Thursday, December 31, 2009

Mother of God and Epiphany

My Companions: For what shall we pray as this year, this decade, draws to a close?  Let me suggest that we review the past year and praise our God for the glory of life we have experienced through out this past year (looking back at the words and pictures of this blog archive, my heart heats-up with gratitude and love for all we have experienced together in prayer).  Let's remember all our companions, especially those who transitioned before us this year to another dimension of holiness; rejoice in our participation in the Communion of Saints.  Let's resolve to do our small part to bring peace to our families, our neighborhoods, our world.  Let's seek forgiveness and offer forgiveness for our acts of commission or omission that, even in small ways, blocked the growth of God's kingdom in our midst.  Let's take some time to quietly rest in the presence of our God who is nearer to us than we are to ourselves!

Please pray with me for my friend and companion, Patrick O'Donnell, and his family.  The brain cancer returned and Pat is at the Hospice of St John in Lakewood.

Birthdays: Lindsay Ross (12/27), Alan Kobza (1/1/10), Sue Ross (1/1/10)

Keeping-in-touch: Marge and I made our annual trip to the movie theater and saw Invictus.  At the movie-house we serendipitously encountered soccer-parent friends, Pam and Brad, and enjoyed a delightful evening.  We've enjoyed catching-up with the active lives of many who sent us Christmas letters (I was a slacker this year and didn't write or send cards).  We welcomed the opportunity to meet Lacey Kobza's friend, Chris and visit with Grandma Kobza.

The Readings
The Readings for New Years: Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God

The Readings for Sunday: The Epiphany of the Lord

Comments on the Readings, Epiphany: Fr. Foley: “The child’s weakness shows what God has in mind as the answer to evil. Tender, unfearing openness to love."
My Comments: Luke tells us that the shepherds found Jesus lying in a manger; Matthew tells us that the Magi followed a star and encountered a greedy, dominating King before adoring Jesus in Bethlehem.  Mary, the Theotokos: Mother of God, kept all these things in her heart.  Hopefully we will learn, more fully, to find God in all things as we enter a new year, a new decade.

May the peace of Christ be with each of you.


Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

My Companions: Let's all reflect on the absolute wonder that "God became a baby!" We thank the Lord for healing for Lori Beth. And we praise Our Lord for all the life given to us.

Birthdays: Chuck Olson (12/21), Judi (Lay) Cole (12/22), Julie (Lay) Schnitzer (12/22)

Keeping-in-touch: We've kept busy watching Nate and closing the year.

The Readings

Comments on the Readings: Fr. Foley: “ be fully human means allowing enough room inside ourselves to let God and others in."
My Comments: "Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen." Let us, too, glorify and praise Our God for all we have seen!

May the peace of Christ be with each of you.


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Fourth Sunday of Advent

My Companions: My daughter, Lori Beth, fell on the stair and broke her tailbone.  Please pray for her quick recovery as she has many responsibilities with Nathan.  I have a prayer of thanksgiving that Tony was called back to work at the Railroad... lay-offs are such a drag!  We're also delighted and thankful to enjoy Kelly DePriest, our neighbor who is home for a visit from her work in the Peace Corps.  I also suggest we pray especially for those who do not experience peace, at this holiday season; that they may be filled with the compassion of our Lord.
Birthdays: no birthdays; I missed Mark & Sue Ross' Anniversary last week 12/12 (help me when I'm missing events)

Keeping-in-touch: I had an opportunity to work with traditional undergraduates and film some of their work... an opportunity to learn/relearn how to use the camera.  Last we enjoyed some good time with Nathan, we made some headway on the Emmaus Project (Immaculate Conception Parish joined our Partners) and we partied with the RS/PL College Faculty.  Marge had a babyshower for Lori Beth and Nathan.  We witnessed the wonderful generosity of Nativity Families who responded graciously to the Giving Tree project that Connie organizes so well!!

The Readings:

Comments on the Readings: Fr. Foley: “Watch Mary hasten to her cousin’s house, a long trip, on foot, over dirt and sand and rocks, under the hot, hot sun (Gospel). She does not have to be queenly and coddled in order to mother of The One."
My Comments: The little town of Bethlehem, a "nothing place," became a great place of the birth of the Savior, may we come to know that our simple persons can truely become great when we open ourselves to God's gracious love.

May the peace of Christ be with each of you.


Friday, December 11, 2009

Third Sunday of Advent -- Rejoice in the Lord always

My Companions: My sisters have asked for prayers for Judi's daughter and Mar's sister-in-law (see comment).  And my friend, Randy, had some surgery so as always we have many concerns and always much for which to give thanks and praise.
Birthdays: ? none

Keeping-in-touch: The cold chilled our bones but we're keeping busy: Nana with Nate and Papa John with building the Emmaus Network.  We're also hosting and attending parties. 
The Readings:
Comments on the Readings: Fr. Foley: “Let it sing. Let your life be what it is: God’s joyous, interleaving, always consonant melody, sounding outwards in deepest joy.  
My Comments:  The disciples of John asked, "What should I do?"  Let me recommend some time in meditation... a friend gave me a wonderful book that has helped my preparation this Advent: Christian Meditation: Experiencing the Presence of God, a guide to contemplation by James Finley.  This could be a great gift to give yourself.
May the peace of Christ be with each of you.
John                                                                            Our Lady of Guadalupe

Friday, December 4, 2009

Second Sunday of Advent

My Companions: "The Lord has done great things for us!"  Let us pray with gratitude; I'm especially thankful for the support I received to continue The Emmaus Institute Project.  But I also need to ask your prayers for some companions, who ask not to be identified, but suffer from oppression: some economic, some emotional.  Also please pray with me for teachers in the inner city schools: may the reasources be given to them to do their work for God's Kingdom.

Birthdays: Kathy DePriest 12/3

Keeping-in-touch: These cold days make me so thankful for our warm home!  Nana's had a wonderful time helping to take care of Nate... it seems we watch him grow.  We're having a gathering of Ignatian Faculty Scholars this week; it will be good to tell and listen to our stories as we share a meal.

The Readings:

Comments on the Readings: Fr. Foley: “Advent, the quiet time, the great contrast with our culture’s turbulent consumer-bonanza... Christ is gestating right now in our hearts, just as you and I did in our mother’s womb."
My Comments:  Maybe our economic troubles take the "plastic luster" out of this "shopping season," maybe I'm growing old and don't care much for "stuff," or maybe I already have too much "stuff"... whatever!  I just feel fortunate to have focused my preparation for Christmas on encountering friends: listening to stories and sharing visions... and working to quiet myself and listen.

May the peace of Christ be with each of you.