I can't believe that the time has arrived. After years of planning, it will soon be time to board the plane and head off to Spain. I am not positive but it sounds like this year's World Youth Day may be one of the most attended.
Please pray for the hundreds of thousands (if not a million or two) pilgrims who will join Pope Benedict as we celebrate our Catholic faith and see the graces of so many cultures. World Youth Day is a symbol of the universality of the Church - that no matter if someone is from the USA or from the Congo or Iraq that, as Catholics, we all share the same faith.
I will try to keep the blog updated from Spain, but I cannot promise anything.
About My Blog...
I can't promise that I will sing you a song (although if I do it might not be out of tune...yes, I am a Beatles fan!) but I can say that I'll share some of my thoughts with you. You may or may not find what I have to say all that interesting for this is just a space where I'm free to be me.
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
|Where has all the time gone???|
That's all I have to say.
While most people are chillin' this summer and taking vacations, I am going non-stop. It's been almost 30 days since I've had the urge, desire, inclination etc., to sit here and write a blog. By the time I get home, I just wanna veg, play a couple of games, read a book and just try not to string two sentences together. Summer always moves into full swing for me the last week of June. I check into Cathedral Camp (our retreat center) for six days and five nights with teenagers and other adult team for annual Christian Leadership Institute. CLI is a wonderful experience and bears many fruits, but it's a long process preparing for it and the days begin at 6AM and end at 12AM (at least for the team).
This year, for the first time, I was able to celebrate my birthday, on my birthday, with my family and boyfriend instead of on CLI which is where I normally spend my birthday. Don't get me wrong, I have some pretty amazing friends on team who always make the day special, but it's nothing like being home. But since then, it's been go, go, go and I just wanna slow, slow, slow down.
Can't wait to take a little R & R, but that's going to be difficult to do since starting in August the go, go, go is going to go a heck of a lot faster. From a regional conference during the first weekend and then leaving for Madrid for World Youth Day the weekend after that, there isn't a lot of time for stuff. Granted, I will be going to Madrid and the group that I'm directly responsible for does not have any minors - they are all 18 - it should be somewhat relaxing. But I won't lie, I don't get the warm and fuzzies about going to Spain...not like I did when I went to Sydney, Australia in 2008 for my first World Youth Day...but that's because Aussie was on my bucket list (and I'd love to go back); Spain however, is not. I'm sure it will be fun, rewarding and faith-filled. We'll just have to wait and see.
UGH! The idea of packing for Madrid in the middle of August - the hottest month of the year - is not the slightest bit appealing whatsoever!!!
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
|Not Enough Sheep!!!!|
Our annual Christian Leadership Institute begins this week and although I love working with the teens, the preparation is E-X-H-A-U-S-T-I-N-G! So you would think I would be able to roll over and get to sleep. Instead, I keep running through all the things still left to do and wonder how in God's name I'm going to get it done. All the tasks in my brain keep colliding with the sheep I'm trying to count. Apparently, they work better than an electric fence. *Sigh* It will just be a long day tomorrow.
I wish I had more to write, but most of it would probably be work related anyway. And well, since that what is keeping me awake, I doubt that would be a good idea.
Guess I should just find a way to get to sleep.
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
It's been a week since my last post. Sometimes I will feel like writing everyday and other days, I just feel like people don't want to hear what I have to say and still others I just don't feel like sharing. But lately, I have had many words, sentences, strings of thoughts swirling in my head...the only problem is where to begin.
Do I write the story idea (or two or three) that seem to be eating away at a little corner of my brain?
Do I comment on the latest elected official and his sex scandal? I mean really! Is it so hard to stay faithful? Just want to point out that it's only the elected men who feel the need to step outside of the marriage and if there are female elected adulterers, well, they are smart enough to not post their pictures on the WORLD wide web! Idiots.
Do I stop writing this blog and actually write my monthly article that is due to my editor on Friday? Better check the archives to see what I've already written so I don't plagiarize myself.
Do I vent my frustration regarding the state of the economy, the lack of jobs, the virtual hopelessness of it all?
What do I write and what do I keep to myself? It's funny because I used to tell my students when in doubt, write what you know. Whether it's fiction, non-fiction or just wanting to get something down on the page. Perhaps when I have a few moments of quiet, I'll get back to that Untitled Novel that is sitting on my hard drive. But I will probably write my 600-700 word article instead.
Then again, it's not due until Friday so I probably won't work on it until tomorrow. Plenty of time.
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
As I write this post, I am sitting at a regional meeting of New England Diocesan Directors of Religious Education (NECDDRE). But this post is not about the meeting itself. When I arrived at the retreat center, I randomly selected my room from the board in the main hall. For once, we didn't have assigned rooms. So being the first to arrive (there is an advantage to being early) I opted for a room on the 3rd floor.
|The Road to Emmaus|
Why the 3rd floor do you ask? Well, in theory one would think that since I'm one of the youngest members of this group that I opted to let the "veterans" have the rooms on the 1st and 2nd floor. Which, I will admit, is only partially true. The real reason is that the room was one of the few with a private bathroom (woo hoo). When I lugged all my stuff up to my room, I laughed at the painting hanging above my bed. It is the same one that hangs in my apartment.
It reflects my favorite Gospel story "The Road to Emmaus" found in Luke 24. This passage and image are near and dear to my heart for many reasons. But my favorite line from the entire passage is Luke 24:32 "Were not our hearts burning within us while he spoke to us on the way and opened the scriptures to us?" To me, this line speaks to how all Christians should relate to Jesus. We should speak about him with a burning desire and passion to spread the Good News and share his love with us. For some, myself included, my journey of faith was/is a long and winding one. But that's a story for another post. Where I am right now in my faith and love of Jesus is something that 10 years ago I could never fathom.
Has my faith journey been all hearts, flowers and rainbows? Of course not. My family and I have are crosses to bear (although I'm not going to lie, anytime God wants to lift some of that weight of the cross would be A-OK with me!!!!!)...but that's part of our faith journey. My faith lies in those little moments of grace where I can clearly see Jesus. It's in the little joys we share with my step-dad as he recovers.
The road of faith is long and winding and never-ending until we reach the ultimate destination - eternal life with Him!
Sunday, June 5, 2011
Well, it was a fairly relaxing weekend. Chilled with the family and my boyfriend and appreciated just being together. Were there more productive things I could have been doing? Of course (you should see the stack of laundry spilling out of my closet to be done!) but as my family and I know all to well, life is too short and unexpected crap happens. They force us to realize what's truly important - family, friends and loved ones. They are the be all and end all. Nothing and no one else compares.
Actually, I take that back. God and faith compares. I attended Mass yesterday at my parish (which I love) and the sang one of my favorite songs "Here I Am" written and composed by Tom Booth. I had the pleasure of working with Tom a few years ago when he was a speaker for some of our youth events. But there's something that touches you to the core when you listen to it. I couldn't find a video of Tom singing it but I managed to find the audio. You can listen to it by clicking on the link below and then click "Listen Now." I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
Friday, June 3, 2011
So what do you do after a long day, or rather a long week? Sit with the family for Friday night pizza and movies. Granted, when this family tradition first started, I was three weeks old and sitting in my baby chair in the middle of the kitchen table while my great-grandmother, grandparents and mother broke off a tiny piece of Me & Ed's linguica pizza. From that day on, a tradition was born.
Friday night pizza and movies continues to this day thirty-yadda-yadda-yadda years later. Tonight, instead of having pizza delivered, we opted for Freschetta pizza. And although the days of running down to the video store are long gone thanks to On Demand and Red Box, we still "rent" movies. On the playbill tonight Gnomeo and Juliet, one of my new favorite animated movies (considering it's not a Disney flick and I am a HUGE Disney freak...although it did pay homage to one of my favorite attractions at Walt Disney World - The Tiki Room!) and The Rite which is based on the story of Fr. Gary Thomas and his experience as an exorcist. Both films were good for very different reasons. Yet both are rooted in hope...in G&J the hope that true love will overcome the hate between two families while The Rite focuses on the hope and belief that love of God and Jesus can triumph over sin and the devil himself.
Well, that's enough commentary for now.