Sunday, June 27, 2010

The War we Wage

I don't want to pay for killing lives with my tax dollars.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Celebration of Father God the Creator

All my life I have driven across the great Mississippi River.  The sunsets and sunrises are brilliant from these arched frames of cement and metal reaching across a vast flowing river.  My dad always has a way of asking a question before he says something moving and profound. One of these crossings, he said:

"Do you know who the greatest artist is, Betsy?" "Who?"  "God is the greatest artist."

“God saw all that he had made, and it was very good” (Gn 1:31)

"None can sense more deeply than you artists, ingenious creators of beauty that you are, something of the pathos with which God at the dawn of creation looked upon the work of his hands. A glimmer of that feeling has shone so often in your eyes when—like the artists of every age—captivated by the hidden power of sounds and words, colours and shapes, you have admired the work of your inspiration, sensing in it some echo of the mystery of creation with which God, the sole creator of all things, has wished in some way to associate you." Letter to artist's Pope John Paul II

And as the oil encroaches upon all that God has rendered in the Gulf of Mexico and it destroys entire ecosystems of salt marsh, fresh marsh and wetlands, it hurts my heart that man could treat the Father's creation so ignorantly.  All of the diversity of life within the areas affected will take many years to be replenished.  Let us pray for the Father Creator's guidance to fix the mess man has made.

Monday, June 7, 2010

The Galactic Catholic Universe Photo of the Day

My morning drive to Pointe Coupee Parish from this past school year.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

The Face of Jesus

In honor of Corpus Christi, I will share a question I had about the body of Christ before I confirmed in the Catholic Church in 1997.

I had one main question before I confirmed, how is it that the host turns to the substance of the Body of Christ?

I could clearly see the accidents of bread made into a small round wafer, but it was hard for me to believe.
Our Lord had a way with me then, He would wait until the moment I wasn't looking, or even paying attention really, and then, WHAM!! Christological truth right in my face.

To keep it short and sweet, there I was on a beach retreat. We were in a visitor's church kneeling on a sandy hard floor in adoration of Christ in a gold monstrance. I was kind of toward the back and basically having a lot of trouble following all of the Fatima prayers added to the rosary that everyone was saying.  All I could think of was the kneeling on sand thing. All of a sudden, I look up at the monstrance and I see Christ's face, like the one on the Shroud of Turin. Only I hadn't seen the Shroud face at that time and this was like a shining defined outline of Christ's face only on the consecrated host part.

Starring at it, I thought, okayyyy, moved a little to one side to check for window glare, moved a little to the other side to check for window glare, the face didn't waver, then I promptly bowed my head to try to keep up with the rest of the 30 college kids praying the rosary.

This personal revelation was enough for me to believe.  God knows how visual I am and I remember clearly that image. I am always happy to receive the accidents of the host in the hopes that the substance will annihilate the wretched sin within. (Much like the scene in LOTRs when Sauron loses the ring and his evil is vanquished for the moment.)

Gotta love transubstantiation.

The Galactic Catholic Universe: Louisiana Wildlife & Natural Surrounds Photo of the Day

"The richness of the marshes in Louisiana provide a banquet for the state's largest group of tourists - the migratory birds who return annually to enjoy the hospitality of the marsh. The naturalists who count the birds in the spring and fall have identified more than 180 species, ranging from Canadian geese to tiny hummingbirds."  Louisiana: The History of an American State

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The Galactic Catholic Universe: Louisiana Wildlife & Natural Surrounds Photo of the Day

"The Marsh region lies along Louisiana's Gulf Coast. The Marsh region is also the transition zone between the land and the ocean.  The part of the region closest tot he Gulf of Mexico is the salt marsh, whose waters are brackish.  The saltwater  vegetation includes such plants as salt grass, cord grass, black rush, and the mangle bush or mangrove." Louisiana: The History of an American State

Friday, June 4, 2010

The Galactic Catholic Universe: Louisiana Natural Surrounds & Wildlife Photo of the Day

"The story of Louisiana cannot be told without the Mississippi representing both the stage and a main character. The Mississippi River area covers more than 1,245,000 square miles, draining at least part of thirty-one states.  The Mississippi funnels 375 billion gallons of water through Louisiana each day to the Gulf of Mexico." Louisiana:The History of an American State

Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Power to Transform with Love

New stamps for my collection: Love your Pets!

One of my favorite books is God Calling.

Today’s quote: “Remember that Love is the power which transforms the world. Love not only of Me, Love not only of the few dear to you, but Love of all – of the publicans, the sinners, the harlots – Love. It is the only weapon with which sin can be driven out. Drive sin out with Love.”

I am on a love kick, but it is fitting for the readings today as Jesus expresses : “you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is that you must love your neighbor as yourself.” Mark 12:30

In the first quote the suggestion is that only Love can drive sin out. Love of whom? Love of what? Christ answers this in his message to the questioning Pharisees. In the past month I have been applying to teaching positions out of state. One of the things that is distracting is to get comfortable in your station in life and end up not serving the Lord in what He calls you too. The center of love becomes not God, but material desires.

The way that I have refocused my love is to listen to readings such as these and hear that call to build the Church. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 12:8 “One may have the gift of preaching with wisdom given to him by the Spirit; another may have the gift of preaching instruction given him by the same Spirit; and another the gift of faith given by the same Spirit” and he goes on to describe the very best in Spirit that all men are called too.

I questioned myself as to what my gifts were. Certainly I am called to instruct and to teach. Then how can I build the Church? Paul comes right back to it. “If I have all the eloquence of men or of angels, but speak without love, I am simply a gong booming or a cymbal clashing.” 1 Cor 13:1

It is very easy to get distracted in this world with the ability to earn a great living and be as blessed in life as you can be. I hate to say that I am extremely blessed to the point of ridiculousness. That said, I have always felt a call and a duty to serve God, but I still get distracted by shopping and the desire to buy a million books.

I hope I am doing okay as I try to find the best position for me, (hopefully in a Catholic school again) but maybe I am called to be a teacher to those who are most in need of love. Pray for me as I am trying to relocate to Florida. I pray that I am continually reminded of loving others even though it is hard and sometimes, they just don’t want to be loved, because they have never known love.

“You must want love more than anything else; but still hope for the spiritual gifts as well.” 1 Cor 14:1

The Galactic Catholic Universe: Louisiana Natural Surrounds & Wildlife Photo of the Day

"Louisiana has almost 5,000 miles of navigable rivers, bayous, creeks, and canals. The largest natural lake (625 square miles) in Louisiana is Lake Pontchartrain. Lake Pontchartrain is just 10 to 16 feet deep, a tidal lagoon connected to the Gulf of Mexico by a narrow passage, the Rigolets." Louisiana:The History of an American State

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Literacy of the Wetlands

This video was part of a class project for promoting literacy and service-learning.  The students were invited to participate with permission from their parents.  I am hoping they are thinking of what they learned with what is in the current news in Louisiana.  Don't mind the dull parts, the really exciting stuff depicts the wetlands. I drove down to Lake Verret and all over the area getting these video shots.

The Galactic Catholic Universe: Louisiana Natural Surrounds & Wildlife Photo of the Day

"The largest body of water affecting Louisiana is the Gulf of Mexico. Not only does the Gulf serve as the southern boundary of the state, but its wide continental shelf contributes many resources to the state." Louisiana: The History of an American State