St. Paul To Make Local Visits

My husband as the Great Apostle, Christ the King, Westmere
“Rejoice in the Lord always!  Again, I say, rejoice.” Phil.4:4

So what’s the latest with “A Visit with St Paul?”

Well, for various reasons, I haven’t been lining up many events.  Instead, Maeve and I have been praying about the future of “Visit.”   It’s been obvious to us that the performance blesses people as it opens up to them, not only the life and legacy of St. Paul,  but more importantly, the power and beauty of the Gospel.   Yet, it has been a struggle to “open doors” in both churches and schools.  Frankly, it has been tiring.  So, we’ve been praying for the Holy Spirit to make it clear to us, just what efforts should be made and how we might more successfully “knock on doors,” even when many of those doors seem to be shut.

That being said, I’m pleased to report that I shall perform at St. Mary’s Church in Ballston Spa, on Sunday, October 9th, at 2 PM.      The performance will be in their auditorium, which is to the right of the church.

After that, the next event will be at St. Joseph’s Church in Broadalbin, NY  on Sunday, November 13, after the 10:30 Mass. Start time should be approximately noontime.

The Academy of St. Paul joins the Great Apostle in praising Jesus
The Academy of St. Paul joins the Great Apostle in praising Jesus , last fall in Ramsey, NJ

As the above photo indicates, I also perform for schools.  In our diocese, I kept the kids interested at St. Jude’s in Wynantskil.  Their questions afterwards demonstrated their strong interest and lively intelligence.   If you want to read more, please go to “A Visit with St. Paul,” and scroll down to see how much the Spirit was at work that day with the great kids at St. Jude’s.

I have also performed for the Sophomore class at Immaculate High School in Connecticut, and Gabriel Ricard H.S. in Ann Arbor, and students and teachers had very positive reactions in both schools.

Please pray that more principals would be open to inviting me to their grade/high schools!  And church pastors of course.  In fact, if you would be so kind, you can either contact me if you think your pastor or school principal might be interested, or simply forward them this blog.  If you choose the former, my phone # is 518 355-4843.   I really appreciate your help!

Maeve and I extend our heartfelt greetings to all of you as the summer winds down.  We pray that you may get in as much recreation as you can and that your hearts may be filled with the incomparable joy of the Lord, for as St. Paul exhorts us;

“Rejoice in the Lord always.  Again I say; rejoice!”  -Phil. 4:4

 

A Future Only God Sees

Recently, I found a book on the shelf of my local public library that was unfamiliar to me.  “In My Father’s House” was written by Corrie ten Boom, author of the spiritual classic, “The Hiding Place.”  The latter work describes her days as a prisoner of the Nazis, along with her sister, Betsy.  Their crime?  They had hidden Jews in their home in the Netherlands, and were eventually arrested and deported to a concentration camp.  This heroic story of Christian sacrifice was made into a movie by the same name.

Years ago, I read another of her books, “Tramp For The Lord,” which describes her years as a world-traveling evangelist.  This book is a classic as well.  Corrie has much to say about the power of the Gospel, for she was its faithful servant and a powerful witness to Jesus Christ well into old age.  Overflowing admiration for her and gratitude to God is the only appropriate response!  Her books radiate such light and wisdom, providing the reader with great inspiration for walking the “narrow  road that leads to heaven.” -Matthew 7:14

The reason I write today about “In My Father’s House,” is that if there is one lesson that Corrie gets across on almost every page, it is this quote of hers;  ” This is what the past is for!  Every experience God gives us, every person He puts in our lives is the perfect preparation for the future that only He can see.”   This theme is borne out from the  examples taken from her own life, growing up in such a strong, Christian home.  Whenever she recounts some grace that came into her life as a young person, either through her father’s great witness of faith, or other family members,  she  connects it to a future which she could never have anticipated.  Each Bible lesson learned early,  illustrates how God prepared her for a time to come, which would be horrendous in so many ways.

Holy Week presents many stirring events from the last days of Jesus, and causes some of us to  ponder.   One question emerges from our listening carefully to the Passion narrative.  How did He endure it all?  And enduring it, how did he keep his composure, offering only love and mercy to those who showed him such intense hatred and brutality?

Mosaic from Santa Barbara Mission, California
Mosaic from Santa Barbara Mission, California

Of course, this is ultimately unknowable.  If accessed at all, it can only be through the Holy Spirit and through our own faith-filled prayer.  When I think of Corrie ten Boom, I marvel at how she not only endured the horrors of a Nazi concentration camp, but also shared the love and mercy of Jesus Christ with her fellow prisoners, and even with cruel guards.   How did she do it?

“This is what the past is for.  Every experience God gives us, every person He puts in our life, is perfect preparation for the future that only He can see.”

Yes,  Corrie!  I understand.  This must have been true for Jesus, too!  His acceptance of the agony of the Cross must have been what the Father prepared him for, his whole life long.   As one who was fully human, he would have needed preparation to shoulder the Cross, just as Corrie ten Boom did when the Cross came into her life.

What about your future and mine?   Do you ever wonder if there is a greater darkness ahead for our nation and our world?  And if so, do you ever find yourself doubting, as I often do, that you won’t be prepared to endure what persecution and suffering may come?   I shudder to think of what it will be like to live in a thoroughly post-Christian society, a time that Isaiah prophesied, “Woe to those who call evil good, and good, evil.” -5:20

Yet, along comes the remembrance of the last days of Jesus.  Once again, we are invited to Calvary with the Blessed Mother, St. John and those holy women.   There, with our eyes fixed on the “suffering servant”, we will be reminded that if he did it, then so can we.

Oh Mary, Mother of Sorrows, pray for us!
Oh Mary, Mother of Sorrows, pray for us!

Everything and every person in your life is preparation for your future, a future that only God can see.

For a wonderful link, go here and see many photos and quotes of Corrie ten Boom.   Such holiness exudes from her beautiful face!