- The amazing story of the 13 becoming Catholic!
- Our marriage stories - "The world needs LIGHTS!"
- John's cancer stories
- Now the stories of John's 4 sisters...Ruth, Nancy, Maria, and Susan/Little Sister Hallel!
- Susan Angela Agnes/Little Sister Hallel - the story of a Call
- The story of little Lamb - grandson Patrick
Friday, September 30, 2011
Out to see the calves in the late day sun - made their hairy ears look really fluffy and wooly... cute alert. Mary named this one Wooly Bear.
Found a bouquet of soybeans in the middle of the yard... now in a vase on the table. We look at it and say a prayer for safety and good bountiful harvest! Jesus, we trust in you!
Pat made me laugh out loud with delight this morning, as we quickly shared morning prayer before he headed out to start combining beans! He has been praying for two friends of Nancy's, who have both had miscarriages... just about the time that he started praying for them... they both got pregnant and are now 4 months and 3 months along! So this morning he took his prayer to a whole new and super cute level by praying for "Happy moms with happy babies." Pat Verly
That prayer led me on a search this morning through my pictures... and this one taken the other night, after Mary and I returned from our adventure in the pasture... it is of her with her mom, and the next day her mom and dad heard the heartbeat of her little brother or sister for the first time! Such a wonderful and exciting sound is that! About the best sound that we hear as parents, and that immediate bond of love and caring is there!
My two granddaughters are happy girls, and well trained by grandma to smile for me... but those smiles are genuine ones of happiness and contentment... their lives are filled with life and love!
There is so much love to pass around, and to share when you are raised... happy moms with happy babies! Little Therese has been so loving to her brother, and now with baby Gus!
Loving siblings come from loving parents...
It is such a gift to have happy and loving grandchildren... to share our wonderful life on the farm together... to share foremost our faith one with the other... and more than that to be taught by them... what Christ meant when he told us, that we need to have the faith of little children! see Mark 10:15 and Luke 18:17
Peaceful beautiful times that are deep in our hearts, souls, and minds, and cherished in that Holy place of family, faith and farm!
Mary was playing with grandma... putting willow leaves in my hair! The delights of an end of the day adventures, in the peaceful beautiful fall countryside with God and his amazing gift in nature!
Mary realizes that the heifers... led by her special Snowball... are now following her down the cow path to the other end of the pasture. A joyful romp!
Sharing a quick breakfast before heading out to begin our first day of harvesting the beans... grandpa looked at a picture of Davey, and spoke with great love about his sweet loving and active attitude towards life..."I grandpa's helper!" grandpa said with deep love and joy! We both are pondering how life would be not quite as bright without little Dave, and everyone of our grandkids, in it! For a lot of couples Dave wouldn't be here... not just because he is the third child, and many couples stop at 2, but because Ruth was told by her doctor, here in town, that she should have no more children, after she ruptured her uterus after her second... Gettting a second opinion, waiting for good healing of her incision, and lots of prayer... now little light of the world - David Lawrence- is here and a wonderful joyful much loved 3year old, who loves to go to preschool - holding an owl that he made there on the first day!
So much love to share! Life is a gift, and Davey is the poster child for that... he loves his earthly mommy and his spiritual mommy... he knows her well, as she protected him and cared for him from the beginning in the womb! Now her loving care and arms are surrounding his new brother or sister in the womb of Ruthie!
Another light to fill our lives, and the world with new light!
Therese sees her kitty for the first time in two months! They spent the long winter together, and they seem happy to see each other again. So many little things in life remind us that we are loved and special!
Happiness in photo form...
Jesus, thank you for happy moms and happy babies! Thank you for the children that are wanted, and loved from the moment of conception! Thank you for the loving faithfilled homes - domestic Churches - that these little ones have been brought into! Thank you for parents that give them life, and love from the very first moment of their being! Jesus along with your Mother of Heaven and Earth and St Joseph... lead those that are pregnant to love the life within them and nurture and protect it! Jesus, we love you with our lives and trust in you! Amen and Halleluia!
"God has chosen the foolish things of this world to shame the wise, the weak things of this world to shame the mighty..." St Paul writes in I Corinthians 1:27 'Since the world did not have the wisdom to recognize God through the orderliness, diversity , and constancy of his creatures, God saw fit to save those who believed through the foolishness of the Gospel message. He accomplished this neither through the persuasive words of worldly wisdom nor through clever eloquence, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its potency...God acccomplished this rather through the display of power and the Spirit, so that faith of believers might rest in the power of God and not in the wisdom of men."
St Jerome (419) was a Scripture scholar. St Jerome, pray for us on this your feast day!
Thursday, September 29, 2011
Now I borrowed some pictures from Nancy's blog - http://thegreatgusadventure.blogspot.com/... She had put some on there of the 3 traveling little sisters from Kansas City meeting Gus for the first time last weekend! I was in Kansas City with the little sisters...the night-day that Gus came into the world 2 weeks early, on May 25th. They were thrilled to be in the "family sharing" of our family... welcoming the birth of our newest grandson, as I was there getting updates hourly, and then he was here! We rejoiced and cried together, and as we all shared last night, at the gathering with the Bishop of parents of women religious in the diocese... our families have grown larger with the addition of the communities that our daughters have entered! To me this is a cherished "family picture" as my little sister daugthers meet little Gus for the first time!
A special family portrait to be cherished, and kept.... for our family has been allowed to share love and life one with the other!
It will be a wonderful gift for Augustine to have the community of the Lamb in his life! I am overjoyed that my grandkids have the exposure to these amazing men and women... that follow Him in a life of poverty, chastity and obedience! Gus will probably be totally unaware that he has a special gift of many praying for him, and involved in his life of faith... He will think that all little kids, teenage kids, and young adults have almost 200 little sisters and brothers in their lives, and that they all go to France or Kansas City to see their aunt, and many other family members dressed in blue, and smiling, and hugging with great JOY! He will be like his older cousin, 3 year old Therese, who is already thinking about being Sr Maria! Yes, Augustine, you need to know that religious life is a wonderful call to consider, and when you are 3 is a good place to start thinking and praying along with your parents, grandparents, and family very large...many dressed in blue!
Thank you, Lord, for the gift of your faith journey, that lies ahead for all of us! We pick up our cross and follow after you..."At the end of life the door to eternity stands open: no one can pass through unless he carries a cross." Blessed John XXIII How's that for a thought? Wow! Jesus, allow us to embrace our Most Cherished Cross!
So many things to learn about for this new 4 month old little one! Protected and loved by his parents, who will teach him with great joy about his amazing Church, and the mystery of Faith! Today is the feast day of the mysterios and glorious Archangels! "Earth's liturgy joins us to that of the angels in heaven. Not only do we 'make their hymn of praise our own' (Preface), proclaiming that the Lord is holy, but in offering the sacrifice we ask God 'that your angel may take this sacrifice to your altar in heaven.' " (Eucharistic prayer II) That is one place that the angels are so powerful and we feel their presence around us - at mass! When we say the "Holy, Holy" that is so with the Angels!
Gus with his wonderful Godfather, Paul! So blessed are you, little boy, to have so much love, and good direction in the faith surrounding you!
The glorious mysteries of our faith! Heaven is our goal and it will be out of this world! Jesus, we trust in you!
You, little sweet Augustine, are a gift that never stops giving... and the mystery of that is to be played out in your journey called life and LOVE! Mary looked into the eyes of her son, Jesus Christ... knowing that He was God, and that He had sent St Gabriel, the Archangel to her from heaven to ask her to do this - allow God to enter the world through her immaculate womb... she said "Yes!" We learn from her in saying "Yes!" to all that He asks of us as we follow after Him carrying our cross - our Most Cherished Cross!
Blessed Mother... Your Son gave us the command to take you into our homes - as you stood at the foot of the cross, and watched God die a brutal death for our sins. May your presence bring the healing and comfort that so many hurting families need from your spiritual motherhood. We love you, and honor you, and with the angels and archangels sing praise to Father, Son and the Holy Spirit! Teach us how to say "yes." May we embrace our Most Cherished Cross and wounded... we will not cease to love! "If you live your life out of love, it's so much easier to do the difficult things that come with it." Patrick Verly
Lord Jesus, so many blessings surround us and remind us of your beauty... the smiles and delight of the little ones... as they gaze out at the mystery of the world around them with innocence and joy! Brought up in the Faith, and surrounded by many prayers they grow, and experience love and life! Jesus and Mary, we with the angels and saints worship and adore you now and forever! Jesus, we trust in you! Amen and Halleluia
"We are to honor the angels because it is they who bear our souls up to heaven, and this they do in three ways. The first is by preparing the way, so we read in Malachi: 'Behold I send my angel, who will prepare the way before your face.' The second is by conveying the souls to heaven along the prepared way; so Exodus: 'Behold I will send an angel, who shall go before you and keep you in your journey, and bring you into the land which I promised to your fathers.' The third is by putting the souls in their place in heaven; so Luke: 'It came to pass that the beggar died and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom.' "
Blessed Jacobus de Vagarine (1298)
Today in the Gospel Jesus speaks to us..."Amen, amen, I say to you, you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man." John 1: 47-51 There is an exciting life ahead of you, Augustine!
Wednesday, September 28, 2011
I thought that it was pretty cool to have little Therese - little T with her namesake.. the humble yet amazing St Therese of Lisseux. For a girl of 3, she has already many wonderful qualities of her patron saint - she is so loving, and giving, and does many "small things with great love! " So wonderful to have such a great patron saint to live up to. You can tell from her smile, and brightly lit eyes... that she knows in a very profound way that St Therese is someone pretty great, and out of this world amazing! Bless-bless, Barb
My granddaughter, Mary, is a kindergartener at the same Catholic School that her mother attended and her grandfather, and even great grandmother attended. Kindergarten is different for the grandkids... they go for a full day of school now! So my little Mary is gone, and I felt a sense of sadness... I had always had her very much in my daily life, as I was her babysitter when her mom went back to work half time at the hospital from when she was 12 weeks until her baby brother, David, came along 2 years later.
We have shared many adventures on the farm over the last 5 years, and in many ways she is a lot like me! We love to paint together and a lot of her style in clothing and accessories comes from me. We also share some favorite books that we have read hundreds of times! So when, out of the blue, I was offered an evening with Mary... it was a beautiful gift!
Such a beautiful evening, and the dogs are eating some bites of apple... just off the tree... after they each had some green beans off the plants in the garden! Yes, we do feed them dog food, but they have realized that good fresh food that we grow and pick and eat are yummy and juicy and sweet! Mary has always loved her animals, and so we made a decision to go about 10 miles away to see her special heifer, Snowball!
After we got under and over the electric fence... we followed the creek down the cow path - a regular trail that the cows make from walking back and forth following the one ahead of them. The young heifers - they will have their first calf this winter or spring -were finally spotted way back by some trees.
The early evening lighting was very beautiful and Mary headed straight for them... looking for the white face of her special Snowball... hence the name given her by Mary two years before when she was brought to their farm to "break" and get ready for some other 4Hers to show at the county and State Fair. Ever since then Snowball has been her special friend!
Carried away with the sunlight paintbrush!
Mary had brought along a small pail of "cow" apples... those that have fallen off the tree, as nothing goes to waste on the farm!
With an apple outstretched in her hand... slowly Mary walks towards Snowball.
Soon Snowball and her friends, including Banana, are crunching on the 8 sweet and juicy apples that Mary has brought for them!
Life is good and this is a great adventure out on a glorious evening hanging out with friends and sharing? a meal... Mary and Grandma brought grapes and water to have for our snack/picnic out in the willow tree.
Snowball is happy to see Mary and remembers how Mary likes to pat her head and rub her neck... they are friends and remember each other ever time, even if it has been many weeks apart... Snowball eating grass in the pasture all summer and Mary with her family and now a Catholic schoolgirl! They can still share time together...
We go over to have our snack and enjoy the evening in the willow trees... Snowball follows Mary over there too! Too cute for words, and so awe inspiring to have this kind of give and take with a creature of God!
Mary and I found a natural seat on the low branches of the willow... Mary looks up to see Snowball coming to see her through the branches that the cows use to itch themselves on... There is a peace and calm about how a girl and a heifer reach out to each other, and gently touch and are touched. The smile of Mary's face shows her love and enjoyment of this special time together. She has no idea that this is anything but normal everday stuff... really for her to have a cow friend is quite out of the ordinary!
For Mary and grandma this was a sacred moment in which we are so close to God through nature and His creation. We don't speak of it, but are very touched and moved and respectful of this time of sharing! Thank you, Jesus!
Pat asked me how many pictures that I took... 150? He guessed high - I took more like 115, but how can you stop taking them with a scene like this before your eyes and camera lens! A beautiful sweet little farmgirl with her special applefilled friend out on a beautiful golden glowing fall evening!
Sweet Jesus, I am overjoyed at the gift of this time with my precious Mary and her friend! She took grandma along on a most wonderful glorious adventure. I am filled with wonder and awe at the gift that LIFE is in all forms and shapes. We are so blessed to have our lives on the farm to share with family and friends... may be never take it for granted. Thank you for this special life that we have been gifted with. Times are not always easy, but we take the task that you have given us to care for the land and to feed the world very seriously. Give us the strength and wisdom to love and follow you, even when it is hard. Be with the farmers as harvest is drawing near, and as Simon said at his birthday - "I prayed for safety on the farm!" Jesus, we trust in you! Amen and Halleluia
"For God, the living God, I thirst.
Like dew upon the fleece come down,
Like rain upon the desert sand,
Like light into a darkened room.
As parched earth breaks for need of rain
So my heart breaks but not in vain.
When wilt thou on my vision burst?
For thee, my living God, I thirst."
The hymn from morning prayer... see http://www.magnificat.com/