Sunday, February 20, 2011


 This is my humble little plot of soil; my haven and place to go look at green things and whatever I plant each year, usually leftover Easter bulbs. A few years ago I saved a struggling mint plant from the Acme, and it voraciously took over the whole place, climbing all over everything with runners galore. We had a little taste of spring a few days ago, so I went out back and puttered about, pulling out all the dead (and surprisingly, some still alive), mint; and underneath was this! My bulbs are already trying to come up! This filled me with hope. Despite the cold, harsh, snow and ice filled winter we have had; despite the raging mint; despite the fact that the bulbs were not planted with any expertise, (or even any order); there they are! They bring so much excitement and anticipation. they are an assurance that Spring is indeed, on the way, though it be some weeks yet, these little sprouts trumpet that winter is not going to last forever!

Several years ago, I went to speak to a priest for a little spiritual direction session. I was a baby convert, still in a bad relationship, just a little prior to meeting Bob. I was in a charismatic prayer group, and this priest operated in those veins also. ( Don't get all spooked out, it was all done within Church guidelines, and he in particular is a level headed guy). I was talking about my life situation, and how I was trying to move forward, but many things were difficult and it was slow going. He prayed for me, and told me that he saw a picture of a frozen over field or garden. (in his mind-- again, no booga booga here) He said that it wasn't going to stay like that forever, but a thaw was coming and he saw little green shoots coming up. What a picture of hope! God knew I would so identify with that illustration, and that I needed to know the season I was in was not going to go on indefinitely. That priest often said things, either to me, or in homilies that were pivotal to my life. He doesn't even know the impact his words had; how his sensitivity and obedience to the Lord reached right out and helped this baby convert along.

We are going through a very rough weather period in our Church. It won't be like this forever. We can have hope, because we know the ending already. However, in a homily I heard recently, we were reminded that we pick up our crosses, not to lay them down each night, but to follow our Lord. Following where?  Calvary, and maybe even get up there and suffer and die with Him, before we get to rise with Him. I guess it really is going to be that time when we as Catholics have to set aside complacency, learn our faith, and live it.


  1. That was an excellent sermon, as per usual for that priest. I compare it to Father Check's sermon at Carmel about Mary, with her eyes riveted to the Cross. Both very holy priests cut from the cloth. I hope there's more of the fabric they came from left in the seminary!

  2. I'm always inspired when you speak of how you put straight your life. God bless. Yes there is hope for all.

    Including the end of this horrid Bulbs have not poked through yet up here. Can't wait. My crocuses should be coming really soon.

  3. Thank you Manny, for you kind words. Frankly, it was 1% me, being tired of screwing up my life, and 99% Jesus, using even my feeble attempts at reaching out to Him to lead me into His Church.
    And yeah, we just got another fresh snowfall, kids are off (why, I am not sure..a teeny two inches...we Philadelphians are snow-wimps--or perhaps it's shell shock from the bigger snowfalls we had earlier?)