Monday, December 9, 2013

Second P - Prepare and the Feast of the Immaculate Conception


Are you prepared for the birth of Jesus? I'm not. I am a bit side-tracked, but I do know how to get back on track! Ask Mary. Ask Our Blessed Mother to send us reminders that Advent is the time for preparing for the great celebration: the birth of Our Savior, the long-awaited Messiah. Mary will lead us to the Scriptures, where we read, pray, and reflect on the Word of God. Take time to ponder the readings of the day that Holy Mother Church offers us in the liturgical cycle. The Holy Spirit inspired those writings and He will lead you to a deep and thoughtful understanding of His words.

Here is a friend of mine with her son from a number of years ago. It could be you today with a son(s) or daughter(s) or grandchild, making cookies for Mary on her feast day. Below you will see how beautifully they came out. Whether beautiful or shabby chic, they are cookies to honor the best mother in the world. Don't expect 

perfection from children. Do expect creativity and lots of love!
Share your cookies with others. Cheer someone up who otherwise would be blue. Bring the children around to visit an elderly neighbor who can't get out often. Don't stay too long, but long enough to make them smile and leaves some cookies.


We can't always prepare well, but we can always do some things with great love. Whatever you do, great or small do it with great love. (A paraphrase from Mother Teresa of Calcutta.)

These cookies were made with lots of love by 7th grade girls. There is lots of creativity and love for M, Mary, Mother, Mine.

Christmas Prayer

Hail and blessed be the hour and the moment, when the Son of God was born of the most, pure virgin Mary at midnight in Bethlehem in the piercing cold. At that vouchsafe, Oh my God, to hear my prayer and grant my desire through the Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ and His most, blessed Mother. Amen

Advent Blessings

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Do You Have A Plan For Advent?

Sunday, December 1, is the First Sunday of Advent. Do you have a plan for yourself and your family? 

Personal Prayer: 5 Minutes of                        Silence  

 A friend said to me recently as we were listening to Gounod’s Ave Maria, while background talking was going on, “I just dislike it when a beautiful piece of music is being played or sung, and people are talking their way through it. It takes the soul time to quiet down and let the music sink in. There are so many distractions which prevent the music from affecting the soul.” I agreed with her. Beautiful  music has a way of quieting the soul and when the soul is quiet, we can experience the piece of music more fully than when it is disturbed by the many distractions of our everyday environment.

It is the same way with prayer, even more so. Finding five minutes can be very difficult for silent prayer, but the rewards are rich. Learning to settle the soul and wait for the Lord, deepens our relationship with Him immeasurably. "But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who who sees in secret will reward you." Matt. 6:6.

This Advent season begin with the first P, silent prayer. Find five minutes for silence, start with one minute if you must, but give the gift of silence to Our Lord. You will not regret it, and I am willing to wager you will start looking for ways to extend the five minutes to ten. Where can you find five minutes for silent prayer?

  • Before the rest of the family gets up. 
  • Before or after shopping if you are by yourself. You can even visit Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament if a local church is nearby and open.
  • After the children have gone to bed, if they are young and you have some time to yourself before you head to bed.
  • If your children are older or you have some older ones to watch the younger ones, schedule 5 minutes for prayer. While the children nap or have quiet time may be ideal in many homes.
  • Look at your own day, you know better than anyone where you can carve out 5 minutes for silent prayer. If you start, you won't regret it. I promise you.

There is a depth in our prayer life that we can not reach, if we do not  learn to love silence. I am not saying in the world we live in, silence is easy. However, for mothers, for fathers, for those called to guide and form the young,  there are treasures waiting to be given, but they are only given in silence. This Advent begin a deeper participation in the graces of the season by including silent prayer in your plan. 

Tomorrow, the second P