2013 Things to do before I die: Done!

I only listed two things to do for 2013.  The third one is the gravy.  Gravy could mean I will die happy for having accomplished my endeavour.  The list is:

  1.  Cook ham the way my family does it
  2.  Cook turkey the way my family does it.


Who am I kidding?  I am not a domesticated chick that stays in the kitchen.  I’d rather
plant my own garden, be a cat woman, climb the mountain and be surprised by the light.

The Ham.  Done.  I fed it to Mr. Polish and Mother Teresa next door at Room 307.

The Turkey.  Done.

Impromptu party for YaYa sisterhood last night. They loved it.  Gave them all the left over.  Just like I said, I only eat the Pope’s nose.

As a reward for the sisters gobbling the turkey,  they each received a bottle of wine that I won at United Way and then some.  And then some means, unburdened me with gifts I received that I have no need and giving clothes that that they are eyeing for a long time.  They always enjoy coming here empty-handed and going home with party favours.

As for my reward:  The Carcass.

Mission accomplished. It’s a good day to die.

Let the little children come to me

Thousands of Catholic families from around the world gathered at the Vatican over the weekend to celebrate the Year of Faith with Pope Francis.A small group of children was invited to sit on the pope’s platform to listen to speakers from across the world speak about their faith and families.

Pope Francis and boy

Pope Francis was visibly amused when one child stayed on the stage instead of returning to his seat on the steps.

Let the children come to me and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.  Luke 18:16

See more photos here.
 
Source:  NCR Staff

A Story of “Faith” Umbrella

The spring rains did not come and the summer heat was worse than it had ever been.  All the fields in the area were parched, dusty, and brown. Our livelihood, our way of life, was wilting away. Most mornings we would search the sky for any sign of relief, for a hint of rain on the horizon. Days turned into arid weeks and soon became months.  Everywhere faithful people prayed.

The ministers, priest and rabbi of our local churches announced that there would be a special service to pray for rain on the following Saturday. They asked that everyone bring an object of their faith. So come Saturday morning we all gathered in the town square. People came with anxious faces and hopeful hearts. Looking around you could see the Bibles, Book of Prayers, crosses, crucifixes, pictures of Jesus – and you could tell the Catholic because of their rosaries.

And so we prayed.  We prayed a mighty prayer of praises for God, praises for His divine protection, and  petitions for rain. We sang, prayed some more, and heard the minister proclaim our faith in Jesus. And then we prayed some more. Just as the hour of prayer was concluding, and as if by some divine cue, a soft rain began to fall. Cheers swept the crowd as they held their treasured objects high in gratitude and praise.  The Pentecostals were shouting out their Hallelujahs with arms raised in ecstasy. The Catholics even got excited and were waving their rosaries, whipping them around in a frenzy.

But one symbol of faith seemed to overshadow all the others; one person had brought an umbrella.

Faith Umbrella

Special birthday pilgrimage to receive blessings on my 50th birthday in Vatican, Rome, Italy.

Source:   Friarmusings

The Best Part

There are so many parishes around where I live.  I go where ever the wind blows me.

The one closest to me is St. Frances de Sale I go should I feel like walking.  Down the hills is St. Therese but I’ve never went because walking uphill is just a challenge for this old body.  Our Lady of Mercy I visit should I wish to see my family.

Since I prefer the easiest route, I hop on a Sky train and attend a mass at St. Mary’s Church.  Here I love listening to Fr. Pierre, a Frenchie.  Somehow French man has a sing-song way of speaking English and his sense of humour is effective when he speaks his sermon.  It is much easier to shallow his teaching when he lifts the congregation up rather than talking down to us.  That is what I call effective communication.

Should I feel the need to drop by at a church on a way home, I go to the Cathedral.  Here I meet all kinds of people including the pan handlers, the addicts, the alcoholics, the mentally ill or anyone who wants refuge from an inhospitable weather.  Most of the priest here are on the higher echelon.  Their sermons are okay. For as long as I get my dosage of Spiritual healing and thanksgiving, that is what I am after.

When I really missed being with the elders, I go to the Indian Reserve and attend a mass at St. Paul’s.

First Nations Aboriginals

First Nations Aboriginals

As I mentioned before, the whole world is my church.  So far, I haven’t met anyone who understands this mentality until recently I read an article from UCAN News.

Faith revolutionizes our lives…

I would like to tell you what my expectations are regarding this World Youth Day. I would like us to make noise, I would like those inside the Dioceses to go out into the open; I want the Church to be in the streets; I want us to defend ourselves against all that is worldliness, comfort, being closed and turned within – Parishes, colleges and institutions must get out otherwise they risk becoming NGOs, and the Church is not a Non-Governmental Organization….

These are the words of Pope Francis.  Finally, a man who understands me.

The World is my Church, this is the best part.

Related Links:

Prayer of an 11 year old Indian boy

Prayer of an 11 year old Indian boy on hearing of Sino-Indian border fighting: Lord, make this world last as long as possible. 
 prayer of a boy

 Prayer for peace on Earth

Blessed John XXIII was a man unafraid of the future. Moved by his trust in Providence, even in what seemed like a permanent situation of conflict, he did not hesitate to summon the leaders of his time to a new vision of the world.

Let us all resolve to have this same outlook: trust in the merciful and compassionate God who calls us to brotherhood, and confidence in the men and women of our time because, like those of every other time, they bear the image of God in their souls. (John Paul II).

As we long for peace we remember our brothers and sisters of all faiths – and none – who share our longings.

 
Related Articles:

A Jain Prayer

A Jain Prayer

Lead me from death to Life, from falsehood to Truth.
Lead me from despair to Hope, from fear to Trust.
Lead me from hate to Love, from war to Peace.
Let Peace fill our heart, our world, our universe.
– Satish Kumar

 

Source: Sacred Space

Source: Sacred Space

Prayer for peace on Earth

Pope John Paul II reflected on Blessed John XXIII’s Four Pillars of Peace:

» Truth will build peace if every individual sincerely acknowledges not only his rights, but also his own duties towards others.

» Justice will build peace if in practice everyone respects the rights of others and actually fulfils his duties towards them.

» Love will build peace if people feel the needs of others as their own and share what they have with others.

» Freedom will build peace and make it thrive if, in the choice of the means to that end, people act according to reason and assume responsibility for their own actions.

Related Articles:

A Muslim Prayer

O God! O our Master! You are eternal life and everlasting peace by your essence and attributes. The everlasting peace is from You and it returns to You. O our Sustainer! Grant us the life of true peace and usher us into the abode of peace. O Glorious and Bounteous One! You are blessed and sublime. 
Source:  Sacred Space

Source: Sacred Space

Prayer for peace on Earth 
Forty years ago Pope John reminded the world of the Four Pillars of Peace. They are the basis of right order in our world. It is an order that is founded on truth, built up on justice, nurtured and animated by charity, and brought into effect under the auspices of freedom. 
As we join together at Sacred Space, we might express our hope for our world, that we may re-establish the divine order in our own hearts and in our world. Still, we remember that the Lord speaks to each person according to their own situation and needs. 
Our brothers and sisters of many faiths – and none – share our longing for peace.
 
Related Articles:

Forgiveness in Action – March Monthly Peace

The monthly Peace Challenge for the month of  March 2013 is about Marching Towards Forgiveness. 
Forgiveness is just a not a word for me.  I can only forgive through action.  I can think about it, I can meditate about, I can wish about it; none of these would work for me.  I can only show it.  And here is a great story about forgiveness. 
As John Paul II took the hand of his would-be-assassin, he showed us that a Christian must forgive his enemies, even when they do not want forgiveness. 
One of the bullets that struck John Paul II remains in the crown of the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Fatima, Portugal. 
 
By Brother Randall J. Meissen, LC
4/27/2011 JohnPaulMoments.com (johnpaulmoments.com) 
ROME, Italy (John Paul Moments) – On December 27, 1983, as John Paul II sat in a bare, whitewashed jail cell of Rome’s Rebibbia prison, he was unprepared for the question voiced by an unshaven prisoner to his side, “So why aren’t you dead?”  
Why aren’t you dead? 
Death had appeared all but certain to bystanders when three bullets fired by Turkish gunman Mehmet Ali Agca tore through the pope’s flesh on May 13, 1981, staining the pope’s white cassock with deathly scarlet. 
Ali Agca was a professional assassin, he had aimed at close range, and he had aimed well.  But somehow, the bullets missed lethal targets, one grazing the pope’s right elbow, and another deflecting off his left index finger before passing through his abdomen, a fraction of an inch from a major artery.  
By John Paul II’s assessment, “It was a mother’s hand that guided the bullet’s path,” and permitted that “the dying Pope. stopped on the threshold of death.”  The assassination attempt had taken place on the feast of Our Lady of Fatima, and the pope had no doubt that his survival was due to the intervention of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  
In gratitude, the Pope gave one of the deadly bullets to the bishop in charge of the shrine at Fatima, Portugal.  To this day, that bullet remains in the crown of the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary housed at that shrine. 
However, as John Paul II sat at the side of his would-be-assassin, Ali Agca expressed fears that this Lady of Fatima might come after him next.  The pope stated the contrary; he himself had come to forgive, not to harm.  But Ali Agca did not ask for forgiveness.  
Thus, as the pope took the hand of the gunman, he showed us that a Christian must forgive his enemies, even when they do not want forgiveness.
 
Source: Catholic.Org