New Beginnings Catholic Mamas: April/Easter thread - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 57 Old 04-10-2006, 11:48 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Lent is officially over, as of yesterday - time for a new thread!

Who's attending the Vigil this year, and who is going on Easter Sunday? We haven't been to the Vigil since I was confirmed (and pregnant!) in 2000, but our group is singing for all Holy Week services and the Vigil this year. I'm glad to be attending the vigil, but I'm worried about the little ones getting tired/grumpy and I'll miss the release of purple and yellow balloons on Sunday morning.

So far, the weather is not looking too promising; which may put the kabosh on the annual Easter egg hunt at my mom's house.

No school on Friday - we'll be coloring Easter eggs at my mom's in the morning!

I'm trying to come up with new ideas for the Easter basket this year, so Miss B doesn't feel left out. She can have chocolate and complex carbs, but not sugary jellybeans and marshmallow Peeps and stuff like that. I'm trying to avoid sugar-free stuff b/c of the artificial sweeteners. I think the Easter Bunny will also be bringing the Chronicles of Narnia DVD

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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#2 of 57 Old 04-10-2006, 12:59 PM
 
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This is a very special Easter for our family. DH has been attending RCIA (and me with him). He will be making his Sacraments at Mass on Easter Sunday morning. Easter has always been my favorite holiday and it's even more special this year. I will miss our RCIA class. I've enjoyed it and learned so much, even though I'm a "cradle Catholic" who attended Catholic schools.

My girls and their cousins will be attending Mass to see Daddy make his Communion and Confirmation. We are planning an Easter Egg hunt later on Sunday. I hope the weather is nice. If not, we will be hunting for eggs in the house. I know what you mean about the candy. My middle dd is very sensitive to artificial colors. I really thought she was ADD until I took all that junk out of her diet. It's really tough to find candy for the egg hunt without all the dyes. We did get some and I got some Easter stickers to put in some of the eggs to reduce the amount of candy. We do other things in the baskets like hair accessories, books, small toys, side walk chalk etc. to cut down on the candy load. Of course, they still get the chocolate bunny!

I took all my girls off the dyes, so dd doesn't really feel left out. I figure it's no good for any of us. I may relent and get some peeps, though. Hopefully, my middle dd won't care. I may get her an extra something that the others don't have to soften the blow. She really does get it. She knows she feels better without that junk, no more tummy aches, calmer, etc. I really don't want her to feel left out. She hasn't had a drop of candy or chocolate because she gave it up for Lent. Since she's only in Kindergarten, I've been really proud of her resolve. She skipped the candy, even when Daddy forgot and brought home Hershey bars as a treat one night.
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#3 of 57 Old 04-11-2006, 01:10 AM
 
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Originally Posted by writermommy
This is a very special Easter for our family. DH has been attending RCIA (and me with him). He will be making his Sacraments at Mass on Easter Sunday morning. Easter has always been my favorite holiday and it's even more special this year. I will miss our RCIA class. I've enjoyed it and learned so much, even though I'm a "cradle Catholic" who attended Catholic schools.
That's great!

I'm not sure exactly what we're doing yet. Dh works odd hours (3rd shift) and we only have one car, so...
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#4 of 57 Old 04-11-2006, 10:04 AM
 
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Well, dh is an Anglican minister, and we have a Good Friday and EAster Sunday service, so we'll be at both of those. I would love to go to a vigil at the local catholic church, but since ds never makes it in the service past the bible readings, I don't think it would be realistic right now. Since ds is only 19 mos, we'll probably just get him a tiny chocolate bunny and a few jellybeans. I might try dying eggs with him, but he's big into POURING right now, so I haven't decided wether that's a good idea or if I should wait until next year. Ironically, we probably won't do anything too big for Easter. Holidays are pretty low key around here, because by the time we get through all the services dh is usually pretty tired (its only his second year in minstry).

Its kind of funny, because I've been to two Easter vigils. One was really cool, at the Benadictine Monastary in Mission, BC, and the monks sing the service and its really amazing. But the other one was in this really strict latin mass church that was across from our old house in B.C. And we just saw the fire, so we decided to go and check out the service. But it was really uncomfortable because I was the only woman in pants, and I didn't have something to cover my head, and all the rest of the women had their heads covered. So we sat at the back, and we were leafing through the books trying to find where they were in the service, and then an usher came along and took our books. We thought he was going to find the right page for us so we could follow the service, and he took them away and gave them to some of the youth who didn't have any books. Needless to say, I didn't stay for the whole service. I was so mad I left and went home. Anyway, that was one of my classic unwelcoming church service experiences. It was pretty funny.

Jill , mom to Andrew (09/04), Aaron(01/07), and Emma (11/09)
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#5 of 57 Old 04-11-2006, 04:28 PM
 
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I've been lurking here, just now posting. I'm a strange one--uncatechized catholic. My parents baptized me, but left it at that. I started RCIA in September to learn more, actually planning to 'convert' then found out part-way through that I was already Catholic. I will be confirmed at the Easter Vigil though, finishing the sacraments of initiation.

DH is not catholic (baptized & raised presbyterian, he's on the negative side about Catholicism, which isn't very comfortable at times). Kids are unbaptized, still deciding:-)

I thought Lent didn't end until Maundy/Holy Thursday?

Mom to DD1 (11/1999),  DD2 (07/2003), and DS (11/2012), all born at home and cloth diapered. 

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#6 of 57 Old 04-11-2006, 06:09 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by jilly
So we sat at the back, and we were leafing through the books trying to find where they were in the service, and then an usher came along and took our books. We thought he was going to find the right page for us so we could follow the service, and he took them away and gave them to some of the youth who didn't have any books. Needless to say, I didn't stay for the whole service. I was so mad I left and went home. Anyway, that was one of my classic unwelcoming church service experiences. It was pretty funny.
Nice. How very unwelcoming.


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Originally Posted by miss_sonja
I will be confirmed at the Easter Vigil though, finishing the sacraments of initiation.
How exciting, congratulations! And welcome to our tribe!

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DH is not catholic (baptized & raised presbyterian, he's on the negative side about Catholicism, which isn't very comfortable at times).
Well, that was once me - I am proof positive that even a rigid Presbyt can open up to the Catholic church!


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I thought Lent didn't end until Maundy/Holy Thursday?
Lent officially ends at the beginning of Holy Week, which is Passion Sunday.

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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#7 of 57 Old 04-12-2006, 01:43 AM
 
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For those who don't remember me, I'm currently undecided about which church to affiliate with and am currently attending an Episcopal church. I've thought about the Catholic and Orthodox churches but haven't been convinced yet.

Our church is keeping us pretty busy with services every day this week. We normally just have them on Sunday and Wednesday. DD loves going to church so she has been excited to be able to go every day.

The Sunday after Easter we are having our daughters baptized. We still haven't figured out who to choose for godparents. Its kind of hard when all of your friends and family are Church of Christ and Baptist.


Skellbelle, Thanks for sharing your prison experiences with us. I feel like I have to live vicariously though you since they won't let me bring my baby into prison with me.

Jilly, that's a crazy story. I thought I had visited some unfriendly churches but that one takes the cake.
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#8 of 57 Old 04-13-2006, 12:47 AM
 
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YAYAYAYAYA! I found you finally!
Ok, now that the excitement is gone....
writermommy: tell your dh CONGRATS!! It will be my fourth year as a catholic this year! I know how wonderful it felt to be confirmed, so tell him my special rcia prayers this year are for him!
We will be attending Vigil this year...dh's parents, who have always been very religious, have suddenly, as of last year, decided not to go to church anymore! But I got them to come with us to vigil...it will be in our old church, our "home" church. with all of our friends, and the people who supported me through rcia. we live three hours away now!
We are going to holy thursday and good friday services here in our church though.
jilly: that is just appalling! geez....
I look forward to chatting more with you ladies....If not before this weekend then HAVE A WONDERFUL EASTER! i know i will enjoy my baby's first!

Jill, mama to three fiery girlies and a sweet baby boy: Grace, 11.30.2005,  Ayla, 3.22.2008, Norah 9.5.09, Reed 8.19.11 & dfs Gage 2.29.12   angel1.gif x4
 

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#9 of 57 Old 04-16-2006, 03:00 PM
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Happy Easter to all!
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#10 of 57 Old 04-17-2006, 06:16 PM
 
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Happy Easter!

We went the Easter Vigil and it was exciting and a bit surreal to think that this time next year, we'll be baptized and brought into the Church!
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#11 of 57 Old 04-18-2006, 12:27 AM
 
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We had a nice but very busy Holy Week. I am still recovering and it was 100 degrees here today, so I am just UGH!

Dd's birthday is Thursday and her party is Saturday, so things will be a bit crazy this week too!!
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#12 of 57 Old 04-18-2006, 01:52 PM
 
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Originally Posted by thistle
Dd's birthday is Thursday!
So is mine!! When I was in my early 20's I got teased because of the date 4/20 is some drug term or something.

We went to the Easter Vigil. I don't think we'll do it again next year because of the boys. They were up way too late and then were cranky the next day.
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#13 of 57 Old 04-18-2006, 03:25 PM
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Dd's birthday is Thursday
Mine is today, but I won't say how old I am
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#14 of 57 Old 04-18-2006, 04:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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: Diane!!!!!!

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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#15 of 57 Old 04-19-2006, 10:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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For a 13-yo kid who was hit by a train right by my church on Monday night. He was thrown 50 ft & is in critical condition. I can only imagine what his mama must be going through right now.

:

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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#16 of 57 Old 04-19-2006, 11:56 AM
 
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Hi ladies! I can't believe I've been hanging around MDC for nearly a year and just recently discovered there's a Catholic board here! In my experience it's been rare to find Catholic & crunchy mamas, so it's great to know you're all here!

And I figured Easter is as good a time as any to say hello and introduce myself - I'm Kerri, 28, DH is Steve, 39, and we have 3 little ones so far - Teresa is 3 1/2, Madeleine will be 2 next month, and Andrew is still inside but hopefully not for too, too long because I'm only in my 32nd week but feeling absolutely HUGE already and I don't know how I'll make it to mid-June!! Hoping and praying for early June!

Anyway, we are from the Washington, D.C. area orginally but moved to PA (outside of Philly) for DH's job about a year and half ago. I'm a SAHM and an LLL Leader, we homeschool for both religious and academic reasons (we started this year with preschool for Teresa) and I'm active in TORCH (the national Catholic homeschool group) and in pro-life work in our community. Before becoming a mommy I worked in international development (mostly in Africa) and also in refugee relief for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Although I generally hate terms like this because they're kind of sterotypical and mean different things to different people, we would consider ourselves "conservative" Catholics meaning we are 100% committed to the teachings of the Magisterium and try to live our lives as faithfully as we can to our Church. I hope that is OK to say - I noticed from looking at some old threads when I found this group that evidently a while back there were, sadly, some issues between the more conservative and more liberal Catholics here? (Again I hate those terms, but for lack of better words.....) So I hope I'm welcome here but if not I will understand....:

So that's a little about us - I wish you all a blessed Easter Season and hope to get to know you all better soon! Oh, and to answer the O.P.'s question, we went to the 10:15 am Mass for Easter, for several reasons - I just love going on Easter morning, we needed Holy Saturday night to finish preparations for Easter anyway, and Maddy is at a challenging age right now and does much better at morning Masses than at evening ones - as we confirmed at the Mass of the Lord's Supper on Thursday night when she was trying to get a baby doll that another little girl was holding, seated in the pew behind us - and she ended up, in a split second while I was turned around and looking at my other daughter, standing on the pew, reaching out and leaning too far over and tumbling headfirst over the back of the pew into the laps of the people behind us : who fortunately turned out to be friends of ours from one of our homeschool groups and, having several little ones themselves, had very quick reflexes and caught her. But everyone around us gasped as she went flying headfirst over the pew and I was about to crawl under the pew myself....!!! So yeah, we figured mornings are better right now

Quote:
Originally Posted by skellbelle
Lent officially ends at the beginning of Holy Week, which is Passion Sunday.
Actually - forgive me for being new here and saying this - but Lent ends at the start of the Mass of the Lord's Supper on Holy Thursday. It's different for other churches though - in Protestant and Orthodox churches it varies, for some it ends on Passion/Palm Sunday and for many Eastern churches it doesn't end until Holy Saturday, the day before Easter. But in the Catholic Church it's definitely the evening of Holy Thursday - Lent ends and the Triduum begins then. FYI, Catholics also skip Sundays (because they are always days of celebration that trump everything else) when counting the 40 days of Lent, which is why many people don't think we can add correctly It's 40 days from Ash Wednesday to Holy Thursday excluding Sundays. See the Glossary at the bottom of the FAQ page on my former employer's website http://www.usccb.org/nab/faq.shtml : "Lent: A forty-day season of penance and conversion to prepare for Easter and baptism (or the renewal of baptismal vows). Lent begins on Ash Wednesday and ends before the Mass of the Lord's Supper on Holy Thursday."

Kerriintactlact.gif blessed single mama to Teresa 8/2/02blahblah.gif, Madeleine 5/28/04dust.gif, Andrew 6/25/06jammin.gif, and Isabelle ribboncesarean.gif11/27/08energy.gif

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#17 of 57 Old 04-19-2006, 12:15 PM
 
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I've been having this Lent discussion with one of my Catholic friends. I, too, am Catholic, 12 years of Catholic school and a year of Catholic grad school and I never once heard of Catholics skipping Sundays during Lent. Are we the only Catholics who have never heard of this?
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#18 of 57 Old 04-19-2006, 12:38 PM
 
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Originally Posted by rubyred
I've been having this Lent discussion with one of my Catholic friends. I, too, am Catholic, 12 years of Catholic school and a year of Catholic grad school and I never once heard of Catholics skipping Sundays during Lent. Are we the only Catholics who have never heard of this?
No, you're not the only ones - my own mother still doesn't believe me despite my providing her with about 800 references to that effect My parents are not very religious (my father is not even Christian) and my mother is always saying, "You call yourself a devout Catholic and you have what you gave up for Lent on Sundays? That's cheating!" I keep trying to get her to sit down with a calendar and count up the 40 days!

Seriously, I think it wasn't emphasized (and maybe still isn't) in all places, but every Sunday, regardless of what liturgical season it falls in, is a day of celebration because the Resurrection truimphs over everything else. But there's a corollary to this, though - and this is the part some people - like my mom - don't like - while all Sundays, even the ones in Lent, are for celebrating, all Fridays, even the ones NOT in Lent, are for penance. For some reason many people think the opposite - that we have to do penance even on Sundays during Lent, and that we no longer have any obligation to do penance on Fridays throughout the year. Vatican II said we still have to make a sacrifice on all Fridays - just that on the ones outside of Lent, it doesn't *have* to be meat if you'd rather give up something else instead. HTH.

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#19 of 57 Old 04-19-2006, 12:49 PM
 
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Thanks. I seriously thought I was going crazy. When my friend and I had the conversation, I called my aunt. She is very knowledgable about the Church, and my cousin is getting his PhD in Catholic studies so I figured if anyone would know, she would. And she did. She told me count up the days from Ash Wednesday to Easter, so I did. Yeah. But then isn't it kind of pointless to give something up for Lent? I can give up anything for 6 days. Knowing that I could have it on Sunday sort of takes the difficulty of sacrifice away (although knowing I could have it on Sunday and don't, well, there's sacrifice in that too). Giving something up for 40 days is the tough part. Or 46 or however long it is from Ash Wednesday to Easter. Maybe next year I'll do what my aunt's priest suggests to them- instead of giving something up, commit to sacrificing extra time to do charitable work.
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#20 of 57 Old 04-19-2006, 12:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BundleFishMama
I noticed from looking at some old threads when I found this group that evidently a while back there were, sadly, some issues between the more conservative and more liberal Catholics here? (Again I hate those terms, but for lack of better words.....) So I hope I'm welcome here but if not I will understand....:

Of course you are welcome here!
Just be aware that this is a very diverse tribe of Catholic women - the "New Beginnings" tribe was created specifically to end the abovementioned "issues"; and you might want to know that the conservative & Trad Catholic mamas did create their own separate board at AIMOO. We seem to do well here, as long as we all respect each other's differences.



Quote:
Actually - forgive me for being new here and saying this - but Lent ends at the start of the Mass of the Lord's Supper on Holy Thursday. It's different for other churches though - in Protestant and Orthodox churches it varies, for some it ends on Passion/Palm Sunday and for many Eastern churches it doesn't end until Holy Saturday, the day before Easter. But in the Catholic Church it's definitely the evening of Holy Thursday - Lent ends and the Triduum begins then.
Depends on whom you ask. Our Deacon tells us every year on Passion Sunday that Lent has ended. Google the subject and you get all sorts of answers.

Technically, with the arrival Passion Sunday we are in Holy Week. Personally, I have trouble with the concept of a Lent/Holy Week duality (it just doesn't make sense to me); but either way we are still on our journey to the Resurrection, and that's all that really matters IMO. The rest is just semantics, and has little bearing on the "bigger picture" of my faith. I just tend not to get bogged down in those details.

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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#21 of 57 Old 04-19-2006, 12:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by rubyred
Maybe next year I'll do what my aunt's priest suggests to them- instead of giving something up, commit to sacrificing extra time to do charitable work.
This was suggested to us, as well - give up YOURSELF instead of something you LIKE.

I think it's a brilliant concept.

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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#22 of 57 Old 04-19-2006, 01:00 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skellbelle
Of course you are welcome here!
Just be aware that this is a very diverse tribe of Catholic women - the "New Beginnings" tribe was created specifically to end the abovementioned "issues"; and you might want to know that the conservative & Trad Catholic mamas did create their own separate board at AIMOO. We seem to do well here, as long as we all respect each other's differences.
Sounds good - I was wondering what the "New Beginnings" referred to! Thanks for the welcome!

What is AIMOO? (dumb question probably, but I don't recognize the acronym!)

Just wondering - are there any other homeschooling mamas here? (anywhere on the Catholic spectrum?)

Kerriintactlact.gif blessed single mama to Teresa 8/2/02blahblah.gif, Madeleine 5/28/04dust.gif, Andrew 6/25/06jammin.gif, and Isabelle ribboncesarean.gif11/27/08energy.gif

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#23 of 57 Old 04-19-2006, 01:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by BundleFishMama
Sounds good - I was wondering what the "New Beginnings" referred to! Thanks for the welcome!

What is AIMOO? (dumb question probably, but I don't recognize the acronym!)

Just wondering - are there any other homeschooling mamas here? (anywhere on the Catholic spectrum?)
AIMOO is an internet bulletin board hosting site. If you do some searching on the old Catholic mama threads (not "NB") you will find a link to their board.

If you want to know more about the NB tribe, search for our threads in Oct & Nov of 2004.

ekblad8 (Amy) is a hs'ing, crunchy Catholic mama. She rarely posts here anymore but you can PM her.

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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#24 of 57 Old 04-19-2006, 01:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rubyred
Maybe next year I'll do what my aunt's priest suggests to them- instead of giving something up, commit to sacrificing extra time to do charitable work.
Good idea! Our priest also suggested doing something (more prayer, more charitable work, etc.) as opposed to giving something up, so I tried that this year myself - my prayer life was kind of stagnating before Lent so instead of my usual giving up chocolate or something like that, I decided to commit to praying the Rosary every night during Lent, with more concentration and devotion (as opposed to my usual multitasking, trying to pray while nursing my girls to sleep or whatever, and letting my mind wander too much!) I also made a Lenten resolution to be a calmer mommy and not yell (my gentle discipline has been suffering this pregnancy! ) I wasn't perfect on either one, but I definitely improved over the course of Lent!

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#25 of 57 Old 04-20-2006, 10:48 AM - Thread Starter
 
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: Jenna!

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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#26 of 57 Old 04-20-2006, 10:54 AM
 
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Hi, Mamas. Can I join? I was raised Catholic; and now, I guess you'd say I'm a lapsed Catholic. I'm trying to find my way....

"We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams." 
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#27 of 57 Old 04-20-2006, 11:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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This might just be the perfect place for you, SharonAnne! Welcome!

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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#28 of 57 Old 04-20-2006, 03:02 PM
 
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Thanks Heidi !
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#29 of 57 Old 04-22-2006, 02:33 AM
 
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Wow, it's been a LOOONG week! Traveling three hours away was bad enough on dd schedule, but then taking her shopping all day saturday and easter vigil at 8pm was just too much. Good thing the church had a cry room with speakers!!! Poor baby, I felt so bad, and she was so tired she wouldn't even nurse! Next year we'll do mornings....
The good news? We discovered she LOVES choirs! Our church is so small here, 15 people max every sunday, but our old church which we went to vigil at has a great choir. When they sang "On the last day" she started SQUEALING and kicking and smiling at them. She was actually louder than the choir. It made everyone smile to see her so happy! So every time I sing our church songs she smiles and squeals. It was so cute.

In reference to our differences: I think that it is great to have a diverse group of woman practicing the same faith. You can never know enough about your faith in my opinion, and I am always open to different points of view. That's how I became Catholic in the first place!!
Well, g'night and HAPPY EARTH DAY!

Jill, mama to three fiery girlies and a sweet baby boy: Grace, 11.30.2005,  Ayla, 3.22.2008, Norah 9.5.09, Reed 8.19.11 & dfs Gage 2.29.12   angel1.gif x4
 

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#30 of 57 Old 04-22-2006, 10:22 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Shall we all re-introduce ourselves, since we are welcoming new mamas to the tribe?

I'm Heidi. I'm 40 & I have four children - J-Man (making his Confirmation next Sunday!) is 15, Miss BB is 12, Mr J (Asperger's) is 8, and Miss B (diabetes) is 5. "Mr H" (DH) was almost killed (and the two oldest kids injured) in a drunk-driving accident in December 2004. The mamas on MDC were a constant source of support and comfort to me as I struggled through the loooonnnnnng hospital stay and DH's recovery at home. It was a rough road to travel, but an awesome opportunity to strengthen my faith and witness to others!

We attend a small mission parish - it's a very tight and wonderful community and I love it. I'm the parish secretary, I'm a certified catechist and youth ministry leader, and I sing with the contemporary worship group (we trade off every other week with the regular organ choir - so musically, we have the best of both worlds in our little church!). Mr. H is the coordinator of altar servers, my two oldest are AS and Mr J served as an acolyte at the Easter Vigil this year.

I'm also a Eucharistic Outreach minister at the local hospital, and a women's chaplain at the county jail. (I discovered that I can play my entire Chaplet of Divine Mercy CD on the trip to the jail - if I start it right when I leave my house, it ends literally as I pull into the jail parking lot! So, it's the perfect time to pray the Chaplet. )

Next month, I'm attending some diocesan spring enrichment courses - I'll be taking courses in Sacraments and Social Justice that will up my youth ministry certification to the intermediate level, and for fun our DRE, her DH, and I are taking a course on the DaVinci Code.

J-Man attended a CLI (Christian Leadership Institute) retreat last summer - is you have teens I HIGHLY recommend this program!!!!! My son LOVED it, and my DD can't wait until she is old enough (15) to go. J-Man is thinking of going back this year, to work on the staff. It's a wonderful program.

I'd just like to reiterate my welcome to everyone, and Indie - it's nice to have you here!

Every baptized Christian is, or should be, someone with an actual (disturbing) experience, ... a close encounter, with God; someone who, as a result, becomes a disturbing presence to others. - Fr. Anthony J. Gittins, A Presence That Disturbs
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