Vintage RCM: Where are *my* roses??!

Vintage RCM: Where are *my* roses??!

Hello! Today’s post is from exactly seven years ago, on the Feast of St. Thérèse of Lisieux 2009 wherein I prove that I can be jut as bratty and entitled as St. Thérèse was reported to be in her childhood. I hope you enjoy this Vintage edition of RCM. 

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Today is the Feast of St. Thérèse of Lisieux, a Doctor of the Church. I have grown to love her “little way,” since most days I feel (okay, act) pretty little, myself.

Anyway, I have heard wondrous stories of people experiencing the fulfillment of Thérèse’s promise to “let fall a shower of roses” from heaven. And, earlier today, I was wondering – quite unattractively, mind you – where are MY roses?

Alright, so it’s totally selfish. I get it. Patience is a virtue and all that. But my husband and I said the St. Thérèse novena over the past nine days, and I was imptiently wondering, not if, but WHEN my roses would show up.

Today also happens to be my spiritual director’s feast day. She said they don’t celebrate birthdays in her religious order, but they do celebrate their feast days, so I thought I’d drop off a card on my way to another appointment across town.

Turns out, she had taken her feast day off, lucky lady. I dropped off the card and, since she wasn’t there, I had a few extra minutes to say a quick prayer in the on-site chapel.

My eyes fixed on the tabernacle straight ahead, and I had to smile.therese-roses

There, on either side of the tabernacle holding the precious Blessed Sacrament of Jesus Christ, were two vases holding the most gorgeous, perfect, vibrant pink roses I have ever laid eyes on.

Now, I know those roses weren’t originally intended for me, and yet, in a way, they were absolutely meant for me. I think Thérèse was showing me, in her simple yet profound way, that my consolation always has been and always will be waiting for me in the Tabernacle. She used “my” roses to adjust my attitude and point me in the right direction.

Thank you, fair Maiden of Lisieux, for the heavenly reminder. May Jesus be praised now and forevermore!

Love,

heather

 

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31 Days of Unexpected Joy: Consolation (Day 22)

31 Days of Unexpected Joy: Consolation (Day 22)

It’s fascinating to me how many “bad” days I’ve had since October 1st. Truly. I mean, right out of the gate things were wicked hard, and I wondered, “What have I gotten myself into??!” Or, to flagrantly (and poorly) steal from St. Catherine of Siena, I’ve definitely wondered, “Lord, if this is the sort of joy you bring to your friends, no wonder you have so many enemies!”

I hadn’t planned on letting this cat out of the bag until October 31 or even November 1 (assuming my brain still works at that point), but I must admit: the School of Joy has contained many more hard knocks than I anticipated. 

I mean, choose to write about joy, and surely God will load you up with all sorts of happy experiences and fun anecdotes to share with your blog readers, right? Right?!

Of course, it hasn’t all been bad 

And yet … it has been hard.

Praise the Lord for Pope Saint John Paul II, man, because I think he might have personally asked Almighty God to give me a break on his Feast Day today. And so I present to you, The Top Five Consolations for Thursday:

Consolation #1: NO MORNING CHAOS

I started the day with a quick trip to the lab (only a busy + exhausted Mom would consider a blood draw as a break, amIright?), thus completely bypassing the crushingly exhausting morning routine. I got home just in time to tag my husband, swap cars, and head in early (early! What a concept!) to school drop-off.

Consolation #2: HELPFUL HUSBAND

As I’m driving, I realize it’s Pope Saint JP2’s Feast, and think: “Wow! Since we’re early today, I can go to daily Mass in honor of JP2 on his feast day. How marvelous!” We arrive at school, and I don’t even have to search for shoes and coats for my little people because my husband already did that before they got in the van. He is so great.  We exit the vehicle and head in to Mass.

Consolation #3: TO MASS OR NOT TO MASS

Except … there was no Mass. Okay, so this is kind of a bittersweet joy, because there was no Mass. Honestly, I was hoping for Mass. However, because of schedules, there weren’t any priests available, so we had a Communion service instead. The joy (please don’t hate me for saying this) is that the Communion service took about 12 minutes. Twelve. My 4- and 2-year-olds didn’t even have a chance to think about doing (m)anything(s) naughty because it was over in a flash. And, yet, in that 12 minutes, we still said prayers, heard the Word of God, and received Jesus in the Eucharist … what a wonderful way to begin the day!

Consolation #4: CHILD’S PLAY

I played board games with my preschooler and toddler and I didn’t lose my ever-loving mind. There may be some of you with much more patient temperaments than mine. I have gotten so, so, sooooo much better over the years, but practicing patience is really energy-sapping for me. Because of this, I generally avoid playing games with my kids. Legos and blocks and imaginative play I can handle, but usually I  keep the board games on the tippy-top shelf  in the boys’ room (it’s almost as if they don’t exist!) so as to avoid the crying, ripping, etc. that happens when attempting to play a game in a civilized manner. For some reason, however, I decided to do forego the non-essential trip to Costco and head to Candyland with the littles instead.

Blame the loss of blood, blame the surge of energy gained by skipping morning routine or by receiving the Eucharist, but it was pretty cool. Okay, sure, the 2-year-old couldn’t wait his turn, and the 4-year-old had a crying meltdown because she wanted to wiiiinnnn, but the real joy was that I did it and was freakishly calm, even for the non-enjoyable parts. I mean, I’ve gotten much better at faking calm on the outside, saying, “Your brother’s game piece does not belong in your mouth!” while smiling through clenched teeth, for example, has become easier. But I didn’t even have to fake itI was calm on the outside AND on the inside. And that, my friends, is nothing short of a minor miracle. Truly.

Consolation #5: BABY LOVE

A friend picked me up to attend a new women’s study on – wait for it – one of JP2’s writings. And even though I didn’t get to participate in the whole meeting, it was only because I got to hold my friend’s squishy baby girl for a chunk of time. It was so great! Normally, I am ecstatic when I have a minute to be child-free, but it was really and delight and a joy to have tiny baby hands and suckling noises and coos and smiles staring me in the face. I don’t think I stopped smiling the whole time I was holding her.

So, there you have it, friends – an oasis of consolation in an otherwise terribly, horribly, Jesus-take-the-wheel, living one Glory Be at a time sort of month. And I do believe I have a Saint to thank for it.

Thank you, Pope Saint John Paul II! We love you.

Pope Saint JP2 Funnin

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31 Days of Unexpected Joy: Laughter (Day 21)

31 Days of Unexpected Joy: Laughter (Day 21)

“A joyful heart is good medicine but a broken spirit dries up the bones.” – Proverbs 17:22

I was wondering if anyone else could use some joy tonight? How about a little laughter? Apparently good St. Padre Pio thought laughter was the bomb:

serve God with laughter

And if you’re not feeling the joy tonight, friends, you must check out the giggles here, and perhaps you’ll crack a smile or make a joyful noise yourself:

Until tomorrow, may God richly bless y’all.

heather

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31 Days of Unexpected Joy: New Saints! (Day 18)

31 Days of Unexpected Joy: New Saints! (Day 18)

Happy Sunday, Friends!

I am so thrilled with the canonization of St. Therese’s parents, Louis and Zelie Martin. It is fantastic news for the Church as a whole and married couples in particular that these two are the very first married couple to be canonized in modern times. Aren’t they amazing?

The Martins

If you’d like to read Pope Francis’ words during the canonization Mass homily, his remarks may be found here.

“The radiant witness of these new saints inspires us to persevere in joyful service to our brothers and sisters, trusting in the help of God and the maternal protection of Mary. From heaven may they now watch over us and sustain us by their powerful intercession.” -Pope Francis

Until tomorrow, may God abundantly bless y’all. Sts. Louis and Zelie Martin, pray for us!

heather

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31 Days of Unexpected Joy: Winners (Day 15)

31 Days of Unexpected Joy: Winners (Day 15)

Hello, Friends! Happy Thursday, and Happy Feast of St. Teresa of Avila, who said:

“To reach something good, it is useful to have gone astray.” -St. Teresa of Avila

bee still studio teresa of avila
Courtesy of BeeStill Studios http://bromickeymcgrath.com/

Amen, St. Teresa, Amen.

She also gave us this classic quote:

“From silly devotions and sour-faced saints, good Lord, deliver us.” -St. Teresa of Avila

Now that’s my kind of saint.

Some of you loyal readers may recall that I posted about beauty last week, and featured these amazing Saints for All Occasions notecards. At the time, I said that one blessed entrants would win her own set of notecards, but, as is often the case, I was wrong. Dead wrong. After the post published, the amazingly talented Sandy DiPasqua, who cannot be outdone in generosity, said,

“Heather, what a fun post! How about we allow for not one, but ten notecard winners?” -Sandra DiPasqua

Are you kidding me?! Now, that’s my kind of giveaway!

So, if the winners* would pretty-please email their shipping addresses to: RealCatholicMom @ gmail {dot} com, and we’ll be sure your notecards get to you post haste! Please use “31Days giveaway winner” in your subject link. And I thank you.

Also, also, for EVERYONE who entered, if you have an iPhone and would like to receive the Novena app for free, please let me know, and I will pass this information on to sweet Sandy DiPasqua as well.

Claim your prizes, ladies!

Thank you, thank you for reading, for entering, and thank you so very much again to Sandra DiPasqua. You are one kind and giving human being, and I can almost guarantee that my readers will remember you in their prayers today. Right? Right. 

Until tomorrow, God bless y’all!

heather

*Winners (selected completely randomly) are: Kathy, Jeannine, Elisabeth, Lauren, Sarah, Katherine, Courtney, Alyson, Laurel, & Sterling. Hooray! -H

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