Tuesday, September 27, 2011

It's Okay to Kill a Baby in the Womb when...


Can you finish that sentence? I certainly can't. As we prepare to kick off 40 Days for Life around our nation tomorrow, let us prepare our hearts. My prayer is that this battle for Life will be won with love, peace, and grace. 

May God move in our country and change hearts. May minds also change, for once our minds can think clearly, the door is opened for our hearts to change as well. This video is 33 minutes long and it is truly incredible. 
Please watch this and share it with others.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

I Remember...

I was a Sophomore in high school, switching classes, and a girl I knew who was heading down the hall kind of frantically, stopped for a second when she saw me and said, huffing to catch her breath, "The World Trade Center just fell."

I was 15 years old and confused. I honestly had no idea what she was talking about, and thought maybe it was something similar to the stock market crashing? Then we watched news footage in my next class. And the next class after that. And when I went home, my dad was already home (very early for him) glued to the TV. The magnitude of the event slowly sunk in... Our country had been attacked. Thousands of lives lost, injured, widowed, orphaned.... changed... forever. My mom was in Las Vegas at the time with my aunt, and I remember fearing if they would be able to fly back safely after such an event. (Praise the Lord, they did.) 

As I've gotten older and been able to get a better understanding of everything that happened that day, my main emotion is just sadness. Sadness for those who were affected personally. Sadness for those who have been affected over the past ten years as a result of that day... military families who have suffered losses, first responders who suffered health issues from the dust and smoke, children who have had to grow up without their parents... And I feel a deep sadness for those who lack peace in their hearts, who have swallowed lies of intolerance, who carry hatred and vengeance as their banner... who have no respect for the dignity of human life.

Today at Mass, our pastor gave such an amazing homily. There were many elements to it, but the most moving, and challenging part of it was his call to us to not only listen to the words of Scripture, but to obey them. And the Scripture readings for today were not easy, but perhaps that's what made them so perfect for a day like today. The readings today call us Christians to a radical level of forgiveness. Since the number 7 in Hebrew meant perfection, when Peter asked Jesus "Should I forgive my brother 7 times?" he meant "Should I forgive my brother forever?" And Jesus, in his response, "You should forgive him 77 times" meant "You should forgive him forever, and indefinitely." Meaning, there is no crime any person could ever do to me that I should not forgive. 

Now, that's a hard pill to swallow. But as our pastor pointed out today, Jesus does not place such a high standard on forgiveness for no reason. It is because we are ALL sinners. Not one of us is free from some guilt. Who are we to pass judgments, and harbor resentments, and seek vengeance? There's a saying that goes "With our enemies, we want to give out a God-like Justice, but with ourselves, we want to receive a God-like Mercy." The challenge, as Christians is to step back and let God, who is Perfect, be the one to administer justice and mercy according to His will. 

Let us open our hearts to the freedom that is forgiveness, which opens up a path of charity towards others which can lead to healing and conversion. May God bless and comfort all those affected by 9/11.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Why We Evangelize - VLOG

Hey everybody! One of my all-time favorite mommy blogging friends of mine, Allie, recently posted her first ever Vlog to her blog and invited others to step out of their comfort zone and do their first one too!! Soooo... here it is! My first ever Vlog! 

Seriously... can I just give some mad props to all those who regularly upload Vlogs, because it's SO SCARY! Haha. When I was doing my first couple quick videos just to check the lighting and audio and all that, I was practically shaking. It's so awkward to see yourself on video and even MORE awkward to hear yourself talking. Gahhh. Oh well. A little humility will do me some good. So I pushed through and made the Vlog.

I'm talking about kind of a scary topic too, actually! I decided to address the question "Why do we Evangelize?" pretty much because it's something I've been wanting to blog about lately anyway, and since it's already uncomfortable to talk about, I figured I might as well go all out and Vlog it. I did have some little notes written out on the screen to help keep me on track. Nothing worse than listening to someone ramble aimlessly, which I can be kind of notorious for doing!

Here are the Bible verses I quote during the video, just for your reference :)

"I say to myself, I will not mention him,
I will speak in his name no more.
But then it becomes like fire burning in my heart,
imprisoned in my bones;
I grow weary holding it in, I cannot endure it." 
Jer 20:9

"By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another." 
John 13:35

So there it is! I hope you enjoyed it :)
And don't worry, the choking hazard was successfully removed from Gemma's mouth! haha! Little stinker! :P

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Back to Muh Roots, People.

Hey lovely people!!

So. I did it. I changed my blog look once again. I made a few subtle layout changes, revamped my "About" tab over on the left, and made a new header!

The biggest difference you'll notice here is the title of the blog, which is now: Candid Catholic Living. Those of you who have been followers for awhile will know that it's actually the original title of this blog! So. Why the switch-back?

Honestly, there's no big "Aha" reason at all. It just kind of... felt right. See here's the thing. I had always loved the original title, but when I changed it to Whining and Dining, it was (I realize this now, looking back) mostly just because I didn't like the look of it. I had it in this pretty, scripty font and it looked so... fancy. And let me tell you, dear readers, I'm a lot of things, but fancy just isn't one of them. I'm about as down-to-earth as they come. So my mentality was, I want to change the look of my blog to be more reflective of my personality: just an average, fun-loving, deep in the trenches of mommyhood kind of gal! So the blog name changed along with a lot of other features at that time.

But... I never really loved the title Whining and Dining. Don't get me wrong, I think it was cute for sure, but it wasn't as reflective of me as I felt the original title was. And it always sounded kind of... whiny to me. Haha!

Aaaaaaanyway, it recently dawned on me that I really missed my original blog title. It was so much more me and besides, my url still remained the same, even during the W&D phase.

So, ladies and genties, welcome to my new, old blog: Candid Catholic Living. I hope you enjoy it :)
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