Monday, 31 December 2007

A Happy and Holy 2008

Happy New Year The new year begins (as always) with the Solemnity of Mary the Mother of God.

I thought I would end the year with some FAMILY links. The family is under attack in the UK in new and scarier ways. Jackie reports on more pressure from our sinister-ministers to get sex ed taught to little kids.

She says "So we start the New Year with more of the same! The government wanting to corrupt our little children...well they're NOT getting mine! Even if i have to devote the whole year in the fight for our children's innocence..so be it!" I add my vote to that!

Meanwhile Fr Ray Blake and Paulinus are reporting on the move to make Catholic bishops explain why they want Catholic schools to teach ... Catholicism!

It is the family that is the root of !ny community, of a nation. I am reading the Charlotte Mason Home Schooling series. Book Two is Parents and Children which I have linked with the short summary. Miss Mason writes as a high Anglican and her philosophy works well for Catholic parents whether they home educate or not.

Familiaris Consortio is my favourite encyclical.

The Holy Father has set his sights on the family for the New Year with his message THE HUMAN FAMILY, A COMMUNITY OF PEACE.

Wednesday, 26 December 2007

St Stephen; 2nd Day of Christmas






Happy Christmas everyone. We have had a couple of pretty sick little ones so my dd (13yr old) said she could beat those Councils around England (and I think a couple in Scotland) who decided to change Christmas to Winterfest - she called yesterday 'Pukefest!'



We did manage to get to the vigil Mass on Christmas Eve and the oldest went back at Midnight as well. Today the men of the house; my husband and the two older boys went to Church for the St Stephen's Day Mass. St Stephen is the first martyr of the Church, a deacon and the patron saint of altar servers. Every year on this day my boys join their fellow altar servers for this special Mass and renew their promises. Next year they will both have earned their silver medals for 10 yrs service.

The altar server's Guild of St Stephen is an important part of my boy's life. I think this is an excellent way of encouraging young men to remain loyal to a service to Christ and His Church. They receive medals as they earn them and must show commitment and dedication in service. I think more could be made of this for the youngsters so that they were more involved in the Eucharistic life-but my boys are proud of their medals and what they symbolise.

I have been thinking about it more recently because of things I have heard on Catholic Radio about how people are encouraged to join groups within Islam-particularly for young men. These groups give them a sense of identity and demand a strong commitment. Okay, they can be a bit spooky too; one man described being hounded by the group leaders when he decided against conversion and began to return to his Christian roots.

One of my muslim friends has told me about the groups within her own local mosque that are obviously strong and designed to hold the converts together. Obviously I am not suggesting that Catholics should follow this pattern completely as the coercive nature of them is frankly unpleasant-but we do have groups within the church that could do a lot more to encourage commitment from young people. After all we do have a Faith worth dieing for and I am sure many young men in particular would be willing to be part of a Faith like that.

Tuesday, 18 December 2007

"God is good."

I had a hospital appointment yesterday. I hate them. I had a list of questions about the evoked potentials. I had been told they were all normal, but the sensory ones had been very strange in sensation and I was surprised they were normal and wondered what the difference could mean.
As it happened (and as is usual with me) the results were not normal-they were not there at all. The doctor said he would chase them up. Meanwhile with half my notes missing he asked how i was.
Well, I could tell him that things are improving. For the last few weeks I have managed without any Tramadol and I am only taking analgesia at night. My balance has improved and so has my walking because my leg doesn't drag so much. I still need a wheelchair for distances and crutches - but there is marked improvement. I simply feel better. The fatigue has reduced markedly, probably because I am not constantly trying to keep a balance between how much pain I can stand and how many tablets a breastfeeding mum should take.
Things had begun to improve once my daughter (the 13 yr old one) and I had said a Novena to the Infant of Prague. We are resaying it at the moment. A few days ago I saw a medal for the Infant of Healing-which was essentially the Infant of Prague.

The doctor did the tests. Push this, hold that, squeeze my fingers and so on. I hate them because it just shows up what a crip I am. But yesterday I gripped his fingers in my right hand and I could do it! I could actually feel his fingers in my grip! I have not been able to do that for over four years! I could lift my leg from flat and when he stuck the little pin in my leg I could feel it. Even my reflexes were normal.

I couldn't believe it. The doctor thinks I am healing and that I could go back to having a normal life as this really is-he says-it! He then said "You have suffered a great deal over the last four years, it is time to put that behind you. God is good."

For a doctor in and NHS hospital to say "God is good" is a minor miracle all of its own. We both wished God's blessing and I have an appt for six months time. I am praying and determined to WALK into that hospital.

God really is good.

Friday, 14 December 2007

"...the best place in the world for children..."

Mac (Mulier Fortis) has commented on yet more curriculum shenanigans designed to make learning as boring and meaningless as possible for our children. She describes the lowering of standards particularly in science where she notes that the old O'level textbooks were of a higher standard than present day A'levels.
On Thinking Love, No Twaddle there is more on this.


Meanwhile Jackie (CatholicMomOf10-scroll down) has been writing a lot about the forced introduction of sex education into even our primary schools and now the Govt are saying pharmasists can hand over the Pill to under 16 yr old girls.

The experts scratch their propaganda filled heads and wonder why despite all the propa...er...education offered to children on how to do sex...safely of course, that they are going out and doing it and yet still managing to be pregant and riddled with disease. Instead of wondering if the problem lies with the education they insist in more of the same-with NO research to back it up.

Of course the science and Maths syllabus is such a mess these days there are few people left who actually know how to do research I suppose-and going by the standard of some medical research that is much the same everywhere.

A great deal of science GCSE is dedicated to such things as 'over population' and 'environmentalism'-which is a politcal message not one based on empirical data.

The Govt, worried about the state of our children who are self harming, taking prozac and more obese than ever before wants to make sure their parents are kept as far away from them as possible. Make mothers go to work or lose benifits; make schools open from early morning until the evening and keep the kids in the institution for as long as possible.


When these children have no adult to go to and so end up looking for love in abusive sexual relationships. But don't worry, the psychological effects and disease inherent in this is of no matter-they can nip to the chemist and get the Pill. The side effects are mild, deep vein thrombosis, depression, weight gain, cramping, migraine, infertility, breast cancer-nothing to worry about. Obviously nothing to worry about as there is no strategy to deal with those side effects.

Parents, who are being sidelined in all of this will of course be expected to pick up the pieces of their daughter's destroyed health and wellbeing I do not doubt.



A 17yr old was recently advised that if she wished to get financial help to continue her studies now both her parents were dead, she had better get pregnant.



Then The Sinister-minister for familiy, schools and interference says "Our aim is to make this country the best place in the world for our children and young people to grow up."

Sunday, 9 December 2007

Christmas Meme

Karen, a glittering gem of the Ocean and the richly scented Autum Rose have tagged me for this meme.

1. Wrapping paper or gift bag: Both, and I am afraid I often use neither shoving homemade stuff into shoe boxes and carrier bags.

2. Real tree or artifical: We have an artifical tree because real ones shed and babies get the sheddy bits and it can get a bit unpleasant. We also keep our tree in a cage-a playpen, thus preventing toddler and baby climbing, pulling over on head and other small-person induced catastrophes.

3.When do you put up the tree? My son puts the tree up as soon as we hit Dec 1st. He would put it up earlier if I let him. He's 16 now and still gets all excited about a tree with pretty lights on Christmas Tree and do you know- I don't blame him. It is becoming a running joke that the tree goes up almost at dawn on Dec 1st, and it didn't this year because he was at work! People popped over to see us and asked where the tree was. LOL.

4.When do you take it down? Epiphany-once the wise men are headed home Three Kings

5. Do you like eggnog? Er...no.

6. Favourite gifts received as a child; I received a cuddly Koala once and loved it.

7. Do you have a Nativity Scene? We have a cloth Advent Calender one hanging on the wall. We did have a traidcraft wooden thing too but over the years people have vanished from the set-not sure how. We also have a large nativity scene in the back room made from toilet rolls. We make one most years. This year Mary is in pink at the insistance of my (just turned) 3yr old and we have a couple of pretty scary looking shepherds. The kings are yet to be made. We add a nicely wrapped box under the scene and then the children each make Jesus a present. On Christmas Eve after Mass each of us put the little gift into the box for the baby Jesus.

8. Hardest person to buy for: Usually my oldest, but this year there are a couple of things he needs to get ready for his trip to America so it wasn't so hard.

9. Worst Christmas gift you ever received: Well, it wasn't a gift as such, but I had my daughter on Dec 7th and was home for Christmas which was great as she was due Dec 27th and I had thought I might spend Christmas in hospital-but then the whole family went down with D&V and I got it too-horrible with a new C-section let me tell you!!!

10. Favourite Christmas movie: Of course "It's a Wonderful Life" and "White Christmas" but I also love "Muppet's Christmas Carol" (I can't help it) and a made for TV film about a family made homeless just before Christmas and end up sleeping in a huge store-which I am sure was filmed at Jenners in Ediburgh. I can't remember the name of the film, but it was about how home and family are more important than shopping and honesty is more important than wealth. Loved it.

11. Mail or email Christmas cards: Both and hand them out personally when I can.

12. When do you start Christmas shopping? July/August. Don't be horrified there is method in my madness. We have some family members we only get to see once a year, usually at the end of August and I like to be able to hand over the pressies to be saved until Christmas. This means I can buy something suitable for the godchildren and other children without worrying about when and how to post it. Then we go fruit picking and I freeze it all until jam making.
I get the first autumn apples around the end of Sept and start buying in the dried fruit etc around Oct and if I am organised (which isn't often these days) the first cakes and chutneys get made by the end of Oct.
The not-made pressies get bought from Nov and I try and spread the cost.

13. Have you ever recylced a Christmas present: Yes, someone can get use from it, and it seems a waste otherwise.

14. Favourite thing to eat at Christmas: I love Christmas dinner- beef and venison pie cooked with cranberries; hot roasted chestnuts from a paper bag; homemade mince pie with cheese (don't much like shop mince pies); Green & Blacks chocolate.

15. Clear lights or coloured on the tree? Coloured. I like them.

16. Favourite Christmas song: Hymns I love are O Come, O Come Emmanuel (I know it's an Advent hymn, but I love it). Adeste Fidelis - it is better in Latin. And I confess to loving the daft song "Santa Baby" which we have on MP3-the Miss Piggy version.

17.Travel or stay home: Home. Everyone comes to us. We do visits around the time though.

18. Can you name Santa's reindeers? Erm...no...embarrassing-not-very-mum moment 3D Rudolph
19. Angel on top of the Christmas tree or a star? At the moment we have Spiderman -but I am informed a star will be made. Spiderman keeps falling down, poor dear.

20. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? One small pressie when we get back from Mass and the rest spread out over Christmas Day.

21. Most annoying thing about this time of year: Coca Cola adverts and other people's killjoy misery about Christmas.

22. The best thing about this time of year. The wonder and excitement of children. The lights sparkling in people's homes; the amount of kindness and the fact that those of us who spend so much time walking in darkness get to see a Great Light
Manger

Now I tag
Esther
Philip of Carpe-canum if he has time
And Paul on the Side of the The Angels

Wednesday, 5 December 2007

Will your grandchildren be Catholic?

Fr Mildew has done a good post on this and I have THIS link to a Catholic Answers Mrs Mcleod did on this subject.

Monday, 3 December 2007

Christmas Shopping

Three Kings It is time to choose those special gifts for those we love and send the cards. Yes, even with the non-consumerist Christmas we try to have I still have to buy stuff. I thought I would recommend some things and places to do your shopping.



First I would like to recommend the beautiful rosary bracelets made by my friend Shana. She made the one in the photo for me after I asked specifically for one with flat beads with different colours on either side so I could be distracted by the children during a decade and still not forget where I was. She's a lovely lady - a homeschooling mum of 8. The rosaries are well made-mine has proved to be baby proof! A lovely Christmas gift.

I also recommend Aid to the Church in Need- they sell a good selection of cards and small gifts, some of which are olive wood items made by the beleagured Christian community in Bethelehem.

Chris Holden at St Anthony Communications is offering a membership of £3.95 a month. Check out his tapes, bookes, CDs and DVDs. I think supporting the little man is good.

I also recommend Family Publications

I haven't bought anything for Christmas from the RNLI but they are a great charity and save many many lives every year.

I also order some extra stuff from the milkman. He is self employed and trying to earn a living to care for his family. I am a great believer is supporting the little man, especially the self employed ones. On this note I will probably buy some stuff from the Deli where my son works.

This does not mean I don't shop at the biggies like Woolies-they employed one of my children too for a while. I am well aware of how difficult some of our older teens are finding it to get a job and the 'biggies' employ a lot of people.

I have bought a lot of fair trade stuff over the years-but I am less certain about it as a system and am holding off this year. Anyway how many sheshem wood boxes can anyone need?

Of course I am avoiding Oxfam and Cafod and Christian Aid the condom pushers.

We make a lot of pressies-mincemeat, jams, cakes, cookies, Turkish Delight, tablet, fudge etc. and we make some of the cards we send as well, but I do still shop a bit.

(Hope Marie and Ginny don't demand the award back Winky )

Happy Advent Christmas Angel

Shine a light on his dark materials

I was surprised and a little disappointed to hear Teresa Tommeo say that Christian parents ARE buying the Pullman books for their children because they feel under pressure to do so.
Honestly-and if a load of people decide eating poisonous mushrooms is fashionable would they buy those for their children too?

I have heard the shallow arguement that those of us who have not read-and will not read- the anti-Christian polemic of Pullman cannot judge them. Oh yes we can. We judge them based on what those who have read them say.
I do not need to eat poisonous mushrooms to know for myself they are poisonous-I trust the witness of sensible people who tell me they are.

The film has been toned down apparently; So what? How much poison do we want to feed our children?
Have a look at Philip's blog side bar
Also read Jimmy Akin's post
And I highly recommend THIS POST on the subject with a thanks to my friend Shana for supplying it.
All this should offer more than enough information to parents so that they spend their money more wisely for Christmas.

I have allowed Harry Potter-although only my oldest has read HP and he hasn't bothered with the later books as he got bored. He also received a copy of the Da Vinci Code from family members who didn't seem to realise what an anti-Catholic piece it was. My son decided to read it because he wanted to be able to answer questions on it-but he found it so badly written he gave up before he got half way through.

Pullman is a so so writer apparently-and I suppose we can be grateful for that. But so many children are given rubbish to read- what my heroine Charlotte Mason would have called 'twaddle'- that they will not be able to see how nasty these books are.

As parents we have a right and duty to educate our children and that means taking due care and attention of what they read.
I see so much about how awful TV is and yet parents let their kids read anything.

It's Advent and yesterday's readings were all about WAKING UP! Let us wake up and put on the armour of Christ and then the little darknesses like Pullman and his books and the film are easily defeated.

"Let nothing you dismay"

Saturday, 1 December 2007

Knickers in a twist


Perhaps it is because I've not had much sleep recently thanks to a sick baby, but that advert by our infinitely lacking in wisdom Government is getting on my nerves.
It shows some young people at a nightclub or some such venue and then they rush home to jump into bed with each other, casually discarding a rather unattractive pair of knickers with the word 'gonorrhoea' beautifully embroidered on them. This is followed by the old cannard "Wear a Condom" as condoms according to this advert are 'essential wear'.
It's just so stupid- SHE SHOULD WEAR HER KNICKERS! then they wouldn't need any fancy embroidery. Keeping her knickers on should be essential wear.
And while I'm ranting-do young people really need such a patronising approach? Are they really so stupid they can't be told along with 'Don't drink and drive','Don't do drugs', 'Don't smoke', 'don't cross the road without looking', 'Recycle' and DON'T HAVE SEX WITH ANYONE WHO IS NOT YOUR SPOUSE.
My teenage children wear chastity rings. They are proud to do so because it is a sign of their dignity and self respect.
Sadly I had to order the rings from the USA-I can't find them available in the UK. Why is that?

Friday, 30 November 2007

Thank you to Marie and Ginny of View from the Pews who are passing this award around to Christian bloggers who think the fact that 'God [is] With Us' is a bit more important than maxing out the credit cards.

Emmanuel Award
"God With Us"
In a consumer society it is a blessing to read blogs where the writer's main focus is God. Where they express their love for their faith so visibly and joyfully.In a cynical world it is refreshing to see so many blogs which are generous, giving, who care about others and demonstrate what being a Christian is about, loving God and loving our neighbor.
Through their faith, lives and spirituality, they bring God to us, they in essence make God visible, 'God with us.'
This Award goes to all the faith filled blogs who make evident 'Emmanuel'- God with us, with Joy in their hearts.
Please share this Award with Christian blogs that focus on the real meaning of Christmas, the birth of our Savior.
Peace, JOY & Merry Christmas
Marie & Ginny

I would like to pass this on to

Autumn Rose

Ebeth as she climbs those pillars and I recommend THIS post by her

Therese at her Aussie Coffee Shop has it already...

Totus Tuus family

Rita at Tigerish Waters

There are LOADS of others who could and I am sure will receive this award, and that is a heart warming thought. There are many people out there who want Christ to be the centre of their Christmas-and so He will be
Manger

Wednesday, 28 November 2007

Watching someone go to heaven

November is drawing to a close and we'll put away the memorial book. All month the book has stood on a special stand in front of the altar at church to remind us to pray for all those of our parish who have died.

My children lit a candle for their grandmother a couple of weeks ago. There are many others they could have lit the candle for but I am sure God is taking care of them all.

Over the years as a nurse I took care of few people as they approached death.

HERE is a priest's story of a lovely death. It seems that he just knew she was going to die that day and went to see her. I like to think God can get around the problems we have here in the UK where chaplains are no longer informed of Catholic's in hospital or homes who need the Sacraments.
The story Father told here implies that this lady went straight to heaven. He spoke of her holiness and of her committment to doing the will of God. She had fought the good fight it seems so this is not a case of what my sister calls a 'get-into-heaven-free' card.
How wonderful to hear a story of someone so ready to go home-and so filled with joy as she took her last breath.

Friday, 23 November 2007

Why did God do that?

My 16yr old has a Wii. He has just bought the game "Endless Ocean".



I have to say it's a rather beautiful game. He is the diver and swims around meeting all kinds of marine creatures, learning about them. Even the music is good-which has surprised me. Good ol'Nintendo.

Now most of the creatures are beautiful and graceful and we watch them to the fine music of a Sanctus or Amazing Grace-but some of them are just...well, butt ugly! It's not just the angler fish, which is just funny to look at there's the Goblin shark;

Why did God do that?

He also made a fish called an Asian Sheephead Wrasse-which has a rather uncanny resemblance to Gordan Brown (we have named the one in the game Gordan in his...erm...honour).

It seems to me that the fish in the light where the fingers of God stream through from above are all pretty and colourful, dancing among the coral and rocks, but the deeper and darker it gets the uglier and scarier the fishies look. Is this meaningful in some way?

Is God trying to tell us the longer we spend in the dark, the uglier and scarier we get?

Just wondering...

Thursday, 22 November 2007

For the children

Amanda has emailed me twice now and I'm only just catching up.

First:



Pro-Life Rally

Saturday November 24th

3pm

The John Radclife hospital, outside St Anthony of Padua Church


Those of us who can't be there will add our prayers to theirs.


She has also sent me THIS LINK about the awful plight of disabled children in Bulgaria.
Please check out the link and sign the petition to ask the PM to bring with up with the Bulgarian Govt.
Ideally I would like to see adoption opportunities set up so families from Bulgaria and other countries such as the UK can offer proper homes to these children.
Anyway we pray and hope.

Sunday, 18 November 2007

Honourable Fatherhood

I've been listening to MP3 downloads from Catholic Radio about the role of father's in the home and the general state and view of fatherhood as a whole in Western culture. Steve Wood does a lot of programmes about fatherhood-very good stuff.
There are three rules
Put God first
Then your family(wife and children)
then anything else.
He points out that many men get things in the wrong order and put work or their own needs first. The programmes help to give father's a focus and reminder of their role which has been so undermined by feminism and the selfish culture of today.
So many children grow up without a father at all, or with one of those detached father's who comes home for dinner, but hardly interacts with his children. How many times do I hear on Dr Ray Guarendi's phone in programme that dad leaves all the discipline to mum?
It is interesting that most mums, chatting together or phoning programmes are only too happy to submit to their husbands as per Eph 5 as he takes on the role of priest and father of the family. A father who leads as head of his family is a father who brings his children nearer to God the Father. Isn't that wonderful?
But what about those who have been so abused they cannot 'honour father and mother'?
Sr Mary Martha in her blog once said there is a special place in puratory for parents who don't do their job properly-and I do not doubt there is a certain place in hell too.
Charlotte Mason insists that a mother (and I am sure she means father's too) must give what she calls a "thinking love" to their children. We need to think about the love we give and how we give it. Discipline and routine for our children comes from us-the parents. If our children behave badly, become bad people even-isn't at least some that down to us?
I'm rambling sorry. It's just I seem to be coming across so many poorly parented people these days; sad, lonely and desperately selfish in their brokeness.
A friend of mine talked about the children she has fostered today and it brought back memories of my own work with children in the mental health system.
I will never understand parents who will not love their children, or who are so lacking in thinking love that they collude with and enable bad behaviour.
A father is given the beautiful task and all the graces he needs to help his bride, the mother of his children bring up their treasures for heaven.
God have mercy on those who wont.

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

The importance of family


MY children got out a couple of DVDs to watch, Flushed Away and 'The Pursuit of Happyness'. We watched the latter film over the last couple of nights. It is based on the true story of Chris Gardener and his son. Dad is doing his utmost to keep his family together and take proper care of his son, but their dreadful financial situation leaves them on the streets. They have to sleep rough until they are rescued by Rev Cecil Williams (who plays himself in the film). He runs a Church and a shelter. According to Mr Gardener that church serves a million meals a year to those who have nowhere else to go.
Gardener gets himself an internship-unpaid- at a stock brokers and works his socks off, eventually gaining that happiness for himself and his son.
When the film came out the media here in the UK - like the BBC were quick to call it a 'rags to riches' film. It isn't. It is a film about one man's utter commitment to his son. He spends a lot of the time running-always trying to fit everything in around his son. His son's needs are paramount.
But one of the things that struck me more than once as we watched this film was just how alone Mr Gardener was. He appeared to have no friends and no family willing to step up to the plate when things became so so difficult for him and his 5yr old. Where were they?
His wife leaves.
He never knew his own father and the film gives the impression he has no mother to speak of either although the real Mr Gardener speaks well of her. She apparently tells him "You can only rely on yourself." A sad and lonely sentiment and yet very true for so many people.
He is determined to do for his son and be for his son, what his own father had not been to him.
Family is important. Parents have a duty to their children for the whole of their lives, offering love and support. Children have a duty to their parents and to their siblings.
As Christmas approaches I think 'family' is on my mind more and I wonder what it is that makes some people so unwilling to give of themselves, to share within their families. My sister has phoned me recently struggling with her bitterness I think as she meets grandparents who are so proud of their children and grandchildren-who babysit and help out.
Chris Gardener worked hard and he has made a life for himself and his children. I hope that life includes taking good care of each other.

Saturday, 10 November 2007

Family war stories

Like most families we have stories about the wars handed down to us. My grandfather lost his arm in WW1 thanks to a canon wheel. He learned to swim, play snooker and do all sorts of things with only one arm. He died before I was born. My gran and her sister my great aunt lived together in a little bungalow and we would take my aunt to Mass each week-but gran would never come.
She had stopped going after the war. I am not sure whether it was after the first or second world war, but she despised war and blamed the Church for supporting it. Her only brother died on the last day of the WW 1 -shot somewhere in the trenches in France only a few days after his 16th birthday.

It was not legal for a 15 yr old boy to be out at the front of course-but by the end of the war there were few men left and lads were allowed to sign on without much in the way of background checks being done. Jack's death stayed with my aunts and gran for the rest of their lives.

My aunt Eileen had been a priest's housekeeper for many years and had been engaged. Her fiance was killed.

In WW2 my uncle was in the engineering corps and was among those who entered-I think it was Belson-at the end of the war and had the task of burying the piles and piles of bodies the Nazi's left. He never talked about it so I don't know the details.

Now we know those who have served in Iraq.

Tomorrow-we remember and pray

Monday, 5 November 2007

Guy Fawkes-not yet forgotten

When I was a child we remembered the 5th Nov as ‘Guy Fawkes Night’ and we had a fairly good idea of the story behind the bonfires and fireworks. I was quite a bit older when I learned how much of the story had been embellished as anti-Catholic propaganda but that only added a little spice to the celebrations; we Catholic kids could support poor old guy.

Later it was referred to as ‘Bonfire Night’ and although there was the occasional effigy of Guy nothing much of the story was heard.

Now it is simply ‘fireworks night’ and little more than an extension of the noise and ‘party’ of Halloween. It isn’t even pagan. It’s simply meaningless, devoid of it’s historical content and merely a good way to get people to let off fireworks and shout a lot in the streets.

The story of what it is really all about is told by Jamie Bogle HERE.

As it happens my ancestors were involved, probably on the periphery of the plot. A rather famous family in Warwickshire had stayed Catholic despite the persecution and injustices meted out to them. My family were their bailiffs. They too remained Catholic, so I claim linage with one of the few recusant families in England. None of my family were executed over the plot, but they continued to suffer under the policies of the Stuart and then Hanover reigns. They paid the punitive ‘Catholic tax’, having to live like dhimi’s in the now protestant land.

After emancipation in 1829 my family built a new Catholic church to replace the one Henry VIII and his minions stole.

Sadly, they are gone-but the fact that these families held on to the faith throughout gives me hope as the new persecution gets under way.

Saturday, 3 November 2007

These are a few of my favourite saints...

We have a short litany of 'family saints' at the end of morning rosary. Each of the saints has a meaning and a special place in the heart for someone in the family-or they are very much admired.
There are others that we turn to for various reasons, who have been there through difficult times.

St Bridget or as she is really called Birgitta of Sweden is someone I love a great deal of course.
Also her daughter St Katrin of Verdana who is the patron saint for mums who have miscarried our babies.
St Francis of Assisi and his spiritual son St Padre Pio are close to my older boys and have a special place in my heart because of one of my miscarried babies.

St Joseph, a model of fatherhood.
St Thomas Aquinas for his love of God in the Tabernacle and his humble love of learning.
St Helen for her strength and perseverance.
St Teresa of Avila-who was a contemporary of St Bridget.
St Edith Stein,
St John Bosco.
St Josephine Bakhita
We love the saints of Lindesfarne and Iona, especially the rather obscure St Ronan of Iona who stood by St Wilfred at the Council of Whitby.

Many of the English Martyrs especially St Margaret Clitherow.

St Gerard Majella who helped me through my last pregnancy.


There are those not yet saints;
John Paul the Great,
Blessed Margaret of Costello- a fellow crip.
Ven Matt Talbott- as I have lost a dear friend to his alcoholism; he died aged 39. I have a close family member now in AA and she is doing well. I also have other friends in AA. In fact I think I know more people who suffer with alcoholism than any other illness.

Finally we love St Michael and each of us has a close relationship with our guardian angel.

There are many others I could mention-but I am so rushed at the moment; hopefully things will quiet down soon.


Thursday, 1 November 2007

Happy All Saints

Church was packed this morning. That's a good thing to see. We were relegated to foyer land as there was no room in church.
The school was there and Father reminded the children-most of whom do not attend Mass-that this was their home, a place they had a right to attend and no one should stop them. Good for him.

We had hardly any trick or treater's last night.
The children had made lanterns out of pumpkins-one of which was called George, my 4yr old said. The other two remained sadly nameless.

Now I know there are those who don't like pumpkin lanterns for All Hallows Eve, but we love the warm orange glow, and my 16yr old is quite artistic and can make pictures by takind off the skin and letting the light glow through the flesh.

We have begun our Nov prayers for our dead friends and family. We do so with the hope of God's mercy. It's good to be Catholic.

,,,,,,
Not much time to blog at the moment. Helping the oldest to get the final bits done so he can go to EWTN in January. Very exciting-and a bit scary.
Must make cuppa for the Maths tutor...(yes we have a Maths tutor-I know my limitations LOL)

Friday, 26 October 2007

Sex ed in Catholic schools

After Jackie's (CatholicMomof10) post on a rather obscene Sex Ed programme for Catholic primary schools, I happened to be talking with my daughter and her friend about school. Her friend who is also 13 attends the very good Catholic school I pulled my daughter out of.
Her friend is a lovely girl, quite shy and due to some developmental difficulties she is a little emotionally immature. This does not matter in a class of 30 of course and she has been subjected to sex ed over the last three years to a degree she has found difficult to cope with. She did not tell me what was difficult- and as she was finding telling me at all a struggle I did not pry, but simply let her talk.
She said she had tried not to look at the video and was put off by the teacher who was "blunt" on the subject.
Perhaps what was being taught was overall appropriate for the average 13 year old-but it was NOT appropriate for my daughter's friend. Schools do not or can not take each child's individual development and coping ability into consideration and so she has been subjected to something she found really awful.

My own daughter will get only what I teach her and because we have time to talk I hope I can protect her from bad influences. This has already proved the case when she was targeted by a sleazy young man a couple of years ago.

We need to protect our children. Schools, especially Catholic schools should not be offending the innocence of our children.

Thursday, 25 October 2007

Actively Pro-Life; the fight is on.

After the Programme the other night on channel 4 both Mac at Mulier Fortis
and Philip at Carpe Canem have posted asking that we sign the petition which they link.
Mac has posted an extract from the programme that is harrowing in the extreme.
A doctor, trained presumably in caring for the sick has managed somehow to sit and explain the details of how he cuts apart a child and crushes his or her head to pull the corpse bit by bit from the mother.
This is legal.

The petition demands that in the light of what we know about the survival of babies born at 23weeks, that the legal age for abortion should be lowered from 24weeks to 16 weeks.
Please sign it.
The pro-life voice has been a polite whisper in the UK against the rage filled shrieking of the death-peddlers. But surely if enough of us whisper together- that still small voice could be heard above the tantrum of the baby killers.

Mac raises a valid concern that if the limit were to be dropped to 16 weeks then it would probably be with only one doctor signing for the baby's death.
Sadly in my experience the process of getting the second signature is a matter of form. The process is shockingly quick and efficient (when I've seen my friends go through it) compared to most care processes in the NHS.
I still miss those babies that my husband and I offered our lives and home to-but their mother's thought it better to abort.

I am surprised that Channel 4 has been willing and able to put out a programme that so truthfully shows the dispicable nature of this industry. Is it because we are sick of it and need to see it for what it is? I hope so.
The altarnative is, C4 think this is so much part of normal life that no one will mind too much.

God help us.

My friend Amanda Lewin who runs the Oxford pro-life campaigne has my renewed respect and prayers for what she and such a small group of people do-for so profound an evil and the mass murder of our children.

Saturday, 20 October 2007

Connexions give me the creeps

Got a knock on the door this morning, and there stood two ladies flashing their Connexions badges and clipboards at me. They wanted to speak to my 16yr old. They said they were merely doing a follow up and that the Govt demands that all young people are 'followed' in this way.
Parents are not involved in this process at all. I had no idea they had my son's details on their data base and am appalled that they are supposed to keep a file on him.
They wanted to know about his work and college commitments and seemed uncomfortable with the fact that his mere mother was so suspicious of them.

I told them bluntly that this felt like interference in my son's life.

Why should the Govt mandate that an organisation be able to go behind a parent's back and keep files and 'follow' our children. Connexions has done NOTHING to assist my two older teens in getting work, planning courses...anything at all.
And I certainly do not want them offering 'health advice' thank you.

Rant over.

Thursday, 18 October 2007

Fr Ray Blake 4 Westminster

Well the campaign to get Fr Ray into Westminster is under way. Those of us who think he would look great in red shoes are using the (dubious) power of the blog to state our case.

I can just see him now- walking down the road in the black and red of a cardinal, saying his rosary with Paul (OTSOTA) to one side of him and Philip (Carpe-Canum) on the other wearing black suits, shades and carrying rosaries with attitude.

Karen has been a Gem and made up the banners for the campaign.

Paul has called on Damian Thompson to join the clan-and he would make a great press officer. I don't know who has replaced Austin Inverleigh...and I wont say what I thought about the press releases then...
Fr Ray has his lovely manifesto HERE though obviously with dose of flying pigs Pig Paul has done one too and Philip has been challenged.


I will have this- on my car as soon as it is crip-adjusted (monday!)



So all we need is a few more people on board and we can cue the really awful Blakes' 7 music.Let there be an end to 1970's liturgy!

With Mac of Mulier Fortis and the ever redoubtable Daphne McCloud in charge of RE just imagine-children leaving school actually having been taught the Faith!!!

'Tis the seaon for wellies

AutumnRose has found a lovely pair of wellies with chocs on them and an umbrella to match. Apparently she is not usually a fan of wellies.

I love 'em. They get you through muddy fields, the cut path and are great for shallow water.


Here are the ones I have:


My daughter helped me choose them while we were on holiday. My poor husband said he was embarrassed to shove a wheelchair in which sat a woman, with baby wearing Smartie Wellies.

My daughter told him they are the height of fashion. I don't think she could have meant that!

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

My son stands up for the Faith.

I am not one of those mums who goes on about how wonderful her kids are-but I do have to tell you this.
My second son is 16 and has just started college. He is doing a Media and Communications 1st Diploma (or whatever it's called) which will lead him to the next thing and then he hopes to do a degree in animation and gaming.
Yesterday his group were taken to see a special screening of Amazing Grace about William Wilberforce and his fight against the slave trade.
When the film was over a university lecturer spoke about the film and began to run down the Christian faith of Wilberforce saying Christianity had nothing to offer modern thinking man.

Well my son stood up and argued with him. He pointed out that it was the Christians who had put and end to slavery and that Christianity still holds true.
Some of his fellow students told him to shut up-but he refused.

He came home and told me about it-but had to return to college for a tutorial. He came home from that and to my surprise told me his tutor had congratulated him on his stand!

I must admit- I am proud of him.

Monday, 15 October 2007

The joys of Autumn

Autumn Rose has tagged me for this meme. I love the questions here.


When does Autumn begin for you? It begins with that 'smell' of cool earth and then I order the coal for the fire (smokeless of course-don't go all Al Gore on me) Then I send the boys out to make sure we have good dry kindling.
What is your favorite aspect of Autumn? I love dark nights and a roaring fire, toasting marshmallows and reading stories with the children (yep including the 18yr old)

What is your favorite Autumn memory? Taking the children to the park to collect conkers.
What do you like to drink in the Autumn? Hot chocolate specials as we call them; hot chocolate with a swirl of cream and marshmallows and maybe even a little grated chocolate. Sometimes for the grown ups we add a dash of Bailey's.
What’s your favorite Autumn food? Beef stew done in the slow cooker or carrot and orange soup with cheese grated over the top and eaten with fresh bread. Now I have to confess I have got our of the habit of making bread this last year and it is an 'autumn resolution' to make some again soon, especially as it is soup and stew season.

My daughter likes chicken soup-but it takes me so long to make. I did it t'other night and it was worth it.
What is Autumn weather like where you live? Cool and that sharp bright sunshine that only happens now. But it is somewhat warmer at the moment.
What color is Autumn? Gold mostly, but also green turning bronze and the deep purple of copper beech.
What does Autumn smell like? Earth and spices.
Christmas shopping in Autumn? Yes, I start stocking up on dried fruit, sugar, spices, etc as it spreads the cost and I make a lot of pressies.
If you could go anywhere in the Autumn, where would you go? Somewhere with trees and hot muffins...

Do you have a favorite Autumn chore? Making mincemeat and marmalade


What is your least favorite thing about Autumn? Soggy leaves with dog poo


What is your favorite Autumn holiday? We celebrate All Souls and All Saints. We have pumpkin lanterns and sweets and the little'uns dress as saints and fight the dragon. Not conventional I know-and one year St George was scared of the dragon his big sister had made so St George's big brother champion had to kill the dragon. LOL.


What’s your favorite kind of pie? Apple and cinnamon.


Do you have a favorite Autumn book?
Whatever I am reading. I have started reading the Charlotte Mason original Homeschooling series. She had such a common sense understanding of children and insisted they be treated with respect.
She talks about natural law and the kind of discipline and love that children need.

How about a favorite Autumn poem? I am not a great poetry person- I know that is rather an awful admission for a homeschooling mum.
I do get my children doing poetry, but to be honest I find it hard to get into.

Sunday, 14 October 2007

The Power of Prayer

Thank you so much to those of you who prayed for my daughter. She is so much better and will not need to go into hospital.
She has been doing so well and this was a bit of a blip in her recovery -but thank God (and I do) she is okay.

God bless

Thursday, 11 October 2007

Our Lady of Akita


60 years later Our Lady came to the little village of Akita in Japan and reminded her-and us that it was not over. Not yet.


An angel had come to Sr Agnus Sasagawa and prayed the last part of her rosary with her


"O My Jesus, forgive us our sins; save us from the fire of hell; lead all souls to heaven, especially those most in need."


Thus the angel reminds us that the message of Fatima was still continuing in 1973.


First message, July 6, 1973

Our Lady spoke to the profoundly deaf Sr Agnus; "My daughter, my novice, you have obeyed Me well in abandoning all to follow Me. Is the infirmity of your ears painful? Your deafness will be healed, be sure. Be patient. It is the last trial..."

She went on to ask that there be prayers for priests.


How deaf are we-through choice? Do we want to hear what God and His Blessed Mother have to say to us?


Second Message on August 3, 1973


"Many men in this world afflict the Lord. I desire souls to console Him to soften the anger of the Heavenly Father. I wish, with my Son, for souls who will repair by their suffering and their poverty for the sinners and ingrates."


"In order that the world might know His anger, the Heavenly Father is preparing to inflict a great chastisement on all mankind. With my Son, I have intervened so many times to appease the wrath of the Father. I have prevented the coming of calamities by offering Him the sufferings of the Son on the Cross, His Precious Blood, and beloved souls who console Him and form a cohort of victim souls. Prayer, penance and courageous sacrifices can soften the Father's anger. I desire this also from your community, that it love poverty, that it sanctify itself and pray in reparation for the ingratitude and outrages of so many men. Recite the prayer of the Handmaids of the Eucharist with awareness of its meaning: put it into practice: offer (whatever God may send) in reparation for sins. Let each one endeavour, according to capacity and position, to offer herself entirely to the Lord."


"Even in a secular institute prayer is necessary. Already souls who wish to pray are on the way to being gathered. Without attaching too much attention to the form, be faithful and fervent in prayer to console the Master."


Third and the Last message on October 13, 1973:


". . . if men do not repent and better themselves, the Father will inflict a terrible punishment on all humanity. It will be a punishment greater than the deluge, such as one will never have seen before. Fire will fall from the sky and will wipe out a great part of humanity, the good as well as the bad, sparing neither priests nor faithful. The survivors will find themselves so desolate that they will envy the dead. The only arms which will remain for you will be the Rosary and the Sign left by my Son. Each day recite the prayers of the Rosary. With the Rosary, pray for the Pope, the bishops and the priests."


"The work of the devil will infiltrate even into the Church in such a way that one will see cardinals opposing cardinals, bishops against other bishops. The priests who venerate me will be scorned and opposed by their confreres (other priests). Churches and altars will be sacked. The Church will be full of those who accept compromises and the demon will press many priests and consecrated souls to leave the service of the Lord."


"The demon will be especially implacable against the souls consecrated to God. The thought of the loss of so many souls is the cause of my sadness. If sins increase in number and gravity, there will be no longer pardon for them."


". . . Pray very much the prayers of the Rosary. I alone am able still to save you from the calamities which approach. Those who place their confidence in me will be saved."


Sadly these predictions from Our Blessed Mother are showing themselves to be all too true.

Sr Agnus suffers the stigmata and the statue in her convent that was carved from a solid piece of

wood.


The statue wept for the last time on September 15, Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows.


On June 20, 1988, during Bishop lto's visit to Rome, the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith approved the contents of the pastoral letter. Bishop Ito's official recognitions of the occurrences and the Madonna's messages were reported in the October, 1988 issue of the magazine 30 Days. In the August 1990 issue, Cardinal Ratzinger is quoted as saying that "there are no objections to the conclusion of the pastoral letter." Cardinal Ratzinger has invited the Bishop to continue to inform him about the pilgrimages and conversions.


(PS I do apologise for the rushed nature of these posts but homeschooling is taking up a huge amount of time and my 2yr old is quite ill again at the moment. She has not needed to be admitted to hospital since Feb-please say a prayer she can stay out of hospital. She has an immune response problem that means she gets much sicker with simple things than other kids and ends up on drips and NG tubes; really distressing!)

Fatima continues


The children went through a great deal-far more than any parent could wish their child to suffer. We spend time trying to help our children avoid terrible and frightening things but Our Blessed Mother showed them hell. This was not an act of cruelty for she gave them the grace from her Son to bear the vision.
It was not the children who needed to see hell-but we needed to KNOW they had seen it and what they had seen. The cry fro PENANCE, PENANCE PENANCE was not for the little sins of three innocents but for the big sins of those of us who have lived a little longer and a little harder.
The Third secret was revealed in 2000 and because it was generally agreed that much of it had been fulfilled by the Holy Father John Paul the Great-it seems Fatima suddenly seemed finished and less important.
Certainly Pope John Paul the Great was the instrument in bringing down Russian Communism and exposing it for what it is. And there was some short time after that of peace-but it was so short and already we face more war and horror from both the far left/communist countries such as China who support the Islamic warmongers like Iran and so on.
We cannot forget Fatima yet. Our Lady undoubtedly saw the threat of Islam back then. She chose the place named Fatima that according to legend was the name of a Moorish Islamic princess who became betrothed to the Count of Ourem and became a Catholic taking the name Oureana.
While Our Blessed Mother- who stands on the crescent moon - does not mention Islam and the threat it poses she does warn of the next war. We know that the grand Mufti of Jerusalem was intrusmental in the terrible concentration camps and slaughter of the Jews and that Egypt and other Islamic countries fought enthusiastically for the Nazi cause.
Fatima is not over. We are still called to pray and the rosary is still the greatest weapon against Satan and his love of war that we have.

Our Lady of Fatima and Akita


90 yrs ago on 13th October 1917 Our Lady appeared to three children in Fatima Portugal for the 6th and last time. She had visited the children on the 13th of each month since May.

Mary had shown the children, Lucia, Francesco and Jacinta a vision of hell.


"You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace. The war is going to end; but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one will break out during the pontificate of Pius XI. When you see a night illumined by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God that he is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine, and persecutions of the Church and of the Holy Father.


"To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays. If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated. In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me and she will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world."

She went on to tell them that in Portugal tJUN 26, 2000 (VIS) - Given below is the complete translation of the original Portuguese text of the third part of the secret of Fatima, revealed to the three shepherd children at Cova da Iria-Fatima on July 13, 1917, and committed to paper by Sr. Lucia on January 3, 1944:


"I write in obedience to you, my God, who command me to do so through his Excellency the Bishop of Leiria and through your Most Holy Mother and mine.
"After the two parts which I have already explained, at the left of Our Lady and a little above, we saw an Angel with a flaming sword in his left hand; flashing, it gave out flames that looked as though they would set the world on fire; but they died out in contact with the splendor that Our Lady radiated towards him from her right hand: pointing to the earth with his right hand, the Angel cried out in a loud voice: 'Penance, Penance, Penance!'. And we saw in an immense light that is God: 'something similar to how people appear in a mirror when they pass in front of it' a Bishop dressed in White 'we had the impression that it was the Holy Father'. Other Bishops, Priests, men and women Religious going up a steep mountain, at the top of which there was a big Cross of rough-hewn trunks as of a cork-tree with the bark; before reaching there the Holy Father passed through a big city half in ruins and half trembling with halting step, afflicted with pain and sorrow, he prayed for the souls of the corpses he met on his way; having reached the top of the mountain, on his knees at the foot of the big Cross he was killed by a group of soldiers who fired bullets and arrows at him, and in the same way there died one after another the other Bishops, Priests, men and women Religious, and various lay people of different ranks and positions. Beneath the two arms of the Cross there were two Angels each with a crystal aspersorium in his hand, in which they gathered up the blood of the Martyrs and with it sprinkled the souls that were making their way to God." .../THIRD SECRET/... VIS 000626 (380) he Faith would be preserved. This would lead into the third part of the Secret which was not made public until the year 2000.

Sunday, 7 October 2007

Prayer for World Peace

View from the Pews have started a campaign to pray for world peace. God knows we need it.
we need to start with ourselves and our families-our communities and work up to the horrible scary stuff that seems to be simmering with the state of the Middle East and China.

World Kindness Day 2 Dove Prayer

My Birthday day out




Yesterday was my birthday and we had a great family day out. My sister-in-law just happened to phone in the morning because of the postal strike and so we invited her to come along too.

We went to Blists Hill Museum near Iron Bridge in Shropshire.
It's a great place where you get to see how people lived at the turn of the century and learn a little about the coal and iron works that were so much part of that area. The little houses have been transplanted along with their history to the site and someone is there to tell the story. There are real shops selling the kind of stuff you could really have bought back then; traditional soaps, china, ribbons and pins. There's a baker selling beautiful fresh bread still warm from the oven, and a candle maker.
They have a pub with chickens kept in the garden and a cottage with lovely Tamworth pigs in the garden.
An old Clydsdale trots around pulling a cart that people can hitch a ride on and there's a tea shop where my dd and I had tea and scones while the others walked along the cut (canal) to the incline plane.
The place is just great fun.
We came home to a lovely birthday cake made by my daughter with the help of the smalls- who tested the mixture to check it was okay. I knew what the 'secret' cake was made of because they both had ample amounts of it around their faces! LOL
I had a great day and I am getting used to be year older already Chompy










Wednesday, 3 October 2007

faccio la mamma of Antagonist Pots and Pans has tagged me;

1. Do you attend the Traditional Latin Mass or the Novus Ordo?
I attend the Novus Ordo with my family at our parish church. There is not too much abuse and I want to be loyal to the parish despite some of the problems we are having.

2. If you attend the TLM, how far do you drive to get there?
I've never attended a TLM-but should I even want to there is one a few miles away, which I might just attend out of curiosity some time once I have the car crip-adjusted.

3. If you had to apply a Catholic label to yourself, what would it be?
I'm just a bog standard Catholic-loyal to the magisterium and that's it.
4. Are you a comment junkie?
I have spates of commenting-when I have time and then spates on not commenting because I don't have time. But I do try and comment on some blogs particularly if they don't receive many because I think it offers support.
5. Do you go back to read the comments on the blogs you’ve commented on?
If I remember!
6. Have you ever left an anonymous comment on another blog?
Only in as much as I don't use my real name online. I'm afraid I have been badly bitten by those who should know better and so I choose to remain 'hidden'. I think it's safer and last time it was my children who were in the line of fire; never again!
7. Which blogroll would you most like to be on?
Fr Ray's-and I am
8. Which blog is the first one you check?
It varies, but usually Fr Ray and recently Damian Thompson's Holy Smoke
9. Have you met any other bloggers in person?
I have met one a long time ago and my son has met one as well more recently.
10. What are you reading?
I am STILL reading Pope Benedict's Jesus of Nazareth. I am reading Louis de Wolh's Lay Siege to Heaven about St Catherine of Sienna to my oldest daughter; we have story time as part of homeschooling where I read to her. I am also rather regularly reading The Little Red Hen, The Gingerbread Boy, and Little Tuppens at the moment.
And my birthday pressies have arrived!!! So I am about to read The Charlotte Mason Homeschooling series and For the Sake of the Children by Susan Schaeffer Macaulay.
I have decided I MUST find time for all this.

I have to challenge five bloggers to the quiz. This is the greatest challenge; to find five people who will read my blog and who haven't yet done the quiz!-er...can I do that later? Or would anyone like to grab this opportunity?

Heaven.

I've been tagged by Esther to answer this meme:

St. Julian of Norwich describes heaven as a place of "eternal joy". She explains: "But we are not blessedly safe, possessing our endless joy, until we are all in peace and in love, that is to say wholly contented with God and with all his works and with all his judgments, and loving and content with ourselves and with our fellow Christians and with everything which God loves, as is pleasing to love."
This meme has one question:
How do you envision heaven?
As part of my conversion story I have told you that God granted me the great consolation of sensing His Presence in the Tabernacle. He has since removed this and I must accept His Presence on Faith. Sometimes when I am looking at the Tabernacle I try and remember what I once experienced-but it is hard.

Even so I think it was a gentle touch of heaven. It is an absolute sureness of the Love of God, like a warmth that wraps you and fills you.

I think heaven must be a little like that but far far more intense.

I wonder if that Love will pour into us so much that not only will we be able to love God completely, but one another.
I know I will not be a wife in heaven-though I think I will still love my husband; but I will still be a mother and I hope to have all my 'treasures for heaven' pulled through those pearly gates.

I hope I can be with all 8 of my children- the six I have here and the two God has taken.
I also pray that those I love-who are not Christian or who may have struggled to find Grace at the moment of their death may have found that great fount of Mercy and be saved.I pray in particular for a friend who died of his alcoholism.
I envision heaven to be place where we can work much harder for the welfare of others-the Church Militant and the Church Suffering, because we will be so much more focused on God's Will and so much more sure of what that is.

Esther wonders what Blessed Margaret of Costello might look like in heaven.

Of course being Catholic we are not dualist's; we are not souls trapped in a body, we are whole body and soul and so the separation of body and soul at death is temporary and on the Last Day we are resurrected with a resurrected body.

Some time ago I read of a disabled lady who was angry and horrified to be told that in heaven she would not be disabled. She insisted that her disability was part of her. I know Deaf people who think they will be Deaf forever because it is part of how they see themselves.

While she awaits the resurrection Blessed Margaret's body is still deformed-though in corrupt. But I do not believe that when she is raised she will still be so.

And I surely hope that if I get to heaven I wont be taking any wheelchairs, crutches or painkillers with me!!

I believe the saints who say that heaven is full of song and music (and no one is dirging "Bind us Together" or "Love is his word").

Can't think who to tag yet-