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Remain in my love, a reflection for the 6th Sunday of Easter

13746Have you ever heard someone say, “I used to go to church, but I’m not welcome now.”? These words, and variations of them, may be spoken in anger, sadness, resignation, but most always in hurt. Hearing them breaks my heart.

What church doesn’t welcome/like God’s people? God’s longing is to draw everyone in relationship with God, as members of the mystical Body of Christ in the world. All three of today’s readings orient us towards God’s invitation to all people, offered in love, and made manifest through our own participation and action.

image002First we hear about Cornelius, a Roman citizen, who prostrates himself before Peter. Without hesitation, Peter tells him to get up, reminding Cornelius that he too is human, not divine. We are all human, and Jesus – who is divinity enfleshed, came to draw us into deeper relationship with God through one another. Peter tells Cornelius that God shows no partiality, and that every nation that “fears him and acts uprightly” is “acceptable” to Him. At this point, the Holy Spirit “fell upon all who were listening to the word.” Such an event is shocking to the “circumcised” who were amazed by God’s generosity and welcome to those they considered outsiders.

This makes me wonder why God’s generous welcome remains Continue reading

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Am I too late? A last day of Lent reflection from jail

tell-me-not(This Last-day-of Lent reflection is a guest post offered by Shannon O’Donnell. She is a longtime online Catholic friend, from the Seattle-Tacoma area, author, and jail chaplain. Her words never fail to move me.) It’s the last week of Lent, the last days, really. Some days I have been aware of the season, other days, not so much. In the county jail where I work, “Lent” describes more than just those six weeks before Easter. Some people refer to it as “Hell on the Hill.”

In mid-February, we distributed ashes at Catholic services. At communion services and prayer groups, at the one Mass, and I carried a small box of ashes with me as I met with offenders for private talks. Ashes were one thing most people could relate to, so anyone who asked received them.

Out in the parishes, Continue reading

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Taking the cup – a Lenten reflection

'Interesting. . . I see you have a degree in 'Under Achieving'. . .'Another day in Lent, another Gospel challenge. Today – underachieving by design! Yes, you are thinking, “what is she on about now?” You know me, sometimes I like to kid – even, perhaps especially, during Lent.

Achievement. Our world seems pretty much built around it. I worked in the media business for 27 years. My first job was as what was then called (does it even exist now?) “sales assistant.” What did I do? I was a glorified secretary, working for a salesperson. In 1980, this was more likely a man than a woman. If you did your job really well, you would be promoted to – wow, I can’t even remember the title. In was the over-glorified secretary I guess, because you worked for the sales manager, and you supervised the other sales assistants. Yes, I did get this job and I was an incredible disaster at it. At that age I did not have a clue about servant leadership, or that such a thing existed – I was just not ready for any of it.

Today’s Gospel is very clear, if you seek greatness, be willing to serve, not lord your greatness over people. In this passage from Matthew, the mother of the sons of Zebedee approaches Jesus and Continue reading

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Reflection of the Journey of Winter – by Don Wilson

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????Reflection for the Journey of Winter

A time for reflection stirs deep within….
To ponder this journey that we each trod.
For this season I will hopefully find much peace…
It will bid me to be blessed by God.

Many view this season with intrepidation and fear…
For what perhaps another season holds.
The season that I put aside for now….
Not ready to venture out in the cold.

I choose to relish in this winter time….
I will not waste on what might not be.
For what lies in store before these eyes…
Is the season God has gifted me.

There are thoughts of many folks as well…
Some of family also some of friends
I will embrace each that God has sent….
Until this journey has reached it end.

There is peace in this quiet reflection….
That clears my cluttered thoughts in mind.
I will stand before another season…
But for now I am graced by this winter time.

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Returning – and an invitation

Good day! Yes, it is me Fran, warming up the blog as we celebrate the last Sunday of the liturgical year, Christ the King. Beginning next Sunday – God willing – our Advent posts will begin.

Please join us by reading, and if you are so inclined, find a day of Advent that you might like to write about. The readings for each day are easily found at the USCCB website. Click through the calendar and see what moves you. Typically we run one post per day, but sometimes two. If you find a day or day that you might like to write about, please contact me through email or the comments. I can read the comments and not approve them, and they will provide me with your contact email.

Looking forward to returning after a long hiatus!


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Dear Parish Blog

keep-calm+bloggingDear Parish Blog and Parish Blog Readers,

I’m so sorry that it appears that I have abandoned you. I opened the blog today and nearly fell over when I saw that the last post went up on July 12; that one being written by parishioner Don Wilson. And I’m back to post something else from Don, but I will post this first, and his will publish tomorrow.

This blog got started during the summer of 2007, over 7 years ago. I was new to the parish and the area back then, and a blog felt like something that I could do to contribute to St. Edward’s. Fr. Pat gave me the go-ahead, so off I went.

Over the years, many of you have submitted posts, either once, or multiple times. For a time, we had regular writers, but one got her own blog, and others dropped out for various personal reasons. These comings and goings  were fine, because as The Book of Ecclesiastes tells us, “There is an appointed time for everything, and a time for every affair under the heavens.

We specifically seek guest posts during Advent and Lent, another tradition dating back to 2007, although they were first posted on the parish website, then they migrated to the blog.  Advent and Lent remain the times when we are most popular, with many more readers than usual.

imagesThis blog also got started when I was transitioning out of a job in NYC, and moving here. I was unemployed for most of 2008, which gave me more time. Somehow while beginning both work and grad school, and while maintaining my own blog, I kept plugging away. Then I started a blog for my work parish, as part of a practicum in grad school. Still all the plates kept spinning, and I tried hard to keep up, although the same copy would often appear on all three sites.

By time this summer rolled around I knew that I had to cut back and let go, so I did. Truth be told, I am spending more time (although hardly consistently) trying to write more and post to my own blog. Every now and then I get a paid writing assignment, like right now when I am overdue on submitting two pieces. I kept thinking, that I would get back to this blog, and post – but that has yet to happen. And yes, I do sleep and exercise more now that I am not trying to “do it all.” But still – what about the blog?

Don Wilson got in touch with me to post something that you will see tomorrow, from his recent prison retreat with the REC group. That was what brought me face to face with the blog dashboard, and the reality that it has been over three months since the last post.

I am really, really sorry – although I am not sure who is even reading this any longer. Nonetheless, I feel like I have dropped the plate, so to speak, and it may have smashed.

There’s some discerning to do around the more regular posting, although I do promise you that Advent reflections will be back in about a month. Please join me in prayer so that the right decisions can be made. Thank you.

And stay tuned – Don’s post will go up tomorrow!

Thanks for reading, back then and now.



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Wheeee! Some thoughts on the Trinity

PlaylandParkway 136x93When I was a little girl, my father, loved to take us to a local amusement park, Playland. This old fashioned park was shown to the world in the Tom Hanks movie, Big. I can easily recall the excitement of seeing the Playland Parkway sign, letting us know that we were almost there! Wheeee! Let the fun begin!

When I was about 11 years old we headed there one day, to meet up with another family who had a daughter about my age. She wanted to go on a ride that terrified me. And no – I had never been on it, but just the thought of it sent me reeling! It was called the Round Up at that time. It iis the one where you stand up and hold on, but when the ride gets going, centrifugal force holds you in place. My dad liked this ride, but I would never go on it with him. However, not wanting to act like a baby in front of another kid, I Continue reading

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