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Would I Have Chosen Differently?

Here is the testimony of a courageous woman I know - Lori-Lou. She is courageous because she is willing to share publicly her regret of having an abortion, to share her woundedness so that others may give pause and identify with her, and to share the healing she has received so that others may have hope! She is among the most joyful women I know.
Here is the link to the Silent No More webpage.
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My Soul Woke Up...

I am just ending my annual visit to Madonna House Apostolate. It has been a blessed time. Today, Fr. Michael W. gave as part of his homily a text written by Catherine Doherty. It is part of Catherine's constant dialogue with the Saviour. I could not help but think that these very words could also be from the mouth of St. Mary of Egypt. I offer them below for your own conversation with the Saviour.

* * * * * * * * * * *
Somewhere along the road of life, by the grace of God, my soul woke up, and its hunger became a fire, a fire that consumed me, ate me up, with its intense, devouring heat.

I could not rest anywhere except in motion—in a motion that led me to God. That is how I began the journey inward, that long, endless journey that every soul must undertake if she is to meet her God.

It is a strange journey, across arid plains and verdant valleys, and deserts—a journey of many crossroads and endless sharp turns that confuse and clamor for a rest. But the hunger for God knows no r…

In Your divine compassion...

In Your divine compassion, accept me as I now repent. I have wasted my life like the Prodigal, but I cry aloud to You: I have sinned, and have no need of others to accuse me; for I myself bring before You all my shameful acts.

I have forsaken the foods of angels, and like the beasts have fed upon evil wickedness. But now that I turn back, receive me as one of Your hired servants, O heavenly Father.

O faithful, let us all forsake the night of lustful pleasures and hasten to the light of truth, that we may be counted worthy to share in the feast of radiance and joy.

(Ode 1, Monday of Third Week of the Great Fast)

Years ago

Years ago, beyond my memory,
my father stood with his arms outstretched.
With his words of encouragement,
I reached for him,
and, with exhilaration in eyes and breath,
I took my first steps —
from infancy to childhood. Years ago, faded in my memory,
my father stood with his arms outstretched.
With his words of encouragement,
I looked to him,
and, with exhilaration in eyes and breath,
I caught my first fish by myself —
from childhood to adolescence. Years ago, recent in my memory,
my father stood with his arms outstretched.
With his words of encouragement,
I embraced him,
and, with exhilaration in eyes and breath,
I departed on my own journey —
from adolescence to adulthood. Years ago, still fresh in my memory,
my father stood with his arms outstretched.
With his words of encouragement,
I imitated him,
and, with exhilaration in eyes and breath,
I trusted and submitted to the One-Who-Is —
from adulthood to sonship. Love... love... love, never counting the cost. Present …

Surely the Lord is in this place and I did not know it!

Today we celebrate the Feast of the Annunciation of the Mother God. This is a feast of the impossible becoming possible - God taking on our flesh. Today, we dwell in the midst of this mystery of the Incarnation. From the hymnography at Vespers for the feast:
Gabriel stood in your presence, O holy Virgin,
and revealed the eternal plan to you.
He greeted you and announced:
Rejoice, O earth that has not been sown!
Rejoice, O burning bush that was not consumed!
Rejoice, O unsearchable depth!
Rejoice, O bridge which leads to heaven;
O high ladder which Jacob saw!
Rejoice, O vessel of divine manna!
Rejoice, O invocation of Adam!
The Lord is with you. We heard five readings from the Old Testament last night - two from the Triodion, and three from the feast itself. One of my favourite readings is the one about Jacob dreaming of the ladder.
Jacob left Beer-sheba, and went toward Haran. And he came to a certain place, and stayed there that night, because the sun had set. Taking one of the ston…

Untitled Poem 3

the suffering of the child heralds the goodness of the coming age. with every tear, with every pant of breath, the suffering deepens. the joy of the act enlightens the child, so much so, he grows, matures  and teaches. fruits of his father are passed to me with his suffering endured  on that wood. his joy surpasses all happiness. this too is mine at his giving. could i ask  for anything, then but to suffer and endure as he?