Monday, December 1, 2014

Love in the family and prayer

As we begin the month of December and the Advent season - in preparation for Christmas Day; I invite you to light a candle in your hearts, today. The warmth of your 'heart' candle will grow as the love of God grows in you. You will then be most ready to receive the bestest gift of all: Jesus (the reason for the season, as some say...).

I will be offering prayers in my little family for your family's intentions during this most holy time of year. Let the goodness and kindness flow from your hearts unto the world... God will give as much love as we ask long as it is for our good and the good of all!

Happy Birthday!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

The Family Fully Alive National Student Contest

This is a chance for young people to be creative as they respond to a most important question in our time.

The Diocese of Kalamazoo in collaboration with the Knights of Columbus, invite students across the country, in grades 4th to 12th, to present their artistic interpretation of the theme: “The Family Fully Alive”. Any student residing in the United States in grades 4th through 12th (attending Catholic schools or in Public schools who attend faith formation/catechism classes or are homeschooled and are affiliated with a Catholic Church/Parish), is invited to take part in “The Family Fully Alive” National Student Contest.

The following is a brief summary of the national contest guidelines:

Grades 4th to 8th: Submit a poem (up to 30 lines), or an essay of 150-500 words, either clearly handwritten or typed (double-spaced, 12 point font, and 1 inch margins). Submit art (painting, drawing) or submit an original musical composition or video. On the back of the submission, print your name, age, school - including city, phone number, as well as the name of your teacher. Please review official criteria for national contest. Submit official Kalamazoo Diocese National Student Contest Cover Sheet (one per entry).

Grades 9th to 12th: Submit a poem (up to 30 lines), or an essay of 250-500 words, typed, double-spaced, 12 point font and 1 inch margins. Submit art (painting, drawing, other) or an original musical composition or video (as per official criteria for national contest). On the back of each submission, print your name, age, school including city, phone number, as well as the name of your teacher. Submit official Kalamazoo Diocese National Student Contest Cover Sheet (one per entry).

For complete contest rules, please visit the website at: or send e-mail to: Socorro  All entries: art, poems, essays, music, songs and videos must be postmarked no later than December 15th, 2014, and sent to:

“The Family Fully Alive” National Student Contest
Secretariat for Parish Life & Lay leadership
Diocese of Kalamazoo
215 N. Westnedge Avenue
Kalamazoo, MI 49007

Friday, September 12, 2014

Our Baptismal Call

The public life of Jesus began with His Baptism on the shore of the Jordan River...
It ended with Jesus commanding the Apostles to
"go and make disciples of all, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that He had commanded them."

(Matthew 28:19-20)
When we are baptized...we are claimed for Christ...
What does this mean?
- it means we are called to reach out and minister to others
- it means we are called to share the Good News
- it means we are called to be both: servants and leaders
Are we living out our call today?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

What if pain is in the PRESENT moment?

Today, a friend died. This is a cause for much sorrow and pain...
How can I be grateful? How can I survive the agony of grief?

Today, my house was flooded, and we lost many precious little family treasures...
How do we stay calm and serene in spite of the stress of such material loss?
How do we gain the strength and courage to face the 'clean-up' that lies ahead?

Today, my aging body aches all over...
My knees are swollen from head is hurting from sinus congestion...I can hardly get around much anymore...How do I give thanks for the miracle of life? I am breathing...I'm still able to give thanks for all that I feel and experience this day.

As I look out the window, I see sunshine. There is warmth and light in the air...Hope fills my spirit as I breathe in (inhale) the 'good' (the oxygen and the Holy Spirit)...and I remember to breathe out (exhale) the nasty stuff in my lungs (carbon dioxide, anxiety, fear, impatience with self and others...)

Life is worth living to the max! The good, the bad, and the ugly...It all makes us ALIVE...

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Be present! Ways to be living in the moment...

How can I be really PRESENT to each moment lived?

1- Be grateful. (Is the glass "half empty or half full"?)
2- Be intentional. (say "hello nice day!" to people you meet...and mean it! The good comes right back at ya!) ("Don't worry, be happy" This really works!)
3- Be still (like a child who is looking at life for the first time...)
4- Take your time along the way...Schedules and agenda-keeping can wait! Let an impromptu/unplanned moment linger...When did you notice a beautiful sunset on your way home from work - while you sit in traffic!
5- Breathe it in! The good in each moment slips away when we fail to be truly present. For good or not-so-good...each moment brings an opportunity for a life fully lived! Intensity may vary. The main ingredient to being fully alive: is to be fully present!

What if pain is in the PRESENT moment?
I'll tell you more in my next post!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Are you concerned about a family member or friend experiencing abuse?

“Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.”           – Matthew 11:28

Once you recognize the abuse, know you are not to blame and

you are not alone. No one deserves to be abused.

This is not just the law in America.

This is the teaching of the Catholic Church.
Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline:
800-799-SAFE (7233) - 24 hours, toll free

From the U.S. Catholic Bishops’ Committee:
When I Call for Help: A Pastoral Response to Domestic Violence against Women:
We acknowledge that violence has many forms, many causes, and many victims—men as well as women. The Catholic Church teaches that violence against another person in any form fails to treat that person as someone worthy of love. Instead, it treats the person as an object to be used.
Learn more about how the Church cares at
Visit for more Catholic resources


Friday, June 13, 2014

Every day offers a choice...

What sort of reading,
what sort of TV programs,
what sort of conversations,

what sort of friends will we choose to welcome into our home?

The Word of God reminds us ever so gently...
yet with a sense of urgency:

"Walk while you have the light,
so that darkness may not overcome you." (John 12:35)

"Whatever is true,
whatever is honorable,

whatever is just,
whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely,
whatever is gracious,
if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise,
think about these things."
(Philippians 4:8)

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Failure turned success

Instead of becoming sad, demoralized and lose motivation, be a person who turns failures into learning experiences.

Why not make a list of factors related to this 'failure' or unattained goal...that are within your control?
1.- my effort 2.- preparation 3.- planning 4.- other approaches to take, etc...

In this way, not only will you learn to adapt to circumstances (which may be 'beyond' your control)...You will also learn new ways of finding 'the good' in all situations. You will continue to uncover the true dignity and worth that lies within you.

Remember: you are made in the image of God...that in itself is a great success in your life, already!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

A married man as saint

Blessed Ceferino Gimenez Malla was a married layman from Spain. Ceferino and his wife Teresa had no children of their own but adopted Teresa’s niece. Ceferino had a reputation for holiness and died defending a Catholic priest from soldiers. Find out more about this man's life at: Blessed Ceferino Gimenez Malla 

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Praying for Pope Francis

Today we celebrate one year in the life of Pope Francis as pope...
It was one year ago today, that he became Pope Francis (Papa Francisco).
May the Lord continue to bless him.
May we become a more united Church under his leadership.
May we continue to grow in Faith, Hope and Love.

God bless Pope Francis!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

In Times of Trial...

Lord Jesus, you came to live among your people to experience all that we experience, so that no matter what our trials may be, you would understand. Yet you came not only to bring us compassion, but far more importantly, you came to bring us healing.

The prophet Isaiah wrote of you: "Ours were the sufferings he bore; ours the sorrows he carried."

Our trials, as well as our sins, you carried to the cross and through the cross to Resurrection.

I now take refuge in your loving heart and I give over to you...all my anxiety.
I believe you will take care of me and all who put their trust in you. I thank you for your care.

"Cast all your anxiety on him, for he cares for you..." (1 Peter 5:7)

Monday, March 10, 2014

Are we ready to listen?

Noise is in the air...
Noise is almost everywhere...

Some noise can be good...
Some noise is not so good...

Do I recognize the difference?
Do I contribute to the noise in a good way?
Do I remain silent?

Am I ready to listen?
Do I want to listen?
How can my listening be good?

In the presence of life...
I'm in awe, and ready to listen.
Will you please listen to my little voice, too?

Friday, February 28, 2014


Do you know what this means?
#the gift of presence... Or #thegiftofpresence

Emphasis on Faith

As parents, we need to recognize our responsibility to be the No. 1 educators of our children, teaching them about faith in order to protect them from evil.

We can choose to change the world or let the world change us. I believe that the best resource we have to encounter God in a personal way is by praying with the Bible. The Gospel has the power to change the world. In these times, many youth have become 'bored' with God, and become susceptible to the secular gods in the world. Most of the youth who have gone astray have not known or encountered persons/parents who witness about God as love and compassion. 

I choose to focus on the good. I choose to grow in my personal faith in order to share it with my spouse and children in a loving and truthful way. I can choose death and the road to let myself be carried away in the flooding waters of the negative evils (in movies, places, programs, persons, etc.) or I can choose life and the road to let myself be carried away in the flooding waters since my Baptism.

Which do you choose?

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

On praying together as family

“Only by praying together with their children can a father and mother penetrate the innermost depths of their children’s hearts and leave an impression that the future events in their lives will not be able to efface.”

John Paul the Great, writing in Familiaris Consortio

For Your Marriage - Por Tu Matrimonio

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