Tuesday, August 5, 2014

August Queen of Heaven

I saved this more than a month ago to post this month. I really should have prayed this beautiful prayer yesterday before heading to Republic Square for the Stand4Life prayer service. The "orange shirts" were yelling and promoting a particularly disturbing message. The kids were angry and protective, it is hard for them, especially Number One Daughter, to pray for those who are fallen. I don't always respond to her anger in a way that fosters change. I am working on that, some days are better than others. I pray for more good days than bad and beams of joy amidst the struggles.

August Queen of Heaven, Sovereign Mistress of Angels, you who at the beginning received from God
the power and the mission to crush the head of Satan,
we beseech you humbly, send your holy legions so that,
on your orders and by your power, they will track down demons,
fight them everywhere, curb their audacity and plunge them into the abyss.

Who is like God?

Oh good and tender Mother,
you will always be our love and our hope.
Oh divine Mother, send the Holy Angels and Archangels to defend me
and to keep the cruel enemy far from me.

Holy Angels and Archangels defend us, protect us. Amen.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

St. Adjutor, Patron Saint of Swimmers

Today was the first swim meet of the season. Number One Son and Number One Daughter are both on the swim team this year, but only Number One Son swam in the meet today. Number One Daughter wants more practice before competing.
It is so very hard to watch a child with so much drive and determination get lapped and finish last in almost all of his events. Last year, the coaches put together relay teams and he got a few ribbons after a year long dry spell. Fewer middle and high schoolers participate in swim team than elementary-aged kids, his competition is dwindling.

St. Adjutor, pray for us!

You've probably never heard of St. Adjutor. He is one of the thousands of local saints who never achieved the international fame of St. Anthony of Padua or St. Therese the Little Flower. But as the only patron saint for swimmers, he deserves a wider reputation.
Adjutor was born to a family of knights in Vernon, Normandy. When Pope Urban II came to France in 1095 to launch the First Crusade to liberate the Holy Land from the Saracens, Adjutor took the cross and with a company of 200 fighting men set out for Jerusalem.
The Crusade stalled for a time at Antioch where the Saracens besieged the city. One day Adjutor led a small party of knights outside the city walls on a scouting expedition. When they were far from Antioch, 1,500 Saracens ambushed them. Adjutor and his men put up a desperate defense, but it seemed hopeless. In the thick of the battle, as he cut and slashed at Saracens on every side, Adjutor called upon his favorite saint, Mary Magdalen. Through her intercession a violent storm broke over the battlefield. The terrified Saracens threw down their arms and fled.
Once the siege at Antioch was lifted Adjutor and his men joined the rest of the Crusaders in the conquest of Jerusalem, where he remained for 17 years as part of the Holy City's garrison. While on patrol outside Jerusalem Adjutor fell into another ambush, but this time he was captured. The Saracens dragged him off to one of their strongholds off the coast of Palestine where they locked the knight in a dark, dank cell and loaded down his wrists and ankles with heavy chains. From time to time his jailers took him from his cell to torture him, but Adjutor never lost his faith or his courage. He prayed once again to St. Mary Magdalen and once again she came to his help, breaking his chains and showing him a way to escape. Once he was outside the castle walls, he dove into the sea and swam for the shore, then walked to Crusader territory. He returned to his old comrades still wearing the broken chains from his prison.
Soon thereafter Adjutor returned home to Normandy where he built a chapel in honor of St. Mary Magdalen and became a Benedictine monk. The stretch of River Seine that flowed near Adjutor's abbey was troubled by a whirlpool that had taken the lives of many boatmen who had been caught in its current. At Adjutor's invitation, the local bishop came to the abbey to say Mass. Together the two men climbed into a boat and sailed toward the whirlpool. The bishop brought along holy water. Adjutor brought along the chain that had once bound his legs. At the edge of the whirlpool the bishop sprinkled holy water and gave his blessing. Then Adjutor took a link from his chain and cast it into the water saying, "It is as easy for God to free people from this whirlpool as it was for him to free me from my chains." Immediately the whirlpool became calm.
When St. Adjutor died he was buried in the chapel he had built for St. Mary Magdalen. He is still venerated by the people of Vernon as a favorite local saint and the guardian of swimmers and boatmen.
Craughwell is the author of Saints for Every Occasion (Stampley Enterprises, 2001) and Patron Saints Catholic Cardlinks (Our Sunday Visitor, 2004).
(c) Copyright 2007 by Arlington Catholic Herald


Saturday, May 31, 2014

Save the Church of The Holy Innocents

I just signed the petition "Cardinal Timothy Dolan: Keep the Church of Holy Innocents Opened!" on Change.org.

It's important. The Shrine of the Unborn was a Godsend when our little babies were born to Heaven. New York City needs this church, with this name with this charism.

Friday, May 2, 2014


¾ cup cocoa
½ teaspoon baking powder
2/3 cup oil (divided 1/3 + 1/3)
½ cup boiling water
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 1/3 cup flour*
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼ teaspoon salt

Stir cocoa and baking soda in a mixing bowl, add 1/3 cup of the oil and boiling water. Stir until thickened. Add sugar, the additional 1/3 cup oil and eggs, stir until smooth. Add vanilla, salt and flour, stir until combined. Pour into 13” x 9” pan sprayed with cooking oil, bake at 350* for 35-40 minutes.

*When I make these with garbanzo bean flour (1 1/3 cup), people eat them up, so I don’t tell them they are wheat and dairy free!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

I Don't Fit In

My Mommy heart broke today when I heard those familiar words from Number One Son. I've felt that way my entire life. There have been times when I feel like I am included and appreciated but other times, I feel like a complete outsider. I hope that my words relating to him were helpful and we can get through these growing pains together. I wish I knew what part of our ADD brains makes us feel this way. Maybe our ADD behaviors push people away? We are in the middle of the Divine Mercy Novena so the first thought that came into my head was to tell him to trust Jesus and not worry. The Chaplet of Divine Mercy changed my life, it gave me peace that I had never had before. I pray that my children grow up with the Peace of Jesus.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Litany of Humility

From the desire of being esteemed,
Deliver me, Jesus. (repeat after each line)
From the desire of being loved,
From the desire of being extolled,
From the desire of being honored,
From the desire of being praised,
From the desire of being preferred to others,
From the desire of being consulted,
From the desire of being approved,
From the fear of being humiliated,
From the fear of being despised,
From the fear of suffering rebukes,
From the fear of being calumniated,
From the fear of being forgotten,
From the fear of being ridiculed,
From the fear of being wronged,
From the fear of being suspected,
That others may be loved more than I,
Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. (repeat after each
That others may be esteemed more than I ,
That, in the opinion of the world,
others may increase and I may decrease,
That others may be chosen and I set aside,
That others may be praised and I unnoticed,
That others may be preferred to me in everything,
That others may become holier than I, provided that I may
become as holy as I should. Amen.

Sunday, March 23, 2014


My Mom worried about me when I was a little girl, she saw me as a follower and thought I might end up in the wrong crowd. I think she somehow saw that I was invisible to others. I am not the first person people call with news, given "just because" gifts or the one that is praised for things that I do. We are not part of most birthday parties and special occasion gatherings. We have a small group of friends with fairly large families. Adding families is more exponential than just a couple more gift bags. It is easy to exclude us. Social gatherings are mostly centered around food. Our food allergies and vegetarian diet exclude us from just about every party food. Feeding my food allergic children is a constant struggle. My children's feelings are hurt when we gather with our friends and everyone but our family have partied together. My children ask, "Why didn't we go to the party?" The truthful answer is, "We didn't get invited."
My entire life, I have encountered, "I didn't think you liked me," or "You didn't seem interested." So many people have imposed on my parents over the years that I bend over backwards to not impose on others. The honest truth is that I just learned to deal with the disappointment of having only friendly acquaintances and few close friends. I am grateful for my long-time close friends, but Hubby is my very best friend. I have become an increasingly private person. We have had so much suffering and stress in the past few years that I don't want to only talk about negative or bad things but that has been my life for years. I'm in a constant state of stress, it is getting to me and no one seems to notice. I'm feeling invisible.