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Everyday Grace:  When Things Stop Making Sense

Everyday Grace: When Things Stop Making Sense

These days, many people feel as if the world were spinning out of control. We’re assaulted by news that isn’t just bad, but is particularly horrible, every time we turn on the radio or consult the internet. Some days it feels completely overwhelming. How can God allow things to get so far out of hand?When you’re feeling like nothing is making sense anymore, here are three things you can try: Pray about it. Prayer changes things. Prayer changes us. God has arranged his world so ...
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Everyday Grace: Trying Confession Again

Everyday Grace: Trying Confession Again

If you’re like a lot of Catholics, you probably don’t go to confession regularly—or often. But Lent is coming, and starting the season with confession is a good way to begin; if you don’t know what to “work on” this Lent, confession might help you zero in on something in your life you’d like to see changed.Still, if you haven’t been to confession for a long time, it’s easy to feel intimidated by the whole process. Here are a few tips to get y...
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Looking to the Light

Looking to the Light

Set between Epiphany and Lent, on February 2, there’s a holiday that’s easy to overlook. It’s the Feast of the Presentation of Our Lord Jesus and the Feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary, but it’s also known as Candlemas, a Christian holiday adopted from a pagan one, marking the halfway point between the shortest day of the year and the beginning of spring, when traditionally candles were brought into churches to be blessed. Candle...
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How To Spend Lent 2018

How To Spend Lent 2018

This year, Ash Wednesday falls on February 14th. There are three special things Catholics do for Lent: prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.PrayerOf course we pray all year long, but during Lent we try to pray a little extra. Maybe your family can pray the rosary together or go to the parish Penance Service. On your own, spend a quiet moment each day telling Jesus how things are going or read about the life of Jesus from your bible each day.Fasting“Fasting” means not eating...
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Finding Hope in the New Year

Finding Hope in the New Year

For many if not most people, 2017 was a year of trials, disasters, and fear, and many of us find it difficult to perceive much change in the new year. But as Christians, we are called to be a people of hope, and there are things that we can do to bring more light to ourselves and to those around us!  In 2018, let's open up to #aNewBeginningWithJesus. If you start every day with a quick prayer, then you’ve changed the whole day already!...
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Christmas: Nothing Stands in God's Way

Christmas: Nothing Stands in God's Way

I remember a clever Jesse Tree that my Mom made when I was growing up. My favorite ornament (representing Adam and Eve) was a little plastic apple core that had once been on a child’s play necklace. There was also a Noah’s ark, Jacob’s ladder, Moses’ burning bush, and Joseph’s coat of many colors, as well as symbols for Ruth, Samuel, David, etc. I really liked it, but there was one problem.I was always wondering, “What does this have to do with Christmas?&rdqu...
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5 Christmas Tips When Family Members Have Left the Church

5 Christmas Tips When Family Members Have Left the Church

Do you have family members who are away from the Church and are not sure what to say to them when they are home for Christmas?I've been there. I was an atheist for over ten years. But every year, I went to Christmas Mass with my family. I am not sure why. Sometimes I felt annoyed during the homilies or unmoved by the liturgy, but there were other times when I felt something stir within me. Granted, I never felt motivated enough to return to the Church after attending a Ch...
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Finding Everyday Miracles Through Advent

Finding Everyday Miracles Through Advent

by Geraldine Ann Marshall (author of Spider’s Gift: A Christmas Story)Creator of all, thank you for everyday miracles: for spider webs shining with rainbows, for golden honey on warm biscuits, and for cricket symphonies. And thank you for the greatest miracle of all: the birth, life, death, and resurrection of your Son, Jesus. Help us to know your miracles in our lives and to share our gifts with everyone we meet. (Spider’s Gift: A Christmas Story)In Advent, we are waiting: waiting f...
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Everyday Grace: Holiday Survival

Everyday Grace: Holiday Survival

So Thanksgiving is almost upon us, a time to express gratitude to God in the company of family and friends. But in a time of deep divisions between people, holidays that bring us together can also tear us apart. Here are three tips for surviving and thriving this Thanksgiving: Take the high road. You will never, ever regret it. Even when someone seems to be baiting you, be graceful, change the subject, acknowledge that they have a right to their opinion. Avoid alcohol. Drinking only intensifies ...
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Teach Us To Pray

Teach Us To Pray

With so much tragedy and anxiety in the world, it’s more important than ever to remember that God is with us through everything. We’re not alone. But sometimes the same routine prayers don’t seem to make a difference. Perhaps this is a good time for you to try a different form of prayer, for a different season of life. Vocal prayer is what we’re all most used to. We say words to God, either from an established prayer (Our Father, Hail Mary, etc.) or simply speaking to God...
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