A Journey Home - An Unassuming Catholic Blog
Medjugorje Blog - From this world to the next. He said to the woman: Your faith has saved you; go in peace. ~ Luke 7:50
By: Peace Pilgrim

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Friday, 12-May-2006 05:59 Email | Share | | Bookmark
May 1-7: Cover the Uninsured Week

Again this year, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops will co-sponsor “Cover the Uninsured Week,” from May 1-7, 2006. The purpose of this effort is to focus the attention of the nation on the almost 46 million Americans who lack any form of health insurance.

>> http://www.usccb.org/sdwp/aboutctuw.htm
>> Cover The Uninsured Website
>> Facts & Figures

Wednesday, 10-May-2006 16:59 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Sign of the Times - God Quips

Did you know in Hawai`i there are NO billboards? They are banned*. It's no accident that our home state is known for its scenic beauty and unmarred landscapes. When I first came to the mainland, I was turned off by the garish billboards. This is the only billboard that I'd like:

From a sign alongside a Texas highway (I35). Source: Catholic Spiritual Direction

Great quips:

My way is the highway. ~ God

Big bang theory? You've got to be kidding. ~ God

Follow Me. ~ God

I love you and you and you and you... ~ God

That "love thy neighbor" thing I meant it. ~ God

Tell the kids I love them. ~ God

Don't make me come down there. ~ God

Let's meet at my house Sunday before the game. ~ God

Loved the wedding invite me to the marriage. ~ God

Keep using my name in vain and I'll make rush hour longer. ~ God

Will the road you are on get you to my place? ~ God

Have your read my #1 best seller? There will be a test. ~ God

We need to talk. ~ God

What part of "Thou Shalt Not" didn't you uncdertand? ~ God

C'mon over and bring the kids. ~ God

Do you have any idea where you're going? ~ God

You think it's hot here? ~ God

Need directions? ~ God

*Other states with a no billboard ban: Alaska, Maine and Vermont.

Tuesday, 9-May-2006 03:05 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Top Ten Reasons to Come Back to the Catholic Church by LH Duquin

The Good Shepherd
who lays down his life for his sheep.
He would remain with us in the Eucharist.
View all 4 photos...
This is an excellent pamphlet! "With more people returning to church during this time of crisis as well as those heading back to church, you'll want to do everything you can to reach out to them. The Top 10 Reasons to Come Back to the Catholic Church pamphlet helps you convey that no matter how long a person has been away, they can always come home.

Top Ten Reasons to Come Back to the Catholic Church
by Lorene Hanley Duquin, author of the book, WHEN A LOVED ONE LEAVES THE CHURCH
Our Sunday Visitor 200 Noll Plaza, Huntington, Indiana
To order, click here.

You Can't Go Home Again is the title of a once famous novel by Thomas Wolfe. There is deep wistfulness in his novel. He believed that going home again is bound to be a great disappointment. Not so with the Catholic Church. No matter how long you've been away, you can always come home. You can start coming to Mass. You can become a part of a parish community. You can enter into the faith far more deeply than when you left.

Chances are, you're already feeling a strange inner pull. No matter what anyone else tells you, the spiritual longing you feel is God trying to draw you back to himself But God never forces. God only invites. Whether or not you return to the Catholic Church is a decision that only you can make.

There are as many reasons for coming back to the Church as there are people who left. While God is at the center of each person's decision to return the circumstances are varied. Here are ten reasons that influenced the decision of other people to return to the practice of the Catholic faith.

10. Because they want meaning in life. In the hustle of today's busy lifestyles, lots of people suddenly realize that their lives have lost a sense of meaning or purpose. They begin to ask themselves, "What is my life all about? Why do I do what I do?" There is widespread confusion in our culture with regard to morality and truth. The Catholic Church offers a beacon of light that gives meaning to our existence and leads to eternal life.

9. Because childhood memories surface. Some people say childhood memories of feeling connected to God surface in later life. They begin to ask themselves, "Is it possible to recapture that simplicity of faith? Can I ever really believe that God is watching out for me?" The secularization of our society leads people away from the spiritual side of themselves. The Catholic Church offers both religious and mystical experiences that feel the heart, the mind, the body, and the soul.

8. Because they made mistakes. Some people become burdened with the weight of accumulated sin. They want to get rid of the guilt of having hurt themselves or others. They begin to ask themselves, "Will God ever forgive me? Is there any way that I can start over with a clean slate?" You can always tell God that you're sorry. But if you want the complete assurance of God's forgiveness and, the grace to start again, the Catholic Church offers absolution in the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

7. Because they need to forgive others. Sometimes people hold on to anger and resentment toward individuals who have hurt them deeply. Maybe it was a family member or a friend. Maybe it was someone or something in the Church. "Will God ever forgive me?" Our modern culture condones and encourages anger and revenge. But hatred and bitterness are spiritual cancers that eat at the heart of a person. The Catholic Church provides the opportunity to seek God's help in forgiving others, even when the other person does not ask for forgiveness or does not deserve it. The ability to forgive is a gift that opens a person's heart more fully to God's love and peace.

6. Because they want to be healed. Some people carry deep spiritual wounds. They struggle with anger at God over bad things that happen - a terminal illness, a debilitating injury, a broken relationship, mental or emotional problems, an act of violence against an innocent person, an unexplainable accident, some natural disaster, the death of a loved one or some other deep disappointment. The Catholic Church cannot change these situations or explain why they happened. But there are people in the Church who can assist in the process of spiritual healing and help you get on with your life.

5. Because the Catholic Church has the fullness of truth and grace. Many people who leave the Catholic Church are blessed by the experience of worshiping for a while in another Christian denomination. But some people come back when they realize that Catholicism has the fullness of the truth and grace. The Catholic Church was not founded by a single reformer or historical movement. It is not fragmented by individual interpretation of Scripture. There are thousands of Christian denominations, but only one Catholic Church, which has been guided and protected by the Holy Spirit from generation to generation for some two thousand years.

4. Because they want their children to have a faith foundation. Some people return to the Catholic Church because they recognize that raising children in a culture that promotes "doing your own thing" can lead to disaster. Children need to experience the spiritual dimension of life. They need a structured system of belief and a firm moral foundation that goes beyond human logic and reasoning. People return because they want a solid foundation upon which their children can build their lives.

3. Because they want to be part of a faith community. Many people seek a sense of belonging. But community is more than just friendly people, good sermons, and interesting activities. A Catholic Christian community is a group of people who gather around the person of Jesus Christ to worship God and live in the light of the Holy Spirit. Catholics come together at Mass, in the Sacraments, and in parish activities to pray, to celebrate joys, to mourn losses, to serve others, to provide support, and to receive strength for daily life. A Catholic parish offers all of this - and much more - to people who recognize the importance of walking with others toward union with God.

2. Because they want to help other people. There are lots of opportunities within the secular world to volunteer. What's missing is the spiritual dimension that service within the Catholic Church provides. It's more than just a "feel good" activity. It's part of the "great commandment" (see Mark 12:28ff) to love God and to love your neighbor as yourself. In reaching out to others, Catholic volunteers become instruments of God's love. The Catholic Church offers opportunities to touch the lives of people at home or around the world.

The Eucharist

1. Because they hunger for the Eucharist. Many people come back to the Catholic Church because they feel an intense longing for the Eucharist. Sometimes it happens at a wedding, a funeral, a baptism, a First Communion, or a Confirmation. Sometimes it happens when people are alone or facing difficulties in life. They describe it as a deep hunger for the spiritual nourishment that comes when they receive the Body and Blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ. This hunger for the Eucharist triggers a recognition of the presence of Christ in other Sacraments, which draws them even more deeply into the practice of their faith. It is, without exception, the number one reason that people come back to the Catholic Church.

The Eucharist is the number one reason that people come back to the Church.

Most people discover that coming back to the Church is not an event as much as it is a process that involves a little pain, a little laughter, some thinking, some prayer, some discernment, and a lot of letting go. "My actual return to full participation in a parish took about three years after I felt the first longing," one person admitted.

And what do they get in return? The Catholic Church offers union with Jesus Christ in Scripture, in prayer, in the community of others, in the Eucharist, and in the other Sacraments. It offers spiritual support in good times and bad It offers divine wisdom that is thou- sands of years old. It offers meaning and purpose in this life and the promise of life after death. You'll know you are home when you begin to feel a deep sense of peace.

~ Source

>> Comments on above article: Free Republic

>> More pamphlets

>> Cor ad cor liquitor: Reasons to be Catholic

>> Kathy Coffey: Top Ten Reasons to Be Catholic

>> 8 Good Reasons for Becoming Catholic

Opening Page ~ Prayers ~ The Holy Rosary ~ Five Stones ~ Our Lady's Messages ~ Called: Medjugorje Pilgrimage ~ Called: Peace Pilgrim ~ Called: Dear Husband, T ~ Reasons to Return to the Catholic Church/Be Catholic ~ Medjugorje Pilgrims

Monday, 8-May-2006 12:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
MESSAGES: "...life is as passing as a flower."

Our Lady in the midst of magnolias (CNS/Catholic Courier)
The view outside my window
Here today; gone tomorrow.
"And do not forget, little children, that your life is as passing as a flower." ~ Our Lady of Peace, Medjugorje

Opening Page ~ Prayers ~ The Holy Rosary ~ Five Stones ~ Our Lady's Messages ~ Called: Medjugorje Pilgrimage ~ Called: Peace Pilgrim ~ Called: Dear Husband, T ~ Reasons to Return to the Catholic Church/Be Catholic ~ Medjugorje Pilgrims

Sunday, 7-May-2006 12:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
PRAYER: Father Mariusz Zajac - Also known as Father Walleye

Fr. Mariusz Zajac http://pikemasters.com/tsunami/
Whenever we are up in the mountains, out of the window, I will see a couple traipse out to the far side of the cove to fish. They're regulars. They'll be there in the early morning and fish until mid-day. This morning I paused and admired them for their patience. I am not there yet...

Later, I read an article over at Spirit Daily about a fisherman who prayed The Magnificat and landed a world-record-setting walleye fish. This led to another article that summarized what happened:

    "Let's face it. God smiled on Father Mariusz Zajac. On Jan. 4, 2005, the Catholic priest from Carrot River, Saskatchewan, Canada, was fishing in an ice house on the frozen waters of Tobin Lake. He was jigging a Five of Diamonds spoon tipped with a minnow. And he was praying "The Magnificat" (Luke 1:46-55) as he jigged... His prayers were answered with a bite from a huge walleye...The big walleye set the Saskatchewan provincial record for the species and also set the world ice fishing record for walleye."

It went on to tell about how fishing "was always a quiet time to talk to God and to sort through life's problems and seek His solutions" for this priest. Well, that did it and I was moved to write this note to this Polish priest, a fisherman of fish and humans, in Canada:

    Hello Father Mariusz Zajac,

    Your wonderful fish story was featured on the online spiritual news daily, SPIRIT DAILY:


    A bit of "googling" brought me to this forum. I tried clicking on the jigsaw puzzle link on the lead entry, but it is one of a kitten. Cute, but not you. So, I checked out the jigsaw puzzle site, then found a picture of you and your catch over at the pikemasters.com site, and proceeded to make another puzzle for you. Here it is:

    Fr. Mariusz Zajac - AKA, Father Walleye

    Like you, my brother Dean, is an avid fisherman and a state record holder for barracuda (77 lb. 0 oz. 3/22/92 Pacific Ocean, Olowalu, Maui). Here's a blurb on his catch from Hawaii Fishing News:

    I hope to share the Canticle of Mary (The Magnificat) with him when I see him at our family reunion in July. Worked for you, might work for him! Here it is for the other fisherpersons reading this who now wonder what your prayer was that day:

    Canticle of Mary - The Magnificat

    And Mary said: My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
    my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
    for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.
    From this day all generations will call me blessed:
    the Almighty has done great things for me,
    and holy is his Name.

    He has mercy on those who fear Him
    in every generation.

    He has shown the strength of his arm,
    he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

    He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,
    and has lifted up the lowly.

    He has filled the hungry with good things,
    and the rich he has sent away empty.

    He has come to the help of his servant Israel
    for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
    the promise he made to our fathers,
    to Abraham and his children for ever.

    Luke 1:46-55

    Thank you for sharing your story (and your grateful heart), as it has led me to making an album of puzzles that is intended to glorify Our Lord and Our Lady, while extending the reach of your Tsunami Victims Relief Fund!

    God bless you and may you blessed with many more catches. Most of all, may you be a world-record breaking fisher of men.

    In God's Light, D / Peace Pilgrim

>> AVE MARIA: Children Relief Foundation of Father Walleye
>> Tsunami Fishermen Relief Fund
>> Gratitude to Mary

Opening Page ~ Prayers ~ The Holy Rosary ~ Five Stones ~ Our Lady's Messages ~ Called: Medjugorje Pilgrimage ~ Called: Peace Pilgrim ~ Called: Dear Husband, T ~ Reasons to Return to the Catholic Church/Be Catholic ~ Medjugorje Pilgrims

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