waters rising

 

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Photo courtesy of Pinterest

September 13 is the feast day (in the Roman Catholic Church) of Saint John Chrysostom, bishop and Doctor of the Church. An Early Church Father best known for his preaching and public speaking, Saint John was given the name Chrysostomos, meaning “golden mouthed,” after death.

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Photo courtesy of Pinterest

What set him apart from others in his time period was his ability to apply scripture to everyday circumstances, teaching people how to incorporate the Gospel in all that they did. Continue reading “waters rising”

mvp

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I am terrible with getting birthday greeting cards to their recipients on time!

Seriously.

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It’s a terrible flaw of mine.

Admittedly, I never FORGET the special day.

I honestly lift them or their special occasion – such as an anniversary- up in prayer on the appointed day.

However, I do FORGET to send the greeting through snail-mail.

Weeks.

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Sometimes even MONTHS Continue reading “mvp”

I found my 50 heroes!

I woke up this morning

 to see my most favorite hero

basking in a beautiful light!

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“Hail Mary, full of grace” Luke 1:28

Even Helen thought so too!

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“Can I be a Hero too?”

A quick stroll

through my yard

and you will meet more heroes

of mine.

Such as St. Rita

who is affectionately hung

below a rose tree.

St. Rita is known to leave behind roses

when prayer intentions have been answered

(through the grace of Our God)

&

I do so verily hope the prolific blooms this year

signal a pretty hefty prayer

being answered for our family!

Behind her is beloved St. Francis of Assisi…

lover of animals; which is why he stands appropriately near

our bird-feeders.

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And St. Joseph, another favorite hero of mine and defender of the Holy Family,

hangs near a favorite sitting spot of Cuppycake’s & mine.

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What is a Saint?

A saint is one who has been recognized for having an exceptional degree of holiness, sanctity, and virtue.

What is a Hero?

A person of distinguished courage or ability, admired for their brave deeds and noble qualities. 2. a person who, in the opinion of others, has heroic qualities or has performed a heroic act and is regarded as a model or ideal.

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“I’m pretty sure I fit the criteria for both.”

And so it is for me that the two are synonymous as I have not met a Saint who has not qualified as Hero. And while Hero’s, on the other hand, aren’t always made a Saint…does that mean we all shouldn’t at least aspire to be one?

Our parish priest, Fr. Larry Richards, often reminds us we should all aspire to be Saints!  That when we leave this earthly life our lives will have been so devoted to pointing always to Him, despite the trials we may face, that our parishes will be filled with statues of each one of us!

(I wrote in a previous post what I would envision my statue to denote.)

In our modern day vernacular we have made the term “SAINT” synonymous with perfection.  If someone lives a life above reproach we say “He is a real saint,”
if one dedicates their life to solely doing good works, such as Mother Teresa, we say “She is a real saint,” if one lives a life exemplary of good morals and high standards we ascribe to them the “title” of saint.

We have set some pretty high standards for achieving sainthood!

(Rightfully so!)

And yet…

I do believe the Saints themselves would say quite differntly.

They would remind us that to attain Sainthood is a courageous battle to be fought daily, with great joy! That there is no perfection to be found in living the life of a Saint, only imperfect people (sinners) striving to love Him always…in ALL ways and doing so heroically!

Rejoice not over me, O my enemy; when I fall, I shall rise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to me.  

Michael 7:8

St. Paul himself, declares in Romans 7:15, this struggle to do good is difficult!

“I do not understand my own actions.  For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate,” Romans 7:15

However, we should never stop trying!

Will we tire?

Yes.

Should we quit?

Never.

And that is exactly why the Saints are my heroes.

Heroes never quit!

They fall down…

and then

get up.

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“Does the ‘no-quitting’ part include a dog-treat when I get back up again?”

In this past half-century I have met many Heroes!

All of whom I have drawn strength from at various moments of my life,

some more than others,

but each equally as important.

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Outside the Shrine of St. Gemma Galgani in Lucca, Italy.

I hope you will find a hero (or more) to fall in love with!

Remember they are who we can draw strength from as we aspire to be

saints of our own…no matter how great the effort

& no matter how many times

we need to get back up

 to try again!

 My 50 Heroes:

  1. Mary, the Blessed Virgin
  2. St. Faustina Kowalska 
  3. St. Monica
  4. St. Joseph
  5. St. Rita
  6. St. Gemma Galgani
  7. St. Therese, “The Little Flower”
  8. St. Gerard
  9. St. Augustine
  10. St. Elizabeth
  11. St. Ann
  12. St. Joachim
  13. St. Katharine Drexel
  14. St. Frances of Rome
  15. St. Teresa of Avila
  16. St. Maria Goretti
  17. St Rose of Lima
  18. St. Michael
  19. St. John Vianney
  20. St. Philomena
  21. St. Martha
  22. St. Justin Martyr
  23. St. Clare
  24. St. John the Baptist
  25. St. Anthony
  26. St. Sebastian
  27. St. John the Beloved
  28. St. John Paul II
  29. Blessed Teresa of Calcutta (to be declared a Saint September 4, 2016)
  30. St. Francis of Assisi
  31. St. Padre Pio
  32. St. Paul the Apostle
  33. St. Dominic
  34. St. Peregrine
  35. St. Dymphna
  36. St. Catherine of Siena
  37. St. Joan of Arc
  38. St. Veronica
  39. St. Lawerence
  40. St. Ignatius of Loyola 
  41. St. Andrew
  42. St. Nicholas
  43. St. Ambrose
  44. St. Bruno
  45. St. Francis Xavier
  46. St. Jude
  47. St. Maximillian Kolbe
  48. St. Stanislaus
  49. St. Vincent de Paul
  50. St. Abigail

hugs n’ blessings to all those heroes

who I will meet in my next half-century!

Will you be one of them?