Sunday, June 4, 2017

The Spirit afire!!!!

Time with family and our dear expanded family - The Community of the Lamb!  A large celebration as the Little Brothers prepare to build their little Monastery devoted to Mary.  The Vigil of Pentecost and the Spirit was alive and celebrated!
Archbishop spoke of how first the Little Sisters and the Holy Spirit surprised him by their ability to raise the funds to build their little Monastery, and now these few years later the Little Brothers have been able to surprise him by now raising the funds they need to go forth and put down their roots in the heart of our country! 

As parents of a little Sister we are eternally grateful that Archbishop Naumann listened to the Holy Spirit and invited them to the U.S. to start their first foundation here!  It allowed Hallel to say "yes" to Jesus her spouse beckoning her to be His in this radical way!  She discerned mightily and with tears after meeting and falling in love with The Community of the Lamb while studying in Rome.  Then the official word of them coming to the U.S. and in front of Our Lady of Guadalupe altar in the chapel she had just helped them build in the old Belgian rectory in the heart a poor neighborhood in KC, Kansas... she told us that she would be joining them and become His spouse.
Remembering Hallel's story of her call by Jesus and how returning from her week at Schoenstatt camp the summer she was about Mary's age (11) that she shared that she thought that she would be a sister.  The powerful moment caught me square in the heart as the Holy Spirit seemed to fill our car, and I pulled into a grain elevator in the small town we were passing through as the tears blinded me!   "You have a little sister because you discerned a call." I was enlightened on a retreat recently by a Benedictine sister.  Yes!  I certainly encouraged my girls to spend time with Sisters in habits and to consider a call as a wonderful option. 

My feelings are especially strong today as Mary was dropped off for her first experience of Schoenstatt Camp.  My thoughts are strongly with her as she prays each day in the chapel her rosary.  The chapel is now air conditioned... when the girls attended 25 years ago they have crazy stories of their knees slipping in the sweat on the kneelers.  Makes for lots of laughs now when the girls reminisce about their camps.  The games they played... capture the flag, and played with the water hose, and then the play they would put on for the parents when we would come to pick them up.  Ruth shared a funny family story of when we came to pick her up and John (about 3 years old) told her as soon as he saw her that her pet kitten had been flattened like a pancake when dad set a bale on it.  "Blacko pancake!"  "I cried through the whole play and tired to smile through my tears." recalls Ruth. 
Mary the oldest of our granddaughters, and big sister to Joy, our youngest granddaughter.  She has already shared that she knows that religious life would be an amazing option and is allowing Jesus to show her his amazing plan for her alone!
I know that her younger cousins and sisters look up to Mary, who is humble and sweet and loves animals and the farm. 

John and I got to talk to her as Ruth and Mary got close to Sleepy Eye last night.  We both asked her to pray for us, and that fills me with a lot of happiness to recall how now Mary will be able to have her Schoenstatt experience... all her own, and I am looking forward to hearing her stories and witnessing her JOY!  My girls loved their weeks and some would not want to come home afterwards.
Focusing in on Mary today, with many thoughts and prayers!
I found this cute one of our special little Evangeline Mary... I have heard that she is crawling all around now.  How she reminds me of my babies, and of me when I was a babe in arms!
Archbishop assisted by Little Brother Clement... blessing the ground on which the Little Monastery will be built and us with Holy Water!  It truly reminded us of our big wonderful extended family we have now through the Community!
Wonderful tents filled with tables and chairs and wonderful food from around the world.  Embracing the world as they dig their shovels in for the groundbreaking.  How we rejoice to know that they are putting more roots down into the heart of our country, which needs so much of their work through The Holy Spirit!  Come Holy Fire of the Holy Spirit and fill us with His LOVE and Truth!
Godfather and Goddaughter sharing this momentous occasion in the humid heat of KC.
A sweet soft portrait taken by her Godfather, Uncle John, as he bonded with her on our short visit there!  "I waited for her tears to turn into smiles for me."  She responded to him with laughter and love. 
A study of red for Pentecost Sunday! 
Adorable and so great to have our wonderful time at their pool in hot KC!
The kids said the best part was the pool, where we enjoyed good times in all our spare time while there. 

Lord, we love you and are filled with wonder and awe at all that you give us with each new day.  The beauty of coming together as family by our Community of the Lamb!   Come Holy Spirit and heal the wounds that hurt and lame us.  May we spread the fire of The Spirit!  Jesus, we trust in you.  Bless-bless, Barb
Matching girls on the steps...
Home to run on the new porch!
They already had their first meal out there... so it begins!
Rose went out to watch for heat after some time on the porch checking it out.  I predict many wonderful family meals out here and Pat will say; "now I see that this was all a good thing."    Rose reported to grandpa; "I saw one with a white face jumping, and its body was all black."  Those white faces make them stand out and easy to spot for a 5 year old farm girl.
Saying goodbye to cousins and Aunt and Uncle and The Community til next time.  The trip seemed shorter going home said the kids, but they slept half of the way...
Rose with roses in KC
One of my rare pictures of soon to be 3 year old Dominic...
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Nancy's beautiful reminder of how our hour at mass is small but wonderful in our lives!
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