Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Planting and Praying

Today I am enjoying a glorious Spring with sunshine, green grass, and flowers to plant. I have little starter pots boasting sun flower sprouts. They are getting taller by the minute. In another area a row of morning glories are ready to step out of their egg cartoon nurseries. The next step is to clear space outside for the plants to flourish on their own. Squirrels scamper over our yard and dig little holes to hide their treasures. There is an elusive possum who likes to hide outback too. Once I plant the seedlings outside they will need stamina to withstand the heavy rains, the wind and the four legged marauders.
Yet I know the plants will survive as long as I do my part by watering and guarding them.
We are a few days from the Feast of Pentecost, the Birthday of the Church. Jesus promised to send us the Holy Spirit and he kept that promise and he still fulfills his promise. The wobbly seedlings of our attempts at virtue, the seeds of our good resolve and the desires of our hearts to stay closer to God will be strengthened by the grace of the Holy Spirit. An oft-quoted Bible verse says, "If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts." As rain softens and prepares the soil  to receive good seed and young plants, so the Holy Spirit will grace us with what we need. One of the books that I am trying to absorb and which I recommend is "The Sanctifier" by Archbishop Luis Martinez. The author helps us to recognize how the Spirit is leading us to a greater love of God and neighbor. I find the book very encouraging. There is a smaller book called "Secrets of the Spirit" which has excerpts from The Sanctifier and a few other works of Martinez. You will find both books at

Friday, May 18, 2012

Waiting for the Holy Spirit

The Easter Season is almost over and here I am just beginning to write again! Yesterday we celebrated the Feast of the Ascension of Jesus into heaven. Today we--by the "we" I mean the whole Church--is praying the Novena for Pentecost. As the Acts of the Apostles tells us after Jesus ascended into heaven he instructed his followers to wait for the coming of the Holy Spirit. He told them, "You will be clothed with power from on high." That is a reassuring promise, especially when you think that the Apostles up until that time were a rather timid bunch of fishermen and assorted other gentlemen. They were gathered in prayer "with Mary the Mother of Jesus." To be rooted in Scripture then it is good to pray with "Mary the Mother of Jesus."
Prayer is what enables us to be in the presence of God, and to gain a spiritual energy and resources that we cannot have without God. I remember a young father in Hawaii describing his little boy's comments when they would begin their family's prayers at night. The boy would reassure his daddy: "Now we've got 'the
power' Daddy!"
This month of May I have been making an effort to pray the rosary for many intentions. Of course, praying for peace in troubled areas is one of those intentions. The rosary is compared to the gospel, since it reminds us of all the major episodes in the life of Jesus. Someone once said it is like carrying the gospel in your pocket.
I pray too for all the folks whom I meet in my mission: either face-to-face or virtually.
After seeing once again the movie, Julia and Julie, which depicts a young woman who was faithful not only to cooking but to her daily blog, I resolved to get back to the keyboard once again!