27 February 2008
23 February 2008
19 February 2008
15 February 2008
Last year we shared a few biographical tidbits of this "cousin" of ours. We would continue to throw out, to our readers, the question of why he might have been named the patron saint of toy-makers. If any among our readers know why (or even have a creative suggestion), do comment!
Below we share a prayer written by St. Claude:
Lord, I am in this world to show Your mercy to others. Other people will glorify You by making visible the power of Your grace by their fidelity and constancy to You. For my part I will glorify You by making known how good You are to sinners, that Your mercy is boundless and that no sinner no matter how great his offences should have reason to despair of pardon. If I have grievously offended You, My Redeemer, let me not offend You even more by thinking that You are not kind enough to pardon Me. Amen.
10 February 2008
This past weekend, our vocation duo visited (nearby) Christendom College for their third annual "discernment weekend." Bishop Paul Loverde celebrated Mass on Friday afternoon to begin the weekend of events which included Adoration, Mass, break-out sessions on the different vocations in the Church, vocation booths and a First Sunday of Lent party on Saturday night. The events were geared to provide an opportunity for students who are considering a vocation to the religious life or priesthood to visit with vocation directors in formal and informal ways. The vocations booths drew a large crowd, including local families who brought their young children to see and to visit with the religious and priests. Over 25 communities and dioceses were represented during the vocation weekend. The dry erase board in the student commons, listing the schedule of break-out sessions concluded its message with the following:
"Do not be afraid to open your hearts ..."
06 February 2008
02 February 2008
10. You find yourself beginning and ending every activity with a prayer. Not a bad habit to cultivate for all walks of life. "The sisters should remember that all work, united to that of Christ, is a sharing in the total work of creation and redemption" (Constitutions XVI).
9. You have cancelled your credit cards. You notice a sudden desire to "leave everything" and follow Christ and your credit cards are the first things you leave behind! "The sisters promise to have no wealth but that of the community" (Constitutions V).
8. You have changed your ringtone to the Halleluiah Chorus. Instead of using one of the generic ringtones pre-programmed on your phone (or a nifty pop-song that you've downloaded) you have "King of Kings and Lord of Lords" announcing each phonecall for you. Sorry, but cell phones are not covered in our Constitutions.
7. You respond to the sound of a bell. When you hear a bell, you either pray or eat. "Be assiduous in prayer at the hours appointed!" (Rule of St. Augustine)
6. When you visit for a retreat you leave something behind. It doesn't happen too often, but when it does, it is usually a good sign that you may want to return. "From experience, the sisters know that hospitality stimulates their own fidelity and deepens their life of prayer" (Constitutions XIV).
5. Sephora has taken you off their mailing list. Since you no longer take advantage of thier gift-with-purchase incentive, they have removed you from their mailing list. Instead, you find yourself receiving "Mystic Monk Coffee" ads in your email inbox. Make-up not covered in our Constitutions.
4. You no longer feel the urge to "shop 'till you drop." Instead, you find yourself preparing for Christmas by spending more time in prayer and checking the internet for nearby Churches that have Adoration. "By vocation the sisters are called to the contemplative life. Prayer is at the center of their existence" (Constitutions VIII).
3. You've simplified your wardrobe. You notice a sudden change in your ensembles for work. You no longer delight in coordinating outfits for different occasions and you find yourself wearing the same clothing day after day. "The habit is to be conceived in such as way as to be a sign of consecration, a witness to poverty, and an expression of fidelity to the tradition proper to the Order" (Constitutions JN 146).
2. When visiting for retreat, you manifest a willingness to put away flatware. Fidelity in small matters is highly valued in monastic life since "big matters" don't often come our way. Retreatants (and postulants!) who cheerfully reach for the flatware as it exits the dishwasher show promising signs of a vocation. "The sisters value every task, whether manual or intellectual" (Constitutions XVI).
1. Jesus Christ. "To have chosen Jesus for the only object of your love is to have promised that your hearts shall have no other affections than to please Him, to love and serve Him, and that all your desires shall be for Jesus, all your solicitudes for Jesus, all your thoughts for Jesus, in a word, all your soul and all your faculties for Jesus alone, Whom, of your pure unconstrained and free will, you have chosen for the only Spouse of your heart, and the sole object of your love" (St. Jane de Chantal).