washed clean

Hi Again!

During these crazy times, access to the sacraments have been scarce. We’ve had to adapt to streamed masses, reserving spots for mass online ( if your quick enough!) and a whole lot of hand sanitizer….. Let’s just say, it hasn’t been easy.

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But there is something that has brought me (and perhaps you, too?!) A LOT of peace and comfort during the past months and that is:

Confession!

Confession has been the one sacrament that has been relatively easy to receive during the chaos of Covid-19. I don’t know about your experience, but we could make appointments with our parish priest anytime and every Saturday morning from 11:00-12:00 there was “drive through” confession!

I found so much solace in the sacrament of Reconciliation, because it was the closest I could get to Jesus when our masses weren’t taking place.

The Lord knows how painful these times have been and still are. He wants us to receive him again through the Holy Eucharist. He wants to be united, heart to heart. But if we are unable to go to mass, don’t forget to encounter Jesus in confession, as well ! It is a powerful encounter where Jesus himself, through the priest, can heal all our sins, anxieties, mistakes, fears and missed opportunities to love.

I can testify to the power of this healing and life giving encounter with Jesus through confession! Every time I went to confession during the “pandemic”, Jesus was speaking so clearly through the priest about my heart and the areas that needed deep conversion. That kind of realization is humbling, but I drove away every time feeling more loved, joyful, peaceful, motivated and light. It’s a feeling you cannot buy, and one that comes only from the healing touch of Jesus our Saviour.

God bless you all!

right now.

So last Sunday, we were watching the mass with Fr. Mike Schmitz and he said something in the homily that has stayed with me all week. He said ( I’m paraphrasing here) we can’t encounter God in the past or the future, only in the present.

Obvious? Maybe. Profound? Definitely. If we actually believe this, it has the power to change our attitude, our perspective and our life!

How many of us are guilty for playing on repeat the mistakes of the past, or the way things should have gone? Or how about the worries of the future? How much time is wasted thinking about what might happen, what could be, or the perfect scenario?

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What Father Mike is encouraging us to do, is to radically trust in the power of God working in the present moment! Isn’t that freeing?! Just think: actually letting go and surrendering all that happened in your past, and all that you worry and fear for in the future. Just living moment to moment with your Heavenly Father.

Lord Jesus,

You see each one of us right now. You know our hearts, and our thoughts. You see the burdens we carry from the past and the fears that we hold for the future. We surrender all of these moments, worries, anxieties and hopes to you. We want to live in the freedom that you have won for us on the Cross. We want to live with you right now! Come Jesus into our hearts and meet us in this exact moment. Show us how to live a life that is truly present to you and your people. Send your Spirit to guide, inspire and enlighten us. We love and thank you.

Amen.

Quote for the soul ✨

“ …A duty performed solely from a sense of duty may prove wearisome and difficult; the same duty performed out of love becomes easy and pleasant. Love always minimizes the difficulties in its path…” -Fr. William R. Bonniwell, O.P

A beautiful reminder to let authentic love guide our words, actions and thoughts this day ❤️

yes to trust.

It’s really nice to have a solemnity in the middle of Lent! Especially this Lent. I don’t know about you, but I’m finding it hard to fast and keep up my Lenten observances with all this covid chaos. The temptation to eat away my sorrows with chocolate is strong …

Today is the solemnity of the Annunciation of our Lord, and I think this solemnity is exactly what we need to hear right now. Why? Because Mary can teach us something about our current situation.

Mary, received the incredible and UNEXPECTED message that she was to conceive Jesus, by the power of the Holy Spirit. She didn’t request this, she didn’t plan for this, and she surely didn’t know how things would turn out.

Fast forward to today. World leaders are up in arms, countries on lock down, hospitals overloaded, families in isolation, people are dying, infection rates are sky rocketing, and many are anxious and fearful. We didn’t expect this. And we definitely didn’t plan for this…

Perhaps accepting our current situation like Mary, is exactly what we need to be doing! To take on this attitude of the handmaid of the Lord. Of course, Mary’s situation is lightyears away from a comparison to Covid-19- but it’s about finding the right approach to a complicated, and unplanned time, like Mary. She trusted in the Lord, with a trust so pure and loving.

I pray that we, like Mary, can use this time of uncertainty, to trust in the Lord more deeply! To surrender our fears and anxieties to He who came into the world, to redeem his beloved people.

the voice of God

Today I was really inspired by the many uplifting Christian posts I found while pursuing the WordPress “blogosphere”. I was looking through several different faith related categories, and the content was so positive, relatable, genuine and honest. It was refreshing and I praise the Lord that so many people are sharing about their faith life, and walk with Christ. It’s beautiful to read.

These bloggers reminded me of a post that I’ve been meaning to write for awhile but just never got around to. How do we hear the voice of God? How do you know that God is speaking, moving, acting and initiating in your life?  I’ve engaged in this topic with friends before, because I find it fascinating. I mean, if we all have a unique and personal relationship with God, he’s going to speak to us in different ways, right?!

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Since he created us, He also knows the best means of communication to use with us. For example, I often feel God moving in my life through tears. I used to resent this gift because I thought it was embarrassing, or looked weak. However, I’ve grown to appreciate the tears because they are a tangible sign that God is speaking to me. It’s a sign that my heart is melting at the presence of my Lord and Saviour. Sometimes it’s song lyrics that will bring me to tears, a kind gesture of a person or a beautiful prayer in mass.

Another way I hear the Lord is through His words. Not audibly, but in the silence my heart during adoration, or when reading Sacred Scripture. These are beautifully intimate moments with the Lord that I like to record in a journal to meditate more deeply on!

I would love to hear how you hear the voice of God? What does it sound like/feel like to hear the voice of God in your life?

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spiritual seasons.

Hi!

I realized something today. I will never be one of those scheduled blogging types, managing to faithfully post each week… it feels like forever since I’ve written. Sorry for the delay!

There has been a LOT happening in the past few months, because were moving back to CANADA! Back to the land of my ancestors, the land of maple syrup, the land of my childhood. It is a very blessed and beautiful time in my life right now, with so many things (big & small) falling into place. It feels great.

Over the past two years, I didn’t say “things are falling into place” very often. It actually felt like I was constantly faced with one obstacle after the other. Instead of doors opening, doors were slamming. Instead of prayers being answered quickly, waiting was required. Instead of joy overflowing, despair was creeping in.

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I am starting to learn that indeed, there are seasons of the spiritual life. I’m sure there are Saints or theologians who have expressed a similar concept with much greater eloquence… but this is how I have felt the “seasons” lately:

Spring Season– many moments of consolation, growing in the spiritual life, feeling the rays of the Son.

Summer Season; mostly moments of consolation, everything seems to be in bloom, constantly basking in the presence of the Son.

Fall Season– moments of consolation & desolation, lots of change in the spiritual life, seeing yourself/world/God in new “colours”.

Winter Season- primarily moments of desolation, feeling cold and far from the rays of the  Son, faith/spiritual life feeling bleak/grey.

So, whatever season you find yourself in right now, if you can, thank the Lord and remember it won’t last forever! That is sooo much easier said than done. I spent the past two years in pretty wintery conditions… and I definitely wasn’t always praising the Lord for my moments of desolation. But sometimes it takes someone who is in a slightly  “warmer” season, to remind you that you are not alone, it won’t be like this forever, God is faithful, God is working in your life, and the grey skies will turn to blue.

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May God continue to bless and strengthen us as we battle through the spiritual seasons of life. Let’s continue to pray for each other, that we do not take the moments of consolation for granted, or waste the precious moments of suffering.

You are loved! God bless!

glory to God in the highest

Happy New Year Everyone!

On the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord,  I came across a magnificent quote by Saint Gregory the Great (in my Magnificat prayer/mass book). I had recently watched the movie Planet Earth II ( which I highly recommend- very well made, adorable & inspiring)  which rather unexpectedly, renewed in me a sense of wonder, awe and beauty for our home here on earth. So with these sentiments already in my heart, and a thankfulness for God’s gift of nature, I read the following words of Saint Gregory the Great with a blissful and joyful heart:

“When the king of heaven was born, the heavens knew that he was God because they immediately sent forth a star; the sea knew him because it allowed him to walk upon it; the earth knew him because it trembled when he died; the sun knew him because it hid the rays of its light” 

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Even the great and uncontrollable weather systems and created world bow before the King of the universe. The earth and all it’s beauty are simply a glimpse into the wonderful being of God, our Father and Creator. If we appreciate and are amazed by the complexity of the galaxies, the seasons that bring forth change, the animals and plants that bring life, then we have received an incredible gift. A gift meant to bless us, amaze us, and ultimately, bring us back to the Giver of the gift. Back to God. Back to the Author of beauty.

I pray that 2020 be a year of deep encounter with the wonders of God that have been painted all around us. May the black and white view of the world, that so often threatens to bring us down, or deceive us, be replaced with a vivid and magnificently bright and colourful lens.

God bless!

Sweet Scotland 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿

Hello Again!

Today is a different “style” of blog post, because I’m not writing about any specific topic, but rather letting you in on a few moments and photos of my time in Scotland!

During the trip, I really felt my spirit being lifted as I soaked in the magical feeling, historic beauty, and stunning architecture of Edinburgh. I couldn’t stop saying “this is soooo pretty” or ” I need to take a photo of this”.  I was like a little girl again, enjoying all the sights, smells and moments, no matter how small or insignificant they were!

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Following the river through the city was one stunning view after the other!

Then today, I heard a podcast all about how we ought to marvel and wonder at the beauty of creation! We are lifted and filled with joy when we see the world around us like children again. Children aren’t over serious and bound by their schedules. They are free to enjoy, laugh, jump, sing and shout as they truly live, wonder and delight in each new day.

One of the women on the podcast shared a quote by G.K Chesterton and I think it’s incredibly profound, especially for our time when we’ve become “too busy” to rest, to watch and to wonder:

“We are perishing for want of wonder, not for want of wonders”

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Oh just a castle in the middle of the city.. no big deal!

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The gorgeous view from our apartment.

I must say, I will definitely be going back to Scotland (hopefully again soon) and I  recommend traveling to Edinburgh for anyone who is looking for a holiday destination!

Even though I’m back to rainy Berlin, I’m going to try and keep this attitude of child-like wonder in my heart. I think it’s such a great way to see the world and people around me. How do you wonder and marvel at the world around you?! Have you experienced something beautiful today that made you stop and stare, something that spoke to your heart, or something that gave you joy?! Please share below : )