To Leave and Yet to Stay

13262-window-rain.800w.tnIt is sad to realize that as so many believe Jesus is Present in the Blessed Sacrament, they so seldom visit Him. Men travel across the oceans to see ancient ruins, paintings, landscapes, celebrities and mountains, but they do not think of going into a simple church around the corner to visit the Creator of all beauty.

Man complains of his tensions, hang-ups and frustrations and for these human weaknesses he consumes bottles of pills and other remedies. He spends time and money trying to ascertain who he is and how he came to be. He is tormented by his past and entertains visions of grandeur or despair for the future.

His worries are called "mature concern" and his failures are only the result of other people's lack of cooperation. He covers up his faults and parades his least act of virtue. There are few men who know themselves and even fewer who are able to accept that knowledge with humility.

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He Chose Me To Be

heaven-2We did not happen to be—we were chosen by God to exist. Before time began God chose each one of us and this choice was deliberate. God saw all the possible human beings He might have created throughout the history of the world. Out of possible billions of human beings that might have existed in God's mind—His Eye rested on each one of us and then stopped looking and said, "You shall be." He saw all who could have been and decided they would not be. His providence placed us in a time and state of life that would bring out our greatest potential.

...We reflect His eternity, for once His Will called us out of nothingness, we became immortal—our soul will never die.

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Sweeping the Temple Clean

repentance-mirrorGod has created us to be holy. In our daily efforts towards that end we find within ourselves various attitudes and motives that are hindrances to arriving at that holy state.

Many Christians strive for a form of goodness that is on the border of sin and lukewarmness. They do not disobey the commandments, but neither do their lives change. Each confession is basically a repetition of every other confession. Each day's trial brings on more frustrations. Each heartache leads to new forms of bitterness.

For many Christians prayer is directed at God rather than to God. Christianity becomes solely a religion and a vehicle by which they calm their consciences or petition the Supreme Being for daily needs. There is a separation—a great gulf between themselves and God. It is almost like a great chasm over which one shouts for help in the hope that an invisible Being on the other side might be listening.

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Inside The Kingdom

largePeople have argued for centuries about Heaven. Some say it is a place and others say it is a state, but Scripture indicates it is both. It tells us in many places the Kingdom of Heaven is "within" and "among" us. Jesus tells us, "No one has gone up to Heaven except the One who came down from Heaven,—the Son of Man who is in Heaven." (Jn. 3:13)

Here we have a clear indication that Heaven is both a place and a state of soul. Jesus came down from Heaven, and because of His union with the Father, He was in Heaven.

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Holiness in Action

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Jesus dealt with everyone He met on the level of light, virtue and generosity at which their souls had arrived...

Jesus knew what Judas would do when He called him, but this did not prevent Him from calling him. He dealt with Judas on the level he was at the moment. Judas, at that moment was zealous, eager and looking forward to the Kingdom. Jesus accepted him where he was and as he was. He continued to love him by giving him light, warning him that we cannot serve two masters and enduring his bad dispositions.

Our reaction to people is the opposite of Jesus. We judge the motives we do not see, short-change possibilities by the remembrance of past performances and then lose hope for any change that might occur in the future.

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Holiness is for Everyone

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Saints are ordinary people, who love Jesus, try to be like Him, are faithful to the duties of their state in life, sacrifice themselves for their neighbor and keep their hearts and minds tree of this world.

They live in the world, but rise above its mediocre standards. They enjoy living because life is a challenge, not an indulgence. They may not understand the reason for the cross, but faith gives them that special quality to find hope within it. They do understand they are to walk in their Master's footsteps and everything that happens to them is turned to their good.

Saints are ordinary people, who do what they do for the love of Jesus-say what they must say without fear-love their neighbor even when they are cursed by him and live without regret over yesterday or fear of tomorrow.

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Living Prayer

st-paulGod has given each one of us a gift greater than a thousand I.B.M. machines. It is called a Memory and everything that passes through our five senses is stored in this faculty.

We can recall the odor of a fried steak smothered with onions and our mouths water.

Everything we read is stored in our memory even though our recall may not bring to mind the information we desire.

Many Christians are tortured by this faculty—tortured because of the guilt of past sins, resentments over old injuries or regrets over past omissions.

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His Pain Like Mine

Christ-the-HealerWe often look at Jesus with an attitude of predestination - a cold, hard-hearted acceptance of His sufferings and pain. We think, at least in our subconscious, that somehow He had to do what He did and so we sluff it all off with a shrug of our shoulders, without a thought of the awesome wonder of a suffering God. We cannot comprehend a love that desires to feel our misery. The only love we understand is the kind that warms our heart and affects our emotions. We prefer that our love feels pity or sympathy, but not the actual pain of the one we love.

We may see someone with cancer, but we would never desire to actually feel every sharp, throbbing pain. We often say we would rather suffer than see those we love suffer, but this is for the most part, a mere expression of sympathy.

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Love Is Not Loved

Christ and the sinner-olamnunsI am not like a pebble on the beach—a grain of sand on the seashore or just one of millions of human beings past, present and future. No, I am a unique human being loved by God as if I were an only child—the only fruit of His creative powers.

He loves me. He created me out of nothing—breathed a soul into my body, endowed me with a personality destined to give Him a unique kind of glory for all eternity because He loves me.

Jesus is the perfect image of the Father. When I look at Jesus, I see the Father—I see Love—I see the Spirit and The Spirit loves me.

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The Fruits of His Love

Mother-Angelica-restless-pilgrim-warmIn the past I was called upon to be sympathetic, which gave me a feeling of sorrow for the pain and disappointments of my neighbor.

Today I am expected to have empathy—that disposition by which I put myself in another person's shoes, feel what he feels, understand his actions and judge with more compassion.

In the past I was expected to lend an ear to a neighbor's problems or opinions and it was enough to be attentive.

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Join in the Joy

If you feel you may have a vocation to our life of adoration and contemplation in the rich Clarian tradition of humility and service then please contact our Vocation Directress.

Te Deum Laudamus!

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Our Lady of the Angels
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