Monday, March 6, 2017

"Be holy, for I, the Lord, your God, am holy." Leviticus 19 ... Dad's 92nd birthday!

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My dad and brother, Dan, sharing a birthday today! So thankful to have these wonderful men in my life!  Of course, love and devotion to my wonderful dad goes deeper than I can express other than to share the page I devoted to his leading the 13 of us into the Catholic Church 45 years ago..  The tears are rolling down my cheeks at the powerful emotions I am filled with!   And Dan... #8 in our family and born on dad's birthday.  A strong man of Faith and Family - we are kindred lovers of our Church in it's entirety!  I am forever blessed to share this journey with them!
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A classic from Dan's wedding day with Deacon Robert on the altar at The Basilica of Mary about 30 years ago.
Open house for dad over the weekend - "come for wine and cake", and a visit with our wonderful parents in their light filled home about 4 hours away from our farm. 

Dad is 92 today and Pat and I had a wonderful visit with him and mom in the midst of our crazy lives yesterday!  It was the first time that Pat has left for 12 hours in the heat of calving, and thankfully all went well thanks to the farm family at home.  It gave us 8 hours together in the car on a beautiful day to pray and talk and listen to Christian music to get us the last hour home.  We had special time to visit and learn at the feet of my father.  How he loves to share his "theology" and insights, and I could eat it with a fork and knife!   Real food!
How I cherish these warm close visits filled with peace and how my heart rejoices to have both my parents in better health again and sharp in their minds, hearts and Spirits!  On the trip I worked on a card for my dad and wanted to check out the readings for today... they certainly did not disappoint!  The words in the first reading seem to be what my dad has always clung to in his listening to the Holy Spirit and directing us in the ways of The Truth into The Church! 
"Be holy, for I,  the Lord, your God, am holy."  Dad has shared that while he was on guard/watch in Marseille, France that he heard the call to the ministry.  Went to Kalamazoo college, met mom, entered seminary in Boston, was a Baptist and Presbyterian minister, working with alcoholics, Baptized in the Holy Spirit, The Holy Spirit spoke to him in Isaiah 55:1-2 while on an Ignation retreat - join the Catholic Church... "Yes!"  Then a Permanent Deacon in the first class in the Arch Diocese!  Too amazing for words! 

So when I got to the Gospel as we rolled down the road... It was so fitting for my dad!  Matthew 25!!!

I had to write these words all in his card..."Come, you who are blessed by my Father.  Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.  For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked you clothed me, , ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me."  I have seen him live these out for us in so many ways!  He is such a model to me on how to live out this Gospel, and there is also our wonderful Community of The Lamb modeling the Gospel for me!  Such a gift!
What a great gift that they still have each other and can be in their own home managing and leaning on each other as "old age is a shipwreck!" a quote of my mother's which I am starting to experience first hand.
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Dad and Dan sharing the day and so much more!  Dan is very good to his aging dad, and has a home away from home just blocks away from him, and is always willing to lovingly help in their needs!  Thanks, Dan!
The cuteness in my kitchen this morning... a farm hat put on her head by her beloved grandpa Pat!  "She gets cuter every day."  Yes!

Lord, how did I get so blessed to have my family?  I ponder this in tears welling up as I recall all that you have done for us!  Wow!  What an amazing spiritual Journey, and then to find my Most Cherished Cross, Patrick Verly, and he too listens to the Word of God/The Holy Spirit in his life!
I am so humbled and unworthy of your great kindness and goodness all around me!  Thank you for our family with which we share our Faith and our Farm.  Jesus, hold my dad and brother close to your heart burning with love for them. Jesus, we trust in you.  Amen
How she loves her grandpa's big arms...  This brings me back to our nest years and how he always loved to hold the babies at mass!  The Holy Spirit spoke to us at our engagement encounter... "Be open to LIFE and raise them as LIGHTS to the world!"  Bless-bless, Barbara Luke
Mass with family is the best!  So cherishing having these months with Maria!  We are set to do some personal sharing for Lent..."I would like to do the stations, maybe one at a time and share how they speak to us."  Wow!  I know that The Stations took great meaning for he while she discerned her call to religious life with The Poor Clares 13 years ago.  She made me some that are in the grove to this day!  So excited and blessed, as my children take me deeper in my faith!  Nothing better!
Mission week with Steve Angrisano... so powerful!  He shared about his meeting St John Paul in 1999 in St Louis... I wish I could find the quote he ended with about the St Louis arch... I had tears, of course, as he is my total hero!  I will use this quote as it is amazing too...
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Love to have him in heaven now working for The Church!
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She is with me, and I am so blessed by her intercession, motherly caring and taking me to her Son!
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"Behold the Lamb of God!"
Danielle Rose - The Saint that is just me
Peter Mayer - holy now

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