Resolved to Build the Kingdom

At this time every year, I watch the “I Have a Dream” speech given by Martin Luther King at the Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 1963.  In fewer than 18 minutes Dr. King explains how the quest for justice and equality should always be sought, will always be worth pursuing and must never be gotten through violent means. Today when I watched it I realized how far we have come on some issues while how little has progressed on others. In this beautiful and fallen world, I am burdened by how grueling it is trying to create a just and peaceful society while witnessing how little energy it takes to tear down the good and spread fear, anger, and hate. Like Dr. King, I seek to establish Christ’s Kingdom of God here on Earth.  When I live in Christ’s life of abundance instead of my natural inclination towards fear and scarcity, this Eden is easy to pursue. I resolve that, with God’s help, I will daily renew my efforts to do my part to promote peace and justice.

by Andrew

He Had Resolution

Today we celebrate Martin Luther King Day. Our theme for reflections in January is “resolutions” as we undertake the seemingly timeless tradition of “New Year/New Beginnings.” Since the word “resolution” is so common to our vocabulary this time of year, I thought I’d take a deeper look into its definition. I pulled up my trusty Microsoft Thesaurus and in reading over the list of synonyms I realized that the Reverend Martin Luther King embodied many of attributes of what to “resolve” or to make a “resolution” is: determination, steadfastness, tenacity, perseverance, resolve, promise, pledge or oath. These are all very appropriate descriptions of a man who changed the face of a nation by becoming the leader that was so desperately needed for a struggling sector of our population. “Resolution” can also be a “solution” or an “answer” and in many ways, he was just that in the tumultuous era of the ‘60’s fight for Civil Rights.

by JAM

Growing Pains

For years I had avoided purchasing a “smartphone.”  Not because I am a luddite, but in hopes of preserving an old-fashioned kind of privacy; the solitude that comes from being occasionally unavailable. Finally, younger heads prevailed (my adult children) and I was dragged into the twenty-first century.  Now I can text and skype and email with abandon like a normal human being. Also, I can check the latest political news. This is a problem. I am a complete political junky. Yesterday morning I resolved I will spend less time checking on my favorite political nemesis and more time contemplating the astounding grace that is offered to us in every blade of grass, every shaft of moonlight, every fellow human that we encounter on our journey.  Yesterday afternoon several family members and I visited an ancient sycamore tree growing near Aliso Creek. A bronze placard states that the tree is 500 years old. Awe-inspiring! We came home to the latest news from Washington. My resolution will not be easy.

by Nathaniel

Resolved to Pray

I made only one New Year’s resolution this year, to explore different ways to pray. My writing will encompass that exploration this month. With that in mind, I want to share  an acronym for prayer given in a homily recently.

ATRIP:  stands for:

A = Adoration: Start your prayer with Love for the Lord. Praise Him.

T = Thanksgiving: Whatever, in the moment, you are thankful for, share it with God.

R = Repentance: Asking forgiveness for unloving acts or thoughts against yourself, God, or others.

I = Intercessory Prayer: Pray for our world and those you know who need God’s help.

P = Petition: Lift up your own concerns, dreams, and desires to the Lord,

What I like about this kind of structure is that it gives me a framework in which to focus my prayer. Praying this way gives voice to loving God, gratitude, forgiveness of my own failings, the needs of my friends, family and the world, as well as my own concerns. I feel more at peace, hopeful, and complete when I use ATRIP for my prayer format.

by Gracie

 

 

Not Putting Away Christmas

I walk around my home this week after Epiphany and say to myself “Well, time to put away Christmas.” I pause and think, no I am never putting away Christmas. Maybe physically, take down the lights, tuck away the Nativity set and pack up all the decorations. But the true meaning of Christmas, that God chose to send his son into my life and your life, will never be packed up, taken down or tucked away except into a special place in my heart. This New Year will bring us a challenge once again to bring the light and love of Christmas into each and every day.  Can we add this resolution, to be receptive to encounter everyday epiphanies and see the sacred in everything? That will truly be a gift for 2018!  “Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we experience life and the world.” John Milton

by Cathy

Yelling For Joy

When I was young, I use to go off into the woods near where I lived and yell to my delight just because I could. There were ninety acres of redwoods and not a soul around.  My yells would sometimes echo back to me so I felt I was not alone.  I sometimes thought it was God talking back to me. This is something I would never do now, given the proximity of neighbors and feeling somewhat reserved about a grateful yell.  There was something freeing about a good ol’ yell out loud.  I felt release, merriment, and gratefulness all at the same time; a sacred space, of sorts, to hear my own voice when I felt I did not have one.  I have discovered my voice, yet again in a different light, in my adult years and that same feeling of delight and gratefulness overcomes me.  I resolve this year to continue to yell out my joy and share it with others.

by Liz

 

RCIA Session on Sacraments of Initiation January 9, 2018

Happy New Year Everyone! We were together again on Tuesday, January 9th, our first session after the holidays, ready to dive into a few weeks talking about the sacraments. So, what is a sacrament anyway? That’s how we started out, with definitions and ways to ponder this very Catholic way of life. Then we discussed the first three – Baptism, Confirmation and a short orientation to the Eucharist. Fr. Brendan will be here next week to talk about the Eucharist for the whole evening. We ended up with our usual table talk and questions. It was great to be back together again!

Podcast of Donna’s Talk: https://seekingfaith.podbean.com/

Seeking Faith/RCIA Calendar

CALENDAR OF EVENTS 

We meet on Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m. in Knight Hall

 

January 9     The Sacraments

January 16    The Holy Eucharist

January 23     Sacraments of Healing

January 30      Sacrament of Holy Orders

February 6      Sacrament of Matrimony

February 13    Lent and Divine Election

February 20    Rite of Election with Sponsors at Basilica San Juan                                         Capistrano – Bishop presiding

February 27    The Creed

March 6          Commandments and Beatitudes

March 10 (Saturday)  RETREAT WITH SPONSORS -KNIGHT HALL                                                                                (MANDATORY)

March 13         Our Father Prayer

March 19         Penance Service (for Baptized Only)

March 20        Seder/Presentation of the Our Father @ 5:30 Mass

March 27         The Triduum

HOLY WEEK:

March 29   Holy Thursday: 8:15 a.m. Morning Prayer; 7:30 p .m. Mass

March 30    Good Friday: 8:15 a.m. Morning Prayer; 12:00 noon – Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion; 7:30 p.m. Lamentations

March 31   HOLY SATURDAY 8:15 a.m. Morning prayer and Preparation Rites followed by rehearsal for the Easter Vigil; (MANDATORY)

7:00 p.m. – Return to Knight Hall with Sponsors (MANDATORY)

8:00 p .m.  – Easter Vigil Begins!         

April 3 – Reflections on the Easter Vigil in Knight Hall

April 10 – Social Teachings of the Church

April 17 – Spirituality for the Long Haul

April 24 – Christian Witness/Stewardship

May 1 – Called and Gifted

May 8 – FINAL GATHERING – BBQ AND FAREWELLS; begins with mass at 5:30