With all of our imperfections, we begin and end each day at the foot of the cross. It is here where our story begins and we pray it is where it will end. "Jesus said: Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light." ~Matthew 11:28-30~
Listen to God's voice at the foot of the crucifix." ~St. Gaspar del Bufaro~
Sunday, September 23, 2012
This And That...September Liturgical Highlights
It's hard to believe that September has flown by already... Thought I'd share a few of my favorite liturgical things from the month:)
Happy Birthday Mama! Mary's birthday was one of my favorite feast days this month. Each year our Little Flowers and Blue Knight's group kicks off the school year with a picnic to celebrate the Nativity of Our Lady. The highlight was having Father M. graciously stopped by to bless everyone.
One of the *new things* that we did this year was make a prayer box. Everyone wrote out their prayer intentions on slips of paper to place them in the box. We got permission to place them on the altar for Our Lady's Intercession. (The Mass for the Nativity of Our Lady was being held the next morning.)
It's a little dark but the children were placing their intentions at the foot of the altar.
Isn't this a cute photo (below)? My friend's little one "running to Mama":)
Holy Name of Mary~ We said goodbye to one of our favorite priests on this feast day...Never an easy thing to do! A group of our parish friends made dinner, hosted at our house. I had NO napkin rings that weren't Christmas themed so this easy idea emerged under pressure:) It's an easy idea that could be used for any liturgical feast, tea, or party:)
Saintly Napkin Rings
I just took some wired ribbon and a photo of our parish Fatima shrine (changing the shape and size via my photo program) and printed on card stock...
Everything was connected by my trusty friend, the glue gun:)
I don't have the best precision when it comes to scissors but hey, it all worked out!
Exaltation of the Holy Cross:
Can I tell you how much we are loving American Heritage Girls? (AHG) A troop was recently started at our parish and it's been such a wonderful scouting program and Christian-based character development for girls. Princess made these cupcakes on the Feast of the Holy Cross for our AHG National Day of Service, the next day. If you don't know about the failings of Girl Scouts of America, please click this link and be informed.
The girls visited a home for the mentally disabled that had never had visitors! That alone had a huge impact on our hearts...
Each girl made their own cupcakes based on the Free To Be A Blessing badge.
The remainder of the cupcakes were delivered to a home for abused children:)
It was a SWEET day on many levels...In fact, the Catholic News Service also featured a nice article in support of this American Heritage Girls National Day of Service...Thrilled to have great press from our faith:) I just can't say enough about American Heritage Girls and its positive program. We simply love it!
On the home front...I've been reflecting on how serving others really starts at home, the place where it's most difficult to serve. Sometimes it's easy to serve people outside our homes when we can step out and put on a happy face for a moment in time. But when we really think about serving Jesus 24/7, day in an day out, by caring for our spouse and children or even extended family, it's just plain tough stuff. As a parent, herein lies a serious challenge to care for the needy in our homes, each and every day. I am reminded that an example of joyful service in my home begins with me. Probably the biggest obstacle many parents face is being fully present with their families, not just being with them. With all of the technological distractions, I know that I fail each day and I grow weary of my shortcomings. Yet I try, try, again, keenly aware of my desire to be of better service to my family.
This beautiful sunrise on my morning jog reminded me of the beauty that God creates for us each day. Through His gentle hand, we have the opportunity to see Him in all we do...And begin again, thanks to His loving grace.
I'm working on being patient with myself (which I am not good at) and finding peace while working from the inside out. This daily online retreat from the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales is a gentle spiritual boost that speaks to me right now. Check it out! You may also subscribe to the daily retreat via FB. They have Advent and Lenten online retreats as well:) "He who is fretted with his own failings will not correct them. All profitable correction comes from a calm, peaceful mind." ~St. Francis de Sales~