.

Think of the contract God entered into with you when you entered into the married state and received at the hands of the Church the nuptial blessing.

You were told that the matrimonial union had its model in the union of Christ with his Church, that his great love for her, which brought Him to the cross, and binds Him to be present on our altars to the end of time, is the type of the great and self-devoted love which husband and wife should ever have for each other.

Did you ever reflect that when you put your hand in your husband’s hand before the Church, giving him your heart and your life thenceforward, that God, who is ever by the side of those who believe and trust in Him, promised you a mighty wealth of grace to be all your own till death!

It enables you to love your husband more and more daily, with a deeper and a holier love, to make your own life like that of the Church towards her Crucified Love, one perpetual act of devotion and self-sacrifice – giving him in his every need your own strong love to sustain, and comfort, and strengthen him, taking up his cross courageously, and cheering him to labor and to suffer, because you both know, or ought to know, that God is ever with you.

Were your lot cast and your home built in a tree-less plain amid a dry and barren country, how you would thank the man who would dig for you at your very door a well so deep and so unfailing that its cool and sweet waters would ever flow forth, winter and summer, for yourself and your dear ones!

Father VanderPutten and Father Lillard

And yet the great graces attached by Christ to the worthy reception of the divine sacrament of matrimony, from within your home, wherever you chance to be, a well of water for the soul’s health and strength so divinely prepared, that no length of time can exhaust it.
Why do you not drink of the waters of your own well?

We have just said how much the true woman has it in her power to do — no matter how poor her home or hard her husband’s lot — if she only knew both the extent of her power to cheer his lot and the sacredness of the obligation which binds her to do it. We now appeal to the experience and generosity of the wife, mother, and sister of the laboring man.
There was a rapid sketch previously of the comforts and delights of the poor hard-working man’s home, when love and devotion were toiling to prepare a sweet rest for him when the day’s work was ended.

DARK AND CHEERLESS HOMES

But have we seriously thought of the number of homes made dark, and cheerless, and desolate, and hateful to the husband, the brother, the son, and the daughter, too, by the absence of that bright spirit of love, which works at home from dawn till sunset, to have everything warm and pleasant and restful for the weary ones coming back after their eight and ten hours of labor?

If the devoted, God-fearing, sweet-tempered woman is rewarded by seeing her dear ones unhappy when kept away from the bright home she makes for them, and most happy when seated near the warm hearth and charmed with her smile and her voice, it is no less certain that the selfish, untidy, ill-tempered, and bitter-tongued woman succeeds in making home unbearable for everyone who is dependent on her.

Why is it that so many men — thrifty, hard-working, made to be and disposed to be devoted husbands and exemplary fathers — are driven at the end of their day of toil to find — not rest, indeed, nor recreation — in the neighbor’s house — but some distraction from the thought of their own comfortless home, some rest from the din and lash of the ceaseless tongue which is their torment?

Why are so many, at length, driven to the tavern to seek forgetfulness in intoxication? Is it not because woman forgets to be loving and devoted and ingenious in the sweet arts of making her fire burn brighter on the hearth, and her own person more attractive to her dear ones by some little ornament put on to welcome the laborers at evening, and her humble meal made more appetizing by some of the many cheap seasonings that the poorest can buy, and her whole house shining with cleanliness, and filled with the sweet music of her own delighted tones?

Ah! love has stores from which can be borrowed without stint, and at little cost, kind words and warm smiles and a thousand other things which go straight to the heart thirsting for the endearments, the joys, and the repose of home.

Why will you not be a queen in your own little kingdom, wife, mother, sister, and make all hearts subject to you by this ascendancy of your goodness and devotion.
There are worse consequences still — especially in cities and manufacturing towns — which are caused by the want of the wifely and motherly qualities described above.

Young people of both sexes who are forced — perhaps from early boyhood or girlhood — to seek for employment outside of their home, feel an imperative need of the rest and comfort and love of their own fireside, when the end of their long day of toil has come.

Blessed is the mother who knows how to make their home bright and warm for them! But what shall we say of her who cares not to do so? Or who makes her home intolerable to her dear ones?

This much is certain, that in our overcrowded cities, if not elsewhere, thousands upon thousands of hard-working young people are driven into dangerous company and corrupting amusements because they have no home to love, to be proud of, in which to find the repose of heart and body so needful for their age especially.

A mother holds her baby in her arms, looks up to God, and knows that she, by months of suffering and patience, has co-operated with Him in making and bringing into the world a little body housing a priceless soul. A father stands above his new-born son resting in the arms of his wife, and knows as he picks him up and weighs him tenderly that he has shared with God the Father His very fatherhood; for this mite of humanity, immortal in destiny, is truly his son. Mother and father together have co-operated with God in the astonishing creation of a human being. -Fr. Daniel A. Lord, 1950’s

Sign up for the Giveaway here!

Our Lady of Guadalupe Aprons…💝“Patroness of the Americas” Apron! Feminine and Beautiful!

Make a statement with this lovely and graceful “Our Lady of Guadalupe” handcrafted apron….fully lined….made with care. Aprons tell a beautiful story…..a story of love and sacrifice….of baking bread and mopping floors, of planting seeds and household chores. Sadly, many women have tossed the aprons aside and donned their business attire. Wear your apron with joy….it is a symbol of Femininity….”Finer” Femininity! 🌺 💗

Available here.

73321890_1173691152840772_1457288639825313792_n

book suggestions3

Called by her people Isabella la Catolica, she was by any standard one of the greatest women of all history. A saint in her own right, she married Ferdinand of Aragon, and they forged modern Spain, cast out the Moslems, discovered the New World by backing Columbus, and established a powerful central government in Spain. This story is so thrilling it reads like a novel. Makes history really come alive. Highly readable and truly great in every respect!
Father weaves a tapestry of the Church’s teaching on the unity of the members of Christ’s Mystical Body using profound and picturesque meditations on the seven sorrows of the Blessed Mother:
This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

A Catholic Halloween Party – Mary Reed Newland

Mary Reed Newland relates how her family spent Halloween night. I am impressed on how our Catholic heritage is brought into it. I think you will enjoy it! And, if you are like us and only celebrate All Saints’ Day, you can take some of her ideas and make it part of your Feastday party…..

Prayers and Party Fun Together by Mary Reed Newland, The Year and Our Children

Our family’s Halloween parties are now planned around the custom of begging for soul cakes. Among the neighborhood children who attend, Catholics together with non-Catholics, there is no one who is not intrigued to learn the stories of these customs and join in the prayers and the fun.

Frying doughnuts is a big undertaking, but this one time of the year we have a doughnut session – the day before Halloween.

Soul cakes need not be doughnuts, but we like to tell Mrs. Berger’s story; and this, of course, leads to much tasting to see if one does think of eternity at every bite.

Other refreshments for the party are natural treats – apples, nuts, popcorn – all perfect companions to the soul cakes. Next, costumes. Saint costumes have been much in vogue in our circle since the rediscovery of Christian Halloween. These are lots of fun to make, but if you are having non-Catholic children who do not know about patron  saints, a full course on the subject is not possible before the party.

You might suggest that these come as some departed soul, one of those from  eternity who come to warn the living to mend their ways. This gives much leeway and justifies the inevitable cowboys and space cadets. Cowboys do eventually depart, I am confident, and space cadets look as though they already have.

A rhymed invitation tells everybody that this is a real party and keeps enough of the familiar Halloween ghostliness to enhance the rest, which sounds a bit unfamiliar.

Our invitation goes like this:

Come to keep vigil on All Hallows Even,

With Monica, Jamie, Peter and Stephen,

With John, Philip, Christopher, dressed up like souls;

Bring berries of red to help ward off the ghouls.

Come knock at the door and beg for soul cakes,

Pray hard for the souls, for the prayers that it takes

To speed them to Heav’n go too often unsaid,

And who prays for poor souls will ne’er want for bread.

This hints at what is going to happen. Followed by a telephone call or a note to the mothers of the guests, it gives everyone time to get the “feel of it.” This is important. If it isn’t clearly explained how they will beg at the door and say a prayer for the dead, the party will disintegrate right there with the “gimmes.”

The berries of red and their use have their origin way back when holly and evergreens bearing red berries were used to remind the Christians of the blood of Christ and the burning love of Mary for her Child.

It is not hard for country children to find a spray of red berries, but even in the city, there is bittersweet on sale at the street corner; or if you live near a barberry hedge, you might prevail on the owner to let you have a sprig – and to show your goodwill, tell him that it is a wise way to ward off witches.

An old witch patrols the lawn at our house this night, riding a broomstick and fleeing in fright from the groups of guests, terrified at the sight of the berries. Barred from the house by these berries (some of which are combined with autumn leaves and fastened to the front door in a swag), she has to be content to hoot and screech, pop out from behind trees; and when the time comes, bade by what she knows is the truth, she gives directions for begging at the door:

I am forced to tell ye this, miserable dearies, whether I would or no; so mark it well. If ye pray for the dead, they are released sooner from their torment of waiting in Purgatory and sped on the wings of light to their eternal reward. So go and knock and the woman will open to your knock, and sing as loud as ye can: `A soul cake, a soul cake, a prayer for a soul cake!’

She will bear on her arm a basket of cakes and tell ye for whom ye are to pray. And may ye all choke on every crumb and find praying and eating at one and the same time as miserable as the torment I endure forever riding hungry on my broomstick!

Everyone is delighted by her useless malice, and finds that simultaneous praying and eating is not difficult. Better yet, bade by the woman of the house, they pray before they eat (much more respectful).

They pray for grandfathers and grandmothers and aunts and uncles and cousins and friends and all the souls in Purgatory. The Catholic children and the non-Catholic children say together for their dead the one prayer they share in common, the Our Father; and after the voices of the Catholic children have died away, the rest continue with “for Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.”

This, incidentally, was appended to the Our Father long before the so-called Reformation; it is one of those liturgical additions that was eventually dropped for the sake of purity. Knowing this helps eliminate some of the irritation Catholics feel when hearing it. It is not something the Protestants dreamed up just to be difficult.

Around the house to the various doors (because we live in the country, we must confine our party to one house), and then inside for the celebration. In the city, children could go to several houses close together, or to several apartment doors.

The old witch, spying one door without red berries, makes a last appearance, cackling and greeting the guests from behind the puppet show. She shakes the children’s hands with a wet glove and presses an ice cube in each unsuspecting palm, whereupon they shriek and scream and pile through the door into the living room to duck for apples, chase them on strings, eat popcorn and soul cakes, and drink cider.

If there are many small children, plan the party for them – and let the older children help give it. If there are more older children, it is best to plan the party for them. Sometimes it will work both ways, but more often than not, widely divergent age groups do not combine successfully for parties because the same games and entertainments do not appeal to both.

If you have both small fry and older children, you might plan with the mothers of the neighborhood to hold two parties – one for little children at one house, one for older children at another.

For very small children, ducking for apples, apples on strings, refreshments, and the chance to make noise and antics in their costumes can be nicely gathered up and rounded off by reading one or two stories.

If they have come in saint costumes, the outstanding standing game can be telling your saint’s story – after the others have guessed who you are.

For older children or even adults, “A Trayful of Saints” is a good game. On a tray, place a dozen or more objects that symbolize familiar saints.

For example: key- St. Peter; flower – Little Flower; rose – St. Rose of Lima; dog – St. Dominic; bird – St. Francis of Assisi; cross – St. Helena; crown – St. Elizabeth of Hungary; eagle – St. John the Evangelist; shell – St. James; Sacred Heart – St. Margaret Mary Alacoque; kitchen utensil – St. Martha; half coat (paper cut-out) – St. Martin of Tours.

Go slowly from one guest to another, giving them time to memorize what is on the tray. Then pass out paper and pencils and have them list what they remember, and what saint they think they symbolize.

Charades depicting outstanding events in the lives of the saints are always fun at such a party, and ghost stories are in order when the apple-ducking is done and people are sitting around the fire.

“And you, too, must stand by your convictions at the cost of things you love. An ideal is worth little if it is not worth wholehearted, honest effort. Nothing is more pitiful than a woman whose mind admires purity and right, yet whose will is too weak to choose them and whose life is blighted by sin and mire about her. Be true, be noble, aim high, and God will give you strength to keep your ideals.” – Mabel Hale, Beautiful Girlhood, Painting by Gregory Frank Harris

Sign up for the Giveaway here!

Many lovely handmade items at Meadows of Grace!

 

A masterpiece that combines the visions of four great Catholic mystics into one coherent story on the life of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Based primarily on the famous revelations of Ven. Anne Catherine Emmerich and Ven. Mary of Agreda, it also includes many episodes described in the writings of St. Bridget of Sweden and St. Elizabeth of Schenau. To read this book, therefore, is to share in the magnificent visions granted to four of the most priviledged souls in the history of the Church.

In complete harmony with the Gospel story, this book reads like a masterfully written novel. It includes such fascinating details as the birth and infancy of Mary, her espousal to St. Joseph and her Assumption into Heaven where she was crowned Queen of Heaven and Earth.

For young and old alike, The Life of Mary As Seen by the Mystics will forever impress the reader with an inspiring and truly unforgettable understanding of the otherwise unknown facts concerning Mary and the Holy Family. Imprimatur.

He was called the man of his age, the voice of his century. His influence towered above that of his contemporaries, and his sanctity moved God himself. Men flocked to him–some in wonder, others in curiosity, but all drawn by the magnetism of his spiritual gianthood. Bernard of Clairvaux–who or what fashioned him to be suitable for his role of counseling Popes, healing schisms, battling errors and filling the world with holy religious and profound spiritual doctrine? Undoubtedly, Bernard is the product of God’s grace. But it is hard to say whether this grace is more evident in Bernard himself or in the extraordinary family in which God choose to situate this dynamic personality. This book is the fascinating account of a family that took seriously the challenge to follow Christ… and to overtake Him. With warmth and realism, Venerable Tescelin, Blesseds Alice, Guy, Gerard, Humbeline, Andrew, Bartholomew, Nivard and St. Bernard step off these pages with the engaging naturalness that atttacks imitation. Here is a book that makes centuries disappear, as each member of this unique family becomes an inspiration in our own quest of overtaking Christ.

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

 

Chit-Chat, A New Book Giveaway and Photos

Warm golden light from the setting sun lights this hay field in Shawnee Co. Kansas. -Kansas Whispers

It seems a long time since I put some photos up…or told you of news along the way….

It is an exciting time for us…all of our couples (we have six that are married) are expecting! So the next months will be busy with little newborns everywhere! I was hoping to get a photo of all our ladies together but that just doesn’t happen too often (or I forget about the photo shoot when everyone is around). Our daughter-in-law, Z, is due in a week!

In our area, the harvest is in full swing (it is later this year because of the abundance of rain in the spring and early summer) and the leaves are turning.

What a beautiful time of the year! Most people who talk about their favorite season, fall back on….fall! I can’t help but agree…cinnamon sticks, oranges and reds, lots of whipped cream (oh…and don’t forget the tea under it!), and rosaries around the bonfire!

Here is an old post called Feminine Fall Fashions with lots of different outfits for the season of fall. Maybe it will give you some inspiration today!

And here is a post by my daughter, Theresa, about Fall with its Five Senses. It will get you into the mood of Auspicious Autumn Awesomeness!

I also have some questions that were asked of me and I would like to answer them on a post. I just haven’t had time. So sorry to anyone I have neglected along the way! It is very unintentional!

Before I continue, I would like to make you aware of this Copyright Disclaimer for this site. It will be under the “About” Tab in the top menu for further reference:

When I post something from a book of a living author, I have that author’s permission. (Emilie Barnes gave me her permission before her death in 2016)

All the other articles are from books that were published in the 1950’s or before and their authors have passed on. Most of the books can be found online (the complete text) on EWTN or otherwise.

These authors gave us fantastic information that would remain buried or hidden so I am getting it out there. I think the authors would be grateful (I pray for them and to them) and I know many of my readers are grateful, too.

By my referencing their works, I hope the reader will be encouraged to purchase the entire work.

Introducing my new book (and a Giveaway)….

The Catholic Boy’s Traditional 30-Day Journal!!

After I finished the Girl’s Journal, I had requests for a boy’s journal, too. So, here it is! It is not off the press yet but will be soon and will be included in this Giveway!

 

Let’s keep our young boys engaged in the Faith! Let’s teach them how to be organized, how to prioritize, how to keep on top of, first, the Spiritual things in their lives, and then the other daily duties that God requires of them!

Nothing is more valuable than this type of education…an education for life! That is where this journal comes in! It will give your boys a feel for keeping a To-Do List, with spiritual things at the forefront! What more could you want for them?

Let this journal help you along the way, Mothers! The boys will have 30 days of checklists, thoughts to inspire them for the day, some fun things…like drawing their day and other things to keep them focused. This next 30 days will be invaluable to them…to learn life skills, to have the satisfaction of checking off the activities they finish, to learn to be thankful for the good things God has given us, to offer up their day for someone in need, etc.

This journal is for boys 8 (with the help of Mom) to 16 years of age. Your boys will enjoy it and be able to look back on it for inspiration and encouragement!

Available to pre-order here.

Package Special of the Girl’s and Boy’s Journal is here.

The giveaway includes the two books, The Catholic Girl’s Journal and The Catholic Boy’s Journal, and this beautiful Sunflower doily made by Rosie’s talented crochet hook!

What great Christmas gifts they would make so please sign up by making a comment on this post. I will draw the name next Wednesday, October 30th!

(Please continue to keep Rosie in your prayers. It is hard to believe it has been a whole year since she entered the convent. It has been a hard year. Yes, she is doing better but she is not well enough to resume normal living. I would appreciate any prayers sent our way and so does she!)

Rosie and Willoughby

Steve

As I posted earlier, my brother, Steve, unexpectedly passed away at the end of August. It was truly a blow, especially because we weren’t sure the state of his soul…he had a wayward life. (He had made strides in the last year…but we just weren’t sure).

I want to let you in on something to remind you….never, ever give up on prayer…never give up on the virtue of hope!! God hears our prayers.

Two weeks after Steve died, the funeral home in Canada contacted us saying they found something on Steve and they wanted to know what to do with it. This is what they found on him….

I cannot tell you how happy we were to see this! God is good! Remember the promise of Our Lady…. “Take this Scapular. Whosoever dies wearing it shall not suffer eternal fire. It shall be a sign of salvation, a protection in danger and pledge of peace.” There were also 2 St. Benedict medals and a Miraculous Medal attached!

We had Steve shipped from Canada to here in Kansas and buried close to my dad.

The Gallery…. (click on the first picture to view)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Rosary and the Bargain

The month of the Holy Rosary is coming close to its end….

The surest and easiest way to heaven is taking Our Lady’s hand and letting her guide and direct our footsteps. She is the “vehicle” to help us up the laborious climb to the top of the mountain!

Do something special this week to remind your children of her very important role!

And don’t forget the daily Rosary!

12122466_736962259742656_177630410861677038_n-1by Joseph A. Breig

When I get to heaven – as I trust I shall – something very embarrassing is bound to happen. As sure as shooting; somebody who has known me rather too well for comfort on this earth is going to come up to me and say, in a loud voice enough for everybody to hear, “How in the world did you get in here?”

I am not going to answer in words. I am simply going to pull a rosary out of my pocket and dangle it in front of my questioner. That will be my reply; and it will be perfectly true. It will also be true for my family, which I have every reason to hope will be there with me. We will all pull our rosaries out of our pockets and wave them.

I think that we will wave them for all eternity; or at least wear them around our necks for everybody to see. It will save a lot of explaining, and it will give credit where credit is due.

I am not humble enough for public confession of my sins: besides, it would be scandalous; and the readers would be writing to the editor denouncing him for printing such shocking stuff.

I will simply say this: there is a period of my life that I want to forget; and I would still be in it if it weren’t for the rosary.

The rosary is the rope by which I climbed hand over hand out of the pit into which I had fallen.

I started climbing out after I discovered one basic rule for any kind of success in life. The way to get something done is to do it. I will never forget how that realization suddenly popped into my head and transformed me.

Ever since then, I have been getting things done, simply by doing them. And the thing that taught me that lesson was the rosary. I do not remember how or why or when I started saying the rosary daily. But I do remember that doing it was the hardest thing I ever did in my life.

When people say to me now that they just can’t seem to get at it, I chuckle. They’re telling me! They complain about the irregularity of their lives, about visitors dropping in, and whatnot. And I chuckle again.

When I started saying the daily rosary, I was a reporter for a Hearst newspaper in the big city. It was not in the least unusual for me to be out on a story half the night, or three-quarters of the night, or all night.

At any moment during the day, the city editor might answer the telephone, look across the desk at me, and order me to high-ball by automobile, or train or other conveyance to some city or town or crossroads 100, 500, 1000 miles distant.

At any hour of the night, I might be awakened by the telephone and told to dash into the office, or dash somewhere else. As for social and other affairs, I had more than my share of them. But I had discovered that the way to get something done is to do it. I had learned that the way to get the rosary said is to say it. And I said it – and I don’t think anybody ever said it harder.

Meditation? It came as naturally to me as eating glass or swallowing swords. Praying? It was hard, sweaty, ditch-digging heavy labor for me. I was going it alone then; and the going was all uphill. It was all mountain climbing.

More than once, I awoke in the wee hours of the night, still on my knees, with the upper half of my body sprawled over the bed, and the rosary still clutched in my fingers at the second or third decade.
But the way to get something done was to do it; and I wouldn’t allow myself to crawl into bed until the rosary was finished.

I tell all this only in order that the reader may know that I am not one to whom prayer came easily. You say that it is hard for you; I answer that it was hard for me.

Then suddenly, somewhere along the line, I met Father Patrick Peyton, and discovered an additional rule for success. I discovered that whereas it was exceedingly difficult for me to say the rosary alone, it was as easy as rolling off a log to say it with my family.

We were one of the early families in Father Peyton’s Family Rosary Crusade; and what he gave to us when he talked us into it, we wouldn’t trade today for all the Fords and Lincolns in Henry Fords factory for the next thousand years.

I state a simple fact; and you needn’t take it just from me. Ask my wife. Ask the children. Ask the neighbors. Ask our visitors. They’ll all tell you the same thing: that ever since we started the daily family Rosary, and kept it up, our house has been one of the happiest and healthiest homes in the world.

To use a popular jive expression, the place simply jumps with joy. And there were times when it didn’t. There were a great many times when it didn’t. There was a time when the doctor told us we might as well make up our minds to sell our home for whatever we could get and go to Florida, with or without a job, if we didn’t want to see our children dying one by one before our eyes.

He said they simply couldn’t stand the climate in which we were living; and they’d be better off living on bananas under a tree in the south than suffering what they were suffering in the north.

The rosary changed all that; and today our youngsters, everyone of them, can whip their weight in wildcats; and would do it at the drop of a hat if there were any Wildcats in sight.

But that is the least of the blessings that have come to us from the family Rosary. I remember vividly my first conversation with Father Peyton, long before he became world famous as the originator of the family hour on the radio, in which the greatest stars of Broadway and Hollywood donate their talents to popularize the slogan, “The family that prays together, stays together.”

Father Peyton, knitting his brows in the way he has, and speaking in that wonderful Irish brogue which I won’t try to reproduce, told me that, when he was first ordained, he planned to start a crusade for daily mass, communion and the rosary.

The longer he prayed and puzzled over it, the more he became convinced that if he asked for everything at first, he’d get nothing; whereas if he could get people to say the rosary, the rosary would lead them to the other things.
Today I can testify that, in our case at least, he was perfectly right. We have learned that the rosary, if you will just say it, takes care of the full spiritual development of the family.

I would say this – that by far the easiest and least troublesome way of rearing a family of which you can be proud is to institute the family rosary in your home, and keep it up.

It knits the family together with bonds 10,000 times stronger than any that can be forged by merely natural means.

I think that I’ve heard all the objections to the family rosary. Fully half the fathers and mothers who have talked with me about it have shrugged their shoulders helplessly and said that there simply doesn’t seem to be any time of the day when all the members of the family can be brought together in prayer.

The answer to that, of course, is exceedingly simple. If you can’t get all the members of the family together, say the rosary with the members who are present.

Sooner or later, something will happen to make it possible for the others to join in.

The rosary is like that. Give it a chance, and it’ll take care of the problems. The Mother of God can have whatever she wants from her divine Son; and one of the things she wants is Rosary Families.

Mothers have said to me that the smaller members of the family won’t behave during the rosary. What of it? The smaller members of our family won’t behave either.

Between them, our two-year-old Jimmy and eight month old Regina put on something resembling a three ring circus while we are saying the rosary. We don’t interfere. It’s our business to say to say the rosary; it’s theirs to have a circus. God made them that way; and if He doesn’t mind, why should we? We pray above and between their shouts and gurgles, and it works out very well.
I have also heard people say that the antics of the smaller children interfere with their meditations. They interfered with mine, too, until I learned to include the youngsters in the meditation.

Now, while saying the Joyful Mysteries, I look at Regina, cooing and bouncing in her crib, and I think, “Why, Christ was just like that once! He cooed and gurgled too, and waved his arms, and kicked his legs, and rolled over on his stomach, then worked like a Trojan to get turned to his back again.”
Or if the baby is sitting on her mother’s lap, I look at them and realize that the Christ child sat in Mary’s lap too, and clutched at her garments, and tried to pull Himself upright, and swung His hands at her face, and laughed when she smiled at Him.

I think of the fact that He, too, had to be fed; that although He held the universe in the palm of His hand and kept the planets on their courses. He depended on his mother for everything.
Perhaps we are saying the Sorrowful Mysteries. If so, sometimes I look at Jimmy and think how I would feel if he were crucified in front of my eyes. Then I know something about what Mary felt.

I know something, too, about the infinite love of God which caused Him to send His only Son to die for us.

Could I send one of my sons to die in agony for someone who had insulted me? I think of that; and then I am better able to thank God for the redemption.
If we are saying the Glorious Mysteries, I consider often what a moment it will be when all the family rises from the grave and is reunited, nevermore to be parted; when we are all together to stay together, in perfect happiness, forever.

If the happy family is a thing of rollicking joy – and it is – then what must a perfectly happy family in heaven be like! It is very well worth looking forward to. It is very well worth the trouble of saying the daily rosary.
Ten or fifteen minutes a day is what it takes; and eternity is what it purchases. I wasn’t born yesterday; and I’m not passing up a bargain like that.

Visit Finer Femininity on Facebook

Join me on Pinterest

catholic-home

2521296bd78052045c27b0fd73b10658

14581544_580560218812659_8596451532595379954_n-1countryhartstichline6finer-fem-quote-for-the-day-fall2-1

“Be patient with everyone, but above all with yourself…do not be disheartened by your imperfections, but always rise up with fresh courage.”
Introduction the the Devout Life― St. Francis de Sales

14344292_571688259699855_6937754797558886176_n-1

countryhartstichline6

2-5-1

I used this book when my children were young. It was a valuable tool in helping them to incorporate True Devotion to Mary by St. Louis de Montfort into their little lives…. “PREFACE: This Marian program has but one purpose, to imbue the little ones with a genuine devotion to Mary. It is a copying of Mary- a way of life. It is the De Montfort Method simplified for young minds.” Available here. (afflink)

51jrsgqwhhl-_sx334_bo1204203200_-1

countryhartstichline6

A sermon for your day!

countryhartstichline6

Beautiful Handcrafted Rosaries and Rosary Bracelets at my Meadows of Grace Shoppe!

Wire wrapping is one of the oldest techniques for making jewelry or rosaries by hand.

In wire wrapping, rosaries are made using jewelry wire to make components.

Frequently, in this approach, a wire is bent into a loop or other decorative shape and then the wire is wrapped around itself to finish the wire component making that loop or decorative shape permanent.

Because of this technique for wrapping wire around itself this craft is called wire wrapping.

Not only is it quite beautiful but it makes the rosaries sturdy and durable.

 

 

 

 

Save

Save

Save