A Pilgrim Journey with Pope Francis – Jesus’ invitation

cuba-pope_2In his homily in Holguin, Cuba on Monday Pope Francis made note of the Feast of St. Matthew, celebrated by the Catholic Church that day.  He spoke of the call of St. Matthew, that lowlife tax collector, whom Jesus approached and simply said, “Follow me.” St. Matthew dropped what he was doing. Just like that.

Our Holy Father however spoke of Jesus calling someone from the most reviled social class of his day – the publican, or tax collector. The power of Jesus turned Matthew’s heart, so that he could indeed get up and follow him.

We are all invited to Continue reading

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A Pilgrim Journey with Pope Francis – Becoming great

Pope Francis Havana HomilyIn the Gospel from Mark on Sunday, we heard the disciples arguing amongst themselves about who was the greatest. Jesus asked them what they were talking about and when he heard, he was very clear in responding to them:

“If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be the last of all and the servant of all.”

Today in Havana, with the image of communist revolutionary Che Guevara looking over the same square, Pope Francis reinforced that same point during his homily.

Perhaps as we enter this week of prayers and pilgrimage with Pope Francis, we can ask God to help us find ways to serve others, to not seek greatness, and to become more humble servants of God. What ways can we explore changing our own lives in order to become “men and women for others.

That saying, “men and women for others” is Continue reading


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A Pilgrim Journey with Pope Francis – a week off prayer and reflection

Pope Francis Mercy 4Right now Pope Francis is in Cuba, and he is scheduled to arrive at Andrews Air Force Base on Tuesday afternoon. This unprecedented journey from our unprecedented pope has all eyes focused on him and his pastoral visit. This will be his very first visit to the United States.

The blog, which has been in a hibernating slumber since May will spring back to life this week. If you are returning – welcome back! And if you are new, welcome! We hope that you will follow the blog via email or Facebook to keep current. We also have a St. Ed’s hashtag, if you share these posts on Facebook, Twitter, or other social media, please use #StECPPope

The US Catholic Bishops have prepared prayers Continue reading

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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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Resurrection, naturally

Ellie May 2015 WalkOh yes, I’m still here. As is so often the case, I disappear for extended periods of time, for no particular reason – and the days following Easter are often among them!

Add to that a little surgery had me resting more than writing. Plus the weather has finally improved tremendously, and I have been outside enjoying it all, going on long walks with our dog Ellie. Spring has sprung at last!

Which gets me to to this – walking around the woods, or even just my own yard during spring reveals the glory of God in nature. This is not news, but for some reason this year I seem to be more aware of life in the conditions around me in the natural world. Winter hit me hard this year, in a way that it typically does not; its glacial grip around my soul was beyond numbing.

Snowpack March 2015As recently as a month ago, we still had some remaining plowed snow that was covered with dirt. Blocks of old snow/ice – solid and nearly unbreakable, and not in a good way. That glacial grip remained. Like bulbs I planted last autumn, those dry hard little things going down dark and deep, my own unreconciled feelings, were buried in our dry and sandy soil that had frozen over, and was covered by this dark mess.

Crocus April 2015Tulip May 2015Yet, Spring arrived in full, and that gritty pack ice near the curb has slowly melted and washed away. Suddenly green things were emerging – grass, shoots, and leaves. (Sorry – as a writer and a poor copy editor of my own work, I could not resist that one!) The branches of trees which not so long ago appeared dessicated and devoid of any new growth, were sprouting little green tips. And those dang bulbs – up came the green, followed by crocus, then daffodils, and now tulips.

Magnolia bud March 2015No matter how dead something appears, God stirs up the Spirit in the form of new or renewed life. Even in the depth of my winter ennui in those waning days of Lent, the first buds on the magnolia tree outside of my office window caught my attention. On March 24, I decided that I would take a picture every day, or almost every day, and post it on Instagram with the hashtag #magnoliawatch. God uses every means possible to get into our hearts. Why wouldn’t God use using social media and hashtags to get our attention?


Those magnolia buds became my beloved quotidian companions. What might I note from one day to the next? Was the cold too much, would the tree prevail? When would the blooms finally spring forth? Like a bird tending a nest, I was attuned to the slightest details and just as protective!

Full Magnolia White May 2015Full Magnolia Pink 2015At this point the tree has not simply bloomed, petals are already falling to the ground. Make no mistake, the tree is spectacular and I’m in love with all those big pink and white puffballs exploding in color at the end of each branch and twig. However, I see the fallen ones, and while I mourn, I also feel joy. The tree flowers intensely now, but will offer me green shade all summer long. There will be no grieving for the petals for me this year, just an embrace of what follows.

Magnolia May 2015 Full GloryEvery walk I take this Spring reveals new glories and joy, signs and wonders made plain in the flora and fauna of this ecosystem. God appears to have illustrated our Easter season readings and prayers in the growth all around me, and within me. Naturally!

Blessings of Spring to you, blessings of this continued Eastertide!

(Tonight on Tuesday, May 5 at 7PM, we will have Evening Prayer at St. Edward the Confessor. All are welcome for this time of music, prayer and reflection. Please join us!)

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Thank you to our Music Ministry

thank-you-god-bless-you-card58859lgOn this Easter Monday I come to say a loud and resounding THANK YOU to the music ministry of our parish, St. Edward the Confessor!  Thank you and God bless you all. If you were able to be at any of our services during Holy Week, you would have been aware of the tremendous depth, breadth, richness, power, and love found in our combined music ministries. Under the guidance of Director of Music, Mary Jo Brue, and the many hands, hearts, and voices that are a part of it, we have 9 different groups that come together as one during special celebrations, such as Easter. The music is so beautiful, so powerful. So much work and preparation goes into what happens…. Thank you and God bless you to our Music Ministers! You made Holy Week and Easter so beautiful… just like you do every week of the year.

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Χριστός ἀνέστη! Ἀληθῶς ἀνέστη!

the-empty-tomb-george-richardsonΧριστός ἀνέστη! Ἀληθῶς ἀνέστη! Christos Anesti! Alithos Anesti!

These Greek words sum up what today is all about. In fact they sum up everything about our Catholic Christian – or any Christian – faith. Christ is Risen! Truly He Has Risen!

May every blessing and hope of the resurrection be yours! Christos Anesti! Alithos Anesti!


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