Tuesday, May 29, 2007

This is going to be a slow blogging week for me. There are just so many end-of-the year events that I must participate in or attend. Above is the Spring music concert for my two youngest. (Mary playing the flute....) And above that-- opening day bike parade at our neighborhood pool.
Tonight is the baccalaureate Mass for my graduating high schooler and Thursday is the graduation. Thursday morning is the senior breakfast which I'm bringing food for. (I still have to buy it.) Today and Thursday are the final volleyball games and Wednesday is the track banquet. Yikes, I have to get off the computer. I'm way behind on reading everybody's blogs, but the end of the schedule crunch is in sight. (I hope.) I've been tagged for two different memes and I am going to do them but it might be next week. God bless everybody who sometimes reads my blog. (I'm finished writing about Notre Dame for a while :-)

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Candles at the grotto at Notre Dame

Today I went to Notre Dame to pick up my son. As usual, we visited the grotto where I lit two candles. One I lit for my good friend Mary, her family, and their intentions. The other I lit for the anonymous critic of Notre Dame who has been posting comments on my blog, and for his/her intentions.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Notre Dame-- Batting Zero????

Anonymous has left the following comment on my last post on Notre Dame:

"I am sorry Catholic kids do not make a school Catholic, what makes a school Catholic is the people that teach their (being in good standing with the Vatican) and the people that attend the school actually believe what the Church teaches...so far ND is batting 0-2.Hence it is catholic with a small c and not a BIG C as say Franciscan Univ. is!!! "

OK, anon, what is this all about? I will grant you that Franciscan University has a greater unity of faithfulness among students and faculty than does Notre Dame. It is also much smaller than ND. Franciscan University of Steubenville is a wonderfully unusual faith-filled place. It's fantastic. Does that mean no Catholic young person should attend any other university?

Do you think that the Lord wants to abandon Notre Dame (as you seem to be doing) because of the few isolated areas that have drifted? I think Scripture tells us that the Lord tends to do just the opposite.

Are you trying to say that there are no faithful faculty members or faithful students at Notre Dame? That's ridiculous. Where is your data to back up your claim? My son took an entire course on John Paul the Great's Theology of the Body. He also took an entire course on the Reformation from, naturally, a very Catholic point of view. There's a Eucharistic Chapel in every dorm, large enough for daily Masses. Public rosaries are said every night at the grotto.

Do you know anything at all about the President of Notre Dame, Father Jenkins, who is widely regarded as a good and faithful priest?

Did you know that this year's valedictorian is entering the seminary? I urge you to read his valedictory address. Here is one quote. "I likewise was taken aback when I noticed in my dorm that the most popular weekend spot was the chapel for Sunday night Mass. The University’s faith foundation was instrumental in my decision to come here, though only after arriving as a student did I start to realize the distinctiveness of this place and the role faith plays in that distinctiveness."

Like many faithful Catholics have done, Anon, you seem to be looking at a few isolated examples of problems at Notre Dame and then generalized that impression to the whole university. Such judging is prejudice. You have prejudged the entire university with inadequate information. To do so is an unjust accusation made against a very large community of people, most of whom are decent people trying to be good Catholics.

I think you ought to leave Our Lady's University alone, or better yet, pray that it will be purified of all that displeases her, that Father Jenkins will be given wisdom and courage to continue the housecleaning he has already begun. (I'm always sympathetic to those who need to do a little housecleaning....)

The body of Christ is very large and the battle for the hearts, minds, and souls of our children is fierce. Petty finger-pointing only serves to weaken us a a church.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

The Grotto at Notre Dame

Here is the grotto at Notre Dame with my sister and one of my sons praying.
When I go to Notre Dame I always try to say a rosary at the grotto.
Once it was nighttime, freezing cold, and sleeting. I told my son I wanted to say the rosary at the grotto after dinner but that he didn't need to come with me. He said he would anyway. We ate in the dining hall with a group of his friends. After dinner he told them of our plans. He asked, "Anybody want to go?" They ALL wanted to go. They piled in my van and we drove over there.
I was so distracted saying the rosary by these amazing college students who wanted to join us in the freezing rain. When we finished the last prayer I turned to them, about to tell them how impressed I was with their devotion. To my astonishment, they all were still standing there, eyes closed, deep in prayer for another five minutes or so. I was nearly in tears thinking who are these kids? I certainly was not like this in college and didn't know anyone else like this either. The grace of God was just upon them. Perhaps I will be criticized again by an anonymous commenter but I must say that I think many of the students at Notre Dame, and certainly these students in particular, are influenced by the presence of Our Lady on that campus.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

8 Things About Me Meme

Deb from UKOK's Place has tagged me for the "8 Things About Me Meme."

Here are the rules:

“Here are the rules: Each player lists 8 facts/habits about themselves. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning before those facts/habits are listed. At the end of the post, the player then tags 8 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know that they have been tagged and asking them to read your blog.”

1. I bite my nails (as in fingernails). I tend to be an anxious person and have suffered from anxiety disorders in the past. I received excellent treatment from the University of Michigan Anxiety Disorders Clinic and I highly recommend them. Since their treatment it has ceased to be an issue in my life. (Although I still bite my nails.)

2. I lived in Japan for a year with a Japanese family. It was a wonderfully enriching experience.

3. I'm only five feet tall.

4. I am a terrible housekeeper and I am not good at getting rid of things. (I realize the two are connected....I'm working on it.)

5. I was born in Orange, New Jersey, lived in Fort Wayne, IN for 8 years growing up, and then moved to Michigan. As a child I was terrified of tornadoes, having had several close calls.

6. I am not good at any sport. I never played anything well growing up, always preferring to read.

7. I belong to a Catholic charismatic parish and have been involved with the charismatic renewal since 1987, I believe.

8. I was once in my youthful foolishness a very liberal democrat!!

OK. I tag:

Esther at A Catholic Mom in Hawaii.

James at A Catholic Teen's Thoughts.

Kate at Heart Speaks to Heart

Michelle at Rosetta Stone

The Kitchen Madonna

Angie at Many Little Blessings

Florida Wife at Waiting for the Gift of Children

And Amy Caroline at Knit Together in Love

Monday, May 21, 2007

Notre Dame Graduation Pictures!!

Here he is-- my first-born and me. I couldn't be prouder of him. Can you tell? LOL

This is all of us on the big day.....

Dear Friend Mary O. checks out that ring!!!!

The graduation cake at the family dinner for all the graduates!!!

The "second mother" Mary O., the godmother (my sister) and me...

All of us-- friends, cousins, parents, brothers, and sisters...the fan club.

Having just walked into the arena (super zoomed) diploma in hand.

The proud parents and the official document. He's now a "domer."

Brunch in the dining hall before commencement.

Tomorrow I'll write more......

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Graduation from Notre Dame!!

My oldest son is graduating from Notre Dame this weekend and we are about to leave. I probably won't be posting again until next week since I don't have a laptop.

I am still kind of in shock that I have a son who is a college graduate. That he is graduating from his dream school is all the more incredible.

As many of you know I LOVE Notre Dame. No one else in my family has graduated from there. Before my son was accepted I had never been there. My opinion of this school is all from direct personal experience. There is a grace on Notre Dame. EVERYONE is kind and helpful and gracious and humble. I've never seen a university like it. I consider it a great blessing that my son has been able to earn his degree there. Thanks be to God!!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Mother's Day Surprise

How did they guess what I wanted for Mother's Day??? LOL An apron from Kitchen Madonna!!

Lizzie showing me the little holy cards and medal that Kitchen Madonna put in the pocket. How sweet is that?! I love it!! It's just beautiful. I wore it on Mother's Day, and on National Apron Wearing Day, and all day today too! In fact, I'm wearing it at this very moment. It puts me in a good mood. It makes me feel happy and nurturing. It gives me energy and keeps a smile on my face.
Who knew a lovely apron could do all that? She should advertise them as anti-depressants. LOL Thank you so much, KM. And you even made it for a short person!!! My husband said it arrived in two days. You're the greatest!!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Happy Mother's Day, Mom

My mom has been gone for three years now, having suffered from Alzheimer's for over ten years before her passing.

My one consolation is that now, at least, she knows me and her grandchildren again.

Once when my mom was well advanced in her disease and in a nursing home she told me, "I just want to go home and be a mom." I knew exactly what she meant. She wanted to be back "with the apron on." I know all you moms know just what I mean.

My mother was a good mother who would do anything for her family. She was always there for us. And she adored her grandchildren. She couldn't say enough good things about them. They were all beautiful, and "extremely intelligent," etc. I always had to laugh. They could do no wrong in her eyes. I'd try to get them to pick things up before we left her house. She would let them make forts out of the cushions on her couch and chairs. She's say, "Oh just leave it. It will give me the pleasure of knowing they were here."

Mom, we all miss you a whole lot. Please pray for us. (like a minute could pass in heaven without her thinking to do that. ) Thanks for being my mom.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Ten Things About Me Meme

I have been tagged by Aldara from Catholic Mommyhood to do this ten things about me meme.

1. I lived in Japan for a year.

2. I lived with chronic hepatitis C, contracted from a blood transfusion, for 20 years before being successfully treated with interferon and ribavirin. The virus is now undetectable. Yea!

3. My great grandfather immigrated to this country from France to be the personal chef of one of the Vanderbilts.

4. My mother's heritage is 100%Irish.

5. I like to garden.

6. I like to write.

7. I like to debate matters of truth and morality.

8. I am now the proud mother of one college graduate.

9. I do not feel old enough (or mature enough) to be in my fifties.

10. I do not enjoy exercise (except for gardening and walking-- nothing too strenuous:-)

I tag James and anyone else who is looking for something to write about.

Ten Things About Me Meme

I have been tagged by Aldara from Catholic Mommyhood to do this ten things about me meme.

1. I lived in Japan for a year.

2. I lived with chronic hepatitis C, contracted from a blood transfusion, for 20 years before being successfully treated with interferon and ribavirin. The virus is now undetectable. Yea!

3. My great grandfather immigrated to this country from France to be the personal chef of one of the Vanderbilts.

4. My mother's heritage is 100%Irish.

5. I like to garden.

6. I like to write.

7. I like to debate matters of truth and morality.

8. I am now the proud mother of one college graduate.

9. I do not feel old enough (or mature enough) to be in my fifties.

10. I do not enjoy exercise (except for gardening and walking-- nothing too strenuous:-)

I tag James and anyone else who is looking for something to write about.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

A Calling to the Priesthood?

Please pray for a man who is discerning a calling to the priesthood. I know this man and I think he would be a wonderful, and I mean WONDERFUL priest. But, it's not up to me.
Please pray that God would lead him very clearly and that the way would be smoothly paved for him if indeed God is calling him.
And please pray that Satan would be hopelessly unsuccessful in any attempt to confuse this man or to present obstacles to his walking the path the Lord desires for him, whatever that might be.
Oh Lord, you know who I'm talking about. If it be your will please give him a certain sign, that he might have every reason to feel completely confident that this desire within him is, in fact, a calling from you.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

School May Crowning

Here is the May Crowning we had at school. The second graders wore their First Communion outfits. It was a lovely day. Aren't they adorable. They looked like a classroom full of angels.

Of course , they ARE a classroom full of angels. It is just a wonderfully sweet, charming group of seven-year olds. I just love them.
These pictures are again courtesy of Mary O. I couldn't print these side pictures any bigger. Don't know why. But you get the idea of what the day was like. Thank you, Mary O.!
OK.... For you Protestants, we don't worship Mary. What you see is affection and respect, not adoration. We love Mary because she is the mother of our Lord, but we don't worship her. We honor her ,but we do not adore her. In fact, we are specifically forbidden to adore her. Adoration is reserved for God alone. Those who claim that Catholics worship Mary are sadly making a false claim. It is important to know the truth.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Blogs I Like

Well, once again I am building a blogroll. Kate did kindly tell me how to transfer my whole feedlist to a blogroll but I decided to do it one by one since there are sites on my feedlist that are not among my favorite blogs, but are just ones I like to check in on from time to time. You know what I mean?

So, know that I am not nearly finished. (I wasn't finished before I deleted it either....) Hope you're enjoying what is in Michigan a simply gorgeous day!

Sunday, May 06, 2007

May Crowning!!

This is the actual statue at our church as she looked on Saturday. Isn't she gorgeous? My wonderful friend Mary O. sent me this picture from our May Crowning. Mary hand carried the crown back from Hawaii where she was visiting. It is just exquisite in real life. The morning sun was shining on her though the windows and the whole experience was really rather mystical.

Our church is only a few years old but it has the feel of a traditional Catholic church. It is a charismatic parish and the members are very faithful to the magisterium We have a wonderful unity. There was talk of eventually turning these windows behind Mary into stained glass windows, but some of us really love the warm natural light they provide too. Mary looks very lovely in front of them.

For those of you who may be reading this who are not Catholic, please know that when I refer to the statue as 'she' I know I am talking about she who the statue represents. There is no worship of the statue here, nor worship of Mary either, for that matter. We honor her because she is the mother of Our Lord and because she leads us to Him. Just as at the wedding at Cana she is always telling us, "Do whatever he tells you."

Saturday, May 05, 2007

May Crowning

I have not posted in several days because of preparations for our parish May Crowning.

It was lovely. Nothing quite went as planned and yet it was still lovely. There several hundred people there. Dearest Jeanne brought 12 dozen roses for the procession!!It was just beautiful.

The crown was the loveliest May Crowning crown I have ever seen. It was made from flowers brought back by sweet Mary from Hawaii!!! Just gorgeous.

My son John played the keyboard and our wonderful music minister did a terrific job leading, in spite of some confusion.

We sang Immaculate Mary in procession. We crowned her to the traditional May Crowning hymn, Bring Flowers of the Rarest. And concluded with Hail Holy Queen Enthroned Above.

The Mass immediately before the Crowning had a strong Marian focus-- the readings and the homily were all about Mary. Our pastor and two deacons led the crowning. This was the first parish sponsored May Crowning we've ever had. The presence of the clergy and the instruction they gave made it clear that it is their desire to put our parish under Mary's mantle. It was very inspiring, very moving.

I hope to post pictures when I receive some.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Yikes! You won't believe this!

I just accidentally erased my entire blogroll-- the one I've been working on for days and days, adding everybody's addresses one by one....I don't know how or if it's possible to retrieve it. Is there a way to just make my bloglines feeds my blogroll? All in one step? I can't believe I did this.

Our Parish Mission: Living in the Power of the Risen Christ

Our parish is having a parish mission this week. The speakers are from Renewal Ministries: Ralph Martin, Peter Herbeck, and Sister Ann Shields. I will be writing more about their message soon. For now, just have to get some things done so I can go to it!

May we all live in the power of the Risen Christ every day! Even while cleaning toilets and doing laundry!!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Saint Pius X

"Holy Communion is the shortest and safest way to heaven. There are others: innocence, but that is for little children; penance, but we are afraid of it; generous endurance of trials of life, but when they come we weep and ask to be spared. The surest, easiest, shortest way is the Eucharist."

Saint Pius X

We so underestimate the power of the Eucharist!!!!