9 Days For Life 2018


9 Days for Life is a “digital pilgrimage” of prayer and action focused on cherishing the gift of every person’s life. A multi-faceted novena highlighting a different intention each day provides reflections, bonus information, and suggested actions.  This year’s Respect Life’s theme is “Be Not Afraid”.

This novena begins today January 18th and runs through the 26th.  To participate in this novena just go to USCCB website and fill out your info and they will send you a daily message via text or email with a link to the day’s intentions.  Or, I will be posting each day’s info here on my blog, and you can follow along here.

This program is very near and dear to my heart.  I believe that life is a precious gift from God.  A gift so special that it should never be up to any human being to decide to end it.

That is my belief.  I realize that everyone who follows my blog doesn’t feel the same way.  I hope that you will respect my beliefs even though you may disagree with me and not post unpleasant comments.

This is the information for Day 1.

Intercession: May a culture of life grow ever stronger in our communities.

Prayers: Our Father, 3 Hail Marys, Glory Be

Reflection: From each tiny child waiting to be born, to people nearing death, all are precious and deserve our care and protection. Women and men suffering after abortion, individuals tempted to end their lives, expectant mothers facing challenging pregnancies, people pushed to the margins of society by a “throwaway culture,” and every other person—each “has a place in God’s heart from all eternity” (Amoris laetitia, 168).

As Pope Saint John Paul II reminds us in The Gospel of Life, we are asked not only to love and honor human life, but also “to work with perseverance and courage” to establish “a new culture of life, the fruit of the culture of truth and of love” (no 77).

Acts of Reparation (choose one):

  • “Unplug” for some time praying in silence with a short reflection on this year’s Respect Life theme, “Be Not Afraid” (www.usccb.org/be-not-afraid).
  • Use one of our Respect Life social media toolkits (www.usccb.org/prolifetools) to build up a culture of life on social media.
  • Do you love your cup of tea or coffee? Fast from caffeine today, or try your coffee black.

One Step Further: Watching the news and reading the headlines, we may sometimes feel helpless seeing the heartbreaking lack of respect for human life. How do we respond to Pope Saint John Paul II’s invitation when our efforts to make a difference feel small? “How to Build a Culture of Life” (www.usccb.org/culture-of-life) briefly explains where to start.

God bless!



The Immaculate Heart of Mary



In the Catholic Church the month of August is dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  This is a devotional name used to refer to the interior life of the Blessed Virgin Mary, her joys, sorrows, her virtues and hidden perfections, and most of all her virginal love for God the Father, her maternal love for her son Jesus, and her compassionate love for all persons.  The image of the Immaculate Heart of Mary with the pierced heart is the most popular representation.

I have always felt very close to the Blessed Mother.  She is my patron saint and our heavenly mother who intercedes for us whenever we ask and even when we don’t because she knows our needs.  When we say prayers to Mary, we are not asking her to grant what we ask,  but are asking her to take our needs to her divine Son.

Prayer to the Immaculate Heart of Mary

O Most Blessed Mother, heart of love, heart of mercy, ever listening, caring, consoling, hear our prayer. As your children, we implore your intercession with Jesus your Son. Receive with understanding and compassion the petitions we place before you today, especially those so deep in our heart.

We are comforted in knowing your heart is ever open to those who ask for your prayer. We trust to your gentle care and intercession, those whom we love and who are sick or lonely or hurting. Help all of us, Holy Mother, to bear our burdens in this life until we may share eternal life and peace with God forever.

Many people misunderstand devotion to the saints with worshiping them.  Only God is worshiped.  Quoting Catholic Answers,  “1 Timothy 2:5, Paul says that Christians should intercede: “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all men, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life, godly and respectful in every way. This is good, and pleasing to God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim. 2:1–4). Clearly, then, intercessory prayers offered by Christians on behalf of others is something “good and pleasing to God,” not something infringing on Christ’s role as mediator.”



The Season of Advent

Yesterday was the beginning of Advent.  It’s a time when we prepare for Christmas.  The birth of Jesus Christ our Lord.

So much of our preparations have lost the meaning for celebrating.  Decorating, baking, shopping, partying…the list goes on and on.  But do we stop and think about the why?  Over the years Christmas has taken on a very secular meaning and so has Advent.

Advent is a time to prepare spiritually for the miracle of Christ’s birth.  A time to cleanse our spirit in readiness to receive the New Born King.  A time of introspection.  A time to be prayerful.  A time to be penitent.  A time to be joyful in anticipation.

There is nothing wrong with the shopping or decorating or baking in preparation for celebrating, but without spiritual preparation too, we lose so much of the joy of Advent.

Happy Advent!

The Beginning of Advent

I always love when Advent arrives.  It means that Christmas is just a month away.  When I was a child we had an Advent Wreath.  We used it in the beginning, but as the season wore on it was forgotten.  I guess that’s the price you pay when both parents work.  Too much to do in too short of time.

Again, when I married and started my family I had an Advent Wreath.  I was in nursing school at the time.  After nursing school I began working nights so the practice of lighting the Advent Wreath fell by the way side.  Actually, when my children completed 8th grade CCD, I let my faith go by the wayside too.  Something I am not proud of.

So this year I treated myself to an Advent Wreath and I am so excited to begin the practice of lighting it at supper time.  I had to research the prayers and blessing for it.  I was surprised that now a Christ candle has been incorporated into the practice.  On Christmas a white center candle is lit.  Often a white pillar candle is just added in the center of the wreath, so no new wreath is necessary.  As I think about this I see that it is a very appropriate option and one I may include in my new tradition.  I have three grandchildren who live close by.  I am anxious to teach them about Advent and the importance of the season.

Daily Reflections for Advent & Christmas by Bishop Robert F. Morneau, is a wonderful little annual book that my parish distributes to us.  It contains what Scripture versus for each day as well as reflection on them and a concluding prayer.  I got mine last night after Mass.  I really like how Bishop Morneau uses down to earth reflections bringing God’s word into today’s life.  If you have an opportunity to get one, you won’t be disappointed.

I am hoping that during the Advent and Christmas seasons, I will come to better terms with my husband’s death and the consequences he left behind.  I miss him and I pray he is with the Lord.

Happy Advent & God Bless!