Writing a letter to your confirmation candidate

It seems that one of the biggest events in confirmation preparation in this country is the letters of support to be given to the confirmation candidates during their mandatory retreats.

I have three such letters saved on this blog:

Confirmation letter to my daughterConfirmation letter to my fourth sonConfirmation letter to to my third son
I've asked my children what they remember about the letter they got from me and their dad, and also what they remembered about the letters they received. 
The answer was not much, or at least nothing specific. In general they were happy to have gotten a bag full of letters and there was a sense of feeling loved and supported. I guess that's the main thing - for them to have a sense that this is an important step in their spiritual growth, and that people they know, love and respect have taken the time out of their lives to let them know that! So here are some tips on procuring and writing letters for young confirmation candidates. Start thinkin…

7-Quick Takes

Join the other Quicktakers at This Ain't the Lyceum.

1. When I first started dating Mr. Pete, he and his friends co-owned a 1948 DeSoto.  They kept it parked at Mr. Pete's sister's garage for a long time.  It also spent some time behind the barn at my family's farm.

I remember going to homecoming riding in it and literally watching the road beneath us, because there was no floor!

Good times!

Eventually the friends grew up, and the car was sold.

This spring, one of the co-owners and good friend, sent this very special birthday card to Mr. Pete - and we loved it!
March 2015 033

March 2015 034

2. Calvin and Sarah are having decorative bottles as center pieces at their wedding.  Izzy had been diligently painting each one of them.
Painting center pieces for her brother's wedding
One thing I have learned about my daughter, she can be very focused and single-minded.  She cranks out four or five of these bottles per hour, and they're beautiful!

3. When I was a little girl, I was in awe of my grandmother's super powers of being able to take an absolute mess and bring beauty and order to it!

Izzy has that same power and determination.  When she moved into her bedroom last year, she inherited a closet that had been stuffed with all kinds of things for decades!  It was the kind of closet that you kept the light out of and slammed the door tight so that nothing would get out of it.

Well, she tackled that closet this week and got it all cleaned out. She even ripped out the carpet herself and then Murphy's Oil Soaped the wood floor.  She threw away a ton of stuff too.

Sometimes, I'm just in awe of her!

4. Her demolition and cleaning skills are going to come in handy too because, Mr. Pete and I finally took the leap and bought a little house to fix up and try to flip!!  It's kind of scary but I think between us and our older kids, we have enough muscle and talent to make this a nice little house for some lucky family.  Stay tuned for rehab pictures!

Very proud of my diocese tonight!   To avoid something like this, the bishop has made a strict morality clause mandatory in the Catholic High Schools in the diocese!

  Diocese of Cleveland adds Morality Clause.
CLEVELAND, Ohio - Teachers at the five high schools run by the Cleveland Catholic diocese have agreed to sign the same expanded and detailed "morality clause" that elementary school teachers had to sign a year ago.
The new rules, outlined in the recently signed contract between the diocese and the Cleveland High School and Academy Lay Teachers Association (CHALTA), say a teacher can be fired for "certain speech or actions that are considered to be contrary to the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church."
Among the banned behaviors the contract spells out:
-       "Publicly supporting abortion, euthanasia, assisted suicide, embryonic stem cell research, in vitro fertilization, artificial insemination, surrogate parenthood, direct sterilization, or so-called homosexual or same-sex marriage or unions."
-       Having an abortion or helping another person have one.
-       Sex outside of marriage or living together without being married.
-       Viewing pornography or sharing any material, by email or texts, that is "lewd, indecent, sexually suggestive, or pornographic."
-       Unlawful use of drugs
In addition, teachers are now called "teacher-ministers" in the contract, a title that gives the church greater say over behavior.
In a letter to the teachers, Bishop Richard Lennon tells them that Catholic schools need to be "authentically Catholic" in every way.

6. I am very impressed with Suzanne Somers, and not just because at age 68, she is taking a turn on Dancing with the Stars!

I like the fact that as a lay woman, she is asking questions and not just accepting the standard medical answers as proven science - because many times it's NOT proven science!

She's just my idea of a good health care consumer - someone who takes responsibility for her own health care and uses medical doctors as resources, without abdicating her health to them. I think that's very brave.

My heart is breaking just a little bit tonight. Tomorrow morning my first born is moving 7 hours away to start his new job as a paramedic.
I'm very proud of him and I hope that he finds the fulfillment of his vocation that he is searching for. I also hope that after he marries this summer, that he and his wife will settle in and have a happy home life.

But as his mom, I'm still a little hurt and broken by it. I'm allowed.

This is the hard part of motherhood - the arms that were made to hold and nurture, have to open wide and let go. That starts when they become toddlers, and continues until they leave the home. But leaving with such a wide distance just seems to unnatural to me.

I'm grieving - for the fantasies I had of my children being close. No impromptu Sunday dinners, or birthday parties, or get togethers. No sitting around the fire in the summer time. And when the family does get together, someone else will be missing.  Theirs will be the grandchildren that get a card and a check, but won't really know who we are - not really. There will be visits. But it will never be the same.

It's just going to take me some time to wrap my head around it. Not an easy thing to do for a gal with deep-seated abandonment issues anyway - but I'll manage.



  1. My mother always said that it was my children she was closest to. When we visited or they visited we stayed in the same house. All of my other sibs live within 5 miles of her!
    I am excited to be within 45 minutes of my kids. Believe me, my grandchildren all know us very well :) It is all about supporting and loving them as they grow. Close knit does not have to be close together! May your son and his bride have a good life together.


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