My Lent 2019 Book List Plans

Is this the year you really want to dive into Lent? Do you want to come out of this Lenten Season and truly feel that you've had a small share of living in the desert with Christ for 40 days? I know that I do. Maybe it's an upcoming birthday that's making me have more of a now-or-never type of attitude towards Lent. Or maybe I just acutely feel the necessity of truly modeling this for my children, and living it with my husband. Whatever it is, these are the books and resources I'm going to use this Lent to really LIVE the season from Ash Wednesday all the way through to Easter Vigil. Look them over. If something looks helpful to you, use it. If it inspires you, go with it. I hope all of these bless and encourage you.

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7-Quick Takes

Join Jen and the other Quicktakers over at the Conversion Diary

1. Let me start of by saying I passed my 10-years-of blogging anniversary last week. Ten years.

You know, I started this blog without a real plan or a real goal. I just basically needed a place to express my opinions on the internet without getting shut out or banned by a liberal moderator. So at first this was an extension of some of the forums I had been commenting on. Then it quickly focused on my family and some of the things going on in our lives and a way to document times and events and then to sharing things that worked for me in practicing my faith, homeschooling and other ventures.  Ten years ago I was a grieving mom of a stillborn son with five children at home and homeschooling all of them.  Now I have six children, but only three at home, postmenopausal with a granddaughter too!  I think the blog has evolved with me.

2.  I watched Rev. Billy Graham's last  sermon special on Fox last night. I was stunned to see how frail he is now and I am afraid that maybe he won't be with us much longer.

I remember watching his crusades on t.v. with my mother and grandmother when I was a little girl.  He always managed to touch my heart and my mind would race with what I could do to be worthy of Jesus' sacrifice and how I could turn from sin.  This is the Billy Graham I remember.

and I never felt conflicted between his message and what I was learning in my Catholic faith.  In fact, a lot of what he said sounded very Catholic to me. 

3.  So I was a little irritated with Sarah Palin's remarks this morning.
  "His message transformed my mum's life.
"In the 70s, she would tune into the Billy Graham crusades, televised. My mom was raised Catholic, and she ... was yearning for something more.
"His invitation for people to know that they could have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ - my mom understood that from the way that he could articulate it. She became a Christian, led the rest of the family to Christ, and that I believe transformed our family."

So I wrote this on her facebook wall:
I was a little disappointed to read about your mother's experience as a Catholic listening to Billy Graham. I am a Catholic and I too remember listening with my family to Rev. Graham over the television. I don't recall anything that he said that was against my Catholic faith and in fact he reaffirmed much of what my parents, my Catholic school and my priest were already teaching me about living a life in Christ. Which is only natural I suppose because Catholics are Christians. I was very touched and influenced by watching Billy Graham on t.v. as I was growing up. You don't become a Christian by leaving the Catholic church and joining a different Christian church as Catholics are already Christians. I believe Rev. Graham would concur with that.
 That has since been removed.  You know, I like Sarah Palin and I agree with most everything she stands for.  But this has certainly put a damper on my enthusiasm.

4. I finally found the movie to As I Lay Dying on Amazon.

Noah, Gabe and I read that last spring and I had hoped that we would watch it together when it came out in September.  By then, of course, Gabe had moved out.  But I don't think the movie ever came to my town anyway - at least I never saw it advertised anywhere. So when I found it this week Noah and I sat down to watch it.

When we were done Noah said, "Well, this time the movie was just like the book.  That's not a compliment!"

I agree.  The book was hard enough to follow, but to not have some of the subtle nuances from the novel, I think it made watching the movie all that much harder to watch.

Interestingly, as true to the book as the movie was, it left out one of the scenes that truly made it part of the grotesque genre.  In the novel, the little boy drills into his mother's coffin so that she can breathe and in doing so, inadvertently drills into her corpse. That coupled with the coffin ending up in the river and the overwhelming stench from the delaying in burying the coffin is part of what made the novel a dark comedy.  They did refer to the stench in one scene, but after that it was just forgotten, which I didn't think lived up to the descriptions in the book.

5.This is one of the things I fixed this week on my new gluten free/Paleo type of diet.  Pork chops with apples and onions - a real crowd pleaser!

Pork chops with apples and onion

6. I've decided that the best way that I can serve my granddaughter's mother is to just stay away for a while.  We haven't gone over there unannounced, nor have I been bombarding them with calls and texts. My son did call me once this week to pick him up from work to take him to the bank, which I would have been happy to do, but then his plans changed and he didn't need a ride from me.  I always think of serving as "doing" as in cooking, cleaning, etc. But maybe in this instance I can best serve by staying at a distance until they are ready and just keeping them in my prayers.

That all said, the custodial grandmother, who actually lives in the house with my son, the baby and the baby's mother was kind enough to send me this photo yesterday.

It feels really weird to be an outsider, but I think that's where our side of the family needs to be for now.

7.  Today is the last day to get an indulgence from praying I a cemetery.  So the kids and are going to make a special point to do just that today!  Praying for our beloved dead friends and relatives.

Cemetery Angel

Here is a prayer I found in my mother's things.  This is what we said at the cemetery today:

Dear God of Mercy, I pray this day for all souls, both known and unknown to me, who, although touched by death, have not yet entered Your Heavenly Kingdom.  While they loved you in their lifetime, they failed in some way to attain the perfection Heaven demands.  So in my love fr them, I offer my prayers, my small works of mercy in the hope that Your mercy will flow to them and bring them to eternal peace with You.

May they intercede for me for the graces I may need to live out my life on earth in perfect obedience and love of You, my Father, so that I, too may join them in everlasting life with You in Heaven.

Eternal Rest Grant unto them Oh Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them.  May their souls and the souls of all the faithfully departed, rest in peace.


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  1. Very interesting that Palin took that innocuous comment down. I'm not too much a fan since she quit being gov in the middle of her term.

    Moving final sermon from Billy Graham. Interesting to me that what Graham sees is confrontational about the cross is that it represents a) we are sinners, which we don't like to hear, and b) it's only through the blood of the cross that we are redeemed. There's no sense from him that the scandal of the cross might be also that God asks us to carry our cross rather than Him simply taking ours away. There's no sense that the stumbling block of the cross might be that God can make our suffering redemptive, or that God can choose to triumph not *over* weakness but *through* it, and the one thing we don't want to be is weak. Or to suffer. So the sermon was in tune with modern sensibilities in that sense.


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