Monday, November 28, 2005

Word from Adoration

Arid. Parched.

Empty of consolation.

A struggle to remain even remotely focused.

A need to keep making an act of my will, over and over and over again for the Lord.

A challenge to remain faithful to coming to visit Him in the Most Blessed Sacrament.

A call to recognize Him there despite my struggles.

A blessing to rely on faith alone!

Pax vobis,


Friday, November 25, 2005

True Healing from Abuse Starts in the Heart

We have heard and seen some a great number of people speaking about their experiences of being abused at the hands of some of our priests and religious.

We have also heard of a number of these victims who have, either alone or as a group, retained lawyers with the intent to sue whichever diocese that they were in at the time of their being abused.

As a former victim of abuse, I really question this. Why? Because, I know how difficult and arduous the journey towards healing is. I know how deep the struggle is to break free of being a victim and "just surviving" into living life and true freedom in Jesus Christ.

It takes a lot of work, an honest and blunt commitment with the self, and an even more painful and difficult step to forgive those who have abused us. This step is integral to becoming whole again. It is also the call of Jesus to forgive those who have hurt us before we can be forgiven. So, how can the forgiveness and healing process be brought about when embroiled in bringing up before the courts the terrible events of the abusive past?

Again, given my experience, this endevour would only succeed in driving the wounds that were a result of the abuse deeper into one's heart, mind, spirit, and soul. This, in turn would make the healing process that much more painful and difficult.

Ultimately, I could not put a price, a dollar value, on what happened to me. And, ultimately, what I yearn for is to hear the sincere request by those who have abused me to forgive them. It would be so refreshing to let them know that I have indeed forgiven them. All I would need to know is that they have realized that what they did to me was wrong.

In the healing process though, this last point is not that important. What is important, and the whole healing process is contingent upon it, is that the process must start in the heart! It is the heart that is the footstool of the soul into this world. It is the heart where one must learn to deal with the wounded emotions that heal last. It is there, that one must learn to discipline the mind and the thoughts that would tear one away from the extreme pain of the healing process. It is the heart where Jesus wants to reside.

"Look, I am standing at the door, knocking." Revelations 3:20
For those of us who have been abused, it is the heart that we must discover! We must discover it so we can open it to Jesus!!!

It is in the heart where we will realize that His Most Sacred Heart also beats with ours, bears our wounds, and as we will discover within the healing process, our heart is nestled within His!

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us and heal us!

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us and envelop us!

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us and consume us with the fire of Your Love!

Pax vobis,


By the way, after reading this, does the bishop's Zero Tolerance policy really work towards healing and forgiveness???

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

My Birthday, Feast of the Presentation of Our Lady, and Pitou's first Sonogram (Ultrasound)

What a day!

When I was younger, birthdays were never a real big deal. With my Grandmother there was an exception as she would bake us a cake and make a bit of a fuss. At home though, we received a gift with pretty much no fanfare.

It is understandable considering most of our family time was spent tearing each other apart.

Today, Lucille, Anne-Marie, my Dad, and some people in our office made a big fuss. Since meeting, and eventually getting married to Lucille, birthdays have become a big fuss. As you might tell by my wording in this paragraph, I am still, after almost 3 years of marriage, having a hard time with it.

What brings great pain to my heart is how my reaction, or lack thereof, to all the fuss causes pain in those around me. Fortunately, they are very patient and understanding. I do hope that at some point in my life that I will get it!

Those of us who have had their entire self beaten into some sort of distorted image will perhaps understand why I behave the way I do on my birthday. We don't have a concept of how we are truly valuable in someone's sight.

And yet, on this day, November 21, we celebrate one of the greatest gifts to humanity: Our Lady. Her parents knew and valued her as a gift. And as such, presented her back to the Lord! This understanding of their child, and especially their love for their child, were instrumental in her decision later on in life to give herself completely to the Lord and His service. She was secure in the love of the Lord, and of her parents.

In a sense, we all belong to Our Lady. She is the ultimate Mother, to whom we can turn when we need someone who does indeed love us and cares for us. She is the one who will affirm and strengthen us by always pointing to her Son and letting us know that His Way is our way and that we should do as He asks (John 2:6).


We went to a clinic to see our little Pitou for the first time. We are about 20 weeks into the pregnancy now, and were looking forward to this first "meeting". Kinda neat birthday present too eh? :D

When we were called in, I and Anne-Marie were not allowed to come with Lucille. We were not given any reasons. The explanation sheet was later given to Lucille while she was in the change room.

I must admit that I was so deeply shocked and disappointed that I was speechless! How could this place not allow a husband to be with his wife during this procedure? How can they not allow a father his first glimpse of his child? The impact of being barred was so intense, that when it was mentioned to me that I could sit in the corner where the play area was with Anne-Marie I said flat out that I would not and that I would come back when Lucille was done. I had to get out of there!

When I came back about 45 minutes later they were still not done. Just before entering the clinic as I was taking Anne-Marie out of the car seat, I asked her to pray for me to be at peace and have tact when I entered the door of the clinic. I ended up sitting in the play area, it was tiny, and playing with Anne-Marie for about 20 minutes. When we did get the call, we went into the room where Lucille was. The technician played around with the wand to bring up some live images and then showed us the 2D stills and a 3D still that she managed to get earlier.

Anne-Marie immediately realized what she was seeing. That was pretty cool. I was impressed with Pitou's features and movement. Pitou even sucked the thumb! Neat!

When we were finished, I let the clinic know that I was thoroughly disappointed in what happened. They gave me a number of what turned out to be lame excuses for their reasons. The last clinic where we saw Anne-Marie for the first and subsequent times, used procedures and training for the technicians so that no other patient data was anywhere near us while I was there, and I was there for the entire procedure, start to finish - today's clinic used patient privacy as the primary "reason" for my not being allowed in for the entire procedure.

Lucille and I discussed our experiences with this clinic. We now realize that we will look for a clinic, or even go back to the last one, that is a little more family oriented and takes the time to treat us like people. Today's clinic was sterile, cold, and we were essentially a commodity that the business used to generate revenue. That is a very disappointing way to be treated.


For my birthday Lucille took me out to Mass, then we went to my favourite Vietnamese Pho restaurant, and then we spent some time shooting pool (we went smoke free July 1 this year). All in all, it was a great day. A blessing to spend time in the presence of my wife who loves me, and treats me as the gift that I truly am for her and others. And that folks, is what I need to learn to get!

Our Lady presented in the Temple, pray for us!
Our Lady, Queen of Heaven and Earth, pray for us!
Our Lady, Mother of us all, pray for us!
Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us!

O Mary, you desire so much to see Jesus loved. Since you love me, this is the favour which I ask of you: to obtain for me a great personal love of Jesus Christ. You obtain from your Son whatever you please; pray then for me, that I may never lose the grace of God, that I may increase in holiness and perfection from day to day, and that I may faithfully and nobly fulfil the great calling in life which your Divine Son has given me. By that grief which you suffered on Calvary when you beheld Jesus die on the Cross, obtain for me a happy death, that by loving Jesus and you, my mother, on earth, I may share your joy in loving and blessing the Father, the Son and Holy Spirit forever in Heaven.

Our Lady of Combermere, pray for us.

Thank You Jesus for the gift of this life! Thank You Jesus for the gift of life, and the gift of Your creation to enjoy it in! Thank You Jesus for the gift of my family, and their great love for me! Thank You Jesus for Your continued healing of our hearts and souls!

Jesus, I love You, save souls!

Pax vobis,


The original of the prayer to Our Lady as well as the image, belongs to the Madonna House Lay Community in Combermere Ontario, Canada.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Motherhood vs. a Career

Sometimes people have a hard time understanding why I would not finish my last year of my nursing degree. For example, I know someone who keeps bringing up my past nursing education almost every time we meet. I keep coming up with different comments and answers but obviously something is not sinking in because this person keeps bringing it up. I have been told I was crazy for not finishing my nursing career, not by this person in particular but they may as well have.
It can be tough for me at times to come up with the right words to respond to these people who question my decision. Most times, when I mention to someone that I only finished 3 of the 4 years of my nursing, I usually just say for a reason, that we wanted to start a family. Usually no response follows. I am pretty sure that I have made this same statement to this person in the past but they don't seem to understand. In a way I don't expect them to until they a child(ren).
I believe it is the people of little faith who have the most difficulties with the decision that I made, with the support of my husband, over two years ago. Without my faith I am not sure I would have been able to let go of the things I needed to in order for me to say, "Yes Lord, I will do your will".
You see, I needed a certain strength from the Lord to help me remove and let go of what my mind was saying versus what my heart was saying. That took discernment and prayer, and lots of it. This is one reason why I admire Our Lady so much. The bible doesn't say a lot of details about what happened in her mind per se about whether she should say yes or no to God when the request for her to bear the Son of God came. The immediate answer was, "Yes! Not my will Lord but Yours be done!" Being who she is and the nature that she has without original sin, I doubt that she had to go through the mind versus heart game. She just knew in her heart what she needed to do right away. No time was spent wondering what the neighbours or Joseph will think, being pregnant and unmarried. Or how will Joseph and I provide for this child, or will we be able to sustain a living with only Joseph working? These are some of the kind's questions that we ask ourselves today when it comes to starting to have children or even continue having children.
In a secular way, one of the best ways I can explain my decision to start having a child before finishing my year of nursing was like having a chocolate right next to me and the thought of having to wait another year or more to eat it. Talk about torture especially if you are a chocolate lover like me!
John and I have never had a lot of money. We just knew we had enough money to live with and to make the necessary sacrifices when things were tighter money wise. We knew starting a family would affect our current standard of living. We also knew that if I needed to work when my maternity leave ran out I could go find work fairly easily if we really needed. I prayed and prayed and let people around me know to pray because I really wanted to be a stay at home mom. So far we have always had the money we needed and then some at times to get by. Yes, it was stressful and difficult, especially for my self-employed husband at times, but it is always worth it because we can live with the fact that we are taking care of our child, and not the day care or family members.
The decision to wait also came from the concern of what if we can't conceive? I thought if we start trying now that means less waiting if we decided to adopt. Infertility is quite a common thing and if I or John were infertile I would really regret not finding out sooner because I wanted to finish nursing. Nowadays, do people ever ask why it is so easy to put off having children versus having a career? Then I can ask how many women deeply regret waiting to have a child versus having a career after the fact of having a child. I would be very interested to know if there are any stats on the latter.
I know how difficult it is to make the decision to let go of a career option. We all have different priorities depending on where we are in our lives. When I first started nursing I didn't know I would meet the man I was going to marry and spend the rest of my life with more than midway through my degree. In fact, if I would have met him a year earlier than I did, I would have likely decided to opt out of the nursing degree program and complete my nursing diploma instead and then begin working as a registered nurse.
I will never know for sure why things happened the way they did, but I do know that God's ways are not my ways and we have a beautiful darling little girl to show for it and a little one in the womb waiting anxiously to be born now because of the decision John and I made together. Who could ask for more? Love and joy in its purest form is among us twofold! If I die tomorrow at least I can say I had the opportunity to fulfill my lifelong dream of becoming a wife and mother and I took it when I had the chance! I didn't wait! For me, that is part of living life to the full.

Lucille E.

Christians, the Natural Idealist and Change

There is a comparable difference in the perceptions of the Christian and the natural idealist (one with no faith) towards the need for change. (p. 5ff Transformation in Christ, Dietrich von Hildebrand).

When one discovers that one has a certain defect, lets say a manner of reacting to a certain situation that is totally out of proportion with that situation, one needs to address that defect. According to von Hildebrand, one who has no faith will be limited in their ability to deal with the defect. They, "merely wants to perfect himself within the framework of his natural dispositions." (p. 6) Their addressing of the defect "remains exclusively human". (p. 6)

The natural idealist will, to some degree, manage to work out some of the roots to the behaviour. They may indeed have the courage and honesty to face the elemental roots of the defect from their past, and the decisions that they made within those elements and as a result of those elements, however the healing of the whole person will still be lacking. Their focus will be on the defect itself, and its removal from their person.

The Christian on the other hand, can come to realize that the only way that this defect can be rooted out is to turn the entire self over to Jesus Christ. The Christian is, "to let his nature as a whole be transformed from above..." (p. 6) The process of healing and change for the Christian encompasses the whole human person, that is their spiritual, mental/emotional, and physical self. There is a realization that the defect, and all of its roots will only be removed in proportion that their person is filled with the Light of Christ. Healing and change are rooted in Jesus Christ.

We can see that there is a limited view of healing and change in the natural idealist's life. Their view is founded within the Natural Order. The Christian on the other hand, understands that they must let go of the Natural Order and essentially fall off the edge of that order into the arms of Christ. (p. 7) Falling off that edge is the only way that one can truly come to the deepest root of a defect.

There is in my life, an excellent example of what it is like to be dealing with a defect from both the natural idealist and the Christian perspective.

Before my conversion, I, along with my mother and sister, saw some of the best family psychologists and psychiatrists to deal with the insanity that was a regular part of our lifestyle. There was never a mention by the three of us of the actual violence that was a part of that insanity. That subject was taboo. After many sessions spanning many hours with these professionals they essentially wrote us off. They no longer wanted to see us because none of us was willing to budge on our own perspective of who was responsible for what in the insanity. No one, especially my mother, wanted to take responsibility.

I was assigned a professional psychologist in my early teen years due to the perception that I was extremely withdrawn. Over the years, I spent many an hour with this lady talking about what was happening on the surface within me and at home. These sessions spanned over 4 years of my life during the school year. They did indeed help me to begin to get a grasp on who I was, and what I was doing. They did indeed help me to get out of my shell to some degree. They helped me keep myself away from the abyss of despair, barely.

However, in the Natural Idealist's world, there was no real way to address the deep spiritual roots that the insanity in my family flowed from. There was also no real way to deal with the generational aspect of the insanity as I watched my grandmother do to my mother what she did to my sister and me. There was no real way to present to me the purpose for change and healing. At that time, I was an atheist, as there could not be any possibility of a God allowing what was happening within my family to happen.

My sense of humanity's vices was acute, I saw in everyone around me defects in some form or other. Because of this, I could not see that purpose for healing and change as those who presented it were themselves having to deal with their own defects. I was particularly sensitive to those who lived in denial about their own defects. It was almost pure hypocrisy to me for them to ask me to heal and change!

Along comes Jesus Christ and His Holy Spirit Who spoke to me through a struggling alcoholic. I could relate to how he presented God and God's Love because he did not hide his struggles from me, he did not deny them, nor did he live in denial about them. His honesty was refreshing.

After my conversion, I realized that the only way to deal with the defects in my person, the cycles of brokenness, and all of the elements of my past was to completely and totally abandon myself to Jesus. In my experience, Jesus was the only One whose claim to follow through on His promises, to not be a hypocrite, but to walk what he talked were valid.

Those of us who have had the blessings, yes my past has become a blessing despite how terribly painful it was, to abandon ourselves to Christ have an intimate knowledge of His Passion. We have a deep insight into the redemptive side of suffering and the fact that by abandoning ourselves to Christ we bring a great wealth of Passionate experience to bear on the Body of Christ. Our scars are His, and together we can bring great healing, courage, strength, and hope to those who are currently living in darkness and despair.

So, with von Hildebrand I say,

Only he who may say with St. Paul, 'I know in whom I have believed' can risk the enormous adventure of dying unto himself and of relinquishing the natural foundation." (p. 7)
Pax vobis,


Word from Adoration

Yesterday's time with the Lord was arid.

It was a struggle to remain focused. It was also a struggle to remain awake.
"Come to me, all you who labour and are overburdened, and I will give you rest. Shoulder my yoke and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Yes, my yoke is easy and my burden light." Matthew 11:28-30
That is what I heard.

This last week has been so busy that I am exhausted. This upcoming week looks to be much the same.

During the adoration time, I yearned to place my head on the Lord's chest and rest there. That is, I believe, where my head ended up as eventually I was given a deep rest in Him.

There are two challenges that have come to my heart:

  1. When our prayer time becomes arid, empty, devoid of all consolation and inspiration, do we drop it? Do we yearn for that consolation? Or, do we stick it out and keep going to the Adoration Chapel, or praying the Rosary, or spending that time in quiet meditation and/or contemplation? During the deepest times of aridity, do we identify with Christ in the desert? (Matthew 4:1-11) Or, do we identify with His ultimate aridity upon the Cross, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" (Matthew 27:46)
  2. Do we trust the Lord to give us that deep rest? Do we trust that all He could want in that moment is for us to just be? And, do we realize that He indeed wants to hold us safe and secure against His chest so that we can indeed find that deep rest we so yearn for?

Lord Jesus, help us come to You and rest in You. Help us to let go of our busy lives to spend time with You in the Most Blessed Sacrament. Help us to be disciplined in our approach to prayer, give us the fortitude to keep our prayer time commitments even when they seemingly bear no fruit. Thank You Jesus!

Pax vobis,


Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Breaking the Addiction

I spoke with someone that I have known for a number of years now. He just surfaced after disappearing for a few weeks or even a month. He had let himself go, and had a couple of extremely scary experiences. They scared him into drying up.

In talking to him, I realized that, for me, there was only one method to be freed from addiction. It has two parts, one part Holy Spirit, and one part iron will. I must make the decision to cooperate with the grace provided by the Holy Spirit to realize my helplessness.

This decision is ongoing, it must be made over and over, sometimes thousands of times a day. I must cooperate with grace. I must allow the Holy Spirit to deliver me from my addictions, and the demons that work on them.

The decision must incorporate a change of environment. That means letting go of those individuals and places that provide triggers for me to fall back into my addiction.

It must also incorporate a brutal honesty with myself, with those who care about me, and especially with those I have entrusted to assist me professionally with letting go.

It is truly tough to turn away from the addiction, because, it also means that I will need to face the root of it. And that, is one of the toughest parts!

Jesus, free us. Help us to embrace You, and let go of those things that interfere with our relationship. Deliver me from the demons associated with my addictions. Fill me with your Most Precious Blood, heal me, make me whole in You.

Thank You Jesus, I love you!

Pax vobis,


Monday, November 14, 2005

Word from Adoration

"Why do you run, why do you hide, oh don't you know I just just want to be with you, to be with you." Kutless, Run
I woke up early Saturday morning. About an hour and a half before I needed to leave for my scheduled time to adore the Lord.

I tried to fall back to sleep with no success. The Lord placed upon my heart the need to get up and head down to the Adoration Chapel. I struggled against that need for a bit wanting to sleep as I was pretty tired.

The burden became stronger. Like the disciples in the Garden, I wanted to sleep (Matthew 26:40).

When I finally relented, I ended up arriving about 45 minutes early. I sat with Him, and relaxed to pray.

Again, He wanted my company. He wanted me to sit with Him and to spend time with Him.

And yet, it was a tough time as I was filled with a lot of interior noise and distractions. The only thing I could do was offer the struggles with them to Him.

Two things that come to my heart are the following:
  1. When the Lord places a burden on our heart to do something, pray for something or someone, get up and pray (even in the middle of the night), call us to receive Him in the Eucharist, or spend time with Him in the Most Blessed Sacrament do we respond with a, "Yes Lord!", or perhaps like me (and St. Augustine at one point), "not now Lord, later", or, "forget it Lord"?
  2. Do we realize that He values everything, and I mean everything, that we do and say for Him and in His Name?

When we spend a lot of time listening to Him we tend to become a lot more sensitized to the gentle calls that He places upon our heart and spirit. If we keep ourselves busy and do not take the time to spend with Him we may miss those calls. Because of that, we miss the opportunity to cooperate with His grace and bring that grace to bear upon the needs of His Most Sacred Heart.

We tend to look towards doing "great" things for the Lord. And yet, it is the very "little" things that tend to mean the most and carry the most value with Him. This is especially true in light of His telling us that we must become as a child! (Matthew 18:3, 19:14; Mark 10:15; Luke 18:17)

And finally, the words from the song Run. Do we realize that He really does want to be with us? Do we realize that He indeed values us more than anything? He died and rose for us (John 3:16)! If we experienced His yearning for us to be near with Him for but a moment, we would probably die!

Pax vobis,


Friday, November 11, 2005

Prayer - Mend our Heart

Sew and mend my heart oh Lord
Sew and mend my heart.
Mold me into your instrument
To help others help You sew and mend their hearts.
Help us to be strong in our hearts.
May Your voice speak clearly through our wounded hearts
May our soul hear clearly the sound of Your heavenly voice.
Prepare us to be ready with a willing and open spirit to listen and obey You Lord.

Lucille E.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Catholics in Business

My overall sense of the Church's teaching on us being involved in the business world is to foster community. For those of us who own our own business, this essentially means to build a family with the employees, and for those who work for an employer it is to build their relationships with the other employees and their employer.

So, to use an analogy, the employer and the employees are indeed like a family. When this family has strong interpersonal relationships, founded on mutual trust and support, the community around them benefits.

The care and attention that would be given to their extended family, that is their clients, would in turn be founded in that mutual trust and support. The clients would know that they are dealing with a healthy organization. They would also know that they were getting the best the company had to offer. There is no mistaking someone who is joyful in what they are doing and at peace with why.

The fruit of this inner company attitude is an ability to foster long term relationships with their clients. Consideration for their client's needs would stem from a genuine interest in the client's well being. And, like any family, the company would do their best to protect their extended family, their client's interests.

Another fruit of this inner company attitude, is the sharing their success with those beyond their clients. It is reaching out to those less fortunate and bringing the Light of Christ to them. It is being generous with the company's time and resources.

St. Joseph represents someone who, in business, would have lived that ideal. In business as a carpenter, he was an upright man. He would have always given his clients a little more than they paid for. His attention to detail would have been second to none. He would have given good value in what he produced with his hands, tools, and heart. It was imperative that he do so, for his personal dignity, integrity, and the well being of his own family depended on it.

St. Joseph, pray for us. Pray for those of us who run a business. Pray for those of us who are employed. Help us to be the best we can be for those we serve. Help us to give glory to God in the work we do. Teach us to use all of the instruments of our work as holy objects. Thank you St. Joseph for interceding on our behalf!

Pax vobis,


Saturday, November 05, 2005

Word from Adoration

Yesterday I had a client come in last second to have a problem resolved. Working on his laptop problem put me five hours behind schedule for a server prep that I needed to do. I ended up working until past midnight last night to get the necessary work done. This morning at 9:00 is the time I am to deliver and install the server and configure a new network for our client.

So, when I came home last night, I made a deal with the Lord. You wake me up, and I will come and see you in the Most Blessed Sacrament. Meanwhile, I had turned off my alarms! Guess what? The alarm went off anyway! When I realized what was going on, I thought I would go back to sleep, but, He placed an intense yearning to come and see Him on my heart. So, off I went.

While sitting with Him, the word that came was, "I am the intersection of Heaven and Earth".

When we visit Him in the Most Blessed Sacrament, we are sitting in front of the "door to heaven" (paraphrase of John 10:9). It is possible, by grace, for us to step through that door in this life. It is also possible for us to open ourselves to the Love of the Father that flows back to us through that door.

Two saints that come immediately to mind who experienced walking through that door in this life and being fully open to the Love of the Father, are St. John of the Cross and St. Teresa of Avila. Their experiences of the divine and of intimacy with the divine permeate their writings.

We are truly blessed to have such a simple and straight-forward way for us to experience heaven through Jesus Christ present in the Most Blessed Sacrament.

The more time we spend with Him in the Most Blessed Sacrament, the more sensitive we become to His presence or lack thereof around us. By taking a disciplined approach, that is making a point to regularly visit Him (especially for those of us lay folk who have somewhat crazy schedules) we can discover anew the amazing gift we receive in Communion during the celebration of the Mass. "It is the Lord!" we exclaim with St. Thomas! (John 20:28)

When we spend time with Him in Adoration, we can discover so much about the spiritual and physical intimacy of receiving Him in the Eucharist. After all, it is indeed His Body and Blood that we receive, it is Him! (John 6:35-59, especially v. 54-56)

We can discover that the Lord is filling that space within us, the void if you will, that can only be filled by Him. This will bring a deep and lasting peace, and most especially a joy knowing that I am truly His Temple!

Lord Jesus, bless us with a yearning to spend time with You in the Most Blessed Sacrament. Teach us how to give you all of our worries, cares, and distractions while we spend time with you. Help us to come to silence within so that we can learn to listen for the whisper of Your voice. Teach us how to endure during the most arid moments, and to remain anchored in You when we receive consolation. Teach us to carry Your Presence within us to our brothers and sisters in desperate need of You.

Thank You Jesus for the awesome gift of Your presence in the Most Blessed Sacrament. Thank You for placing a yearning in us to deepen our relationship with You. Thank You Jesus for Your Love!!!

Pax vobis,


Friday, November 04, 2005

Jesus, I love You!

"Be not afraid to tell Jesus that you love Him; even though it be without feeling, this is the way to oblige Him to help you, and carry you like a little child too feeble to walk." St. Therese of Lisieux Thoughts of St. Therese pg. 114

Sometimes it is tough. We are fickle creatures at the best of times. It is easier to express our love and appreciation for the Lord when things are going well, or at least there are no negative or bad situations around us or within us.

When things are indeed rough, or very painful, it can be difficult to think of offering our love to the Lord then. How can we offer love in the midst of such suffering?

It is amazing that St. Therese makes this statement as she was living with the constant pain of illness. Especially towards the end of her life.

Jesus, I love You! Jesus, I love you! Jesus I love You!

Pax vobis,


Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Bad Fruit, Abuse and Predators, and the Grace to be Free.

Beware of false prophets who come to you disguised as sheep but underneath are ravenous wolves. You will be able to tell them by their fruits. Can people pick grapes from thorns, or figs from thistles? In the same way, a sound tree produces good fruit but a rotten tree bad fruit. A sound tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor a rotten tree bear good fruit. Any tree that does not produce good fruit is cut down and thrown on the fire. I repeat, you will be able to tell them by their fruits. Matthew 7:15-20

Bad fruit eh? When one has broken the cycles of abuse through grace, one can sense a predator in the vicinity. No longer walking the victim's walk, one can turn away and reject the invitation of that predator. One who has embraced the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ will do just that, for the One who bears the Most Sacred Heart would never do those things to the one. And He is very protective of His little brothers and sisters.

One who has been abused gains a very keen eye and a sensitive spirit. These two tools facilitate one's survival before, during, and after the abusive events. They enable one to gain some form of control by triggering an abusive event to get it over with, or to know the signs that things are almost done, and then finally to find a safe place to be. They enable one to sense the "darkness" within another who also abuses.

Those same tools facilitate a deep and sometimes wordless connection with those around who live as victims.

Jesus repeats himself in His warning about knowing someone by their fruits. He is adamant that we take the time to get to know someone before placing our trust in them.

This is especially true before making a life-long commitment in the Sacraments of Marriage and Holy Orders. It is also true for those who are Postulants or Novices.

Once one has made the decision to break free, to run to freedom, one still needs to deal with the internal cycles. For, the external cycles at the hands of the other or others take very deep root within. The longer the external cycles are lived, the deeper they are rooted. Even in the absence of the one(s) who abused, one will live those internal cycles within for many years. And, it may even take decades or a lifetime before one is completely free and healed.

One needs Jesus Christ, one needs to receive Him regularly - daily if possible - in the Eucharist, one needs to bring the wounds to the Sacrament of the Sick and a priest, one needs to bring one's inner cycles to the Sacrament of Reconciliation and be totally open to the healing of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus, and one needs to learn to foster healthy relationships with others. This last one is just as important, for it is easy for one to remain fearful and distrust anyone and everyone around.

The Most Sacred Heart of Jesus beats with love, understanding, and compassion for His little ones who unknowingly share in His Passion. He will bring others into the life of the one who suffered. People who will genuinely listen and be a friend, who will accept the one who manifests the brutality of their life with ugly behaviours and mannerisms, and who will, by their presence, teach the one that they are valued and loved.

And one other thing: Those two tools also give one the ability to see beyond the hurts, wounds, and pains in others. They give one the ability to see His Light within. And it is His Light that illuminates the other's beauty and goodness. Only predators, the wolf in sheep's clothing, are the exception to the rule and one knows them by their fruits.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us.

Pax vobis,