Sunday, July 29, 2018

Canadian West Saga

I am always on the lookout for a good book, aren't you? I am a fan, like many "Hearties," of the When Calls the Heart tv series, even after the season five finale ;-) but have you ever read the books that inspired the series?

I recently became engrossed in the Canadian West Saga by Janette Oke. It is quite different from the tv series in terms of characters, but still has that heartwarming charm of a budding romance that blooms into marriage and family life. 

The four novels are When Calls the Heart, When Comes the Spring, When Breaks the Dawn, and When Hope Springs New. There are two that follow, but they are not part of the original four. I have not quite finished reading them, but so far each has held my attention as a light and easy read to relax at the end of the day. 

What draws me the most is the Christian aspect, where the characters turn to God often and how they strive for morality and virtue amidst hardships out West. The plots are not like a mystery novel, where you turn every page in suspense, but there are aspects about the story that you don't always see coming. It reminds you of a life that was simpler and could still remain if we only put down our electronics and let books take us back!

Sunday, July 22, 2018

The Ultimate Gift

This is the first movie I've seen in awhile that was truly moving. A movie that does not seek merely to entertain but to focus on the concept of what are authentic gifts in our lives. We are introduced to a young man named Jason who has always had easy access to money, pleasures, and the things of the world. With the death of his grandfather, Jason is forced to go through a series of discovering certain "gifts" in order to receive his inheritance. 

The Twelve Gifts in the Ultimate Gift: the gift of work, money, friends, learning, problems, family, laughter, dreams, giving, gratitude, a day, and love -- these are the ordinary parts of anyone's life that we take for granted or don't see in the right light. 

We are also introduced to the character of Emily, whose spunk and frankness will charm anyone. Emily gives Jason a reason to appreciate the gifts in a completely different way and seek to fulfill the requirements of his grandfather regardless of money. Jason must also face the reason for his father's death, but there may also be a little romance thrown in there for Jason.

Although the movie deals with some serious questions, it is still filled with enough laughter and light moments to make the film both heartwarming and a tear jerker. Most memorable quote: Emily: "My dream? My dream was the perfect day....and I'm just finishing it. My dream is to be with people I love, who love each other, and who love me."

Wish I had seen this ten years ago when it first came out ;-)

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Scapular Stories

Available on Etsy in custom sizes!

July 16th is the feast of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel! Our Lady said to St. Simon Stock: “Take this scapular, it shall be a sign of salvation, a protection in danger and a pledge of peace. Whosoever dies wearing this scapular shall not suffer eternal fire . . . wear it devoutly and perseveringly. It is my garment. To be clothed in it means you are continually thinking of me, and I in turn, am always thinking of you and helping you to secure eternal life.”

Sabbatine Privilege:

1. Wear the scapular devoutly and continually.
2. Observe chastity according to one’s state in life.
3. Recite daily the Little Office of Our Lady, or abstinence on Wednesdays and Saturdays, or the rosary with permission from a priest to substitute.

Our Lady promised to liberate the soul from purgatory who fulfills these requirements upon the Saturday after their death.

Here's just one miraculous story of Our Lady's protection of those who wear her scapular: "A French priest on pilgrimage was on his way to offer Mass, but realized he forgot his scapular. He knew he would be late if he went back for it, but he could not accept offering Mass at Our Lady’s altar without wearing her scapular. The priest returned with it and was in the middle of offering Mass when a man approached the altar with a gun. He shot the priest in the back, but somehow the priest continued to say the Mass prayers as if nothing happened. The faithful thought the bullet miraculously missed the priest; however, they discovered afterwards the bullet had been found ADHERING TO THE BROWN SCAPULAR, which the priest had refused to be without." While this story is truly amazing and inspiring, most importantly, Our Lady helps those who wear her scapular receive eternal life.

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Parents of the Little Flower

July 12th is the feast of Sts. Louis and Zelie Martin, the parents of St. Therese, the Little Flower. If you are looking for good reads on them, the books above are excellent! Both parents originally wanted to enter religious life, but God called them to marriage. They raised up a family of saints and became saints themselves! Their heroic virtue in family life is an inspiration and example of how we are to live.

"To the love of God, to the spirit of faith and hope was joined in my father's character an immense charity toward his neighbor. That was his outstanding virtue." ~ Celine Martin

"Our mother was abnegation personified, gifted with great courage, and an extraordinarily energetic character. She had a very sensitive and very generous heart, turned always to God, in whom she had a truly heroic confidence." ~ Celine Martin

"My parents always seemed to me to be saints. We were filled with respect and admiration for them. I sometimes asked myself if it were possible to find their equals on earth. Around me I could see nothing like them." ~ Pauline Martin (Mother Agnes of Jesus)

"God gave me a father and a mother who were more worthy of heaven than of earth." ~ St. Therese Martin (the Little Flower)

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Precious Blood Chaplet

Check out this sacramental available at for the feast of the Precious Blood of Jesus!


The 33 beads symbolize the 33 years of Our Lord’s life. The seven mysteries honor the seven principal sheddings of the Precious Blood of Jesus. Pope Pius VII granted a plenary indulgence to those who recite this chaplet daily for a month.

Begin with the ejaculation: “O God, come to my assistance. O Lord, make haste to help me.”
One Glory Be.

First Mystery: The Circumcision
Pray for chastity of soul and body.
Five Our Father’s and one Glory Be.
V. We beseech Thee, therefore, help Thy servants. R. Whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy Precious Blood.

Second Mystery: The Agony in the Garden
Pray for the spirit of prayer.
Five Our Father’s and one Glory Be.
V. We beseech Thee, therefore, help Thy servants. R. Whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy Precious Blood.

Third Mystery: The Scourging at the Pillar
Pray for the grace of mortification.
Five Our Father’s and one Glory Be.
V. We beseech Thee, therefore, help Thy servants. R. Whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy Precious Blood.

Fourth Mystery: The Crowning with Thorns
Pray for the grace to despise worldly honors.
Five Our Father’s and one Glory Be.
V. We beseech Thee, therefore, help Thy servants. R. Whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy Precious Blood.

Fifth Mystery: The Carrying of the Cross.
Pray for patience.
Five Our Father’s and one Glory Be.
V. We beseech Thee, therefore, help Thy servants. R. Whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy Precious Blood.

Sixth Mystery: The Crucifixion
Pray for true contrition of your sins.
Five Our Father’s and one Glory Be.
V. We beseech Thee, therefore, help Thy servants. R. Whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy Precious Blood.

Seventh Mystery: Piercing of the Side of Jesus
Pray for the grace of perseverance.
Three Our Father’s and one Glory Be.
V. We beseech Thee, therefore, help Thy servants. R. Whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy Precious Blood.

Conclude with: 
“Almighty and everlasting God, Who hast appointed Thine only-begotten Son the Savior of the world, and hast willed to be appeased with His Blood; grant us, we beseech Thee, so to venerate this Blood, the price of our salvation, and so to be defended by its power upon earth from the evils of this present life, that in Heaven we may enjoy its everlasting fruit. Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, world without end. Amen.”

“The more you shall have contemplated My Painful Wounds on earth, the higher shall be your contemplation of them in Heaven.” ~ Our Lord to Sister Mary Martha Chambon

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Need a Quick Dish?

This has to be one of the simplest dinner dishes that actually appeals to the sweet tooth. Get two or three chicken breasts (cut into 1 inch cubes) and cook in a frying pan. Cook a cup of rice in a separate pot. Use a cup of riced frozen broccoli to heat up. Mix all together when chicken is cooked. Add some salt, pepper, garlic salt, and (a lot) of brown sugar. 

A colorful arrangement awaits your dinner table, fit to serve five hungry mouths. And I might add, that a root beer float doesn't hurt to accompany it (or any dish). :-)

Hope you enjoy this easy meal that can be accomplished in 15 minutes! 

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Pray for Priests

One of the most noble tasks we can accomplish in this world is prayer. Prayer is our direct link to God. When we pray before the tabernacle, it is better than being granted an audience before a king, for we are beholding the King of Kings. He is ready to hear our every request and answers them all, even if not in the way we expect. 

We forget though that this privilege of praying before our King is brought to us only by His priests. Without the priest, we would not be able to adore Jesus in the tabernacle, nor receive Him at Mass, nor attend Mass at all. A priest is another Christ and as such holds such a great dignity in his vocation. These days it is hard to find truly holy priests, but that is where prayer comes in.

Today is Fathers' Day and our priests fall under that title in the spiritual sense because they guide us as children to reach Heaven. We must pray for them that they may be holy and that there may be more priests who give their lives to such a praiseworthy mission. There is no greater goal than winning souls for Christ. Let us support our priests and be grateful to them for helping us in our path of sanctity by remembering them daily before the tabernacle, especially today as our spiritual fathers.