Breaking News: Pope Benedict Will Retire

My husband broke the news as he handed me coffee.  From Vatican Radio:Pope

Pope Benedict XVI on Monday said he plans on resigning the papal office on February 28th. Below please find his announcement.
Full text of Pope’s declaration

I don’t know what to say. Need coffee.

 

Posted in Catholic Church, Pope Benedict XVI | Tagged | 1 Comment

In Ireland on the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord

My favorite deacon and I are in Ireland visiting our daughter and her family. I have Presentation of the Lordbeen hanging out with my beautiful grandchildren. That is why the silence from this blog has been deafening.

I will resume blogging when we get home. But I did want to display the image above which is provided courtesy of stainedglassinc.com . Check out the site especially if you are in the market for gorgeous sacred art.

Jimmy Akin has an interesting post on today’s feast, which is also my dad’s birthday. Happy Birthday Dad.

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As Christmas Draws to an End

The good news is that today was a very productive work day for me. Unfortunately, Baptism-of-Jesus-Icon1that means that I didn’t get time to post. I had wanted to write on the reading from the Divine Office for today, because it resonated with me.

Fortunately The Anchoress was also struck by the reading, and she did post on it.

“For a little while longer, we are still in Christmas, but every day the mysteries of the season seem to wither a little, like the leaves of the poinsettias; the expectation of Advent seems far away, and in just a few days we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord, and enter — with some sense of refreshment, because after a time we long for the comforts of what is routine and regular — into Ordinary Time.

The Baptism of the Lord is being presaged in the readings and prayers of the Divine Office. In Advent we prayed, “Drop down dew…heaven, pour down your water from above; let the just one descend. Open up O earth, and let the savior bud forth…” And now, we are thinking of water again — this continual saturation of presence:” Continue Reading…

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“Put No Trust in Princes”

Put no trust in princes, in children of Adam powerless to   Political tee shirt2save. Who breathing his last, returns to the earth; that day all his planning comes to nothing.Psalm 146:3-4

There is a lot of post election blues and even some anger in the pews. This is not reserved to the more Republican than Catholic crowd. I have encountered strong emotions among those who have a strong Catholic identity and have no party loyalty.

They just feel helpless living in a culture that is rapidly sliding into a moral sewer and that is isolating those who strive to live a life in obedience to Christ.

These faithful Catholics hoped that the Republicans were truly pro-life contrary to the mounting evidence.

But Jesus is the only reason for our hope. To put our faith in earthly princes is pure folly. The only way to bring about peace and justice based on the dignity of the human person is to proclaim the Gospel to everyone that we encounter.

To do this we must love. Muscular, self-giving sacrificial, and heroic Christian love. We must love with joy. This is impossible, of course, without God’s grace.

I am a long way from loving like a true disciple.

So I find myself on my knees praying for a loving heart and the courage to truly live the Gospel in the world without retreating into an interior hermitage.

It is not going to be easy. Our political system is becoming more and more fractured. The divisions are becoming insurmountable.

As Mark Shea writes:

“American politics often seems to boil down to the same two groups of enemies shouting “My rights!” “Dead children!” and then switching sides depending on whose ox is being gored. Sometimes, to spice things up, they switch to calling each other Hitler.”

Jesus prayed that we would be in the world, but not of the world for a reason.

Note: the picture above is of a tee shirt that will soon be on sale here.  I would by one, but somehow I don’t think that it will help to change hearts.

Posted in Catholic Identity, Church and the Public Square, Culture of Death, Culture Wars | Tagged | 2 Comments

The Theology of the Barn Yard

People find themselves drawn to the Catholic Church and the RCIA for many different Theology of the barnreasons. Each person has a unique conversion story. A few years ago there was a man who came through our RCIA that made quite an impression on my favorite deacon.

It seems that this man had hit rock bottom. He was a slave to drink and other vices. One day he found himself, as a day laborer, mucking out a filthy barn. Somehow he managed to clean out the barn. This led to an epiphany: if he could clean up such a filthy place, then he could clean up—muck out—his soul. The man reasoned that he could, with God’s help, clean up his life.

My deacon speaks of this man’s conversion often; he calls it the “Theology of the Barn Yard”

It is a reminder that we all fall short of the glory of God. That is why Jesus gave us the merciful sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation. If we confess and repent, God will always takes us back. He  picks us up when we fall face down in the mud and muck.

And unlike Humpty Dumpty, the King of Kings can put us back together when we are broken.

Dr. Tom Neal, over at Neal Obstat has a thought provoking post up that reminded me of The Theology of the Barn Yard.

Excerpt:

God of Muck

“Then I recalled a gentleman I have written of in this Blog before (the one about vulgarity) who returned to the Church after many years away. He had a gut-wrenching and heart-ripping experience in the confessional with an old monk that left him utterly changed (and to this day, years later, even more so). He described his confession this way: “It was like I was sinking in sewage and Jesus grabbed my hand and pulled me out. I’d never felt so clean in my life. After it was over, the monk said to me: now, the Lord has taken you to himself again, clothed you in white garments and re-lit the flame of faith that was blown out in your soul after your baptism. Now, keep it that way! It was like Jesus himself was talking to me!”

God conspired for a whole history in time to give us this reconciling Sacrament, like a bridegroom consumed by love for a bride who has spurned him; a Bridegroom who spares nothing to win her love back.

We Catholics really tend to domesticate our faith, but truth is our Sacraments transact absolutely, totally, completely crazy stuff — stuff that could only have been dreamed up by (a la Catherine of Siena) Dio, pazzo d’Amore, God, the mad Lover.

Look for Him at your next Confession.” Read Fire and Muck…

I must add a fourth resolution to yesterday’s post: Get thee to Confession more often!

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Happy New Year Revolution

Yup.  It is me; still breathing. Out of hiding at last. I hope that you and yours are prayer-on-my-knees4having a very blessed Christmas season.

This has been a challenging Christmas season in Casa Kehoe. My dear husband was and is the only deacon on board (for Christmas) at our parish for the 6th year in a row. The poor guy never really had a day off. To make matters worse, he was in charge of year end inventory (as per usual) at his day job.

So it has been over 6 years since we have been able to be with our children and grandchildren for Christmas. We will be going to Ireland to visit our daughter and her family in a few weeks, and we were with our son and his family for Thanksgiving. But it would be nice…

But I am not whining. Honest. I knew what I was getting into when I gave my permission to the bishop for my favorite deacon to be ordained.

At least it proved to be a fruitful time for me, as I had plenty of time for taking a self inventory.  The result? It is time to make some radical changes. Hence the reference to New Year Resolutions  Revolution.

Why Revolution. What I need is a radical change. A transformation of body, mind, and soul.  As John the Baptist said, He must increase; I must decrease. (Jn 3:30)

Since I am weak when it comes to staying the course, I am going to go public with my resolutions.  At the very least it will be a much needed lesson in humility.

Here goes. Gulp.

  1. Pray more. My prayer life is pathetic. I just have to make the time to sit in the presence of God, no matter how busy or tired I am, throughout the day. As St. Paul exhorts: pray without ceasing.

“All highest glorious God, cast your light in to the depths of my heart.
Give me right faith, firm hope, perfect charity, profound humility, with wisdom and truth
so that I may do what is truly your holy will.”
(Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi)

  1. Surrender More. Turn myself—and all of my troubles, worries, and needs over to God. As the first antiphon from today’s Office of readings says, Surrender to God, and he will do everything for you. For a lovely reflection on surrendering to God read this post from Dr. Tom Neal.
  2.  Love others more. This means being a better wife, mother, daughter, friend, and yes, blogger. The plan is to blog at least once a day (Monday-Friday) starting now. It is so easy to become overwhelmed by work and illness. It makes for an easy excuse to retreat from the world. Heck even hermits have people over for dinner in their hermitage. We need to start offering hospitality to our friends again.
  3. Eat less. Since the body is as integral to being human as the soul, I am going to shed a few pounds this year. Think of it this way: losing weight is an outward sign that Jesus is increasing while I am decreasing. I hope. That is my story and I am sticking to it. Heh.

The bottom line is that I am going to work on, with God’s grace, being a true muscular disciple of Christ Jesus.

It is time to fix my gaze on the Cross, so that I do not lose sight of heaven.

Related: Be Afraid  by Thomas J. Neal, Ph.D.

Posted in Discipleship, Holiness, Prayer, Uncategorized | Tagged | 5 Comments

Reasons to Vote for the Not Obama Candidate

I am simply Catholic. Not a Democrat. Not a Republican. This election has my brain in a twist. On one hand, I can’t vote for Obama. He has jumped the shark on abortion and freedom of religion. On the other hand I am not comfortable with voting for the may be slightly better Romney.

So do I hold my nose, vote for Romney, and hope for the best? Or do I write in a candidate?

The Vice presidential debate was not helpful. Catholic Biden was condescending and patronizing. His “I am personally apposed to abortion but..” stance is as old as it is wrong. Ryan was not much better as a Catholic.  According to him Abortion is just fine in certain circumstances. So much for the inherent dignity of human life.

I have (maybe) decided to vote for Mr. Not Obama because:

1. If he ousts Obama, the press will without a doubt stop being cheerleaders for the president no matter what he does. Accountability Yea!  Oh and maybe somebody in the MSM will speak out about the administration’s  kill list and drones.

2. The war protesters will return. Yea I know they were really protesting Bush. Still someone needs to be questioning the war in Iraq.

3.  It is just down to voting for the guy who will do the least harm. The not Obama Candidate is, in my opinion, that guy.

But I am convinced neither candidate cares about ordinary Americans. They live in their own little elite bubble. Romney and Obama think that they are our betters.

That is why I put my trust in Jesus not earthly princes.

Lord have mercy.

Posted in Abortion, Culture of Death, Politics | Tagged , | 12 Comments