Best guys ever
Today is my last day of work at my current job. Starting on Tuesday, after the holiday, I begin working with the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
Tuesday simply cannot come fast enough. :)
However, today I am doubly grateful for my direct supervisor who has sustained me these last few years. He is a true gem and someone I was always happy to work for. His boss, too. :) My love for and appreciation of both those men are what brought me into work each morning.
Poor thing is shredded
I went on a veil buying binge Wednesday night. It was terrible. And by terrible, I mean amazing. :)
All my Garlands of Grace ones wore themselves out, and due to their verbal misstep a few months back, I've found myself Catholic-friendly vendors with exquisite products.
If you aren't already a fan, may I suggest to you the following for all your veiling needs:
Veils by Lily
A Snood for All Seasons (A Woman's Place)
Vince and Ray
My brother, Ray, bought his very first house! To celebrate, John, Vincent and I took him out for dinner. He chose a new Hibachi place near his house, so Vincent got to experience his first Hibachi!!!
He was super scared of the fire, so he kept covering his eyes, afraid that the chef was going to keep surprising him with huge bursts of flame. He got over it pretty fast, though, and happily ate his rice and noodles.
There was a brief accident before the food came out that had John, Ray and I scrambling to mop up after Vince, but otherwise, it was a great time all around!
Yay family picture!
Vincent also got to experience his first trip to the circus!!!
We have a circus that comes around every year, and John decided that this would be a good time to take Vincent. I agreed, and we were able to enjoy front-and-center tickets to a really amazing show!
I loved the acrobats the most. Vince loved the man running around in a giant hamster ball. John loved the motorbikes riding around in a steel cage.
Now that Vincent is starting to be interested in video games, John (an avid retro gamer) has been introducing him to games like Mega Man, Sonic and Zelda.
On his own, however, he's been playing another older game for nostalgia. It's called Chrono Trigger and it's actually his favorite game from when he was a child.
Anyway, one of the character's names is "Lucca." I caught my breath again when I saw that name randomly pop up as the character introduced itself. Just thought that was interesting, especially because the night before, I had had a dream in which I gave birth to a little boy. I couldn't decide if I should call him Luca or Nathan, but ended up introducing him to my brother as "Luca Nathaniel."
I've had Luca on the brain!
I got to spend an hour and a half at Adoration the other day. There is a beautiful adoration chapel near my home that has a very unique monstrance / tabernacle. The laity is encouraged to approach the Blessed Sacrament that is enclosed within the tabernacle and unhinge the doors so as to "open" the monstrance in order to view the Host.
I wasn't sure if I could approach the monstrance / tabernacle combo, because I felt as part of the laity I was not supposed to touch the sacred vessel. I asked Father Z from WDTPRS about it, and he was kind enough to dedicate an entry to answering me. That can be found here.
Anyway, considering I'm not a EMHC, I won't touch the door. So when I went to adoration and saw that the door was closed, I simply knelt before it and prayed without approaching. Christ is present regardless of if I can see Him or not.
A few minutes later, a woman walked in for adoration and opened the monstrance. I could feel her laughing at me... as if I didn't know I was supposed to open the door. She stayed for about five or ten minutes, but when she left, she said "Please make sure you close the door."
I silently nodded. I was thinking "Okay, Lord, you know I don't want to touch Your door because I don't think I'm supposed to. If you don't want me touching it either, just send someone else to do it for me."
Don't ya know about 10 minutes later, someone else came for adoration? :) God is good. I'm taking this as the sign similar to that I got last year. Steer clear of touching His sacred vessels, because even with the best of intentions, it's not His Will. For me, anyway. Ha!
Very early this morning I had a dream of St. Michael. It was very brief, but incredibly intense.
I was home with Vincent. I was on the phone with John (who was at work) trying to warn him of an approaching storm. I looked out the window, and I saw a huge tornado swirling down the road towards John (who, for some reason, was on the roof several doors down). It was sucking up buildings, trees, etc. I saw it tearing apart everything. I remember feeling intensely scared for John. I kept yelling for him to take cover.
The tornado suddenly stopped and lost its fury. I watched as the debris began spilling forth from the mouth of the once furious tornado. John, now thinking he was safe, didn't realize that the debris posed more of a threat than the tornado. I was still yelling for him to take cover when I saw him.
It was Saint Michael. I knew it the instant I saw him. He was coming down from the sky, just off from where I saw John, and he was holding his sword above his head as if he were leading a battle charge.
What's odd about how he appeared to me is that he didn't appear as a full-colored "body" like I've seen in paintings and such. Instead, he was an actual entity, but he was almost in negative... sorta like this:
Sorry for the creepy effect, but I couldn't actually make out any of St. Michael's facial features. He was enveloped in such a bright, bright light that it almost seemed to be coming out of him. It was as if he was made out of light and the armor he wore somehow clung to the light that formed him. Strange, right? I dunno. A photo-negative is the closest thing I can think of to what he looked like.
When I saw him, I felt such peace. I knew that everything was going to be okay, but I also knew that we were in for a world of chaos. He brought the knowledge that peace was coming, but before that peace, we'd be dealing with an incredibly destructive tornado of chaos.
Upon seeing him, I turned back to find Vincent. I dropped to my knees and began saying the Prayer to St. Michael over and over again. Before I could find Vincent, though, my alarm woke me up. Regardless, it was an amazing dream, and it's thus far stuck with me through the entire day. St. Michael, pray for us.
So those are mine! For more quick takes, check out Conversion Diary (and start your own!).
So I've seen a lot of my blogger friends take part in Conversion Diary's Quick Take Fridays. I've also been an avid follower of Jennifer Fulwiler's for a while. I'd considered taking part in the past, but my life is honestly not interesting enough to do a weekly "catch-all." Maybe a quarterly one.
Anyway, today I lucked upon some great articles that totaled seven in number. I thought Hey now! That's just enough to make an actual Quick Take Friday post! Then I wondered, Is it cheating to use articles for my quick takes as opposed to using items about my actual life?
The answer I arrived at was "Yes. Yes, it's cheating, but who cares? Doubtful anyone's gonna come after me with some sort of blogging demerits."
So, my 7 Quick Takes:
From Esquire Magazine comes an open letter to the world from a Christian who aims to correct the negative perceptions of an anti-Christian world. My favorite quote:
"... at one point God even speaks to a guy named Balaam through his donkey. Some say God spoke to Balaam through his ass and has been speaking through asses ever since. So if God should choose to use us, then we should be grateful but not think too highly of ourselves. And if upon meeting someone we think God could never use, we should think again."
NBC reports that some yahoo decided to drop raw bacon in the field where Muslims were celebrating the close of Ramadan. This person (people?) also left a note and police are investigating it as a hate crime.
I'm all for investigating this as a hate crime because it's obvious this person (or these people) was attempting to bully others on the grounds of their religion, but I find it interesting that this had no effect on their celebrations and this wasn't even done on sacred grounds / with sacred objects. It's rightly being investigated as a hate crime, but folks are still indignant that the Russian women - who desecrated the main altar of a Cathedral - were convicted of religious intolerance. Color me incredulous.
A high school valedictorian has been denied her diploma by her school because of the use of "Hell" in her speech. They haven't denied her transcripts (which she needs for college), but the diploma is symbolic of her achievements.
I think the approach is heavy-handed, but I do believe she owes the school the written apology it asked for in punishment for her misstep. Her reaction and continued "I'm right, I'm right, I'm right" when she is CLEARLY in the wrong only serves to show how arrogant she is. She provided them with an approved speech, then she decided to throw unnecessary vulgarity in there. As punishment, they with-held the diploma and simply asked for an apology.
I'm sorta bothered by everyone coming to her defense in saying this is an attack of freedom of speech. It's a SCHOOL SPEECH that everyone knows must be approved first by the board (or whoever is in charge of the ceremony). It's to both protect the school and the student from embarrassment. This girl simply thought she was above the rules because of her intelligence and achievements.
Sorry, honey, but you've still gotta play by the rules. This has nothing to do with freedom of speech. It has everything to do with following procedure during a solemn ceremony. Get over yourself. If this is how you respond to situations that call you out for trying to place yourself above authority, you're in for a rude awakening when you make it to the real world.
Fr. Levi over at The Way Out There came across the last words of St. David Lewis, a martyred priest whose story is incredibly touching.
After reading both his life overview and then his final address, I couldn't help but thank God for granting us so brave and faithful witnesses to His Love. Bless our priests.
God certainly knows how to choose them!
This is for all my fellow educators out there. In a special way, it's for those who are part of the unique group of people who work with children who have speech delays (my son being one of those children!).
I have no words to properly express the appreciation I have for your dedication and your love. Michelle at Liturgical Time does a fabulous job of expressing so well just how much we love the children we're blessed to work with, and I think being an educator myself, knowing that love on a personal level and seeing it doled out to my son just makes me that much more appreciative and awe-struck. Those who work with children are special, special people.
By Erika V of CS!
This is almost another cheat, but CatholicSistas has absolutely been on a roll this week. It's like someone swapped their coffee for Red Bull and they've been hammering out gold on a daily basis. Two of their articles REALLY touched me this week and I wanted to highlight them for you.
The first is Infant Death and Scared Parenting. A perinatal loss nurse is interviewed and she gives an inside look into this oft-overlooked area of holistic medicine. Incredibly inspiring and moving.
The second is titled The Trauma and Pain of Abortion After Rape and is written by a woman who conceived through rape. Exceedingly well-written, honest and poignant.
Finally, and maybe this isn't an article so much as a Book Release, but a mystic I've been following for a while, Maria Divine Mercy, has finally had the messages bundled into a book.
However, you don't need to purchase the book to read the messages. You can simply go to the website dedicated to collecting them all and download the PDF.
Again, typical warning goes into effect with mystics. Ask the Holy Spirit for guidance as these are all considered personal revelations. Also, try to forgive the horrific formatting of the website. It's set up very much like a yellow-journalism rag and whoever is in charge of it is definitely trying to capitalize off fear and panic. I don't approve of that. Ignore the terrible formatting and focus on the messages and the Crusade Prayers. I promise you'll thank me later for it.
For more Quick Takes, check out Conversion Diary (who hosts this entertaining weekly blogroll!
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