Saturday, October 17, 2009


What is, are you kidding me, Sweetest Day?

Ugh. What is this disgusting.piece of..? ..Oh..Yum! Chocolate, shaped as an actual heart You knew that.

"Sweetest Day started 87 years ago when a Cleveland candy store owner brought little 'sweet' treats to orphans, the elderly and homebound people on the third Saturday of each October, leading people to call it 'The Sweetest Day of the Year,' according to the major greeting card companies and
But for some reason, in the last few decades, the holiday evolved into a day about your sweetheart, not giving a sweet to someone in need." Duh, do you smell chocolate?..I smell the fumes..of Hallmark.

I was searching the most popular topics on Google for today, October 17th and stumbled across today's biggest hit: Sweetest Day. what?????? what??????? what???????? Could there really be another Hallmarker that managed to squeeze its bulging head into the parade of unholy days of obligations (from the meaning of oblation-gift, gift of love)

Considering the origin of this feastday, I bite my cynical tongue and take the higher rung, adjusting my attitude. If truly this was a day to remember those who rarely received a sweet..whatever, let's make an opportunity..instead of a joke. Smothering my impulse to rant about how much I hate Hallmark days, considering it was an escape from this year's Mother's Day that inspired my blogging, let's turn this day around. Instead of souring this day into another tasteless waste, I choose to love today..and celebrate with a, ..well,.. sweet idea.

How about really thinking about someone, someone you actually know, who is the least likely to get something sweet today..or on any day? No, not chocolate, (unless you are thinking of me), but a something sweet for the heart, a sweet something that would coat his or her heart today.

Do you have someone? We all can think of someone...
Who is your person, girl, boy, young, healthy, sick, happy, sad, rich, poor, likable, not, single, married, old, dead or fully alive? Lover, hater, family, friend, or stranger?

What sweetness, in a gift, can you send this someone today: not flowers, but prayers, not a just a thought, but an email, a card (the stench of hallmark..), a call, maybe even visit. Maybe something you cook or say or make or do? ok, then, buy!

Before I started my googling early this morning, I had a thought of someone whose cares often sadden me. The thought lead to a feeling, a gush of love, for this missed one. Next I was sending an email..just of about 10 words, but ten sweet words. That was all.

Next, I opened my browzer, stumbling upon this Sweetest Day thing. Am I the only one that has not heard of this? It was the top search on google. Maybe my guardian angel, or the email's recipient's, were conferring..they do, you know.. They know all kinds of stuff about us, even dumb things like Sweetest Day and smart things, like googling.

I thought I would send out in gratitude to my angel, some thoughts on these celestial guardians, to any readers today. This would be my gift to googlers that are visiting here today. Its sweet, but not at all fluffy. It is good news.

You can believe -with your brain- this stuff because it comes through years and years of sincere, and anointed study from the Dr. of the Church, St. Thomas Aquinas, also know as the Angelic Doctor of the Church. Why not give it up to the one who has spend the most, time, effort, prayer, honest tested scholarship on this subject. Even unbelieving philosophers tout him as the authority.

These are  the kind of things he wrote about angels:

1. They are here..not any less that your feet are here..or your next meal..or your cat..well, maybe, your dog. They read blogs, and are over my shoulder right now.

2. They are personal, each of us has one assigned to us, more a body or soul guard than a personal valet.

3. Are they attractive? Well, not in a warm and fuzzy, adorable and cute way, but Yes, they are - in a hugely good, and powerful, magnificent and brilliant, and protective way.

4. They are tight with us, even though we cannot see or sense them, they are listening. We can talk to them without even speaking.

5. They are fiercely loyal to Him and to you, His beloved human, and could and would move a mountain, even heavens, if commanded to do so...for your sake.

6. They are there in less than a split second in a crisis - clearly on your side.

7. They can be seen at times, but not recognized, because they are dressed in someone else's clothes, incognito. Be welcoming to all..possibly a angel at your door.

8. Their luminous intelligence makes Einstein's superbrain look like soggy cheerios.  No offense, from where he is now, I am sure he agrees.

How sweet, in a solid as a rock way, it is to know this, don't you think??

Please enjoy this gift of information like bittersweet chocolate, chocolate for grownups, good for the heart..and soul.

NOTE; By the way, after Thomas Aquinas, the great philosopher-theologian wrote the Summa Theologica,he said, at the sight of the Beatific Vision shortly before his death, that all his life's writings were nothing but straw i.e. dung, in comparison with what he had seen of Heaven. Until Heaven, I am grateful for such straw even if it carries a mere sweet speck of God's promises to us, His beloved.

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Rich Young Man? The Poor Old Woman?

Of the the two, I can identify with each. I am a woman, I am fortunate or "rich" by most the world's standards, unfortunate or "poor" in some areas for sure, and I am 63- getting closer to an old woman every day. Yeah, yeah, I know that 60 is the new 40..but sometimes, most often, appearances are just that, appearances. 63 years knocking around on the planet is 63 years is still 63 years knocking around on the planet...from the inside out. The good news, sometimes our vision improves with years..regardless of what the mirror or the media might  Let's focus in on what the readings for yesterday say.about age and the goodies.

Yesterday's reading was a very puzzling gospel reading to me.  I heard an a homily that explained it in an palatable way.

I am still chewing on it. Jesus was giving the rich young man an opportunity to have eternal life as a young man. He recommended that he give to the poor all he had, all that was distracting him from utter dependence on God. He also mentioned not just giving to the poor but living among them so it would open his eyes to what is real and important. As we get older, life deals us necessary losses and enough grief that we slowly but surely have the opportunity to see more clearly how needy we are, but often, the young and fortunate, at this young man was, do not recognize that they are not as self-sufficient as they think, and will soon enough need to become aware of how much depends on God. The old, the sick, and the poor have a daily experience of this dependency.

The quote from Psalms that reads. Lord, teach me to number my days, so that I might have wisdom of heart comes to mind. I have bookmarked this quote for the last 30 years, and it becomes more relevant every year. So this scripture, reminds yesterday's homilist, was more about choices: investing in wisdom and riches of God or in the wisdom or riches of the world.. And again, the beginning of wisdom is fear (awesome respect)of the Lord from Proverbs. He also made the point that we must ask for wisdom so that we can want utter dependence on God. What we pray for shows where our investment is…in this life or in the Eternal Life that the young man really longed for...don’t you think?  I am checking most my prayers twice from now on.

For me, any way I look at it, I need to pray for wise trust: trust is the present challenge for me. Sometimes I feel like if I drop the ball, no one is going to catch it..or even notice it has fallen. I must remind myself that God has skills.. He has been allowing it to drop and helps to catch it so many times in the past, even as I fear the worst. I could use your prayers here..please.

I think that Jesus was telling the rich young man that he deserved even better than what he had gained by following all the rules and being such a good boy all his young life.  Today he was being offered the opportunity of a lifetime: to give it all up for journey to the top rung, unity with God, which is what eternal life means. Jacob in the Old Testament lost the battle with the Angel of the Lord as he wrestled with him up the ladder. He lost a part of his body but gained Heaven when He gave finally up all resistance, and let God win. This New Testament rich young man was another Jacob, much milder mannered it seems,  one who had followed God to this point and was asking for more, but now the price seemed higher, the reward definitely greater. He was being called to early sainthood, like St. Francis, who took the call.

I sometimes  feel kind of depressed like I am the guy as he walked away. He was not going to be condemned for his refusal or delay, but he missed the first opportunity..and who knows when the next one would come and at what cost. We only live once. Knock..KNOCK…KNOCK!!!!!!

Jesus does not mince words or get sentimental much because it is not his business to give energy to what is of no importance in the end.. (We know whose business that is, to know more read CS Lewis, TheScrewtape Letters) Our brother Christ has all the time to wait for us at Heaven’s unlocked gate for He has done His time on earth and even hell, in order to keep eternity’s door open for us. His urgency, as the rich young man sensed and was saddened by, is for us because our time for this opportunity, is limited by number of our days on earth.  I once heard that our soul's enemy's most powerful advice to novice demons is to whisper in human's ear, "Even if it may be true, what's the hurry?"

St Augustine, of all saints, once said that if you want to fly to Heaven, fast and give alms. Jesus may have been saying this to the young man, offering him wings!

Reality check: if I cannot give up unhealthy foods, fasting…just from junk food and over-eating, and what I don’t even need, purging my closet and each room in my home for unnecessary items to which I am sickly attached, then I am as duped as any rich, young man by the prince of this world.   What is my hurry???
I know that for some of you, this is so nothing to give up to get closer to Him, but for me, it is ok for now..if I can even do it..because, inspite of some lofty ideas, I am still only able to digest Pablum..babyfood on some days.  I wish you more.

The Poor Young Woman

How did she not fret at such a start?
When an angel suddenlly appeared, proclaiming
Whose mother she'd be, body, soul, and heart.

How did she know to choose what's best?
Within her soul did strength, wisdom, and courage 
Convene there as faithful guests.

How was she able to count the cost?
To know that all Heaven was at stake
And what could be forever lost

When did she teach her soul to sing so dearly?
Sacred words ringing out
Forever, clearly.

Still just a child, only fifteen
With ordinary dreams of family and spouse
She said ok, she's be His  mother and our queen 

With neither bargaining nor fuss
The poor young woman, now rich with love
Simply said yes, and gave her body in purest trust.