Thursday, January 31, 2013


Decide that today is the day. Say it: “This is going to be my day!”
Posted: 31 Jan 2013 03:54 AM PST
People and circumstances will occasionally break you down.  But if you keep your mind focused, your heart open to possibility, and continue to put one foot in front of the other, you will be able to quickly recover the pieces, rebuild, and come back much stronger than you ever would have been otherwise.
Here are a few happy thoughts to ponder on those days when the whole world seems like it’s crashing down around you.
  1. Down days are completely normal, and not something you should feel guilty about having.  Happiness is never constant.  Surrendering to your sadness, or whatever negative emotion is trying to come to the surface, does not make you a bad person.  But remember, if you aren’t sincerely thankful for every smile, don’t be totally shocked by every tear.  Keep things in perspective.
  2. When you are at your lowest point, you are open to the greatest positive change.  Happiness is not the absence of problems, but the strength to deal with them.  Strength doesn’t come from what you can do; it comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t do.
  3. There is a huge difference between giving up and moving on.  Moving on doesn’t mean giving up, but rather accepting that there are some things that cannot be.  Moving on can mean that you’re making a choice to be happy rather than hurt.  For some folks, good situations last a lifetime, but for many, not knowing when to move on can hold them back forever.
  4. Life rarely turns out exactly the way you want it to, but you still have an opportunity to make it great.  You have to do what you can, with what you have, exactly where you are.  It won’t always be easy, but it will be worth it in the end.  Remember that there is no perfect life, just perfect moments.  And it’s these moments you must cherish; it’s these moments that make the whole journey worthwhile.
  5. Most people ask for happiness on condition, but long-term happiness can only be felt if you don’t set conditions.  Accept life unconditionally. Realize that life balances itself between the ideal and the disappointing.  And the disappointments are just life’s way of saying, “I’ve got something better for you right around the corner.”  So be patient, live life, accept what is, and have a little faith.
  6. Too often, we carry around things from our past that hurt us – regrets, shame, anger, pain, etc.  Don’t let these negative points from the past rob your present happiness.  You had to live though these things in the past, and although unfortunate, they can’t be changed.  But if the only place they live today is in your mind, then let go, move on, and be happy.  
  7. You can choose to view things differently.  Pick one part of your life that you are unhappy with and look at it from a different point of view.  See the rain as nourishment for future growth.  Consider being alone for awhile to create the solitude you need to hear your inner voice.  Think of your lack of funds as an opportunity to experience the simple things in life.  Right now, you can choose to allow the light to shine in your life.  It is a choice.  Why not allow it?
  8. Once you embrace unpleasant news, not as a negative but as evidence of a need for positive change, you’re learning from it and growing.  Whatever life throws at you, even if it hurts, be strong and fight through it.  Remember, strong walls shake but never collapse.  Life always offers you another chance – it’s called tomorrow.
  9. When your flaws are stitched together with good intentions, your flaws make you beautiful.  It’s better to be true to yourself and risk being ridiculed by others, than to be false, and miss out on the beauty of being YOU.  Never be bullied into silence.  Never let someone else tell you who you are.  Accept no one’s definition of your life, except your own.
  10. You have the ability to heal yourself.  Just like lava flowing slowly out of a volcano, you must create a healthy outlet for your pain and anger.   It’s important after you’ve been hurt to take some time to think about your pain, and address it calmly and consciously, so you can thwart the possibility of more pain brewing from your own negativity.
  11. There’s a lot of life left to be lived.  The real tragedy in life is not death, but the passion we let die inside of us while we still live.  Remember, troubles from the past cannot define you, destroy you, or defeat you all by themselves.  As long as you keep pushing forward, they can only strengthen you.  
  12. You are a work in progress; which means you get there a little at a time, not all at once.  Today is a brand new day – a fresh start.  Replace negativity with positivity.  Think happy thoughts.  Exercise.  Drink lots of water.  Fill your body with fuel.  Healthy is happy.  Inspire yourself.  Create.  Laugh.  Play.  Love.  Learn.  Give someone a compliment.  Perform a random act of kindness.  Take a chance on an idea you believe in.  You have the opportunity to do these things every single day – to make the necessary changes and slowly become the person you want to be.  You just have to decide to do it.  Decide that today is the day.  Say it: “This is going to be my day!”


    ~By Marc and Angel Hack Life.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Quote of th Day

Quote of the day!
"The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled.  Public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed, lest Rome become bankrupt." 

    - Cicero, 55 BC 


Posted: 30 Jan 2013 03:47 AM PST
There has been a proliferation of books on how to think positive and be happy so that you can become successful and fulfilled. More often than not our brains prefer to choose negative thoughts. Poet John Milton once said, “The mind is its own place, and in itself, can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.”

He certainly knew what he was talking about!

On any given day, we average about 60,000 thoughts. Many of them are focused on what’s wrong or what could go wrong. This made a lot of sense thousands of years ago when there was a huge possibility that our village could be obliterated by our enemies or we might be attacked by a behemoth while taking a morning walk. Unfortunately the brain has taken its time catching up with modern day society.

We are still struggling to rid ourselves of our fears, which often result from negative thoughts.

Researchers have proven that our brain patterns are defined in part by how we think. Optimists take credit for their successes and see bad events as flukes. Pessimists, on the other hand, blame themselves for anything that happens and often discount success.

Psychologist Dr. Martin Seligman says that pessimists use the three P’s to explain themselves:
Personalization: “It always happens to me!”
Pervasiveness: “It happens to me every day in every way!”
Permanence: “It will never end!”

This thinking guarantees a life of hopelessness and suffering. It also contributes to a sense of inner worthlessness and a lack of self-control. The more we think we are a certain way, the more we become that way.

Learning to change our inner dialogue can be very difficult for those whose biology predisposes them to depression and or anxiety. So learning to parrot positive statements may prove to be an act of futility.
For those of us who have simply become habituated to thinking that the universe is not a friendly place, I suggest spending some time every day thinking about what you feel good about. There is always something we can extrapolate from our day to day that can help to buffer our fears.  If you can engage in this practice you will find yourself more able to handle difficult situations and there’s a good possibility you may even live longer.


~ By Loretta Laroche


This Day's Thought

I need Christ, not something that resembles Him.
C. S. Lewis
This Day's Verse
I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
Psalm 34:4
The King James Version
This Day's Smile
Have you noticed, it's difficult, if not impossible, to save money when your neighbors keep buying things you can't afford?


Tuesday, January 29, 2013



We tried so hard to make things better for our kids that we made them worse.  For my grandchildren, I'd like better.  I'd really like for them to know about hand-me-down clothes and homemade ice cream and leftover meat loaf sandwiches.  I really would.

I hope you learn humility by being humiliated, and that you learn honesty by being cheated.  I hope you learn to make your own bed and mow the lawn and wash the car.  And I really hope nobody gives you a brand-new car when you are sixteen.

It will be good if at least one time you can see puppies born and your old dog put to sleep.  I hope you get a black eye fighting for something you believe in.  I hope you have to share a bedroom with your younger brother.  And it's all right if you have to draw a line down the middle of the room, but when he wants to crawl under the covers with you because he's scared, I hope you let him.

When you want to see a movie and your little brother wants to tag along, I hope you'll let him.  I hope you have to walk uphill to school with your friends and that you live in a town where you can do it safely.  On rainy days when you have to catch a ride, I hope you don't ask your driver to drop you two blocks away so you won't be seen riding with someone as uncool as your mom.

If you want a slingshot, I hope your dad teaches you how to make one instead of buying one.  I hope you learn to dig in the dirt and read books.

When you learn to use computers, I hope you also learn to add and subtract in your head.  I hope you get teased by your friends when you have your first crush on a girl, and when you talk back to your mother that you learn what ivory soap tastes like.
May you skin your knee climbing a mountain, burn you hand on a stove and stick your tongue on a frozen flagpole.  I don't care if you try a beer once, but I hope you don't like it.  And if a friend offers you dope or a joint, I hope you realize he is not your friend.

I sure hope you make time to sit on a porch with your Grandpa and go fishing with your Uncle.  May you feel sorrow at a funeral and joy during the holidays.  I hope your mother punishes you when you throw a baseball through your neighbor's window and that she hugs you and kisses you at Christmas time when you give her a plaster mold of your hand.

These things I wish for you--tough times and disappointment, hard work and happiness.  To me, it's the only way to appreciate life.


What Alabama’s Politics Could Teach the Rest of the Country.

When we first announced to friends and family our decision to move from Las Vegas to rural Alabama, you would have thought we said we were all growing bushy beards to live as hermits in a cave, way over in Mars, with Forrest Gump as our cult leader.  But time has proven that:  in the intensifying legal battle over the issues of life, marriage and religious freedom, the state of Alabama is on the right track.
First, in 2006, there came the approved amendment to the State Constitution, the Alabama Sanctity of Marriage Act, that made it unconstitutional to recognize or perform same-sex marriage. No Sodom and Gomorra here.

Then, in 2012, there was the re-election of Judge Roy Moore as the Supreme Court Chief Justice. Moore being the famous judge who refused to remove the Ten Commandments from the courthouse more than a decade ago. He campaigned with the statement: “The true issue is whether we can acknowledge the sovereignty of almighty God over the affairs of our state and our law. That I will not back down from. I will always acknowledge the sovereignty of God and I think we must.” Justice Moore’s re-election signified a people’s desire to entrust their rights in the hands of a religious Christian.  No separation of Judeo-Christian morality from the state here, either.

During the same elections, the state of Alabama approved another amendment to its State Constitution that no employer shall be mandated to participate in the Federal Health Program (which of course included funding for abortion, contraception and sterilization.) The message was: no federal overreaching interference welcome here.

This January saw the jubilant news that the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that the definition of ‘child’ includes the unborn.  The Supreme Court stated that: “The decision of this Court today is in keeping with the widespread legal recognition that unborn children are persons with rights that should be protected by law.” Furthermore, it affirmed that: “the decision in the present cases is consistent with the Declaration of Rights in the Alabama Constitution, which states that ‘all men are equally free and independent; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

As for euthanasia, the common law provisions still stand:  it is considered a Class A felony murder for a person to cause the death of another person with intent to cause the death of such a person.  Furthermore, physician assisted suicide is not condoned or authorized.  In short, we don’t want to kill y’all over here.

Way to go, Alabama!  If only you were a political trendsetter for the rest of the country.
I’m well aware that it is the same state the threatens immigration practice, cracked-down on the rights and status of my fellow immigrants and authorized it’s police to ask for my papers if they catch me violating driving laws just because I have brown skin and black hair.   As I am very much cognizant of the Catholic Church’s stand on immigration to oppose enforcement-only policies and support comprehensive immigration reform, citing under the Catechism 2241 that the more prosperous nations to the extent they are able, are obliged to welcome the foreigner in search of security and livelihood which is not available in his country of origin.

Before the ethnic minority population denounces me a persona non grata, put down those pitchforks and let me explain why I cheer on this conservatively religious southern state.  It is not just the numbers game that Alabama’s voters got 4 out of 5 out of the Church’s teachings correct.  Nor does it have anything to do with the fact that the University of Alabama’s Catholic football coach Nick Saban trumped Notre Dame at college football.  It is simply that, in the hierarchy of rights, Alabama’s voters and leaders have chosen the primary, non-negotiable issue of life over privacy, over health, over women’s rights, over livelihood, over the culture of death.

Alabama is trying to build the kind of world I want my children to be part of:  where life is the first inalienable, God-given right from conception to natural death; marriage is a sacrament and the basic foundation of a family and society; religious freedom is practiced by the Church; God’s laws are supreme and justice is grounded on truth and morality.

Alabama isn’t perfect (nowhere in the world is), but this is a place I can envision my children’s faith flourishing so that they can be prepared for their final home in eternity. To that end, even my own temporal self-interest, convenience, and strong opinion on immigration must be sacrificed for the good of their souls.

I continue to work with my parish for justice for individual immigrants and pray for just immigration laws, but in the long run, I choose life. More specifically, I choose the lives, faith and future of my children, both born and yet to be born.7

Monday, January 28, 2013


Holy Love

January 27, 2013

I (Maureen) see a Great Flame which I have come to know as the Heart of God the Father.  He says:  "I have come to help the world to better understand the meaning of My Title - 'Eternal Now'."

"In the world, you have the concepts of time and space.  You experience the past in your memory - the present in the present moment - and you anticipate the future as time passes by moment by moment."

"But I am the Eternal Now.  In Me there is no past or future - only now, which lasts forever.  Therefore, the world is being created now by My Hand.  My Son is being born now in the stable.  His Public Ministry is taking place now, as is His Crucifixion.  I am celebrating His Resurrection now, and welcoming Him as He ascends to Me in Victory now."

"In the world, every event is just now taking place in My Heart - the wars, persecutions, the decision of Roe v. Wade.  But also I am experiencing My Son's Second Coming - His Triumph over the Antichrist and His Victorious Reign."

"Because there is no time in My Realm, I am able to experience joy and sorrow all at once to the fullest.  These things are difficult for you to comprehend, but as you meditate on My Words to you today, you will be given more and more understanding."

Saturday, January 26, 2013




January 25, 2013 Message to Marija

"Dear children! Also today I call you to prayer. May your prayer be as strong as a living stone, until with your lives you become witnesses. Witness the beauty of your faith. I am with you and intercede before my Son for each of you. Thank you for having responded to my call."

Friday, January 25, 2013


Posted: 25 Jan 2013 04:06 AM PST
It‘s not where we stand but in what direction we are moving.
Sometimes we find ourselves running in place, struggling to get ahead simply because we forget to address some of the simple truths that govern our potential to make progress.  So here’s a quick reminder:
  1. The acquisition of knowledge doesn’t mean you’re growing.  Growing happens when what you know changes how you live. [It has!]
  2. You can’t have good ideas unless you’re willing to generate a lot of bad ones. [Know this well!]
  3. A good idea without action is worth nothing. [speaks for itself]
  4. Change is often resisted when it is needed the most. [It's a common human failing.]
  5. Discipline is choosing what you want most over what you want right now.  [Who likes waiting?]
  6. People seldom do things to the best of their ability.  They do things to the best of their willingness. [No, not ME!]
  7. You can’t change other people; you can only offer guidance, and lead by example. [And if they can't or do not change, either you accept them for who they are, and if you can't, you move on.]
  8. Right now, there’s a lot you don’t know.  And if you never challenge your own beliefs, the list will never shrink. [Absolutely, and I can attest you will find it very stimulating.]
  9. If you’re talking to someone you don’t know well, you may be talking to someone who knows way more about the topic of conversation than you do. [Hm, as in my best friend!]
  10. The most common and harmful addiction in the world is the draw of comfort. [Ref #7 - moving from your comfort zone - change - is difficult, but often produces positive things for your life,]
  11. Growth begins at the end of your comfort zone.  Stepping outside of your comfort zone will put things into perspective from an angle you can’t grasp now. [See #10 - what I was trying to say.]
  12. When you spend time worrying, you’re simply using your imagination to create things you don’t want. [My mother taught me, "If you can't change it, why worry about it?]
  13. It’s usually only as good or bad as you think it is.  Most of what we see is only what we think about what we see. [Objectivity! Maybe that's why I am not a Judge in a courtroom,]
  14. Most of the bad things you worry about will never happen.  Most of the bad things that do happen will have never crossed your worried mind. [Again, difficult to be objective about oneself; takes DISCIPLINE and CONFIDENCE.]
  15. Some circumstances are uncontrollable, but we can always decide how we react to those circumstances. [EXACTLY!]
  16. Those who complain the most, accomplish the least. [Truism!]
  17. Whenever somebody discredits you, and tells you that you can’t do something, keep in mind that they are speaking from within the boundaries of their own limitations. [Follow YOUR heart ♥]
  18. Every problem you have in your life right now is your responsibility, regardless of who initially caused it. [Taking responsibility also means resolution. Isn't that a good thing?]
  19. It’s not so much about finding opportunities as it is about creating them. [Life was meant to be good and happy for everyone.  Life is what YOU make of it! It's nobody's responsibility except yours! GO FOR IT!]


anthony and paul Desert FathersQuestion: Dear Dan, I just read your post on spiritual friendship. I will be going for spiritual direction soon.  I have some concerns. From what I’ve been reading, and what I have been feeling (fear, anxiety, restlessness, doubt if I should go ahead), spiritual direction is a very intensely personal thing I have to go through with a stranger (a priest alright)  if I want to improve my spiritual life, but then, I cannot be personal but treat this as a purely professional transaction the way we can’t be personal with our doctor who would probably have seen most of our physical selves. Am I right in thinking this?

Being human, I would find it hard not to be at least a little personal –friendly, that is–to someone who would be helping me a great deal in the most important part of my existence on earth. Other than shaking hands and communicating regarding our SD meetings, what would be considered overstepping my boundaries in the relationship with my spiritual director? We give gifts of appreciation to friends; would it be offensive to do the same with my SD? If my SD can ask questions about my personal life (family, etc) outside SD, I expect not to be able to do the same, am I right? I just want to be respectful. It’s very hard to find a good SD and I wouldn’t want to offend one I have right now. I am married woman by the way.

My second concern is, do I talk about previous sins that I have already confessed, in our forthcoming SD? I will be going for SD within a couple of months or so.

A: Dear Friend, you are asking good questions. I recommend you read my book Navigating the Interior Life – Spiritual Direction and the Journey to God. All the proceeds from those books distributed through our site go to help those who can’t afford to purchase faithful spiritual literature. In it, I outline and answer all of the questions you ask here along with many others. In the meantime, here are a few quick answers to your questions (we also have an endless number of posts on these topics under the Spiritual Direction category):

Question: Should I give gifts to my spiritual director?
Answer: Absolutely as you are led by the Holy Spirit and by charity in appreciation for their assistance.

Question: Am I right in thinking I can’t be personal?
Answer: No. You can and should be personal. The post on spiritual friendship you read was meant to make a distinction between spiritual friendship (low accountability) and spiritual direction (high accountability among other key distinctions). The post was not meant to discourage a personal connection with a spiritual director. That said, a good director will generally keep a healthy distance in order to allow for objectivity and appropriate boundaries. A good directee will avoid pushing these boundaries.

Question: What is “overstepping my boundaries” with my director?
Answer: To cover the obvious first, any expression of intimacy, emotional or physical, that should be reserved for your spouse alone (or would-be spouse), would be an overstepping of healthy boundaries. As well, we need to respect the fact that our director needs to maintain an objectivity that can rarely be achieved when we are overly friendly in the relationship.

Question: Should I ask my director about their family life?
Answer: No. Good spiritual directors are generally extremely busy. You should be ready to sit down as soon as you meet and pray, and then begin to seek direction about your progress in prayer and virtue.

Question: Should I talk about previous sins already confessed?
Answer: It depends. If you are struggling with breaking a pattern of sin, this would be an appropriate topic of conversation in spiritual direction. Also, you might need to reveal important instances or patterns of past sins with a director who may not be familiar with the history and state of your soul. Let your director lead you in what you need to reveal.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


It's been said that God first separated the salt water from the fresh, made dry land, planted a garden, made animals and fish... All before making a human. He made and provided what we'd need before we were born. These are best & more powerful when eaten raw. We're such slow learners...

God left us a great clue as to what foods help what part of our body!
God's Pharmacy! Amazing!

A sliced Carrot looks like the human eye. The pupil, iris and radiating lines look just like the human eye... And YES, science now shows carrots greatly enhance blood flow to and function of the eyes.

A Tomato has four chambers and is red. The heart has four chambers and is red. All of the research shows tomatoes are loaded with lycopine and are indeed pure heart and blood food.

Grapes hang in a cluster that has the shape of the heart. Each grape looks like a blood cell and all of the research today shows grapes are also profound heart and blood vitalizing food.

A Walnut looks like a little brain, a left and right hemisphere, upper cerebrums and lower cerebellums. Even the wrinkles or folds on the nut are just like the neo-cortex. We now know walnuts help develop more than three (3) dozen neuron-transmitters for brain function.

Kidney Beans actually heal and help maintain kidney function and yes, they look exactly like the human kidneys.

Celery, Bok Choy, Rhubarb and many more look just like bones. These foods specifically target bone strength. Bones are 23% sodium and these foods are 23% sodium. If you don't have enough sodium in your diet, the body pulls it from the bones, thus making them weak. These foods replenish the skeletal needs of the body.

Avocadoes, Eggplant and Pears target the health and function of the womb and cervix of the female - they look just like these organs. Today's research shows that when a woman eats one avocado a week, it balances hormones, sheds unwanted birth weight, and prevents cervical cancers. And how profound is this? It takes exactly nine (9) months to grow an avocado from blossom to ripened fruit. There are over 14,000 photolytic chemical constituents of nutrition in each one of these foods (modern science has only studied and named about 141 of them).

Figs are full of seeds and hang in twos when they grow. Figs increase the mobility of male sperm and increase the numbers of Sperm as well to overcome male sterility.

Sweet Potatoes look like the pancreas and actually balance the glycemic index of diabetics.

Olives assist the health and function of the ovaries

Oranges , Grapefruits, and other Citrus fruits look just like the mammary glands of the female and actually assist the health of the breasts and the movement of lymph in and out of the breasts.

Onions look like the body's cells. Today's research shows onions help clear waste materials from all of the body cells. They even produce tears which wash the epithelial layers of the eyes. A working companion, Garlic, also helps eliminate waste materials and dangerous free radicals from the body.

Please don't break this even if you only send it to one person. Look at the date when this was started. Thanks. (copy and paste into email to send)


I am not going to be the one who Lets it die. I found it believable ---

This candle was lit on the September 12, 1987

Someone who loves you has helped Keep it alive by sending it to you.
Don't let The Candle of Love, Hope And Friendship die! Pass It On To All
Of Your Friends and Everyone You Love!

I received this today for the 1st time and I hope it comes back someday again.


Maybe Beyonce was lip-syncing the National Anthem. And ...... what's your point?  Did you see the look on our veep sitting behind her? I'm convinced Jeff Dunham's "Old Man" ventriloquist dummy is designed with Biden in mind! 

Arnold Schwarzenegger went from actor to Governor back to actor, and fathered an illegitimate child with the hired help.  None of my business and not a priority to me,

Today's Miracle, Thanks be to God - a baby girl born with her heart outside her body was finally able to go home. A body brace with a hole where you can see her heart beating was made for her safety while she continues to heal.  The doctor stretched some of her skin over the heart without disturbing the location of the heart, successfully.  Sweet Jesus, and there are women who have sex freely and without a thought to all the free contraception available at every City's Health Department.  Better yet, practice contraception of abstaining!  Then they abort in places like Planned Parenthood (boy, what a play on words!) "just cause I didn't want a baby and I didn't expect to get pregnant".  Mothers, don't let your daughters grow up to be aborters!  EDUCATION EDUCATION EDUCATION!

About Hilary Clinton. Can you imagine a movie about her role, or the lack thereof, in the massacre at the American Embassy in Libya?  Taking bets on Hollywood taking this on this project!  Hilary will probably sell "her story", because her career is most assuredly over.  But then again, she is a Democrat and they seem to have nine lives.  The most disgusting thing she said was "whether it was [describes two possible scenarios], four people are dead.  What does it matter now? What we have to do is figure out what went wrong and make sure it doesn't happen again."  Dear Hilary, we know what went wrong.  You're in extreme denial, or you're just plain lying!

Have you seen any of the pictures of the freeze in Chicago?  That's a truck on the left in the photograph.  I cannot imagine living there under these conditions. Where I live, a slight freeze shuts down everything for miles, mostly due to trees falling on power lines.

I can't believe that over 100 people have been standing in line in Troy, Alabama, waiting for the Chick-Fil-A Grand Opening to get a ticket for 1 free meal a week for a year.  Have you ever taken the grilled chicken off the bun and taken a big bite?  It's like chewing cardboard, and it tastes like it, too. I just don't get all the hype over this fast-food "restaurant".  All you get is chicken on a bun.  Everything else is charged extra!  And waffle fries?  GREASE HEART ATTACK!

Television and Film: 5-6 minutes of show - Commercial Commercial Commercial Commercial Commercial (that's 5); 5-6 show - Commercial Commercial Commercial Commercial Commercial.  Can you figure out how actors are making those exorbitant salaries?  Commercials pay for time, which pays for the show and the actors!  In our area, it is now $10 per adult for a movie at the theater, then we spend $30 for a bucket of popcorn and two large drinks - but we can get free refills! We can't even eat a large bucket of popcorn, and I never finish a large drink.

NASCAR - I'm bereft! The Bud Shootout is now going to be called The Sprint Cup Limited.  What??  What is "limited" .... Geez, The Bud Shootout is like the Kentucky Derby, the cars coming out of the gate, first race beginning Speed Weeks, the beginning of the NASCAR season, the best of the best racing! 

Scientology: When will the shell of the big egg finally crack and break open, revealing all goop and no yoke?

Twitter:  Hey, I know everybody wants to get in on the Anti-Abortion march news, but please, if you see others posting, please use your discretion and not fill up the page with repetitious reports and links to articles that have already been mentioned once, twice, three times, etc.

My Causes:  My heart belongs to Jesus and the Mother Catholic Church.  My greatest concern begins with the babies and the children (abortion and abuse, respectively), child prostitution and pornography.  We must save the children at all costs.  Take the $50 you might spend on an evening at the movies and donate it to "Her Choice" or some other anti-abortion organization (that just happens to be the one run by members of the Catholic faith in our city).  Also, think of those who are so unfortunate that they have no home.  Go downtown one night and take some food to the homeless who are living underneath the interstate that goes through your city.  Take clothing and blankets in winter especially.  You'll find that they are very grateful for your generosity.  Lastly, I have a very soft spot in my hear for the elderly.  For example, if you are driving behind someone; they're going slow, and they're in the fast lane, DON'T honk and honk at them - go around and take a look.  Nine times out of ten, it is an elderly person doing their best to get where they need to go.  Most elderly have nobody to drive them to the doctor.  Honking and cursing at them, well, it's un-Godly, and it unnerves them.  You may cause them to have an accident, or worse.  Take a Saturday or Sunday and take fresh cut flowers from your grocer (their fairly inexpensive) to a nursing home and visit some of the confined.  If you talk to the nurses beforehand, they will usually let you visit freely.  A lot of elderly are put away by their families and forgotten.  In reality, you know that if you are going to a nursing home, you are going there to die and the world as you knew it is gone.  It breaks my heart.  I am a trained Minister to the Sick and Infirmed; and, for those elderly who are Catholic, it is a joy to talk with them, show concern for them, read scripture, pray and present the Eucharist to them.

I'm putting my soap box back in its storage place, and since I awoke at 1:00 a.m. and never went back to sleep, I think I'll go back to bed for a few hours.

Go in peace, to love and serve the Lord.  Thanks be to God †


Wednesday, January 23, 2013


With the celebration of 507 years of the Swiss Guard at the Vatican on January 22, 1506, I have pulled together a brief history (including a link to the complete history on Wikepedia) and video. I have always found their colorful uniforms, perfect form and dedication to their cause fascinating, thus I have researched a little deeper for my own sake.  I invite you to enjoy this colorful history as well.  Blessings all †††


Pontifical Swiss Guard
“Today in particular, we celebrate the establishment of the Pontifical Swiss Guard, which took place on January 22, 1506.” 

To honor this anniversary, the Swiss Guard celebrated with a Mass, led by the Pope's master of ceremonies. There was also a military parade, that mirrored the very moment when the first guards made their way to the Vatican. 

~Rome Reports News Agency - continue reading

Swiss Guards
are the Swiss soldiers who have served as bodyguards, ceremonial guards, and palace guards at foreign European courts since the late 15th century. Apart from household and guard units, regular Swiss mercenary regiments have served as line troops in various armies; notably those of France, Spain and Naples up to the 19th century (see Swiss Mercenaries). In contemporary usage, the name Swiss Guards generally refers to the Pontifical Swiss Guard of Holy See.

Various units of Swiss Guards existed for hundreds of years. The earliest such unit was the Swiss Hundred Guard (Cent Suisses) at the French court (1497 – 1830). This small force was complemented in 1567 by a Swiss Guards regiment. The Papal Swiss Guard (now located in the Vatican City State), was founded in 1506 and is the only Swiss Guard that still exists. In the 18th and early 19th centuries several other Swiss Guards existed for periods in various European courts.

The use of Swiss soldiers as Royal guards and as the Pontifical guard stems from the reputation of Swiss mercenaries at the time of their formation. Since Switzerland was a poor country, young men often sought their fortunes abroad. Having a reputation for discipline and loyalty, and employing revolutionary battle tactics, they were considered the most powerful troops of the 15th century, until their methods were refined by the Landsknechte in the early 16th century.

Pontifical Swiss Guard

File:Group of swiss guards inside saint peter dome.jpg 
Group of Pontifical Swiss Guard
inside St. Peter's Basilica

The Pontifical Swiss Guard is something of an exception to the Swiss rulings of 1874 and 1927. It is a small force maintained by the Holy See and is responsible for the safety of the Pope, including the security of the Apostolic Palace. It serves as the de facto military of Vatican City.

The history of the Pontifical Swiss Guard has its origins in the 15th century. Pope Sixtus IV (1471–1484) already made a previous alliance with the Swiss Confederation and built barracks in Via Pellegrino after foreseeing the possibility of recruiting Swiss mercenaries. The pact was renewed by Innocent VIII (1484–1492) in order to use them against the Duke of Milan. Alexander VI (1492–1503) later actually used the Swiss mercenaries during their alliance with the King of France. During the time of the Borgias, however, the Italian Wars began in which the Swiss mercenaries were a fixture in the front lines among the warring factions, sometimes for France and sometimes for the Holy See or the Holy Roman Empire. The mercenaries enlisted when they heard King Charles VIII of France was going to raise a war against Naples. Among the participants in the war against Naples was Cardinal Giuliano della Rovere, the future Pope Julius II (1503–1513), who was well acquainted with the Swiss having been Bishop of Lausanne years earlier. The expedition failed in part thanks to new alliances made by Alexander VI against the French. When Cardinal della Rovere became Pope Julius II in 1503, he asked the Swiss Diet to provide him with a constant corps of 200 Swiss mercenaries. In September 1505, the first contingent of 150 soldiers started their march towards Rome, under the command of Kaspar von Silenen, and entered the city on January 22, 1506, today given as the official date of the Guard's foundation. "The Swiss see the sad situation of the Church of God, Mother of Christianity, and realize how grave and dangerous it is that any tyrant, avid for wealth, can assault with impunity, the common Mother of Christianity," declared Huldrych Zwingli, a Swiss Catholic who later became a Protestant reformer. Pope Julius II later granted them the title "Defenders of the Church's freedom".

The force has varied greatly in size over the years and has even been disbanded. Its first, and most significant, hostile engagement was on May 6, 1527 when 147 of the 189 Guards, including their commander, died fighting the troops of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V in the stand of the Swiss Guard during the Sack of Rome in order to allow Clement VII to escape through the Passetto di Borgo, escorted by the other 40 guards. The last stand battlefield is located on the left side of St Peter's Basilica, close to the Campo Santo Teutonico (German Graveyard).

The Pontifical Swiss Guard has served the popes since the 16th century. Ceremonially, they shared duties in the Papal household with the Palatine Guard and Noble Guard, both of which were disbanded in 1970 under Paul VI. Today the Papal Swiss Guard have taken over the ceremonial roles of the former units. At the end of 2005, there were 135 members of the Pontifical Swiss Guard. This number consisted of a Commandant (bearing the rank of oberst or Colonel), a chaplain, three officers, one sergeant major (feldwebel), 30 NCOs, and 99 halberdiers, the rank equivalent to private (so called because of their traditional Halberd).

Recruitment and service

Members of the Pontifical Swiss Guard at the Bronze Door in Vatican City
Recruits to the guards must be Catholic, single males with Swiss citizenship who have completed basic training with the Swiss military and can obtain certificates of good conduct. Recruits must have a professional degree or high school diploma and must be between 19 and 30 years of age and at least 174 cm (5 ft, 8.5 in) tall. In 2009, the Pontifical Swiss Guard commandant, Daniel Anrig, suggested that the Guard might someday be open to recruiting women, but he added that the admission of female recruits remained far in the future.
"Qualified candidates must apply to serve. If accepted, new guards are sworn on May 6 every year in the San Damaso Courtyard (Italian: Cortile di San Damaso) in the Vatican (May 6 is the anniversary of the Sack of Rome). The chaplain of the guard reads aloud the oath in the language of the guard (mostly German).
~ courtesy of Wikepedia - continue reading

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


The Joy of St. Agnes
This is a work of fiction. I hope you enjoy it on the feast day of St. Agnes.
The traveler had his hands buried deep in his pockets, wandering down the streets of Via Nomentana but really not there. The hills surrounding him often whispered of a princess whose remains were to be found nearby, in a very old church where—despite the darkness surrounding her story—angels sang day and night for joy of the King she died for.
He rubbed warmth into his hands, the cold Italian air not bringing them any comfort at all. This strange young man had walked long and far to have a specific view of the church from above. He pulled the hood over his head so that the air wouldn’t get in the way, and peered down at the humbling tribute to a sacrifice many people mourned.
This traveler had seen it all, despite his youth from the outside. No one would suspect him to be an angel himself, disguised carefully so as to not draw attention to himself. He’d seen the death of the princess named Agnes, wept with joy and sorrow all at once when she made her final decision. They wept with joy for their King, elated that He would not lose His love and they would be together forever. He wept with joy for the Father, for in meeting the sword this girl had proved her love for Him. The Spirit in the air moved the heavenly host to tears, and Agnes knew—if you could have seen her face as the sword was about to strike.
The wait, for her, had been more of a torture than the very horrors they inflicted on her. Only thirteen but madly in love with the One Who was true love, she refused marriage over and over, though suitors with heavy pockets and high authority could have given her a life of luxury envied by many.
The angel had watched every torture, up until the final moments of this young girl’s life. The executioner had never seen anyone this young face death so fearlessly. The her brown eyes stared back with unwavering determination; though her body had been broken, with scars and bruises unhealed where movement became painful, her soul was the one thing they could not damage. Much to their frustration, her torturers hadn’t wanted to beat her body down so much as her soul, for the light had been too bright in her.
She stared back at her executioner not in the manner of a person wanting it over with, but the giddiness of a girl about to meet her beloved.
In the crowd from all directions came pleas from onlookers begging the girl Agnes to change her mind while there was still a chance. Right behind the executioner, having first row at the spectacle, waited the rich man who’d been scorned by a young soul determined not to marry. She insisted her heart already belonged to a man who, as far as her suitor was concerned, had been dead for years. The cold young man did all he could, resorting to torture in a brutal attempt to change her mind.
When he couldn’t draw her love as well as her blood, it was finally decided for Agnes to meet the sword. Though unlikely, they had hopes of her changing her mind when she came to face the cold steel that would stop her heart. Instead of fleeing, the young woman waited eagerly. To her, this sword was not the end of her life—it was a key releasing her to freedom.
Procop, the Governor’s son whom she had rejected, watched with conflict and anger in his eyes. The angel knew that, though he put on a show of not caring, her beauty captivated him enough to have given her many chances to accept his proposal. Perhaps at that moment he’d realized what he did wrong, and regretted ever turning her in as a Christian. The wailing of the crowd surrounding them should be enough to put even a rich Governer’s son on end. The angel knew he’d seen fear and helplessness in this young man’s eyes, but he said nothing, did nothing to keep the young woman away from her beloved.
For several dark seconds, the environment was cold and restless. Children wept and even onlooking soldiers were solemn. Rather than be moved by their restlessness, the girl stood completely still, her eyes fixed on the executioner with disappointment. She resented that they were making her wait so long.
“All you had to do was get married,” said the executioner suddenly, in a voice so low that only she would have been able to hear it, and that because she watched him so closely. “You’re sure this is what you want?”
Executioners didn’t normally speak. Nearby Procop listened with interest, but was too pallid to say anything. Perhaps he hoped that talking to someone else would help the girl to change her mind.
The night before he turned her in, she declared she was already betrothed to “the God of the Universe, who would never betray her.” The words had been so bold, that the angry and broken-hearted young man shoved her in anger. As if possessed by a demon, at that moment he no longer cared to court her, but swore that he would have her even if by force.
It hadn’t worked, and now they stood here waiting for this chapter to end.
“Why, I’ve wanted this from the beginning,” said Agnes simply. “You needn’t ask again.”
“You could still worship him, you know,” her suitor suddenly whispered—a change of heart coming at one final, feeble moment. “In secret, of course, but if you’d marry me—”
The young girl smiled and shook her head, and for a moment her eyes flickered to glance up at the cloudy sky. “I won’t betray Him.”
A flash of anger filled the young man’s eyes. He backed away and told the executioner, “Proceed, then.” His tone was one of dark surrender. Whether this King of the Universe truly existed was of no issue to him; she would be dead and this trouble would be over, so both Procop and this Jesus would be happy.
“Taken by who?” blurted the executioner. “You cannot see or touch him.”
“Of course I can see him!” cried Agnes. “He is more splendid than the sun and the stars!”
Those words she’d told Procop so many times. He roared with fury and stormed away, the crowd scuttling to make room for a seething young man who could get them killed for being in his way.
Her life was over not long after that, those innocent brown eyes beaming with anticipation. The angel shivered at the memory—the bride would soon meet her groom.
When she took her last breath, the clouds cleared up. In the dazzling sunlight, you could see women weeping without consolation. Fathers dragged their children away, frightened that they would somehow follow the girl’s example. The angels, though, celebrated: A wedding would soon take place. What was celebrated in Heaven on earth they scorned.
There had been a small crowd of Christians in hiding, though, and even though they didn’t throw a feast for fear of being caught, their hearts celebrated.
The angel turned away from this old and solemn palace, ducking into the shadows where he vanished from view. A new group of tourists was coming in. Maybe they would pick up on the story behind this church and also celebrate what in Heaven was still a call for joy.


Please offer up the Prayer for the Sick today, and every day.



O God, your Son accepted our sufferings to teach us the virtue of patience in human illness. Hear the prayers we offer for our sick brothers and sisters. May all who suffer pain, illness or disease realize that they are chosen to be saints, and know that they are joined to Christ in his suffering for the salvation of the world, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen


The words you say will teach, if you practice what you preach…

Positivity – The things you think about, focus on, and surround yourself with ultimately shape who you become.  Choose to live with gratitude for the love that fills your heart, the peace that rests deep within your spirit, and the voice of hope that whispers, “All things are possible.”  Right now, pause for a moment and repeat after me: “What I think about and thank about, I will bring about in my life.”  

 – Using time, pressure and patience, the universe gradually changes caterpillars into butterflies, sand into pearls, and coal into diamonds.  You’re being worked on too, so hang in there.  Just because something isn’t happening for you right now, doesn’t mean it will never happen.

 – It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you aren’t really living at all – you’re merely existing.  You cannot always wait for the perfect time; sometimes you must dare to jump .  Sometimes all you need is twenty seconds of insane courage – just literally twenty seconds of uncomfortable bravery – and I promise you, something great will come of it.

 – When love is your guiding light, you can break through barriers to be of loving service to the world.  Gaining the courage and confidence to stand up for what you believe in is not always easy, but it’s fully within your reach.  Focus on things that make you the most YOU – that bring out the best of you, that make you better than you were yesterday, and that allow you to shine your light into the space around you.  

 – Tell the truth, or eventually someone will tell it for you.  Living a life of honesty creates peace of mind, and peace of mind is priceless.  Period.  Don’t be dishonest and don’t put up with people who are.

 – Don’t criticize others for their flaws if you are not  willing to confess your own  .  Whatever we refuse to confess about ourselves has a way of rearing its head and making itself known when we least expect it.

 – Sometimes we end up cheating on others and ourselves simply because we pay more attention to what we’re missing, rather than what we have.  Instead of thinking about what you’re missing, think about what you have that everyone else is missing.

 – In every situation you have ever been in, positive or negative, the one common thread is you.  Responsibility means recognizing that regardless of what has happened up to this point in your life, you are capable of making choices to change your situation, or to change the way you think about it.  

 – You can choose to let your past define you and confine you, or you can choose to learn, grow, and leave it behind you.  Just like the seasons, you have the ability to change.  In many ways, you already have.

 – All things are difficult before they are easy.  It’s not about falling, it’s about getting back up.  Success is not a skill,it is a persistent attitude.

 ~By Marc and Angel Hack Life

THIS DAY'S . . .

Dear Ones, I have the flu, hence the lack of regular articles and spiritual verses. Please pray for me, la ringrazio. Dio vi benedica!

This Day's Thought

One of the dangers of having a lot of money is that you may be quite satisfied with the kinds of happiness money can give and so fail to realize your need for God.  If everything seems to come simply by signing checks, you may forget that you are at every moment totally dependent on God.
C. S. Lewis
This Day's Verse
"I have heard your prayer; I have seen your tears.  Behold, I will heal you."
2 Kings 20:5
The English Standard Version