A Faith Journey

Canada

Casinos…

I have been cheating a bit and sharing articles and the such without much input.

Most all of them need nothing from me!  But, it was pointed out to me that I, myself, am not saying much.

Very well then…I will TRY to actually WRITE more ;)

But for now, I found another article that I want to share.

In Toronto for a while now, Mayor Rob Ford and others have been pushing for a Casino to be built downtown.  Then talk had it why not Vaughan?  Or other areas of the GTA.

From eHow.comI am adamantly against a Casino being built here. There is one in Niagara Falls and people can go to others, no need to build another!

Why am I so dead-set against them?

This may sound corny, but I will never, ever forget the first time I went to an Indian Reservation Casino in California.
What I saw still today makes me ache with compassion, fear, and loss…

First, we went into the actual casino. No windows. That is what struck me first. You have no idea of the time of day!

Then, the people all “connected” to a machine. They had a card that was inserted into a slot machine that kept a record of their winnings, money and the such I presume.

Finally, and this actually sent a wave of loneliness and loss, injustice and sadness over me, we passed by the card tables and I observed an elderly group at the table. Their appearance was not one of affluence. If anything they were reminiscent of people that are on a fixed income…and yet, here they were gambling by the Hundreds of Dollars.  In the two minutes we stood there I observed an elderly woman gamble over $ 1000.00 dollars away!!
That was more than I made in a month at the time!  I observed her clothing, her interactions, she was not happy, she was alone, and she look a bit dishevelled.

That was it for me, we had to leave.

Then we drove around the reservation lands…The Poverty. The Decay.

How was it possible that people were up in arms over all the money that Casinos supposedly bring the reservations??

NONE of it reached the people.  None.  I could see it. The community center building was burned and obviously had been this way in quite a while.  The houses were old. It felt so lonely.

Now Reno…

We did not go to any casinos there, it was more of a “Drive-Thru” type of event.

I saw many, many people.  Again, no joy.  I saw prostitution. I saw decay. Closer to the casinos there were many lights…but the city was not reaping wealth.

Vegas…

Sin City.  INDEED!  I remember going there when I was younger, Treasure Island was “okay” for kids to see.  Of course there is always Circus Circus…but it wasn’t so “Adult” when I was younger.  Now…have you SEEN the Treasure Island show???

Definitely not a place to take my family any more, unless we are going to The Valley of Fire or Red Rock Canyon.  But NOT the Strip.

Now, I realize that my pathos-ridden account will sway no one.

How about Cardinal Collins’ letter? You will find it HERE courtesy of The Catholic Register.

It is understandable that governments are tempted by the tax revenues and supposed economic benefits that gambling may generate, Collins said, but the benefits are “far from clear.” But even if there were long-term benefits, Collins believes casinos have a “negative social impact that outweighs such benefits” and they also “have an adverse effect on the vitality and social health of our community.”

He said gambling is based on a fantasy of a quick solution to financial problems and that it appeals to “the most vulnerable and the most desperate.”

“This is a cruel illusion and it is not wholesome for governments to promote it,” he said.

 


Pink Shirt Day!

Pink ShirtDon’t forget to wear pink tomorrow, February 27th, 2013!

Stand Up and Against Bullying!

Here is Pink Shirt Day’s Website!

Here is last year’s concise, yet full story.

Just remember PINK SHIRT TOMORROW :)

International Pink Shirt Day is April 10 this year, just so you know ;)

 


The Joys of The Great White North

As the handful of you, my loyal readers (thanks Mom ♥) know, I am an OG (original for those of you not familiar with the expression) Valley Girl.

Like Totally! Like, OMG, that’s like totally tubular, like I know ;)

Back in ’07 that romantic side, some (including myself at times) may call it the stupid side, decided, after much, MUCH thought and consideration (including My Beloved Babies’ and my deal that they would come out and live with me) to move Northward and Eastward toward (like how I did that…the ward thing) to The Great White North…to TO to be exact (TO meaning Toronto, geesh I have to do all this translating).

From GoCanada.about.com

Last night was one of the many downfalls of having made that decision.

What was last night, you ask??

Uh, Hello, the SUPER BOWL!!!

Now don’t get me wrong, I still get to watch the game, but Dude! One of the best parts of the Super Bowl is the Commercials!

Here in the Great White I got to see a few, but mostly, I saw Hockey Commercials!

Now, truth be told, I am okay with hockey.  Not the biggest fan, the only games I will really watch are the Jr. Hockey World Championship games…They are Very Passionate!  But as for NHL…I’ll pass…I may watch as they get closer to the Stanley Cup, though it does depend on the team…

Anywho…yeah so I miss watching the Super Bowl Commercials.  Thank Goodness for the Internet!!

In case you missed them too…here they are! Well, the top 10 according to this Yahoo article.

And yes, the Clydesdale one made me cry!

Want to know what else is Über exciting in the Great White North??

We will no longer have Pennies!!

Yeah, I still am not too sure about that decision, but hey, I’m no Economist.

If you want to read more about it, here is another Yahoo article.

What is the most important part of this article? At least in my humble, uninformed, but-you-totally-need-to-know-cuz-I-said-so opinon??

From forgetthebox.net

When the penny goes, will “a penny for your thoughts” be meaningless? Will future generations look blankly at you if you advise: “a penny saved is a penny earned”?
Word nerds rejoice — they’re safe.

YES!!!!!!!!! The Proverbs will be safe ;)

Okay…that is enough for my Monday Morning Rant.

Oh and Congrats to the Ravens!!

You guys got lucky there in the end…it was close…too close.

And yes, Mami, I know Dad (he’s a Hard Core 9ers fan!!) isn’t as thrilled as My Pumpkin and Ticky (my eldest son and daughter, they Love their Ravens, but due to loyalty to their Grandpa, they still also root for the 9ers, so they won no matter how you look at it) but it was a good game!

Happy Monday to you All!!

Oh, just had to add that at least we Had Power ;)

Had to do it, come on now!  :P


For Hurting Marriages

Retrouvaille

If you have been to this blog before, you may be familiar with Retrouvaille already.

If you are new, first, Thanks!  Next, allow me to quickly catch you up to speed…

My Husband and I have experienced a great many, many difficulties in our Marriage, to the point of separating and close to calling it quits permanently.

We received a lifeline. My Beloved Patootie, not wanting to give up on us found Retrouvaille, a lifeline for hurting marriages.

I cannot recommend it enough!!

Here you can find a  post by my Husband and you are more than welcome to peruse via the search feature at the top.  Just search Retrouvaille.

Here is a pic he put together that I HAVE to share with You!!

Retrouvaille

And please, do not keep this information to yourself.

If you happen to not be in Toronto, Retrouvaille is WORLD WIDE!!!!!!!!

Check out their website here.

God Love You †

And let others know, we all need help sometimes ♥

 


Oh Canada

They’re right! This has to be THE BEST ever made Tourism Video of Canada, eh ;)

After seeing this, people may no longer think that all Canucks are Lumber Jacks that live in Igloos and speak funny English because of the French.

Wait, that may have been just me.  :P

Gotta say I got all excited when I saw TO!!!  TWICE!!! See if you can spot it…


St. Kateri Tekakwitha

From DioceseMontreal.org

From DioceseMontreal.org

It was made official yesterday, Lily of the Mohawks, Kateri Tekakwitha, is one of the newest Saints that will, hopefully, now intercede for us before Our Lord :)

In naming her a saint, the Pope noted in a Vatican City ceremony how unusual it was in Tekakwitha’s culture for her to dedicate herself to her Catholic faith.

“May her example help us to live where we are, loving Jesus without denying who we are,” said Benedict, who spoke in English and French in a nod to Tekakwitha’s Canadian heritage. “Saint Kateri, protectress of Canada and the first Native American saint, we entrust you to the renewal of the faith in the first nations and in all of North America!”

Nelson Wyatt, The Canadian Press

St. Kateri is now the second North American Native to become a Saint.

San Juan Diego, from México, was the first.

Sadly, it took way too long for them to be canonized, in my humble opinion…the good thing is they are now FINALLY Saints!!

Please Pray for us that we may model your Courage and Undying Love for God.

Amen.


The Theory and Practice Divide

On my way to work this morning I was listening to a Morning Radio Show and what I heard has got my poor, feeble brain working overtime.

There apparently was a radio interview that the DJ conducted.  He interviewed a young, conservative male.  From West Virginia.

The only part they played, as one must go onto their FB, I believe it was, to hear the entire thing.
The gist of it was that this young man was against Homosexuality and was being bashed and berated for it.

This young man quotes Scripture.  He again is bashed for it and people of course are basically calling him a dumb bible thumper.
The young man is ridiculed as he tells the DJ that though Some scientists are claiming that homosexuality is something you are born with, that he firmly believes one chooses to live that way.

He tells the DJ that it boils down to whether one will believe a Scientist or the Creator of all things, Science and Scientists…

The DJ responds, almost scoffs, that he believes in Scientists.

Of course we all understand the manipulation of the media and the the Radio Station is manipulating the interview to their advantage…but here is what struck me.

How are we prepping our Youth, our Kids to handle this?

Last night I watched 21 Jump Street.  The movie.

Yes, I love Stupid Comedies.  How can one not?  ;)

Besides there is a self-deprecating scene.  Well, more like a jab at writers.  It is hilarious!

But what I want to get to is a scene where the character Jenko, played by Channing Tatum, punches a gay, African-American kid.

Everyone is shocked at what he has done. How dare he?  What is wrong with him? ETC…

That scene, paired with the interview today are nagging at me.

They should be nagging at us all!!

I am an adult and I am unsure at times as to how I would respond to certain situations regarding Homosexuality.

I Love the Sinner and Hate the Sin.  I have and will continue to voice my disapproval of Homosexuality and it being taught in our Children’s Schools as NORMAL!

I will continue to state that Children need a Mother and a Father!

But, what about my kids?  They have to go to school and deal with Peer Pressure.  With Societal Pressure.

I, myself, have issues when dealing with the latter at times. How can I expect my children to deal with it?

Yes, there is Prayer and those you surround yourself with, but what if you’re alone.  I know God is always with us, but I also know that we are called to be ridiculed, mocked, and to suffer for Him and for our Faith.

How can I prepare my children and all of the Youth that I come into contact with?

Theory and Practice can many times be so divided and different.  It is like 2 separate worlds.

It takes a Great Person to not fall victim to the Thinking of their Time.

But what if you’re just an Average Joe or Joanne?

God Help Us.

 


An Update. Eh.

Yes, it seems as I have been neglecting the Blog.

I will admit, I have been swamped in the Non-Media, Non-Electronic, Real World for a while now.

For the record, it has not all been bad distraction either ;)

We are very Blessed as we have an Associate Pastor from my Old Parish in my Beloved So Cal staying with us for a few weeks.

Seems he is loving the Great White!  Not that I can blame him.  Especially right now that all is green, flowering, allergy-ridden, warm, humid, sunny, unless it’s raining, and Beautiful.

Seriously though, Canada is Beautiful!

So much so that I came across a book the other day at the Roots Store that I MUST pick up and send my Pumpkin Princess.

The U.S. of Eh?: How Canada Secretly Controls the United States and Why That’s OK by Kerry Colburn and Rob Sorenson.

As soon as I pick it up, I will share with you some of the little gems, but as a taste…according to Colburn, an American, and Sorensen, a Canuck, American Everyday Life, such as Media, movies, music, tv, and even bits of social policy are 70% infiltrated by Canucks!

So if that isn’t Canadian Influence, what is ;)

Oh and this one SHOCKED ME!!!

 

From the book, “The U.S. of Eh?: How Canada Secretly Controls the United States and Why That’s OK” by Kerry Colburn and Rob Sorenson.

 

And so, so many more, eh.

God Love You All ♥

 

 


Happy May Day

Today is International Workers Day.

Feliz Día del Trabajo!

“International Workers’ Day (also known as May Day) is a celebration of the international labour movement and left-wing movements. It commonly sees organized street demonstrations and marches by working people and their labour unions throughout most of the world. May 1 is a national holiday in more than 80 countries. It is also celebrated unofficially in many other countries (Wikipedia).

And today, not coincidentally, is also the Feast Day of Saint Joseph the Worker, Patron Saint of Canada.

 

“Apparently in response to the “May Day” celebrations for workers sponsored by Communists, Pius XII instituted the feast of St. Joseph the Worker in 1955. But the relationship between Joseph and the cause of workers has a much longer history.

In a constantly necessary effort to keep Jesus from being removed from ordinary human life, the Church has from the beginning proudly emphasized that Jesus was a carpenter, obviously trained by Joseph in both the satisfactions and the drudgery of that vocation. Humanity is like God not only in thinking and loving, but also in creating. Whether we make a table or a cathedral, we are called to bear fruit with our hands and mind, ultimately for the building up of the Body of Christ.

Comment: ‘The Lord God then took the man and settled him in the garden of Eden, to cultivate and care for it” (Genesis 2:15). The Father created all and asked humanity to continue the work of creation. We find our dignity in our work, in raising a family, in participating in the life of the Father’s creation. Joseph the Worker was able to help participate in the deepest mystery of creation. Pius XII emphasized this when he said, “The spirit flows to you and to all men from the heart of the God-man, Savior of the world, but certainly, no worker was ever more completely and profoundly penetrated by it than the foster father of Jesus, who lived with Him in closest intimacy and community of family life and work. Thus, if you wish to be close to Christ, we again today repeat, ‘Go to Joseph’ ‘(see Genesis 41:44).

Quote: In Brothers of Men, René Voillaume of the Little Brothers of Jesus speaks about ordinary work and holiness: ‘Now this holiness (of Jesus) became a reality in the most ordinary circumstances of life, those of word, of the family and the social life of a village, and this is an emphatic affirmation of the fact that the most obscure and humdrum human activities are entirely compatible with the perfection of the Son of God…in relation to this mystery, involves the conviction that the evangelical holiness proper to a child of God is possible in the ordinary circumstances of someone who is poor and obliged to work for his living.’”

~American Catholic.org


Saint Jean-Baptiste de la Salle and Why I Am Not Juanita

Growing up I remember always looking at the Calendars and seeing the name of my Saint. And I hated the fact that my Mom should have named me Juana.
I don’t like that name.

Please! No offense to any Juana’s out there! In Elementary School one of my good friends was named Juana and I Loved her to death. The thing is, she was a Juana. Well, Juanita. The name FIT her.
Me, a Juana! Or Juanita!!! I don’t think so!
So NOT ME!

I was so grateful that my Mami named me Narda Violeta.
Though my Tio Martin always would say that she should have just named me Jardin! Garden!
Thanks a lot Tio!

You know, I never really bothered to learn much about Mi Santo.
Oh, in case you may not be familiar, in México, and many other cultures, the custom was to name your child according to his/her Santo.

You would get the name off of the Calendar.

To this day, if you go to a Mercado, like Vallarta (plug, I know), at the end of the year and during the New Year, they give you Calendars. Each day has a name under it, that is the Santo of that day. Hence, Saint’s Feast Days.

You can guess when many Lupita’s or Lupe’s were born, December 12th. Though not always, as Lupita IS our Mother. Many Mexicanos will name their children Guadalupe simply to Honour Her. But it is almost Blasphemous to NOT name your child Guadalupe if they are born on the 12th of December.
And it works that way with any Saint of Feast Day.

The Ascension = Chonito’s and Chonita’s.
The Assumption = Asuncion.
Immaculate Conception = Concha.
And the list goes on and on.

That is why you will find many, many gender neutral names. They become that way because both men and women will be named after a Holy Day, Saint, Feast Day.

Again, my Mom could have named me Juana :? But she didn’t. Gracias, Mami ♥

Where was I?
Ah, si…

I never really learned much about Mi Santo. I knew his name and his Feast Day, but that was pretty much it.

Now that I am older, much, much, much older, I am beginning to realize that he is my Santo for a Reason.

I truly enjoy working with Youth.
Perhaps it IS my Calling.

I have been wanting to teach for a while, but since I do not possess Certification here in Ontario, I put it on the back burner.

I have decided that I am going for it!

We are going to be tight. REALLY Tight financially, and after having bought a home :?
That does not seem like a great idea!
But, I think, I feel, I Believe it IS my calling to work with Youth!

I read the quote below from AmericanCatholic.org and it brought tears to my eyes.

Just a couple of days ago I was invited to look into Fe Y Celo.net or Faith and Zeal.net and see if I would contribute!
Needless to say, I am Truly Humbled and Honoured!!
Have you seen what they do?!
What they write?!?!
If not, check it out!

What I am getting at is they educate. They catechize, Youth…

I keep getting little voices and signs about schools…

I need to discern if it is Him or just random…but I am beginning to believe that it my be Him.
I have been Happiest, Satisfied, Accomplished, Useful, Felt that I am Changing the World, Doing my Part when I have worked with Youth. I need…I want to return to that.

I have applied for various positions to no avail, but perhaps I am applying to the wrong ones…

St. John Baptist de la Salle, San Juan, por favor…te pido e intercedas por mi.
Ilumina mi sendero. Guia mis pasos. Ayuda a encontrar mi llamado. Y si es el de trabajar con la Juventud, entconces, por favor, intercede por mi y ayudame a encontrar un buen empleo.

Please, please Pray that I find my Vocation.

Sn. Juan Diego, tu tambien!!!!

Amen.

Complete dedication to what he saw as God’s will for him dominated the life of John Baptist de la Salle. In 1950, Pope Pius XII named him patron of schoolteachers for his efforts in upgrading school instruction. As a young seventeenth-century Frenchman, John had everything going for him: scholarly bent, good looks, noble family background, money, refined upbringing. At the early age of 11, he received the tonsure and started preparation for the priesthood, to which he was ordained at 27. He seemed assured then of a life of dignified ease and a high position in the Church.
But God had other plans for John, which were gradually revealed to him in the next several years. During a chance meeting with M. Nyel of Raven, he became interested in the creation of schools for poor boys in Raven, where he was stationed. Though the work was extremely distasteful to him at first, he became more involved in working with the deprived youths.

Once convinced that this was his divinely appointed mission, John threw himself wholeheartedly into the work, left home and family, abandoned his position as canon at Rheims, gave away his fortune and reduced himself to the level of the poor to whom he devoted his entire life.

The remainder of his life was closely entwined with the community of religious men he founded, the Brothers of the Christian School (Christian Brothers, or De La Salle Brothers). This community grew rapidly and was successful in educating boys of poor families using methods designed by John, preparing teachers in the first training college for teachers and also setting up homes and schools for young delinquents of wealthy families. The motivating element in all these endeavors was the desire to become a good Christian.

Yet even in his success, John did not escape experiencing many trials: heartrending disappointment and defections among his disciples, bitter opposition from the secular schoolmasters who resented his new and fruitful methods, and persistent opposition from the Jansenists of his time, whose moral regidity and pessimism abut the human condition John resisted vehemently all his life.

Afflicted with asthma and rheumatism in his last years, he died on Good Friday at 68 and was canonized in 1900.

COMMENT:

Complete dedication to one’s calling by God, whatever it may be, is a rare quality. Jesus asks us to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30b, emphasis added). Paul gives similar advice: “Whatever you do, do from the heart…” (Colossians 3:23).

QUOTE:

“What is nobler than to mold the character of the young? I consider that he who knows how to form the youthful mind is truly greater than all painters, sculptors and all others of that sort” (St. John Chrysostom).

~ American Catholic.org


Caution: Not a Joyous Post

This is probably what the Punks looked like! Except probably younger and I want to believe not as experienced-looking or dark or creepy! I want to believe that they were as I said, Kids with Nothing Better to Do!

So I get up this morning to head to work and my Car Door is OPEN!

My first reaction is WTF?!?!

I look inside and the entire car is in disarray.

My Toll Container – literally an empty hand cream container with change for tolls - is open and on the seat. There was a US Dollar Bill in there, now there were only dimes, nickels and pennies.

The Drink Tray was pulled out and the middle section that holds change had some nickels and 6 quarters. But the toonies and loonies were gone.

All of the Chargers and GPS Cables were strewn about the floor, the seats…

They literally seemed to just be taking stuff out of the glove compartment and the compartments and tossing them aside.

Upon my quick inspection, it seems they just took the cash And my CD’s!!!

As my Other Half said, “I guess Luis Miguel CD’s are more lucrative!”

LOL!! I have to laugh because it is utterly ridiculous!

What really upset me though was the Police response.

Complete an On-Line Form and there will be a response within 72 hours!!

REALLY?!?!?

Dude! I so would understand if the YRP was like swamped! But, Dude! They are SLEEPING in their Patrol Cars half the time!

Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful that crime in York Region is so low that the Police can nap in their vehicles, but Come On Now! If a crime has been committed, can you not wake up and check it out?!?

I remember last Winter, no, a couple of Winters ago, my Other Half and I were at the Police Station filling out a report because his Psycho-Stalker emailed him again (Have I told you about that?  I don’t think directly, I don’t remember. Either way that is a story for later).  Well, the desk received a call that a tree had fallen on Teston and they needed them to go. Mind you, they were not going to pick-up the tree or anything of the sort, they were going to direct traffic in order to allow those that were going to do the work to do so safely.  Their response…

“What time is it? Oh you know, we’re going to have lunch first.”

Note: The Officers had been there the entire time (20 min) lollygagging.

UGH!

And then…this is my biggest beef against YRP!!!

When they pull over a vehicle, they do so at the Busy Intersection/Street!!!  Four Lanes total.  Sometimes TWO!  And they just block one during PEAK TRAFFIC causing a HUGE Back-Up!

DUDE!!

LAPD will put their lights on and are INTELLIGENT Enough to turn on the radio and ask you to pull into a Parking Lot, side street or shoulder (if applicable).

Not YRP, oh no!  They just stop the car right there!

SERIOUSLY?!?!

AAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

I am so NOT Impressed with YRP!!!  Not right now!

Overall, I Respect and Admire that they put their lives on the line…but right now, I am quite upset!  And I feel rightfully so!

Oh, for the record, when I got robbed in San Berdu (San Bernardino, crime city in CA), the cops were there PRESENT, Flesh and Blood within 20 Minutes!!!
And THEY had WORK!!

So don’t give me any “Oh they were busy” Crap!!  I saw a Patrol Officer yesterday morning sitting in his car watching the Bell Guy fiddling with some cables!

You know…it so does NOT Feel good to have your space invaded.

It is not even about the stuff, although in San Berdu they stole many things that meant a lot to me, my Pumpkin Princess’ Baptismal Necklace, her first ring, her first pair of earrings, a diamond ring that my Mom and Dad got me for my Birthday, my Programmer Graduation Ring, my Promise Ring, and much more jewelry that had been gifted to me by my Madrina Hilda and my Kids from the Center.

*sigh*

Damn Kids!!!

You know that these were punk-arse kids with nothing better to do (Though there are many more constructive things for them to be doing, like SLEEPING!).

So, yeah…I have vented!

Thank you Cathartic Blog ;)

 


Pink Shirt Day!

Today we all wear Pink Shirts to represent how we are United against Bullying!

We do this in order to bring awareness to bullying issues and hopefully bring discussion as to what we can do to create a safe and respectful environment in all of our communities.

Why Pink you ask?

Well, Pink Shirt Day is not just an engaging way to get kids, especially students, though not limited to just them ;)  thinking about bullying and what they can do to create a safe and respectful environment in schools.

All of this started back in 2007 when 2 High School Students in the Province of Nova Scotia, Travis Price and David Shepherd, took a stand against bullying.

How?

These two Brave Students asked all of their peers to wear pink to school in support of a male classmate who had been bullied for wearing a pink shirt!

Little did they know that their actions would create a Grassroots Movement that would attract worldwide attention!

So…Make sure you wear Your Pink Shirt today and on March 31st, Stand Up to Bullying Day and April 11th International Pink Shirt Day!


Tomorrow?

I, as many people do, have a “Signature” on my emails.  

It is a quote, from Scripture.  One that I enjoy very, very much.  It speaks tons to me. It is a great reminder for me.  

It is from Matthew.  6:34 to be exact:

Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

In case you haven’t figured it out yet, I worry.  A lot.  About everything and about nothing.  About that which I have control over and that which I have absolutely no control whatsoever.

It is part of my charm ;)

Well, at my Parish, St. Joseph the Worker, we are very Blessed to have an Amazing Bible Study Class facilitated by, an individual that I call a walking encyclopaedia; for those of you that do not know what an Encyclopaedia is, way back in the day, before Google, we used to have to go to libraries and do research in BOOKS!  Some of these reference books included encyclopaedias.  THink of it as Wikipedia but in a whole set of books, A – Z, with all the information on countries, inventions, people, wars, and all the things that you can imagine, it was all there, in a set of books! Crazy, huh.  

So, this facilitator, like I said is like a walking Encyclopaedia.  He knows so much about scripture, that our Pastor, Fr. Mario, even asks him for his opinion and take on things!

This past year, we “made” our own Bibles.

I realize that the above sentence may have caused your jaws to drop to the floor or for a gasp to emit from your mouths…but trust me, it is not what you think.

What we did was take the NRSV Bible, add a Companion at the end, and have our Parish’s Logo printed on the front.

Not our Bible, this is just to provide you with a visual.

Why?

Because at our Parish, we are going back to Scripture.

Father has removed all the Missals and replaced them with the Bible and the Companion.  Thus, Parishioners are forced to read from their Bibles! What a Thought!

And, as I said, there is a Companion. It is composed of different sections.  You will find a How to Use the Bible.  Though completely unnecessary, I know, because ALL Catholic Christians know their Bibles inside and out, but this was done for those that, you know, may need a way of explaining it to others.  ;)

One can also find different Examinations of Conscience.  Based on the Commandments and the Beatitudes for Adults, Youth and Children.

One can find a section just on the Parables.

One can find a section on Devotionals and Prayers.

One can even find a Quick, Self-Help Section.  This consists of big general topics like Self-Esteem, Lust, Sex, Divorce, Homosexuality and many, many other big topics.  Underneath these topics you will find Scripture passages that will Nourish, Help and Guide you.

One can find a rich array of resources for the Mass, for Bible Study, and Bible Facts.

One can find many, many more riches in this Companion.  But do not fret, you do not have to be a Parishioner to be able to see these valuable objects.  Father had some Leather-bound ones made that people can buy for a mere $ 40.00!  

They have gold trim, leather-bound, large 13 pt. font, and the companion at the end.  

Now, believe it or not, this post is not to sell you a Bible, though if you want one, there are still a few left…

No, this post’s intention is to share with you what occurred when I sent an email to the Walking Encyclopaedia.

I emailed him and of course my Scriptural Passage was at the bottom of my message.

Well, our Walking Encyclopaedia did not address why I was emailing, but, he instead sent me the following:

 

If we look closely to Jesus’ message, given through Matthew, there is no tomorrow. We are in the presence of our Lord all the time.

We have learned to think about tomorrow because of our imperfection of being humans. Our body has to rest, the night comes, the light of our sun disappears and we think about tomorrow. (Your birthday is every day and that includes your Valentine, anniversaries etc.)

God never rests and the sun will work for a few billion years.

If we are in union with Jesus, our Spirit breathes the eternal oxygen, receives that bread and water that does not make it thirst or hungry forever.

Why do we have to worry if we know that our Lord is with us always?

1/3 of the Canadian population is depressed (according to Stat Canada) and I am surprised that it is only a third. They have a distorted view of Jesus, do not know His teachings and have never read the Bible.

Knowing our Lord intimately makes us cope with any situation because we focus on the final destination of our earthly life; that is the eternal one where we will be facing other more important tasks that do not include our body.

Yet we, on earth, do all for the body and almost nothing for our spirit. We have to ask before we put the body to rest at night what is that which we have done to enrich our spirit in the human day of existence.

And this is why I have MAD RESPECT for John!  

And this is just a tiny, eeny weenie taste of The Walking Encyclopaedia and why he facilitates Bible Study.

I hope to share more of his wisdom with you…

God Love You All ♥ 


Our Youth Refute!

I am Quite Blessed to have been able, throughout my Life, to work with Youth.

God works Beautifully through Our Kids!  Whether they are Newborns, Toddlers, Tweens or Teens…His Works Shine ever More Brightly through them! 

Perhaps due to their innocence…their Passion…their unwavering Strength…whatever it is, they never, ever, cease to amaze me…teach me…and Humble Me with their Gifts!

One cannot help but to see His Face in them…

I want to share with you all this video that 9th Grade Youth created in response to the Viral Video, Spiritual but not Religious…I do not think a link to it is needed, we all know which one it is…

I will, however, provide a link to the STJW Youth Ministry’s video…

Hey it’s My Blog ;)

And I provide it One, because as I said it IS My Blog.

Two, I am Biased!  I Love these Kids ♥

Three, these kids may not go viral, but they deserve to be heard!

Four, I am GOSH-DARNED PROUD OF THEM!!!

Five, If I share it here, perhaps you can share it elsewhere

Six, if it is shared, perhaps we can all gain a bit of Strength and Inspiration to Defend and Know Our Faith!

Seven…Because I WANT TO!!

Okay, the repetition of because I said so I KNOW takes away from the Valid Reasons…but it’s just so fun to type that!  It’s not like one can use that argument with any real usefulness with the kids now, can we?

But seriously, I do hope that this video serves as an Inspiration to you. 

That it Inspires you to Learn More about Our Faith.  That it Strengthens you with Hope! Many say our Youth are lazy, that they do not possess the same Faith or Obedience as once was…Well, this is here to lay all those Lies to Rest!!

Our Youth are STRONG, COURAGEOUS and Full of Loving Faith!!!

Enjoy and Share…


Thought I’d Share…

A little girl went to her bedroom and pulled a glass jam jar
from its hiding place in the closet.

 She poured the change out on the floor and counted it carefully.
Three
times, even.. The total had to be exactly perfect.. No chance here for mistakes.

 Carefully placing the coins back in the jar and twisting on the cap,
she
slipped out the back door and made her way 6 blocks to Rexall’s Drug Store
with
the big red Indian Chief sign above the door.

She waited patiently for the pharmacist to give her some attention,
but he was too busy at this moment.
Tess twisted her feet to make a scuffing noise.
Nothing.
She cleared her throat
with the most disgusting sound she could muster.
No good.
Finally she took a
quarter from her jar and banged it on the glass counter.
That did it!

 ‘And what do you want?’ the pharmacist asked in an annoyed tone of voice.
I’m talking to my brother from Chicago whom I haven’t seen in ages,’
he said without waiting for a reply to his questio
n.‘Well, I want to talk to you about my brother,’
Tess answered back in the same annoyed tone.
‘He’s
really, really sick….and I want to buy a miracle.’

‘I beg your pardon?’ said the pharmacist.

‘His name is Andrew and he has something bad growing inside his head
and my Daddy says only a miracle can save him now.

So how much does a miracle cost?’

‘We don’t sell miracles here, little girl. I’m sorry but I can’t help you,’
the pharmacist said, softening a little. 

 ‘Listen, I have the money to pay for it.
If it isn’t enough, I will get
the rest.
Just tell me how much it costs.’

The pharmacist’s brother was a well dressed man.
He stooped down and asked the little girl,
‘What kind of a
miracle does your brother need?’

‘ I don’t know,’ Tess replied with her eyes welling up.
I just know he’s really sick and Mommy says he needs an
operation.
But my Daddy can’t pay for it, so I want to use my money..’ 

 ‘How much do you have?’ asked the man from Chicago .

‘One dollar and eleven cents,’ Tess answered barely audible.
‘And it’s all the money I have, but I can get some more if I need to.’

‘Well, what a coincidence,’ smiled the man.
‘A dollar and eleven cents—the exact price of a miracle for little brothers.’

He took her money in one hand and with the other hand he grasped her mitten
and said
‘Take me to where you live.
I want to see your brother and meet your parents.
Let’s see if I have the miracle you need.’

That well-dressed man was Dr. Carlton Armstrong,
a surgeon,
specializing in neuro-surgery.

The operation was completed free of charge
and it
wasn’t long until Andrew was home again and doing well.

Mom and Dad were happily talking about the chain of events
that had led them to this place. 

‘That surgery,’ her Mom whispered.‘was a real miracle.
I wonder how much it would have cost?’

Tess smiled. She knew exactly how much a miracle cost….
one dollar and eleven cents…
plus the faith of a little child. 

In our lives, we never know how many miracles we will need.
A miracle is not the suspension of natural law,
but the operation of a higher law.

 I know you’ll keep the ball moving!
Here it goes. Throw it back to someone who means something to you!
A ball is a circle, no beginning, no end.

It keeps us together like our Circle of Friends.

But the treasure inside for you to see
is
the treasure of friendship you’ve granted to me.

Today I pass the friendship ball to you. Pass it on to someone who is a friend to you.

MY OATH TO YOU…
When you are sad…..I will dry your tears.
When you are scared…..I will comfort your fears.
When you are worried……I will give you hope.
When you are confused…..I will help you cope.
And when you are lost…and can’t see the light,
I shall be your beacon…shining ever so bright.
This is my oath…..I pledge till the end.
Why you may ask?….Because you’re my friend. 


Signed: GOD


I am Not the Only One…

So I have a Huge Confession to make…

When I found out that one of our Local Public Schools in York Region was allowing Prayer on Fridays for the Muslim Children, I was Livid!

Society keeps secularizing Christmas, Schools are taking God out of the Pledge of Allegiance, you don’t even HAVE TO say the Pledge of Allegiance! And so many more examples of NO PRAYER, No GOD, and yet here, in my own Back Yard a PUBLIC, SECULAR INSTITUTION was allowing and encouraging Prayer.

Though I understood the Why…I found it and still do find it Un-Just, yes, UNFAIR (I know, the World isn’t fair, but still)!  Thus, I opposed it, adamantly.

Lo and Behold!  I am not the only one!

After reading this article, I selfishly and pridefully feel validated, but more than that, I can Empathize…

There are so many “Christians” and “Christian Interpretations” of God and His Word that if someone (I don’t want to point any fingers here) were to come into my Childrens’ schools and start taking about the 144,000 that will be saved, or how the Rapture was not on May 21st but WILL BE on October 21st…and oh so many more examples.

Please do take the time and read this article…I for one am Supporting Ron Banerjee, of the Canadian Hindu Advocacy.  Perhaps for my own Selfish Reasons too…but also because I CAN Truly Empathize…

How about You??

Here’s the Article to which I am referring from Sun TV by Tom Godfrey, released on Monday.

Another Article from City News.

Search and you’ll find many more…


All Quiet on the Western Front

As many of you have read, this Blog (150 in total) was selected from a total of 750 that were submitted to the Vatican to attend a meeting for Authors of various Blogs Worldwide.

Unfortunately due to financial and other constraints, I was unable to accompany my Wife to Rome.

The Girls and myself are adjusting to Life without Mommy…It is only for a week. 

Day 1 and so far, All Quiet on the Western Front….Nothing to Report.

I remember my Wife and I being so excited when we would get 15 hits a day.  After only a Year, From The Pews now averages over 200 + Hits a day.  That number just keeps growing.

As Catholics, the majority of Us don’t evangelize very much if at all.  Whether it be the scandals, the Cafeteria Catholic (Easter and Christmas Catholics) or just the lukewarm attitude towards God, We don’t just don’t have the Zeal, the Fire we should.

Recently the Toronto Sun ran an Article (Click Here Read) titled “The God Squad” about 3 Catholic, Italian Priests.  

“The GodFathers” as the article called them.  It doesn’t get any more stereotypical than that.  If you read the story the Author obviously does not believe in God or in the least has many doubts about their own beliefs. 

Has it gotten so bad with all the scandals in the Church that we’ll even settle for this type of “publicity” ?

It’s such a shame that None of the Priests were wearing their collars in the photos (were they embarassed ?).  “The Godfathers” title pretty much speaks for itself.  Something is wrong when this type of “publicity” is printed without much protest. 

So as the Beatification of John Paul II and the Meeting of Bloggers approaches,  We can all hope and pray that We as a Church, can learn and move forward to Evangelize and portray our Faith in a truthful and positive light.

We can Pray that we don’t lose faith or become disillusioned like Paul Bäumer did in Erich Maria Remarque’s Novel “Im Westen nichts Neues” (All Quiet on the Western Front). 

Spreading God’s Word will be a Battle.  The path to the Truth is Narrow and Harrowing.  There are so many obstacles and dangers standing in the way.  It’s so easy to give up, walk away and give in to the temptation around us.

So I ask all of Our Readers to Pray for My Wife, the other Bloggers and the Church Officials attending the meeting. 

Pray that they come back with the Wisdom, Vision and Courage to Tell Everyone about Jesus’s Teachings.


Canada Day

Here are a few things that I have Learned over the past few years about Canada:

July 1st, Canada Day, marks the anniversary of the Canadian Confederation in 1867 and the birth of Canada as a nation.

It wasn’t until 1965 that Canada had her own flag.  The Canadian red and white maple leaf flag is officially called The National Flag of Canada. The Canadian flag shows a stylized red maple leaf with 11 points on a white background, with red borders down each side. The Canadian flag is twice as long as it is wide. The white square containing the red maple leaf is the same width as the flag.  The red and white used in the National Flag of Canada were proclaimed the official colours of Canada in 1921 by King George V. Although the maple leaf did not have official status as an emblem of Canada until the proclamation of the national flag in 1965, it had historically been used as a Canadian symbol, and was used in 1860 in decorations for the visit of the Prince of Wales to Canada. The 11 points on the maple leaf have no special significance.  The suggestion for a red and white single maple leaf design for the Canadian flag came from George Stanley, a professor at Royal Military College in Kingston, Ontario.  In his speech at the national flag inauguration ceremony, Prime Minister Lester Pearson said:

“Under this Flag may our youth find new inspiration for loyalty to Canada; for a patriotism based not on any mean or narrow nationalism, but on the deep and equal pride that all Canadians will feel for every part of this good land.”

“O Canada” was proclaimed Canada’s national anthem on July 1, 1980, 100 years after it was first sung on June 24, 1880. The music was composed by Calixa Lavallée, a well-known composer; French lyrics to accompany the music were written by Sir Adolphe-Basile Routhier. The song gained steadily in popularity. Many English versions have appeared over the years. The version on which the official English lyrics are based was written in 1908 by Mr. Justice Robert Stanley Weir. The official English version includes changes recommended in 1968 by a Special Joint Committee of the Senate and House of Commons. The French lyrics remain unaltered.  These are the “Official” English Lyrics:

O Canada!
Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all thy sons command.

With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North strong and free!

From far and wide,
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

God keep our land glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

And since Canada IS a Biligual country, here they are in French, the language that the Anthem was originally written in:

Ô Canada!

O Canada! Terre de nos aïeux,
Ton front est ceint de fleurons glorieux!

Car ton bras sait porter l’épée,
Il sait porter la croix!

Ton histoire est une épopée
Des plus brillants exploits.

Et ta valeur, de foi trempée,
Protégera nos foyers et nos droits.

Protégera nos foyers et nos droits. 

The origin of the name “Canada” comes from the expedition of explorer Jacques Cartier up the St. Lawrence River in 1535. The Iroquois pointing out the route to the village of Stadacona, the future site of Quebec City, used the word “kanata,” the Huron-Iroquois word for village. Jacques Cartier used the word Canada to refer to both the settlement of Stadacona and the land surrounding it subject to Chief Donnacona.

By 1547, maps were showing the name Canada applied to everything north of the St. Lawrence River. The St. Lawrence River was called the “rivière du Canada” by Cartier, and the name stuck until the 1600s.

In the 1600s, the name Canada was often used loosely to refer to New France, and as land opened up to the west and south in the 1700s, the name Canada was applied to what is now the American midwest and as far south as present day Louisiana. But it was not official.

In 1791, the Constitutional Act or Canada Act divided the Province of Quebec into two – the colonies of Upper Canada and Lower Canada. In 1841, the two colonies were united again, this time as the Province of Canada.

At Confederation in 1867, the British North America Act officially joined the Province of Canada (Quebec and Ontario) with Nova Scotia and New Brunswick to become “one Dominion under the name of Canada.”

HAPPY CANADA DAY!!!

Thanks to  Susan Munroe from About.com for all of the Info.