Thursday, November 17, 2016

Long Long Journey Away To Bethlehem

Long Long Journey Away To Bethlehem..

The gentle strains of this little known carol came wafting from the rear seat of my car this morning.
I was trying to nudge my way through the early morning traffic into the CT-15S freeway with my kindergartner in tow. My thoughts were swirling around the visceral chaos created by many recent events! And then my little worship-leader-in-training’s lilting yet authoritative voice said “Now lets’ pray The Hail Mary”. We prayed our Hail Mary in unison. And then it came again – the self-appointed solo..

Long Long Journey Away To Bethlehem
Mother Mary brave and mild
Joseph by her side

Bless you my child!

The election furor is not nearly over
Almost everybody I know (including myself) has an opinion that was worthy of a throne (or so we think)

View-point bashing and character defamation is being done – apparently for rights and liberty
Choice words are being used to disseminate political agendas

Hate videos in the guise of support for values are continually being posted on the social media forum
Unborn innocents are under assault and in danger of their skulls being crushed

Walls have to be built. That neighbor without clothes and food is to be shunned
Human dignity and respect is history – a thing of the past. An anachronism in our day.

Immorality and arrogance are to be graciously condoned in the role models of this new age.
Values – The only thing that is to remain of it is its spelling!

Friends and communities now have deep scars of differences and the effects of judgment.
Each one views the other with contempt, suspicion and scorn

The love and compassion so taught by our Lord has come to naught
A foundation has been shaken. A city is being divided.

The father of lies is beside himself with delight.
There is bedlam amongst God’s own.

The shepherds are headed in different directions – the sheep are scattered.
I am ready my child, weary but hopeful and sure of just one thing this morning – of The Savior and His Saving Power!!!

… and that is why I am on my way with you on that…
Long Long Journey Away To Bethlehem
Mother Mary brave and mild
Joseph by her side

Holy Mary Mother of God – Pray for us sinners. Now.


Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Kerygma & Gifts

Now what exactly do those two have to do with each other at all?!
Yesterday’s first reading (1 Cor 12: 27-31 ) addresses the much debated aspect of spiritual gifts. Discussions in and around what 'gifts' really mean and are intended for always leave me wondering about how much we deprive the Kingdom of God when our gifts are undeveloped and not harnessed to the fullest.
But coming back to the topic - today my kindergartener brought the two together in that most special sweet way that only she can somehow manage :)
We were on that dreaded morning drive to school / work and traffic was chock-a-block on the Merritt Parkway at 6:30 AM!! We had an hour's commute before we could get to Stop #1.
I was teaching her the tune to the beautiful song "If you want your dreams to be..." from the movie Brother Sun Sister Moon (now she has some stake in that song - after all her patron saint St. Clare was also singing it with St. Francis as they built back a modest chapel with their bare hands).

Suddenly she asked me if she could "sing songs from her mind"
“Of course, munni, I said.
And that was it - the rest of the journey was my little composer putting together the cutest of tunes in her little cherubic voice. The part that got me was the words. They were not random thoughts or lyrics picked from the context of a five year old’s life.
The very first line of the first number went "God I love you so much because you dieeeeeeeeeed for me on the cross!! You save meeeeeeeeee from sin"!!!!
"Claire, little Claire!!" I exclaimed, "Do you realize that your sweet song has the most important message of the Bible in it!". She gushed a little and continued “I love yoooooou so much for you dieeeed for meeeeeeee!!!".
That - the saving message - Kerygma - was flowing so easily, unhindered and at first pass from the unassuming mouth of a kindergartener using her beautiful voice and her 'composership' (that is what we called it for just then ;)) was a wake up jolt for me.
How often do I use my gifts - whatever they may be - to bring the Kerygma message to those who are thirsting for it?!