Friday, September 27, 2013

Are We Listening?

Agony In the Garden (detail) by Fra Angelico (Bl. John of Fiesole, OP)

I was contemplating the actions of the apostles while Jesus suffered His agony in the garden during my rosary this morning. A horrible thought came to mind: are we like the apostles, sleeping while our Jesus suffers indescribable agony as His precious children are wretchedly aborted - sacrificial victims to our own self-will? Sleeping, because our lives are so busy with worldly demands and delights - that we do not have time to console Jesus by joining with others in protest of this present-day holocaust!

For the past several years, 40 Days for Life Campaigns have been held in our city. I humbly and sadly admit, I did not participate as often as I should have! Overall, though, the turnouts to support Life were quite paltry compared to the number of pro-life people who live here! I have no doubt that we all have been and continue to pray for all mothers to choose life for their babies. But we are also called by the Lord to act - to come to the Garden with Him and stay awake. Yes, and to pray! Praying the rosary, our Blessed Mother assures us, is our best weapon!

On October 12, in numerous cities around the nation, Rosary Rallies will be held as an outcry against Abortion - but how many of us will take the time and make the effort to participate?  I always seem to have an excuse not to interrupt my own plans to attend this kind of event. Am I - are we - truly in sympathy with the wounded Heart of Our Dear Savior, or are we more concerned with our own comforts? Oh, Holy Spirit, please inspire us to Stand With Jesus at this Rosary Rally, to say to our city, to our country and to the world that Enough is Enough!! Oh, Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!!

Editor's Note: A Public Square Rosary will be held in Tallahassee on Saturday, October 12, 2013 at Noon, on the grounds of the State Capital.  For more information contact local coordinator Karen Cook at 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The Year of Faith Marian Day - October 13, 2013

Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary is an important dimension of Dominican spirituality.   Our Holy Father, Pope Francis, echos this in his words and actions.  On October 13, Pope Francis will consecrate the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary as part of the Marian Day celebration that will involve the statue of Our Lady of the Rosary of Fatima.  Further information is available at these trusted outlets:

Catholic News Agency Article

Rome Reports Article (with video clip)

Vatican Year of Faith Website (Marian Day Official Program of Events):

Fatima Official Website (English Language):


In support of Pope Francis, prayerful requests for intercession to Our Blessed Mother are strongly recommended.  Please include the Holy Father and his intentions with your personal prayer intentions, especially when praying the rosary.  An additional devotion available is the Novena to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Novena prayers are available here:
Basic novena prayer:
Longer novena complete with meditations for each day:


The Dominican Order is rooted in its devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary.  The rosary was a key tool in the apostolate of St. Dominic.  For further reading on Dominican teaching on the rosary, Fatima, and Consecration to the Immaculate Heart, navigate to the Rosary Center maintained by the Western Dominican Province (US):


In related news, America Needs Fatima is organizing the national 2013 Public Square Rosary Crusade.  As a part of the national crusade, a Public Square Rosary will be held in Tallahassee on Saturday, October 12, 2013 at Noon, on the grounds of the State Capital.  For more information contact local coordinator Karen Cook at  

Sunday, September 1, 2013

A Challenge of Humility

Today's theme at Mass was Humility - take the lowest place at the table rather than pridefully going to the head of the table, only to be humiliated when the host asks you to move to a lower one. Of course we all know that one - nothing new here. But then as Father Tom began to explain humility in more depth, it hit me! Trying to look better than I am - no,  even trying to be perfect in the estimations of others. Oh, my - there I was, caught like a deer in the headlights! I have always disliked entertaining because I felt my house was not perfect enough.  This countertop is scratched, that wallpaper needs replacing, I won't have time to do enough housecleaning before my guests come, the list goes on and on! Yet - I go to other people's homes and sometimes theirs are not perfect either. That doesn't seem to phase my obsession. But where does this big concern come from? I always justified it as being an "insecurity complex," but now I see that it was in fact - False Pride! A lack of humility!

I am a retired teacher of the Visually Handicapped, an area of Special Education. Teachers in this field are required to write an Educational Plan for each student annually, specifying the goals and objectives the student will be taught and and expected to master during the school year. I think our Heavenly Father is like that, too, thank goodness! We used to say, in the Charismatic Renewal, that God is a mansion-builder, and He isn't finished with me yet! Or, another image that I like is that I am like an onion, and God peels off one layer at a time. If He ever showed us all our imperfections at one time, I fear it would be a devastating event!

How thankful I am, though, to know that I don't need to be "crippled" by this fear of people coming to my house! Instead, I should be humble and thankful for the Lord's goodness to me in giving me a nice home to live in, a place where I can welcome God's children with His very own love and care! I am not a perfect housekeeper, my home will never grace the pages of a home design magazine, but that is not what is important. Sharing His love - that is what He calls us to do with the gifts that He gives us. So that is what I will try to do, with His grace and help!