Go Jimmy Graham!

Jimmy Graham | New Orleans Saints

Jimmy Graham | New Orleans Saints (Photo credit: Football Schedule)

Since it is Halloween and I am thinking about my two grandkids, I decided to share a cute story concerning my four-year-old grandson.  I will call him Luke.

My daughter and her children live about an hour away from New Orleans.  The New Orleans Saints are very big in their home town and we are all Saints fans.

Earlier this year, my daughter’s husband adopted a dog from a local shelter.  The shelter had named the dog “Jimmy Graham” after the Saints’ tight end.  Jimmy was a beautiful dog; however he was also very busy and was routinely eating up furniture, doors, and walls…  My daughter worked with him as best she could, but in the end the family had to say good-bye to Jimmy Graham when they found him a new family with lots of yard for him to play in and be mischievous.  Luke took the good-bye the hardest.  He made friends quickly with Jimmy Graham and being a four-year-old boy, was likewise mischievous.  They were in a way “kindred spirits”.

Along comes football season.  My daughter and family were watching the New Orleans Saints in their living room.  The kids were playing nearby and could hear the cheers and jeers depending on how the game was going.  It was not long that Jimmy Graham, the Saints football player, caught a pass and was headed for the goal line.  My daughter and husband were yelling, “Go Jimmy Graham!”.  This immediately caught the ear of Luke, who jumped up in front of the TV and yelled out in amazement, “My DOG turned into a MAN?”.  This was followed by, “…AND HE’S A FOOTBALL PLAYER?… GO JIMMY GRAHAM, IT’S ME LUKE!  I’M SO PROUD OF YOU!”.

Luke’s love for his dog was so great, that he did not mind the separation if it meant that Jimmy Graham could become a man!

I just love kids.  They see the world through eyes that are so innocent and so loving. Pure Love. Love like God intended it to be.

I will be watching the Saints this weekend.  I will be rooting for Jimmy Graham…  but, it is Luke who makes Grams proud!

C’est Bon,



The Fruit of Silence…

Autumn Fruit (12/365)

Autumn Fruit (12/365) (Photo credit: nevynxxx)

Mother Angelica once said, “The fruit of SILENCE is PRAYER. The fruit of prayer is FAITH. The fruit of faith is LOVE. The fruit of love is SERVICE.”

It took me many, many years to understand that I needed to LISTEN and the Lord will speak to my heart.  Our Lord is so patient and so kind – well, that is the first two words that define LOVE in the Bible!  He worked on me and worked on me until I finally got it!  By making Christ the center of my life and my family, and by spending time each day in prayer and silence, God has helped me to understand His will for me.  I have been able to “connect the dots.”  He has blessed me with signs, people, and places that have made a difference in my life.  He is constantly “speaking” to me.  I am constantly listening.

I have a very dear friend in Shreveport, Louisiana, Jo, that God has placed in my life.  Through this friend, I have come to know her daughter, Vicki.  To show you how God allows us to “connect the dots,”  recently my granddaughter was diagnosed with Alopecia.  At six-years-old, she began to lose her lovely, long hair.  (Very traumatic for a first grader).  We began to pray for her, but also to plan on how to handle a worse case scenario.  It was decided that due to her age, she would not take steroids; but, if she did lose her hair; a wig would help her feel comfortable until hopefully the hair grew back.

I then gave a property manager workshop in Montgomery, Alabama.  My friend Jo was at the workshop and she told me about an organization her daughter Vicki started in northern Louisiana called “Wiggin’ Out” (check them out on facebook).   The organization provides wigs to local cancer patients as well as some other types of support.

On the ride home to Louisiana, I began thinking about Wiggin’ Out and the need for such an organization for Alopecia patients as well.  I phoned my friend Jo and explained that I wanted to discuss Wiggin’ Out with her daughter.

As luck (or God) would have it, Jo’s daughter, Vickie, had just visited a wig shop and had a discussion with its owner regarding the percentage of customers who were cancer patients.  The wig shop owner stated that she had a small number of customers who were cancer patients; however, many more customers who are dealing with Alopecia!  The dots started connecting..

I met with Vicki. She is a remarkable person.  She told me that God placed the words “Wiggin’ Out” on her heart.  She had no idea how to start up the organization or where to turn.  She put her trust in the Lord and He has been leading the way!

I am now working with Vicki on getting Wiggin’ Out spread throughout southern Louisiana and hopefully will be able to start up a Wiggin’ Out Too for Alopecia patients!  Our God is so Awesome!  The fruits of the Spirit are everywhere!

Vicki is following in the footsteps of great women such as Mother Angelica and Rose Hawthorne.  Rose was the sister of Nathaniel Hawthorne (author of The Scarlet Letter).  Rose became a Catholic and after a failed marriage, her heart turned with compassion toward people with terminal cancer who had no one to take care of them.  She brought them into her home and dressed their wounds.  Another woman joined her in this work of mercy.  Together they became Dominican Third Order religious and started a new religious order.  Over a hundred years later, “Hawthorne Dominican Sisters” are still caring for the terminally ill and forgotten.

Faith has turned into Love, which has turned into Service.  Please pray for Vicki and her call to serve!

C’est Bon,



I’m a Soul Woman

An Angel Frees the Souls of Purgatory

An Angel Frees the Souls of Purgatory (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I was born on All Souls’ Day, (November 2nd).  This has led to a curiosity with regard to souls and purgatory.

My parents are in their seventies.  I have very early memories of seeing my parents cleaning and painting tombs of loved ones in preparation of All Souls’ Day.  To this day, even though my parents are no longer young and agile, they continue their loving care of the graves of departed family members.  Praying and attending mass for deceased family members was the normal custom of my family and my local community.

As a child, the thought of purgatory was scary.  I knew witches, goblins, and vampires were creations of imagination; however, purgatory was a real and scary place.  A place people went to suffer for sins committed.  A place for “purging”.

As an adult, purgatory still seemed scary.  Jesus seems so loving and forgiving in the Good Book; it did not seem possible that purgatory was part of His plan.

Then I read Sister Faustina’s Diary: Divine Mercy in My Soul.  Jesus told Sister Faustina, “You are the secretary of My mercy; I have chosen you for that office in this and the next life.”  The Diary was kept the last four years of her life.  She died in 1938 after filling several notebooks of her divine revelations, visits from poor souls in purgatory, and the gift of the Divine Mercy Chaplet which was dictated by Our Lord Jesus Christ.  It was through this Diary that I finally understood the meaning of Redemptive Suffering and the depth of Our Lord’s Mercy.

Recently I have read another great book.  “Get Us Out of Here“, by NIcky Eltz is a captivating interview with Maria Simma, an Austrian mystic.  Ms. Simma, who passed away in 2004, was visited most of her life by holy souls from purgatory.  She gives a personal account of details the souls have provided her regarding church traditions, child rearing, guardian angels,….I could not put the book down!  Very fascinating to me was the fact that the souls begged for prayers, masses, and for generations to care for their tombs of beloved family members.

I am no longer scared of purgatory.  I want to enter God’s Kingdom clean and worthy.  I think of it as entering a very clean, immaculate house.  If I have trampled in the mud, I will want to hose off my shoes and wipe them clean.  It is a sign of respect for the house I am entering.

And besides, if I end up in purgatory, the next stop is Heaven!

In the meantime, I have scheduled masses for my loved ones who have passed away.  I pray for the souls in purgatory every day.  And I plan on taking over mom and dad’s tomb duties this year.  It is time for the next generation to remind the young ones never to forget those who have passed on – they may need our prayers!

1 John 2:16-17

“If you see your brother commit a sin that does not lead to death, you should pray to God, who will give him life.  This applies to those whose sins do not lead to death.  But there is sin which leads to death, and I do not say that you should pray to God about that.”


C’est Bon






You don’t know me, but I’m your brother

Pope Francis Portrait Painting

Pope Francis Portrait Painting (Photo credit: faithmouse)

We have a local Radio Maria radio station.  No, I did not hear the Doobie Brothers on this station; but I did hear a talk show host discuss loving our enemies.  Her presentation was extremely simple and made all the sense in the world.  If one believes that God is the Father of each and every person and loves each and every person the same, then we are all “spiritual brothers” with one heavenly Father.

The host went on to explain how much rage and anger is brought on by someone hurting us or hurting a family member.  The human nature in us demands revenge, retaliation, justice.  If someone killed my sister for example, I would want to see that person suffer.  What if my sister was the cause of someone’s suffering?  I would feel really bad about what was done, but I am sure I would still love my sister and would want to see her make amends and overcome her transgressions.  I now understand that this should be my feelings towards all of God’s children; all of my brothers. To deny any person the same compassion I would have for an immediate family member, is to deny God as the one Father of all people.

There has been much controversy lately over interviews conducted with Pope Francis.  I have read the entire interviews and not just the selected “buzz words” the media have put out there.  This is the message of Pope Francis.  His message as Christ’s vicar on earth is the message of Christ, “Love one another”.  So simple. So hard.

Just imagine if all people suddenly found out they were closely related.  What would happen?  Don’t you think we would treat each other differently?

“Take this message to my brother, you will find him everywhere. 

Wherever people live together, tied in poverty’s despair.”

Ephesians 5: Since you are God’s dear children, you must try to be like Him.  Your life must be controlled by LOVE

C’est Bon



sweet Guest of my soul

The Holy Spirit depicted as a dove, surrounded...

The Holy Spirit depicted as a dove, surrounded by angels, by Giaquinto, 1750s. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Once a week I attend a study group which focuses on the “Catechism of the Catholic Church”.  This past week, we covered Chapter 3: “I believe in the Holy Spirit”.  It really got me thinking….

What do I know of the Holy Spirit?  Well, I know that I received the Holy Spirit at baptism and again at confirmation.  I know that the Holy Spirit gives all of us many gifts; the most important is that the Spirit reveals Jesus and the faith to us.  I know that the Holy Spirit is the Third Person of the Holy Trinity.  I know that it was through the power of the Holy Spirit that Mary conceived the Son of God and also that this same Son was raised from the dead.  The Holy Spirit has been at work with God the Father and God the Son throughout all time in a divine plan for our salvation.

I can picture God the Father.  I see an old, fatherly Man with a long white beard.  I have no trouble thinking of God as my Father.  I love Him like my own earthly father.

I can picture God the Son.  I see Jesus.  I can picture Him at all stages of His earthly life; from a tiny baby in a manger to the Risen and Glorified Jesus Christ.  I have no trouble thinking of Jesus as my Friend, my Redeemer. I love Him and daily thank Him for his sacrifice.

But, when trying to picture God, the Holy Spirit, I see a Dove.  The Dove is silent and usually descending from above.  This impersonal picture made me feel guilty.  I want to have a devotion to all three persons of the Trinity; however, I did not know how to picture this Spirit in my mind as a God that has a relationship with me and a God that I could speak with.  I pray the “Come Holy Spirit” prayer every day, yet I wanted a connection, the same connection I felt with the Father and the Son.

I went to bed the night of my study group feeling guilty and troubled, thinking maybe I was letting the Holy Spirit down.  The Holy Spirit was such an important force in my life – I needed to know that I could be devoted properly to this “Paraclete” or “Consoler”.

In the middle of the night I awoke.  Laying in my bed my mind was still pondering thoughts of the Holy Spirit.  It was then that the Spirit spoke to my heart.  I suddenly saw the Spirit as a Dove; not descending from above, but a Dove that was nestled in my heart.  A Dove that was silent; yet spoke to my heart.  A Dove that dwells within me, guiding me, teaching me, giving me counsel and comfort.  Suddenly, everything seemed clear.  What a gift the Spirit bestowed on me!  I am so grateful and humbled.  It is true that we only have to pray to the Holy Spirit for guidance – He will answer and guide.

Jesus is the Word of God. The Spirit is the Breath. We are the adopted children of God the Father, in the Mystical Body of His Son, Jesus Christ; the Spirit dwells within each of us and reveals the fullness of all truth.

John 3:5  “I am telling you the truth replied Jesus, that no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit.  A person is born physically of human parents, but is born spiritually of the Spirit.”

O Holy Spirit, sweet Guest of my soul, abide in me and grant that I may ever abide in Thee. Amen.

Pray to the Holy Spirit every day!

C’est Bon!