Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Cody, Super Bowl Sunday, and a request

Looks like Cody is going home, at least for awhile!

From his Aunt Denise:

Dear Friends,

Thank you all for your continued prayers.Cody turns 18 this Sunday (yes, Super Bowl Sunday) He is a great Colts fan and would be delighted to know that they are in the Super Bowl. In fact several of the Colts players were up to see him in the hospital over Christmas. The family has so much support from friends and family there, but our family here feels helpless to do anything but pray for them. I would like to send Cody a "Spiritual Bouquet" for his birthday and would like to include prayers and messages from all of the prayer warriors who have been so diligently praying for him and his family. If you are interested and would like to take just a few moments to jot down a short message of prayer and/or encouragement for them and email it to me, I would love to compile the messages and send it to him for his birthday. I will take the messages that I receive and send them out on Friday, so if you have a couple of minutes before then, I would be delighted to include your prayer/message in the packet.

Their faith has been their rock through all of this. All of your prayers have meant so much to them.

God bless you for your continued prayers!


Cody, while still semi-comatose, is going home prior to further rehab. The doctors think that his familiar surroundings, voices, smells, and noises may encourage his complete awakening. When he is more responsive, he will return to the hospital for more rehabilitation.

To contribute to Cody's "Birthday Spiritual Bouquet" use the "email Kelly" button on your left. I'll forward all messages to Denise.


Sunday, January 28, 2007

When "junk" ain't junk!

YONKERS - A collector's passion for Roman Catholic books and devotional objects became a surprise blessing for a church when a junk-removal company came calling.

David Soto, 32, an employee with 1-800-GOT-JUNK?, contacted St. Peter's Church at 91 Ludlow St. this month after the company was hired to clear out an elderly man's two-bedroom apartment on Sunnyside Drive. The residence was packed floor-to-ceiling with goods in bags and boxes.

"It was as if we were taking from a religious store," Soto said.

The man, whom the church and company declined to identify, was moving into a nursing home, and his family hired the company to throw out his possessions.

"My background is Catholic, and I couldn't throw this out," said Soto, a Yonkers resident who served as an altar boy at St. Peter's and grew up in the parish.

Read the whole thing. Great story! And the "Got Junk" Yonkers franchise seems like a great company, too.

Father Robert Drinan, S.J. died today

Pray for his soul. I know you will.


Friday, January 26, 2007

William Lee Clark, 1946 - 1986

When my husband Bill died suddenly at the age of forty, I was a young, and, to put it charitably, rather "indifferent" Catholic.

A few weeks after his death, I had a strange but comforting dream.

I saw a beautiful lady cradling a battered but breathing Bill in her arms, comforting him, and holding a Rosary.

Upon awakening, I was vaguely aware of the fact that my "Catholicism" had been nothing to write home -- or Heaven -- about.

But mostly I had a strong urge to pray the Rosary.

This presented a bit of a problem, since I hadn't prayed the Rosary in years...couldn't even remember anything about it other than the "Hail Mary" and the "Our Father" were important parts of it.

So I did some investigating...

And found that at a nearby chapel, the Rosary was prayed daily after Mass.

That was 21 years ago. Because my husband died and because of a dream -- was it a dream? -- I came home to the Catholic Church.

I love you, Mother Mary. Thank you for showing me the way back.

Bill Clark died on January 27, 1986. Please pray for the happy repose of his soul.


(I love you, Bill. Requiest in pace. And I can't believe you'd be 61 years old!!!)

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Examination of conscience, Saint Paul-style

If you've ever been to a Catholic or any Christian wedding, chances are you've heard the passage from Paul's 1 Corinthians 13, about love...or charity.

But it's really not a "romantic" passage.

Let me tell you what I mean...or rather, what a quiet, thoughtful fellow in a Bible study class I attended tonight offered as a reflection.

Quiet yourself, read the passage below, only try substituting your name for the word "love."

Love is patient, love is kind.
Love is not jealous, love is not pompous,
love is not inflated, it is not rude,
love does not seek its own interests,
love is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury,
love does not rejoice over wrongdoing
but (love) rejoices with the truth.
Love bears all things, believes all things,
hopes all things, endures all things.

I don't know how you did, but when I tried this I really realized I had a lot to pray about...and to work on.

God bless you...and me too!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Baby killing? Okay. War in Iraq? No way!

Using the key words "march washington abortion 2007" will give you about 212 hits on Google News.

Substitute the word "war" for "abortion" and...let's just say you'll get a lot more.

I'm not blaming Google News. I don't know whom to blame, if anybody.

But I'm sad to realize that on the very day thousands and thousands of people marched on Washington to show their defense for the innocent unborn, many if not most media outlets were already publicizing an "anti-war" rally.

Some people think terrorism struck the United States on 9/11/01.

They're off by about 24 years.

Monday, January 22, 2007

45 million+

Forgive us our trespasses...and deliver us from evil. Amen.

Friday, January 19, 2007

New blog! "Grant them rest"

Dedicated to the souls in Purgatory, this blog, according to its Mission Statement, is to have Masses said and multitudes of people praying for the repose of those souls who have gone before us.

Check it out, and do remember to pray for the souls in Purgatory. Thanks!

Madison Wisconsin and make-believe "oaths"

Dom rightly asks: "When is an oath not an oath?"

You've got to read this to believe it, and maybe you won't even after reading it.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Cody update

From Cody's Aunt Denise:

Hello friends,

I want to give you a brief update on Cody's recovery and ask for your continued prayers. Our family was all together for Christmas, spending Christmas Eve at Cody's side at the hospital.

He was taken out of Intensive Care the week before Christmas and is now on the Rehab floor of the hospital. He seems to be doing well medically, and has gained back 4 of the 54 pounds that he had lost. He has no life support, only a humidifier attached to his tracheotomy to get some moisture into his lungs. He has Physical Therapy, Speech Therapy and Occupational Therapy every day. They have him sitting up in a chair several hours a day, with someone at his side. His progress in these areas is very slow. He still responds only to commands to lift a finger, open his mouth, or raise an eyebrow, but we remain hopeful and are praying to Mary and her Son, St. Jude, Pope John Paul ll for continued progress and for Cody's recovery. We also pray for his parents and siblings who are all struggling so much during this time.

God Bless you all and thank you for your continued prayers.

I thank you, too.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Monday, January 22: a day of prayer and penance

In all the dioceses of the United States of America, January 22 shall be observed as a particular day of penance for violations to the dignity of the human person committed through acts of abortion, and of prayer for the full restoration of the legal guarantee of the right to life. The Mass “For Peace and Justice” (no. 22 of the “Masses for Various Needs”) should be celebrated with violet vestments as an appropriate liturgical observance for this day.

General Instruction of the Roman Missal, no. 373

If at all possible, please do plan to attend Mass this Monday. Thanks!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

How to make a Holy Hour

If you're not used to spending an hour or so a week before the Blessed Sacrament, and are hesitant somewhat in doing so, please do not beat yourself up. You are human, and we humans often have a hard time spending two minutes in contemplation, never mind an hour!

Father John P. Grigus, OFM, of the Pope John Paul II Eucharistic Adoration Association (Archdiocese of Chicago) has some simple -- yet simply great -- suggestions for you. The first is: divide the hour into 15 minute periods.

Read the rest...it's terrific.

(And while you're there, you might want to explore the site, starting by clicking on "home.")

Sunday, January 14, 2007

"There was a wedding at Cana in Galilee"...what did you hear?

A reader writes:

A truly devoted Catholic and friend of mine asked me on Wednesday how often do we hear a priest talk about sin in his homily? I replied hardly at all. The conversation then went on to-- I wonder how often the priest talks about abortion, birth control etc. and we thought about today's gospel and the wedding feast of Cana and if we would hear anything about marriage? (it would be a perfect time to bring it up don't you think?) Well, our priest didn't say a word about marriage but talked about stewardship and money. So, I am wondering if there are any priests out there who did talk at all about the beauty of the sacramental vocation of marriage? Maybe you could ask your blog readers to reply. I am now curious.

Go for it. What did you hear?

(Just to weigh in early, I heard two rather good sermons on today's Gospel. One was devoted to Mary's faith, and how we ought to bring our concerns to Jesus and then trust in Him to address them in His own time. Another focused on the divinity of Jesus. In both Masses, the intercessions included a prayer for married couples. Neither sermon addressed marriage...or sin.)

Saturday, January 13, 2007

No Crucifix around the neck, but on the lapel is fine and I'm confused

From Britain's Telegraph:

A devout Catholic schoolgirl has been banned from wearing a crucifix in class on health and safety grounds. Samantha Devine, a 13-year-old pupil at the Robert Napier School in Gillingham, Kent, yesterday vowed to keep wearing the tiny cross, even if it meant being expelled.

Same story, from This is London:

A Catholic schoolgirl was asked not to wear a crucifix on a chain because it breached health and safety rules, her father said today.

Samantha Devine, 13, was told to remove the crucifix and chain to comply with school rules.

And from BBC News:

Samantha argued: "Everyone says they believe in God by going to church, but I believe in him in my own way.

"If I've got a problem, I always get it [the crucifix] and talk to it, and I feel that helps me."

Can anybody makes sense out of these stories? I've read 'em all and I'm still up in the air.


Thursday, January 11, 2007

Carter, Clinton, and Baptist Chic

ATLANTA (BP)--Former Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton have proposed the establishment of a broadly inclusive alternative Baptist movement to counter what they called a negative image of Baptists and to address poverty, the environment and global conflicts.

Broadly inclusive?

About 80 leaders of 40 moderate Baptist organizations claiming to represent 20 million Baptists in the United States, Canada and Mexico met at the Carter Center for the announcement. Leaders from the Southern Baptist Convention were not invited to attend. [emphasis mine]

And, incidentally:

The 2008 confabulation Clinton and Carter propose will coincide with a U.S. presidential election year. Clinton's wife, U.S. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), is a possible candidate and has hired a consultant to advise her on religion. Democrats have made winning over "faith voters" a major election strategy.

Thanks to Jay Anderson and Jeff Miller for the source.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Why can't they be like we were, perfect in every way?

Gee. It seems that, wherever I turn, good, decent people aren't as optimistic as they could be. No doubt there are good reasons for this, but still...

I mean, I keep hearing about how the world is heading for all sorts of unspeakable evils, that the world is, in fact, an unspeakable evil, and that we all might as well, pretty much, throw in the towel because, as everyone knows, The End is Near.

It was my good friend Michelle's comment, in an earlier blog...

Do you ever wonder how things got to be this bad - in our lifetime too.

...that got me thinking. And singing!

I love Cole Porter. From "Anything Goes" (circa 1934)

In olden days a glimpse of stockings,
Was looked on as something shocking, now Heaven knows...anything goes!

Good authors too who once knew better words,
Now only use four-letter words in their prose...anything goes!

The world has gone mad today,
And good's bad today,
And black's white today,
And day's night today,
And most guys today,
That women prize today,
Are just silly gigolos...

"Bye, Bye Birdie" (1963) ran on TV recently. One song's lyrics:

I don't know what's wrong with these kids today!
Who can understand anything they say?
They're disobedient, disrespectful oafs!
Noisy, crazy, dirty, lazy, loafers!
(And while we're on the subject:)
You can talk and talk till your face is blue!
But they still just do what they want to do!
Why can't they be like we were,
Perfect in every way?
Oh, what's the matter with kids today?

"Kelly. What the bleep's the matter with you today???"

Oh, I don't know. Call me a simplistic optimistic. (Hey, that sounds like the start of another hit song...Hollywood, I'm standing by my phone!)

No but seriously, folks...there are some wonderful, terrific, amazing things in this admittedly mad, mad world to rejoice in!

Today, I chatted with a leukemia patient.

Obviously in physical pain, he nevertheless smiled with glee, and do you know why? Because Jesus was born, adored by the Magi, and everybody around heard The Father's voice as He was baptized in the river Jordan by His cousin!

Yesterday after Mass...

I saw a kid -- oh, maybe 15 or so -- walk slowly over to the tabernacle, sink to his knees, and adore this same Jesus for so long I left before he got back to his feet.

Yeah, in many ways, the world's a mess.

But you don't have to be and I don't either. There is not one thing that can stop us from revelling in optimism. Jesus Christ deigned -- and with love! -- to be born a man, to establish His Church, to suffer death, to conquer death...all for you and for me.

This is nothing less than delightful!

It's delicious, it's delectable, it's delirious, it's dilemma, it's de-limit, it's de-luxe, it's de-lovely!

So cheer up. The Lord is with us and it just doesn't get any better than that.

Besides, the world isn't evil. God made it, and evil? Evil He doesn't deal in.

"But Kelly, we do deal in evil!"

True enough. But God made us, too. So, we're good. And if we're good, and we are, we can vanquish evil.

It's worth a try.


What did you see today that reflected reason for hope? Tell!

And may God continue to bless you!

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Why embryonic stem cells when THEY DON'T WORK???

Embryonic stem cells don't work. Period. (Although using them is a real effective way to end human life.)

Adult and cord blood stem cells have had great success. (And you don't have to kill anybody to use them.)

Yet, insanely, in Peter's Voice columnist John Mallon's words, "the Culture of Death forges on anyway promoting and demanding embryonic stem-cell research and trying to suppress adult and cord blood research for their own bizarre reasons."

His interview with Richard Doerflinger, the U.S. Bishops' bioethics spokesman, is worth the read.

And praying about.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

The "improbable" Deval Patrick

In his inauguration speech today, Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick used the term "improbable" three times. Twice to describe his "journey," and once to describe America's "journey."

So far, I find our newest governor...improbable.

Two days ago, he urged the Massachusetts state legislature to ignore the state's Constitution (in his words today, "the oldest, and one of the most explicit about individual freedoms") by adjourning the Constitutional Convention without taking a vote on defining marriage.

No, wait, that's not quite accurate.

Mr. Patrick urged the lawmakers to quit before taking a vote on whether or not the people of the state
should be allowed to vote on a definition of marriage. This, after the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts -- which, by the way, presumed to re-define Massachusetts "marriage" a few years ago -- ruled that the lawmakers should vote on the proposed ballot question, for heaven's sake, one way or another.

"Uh...I was out of town..."

Mr. Patrick claims he was "out of touch" with the state days prior to taking office, having celebrated his 50th birthday in South Africa, and thereby "missed" hearing about the Court's ruling.
Weird, given that he arrived home on Monday, and made his little speech to the lawmakers on Tuesday. How long does it take to "get in touch," guv?

Ladies and gents, I present to you the newest governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts...and ask you to ponder his first words as governor:

"Massachusetts invented America."

Highly improbable. Governor.

Subway track rescue

Talk about a Good Samaritan! Wow!

Wesley Autrey, 50, was waiting on the No.1 train platform at 137th Street and Broadway with his two young daughters at about 12:45 p.m. when he spotted 18-year-old Cameron Hollowpeter collapse and fall onto the tracks. Autrey then leapt onto the tracks to get Hollowpeter to higher ground, but noticed a downtown train rapidly approaching.


Tuesday, January 02, 2007

An Epiphany gift for you!

Want to give someone something wonderful this Epiphany Sunday? Use the "email Kelly" button on the left (please don't change the subject line) and I'll send you a printable Epiphany card in .PDF format.

Graced with a passage taken from an Epiphany sermon by Saint Peter Chrysologus and designed by my good friend Alden Thatcher, this is a greeting I have joyously sent to friends and relatives for the past three years, including this one.

All you need to do is open the file with Acrobat Reader, print as many copies as you like (it's in color), fold it and present it to your loved ones.

It's just a little something I'd like to share with you...you've been so good to me.


Mass Gov-to-be urges legislature to ignore constitution

The Massachusetts Constitution upholds citizen initiative petitions.

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has ruled (quite unnecessarily in my view, but there you are) that the state legislature is supposed to adhere to the Constitution.


And yet, Governor-elect Deval Patrick actually urged state lawmakers to ignore the Constitution!

Governor-elect Deval Patrick urged lawmakers to adjourn the convention without taking a vote, saying it would be "irresponsible and wrong" to continue the debate over same-sex marriage.

Deval was "disappointed" that the legislature -- after two other failures to do so, mind you -- decided to act lawfully.

In the continuing drama of the ridiculous, there's a scintilla of a possibility that Massachusetts voters will be able to confirm the true definition of the word "marriage."

Source: CBS4Boston