Friday, November 30, 2012

An Advent novena download just for you

The Church Ladies know that remembering to pray a novena even once a day can be a feat, so the Saint Andrew Novena (15 times a day!) is a special challenge.  To make it a little easier, we've created a reminder for you to put in a place you likely look at several times a day: your computer desktop!  Go to our Photo Album to download one of the designs in the proper resolution for your monitor (I made them in the three most common screen resolutions of our visitors; apologies to the outliers).  Just select the photo, click "Actions," and then "Download Photo."  Happy Advent from the Pious Sodality!

Image: Nativity by Gentile da Fabriano (1423)

Image: The Holy Family (stained glass), 
Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish, Clovis, CA

Saint Andrew's Novena

So-named because it begins today on Saint Andrew's feast day, this novena actually lasts until Christmas day. It is a traditional Advent devotion asking God to grant a favor in honor of the birth of His Son.  This prayer is traditionally recited 15 times each day.  You're on your own for that, but I will be posting a daily reminder throughout Advent.

Hail and blessed be the hour and moment in which the Son of God was born of the most pure Virgin Mary, at midnight, in Bethlehem, in piercing cold. In that hour, vouchsafe, O my God! to hear my prayer and grant my desires (mention your intentions here), through the merits of Our Savior Jesus Christ, and of His Blessed Mother. Amen.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

What I Wore Sunday

Shamelessly borrowing from promoting Jennifer Fulwiler's article on the topic, What I Wore Sunday is a relatively new Church Lady phenomena that may be of interest.  Basically, there is a host blog to which you can link a photo on the topic from your own blog.  The best part, however, is happening on a deeper level as women are finding support for the idea of dressing well for Holy Mass and that is leading them to prepare in other ways as well.

 Kathryn Whitaker described it well over at Austin Catholic New Media when she said of her own participation in the virtual festival:  Ever since I started the link up, I've found myself consciously thinking about preparing myself for Mass, not just physically, but spiritually. There's been a bit more time to pray when we arrive, I've even scanned the Magnificat App on my iPhone for the readings. I can't recall the last time I did that. When you prepare the body, you also prepare the mind. 

Dweej saysIs it so sad that looking through everyone's What I Wore Sunday posts has become one of the highlights of my week?  I want to say, but I won't. You know why?  Because it makes me feel like we all kind of get to hang out together.  Making this virtual community even more of...well, a community.  And that's what I really love, more than anything else, about this whole internet thing.

And full circle back to Jennifer: I've been making an effort to dress well for Mass ever since then, with varying levels of success. It's never easy to get a family of seven out the door, and there are still plenty of mornings when I need to throw on the first thing I can grab while shouting over my shoulder for everyone to get in the car. But on the occasions that I do make the small sacrifices necessary to transform the way I look on the outside, I find that it transforms me on the inside as well.

I know our own Gianna has posted a link and it seems like a natural for the other Church Ladies to do it as well (since they're all adorable and take great care in dressing for Mass).  Anyway, check it out.  It a fun idea with a worthy goal.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A bit of a revelation

I realized while pureeing pumpkin today, that I could avoid dirtying more dishes by using the blender to mix and store my pumpkin pie filling. If you weigh out the pumpkin, you can even finish the pureeing with the other liquids, which means less scraping down the sides. Even if you're using canned, I really liked this method because it's very easy to see when everything is combined thoroughly.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Instead of Martha Stewart, Try St. Mary and St. Martha

Thanksgiving can be a stressful holiday, with the fattening stressful mix of intense cooking, intense cleaning, visiting relatives and the hard push of the TV, only the 32 days until Christmas, how do we make this holiday a day of blessed sacred time?  By following the Saints, Saint Mary in being present and in awe of Jesus, and Saint Martha and being the hands and feet that prepare the feast out of love for others, love for Christ.

Click over to this timely post from the My Year of Faith group blog from the diocese of Fort Wayne/South Bend, Indiana.  There, you'll see Sherry Antonetti's suggestions for Thanksgiving hostesses to relieve stress, realign priorities, and re-energize a sense of gratitude.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

“When a man loves a woman, he has to become worthy of her. The higher her virtue, the more noble her character, the more devoted she is to truth, justice, goodness, the more a man has to aspire to be worthy of her. The history of civilization could actually be written in terms of the level of its women.” 
― Fulton J. Sheen, Life is Worth Living

Friday, November 9, 2012

Naturally, I didn't run across this...

...until the last day of the Octave of All Souls'.

Oh well, maybe next year. I think I'd have to scrounge up some Protestant friends to invite over for the occasion. All in the name of ecumenism.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Holy Father's Prayer Intentions for November, 2012

General Intention: Ministers of the Gospel. That bishops, priests, and all ministers of the Gospel may bear the courageous witness of fidelity to the crucified and risen Lord.

Missionary Intention: Pilgrim Church. That the pilgrim Church on earth may shine as a light to the nations.

O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer You all my prayers, works, joys and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of Your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, in reparation for my sins, for the intentions of all our associates, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father for this month. Amen.