Saturday, October 27, 2007

All Saints and All Souls

We have some awesome feast days coming up this next week, Nov. 1st is the Solemnity of All Saints Day and Nov. 2nd is All Souls Day. Try to attend Mass one of these days and I think you will be moved by the depth of these special feast days.

Simply put, All Saints Day is a time to thank God for all the Saints who have gone to heaven before us and to ask them to pray for us.

All Souls Day is a time for us to remember those have gone on to eternal life before us and to pray for them.

Find out more from EWTN at www.ewtn.com

Turn on the radio...

This was some heartening news

I was reading somewhere (maybe the National Catholic Register- I can't remember :O ) about the power of Catholic radio and it's growing presence in the U.S. market. Radio is one of the most cost effective ways to reach people, in the sense that one doesn't need to purchase expensive equipment to listen to a radio station and many people spend hours a day in the car on the way to work and naturally turn on the radio.

Pope John Paul II writing Ecclesia in America remarks, "For the new evangelization to be effective, it is essential to have a deep understanding of the culture of our time in which the social communications media are most influential. Therefore, knowledge and use of the media, whether the more traditional forms or those which technology has produced in recent times, is indispensable. Contemporary reality demands a capacity to learn the language, nature and characteristics of mass media. Using the media correctly and competently can lead to a genuine inculturation of the Gospel. At the same time, the media also help to shape the culture and mentality of people today, which is why there must be special pastoral activity aimed at those working in the media."

Excellent words. Glad people are listening...

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Seattle Times

Here's an article that came out in yesterday's Sports section written by Zach Landres-Schnur of the Seattle Times.

Our website...

Have you visited our SOLT Sisters website? Check out www.soltsisters.org for info about our community, missions, various apostolates and links to other sites in our community.

Enjoy!

God bless you!

More Brandon Heath...

If you liked the music video of Brandon Heath's, "I'm not who I was" you might like the lyrics to another song on the same "Don't get comfortable" CD entitled, "The Light". It's a beautiful song about clinging to God when all seems dark.
Here are the lyrics:
The hand that feeds the fire
The lips that taste the smoke
All together once again
The moon that hangs so pale
The dark that makes you choke
Comes to cover you again

Stay close you people with your broken hearts
I stand before you as a witness
Hold tight to the Man who stands in front of you
As we move toward the light

The will that knows no end
The eyes that see your heart
Come to look on you once more
The word that shakes the ground
The voice that clams the sea
Stands knocking at your door

Stay close you people with your broken hearts
I stand before you as a witness
Hold tight to the Man who stands in front of you
As we move toward the light.


Here is a video of the live performance of the song but I'd have to encourage you to get the CD or download his album on iTunes because his studio version is better than this live version.



Sunday, October 21, 2007

Fr. Walter Ciszek

I can't remember if I wrote about Fr. Walter Ciszek during the summer. He was an American priest who ended up spending many years in the labor camps of Russia. The two most popular books about him are, With God in Russia and the more personal spiritual side of his time in the labor camps, He leadeth Me.

I read He Leadeth Me over the summer while I was spending time preparing for my Perpetual Vows. I like to read, I read a lot of different things but that was one of the best books I have ever read. Fabulous. Fr. Ciszek talks about the different trials he endured, how he made sense of them and what God was teaching him though it all.

I was really struck by one thing that Fr. Ciszek mentioned. So often we think that to reach people and evangelize, we have have to have a certain program, certain knowledge, say the right things, etc. And while that may be partially true, Fr. Ciszek said that the best way to help people in the world today is to become a saint yourself.

Well said. I agree. It would be much easier to say that we aren't effective because we don't have such-and-such of an educational degree. But that really misses the point. God places so many people in our lives everyday. He is always working. So perhaps I should ask myself, "Am I being faithful to the call of holiness?"

Mother Teresa was quoted as saying, "We are not called to be successful but faithful."
The book that recently came out about her called, Come be my light
is another fabulous witness of personal sanctity benefiting mankind at large.

So, help the world, become a saint!

Some nice articles

Here are some articles from this week's National Catholic Register:
Religion and Sports

The creator of the movie Bella, nice conversion story about Eduardo Verastegui

Sunday, October 14, 2007

I'm not who I was...

I was just reading John Paul II's encyclical "The Mercy of God" this morning and I was really struck by a comment he made. He said, "Conversion is the most concrete expression of the working of love and of the presence of mercy in the human world. The true and proper meaning of mercy does not consist only in looking, however penetratingly and compassionately, at moral, physical or material evil: mercy is manifested in its true and proper aspect when it restores to value, promotes and draws good from all the forms of evil existing in the world and in man.(emphasis included in the original text)"

WOW!!! That's great news. We see in this that the Sacrament of Confession is far more than just going in some little room and saying the wrong things we've done. It truly is a meeting with Christ, it's a meeting that restores us to our original dignity and allows "all things to work for good for those who believe in God." God even uses our sin to bring us to a closer relationship with Him. Just as the prodigal son was brought into a deeper relationship with his father when he realized the error of his ways and returned to his father and confessed his sin and sorrow, so are we brought into a closer relationship with our Father when we see the ways we've lived beneath our true dignity and go back to Him and confess our faults and failings. Far from belittling us, Pope John Paul II says that true mercy restores us.

And it's not only in Confession that these realities are lived out. We are restored and we offer restoration every time we offer mercy to someone else. Many times among our families and friends, deep wounds are inflicted and we go months, maybe even years, in bitterness and silence. At some point we have to ask ourselves, "Is this really in keeping with my dignity? Is this really worth all of the hatred and sorrow it inflicts?" Perhaps we need to go and say we are sorry and ask for forgiveness. Perhaps we need to tell someone that we forgive them before they even ask us. Thank goodness that forgiveness is an act of the will, and not a feeling. We do our best and ask God to help us forgive those truly who have hurt us. Only then, when we are open to forgiveness and forgiving, do we truly live in the peace of Christ.

I am posting the video below of a song by Christian singer Brandon Heath. When I first heard this song, it really touched me and in the video he explains how the song came about. This song is about conversion and the grace of God...something we all need!


Saturday, October 13, 2007

Entrance to Novitiate

The entrance to Novitiate ceremony is one of the most moving ceremonies that takes place in religious life. The women begin the Mass as Postulants and leave the church as Novices, wearing a habit and veil. The videos below show the blessing of the habits (when the women are still postulants) and then receiving the name of the Mary (after they have put on their habits and become novices).



Sisters at play..

For all you athletes out there, here's a fun little clip of some of our postulants and novices at a game of ultimate frisbee that took place over the summer!

Long lost blog...

Wow, it has been some time since the blog has been updated! Poor long lost blog. I guess that's what happens when school starts and other things are all happening at the same time. But, lost no more! Get ready for some cool updates!
First, here are some links about one of our sisters who is coaching volleyball:
The Mill Creek Enterprise

The Everett Herald