Saturday, April 28, 2012

Thursday, April 26, 2012


In 33 days we will be venturing on another pilgrimage to Medjugorje.
While the planning and the praying and the fasting have been ongoing it's this time when things really start to get exciting.
When I made my first pilgrimage I ended up completing St. Louis de Montfort's 33 day Consecration to the Blessed Virgin Mary sitting at the base of Mt. Krizevac (Cross Mountain).
Just a short time ago, my brother emailed me reminding me that today is day '33'.
So it begins.

I was liturgically raised on folk Masses and religious education with crepe paper.  I never heard of St. Louis de Montfort until years later in seminary and even then such devotional focus was not encouraged.  I hear things have changed and I hope there is a healthy balance.

There is a power in consecrating oneself.
Prayers of consecration really are about surrender and commitment.  
When the Eucharist is consecrated--it is about Christ's surrender to His Father's will and His commitment to us.

My lovely wife decided a few months back that we would enshrine our home to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Wouldn't you know it--an old classmate and brother priest shared that he recently enshrined a few homes in his diocese.  When he arrived my wife, the perfect sacristan, had the prayers, the pictures, and the candles all ready
So it was a weekend of prayer and feasting.
(and of course consecrating)
Try it.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Yesterday morning, I am in the attic, cutting wires and struggling with removing a bathroom exhaust fan that wouldn't budge.
My father enters stage right and hollers...

father:  Why are you pounding the hallway light thru the ceiling?
me (from attic):  Hallway light??
father:  What?
me: (louder) Hallway light?
father: Yep, the hallway light.  It's hanging from the ceiling.

a few minutes later
wife:  call an electrician.

I have been in the practice of asking St. Joseph to help me out when I begin projects.
My lovely wife reminded me that he was a carpenter not an electrician.

Admitting that I need help is not my strongest area.
Doesn't this happen in the spiritual life?

I suggested that we wait to call the electrician until we have a little more money.  I thought we could make do.  After all not all the power is out, just the power to the bathroom and hallway and attic.

In the spiritual life we lose power and, if we aren't careful we learn to function without it.
When a soul begins to lose its clear connection to God, it begins to make excuses.
When a soul begins to cut itself from the power of the sacraments and healthy community--light is lost.

Careful what lines you cut.

Monday, April 16, 2012



That is the 'hashtag' used in the twitter world by a group of collegians readying themselves for an upcoming pilgrimage to Medjugorje.
It has been a long time coming.  For the past four years they have been nurtured in the 'five stones' of Prayer, Confession, Reconciliation, Eucharist, and Scripture.
Now, in forty days they will begin their pilgrimage to a holy place where the Queen of Peace first appeared to youth.
If you get a chance today--pray for them.

Recently my lovely wife and I chaperoned a high school band trip to Walt Disney World. 
Never Again.
The days were filled with potential blog material; Church of Disney, Adolescent Behavior (parents included),  Rules Really Don't Apply to Me, ABC's of Chaperoning, Life on a Bus, Fried Food Vouchers, and Falling Asleep on a Park Bench in Epcot.  Suffice it to say it was 92 degrees, hot, and Disney closed two parks due to capacity.

In the midst of Holy Week I began to wonder if Jesus really even made a dent in our humanity.
There I was at the 'happiest place on earth' falling into despair and wondering if we as parents were  fighting a losing battle. 

You knew it wouldn't take long for me to use the word 'battle' right?  After all this is Praylium.

There is a battle for your soul.
Know what frightens me the most?  The concentrated battle for the souls of our youth.
At least in the world of Disney evil is usually pretty clear.  There is always a good guy and a bad buy.
But in our world we have the prince of lies confusing and contorting his will into a well packaged illusion of truth--baiting us, drawing us deeper into his darkness.

We are still in Easter-- the celebration of Christ conquering Satan.  
And, not only did he break the chains of death but his body rose from the dead.  His Body--the Body of Christ--the Body of Christ broken for you is present as the Holy Eucharist!

See how much He loves you?