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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Wednesday, 14-Jun-2006 16:15 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Jesus Accepting His Cross

 
Like you, I've had my crosses to bear.

Many saints and holy people throughout the centuries have foretold that in the latter days the Mystical Body will relive the Passion of its Head, suffer the betrayal of Judas and be fastened to the same cross as Our Lord Himself.

This prophecy was fulfilled in our lives. I'm usually intuitively smart about people, but my husband and I were scammed, lied to, stolen from, backstabbed, and betrayed by people we trusted implicitly. Nothing wounds more deeply than betrayal by those we've come to love. We could not fathom why or how we had merited such treatment from those we held so dear.

The aphorism "No good turn goes unpunished" suddenly seemed to hold truth. We were at great risk of having our hearts hardened, if not destroyed, and we knew it. The wounds could have festered indefinitely, failing to heal completely or at all, but Our Lady came with her gentle invitation. She lead us to her Son through the Rosary. Our Lord Jesus Christ taught me how to handle the situation. He too was lied to, betrayed and stolen from. He "retaliated" with "Forgive them, Father, for they know not what they do." What a God! He would have wanted Judas to be in Heaven with Him. I want to be just like Our Lord.

Not wishing to negate my love for these people, I carried it with me to Medjugorje. I prayed for them there. It was Our Lady's embrace and the light of God's love that lifted the darkness. I continue to pray for these people daily. I would like them to be in Heaven.

Two years later, I realize these once dear friends who behaved like my worst enemies did us the most wonderful favor. I now understand the wisdom of praying for your enemies. In God's infathomable way, He has allowed me to see that they may be our best friends; because of their actions, I turned to Our Lord and Our Lady.

In Medjugorje, Our Lady and Our Lord provided the closure that was so essential for the recovery of our heart wounds. He restored our hope and beliefs that "No good deed goes unrewarded" and "One good turn deserves another." We would continue to give our best to others, any way. As we realized, in the end, it's never between us and humans, but ALWAYS between us and God.

As Jesus accepted His Cross, I am accepting mine.


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


Wednesday, 14-Jun-2006 12:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Last Call for Prayer Petitions - Need prayer?

25th Anniversary: Prayer Petitions / Intentions / Requests
Jesus came to preach and to heal. He instructed us to..."pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man has great power in its effects." ~James 5:16


Greetings, Prayer Family!

I will going home to Hawai'i for a wedding, but I will be back next week in time to catch that plane to Frankfurt then on to Medjugorje for the Anniversary.

Between trips, I will be printing up your prayer petitions, folding them and stapling them into links, then fashioning a lei to wear to the sites that Our Lady has appeared or will be appearing. It's going to be quite a lei, as I received almost a 100 petitions from you.

Those of you who will be there, you'll recognize me as the pilgrim who is tripping all over her long, long lei! (Not to worry... if it is too long, I'll just make a second one for my husband to wear. He's from Hawai'i, he's cool about wearing a colorful lei)

So if you haven't sent me your petitions, feel free to do so. It is truly a privilege and an honor for me to do so. And I know Our Lady will be delighted to hear from you.

God bless each and every one of you!

Aloha,
Peace Pilgrim

P.S. "Everyone" knows Aloha means hello, goodbye and love. But did you know its REAL meaning which is deeply spiritual? Kinda like "goodbye" which is derived from the words, "God be with you." The REAL meaning of Aloha is that it is a blessing that places you in the Presence of the Breath of God. (Alo is presence and Ha is Divine Breath). ALOHA to you!


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, 5-Jun-2006 00:35 Email | Share | | Bookmark
MEME: 100 Things About Me - An Exercise in Transparency

An Exercise in Transparency
Dogs meet dolphin; dolphin meets dogs.
Brown County, IN
View all 20 photos...
I received this meme some time ago. Up to now, I've procrastinated its perpetuation. From what I gather, bloggers have come up with a list of 100 things about themselves as a means for others to learn things about a blogger they otherwise would never know. I'm kind of late to this party, but what the heck, here's my contribution to this meme's painful proliferation. I choose to view this exercise as an invitation to deepen self-knowledge in the spirit of St. Catherine of Siena:

1. Although I was never a rebel, I marched to a different drummer.

    You are forewarned: I have never met another like myself. I'm not the norm, but really, who is? I'm weird, different, and one of a kind. And so are you. He made me uniquely me, and you, uniquely, you. Vive la difference!

    In a room of a hundred people, there is only one with the personality of an INFJ. That would be me. 1/100 is just 1% of the population. A teensy minority. We INFJs are rare birds. As an example, Carl Jung is an INFJ. Not everyone can understand his theories, experiences and perceptions. I do.

    I've been described as bohemian; I think it was meant to be a compliment. And maybe not. I was born too late to be a hippie, but I ascribe to some of that generation's values: peace, love, take care of our planet, and people before money. You might say I'm a bit of a non-conformist. Now my biggest desire is to be totally conformed to God's Will. "Not my will, but Yours be done." ~Luke 22:42


2. I was born in a hospital located just below the beautiful Rainbow Falls in Hilo, Hawai'i on Saturday, September 29, 1951 at 4:53 pm, HST, the Feast day of Archangels Michael, Rafael and Gabriel.


Rainbow Falls, Hilo, Hawaii

    Very few people know this birthday-archangels connection, yet over the years, the gift that people will most often give me is angel-related. My office and home are filled with angel figurines, statuettes and artwork. And yes, I believe in angels and I have a keen appreciation for my Guardian Angel, who has watched over me well.

    "In the name of the Lord God of Israel, may Michael be at my right hand; and Gabriel at my left; before me, Uriel; and behind me, Rafael; and above my head, the Divine Presence of God." ~A prayer

    As for waterfalls, I love them. They are a natural high. Few sounds, sights, and experiences in nature are more soothing than falling waters. Perfect for harried souls who wish to unwind, negative ions that relax, refresh and re-energize are produced by waterfalls. I've been known to take long hikes to them or take long drives many miles out of the way to seek them out, just as I did Kravice Falls in Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina.



Kravice Falls in Medjugorje

3. I am a middle child.

    Was I a cute baby? I have no idea. I have no baby pictures, not even a one. My mom says I was, but you know mothers. I was sandwiched between two sisters, my older sister, Sandy, and my younger sister, Joan. Our brother Dean was the "caboose". They all live in Hawai'i with their families. We not only get along, we genuinely like each other. I'm the "independent" kid of the brood and flew the coop early. I am the only sibling living away from the islands. They've all come over to visit and I cherish their visits
.

4. I was blessed with parents who raised us with life's more important lessons, which included respecting parents and elders, good morals and ethics, the importance of education and to be courteous, hardworking, and humble, as well as a a large extended family.

    I've had 10 biological aunts and uncles and 9 more by marriage (their spouses). I have at least 24 cousins, three nieces and two nephews; I think kindly of every one of them. No bad apples. I am "Aunty D" also to countless others who have adopted me into their lives.


5. In our entire extended family, there has been only two divorces. My parents' and my oldest cousin's.

    My siblings and I weathered the ups and downs of our parents' rocky marriage. They were two good people who were incompatible. It was not a marriage made in Heaven. They went their separate ways when I was 31, while studying to be a doctor. Even as an adult, the experience was traumatic, painful and scarring. I can -- and yet I can't -- imagine what little children go through when their parents divorce... <sniff!> So far, all four of us siblings are still married to our original spouses.


6. I love and adore every member of my hanai 'ohana (adopted family).


Our 'ohana: my husband and me with our adopted sister, Sue; Samara and Jonathan, who are parents of the G-kids, Austin and Makena (still in utero in this picture); Alana and Jeremy (taking the picture); and our dogs (Shelties), 'Oli and Freddy.

7. I adore children, little monsters though they may sometimes be. I especially adore my G-kids, Austin and Makena, who are angels. Of course, being their G-Ma, maybe I am just a tad bit biased..


8. I grew up in an idyllic village of about a thousand people called Pahoa on the island of Hawai'i.

    It took a village to raise me and I am grateful for every bit of my rural upbringing. There were about 25 kids who were my age. Most of us went to nursery school and through every class together up to 8th grade. Although I was the littlest kid, I led the class as class president. I was also picked last for sports teams.

    A few years ago, I wrote about my old stomping grounds and also wrote this tribute to one of our classmates.

    I left my village at the young age of 13 to attend a college preparatory boarding high school (Mid-Pacific Institute) on another island, O'ahu, coming home only at Christmas and during the summers.


9. I grew up without television for most of my childhood.

    Our little village claims the distinction of having the oldest movie theater west of the Rockies. I still prefer movies to television.

    I refuse to watch any movie that doesn't have a happy, optimistic ending. I still haven't seen THE PASSION. Yes, I know the Resurrection is the ultimate of happy endings...but I'm not there yet with the torture, pain and sorrow. As for violent and horror movies, those are automatically nixed.


10. I watch very little TV, and yet will still pay for digital cable so we can have EWTN.


11. No matter how many times I've watched it, I still cry at the end of "It's a Wonderful Life." Hallmark commercials also turn on the waterfalls. I can be such a sob sister!


"...every time a bell rings, an angel gets his wings."


12. My mother worked full-time at the village post office, and so my paternal grandmother became my primary mother-figure and role model.

    Satsuma Nishimura Hayashi, my "O-bachan" which is "Honorable Grandmother" in Japanese, lived in the mother's-in-law cottage behind my parents' house. I stayed with her during the weeknights (weekends were spent with my family at our beachhouse). She was my biggest advocate, and although I didn't realize it at the time, she was also my best friend.

    Her ancestors were among the first Catholics in Japan in the days of St. Francis Xavier (1500s); many of them were martyred. I learned this "family secret" from my father in the last years of his life. I like to think our ancestors had something to do with our conversions. I know my grandmother did, for hers was a deep, abiding spirituality. She taught me to pray by her example. The sun did not rise or set without her dedicated prayers and chants. Loving Kamisama (God) as she did, she was a tremendous blessing in my life as she passed her spirituality and that love on to me.


13. My grandmother taught me by her example that power, money and status are not necessary for happiness.


Satsuma Nishimura Hayashi, my beloved grandmother and spiritual mentor.

    She was a tremendously loving soul with an unswerving faith. She taught me the values of faith, hard work, simplicity, people before money, non-materialism, peacefulness, kindness and abiding love. She also made the best silver dollar pancakes (mini-pancakes), slathered with real butter and honey from the hive. I loved her so. God bless her. She is loved today even more and I keep her in my daily prayers.


14. With shoulders thrown back and head erect, I stand barely 5 feet 2 inches tall (short?); I'm shorter than my mom, taller than both my grandmothers who were less than 5' .

    I wear one contact lens. My hair is wavy and unruly if I don't blow dry it straight. I've broken one bone (collarbone)when as an infant, I rolled off the sofa. As a kid, I had freckles. As for stupid human tricks, I can arch one eyebrow, wiggle an ear, flare my nostrils, flip my eyelids, tie a cherry stem into a knot with my tongue, curl my tongue into a U-shape when I stick it out (a dominant genetic trait) and twist my tongue one way, but not the other. I can also turn a plastic straw inside out, using my front teeth.


15. My earthly mother's name is Mary. My sister's middle name is Marie. Named for my mother, my niece's middle name is Mary. The choice of this most popular and enduring of all female Christian names wouldn't be remarkable if we were Christians, but we were a family of nominal Buddhists. In 2005, I chose Mary as my confirmation name in honor of Mary, the Blessed Mother, who is my heavenly mother.

    MARY Gender: Feminine Usage: English, Biblical Pronounced: MER-ee

    Usual English form of Maria, which was the Latin form of the New Testament Greek names Μαριαμ (Mariam) or Μαρια (Maria) (the spellings are interchangeable), which were from the Hebrew name מִרְיָם (Miryam). The meaning is not known for certain, but there are several theories including "sea of bitterness", "rebelliousness", and "wished for child". However it was most likely originally an Egyptian name, perhaps derived in part from mry "beloved" or mr "love".This is the name of several New Testament characters, most importantly Mary the virgin mother of Jesus, and Mary Magdalene.

    My English name means "tenderly beloved" or "little darling". My Japanese name is "Leiko"; it means "beautiful child". My Hawaiian name is "Leilani"; it means "heavenly garland"; the Rosary is a heavenly garland of roses/prayers. The deeper, spiritual meaning of Leilani is "heavenly beloved child." I have always felt loved by family and friends and most of all, these days, by Our Lord and Our Lady.


16. I was once a Girl Scout and loved every bit of that joyful experience roughin' it.


Waipi'o Valley, Island of Hawai'i

    We were way ahead of our time with our rough and tumble "Survivor" experiences as kids camping down in Waipi'o Valley. We lived in the wild with our backpacks, pup tents, pocket knives and matches. No running water. Drinking from open streams. No bathrooms. Doing our business in trench latrines. Campfires. S'Mores. Hawaiian ghost stories. Showering under waterfalls. Building a shelter. Lots of beach. Lots of wilderness. What a blast!


17. In high school, I was on the synchronized swim team (before the rest of the world knew what that was), in the choir, and modern-danced; I enjoyed them although I was at the height of mediocrity in all three activities.

    After school, I worked as the chemistry teacher's lab assistant even if I had no interest in science back then. It was to be preparation for the science classes I was to take later in my life.


18. I went off to college and kept going and going and going for 14 years.



    At age 17, I flew off to college at Indiana University (IU), Bloomington (psychology and fine arts) when Bobby Knight was the basketball coach and Mark Spitz was the swim star. At 21, I went to graduate school at the University of Hawai`i, Manoa (psychology). At 25, I was called to be a doctor after a near-death experience, went back for premed classes (Calculus, Organic Chemistry, Biological Sciences, Physics) then on to doctoral studies in Southern California in a (then) male-dominated health field. At age 32, I was in private practice. With God, ALL things are possible.


19. I can out-hula hoop just about anybody.

    I'm a total klutz when it comes to ball sports like tennis and basketball. The only exception is billiards; I once got an A in a billiards class that fulfilled a physical education requirement. I'm a natural at hugging. I think I could win a kissing marathon. I'm a bit of a love bug.


20. I don't seek out leadership roles, but somehow I get tapped for them, unsolicited.

    In the process I've crashed through a glass ceiling or two. Leadership, however, is basically not my thing. I’m not a born leader, but I’m not a blind follower either. I’m a party of one. Put simply: I don't like to be bossed, and I don't like to boss others.


21. I had the good fortune of terrific boyfriends between the ages of 12 and 20.

    My first boyfriend was a junior in high school. I was in eighth grade. It was very sweet and innocent. I've been proposed to three times. Once I met my husband, I quit playing the field. The third time was the charm. I still think kindly of every one of my ex-bfs. Not a girly-girl, I very much enjoyed their male company, conversation and perspective. They were very respectful and gentlemanly when I was not ready to commit or wouldn't put out, if you get my drift.


22. I still miss the stromboli sandwiches at Indiana University.

    Young and idealistic, I was an agnostic then, very much into Ayn Rand's writings. Now as a Catholic Christian, I intend to return to Indiana, overnight at the Student Union Hotel and dine in the historic Tudor Room, then spend a retreat week at St. Meinrad in beautiful Brown County in the fall.

    Gentle Reader, if you're ever in Bloomington, go to Nick's on Kirkwood Avenue and enjoy a stromboli sandwich for me. It's a toasted sub stuffed with small pieces of crumbled sausage, cheese, sauce and sliced onions, always served with bread and butter pickles on the side. There's nothing that comes close to it anywhere else.




23. I am lactose intolerant.

    If the milk is processed as in ice cream, yogurt, and hard cheeses, I'm fine. Soft cheeses like Brie and Camembert give me full-blown migraines. Oy vey!



24. I've had three close brushes with death.

    The first, during a lifesaving drill in a churning sea.

    The second, in a car wreck when I was in college. I was in the passenger death seat; I survived it, unscathed except for a glass cut.

    The last was a classic near-death experience while in graduate school; I traveled at warp speed down a tunnel, was immersed in a supernatural light and felt an unworldly peace. I consider myself Heaven's reject as I was returned to Earth. God wasn't done with me. Previously agnostic, I returned a different person and dedicated my life to His Will. He then spun my life around by 180 degrees.



25. I have experienced calamities: earthquakes, the aftermath of a tsunami, a hurricane, two volcanoes that destroyed both sets of grandparents' homes and my father's livelihood (he rebounded twice and taught me to never, never, never give up).

26. I saw the Northern Lights, also called the Aurora Borealis, when I was in Indiana. Awesome!

27. I inherited my best physical feature from my dad: dainty feet.



    Too bad they're always covered up with shoes, socks or booties. I identified well with Cinderella with her small feet. My shoe size is between 4 1/2 and 5. That glass slipper would've fit me perfectly.


28. Black, black, black is the color of my true love's hair, so goes the Applachian song. I have black hair, these days with occasional silver strands.

    My father and his mother both were mostly dark-haired to the end of their days. My eyes are deep brown and not your typical Asian slants.


29. I have never had much of a great love for clothing.

    A fashion maven, I'm not. I dislike shopping so when I finally do go, I get it over with it and indulge my neglected vanity with a vengeance.


30. I'm a "function over form" kind of gal.



    I prefer baggy clothes, stretchy pants and comfortable sneakers or mules. I dislike wearing heels, but I sillily wear them anyhow for work; I like dressing up for those I serve. My favorite clothes is my comfy Cloud 9 flannel pajamas. I could live in them all day. I am not into jewelry. Less is more.


31. I'm a bit of a reverse snob.

    No Cartier watch, no trinket or bauble from Tiffany's, no Louis Vuitton luggage, no Doone and Bury? handbag, and no BMW for me. Thanks, but no thanks to fancy-schmancy. Years ago, someone very dear to me gifted me with a Gucci keychain. It remains tucked away in the deep recesses of my underwear drawer. I can't bring myself to use it. It's just not me.

    Is being a reverse snob any different than being a snob? Not really. Each involves putting down another. Whether people measure their lives by material milestones or not is none of my business. I'll try to avoid being any kind of snob, period. Smack me if you catch me being snobbish.


32. Celebrities hold little allure for me.



33. I am a true-blue friend.

    My husband is my very best friend; and I, his. I don't go to bed mad. And I don't hold grudges. He is God's best gift to me. Just when I decided that 30 was a good age to marry, I met my husband at age 20 and my boyfriend days were over. It was love at first sight. I was (and still am) a hopeless romantic, old-fashioned enough to want to be wooed and courted by a courteous, chivalrous gentleman. Prayer works. I prayed for him. God made sure we met. We married at age 22 (he's 20 days older than me) after a slow and steady two year courtship. We honeymooned in Kona, Kaua`i, and California.

    The word believe means to "be in love". You know when you're in love; you treat your beloved as a gift, a treasure, and as the best thing that has ever happened to you. My husband and I believe in each other. We love to spend time together and when we're not, we think of one another often. We want the best for one another and that is sainthood.

    After at least the gazillionth sight and over 30 years of marriage, it's still love, only deeper, warmer and wiser.


34. I am a country girl, through and through.

    City energy depletes me. Country energy revives me. And so we have two not-so-big homes, one is in the suburbs where I work and the other is a cabin in the mountains, alongside a lake.

    Our cabin is my saving grace, my refuge and an Amazing Grace! Did I mention daffodils and lilacs in the spring? Hummingbirds and butterflies in the bee balm and kayaking in midsummer? Icicles in winter and snowdrifts across the frozen lake? Geese, coots, ducks, eagles? And mellow, nip-in-the-air leaf-turning autumns? In short: four seasons!


35. So why do I stay in the suburbs of a sprawling metropolis?

    "Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life." God chose my job; I just did His Bidding. Over time, I did come to love my job, once I got the hang of it.



    These days, I am deeply in love with my work, seeing it as an opportunity to do God's Work. I love the people I work with and the patients I serve. I can't do enough for them! After 23 years, I thoroughly enjoy helping others and I relish the challenge of giving them the best of me. Like the priesthood, mine was a a Calling which involved breaking out of my comfort zone; six years of incredible sacrifices; doing the "impossible"; and the praying of the verse, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" to buoy me up.

    I am grateful that I responded to His Call. I ended up going to college for 14 years. Was it worth it? You betcha, and I'm not talking money.


37. I've had my crosses to bear.

    Many saints and holy people throughout the centuries have foretold that in the latter days the Mystical Body will relive the Passion of its Head, suffer the betrayal of Judas and be fastened to the same cross as Our Lord Himself.

    This prophecy was fulfilled in our lives. I'm usually intuitively smart about people, but my husband and I were scammed, lied to, stolen from, backstabbed, and betrayed by people we trusted implicitly. Nothing wounds more deeply than betrayal by those we've come to love. We could not fathom why or how we have merited such treatment from those we held so dear.

    The aphorism "No good turn goes unpunished" suddenly seemed to hold truth. We were at great risk of having our hearts hardened, if not destroyed, and we knew it. The wounds could have festered indefinitely, failing to heal completely or at all, but Our Lady came with her gentle invitation. She lead us to her Son through the Rosary. Our Lord Jesus Christ taught me how to handle the situation. He too was lied to, betrayed and stolen from. He "retaliated" with "Forgive them, Father, for they know not what they do." What a God! He would have wanted Judas to be in Heaven with Him. I want to be just like Our Lord.




    Not wishing to negate my love for these people, I carried it with me to Medjugorje. I prayed for them there. It was Our Lady's embrace and the light of God's love that lifted the darkness. I continue to pray for these people daily. I would like them to be in Heaven.

    Two years later, I realize these once dear friends who behaved like my worst enemies did us the most wonderful favor. I now understand the wisdom of praying for your enemies. In God's infathomable way, He has allowed me to see that they may be our best friends; because of their actions, I turned to Our Lord and Our Lady.

    In Medjugorje, Our Lady and Our Lord provided the closure that was so essential for the recovery of our heart wounds. He restored our hope and belief that "No good deed goes unrewarded" and "One good turn deserves another." We would continue to give our best to others, any way. As we realized, it's never between us and humans, but ALWAYS between us and God.


38. If I believe in what I'm talking about, I have no fear.

    I can easily be a shy, quiet and retiring person. Being so is comfortable and safe for an INFJ like me. Somewhere along the way, I broke through my shell. I've taught at the college-level at the University of Hawai'i and at my professional school alma mater. I also do a lot of public speaking to community groups as well as lecturing at my alma mater on preventative health. While I prefer working with people on a one-to-one basis, the word on disease prevention has to get out faster than on the one-on-one and out I go. It's become my lay apostolate.


39. I am a flawed human being.

    I can be impatient. I can be long-suffering. I can be gullible. I can be perfectionistic. I have been accused of being too trusting (I agree; sucker is written on my forehead in invisible ink); too honest for my own good; and overly generous (everything is by God's Providence and I like to spread it around whenever I can).


40. I'm the original Spice Girl.

    I'm addicted to fiery flavors and "good pain": wasabi (and its head rush), horseradish, Sriracha sauce (hot and vinegary with a garlic kick), and Scorned Woman -- "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned" -- a chili sauce with lots of pepper and a nice smoked habanero/jalapeno pepper bite. Mm-mm good. Such tears of joy! Religious Experience salsa and hot sauce is an experience I have yet to try.



    Sushi, the perfect food with its briny freshness and luxuriant textures, is my favorite. I savor every bite. I also love seaweed, raisins, bleu cheese, kim chee, okra, natto (fermented soy beans -- eeeyou!), poi, pesto, salsa, dill pickles and beets.

    In general, I eat healthily, but I have my weak moments when it comes to ice cream, chips, scones. I am a fiend for fresh salads. In college, on limited resources, I lived on crappy food like Swanson's Fried Chicken Mini-Dinners, macaroni and cheese, ramen, and cheap fast foods. Yuck! I'm making up for those years of malnutrition. As an income-producing adult, I much prefer nutritional fresh and whole foods and home-cooked food, rather than processed foods and dining out -- and so does my body.


41. I am a mean baker of pies, cookies, cakes and blueberry/jello cream cheese desserts.

    My maternal grandparents had a bakery and their baking skills rubbed off. I love to bake. Problem is, I end up eating too much of what I bake. Mucho calorias. Then I'll really be in shape. Round is a shape.


42. I am also rather fond of ice cold beer in a frosty glass.

    That just evoked fond memories of a hot summer's day on the island of Capri. Ahhh...ok, I'm back. The occasional glass of Merlot is also quite nice. Plain water is my favorite everyday beverage.


43. I dislike driving.

    My car is vintage 1991 with 40,000 miles at this writing. I hope to keep it until it is at least 20 years old. Then I'll get a four-wheel hybrid SUV; I would love it to be purple. I've never had a ticket. I like hanging out around the speed limit and I never "drive faster than my guardian angel can fly."

    I am your typical Asian driver. Now aren't you glad I don't like to drive?

    As much as I dislike driving, I love biking. I have two bikes: a mountain bike up in the mountains and a road bike for the suburbs.


44. I am not comfortable in crowds, but I generally like people.

    I dislike cocktail parties. I am not a party animal, but I will go to be sociable and I will have fun. I can be a gregarious introvert . Basically, I'm a "come over for dinner" kind of person.


45. I am not filthy rich, but neither am I dirt poor. I'm solidly middle-class.

    I don’t believe in running a credit card balance. Money matters elude me. As long as the bills get paid on time, I'm happy and I'm not one to wastefully rack up the bills. I have several different cards, but the entire balance is paid off each month. Money does not burn a hole in my pocket.


46. I don't like borrowing stuff from people.

    I'd rather buy a book than borrow it from the library (thank goodness for Amazon). Since I was a kid, I will do everything to avoid borrowing money or owing money to anyone. I'd rather starve...and I did a lot of that in school.


47. Day by day...

    I set aside one day a week to learning about God, studying Him and His Word, reading spiritual books, and spending time with Him in silence (listening to Him, for a change).

    I dedicate three days a week serving Him in my work, which is my personal apostolate and ministry.

    I spend one day a week doing "good works" that I am magnificently obsessed not to divulge.

    Most Saturdays, I deal with the mundane -- getting chores done, doing laundry, running errands, and playing catch-up. I reward my efforts with gardening, hiking and biking.

    Sunday is a day of prayer, reflection, and quiet, reading, and for family gatherings.


48. I am a multi-tasker.

    I don't like to even waste a minute being idle. I like to have EWTN on while I sit at the computer, and even then I usually have a book handy to flip through while webpages load. I've never had a bon bon in my life and don't plan to.


49. I choose: Peace. Tranquillity. Calmness. Untroubledness. Quietude. Harmony. Serenity.

    I could swear like a sailor, but I don't. I could fight like a fierce warrior, but I don't. I say: "Peace be with you!" And you say: "And also with you!"


50. Now Scrabble, I like!

    Other favorites: Pictionary, Trivial Pursuit, Boggle, Cranium, Outburst. My mother loves to go to Las Vegas to play the slot machines as do many islanders. I dislike Las Vegas VERY MUCH. I am a bit of an empath and its jangly, desperate energy zaps me. I dislike playing cards, whether with others or by myself. Who would play Solitaire when you can have a good read, take a walk, play with dogs... or pray?


51. A cadaver in my anatomy class made me quit smoking.

    He died of lung cancer. His lungs were black and he wasn't that old, dark-haired with a salt-and-pepper mustache and beard. I was a light smoker, particularly enjoying a satisfying smoke after dinner which served as "the period to my meal". We, my husband and I quit, cold turkey. I thank that man for donating his body to science. He may have saved our lives.


52. I think old people are beautiful.

    They’re classic quality. The most amazing people, close and from afar, that I know have been old people, including my grandparents; my neighbors, Trudy and Ed; Mr. Edward Diloreto; Mother Teresa, Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XIV; Dr. Murray Schofield, Dr. Nicholas Steuermann, 'Da Hawaii Club members...



53. I love critters, and most especially, dogs and dolphins.

    When I go home to Hawai'i, I make it a point to commune with the dolphins and if time permits, swim with them in the wild. I could never be a hunter. I still get teary-eyed, thinking about the loss of Bambi's mother to a hunter's bullet.




54. As a child, I found an abandoned black puppy and brought him home.

    He was sick and in spite of my efforts to doctor him, I couldn't save the little guy. In his last hours, he was a very loved and wanted puppy, hugged and cuddled. My brother and I laid him to rest in the rain forest next to our house. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. When I retire, whenever that happens, I will be a dog rescuer.


55. Looks are deceiving. I may look girly, but I am still a tomboy at heart.

    Three cousins and the neighbor kids who were my age were boys. I much preferred climbing trees, exploring our corner of the island on my bike, going camping, swimming and lifesaving, and skateboarding. To this day, I much prefer talking about and doing guy-stuff than girly-stuff. Like hiking, skiing, gardening, biking and talking about gadgets, cameras, computers.


56. Still, I can be Susie Homemaker.

    In my formative years I managed to learn how to sew, knit, crochet, embroider, cook, bake, do laundry, iron, take care of babies, and run an efficient and clean household. I rarely cook. I know how, but my husband is so much better at it. (Yes, I am blessed.)


57. My eyes shudder at clutter.

    I subscribe to "A place for everything; everything in its place", although I have my messy moments. Moments, sometimes hours, rarely days. My grandmother lived in monastic austerity and I liked it.


58. I have lucid dreams.

    I've had a recurring nightmare where I suddenly remember -- in a panicked cold sweat -- that I've completely forgotten about one or two of my classes. I have to snap myself out of this terror by reminding myself that if this were true, I wouldn't have graduated, I wouldn't have passed my boards, I wouldn't be in practice, etc.


59. In a dream, I received a stock tip from my father after he died.

    We bought the stock (fuel cells) and lo and behold, it went up!

    The last time he visited me in a dream I saw him in a very gray place; I didn't know about Purgatory at the time. He was on the up escalator with a smile on his face. I took it as a sign that he was on his way to Heaven. I pray for him daily, as I do for our grandparents and our favorite aunt and uncle.


60. I only learned about the Holy Souls in Purgatory two years ago.

    I pray for them every day at daily Mass and/or when saying the Rosary, especially those for whom no one prays. I really love doing so. I ask them to pray for me/us. It is a very synergistic relationship. I think I'm going to meet a multitude of friends when I cross over. Should you die before me and make it to Purgatory (few are so pure as to make a straight shot to Heaven), I will be praying for you too.


61. I love books, reading, and words.

    As far back as I can remember, I've had an intense curiosity and inquisitiveness. Reading provides the satisfaction I crave and so I am an insatiable reader. Without books, I am restless, bored and frustrated. I was tested and identified as gifted in fifth grade. I think that outcome had everything to do with my love for reading. I don't think it has so much to do with gray matter.

    I'm grateful that the body of Catholic literature is HUGE! I find the challenges and surprises of delving and digging deep rewarding. What I read shakes up my preconceptions and obliges me to reconsider afresh my ideas. I find Catholicism endlessly rich, its practicing faithful gracious and delightful to read about. To me, reading, breathing and living in the faith greatly amplifies my connection with The Holy.

    I live to learn and I learn to live. I enjoy letting my brain go and giving my non-linear thought processes free rein. Plato's words describes me well: "I know not how I may seem to others, but to myself I am but a small child wandering upon the vast shores of knowledge, every now and then finding a small bright pebble to content myself with."


62. I'm a techy (as well as a geek, nerd, dork).


The Osborne Personal Computer

    I enjoy gadgetry. I wrote my first office newsletter on one of the first personal computers called the Osborne (Mahalo, Wayne!)

    The Internet is a dream come true. I learned to how to pray the Rosary from online sources. My acquisition of knowledge of the faith and my eventual conversion were greatly accelerated because of the 'Net. Google is a Godsend.


63. Reading is breathing to me.

    I didn’t have a security blanket or stuffed animal as a child. I slept with my books. Under my pillow, alongside me, and under the mattress. I can read non-stop all through the night. I still carry a book in my handbag at all times.

    Erasmus once said, “When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.” He knew me well. My favorite store is a bookstore. My favorite gift to give and receive is a bookstore or Amazon gift card.


64. When a film based on a book comes out, or a movie remake is released, I am impelled to read the book and/or see the original film version, regardless of whether or not I plan to see the remake.


65. I was never an early riser. Now I wake up at the crack of dawn.

    So much to read and see, so little time.


66. I sleep like a baby.

    Usually, I fall asleep as soon as my head hits the pillow. I sleep on my side. I love to catnap to recharge my batteries. So refreshing.


67. I rarely will watch the news on TV or read the newspaper, except for the occasional Sunday paper.

    I figure if it's important, I'll read it on Yahoo News, Spirit Daily or from the prayer group. No news is good news.


68. My pet peeves: poisonously sarcastic people; people who freeload; stingy people; slow connections; smartasses; jury duty; whiners. I hate mosquitoes.

    Ok, ok, so now I'm the whiner. I'll quit.


69. I've travelled to a bunch of states and a fair number of countries.

    Click here. I don't like flying, but I stoically do so to get to where I want to be. Being an airline hostess would be my worst nightmare.


70. I'd give up these worldly attachments in a New York minute to be with Our Lord. In the meantime, He indulges me with the following:

    I love baths! I love foot massages. I love candlelight. I love cornflower blue and any shade of purple. I love to dance - hula, waltz, fox trot, etc. I love BBQ potato chips. I love Del Monte catsup. I love bitter chocolate. I love our priests and our parishes. I love real mail -- letters in envelopes and picture postcards.


71. My taste in music is simple - anything that is peaceful, harmonious, and beautiful.

    I dislike anything loud -- loud music, loud people, loud colors. I carry earplugs with me at all times.

    I am very picky about what I listen to. I especially like classical (Mozart, Bach, Vivaldi) and Hawaiian music (Keali'i Reichel, IZ, Moe Keale). And Josh Groban. I sing, but not well. The melody, however, is in my heart; the harmony, in my life. I'm a magnificent bathroom performer. Everywhere else, I lip-synch, so as not to offend. I do sing in church, softly, as St. Augustine said, ""Qui cantat, bis orat" ("A person who sings prays twice").


72. I once played the clarinet, but not well.

    I had a chance to take piano lessons in high school, but I passed on it. I could kick myself. These days, it's a harp. I enjoy just plinking its strings, absorbing its sounds and visualizing Heaven
.

73. During thunderstorms I imagine that God is bowling.

    I "high-five" Him whenever He gets a strike (sound of thunder).



74. I detest politics. I distrust most (not all) politicians.



75. So I've been told: Nobody can lie to my face or hurt me and get away with it.

    Why? Because, unbeknownst to me, a kahuna woman, a respected native Hawaiian spiritual adept and teacher, put a reflective, protective dome around me when I was a little girl.

    Her name was Maleka Ohia and she was our next-door neighbor. When I was between the ages of five and seven, my parents were preoccupied with their lives and the care of the two new babies in our lives. Whenever I was put in my own care, I would slip into the rain forest next to our house to explore, commune with nature, climb trees and eat sweet guavas. It was a place I felt completely in my element. A place that I felt safe.

    Mrs. Ohia would watch me from her window as I would slip into the forest. Instead of worrying about me, she would bless me and pray for my safety. She knew of dangers in the forest that I was too young to know -- sinkholes, wild boars, getting disoriented and lost. I knew nothing of her kind intervention until five years ago.

    I met her son Herbert 'Ohia, Sr., known as Pukiki to the family, at a family reunion in Las Vegas. By "sheer coincidence" he bumped into an uncle in the hotel lobby, who invited him to join us. He regaled us with stories about how our grandfather fed him when he was a hungry street urchin. Bonding with our grandfather, he later took his advice by joining the army. He rose to the rank of sergeant and fought in the Korean War. When he returned to the islands, he used the GI Bill to get a college education.



    We visited and prayed at Mrs. Ohia's grave site at the Sacred Heart Church in Pahoa in 2004. She was Catholic and a believer in intercessory prayer. In her life, she had melded both worlds: ancient Hawaiian spirituality and Christian Catholicism.

    A native speaker, he was fascinated that we spoke Hawaiian. The next day, we got together for breakfast. It was then he remembered me as the little girl that his mother had protected with her intercessory prayer and blessing. He revealed that protection as a smooth and reflective dome that zings back any wrong-doing directed at me. It made perfect sense to me when I heard about it. I've seen this boomerang effect happen time and time again in my life, so I don't question its reality. For most of my life, I am careful to do my best not to incur jealousy or enmity, as the negative actions or intents of others hurt them more than they ever hurt me.

    Before we parted, he gifted me with a jade turtle pendant. I just googled his name and learned that he passed away at age 79 two months ago. God rest his soul
    .


76. I rarely mourn the dead for very long.

    Except for Laki. I still mourn her and miss her every day.

    Our departed are not in a better place. They are in the best place (or on their way there) and celebrating their proximity with God. After I visited the other side, I understood the saying: "If you knew what Heaven is like, you'd kill yourself to get there." Of course, don't. Killing yourself is taking the long way back. Eveything is in God's Time. I pray for the departed, just in case they're still being purified.


77. I am a language buff.

    My first language is pidgin English. English is what I use in my everyday life, but I can slip right back to my first language in one second flat. Eh, how you stay? (How are you?) I know just enough Spanish, French, Italian, Hawaiian, Japanese, Pig Latin and Gibberish to get me in trouble.


78. I've loved reading dictionaries since I was a kid.

    Serious. One payoff: I had a perfect score on the verbal portion of the entrance exam for graduate/professional schools.


79. I resent present-day ideas about brevity of thought and language.

    E-mail terseness is not my forte. I like words to stretch, breathe, and roll off the tongue and/or on to the page, as you may have noticed.


80. I still have the Hawaiian Language website.

    Google those two words and it comes up on top. Back in 1997, I taught myself HTML and hardcoded the first site back in 1996. It was my little way of thanking my home state. I haven't updated it in years, yet it still receives millions of hits. Yes, millions. Who woulda thunk! People are that interested in Hawaiian, I guess.


81. I am so very happy that in general the Catholic Church stopped celebrating Mass in Latin.

    I don't know Latin, except the light smattering of it in Mass. I would be lost. I've been to a Latin Mass. It was beautiful in its own way. As an immature Catholic, I must admit that I prefer understanding what I'm hearing, saying or praying. Otherwise, it's all Greek to me.


82. Guilt is a terrible emotion, but a necessary one.

    Scrupulous me is so grateful that God gave us the Sacrament of Reconciliation and the Divine Mercy Jesus.


83. I once fancied myself as being master of my fate and captain of my soul.

    Realizing that none of this was so and that it was all in my imagination was one of the most difficult admissions of my life. It was also the most liberating. God's in charge, period. What was I thinking? I'm His puppet, and I'm A-OK with Him pulling my strings. Use me, use all of me!


84. I am constantly amazed how we as people take things for granted, myself included.

    The human capacity for unhappiness seems unbounded by material gain, ego, pride, security, and the need to be loved and admired more by humans than by God.


85. Contrary to popular perception, it seems that history rarely repeats itself. Yet humans do repeat the same mistakes, myself included.

    My mistakes are part of the dues that I pay for a full life in Christ.


86. I am outdoorsy.

    Hiking, mountain biking, canoeing, that sort of thing. I like to retreat to the mountains for sunshine, fresh air, open spaces, clearing out the cobwebs, solitude, stargazing, skygazing and quiet time with God.

    "God speaks quietly," Pope Benedict XVI once wrote. "But He gives us all kinds of signs. In retrospect, especially, we can see that He has given us a little nudge through a friend, through a book, or through what we see as a failure -- even through 'accidents.' Life is actually full of these silent indications. If we remain alert, then slowly they piece together a consistent whole, and we begin to feel how God is guiding us."

    God nudges me best in the mountains.


87. I can be a terrible procrastinator and I try not to indulge this proclivity.

    I am comforted that only Robinson Crusoe had everything done by Friday. Really and truly, if it weren't for the last minute, I wouldn't get anything done.


88. I find telephones discomfiting. I'm not a phone gabber.

    I own a TREO but rarely use it. I keep it charged for emergency situations. I avoid its use. If you call to gab and I tune you out, don't take take it personally. I just don't like talking on the phone. I'm very visual. If I can't see you, it's not the same as talking to you, face to face.


89. I like to laugh.

    I enjoy a good sense of humor. I relish a good joke. I enjoy the company of people who make me laugh.


90. What do I enjoy talking about? Austin and Makena. 'Oli and Freddy. All four just melt my heart.


"Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a real blessing." ~Psalms 127




    I also enjoy discussions about God, religion and faith. I don't proselytize and I don't want to be proselytized.


91. I love the simplicity of my life and its purpose: to know, love and serve God. My goal is Heaven. When I grow up I want to be a saint. Simple.


92. The Daffodil Garden website is my favorite of the sites I've created over the years.



    It honors two very special people on Earth who brought beauty to the San Bernardino mountains. Gocheckitout.


93. This blog was originally begun for an audience of two people, my husband and me, as a place to store our memories.

    There's a lot more than that now. Most of the time, I still don't know what to write, but something always manages to come up. I write because I hate to lose anything and writing something down is a way of keeping memories. Ditto with photography.

    Blogging helps me to keep track of my life by writing about it in bite size digestible pieces. This blog is not my first. I kept two journal sites before this one. These are the "Who I Am" pages written before my conversion.


94. Praying is like oxygen for me.

    I pray for my family, friends and enemies; for the priests, clergy, seminarians, those discerning vocations, religious, and the Pope and his intentions; for Our Lady and her intentions, for the unbelievers, the sick, and the youth; for our prayer group and our parishes and parishioners; those we serve in our work, patients and students; and you who read this blog.


95. The quandary of doing this meme is revealing stuff about me while not wishing to reveal stuff about me to the whole online world to know. But because I am in insanely confessional mood:

    I live at 740 Park Avenue, Suburbia, CA 90310 (Not!). My home phone: 911. My G-kids go to Hogwart's Academy, where they are available for kidnapping at 3 PM when school lets out.
    Yeah, right.


96. Hawai'i is and will always be the home of my heart on Earth.

    Up until recently, when the first G-kid arrived, we kept a small place on Moloka'i, thinking we'd eventually retire there. But we gave up that pipe dream when we realized that you end up retiring where your kids (and grandkids) are, that is, if you wish to share your lives with them. We do, so it is no big sacrifice. For us, then, home on Earth is Southern California.


97. We visit Heaven on Earth at Mass almost daily.




98. Mostly, it's been a joyful life.

    I have no regrets in my life; pain, embarrassment and humiliation, yes, but no regrets. It was all part of a Plan to get me Home. It's even more joyful and beautiful now, being in the bosom of family. The Holy Family.


99. Next to The Holy Trinity who I do my best to love with my whole heart, mind, soul and strength, I love Our Lady most. She pointed me to her Son, and the rest is history.

    Followed by: my husband, my family, my dogs, my friends. I keep working on loving my neighbor as myself. When I can do that, I think God will take me Home for good.



Well, this is not quite a 100 things. That's me, being different again.

God bless you for reading this exercise in self-knowledge, -exploration, -expression and transparency. Now it is your turn to come up with 100 things about yourself. You've just been tagged. Feel free to post your URL to your list below in the comments section.

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


Saturday, 3-Jun-2006 17:13 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Back to Medjugorje: In less than a month!

Pope John Paul II with a prayer petition.
Wilted orchid.
A bubble of air-conditioned air over Medjugorje...please?
Our gracious Lord, we have so many needs to lay at your feet. And yet, we know from your word that we need not worry about so many of the things that cause such anxiety for us. We love you because you are so willing to bear our burdens, but as we bring them to you, help us to trust your promise more fully. Prepare us, as you have prepared those before us, to trust your ability to meet our needs even before they arise. Amen.



Greetings, IIPG!

I will be on pilgrimage in Medjugorje during the Anniversary week with Ana and Steve Shawl's group, staying at Vicka's family's pansion.

If you have any prayer petitions/intentions/requests, just send them to me. I will be happy to take them with me up to Apparition Hill (Podbrdo) and present them to Our Lady and ask her to pray and intercede for you, as well as to the foot of the Cross on Cross Mountain (Krisevac) and at the outdoor Anniversary Mass. We'll pray for you, our prayer group and your petitions as we hike about and then leave them in Medjugorje.

If you send them early enough for me to do it, I will make a petition lei. I'll print out your petitions on colorful paper, fold them into strips, staple them into links (to ensure confidentiality) and then chain them together into a lei.

If you are there and see me, say hello. So you know what we look like, just google these words: peace pilgrim blog.


My husband and I will be wearing those same 'ole hats. I'll be the one wearing the colorful petition lei!

Also, may I ask a favor of you? Would you please pray that there will be an air-conditioned bubble over Medjugorje during that week? I may be from Hawai'i but I am a poor specimen of a tropical orchid; I wilt in heat and humidity! Also, we are going with a friend who is experiences her own her "private summers" with its "power surges", also known as hot flashes. She too will greatly appreciate your prayers.


Pray for us: A bubble of air-conditioned air over Medjugorje...please?


God bless each and every one of you. I love you!



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


Thursday, 1-Jun-2006 16:22 Email | Share | | Bookmark
PAREIDOLIA: Angels

Tomato Angels Photo credit: Jenn Lemon
Pareidolia: (Mis?)perception of a vague or ambiguous stimulus as something specific or meaningful.

>> spiritdaily.com: HATS OFF TO THE 'COINCIDENCES'

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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