Sunday, March 25, 2018

Easy Corn Casserole


Are you looking for a simple dish that tastes gourmet? This is a great one for the holidays that everyone will think you gave blood, sweat, and tears in making, but really you only had a couple minutes to get something together! Only 5 ingredients!

~ 1 box of Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
~ 1 frozen package of corn
~ 1 can of creamed corn
~ 2/3 cup of vegetable oil
~ 2 T brown sugar

Mix ingredients together. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-55 minutes in a 9x11 pan. Top should brown slightly and knife come out clean when finished. Enjoy! And watch your friends and family compliment you for all your "hard" work. :-)

Sunday, March 18, 2018

A Saint for All Needs


There is no saint quite like St. Joseph to pray to for any special intention. St. Teresa of Avila said: "I wish I could persuade everyone to be devoted to this glorious saint for I have great experience of the blessings which he can obtain from God. I have never known anyone to be truly devoted to him and render him particular services who did not notably advance in virtue for he gives very real help to souls who commend themselves to him."

I just wanted to share this devotion of a 30 Day Prayer to St. Joseph. I have never known it to fail!

"Ever blessed and glorious St. Joseph, kind and loving father, and helpful friend of all in sorrow! Thou art the good father and protector of orphans, the defender of the defenseless, the patron of those in need and sorrow. Look kindly on my request. My sins have drawn down on me the just displeasure of my God, and so I am surrounded with unhappiness. To thee, loving guardian of the Family of Nazareth, do I go for help and protection. Listen, then, I beg thee, with fatherly concern, to my earnest prayers, and obtain for me the favors I ask. I ask it by the infinite mercy of the eternal Son of God, which moved Him to take our nature and to be born into this world of sorrow. I ask it by the weariness and suffering thou didst endure when thou didst find no shelter at the inn of Bethlehem for the Holy Virgin, nor a house where the Son of God could be born. Then, being everywhere refused, thou hadst to allow the Queen of Heaven to give birth to the world's Redeemer in a cave. I ask it by the loveliness and power of that sacred Name, Jesus, which thou didst confer on the adorable Infant. I ask it by the painful torture thou didst feel at the prophecy of holy Simeon, which declared the Child Jesus and His holy Mother future victims of our sins and of their great love for us. I ask it through thy sorrow and pain of soul when the angel declared to thee that the life of the Child Jesus was sought by His enemies. From their evil plan, thou hadst to flee with Him and His Blessed Mother to Egypt. I ask it by all the suffering, weariness, and labors of that long and dangerous journey. I ask it by all thy care to protect the Sacred Child and His Immaculate Mother during thy second journey, when thou wert ordered to return to thine own country. I ask it by thy peaceful life in Nazareth where thou didst meet with so many joys and sorrows. I ask it by thy great distress when the adorable Child was lost to thee and His Mother for three days. I ask it by thy joy at finding Him in the temple, and by the comfort thou didst find at Nazareth, while living in the company of the Child Jesus. I ask it by the wonderful submission He showed in His obedience to thee. I ask it by the perfect love and conformity thou didst show in accepting the Divine order to depart from this life, and from the company of Jesus and Mary. I ask it by the joy which filled thy soul, when the Redeemer of the world, triumphant over death and hell, entered into the possession of His kingdom and led thee into it with special honors. I ask it through Mary's glorious Assumption, and through that endless happiness thou hast with her in the presence of God. O good father! I beg thee, by all thy sufferings, sorrows, and joys, to hear me and obtain for me what I ask. (mention your petitions) Obtain for all those who have asked my prayers everything that is useful to them in the plan of God. Finally, my dear patron and father, be with me and all who are dear to me in our last moments, that we may eternally sing the praises of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. A blameless life, St. Joseph, may we lead, by thy kind patronage from danger freed. Amen."

Sunday, March 11, 2018

True Joy


The Fourth Sunday of Lent, Laetare Sunday, reminds us of the fruit of the Holy Ghost--joy. Joy is a pure gift from God. We can practice charity or experience peace, but the idea of joy and happiness is something God fills us with because it comes from Himself. Joy and goodness go together. As God is all-good, He is the ultimate object of our desires, and we are truly happy when seeking Him.

There is a difference between "feeling happy" and true joy that is supernatural, and that supernatural joy comes from fulfilling God's will in our lives. When we are completely open to God acting in our lives, He takes care of everything for us. For He desires us to be happy more than we want to be happy. 

Joy is also lasting. It may seem like a contradiction in terms, but I think when you are sad it is still possible to experience joy. Because even when we are going through tough times, we can still hold onto the hope and happiness of union with God, which more often than not is achieved through suffering well. 

I've always liked this quote: "Serve the Lord with laughter" by St. Padre Pio. It is a much fuller life to take each experience great or small with a smile.


Sunday, March 4, 2018

Paradise


Everyone has a favorite vacation spot, either a place to return to year after year to make memories or a place that of itself creates a sense of peace and relaxation. Now nothing is permanent here on earth, but I do think there are places that God has made that give us a foretaste of paradise.

That paradise for me is without a doubt the ocean. There is something so majestic about the waves and the immensity of it all. There's a whole world beneath those waters that I'll probably never see in person because I doubt I'll ever scuba dive. There's nothing to compare the sound of the rolling waves to or the soft sands or the ocean breeze or the setting sun. If it was possible to find a heaven on earth, the beach would be it for me.

I love the idea that there really can be a "happy place" you can go to. God has created so much beauty around us that taking little trips reminds us that we can find that at home too. But there's nothing like having a favorite vacation spot that makes you realize there's so much to enjoy in life.