Threshold

Tonight is the night we pass through a portal:

A moment upon which every age has lingered,

A threshold which no one has yet crossed.

We are

Living flames issuing from the Cave of Bethlehem,

Glinting across a dark, dark world;

Breathing the prophecy of a new Dawn.

Light enough to guide wandering feet to the Child;

Warm enough to melt frozen souls.

That the trickle of fresh water

May quench the thirst of Jesse’s root,

Springing anew from once weary earth,

Soon stained by the wounds of redemption,

Yet ever untouched by the frost of waiting.

Such a threshold in which the Fire of Love hovers,

This threshold upon which we stand.

 

May you have a blessed Christmas season and a happy New Year!

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Advent Mysteries

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My airplane touched down in Milwaukee for Christmas break during a gorgeous and dangerous snowstorm. I spent the last twenty minutes of the flight staring breathlessly out the window as crystals of snow streaked off the plane wings and glittered in the white lights. I was praying the Rosary, but every so often the wintery sight distracted me. For some reason the snowflakes stretching in icy veins off from the wings reminded me of Hans Christian Anderson’s tale of the Snow Queen. Then inexplicably wandering as minds often do, a new thought popped into my head: Advent is such a strange time for college students. Continue reading “Advent Mysteries”

Blessed Darkness

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“If it weren’t for the darkness, we wouldn’t see the stars.”

This is one of a collection of random quotes I sticky-noted to my work computer. This past week, it suddenly dawned on me while wrestling with wanting to know everything (meaning particularly The Future, particularly my control over The Future) that maybe that very wanting is why I have to be kept in the dark. Maybe it is so that I learn I don’t need to know everything, and yet it still works out.

Perhaps also though the darkness is a gift. Continue reading “Blessed Darkness”

What is Womanhood?

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A couple weeks ago in group discussion, a bunch of us girls broached the question: “How do you describe authentic womanhood to someone in a way that doesn’t use religion as the context?”

It’s a valid question for a posse of young adults in a culture where the average girl is seeking the truth but is not open yet to hearing it in terms of “God-creating-it-that-way” or “this-part-of-the-Faith-shows-us-that.” Continue reading “What is Womanhood?”

The Mark of John Paul II

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New Joshua stood in the gates of Hell and led the people on,
Crying, “Open wide the doors to Christ. Be not afraid.” We rose.
He fought. He was born again. The Youth sprang up and fell for Christ.
And still we rise,
Horizon’s blazing stars
Scattering sparks and never burning out
As yet we soar up,
Up into the sky like fountains of flame
And as the gleaming embers penetrate the earth
Where each white-heat touches, a new torch fires up
And the never-ending, dying, immortal triumph marches on
Like the martyrs, living embers, ‘mid this century
When the Church shall rise again.
Rising like the sun of a new dawn,
Roaring like a Lion that once suffered as a Lamb,
Waking all the children sleeping weak within her gates.
For never shall the silence of the holy dead be lost
As the thundering battle cry
of Ver Sacrum
Living echoes on:
Long live Christ the King!

 

(Photo credit: Joshua D. Reznicek)

Prayer Through Action

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Every college student knows life can feel like a mad dash through a fountain of Post-It notes, clothing pieces, event reminders, alarms, and books. Your highschool friend texts you, “How’s life?” Family asks during a weekend Skype, “So what’s this week going to be like?” A roommate questions when you’re finally both in the bedroom at the same moment, “How’s it going today?” There’s usually one answer: “I’m doing pretty well. 😀 It’s crazy as usual.”

Under such circumstances then, how can we be expected to pray without ceasing (cf. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)? Or as St. Frances Xavier Cabrini said: “We must pray without tiring, for the salvation of mankind does not depend on material success…but on Jesus alone.” I have been tempted to ask with a smidge of astonishment in my voice, “How does that work?”

Continue reading “Prayer Through Action”