Thursday, April 09, 2020

We Are a People of Hope

Wow, what an amazing turn of events over the last few months or more.

Pope Francis has called us to pray for the Church in China for this month's intention. Our brothers and sisters there are suffering in silence since virtually nothing gets in or out of the country without the Communist Party's approval (think Great Firewall of China).

We here in the West are essentially shut in with little to no direction on what the future holds.

Many of us have no more income to pay for our rent, mortgage, loans, food, and utilities.

And yet, we are a People of Hope.

We have had, and have, an opportunity to spend time at the foot of the Cross. To truly live our Lent!

We can take this time to be stripped of all distractions, worries, and things while there. To be still and listen to what the Holy Spirit has to say. To take in the desert and all of its hidden beauty.

It is in this silence that we can discover that we are truly valuable to Him Who Loves Us.

Look at the birds in the sky; they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are not you more important than they?

Matthew 6:26

Our Lord goes on to lecture about how God the Father will take care of us no matter what. He finishes with:

… seek first the kingdom [of God] and his righteousness, and all these things will be given you besides.

Matthew 6:33

As a People of Hope, we _believe_ that promise will be fulfilled. We _trust_ Jesus at His Word.

If we don't, then we have work to do to open ourselves up to Him who loves us because He _is_ a Man of His Word. Truly.


John Everett

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Husband and Father, St. Joseph Held His Own in the Face of Adversity and Death

When we look to what little we find in the Scripture about Our Lord's Foster Father, we don't find a lot.

But what is there speaks mountains to the heart.

Jesus promises us:

I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you. John 14:18

How deep was St. Joseph's faith that he heard in his heart the whispers to leave Bethlehem given what was coming from Herod: Certain death for the Lord?

Our Lord promises _us_ that He will not leave _us_ orphaned.

Well, here we stand with the world in tumult and uncertainty abounding.

What does it all mean?

While there may be the occasional few that can see the big picture most of us remain in the dark.

Because of that, we must trust in the Lord. We must trust that He will protect us, guide us, and prepare us for whatever comes.

He did with St. Joseph. He will with us.

We need only do the following:

  • Pray the Rosary daily!
    • Ponder those mysteries!
    • Pick up the Scriptures to delve in deeper
  • Pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet daily
  • Spend time in quiet meditation listening for Him
    • This one takes much time and patience
    • Look to the Fathers and Mothers of the Desert for guidance if need-be
    • Sit with St. Mary Magdalene in the Garden when the Lord whispered, "Mary" and she recognized Him (John 20:16)
  • Open the Scriptures and choose the first spot the eyes rest on the pray over
  • Go to Confession
  • Adore the Lord
    • Make a Spiritual Communion
  • Keep a journal

Since many of us now have a lot of time on our hands, besides the above reach out to loved ones. Reach out and love them. Hug them virtually and spiritually.

And most especially, reconcile with them. Be humble. Make the first steps.

There is no personal hurt greater than the Love of Jesus Christ poured out for us in the Blood and Water from His side. Open the heart, mind, body, and spirit to the cleansing healing He has to offer.

Start with praying for those that hurt us. The Lord and Our Lady will inspire the next steps.

Now is the time for a deepening of prayer as there are many who without faith are terrified and seeking shelter and reassurance that only the Lord can provide.

Let us pray together through the intercession of St. Joseph and Our Lady …


John Everett

Feast of St. Joseph

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Our Hunger for Love

How many times do we have a reveal of God the Father expressing His Love for His Son in Scripture? The one that always seems to come to mind is in the Jordan when St. John the Baptist is baptizing Him.

Today's Breviary reading, Tuesday Week III, is from the first letter of St. John:

14 Moreover, we have seen and testify that the Father sent his Son as savior of the world.

15 Whoever acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God remains in him and he in God. 1 John 4:14-15

Jesus is indeed the Son of God and the Lord of our lives (1 Corinthians 12:3).

When contemplating the Father's words of love and pride it draws one out to realize that there is a need within us for same.

Our Love Languages

So many of us have lived with little to no expression of love in our families. Many times there's an assumption that the beloved just "knows" they are loved.

The reality though is nowhere near that.

We need to be loved in the way we are wired for love.

The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman is an excellent way for us to learn how we need to be loved to "feel" it and "know" it.

  • Gifts
  • Quality Time
  • Words of Affirmation
  • Acts of Service
  • Physical Touch

Clearly, God the Father expresses His Love in words of affirmation here! ;)

Our Love Tanks

In a sense, we have two Love Tanks:

  1. Space filled by God's Love
  2. Space filled by those that love us

The first can be filled by anything but God's Love while the second may or may not be filled at all.

So where does that leave us with today's reading?

That God, Who is Love, is already resident in us. That we need to trust that He is truly present.

Getting to Know Love

How do we get to know His Presence and Love?

The best way is to receive Him in the Holy Eucharist and take the time to be silent with Him after receiving Him and then after Mass for at least five minutes.

The next best way is to sit with Him in Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament or while He resides in the tabernacle. We need to learn to adore Him and come to silence in mind, body, and spirit for He and His Holy Spirit speak in gentle whispers.

Another is to spend time with Him in the Scriptures or take the time to come to silence for 10-30 minutes each day to learn to listen to him.

Once that first tank starts to fill everything that blocks it from being so will come to light. This is _not_ an easy road to follow.

It requires much patience and perseverance in the face of our wounds, brokenness, and selfishness.

If the pain is such that it can't be handled alone then reach out to a professional. Most cities have Listening Centres where we can drop in and speak with a Psychologist.

Humility. It's required for this journey. Reaching out for help is in tandem with our reaching out to the Lord for His Help!

The Goal

Ultimately, what is the goal?

It is to know and love God and to know His Love for us.

To do so, we must humbly accept His guidance to remove all blocks, bitter roots, unforgiveness, possessions, and anything else that would stand between Him and His Love.

That leads us to the second tank.

For it to start filling _we_ must start to change _our_ ways.

There is no blame game in love only taking responsibility for who we are and what we do.

A start is to learn the Five Love Languages and share them. Work with loved ones to discover their Love Languages, don't be surprised if they are not the same, and work on loving them.

Forgiveness. We need to forgive those who have hurt us just as the Lord does each and every time we turn away from Him in sin.

And finally, the key in all of this is: Love your neighbour _as_ yourself. We can't love and be loved by others if we don't first love ourselves. Don't forget, we also need to _forgive_ ourselves!

So, how do we do that?

The answers are in the Whispers of the Holy Spirit within us and Our Lady's always willing arms of Love. :)

Oh, and visiting the Confessional as often as we need to in order for Our Lord's cleansing Blood and Water to do their work within us.


John Everett

Monday, February 17, 2020

Like a Kid in a Candy Store Post Conversion

This morning's Breviary reading (Monday Week II) is from Jeremiah:

When I found your words, I devoured them;

your words were my joy, the happiness of my heart,

Because I bear your name,

LORD, God of hosts. JEREMIAH 15:16

Around the time of my conversion I was working as a night auditor at one of the bigger hotels in the city.

The audit took a couple of hours though sometimes longer if the bar got a little "busy" outside.

Once finished, there was a lot of time left over. And, it was quiet.

So, out came the Rosary but most especially out came The Catechism Explained by Fr. Francis Spirago. The book was a gift from a Cistercian priest during a stay at his monastery (I spent many a Spring there).

To say that my mind and heart was voracious was an understatement. ;)

Read, pray, study. Read, pray, study.

This was the cycle for most of the first three years or so post conversion.

One Saturday morning near the end of my shift the hotel owner's son and his wife came in the front doors.

Being that it was usually busy I was at the front desk. The previous night's reading, prayer, and study was particularly neat so there was a "glow" if you will. ;)

After the morning pleasantries they walked away and I heard his wife say to him, "What does that guy have to be so happy about?"

… [it is] no longer I, but Christ [who] lives in me. Galatians 2:20

Indeed, as our faith develops and we discover more and more "candy" to dive in to, we can be overly focused on devouring it.

The moment that appetite became tempered was in a discussion with a fellow Catholic Christian about what they were reading at the time. This was probably three years or so from the Easter Vigil.

Their response was, "John, I realized that I needed to start to put into practice everything I was reading. So, I stopped the reading and started to practice it!"

Indeed. :)

SUGGESTION: Take up journaling. It can really help to process everything.


John Everett

Monday, December 02, 2019

Be Still and Know … I Love You.

The second Psalm's quip in this morning's Monday Week I prayer:

The Father's voice proclaimed: "This is my beloved Son" (Matthew 3:17)

How many of us crave those words from our own father? How many of us remain devoid of loving and kind words at all?

Yet, God the Father made it clear that He loves is Son.

So, somehow, it is possible that He loves us too?!?

Be still and know that I am God (Psalm 46:11)

As one who grew up fatherless that empty space _can_ be filled. To some degree perhaps by one who would become a Foster Father as did happen with me.

But, it takes a lot of patient prayer in the Quiet and also healing before we can hear those whispered words:

You are my beloved son …

You are my beloved daughter …

He must love us! He gave up His only Son to break the bonds of sin and death.

Truly, we need to somehow learn to _believe_ those words and actions and _trust_ that we will not be betrayed by Him, His Son, and His Holy Spirit that resides within us.

That somehow is found in the Mass. It is found in learning to live the Lord's Sacrifice on the Altar and receiving His Body and Blood as often as we can.

It is also found in the Sacrament of Reconciliation/Confession. When we open our heart to the Most Precious Blood that pours down upon us in absolution after we confess our sins, we call it "Soul Laundry" in our family, we can be healed and our blinders/blind spots peeled away.

We have the tools. We just need to use them! :)


John Everett

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

In the Face of Persecution

We have so many stories of men and women who have gone before us giving the ultimate sacrifice: Their lives.

We named one of our sons after such a one: Maximillian Kolbe.

Breviary Wednesday, Week II Morning Prayer quip for Psalm 97:

This psalm foretells a world-wide salvation and that peoples of all nations will believe in Christ (Saint Athanasius).

Then, our reading for this morning:

35 What will separate us from the love of Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword?
36 As it is written:
“For your sake we are being slain all the day;
we are looked upon as sheep to be slaughtered.”
37 No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us.
38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things,* nor future things, nor powers,
39 nor height, nor depth,* nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:35-39

Today, it seems, we stand on the cusp of history repeating itself. It is said that one ignores one's history at one's own peril and sure enough, today that is very true.

And yet, we know that somehow no matter what happens that our Lord embraces us. He gives us all we need to face any moment with courage and hope.

With the prayers of Our Lady, the Martyrs, and the strength Our Lord gives us we shall triumph. If not in this life, definitely the next!

Our prayers go out to all of our Christian Brothers and Sisters facing the Martyrdom of Blood and/or White Martyrdom in the day to day.


John Everett

Monday, November 04, 2019

Where We Belong and Why We’re Here

Each Psalm and Canticle in the Breviary has a little quip at the start.

Today’s quip, from the first Psalm Monday, Week III is the following:

For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the one that is to come. Heb 13:14

Psalm 84 is the first prayer of the morning the quip is tied to.

Blessed the man who finds refuge in you,

in their hearts are pilgrim roads.

As they pass through the Baca valley,*

they find spring water to drink.

The early rain covers it with blessings.

They will go from strength to strength*

and see the God of gods on Zion. Psalm 84: 6-8

Lately, with all of the political angst going on here in North America and abroad, and thus the requisite distractions as part of discernment, it' seems that we’ve come to lose sight of the “why” we’re here.

In many cases we’re being told that we are no longer relevant and should have no voice in the Public Square.

So, _why_ are we here?

We know that our ultimate home is with the Lord. The above makes that pretty clear.

But, what about the _here_?

We tend to make things so very complicated.

But the reality is really quite simple:

  • To Love
  • To Be Loved

The quip for the second Psalm is apt:

A new theme now inspires their praise of God; they belong to the lamb Rev 14:3

Indeed. We belong to Him Who first Loved Us. Loved us into existence. Then, Loved us into Redemption.

Our response should be simple: To love, and allow ourselves to be loved.

Pax! :)

John Everett

Feast of St. Charles Borromeo

Wednesday, October 09, 2019

The Heart of Stone

We've started praying the Liturgy of the Hours morning and evening prayer as part of a discernment process Lucille and I are going through.

There are times when it's so mundane, almost painful, that it becomes an offering out of love and duty.

Sometimes, there is a moment where clarity ensues and somehow the Holy Spirit can get a message through the stone into the softer parts of the heart. ;)

Yesterday morning's reading, Tuesday Week III, was from the first letter of Saint John 4:12-15:
12 No one has ever seen God. Yet, if we love one another, God remains in us, and his love is brought to perfection in us.

13 This is how we know that we remain in him and he in us, that he has given us of his Spirit.

14 Moreover, we have seen and testify that the Father sent his Son as savior of the world.

15 Whoever acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God remains in him and he in God.
The reading reminds me of St. Paul in 1st Corinthians 12:3:
...[N]o one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the holy Spirit.
God in us ...

I'm not sure about you, but one thing that became pretty clear while meditating on that reading was my heart being more a rock than solid flesh. :(


Because, the reality stated above, that is God in us, has not really registered in my stony heart.

St. Anthony of the Desert, St. Bruno, St. Teresa of Avila, and St. John of the Cross come to mind and heart of folks who managed to allow the Lord's Blood and Water to slowly cleanse away the stone leaving a heart of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26).

So much to learn and let go of. ;)


John Everett
Feast of Denis, Bishop and Martyr, and Companions, Martyrs

Monday, October 16, 2017

Morning Prayer Offereing

The following is the first thing I do every morning before proceeding into the day.

Start and end with the Sign of the Cross.

Consecration to Our Lady - Short Form

Queen of the Most Holy Rosary
I renew my consecration to you and to your Immaculate Heart this day.
Please accept me my dear mother
And use me as you wish to accomplish your designs upon the world.
I'm all yours my Mother and my Queen
And all that I have is yours!

Consecration to Our Lord

Oh my Jesus
Through the Immaculate Heart of Mary
I offer you all of my prayers, works, joys, and sufferings of this day.
For all the intentions of Your Most Sacred Heart
In union with the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world
In reparation for all of our sins
And, for the intentions of the Holy Father this month.

Hail Mary

Hail Mary, full of grace the Lord is with you
Blessed are you among women
And blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus
Holy Mary
Mother of God
Pray for us sinners now
And at the hour of our death.

St. Michael Prayer

St. Michael the Archangel
Defend us in this day of battle.
Be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares for the Devil.
May God rebuke him we humbly pray
And do you oh prince of the heavenly host
By the Divine Power of God
Cast into Hell Satan and all evil spirits
That prowl about the world for the ruination of souls.


I conclude with a short silent contemplation then:
Thank you Jesus!
I love you Jesus!


John E.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

We're Here! :)

We are still kicking, just really busy with our family life, home schooling, and business.

We lost our site to a script attack of some sort a while back with our backups being somewhat corrupt.

We've managed to salvage the content to some degree. Now, it is just a matter of finding the time to put it all back together and post it somewhere.



Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Dominic: Our Little Intercessor from Above

From the beginning, when we lost Dominic through late miscarriage in October of 2010, I have always thought of him as our little Saint in heaven.

For some reason, many people refer to babies dying within the womb as angels. I believe this is a misrepresentation of who our child is within the womb. Angels are angels. They are messengers of God. They are not human.

I think Dominic and all babies who die within the womb can be ‘compared’ to an angel because they do send us a message like our heavenly angels do. In other words, they can act like a messenger so to speak.

Since a few months ago, I have been writing in a journal dedicated to Dominic. I write letters to him almost every day.

A couple of weeks ago, our oldest son woke up with a very stiff neck. Right away, I thought it was rather odd. I thought about calling for a doctor’s appointment but instead, I decided to wait and see thinking he may have just slept the wrong way. Later that same day, I took his temperature and he had a high fever.

We realized that there was a need to take him in to get his condition checked. Thankfully, the doctor did not think it was meningitis but requested blood tests just to be on the safe side.

Before going to bed, I wrote to Dominic in my journal. I wrote asking Dominic to ask Jesus to help his brother get better. The next morning Raymond had no fever but his neck was still pretty stiff. Raymond told me that he had a dream. He said Dominic was in his dream and he had fluffy, curly hair. I asked him if Dominic talked to him. He said he did not remember but a little later he said that Dominic told him, “I love you” in his dream.

I thought wow, coincidence? No, I believe this is not a coincidence. Did Dominic really intercede for us? Yes, I believe he did. I told this to a family member who said he has asked for Dominic’s intercession as well and whatever he asked for was granted.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church talks more in detail about the communion of saints and more specifically, the intercession of the saints. In regards to the intercession of the saints, the CCC stated:

Being more closely united to Christ, those who dwell in heaven fix the     whole Church more firmly in holiness… They do not cease to intercede with the Father for us, as they proffer the merits which they acquired on earth through the one mediator between God and men, Christ Jesus… So by their fraternal concern is our weakness greatly helped.

Furthermore, the CCC added, “Do not weep, for I shall be more useful to you after my death and I shall help you then more effectively than during my life” (p. 205).

The latter are two very powerful statements. They can truly be consoling to those who are grieving a loss of a loved one.

I am so proud of our little Saint in heaven. We miss him terribly yet what a gift God has given us in his short life here on earth.

Lucille Everett

Monday, December 26, 2011

Our Second Christmas without Dominic

Last year, we spent our first Christmas without the baby we lost through miscarriage at almost 18 weeks gestation. Like many around this time of year, instead of being a joyful event, Christmas turns into a burden that we don’t necessarily fully look forward to but instead dread.

Grief overpowered me last year and this year it was still there at a different level. As much as I desired my  heart to be more joyful this time of year, my heart just was what it was because someone was missing. People have many different ways of dealing with grief. Some may choose to ignore it or deny it, some may set it aside, some may resort to bitterness and anger, and some choose to deal with it head on. How do you deal with grief?

The neat thing is that even though we may be stuck in grief, it is difficult to ignore the fact that Jesus is now with us as a baby spreading peace all over the world. Mary desires with all her heart for us to touch him and hold him. He is the Saviour of the world. She wants us to draw near to him and weep with joy.

Before Christmas, I was drawn to listen to an old cassette I bought on one of my two trips to Medjugorje. The cassette is called “The Story of a Wounded Womb” by Sister Emmanuel. One of the things that Sister Emmanuel talks about is about a man she met who was in deep distress and hopeless. His life was on the brink of being turned upside down. This man was in Medjugorje, received a tape about a man named Albert who made a deal with Our Lady. The deal was he would give all of his burdens to Our Lady and in return he would pray for Our Lady’s intentions.

He met Sister Emmanuel and told her about all of his hardships. He said he was going to give Our Lady all of his problems. The next day, he was looking for Sister Emmanuel to talk to her before leaving. He was weeping for joy because he prayed for hours for Our Lady’s intentions with his heart. He told Sister Emmanuel that he received a telegram saying he got his job back after being fired. His wife did not want a divorce anymore and his health was not so serious as to require surgery.

What would happen if we all gave Our Lady our burdens? In exchange, what if we prayed for all of Our Lady’s intentions? Perhaps we can start with, “Mary, I give my burdens to you and I will offer up this rosary for your intentions…” Amen.

Merry Christmas everyone!

May God richly bless you and give you the graces you need to deal with all of your burdens.

Lucille Everett

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

9 months after 17 week Miscarriage


I wrote this in July of this year but I am posting it now with a few changes:

I last posted on this subject in January so it has been a while. A lot of growing has been happening since then and the pain in my heart has softened some from being rock hard so there is some improvement. I am smiling more and actually laughing sometimes. I am really learning more and more to be more present to my children and husband. Catherine Doherty liked to call it the duty of the moment. For me, sometimes the duty of the moment means soaking in what my children are saying and really listen to what they are saying for example. It is so easy as parents to sometimes say, “Uh huh, uh huh”, when we seem to hear some things over and over.

Another big area I am growing in since our losing our tiny baby Dominic at 17 weeks is trust in God and in the people around me. Ironically, as I was reading an excerpt from my journal, in July of 2010, I wrote something that my husband John had told me. He told me that in order for me to go in the next room of my spiritual growth, I need to take a leap of faith. I need to let go of all the things that cling or stick to me re: wounds from the past. He further said that the next room for me involves abandoning myself to him and to God thus letting myself fall back, wait and trust that someone will catch me on the other side.

I elaborated and wrote that it is much easier for me or anyone to act or operate according to what my wounds are saying rather than facing my fears of a wound being touched and then to embrace the suffering if it comes.

John then suggested meditating on the gospel of John when Jesus was arrested. In this gospel, Jesus makes it clear to the soldier’s that He is going by His own will to suffer for our sins. He had total trust.

This Gospel reading also reminds me of the total trust and obedience of Abraham when asked to sacrifice his only Son. The story of Abraham is the perfect pre re-enactment of the future death of Jesus but without the death of Abraham’s son Isaac. For Abraham it was the ultimate test of which he passed with flying colors. He loved and total trust in God. Are we able and willing to trust God to this extreme?

The Divine Mercy Chaplet has been a daily practice for us since losing Dominic. I wrote how this came about in a previous post. “Jesus, I trust in You!” is what it says below the Divine Mercy Image. I believe the more we say this prayer, the more Jesus is teaching us about trust and His Infinite Mercy.

Lord, Have Mercy on Us! Help us and teach us how to trust in you completely.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Tenderness and the Heart Broken Open

St. Monica prayed and waited for the conversion of her son, St. Augustine, for _decades_. We look to her for perseverance in prayer no matter the cost.

When a deep conversion and eventual release of the heart takes place in one that we love it can be very tempting to want to draw this new experience of the other’s heart out as much as possible and as soon as possible.

However, just as it is when one has not eaten for a very long time and we must patiently eat very small portions, we must be patient and tender with our beloved and wait at their side during the process of the heart’s opening.

If we rush things we can end up causing our beloved’s heart to close back up and withdraw. Or, we may get lost in our selfish desire to open that heart up all the quicker.

Where is this coming from? Well, we all know that to a lessor or greater extent we all have our history of being hurt with the possibility of developing some very elaborate defenses and coping mechanisms depending on how extreme things were.

One of the most difficult things for those of us that have been deeply wounded in the past after getting married and living with that one person day after day is to let go and totally trust our spouse.

To let go so thoroughly that the heart is completely revealed to the other . . . nothing is held back. The ultimate in vulnerability.

Now, given that our spouse probably has their own history to deal with, again with protection mechanisms and coping mechanisms, it becomes all the harder to open up our heart to the other and be _totally_ vulnerable with them.

I mean, how could we since we sense that there is something within their own heart that they are holding back?

Yet our Lord makes it so clear through St. Paul in Ephesians 5 that we as men are called to do just that _over and over and over and over again_!

We are called to make continual sacrifices on behalf of our wife and child(ren). We are called to forgo our own pains, struggles, and selfish hurts to be totally vulnerable _to them_.

If we lose sight of our calling to be completely open and sacrificing our lives for our wife then we miss the opportunity to make an offer of love for her healing.

Day after day, week after week, month after month, and year after year . . . just as St. Monica made continual sacrifice and prayer for her son we offer our sacrifices to the Lord through Our Lady for our wife.

In the end, after all of that, the Lord may pleasantly surprise both of us with an amazing gift of healing that produces an openness of the heart that is gift beyond all imagination.

Indeed, there is Resurrection after the Passion and Death on the Cross!

John Everett

Memorial of the Apparition Michael the Archangel

Catholic Saints of the Day