September 11, 2011
September 6, 2011
September 3, 2011
August 29, 2011
"Dear friends, may no adversity paralyze you. Be neither afraid of the world, nor of the future, nor of your weakness." -- The Holy Father on Saturday, August 20, 2011.
As I wrote before, I had the privilege and blessing of attending World Youth Day, or Jornada Mundial de la Juventud, in Madrid, Spain. When I was there I was aware that it was a privilege and blessing, although the fruits for my own life seemed far from evident. Along with three colleagues and friends, I was responsible for the safety of 26 of our school's best, brightest, and most beautiful girls. I knew it was going to be a window into parenthood in the first few hours: flying passports, scattered medications, queasiness, uneasiness, and forgetfulness were abounding. This is all of course not to mention the spiritual questions that were directed to us: Why should I believe in this Jesus Christ? What if I doubt God's love? How do you know your vocation? Why is there so much suffering? And of course, there were constant fears on my behalf: Are we safe? Is anyone being pickpocketed? Is this girl going to pass out? Is another Italian teenage boy going to try to kiss my dear student?
At one point I turned to our school's priest and my dear friend and said, "Are you praying for me? I'm praying for you." And he said, "Dear, this whole trip is the prayer. The getting up early, the walking, the exhaustion." And that was enough for me to table any plan to have a spiritual experience of my own.
And yet, in His goodness, the Lord gave me a beautiful experience on Saturday night. The Vigil with the Holy Father was ushered in by a massive wind storm that kicked up dust in our eyes. Lightning threatened us every 30 seconds. Rain came in torrents. And yet, the Holy Father continued on, and gave us 20 minutes or so of adoration. In the chaos of the storm, in the sea of 2 million people, the airfield went quiet. And though I only had about 60 seconds to adore Our Lord until someone needed something, I was able to be present to the Lord and He to me, as if we were the only two people there. As the Holy Father urged us to not be afraid of those three things mentioned above -- the world, my fears, and my weaknesses -- I felt that God was speaking directly to my heart. In a moment when all was stormy outside and even inside, all went calm. I have never experienced such a communion before. And I don't know if I will again. But that 60 seconds was more than enough. And its graces are producing bushels of fruit in my life right now, and I'm sure that will continue to in the months to come.
I hope that you, readers, are experiencing graces, as I offered the chaos up for you!
August 19, 2011
The Two-Minus One Pregnancy (New York Times)Counter Point:
Meet the Co-Parents: Friends not Lovers & their children (Telegraph)
August 12, 2011
This summer has flown by. I only have a few updates, but I think they are worth noting for upcoming conversations:
1. I spent late spring and most of summer dating a boy-man (although I didn't know he was a boy-man at the outset). And I just ended things with the boy-man. *Note to boy-men: if you do not intend to pursue a woman romantically, but only platonically, please do not kiss her every time you see her, bring her gifts from your travels, and engage in a daily conversation with her. She's going to think you like her as more than friends.
2. God's grace has been abundant in my life. Last week's Sunday homily was about seeking God in "the storm" (the reading was about Peter on the boat in the storm). The priest said simply, "If you look for God in the storm, you'll find Him. If you don't, you won't." It's been immensely helpful. I'm getting amazing things from Scripture every time I pray with it. Our Lord is so good and generous in giving us words when we don't have them.
3. I'm off to Spain with 26 students and 3 colleagues for World Youth Day! Please pray for our safety and for the openness of all of our hearts to Christ's call for us. I will keep you all in my prayers and sacrifices.
All for now. Keep on keepin' on.