Triduum

Tomorrow, March 25, we recognize the confluence of two major feasts of the Church: The Annunciation and Good Friday.  Christ in the womb of the Virgin Mary, taking on our flesh to save us from our sins and Christ dying in that same flesh on the Cross to accomplish His mission. This joining of dates will not happen again until the year 2157, and here is an amazing must-read about the significance.

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In the meantime it is Maundy Thursday, feast of the priesthood and the Eucharist.

Be Thou my vision, O Lord of my heart,
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art;
Thou my best thought by day and by night,
both waking and sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Be Thou my wisdom, and Thou my true word,
Thou ever with me, and I with thee Lord;
Thou my great Father, and I thy true son;
Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one.

Be thou my breastplate, my sword for the fight;
Thou my whole armor, and Thou my true might;
Be Thou my soul’s shelter, be Thou my strong tower:
O raise Thou me Heavenward, great Power of my power.

Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise:
Thou mine inheritance now and always;
Be Thou and Thou only the first in my heart;
Great Sovereign of Heaven, my treasure Thou art.

High King of heaven, Thy victory won
May I reach Heaven’s joys, O bright Heaven’s Sun;
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
Still be Thou my vision, O Ruler of all.

V is for Victory

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Image courtesy of Catholicvote.org

A victory in the battle over sin and death.

Today we remember the day He died for all of us.

The day He bore such suffering as none of us, even the bravest, could have stood.

I’m going to repeat a quote from C.S. Lewis that I like to recall on this day. Each of us has a choice when faced with the Man on the Cross. We can either stand with the skeptics, the tongue waggers, and ask why He doesn’t just save Himself–and us–and just get off the thing, or, we can stand in the humility of the centurion, and proclaim Him for Who He Is.

A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell.

You must make your choice.

Either this man was, and is, the Son of God or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God.

But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.” –Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis

Holy Thursday

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Godhead here in hiding, whom I do adore,
Masked by these bare shadows, shape and nothing more,
See, Lord, at thy service low lies here a heart
Lost, all lost in wonder at the God thou art.

Seeing, touching, tasting are in thee deceived:
How says trusty hearing? that shall be believed;
What God’s Son has told me, take for truth I do;
Truth himself speaks truly or there’s nothing true.

On the cross thy godhead made no sign to men,
Here thy very manhood steals from human ken:
Both are my confession, both are my belief,
And I pray the prayer of the dying thief.

 

Yarn Along on Spy Wednesday

Back to the Follow-Your-Arrow Shawl. I stopped at row 12, Clue 4B, which fortunately was a purl row and should have launched me into the project smoothly had I not had to repair some unravelling damage thanks to my dear Sunshine, who had found my project bag again. Having recently begun to carry a purse again instead of just a pocketbook, I forget the irresistible attraction purses have to any kind of pilferer–preschoolers included. 😉 So much for reminding myself to lock my WIPs into the yarn cabinet.

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And my resolve to refrain from reading any new books in Lent flew out the window with the arrival of the first “new” Wodehouse since Christmas. It came earlier than I expected, and I was going to be a good girl and keep it for later, but I have my weaknesses and I admit I didn’t resist opening that first page… 😉

Other reading includes this absolutely excellent must-read post about “Destruction Proofing your Family” and this series.

Speaking of Lent, if you’re curious why I call today “Spy Wednesday,” it has to do with an old tradition that the Wednesday before Good Friday is the day Judas Iscariot made the fateful betrayal bargain, and then, as the Bible tells us, “And from that time he sought opportunity to betray him.” Hence, “Spy.”

In other news: This weather bulletin. Suffice to say my budding pots of blueberry bushes are in the garage for the nonce. And my lavender. C’mon weather–it’s APRIL IN THE SOUTH! My Southern born mother-in-law reminded me that in these parts it’s known as “Dogwood Winter.” There’s also the possibility of “Blackberry Winter” in a few weeks. I might not actually plant those bushes into the ground until, I don’t know….July?

* IMPACTS…AREA FRUIT TREES AND STRAWBERRIES ARE BLOOMING…MAKING
THEM SUSCEPTIBLE TO FREEZE AND FROST DAMAGE. ADDITIONAL EARLY
SPRING TIME VEGETABLE CROPS…SUCH AS ONIONS AND SPINACH ARE ALSO
VULNERABLE TO THESE SUBFREEZING CONDITIONS. AREA GROWERS WILL
NEED TO TAKE PRECAUTIONS TO PREVENT DAMAGE TO THEIR CROPS.

Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real–first week of March edition

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Pretty

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The icon wall in the foyer is ready for Lent! Princess, Rascal, and Dino made their annual Lenten countdown calendar yesterday. Only Princess remembered that the Lenten color is purple, it seems. But hey, I’m flexible with the kids’ art… though I did have to question Dino why he persisted in drawing “Pirate Penguins” in parts of his calendar. Pirate Penguins is a recurring art theme for him, and as it is mainly from his own imagination I’m not too sure about the details. Sigh, yes that is a pencil mark on the wall. Miss M is our new wall artist. She’s even more subtle than Sunshine, her predecessor. But never fear, this weekend I’m running around with the touch-up paint!

A week from tomorrow is Posey’s first birthday. Where did that year go? I told you all last year that when Posey arrived home, Miss M thought she was the neatest thing ever. A real live doll to play with! Over the months Posey became less of a live doll and more of an actual playmate, but has that changed Miss M’s affections?

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Nope.

(They don’t share a crib. Miss M climbed in after Posey woke up. And yes, I have to repaint the closet doors in my room….)

Happy

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Feeding the dinosaurs.

(Egad! That wall, too!)

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Rebuilding Bag End (with some modifications. One day we will retain all the pieces to a LEGO set. One. Day.)

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Trooper checking out the interior.

Funny

I knew we were in trouble when I heard, “Mom! Sunshine took the toilet lid off again!”

I just wasn’t expecting the duck.

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I think I prefer her playing in the sink. I don’t know what gave her this idea anyway.

Real

This week I cleaned up a pile of random stuff in my room that had been sitting there since before Christmas (sigh). At the bottom of the pile was a bunch of now defunct coupons to Bath & Body Works that I had meant to send to my sis-in-law in college in case she and her girlfriends could use them. I never shop at B&BW anymore unless it is for a Christmas gift for my youngest sis-in-law, so I knew I wouldn’t need them. One advertisement in the coupons made me feel a little, well, old.

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I looked at it and thought to myself, Huh…I don’t think I want to see midnight every night for forever. How wearisome, much less the dressing up every night to go out until midnight or later…. 😉 I guess “Forever Midnight” just sounds like Purgatory to someone who has been rejoicing at the chance to go to sleep at 11p. 😉

Who do you say He is?

Today’s Gospel reading at Mass was the story of the Transfiguration, that moment in Jesus’ ministry where he appears in his glory to three of his apostles along with Moses (symbolizing the Law), and Elijah (the Prophets). Jesus as Messiah has come to fulfill both the old Law and the words of the Prophets.

But the apostles don’t really get it right away. As the priest said in his homily, “Like many in society, they see Jesus still as Just a Really Great Guy. See, here’s Moses–he’s great. Elijah, he’s great. Jesus, he’s great just like them. So let’s build three booths to commemorate this meeting of great guys.”

And then the voice of God comes and reminds them about Whom they’re speaking.

This is my beloved Son.

Nowadays it is the fashion to see Jesus as Just a Real Great Guy. Like Buddha, Confucius, etc. They are all perceived as good teachers. But, as the priest reminds us, neither Buddha, Confucius, Mohammed, etc. ever said they were God. They might have said, “Hey, I’ve found this great way of life. Come follow me on it.”

Jesus alone said, “I AM the Way.”

So it isn’t enough to say that you think Jesus is Just a Real Great Guy. A brilliant teacher, a compassionate healer, a pacifist, a theologian. He claimed to be the Son of God. You have to either believe this, or accept the alternative (it isn’t pretty). And if you believe it, how deeply does that reach into your life right now? How does it affect your choices today, asked the priest.

The priest then practically quoted C.S. Lewis in his homily today, and as Lewis said it much better than I can, so I’m going to end this with a quote I posted last Good Friday.

A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell.

You must make your choice.

Either this man was, and is, the Son of God or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God.

But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.” –Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis

Lenten flowers

My Valentine’s roses having expired, I realized how much I miss the nice floral touch in our home.  I debated with myself as I did the week’s shopping last night, trying to decide whether a bouquet would be in keeping with the austere season we’re currently in.  Then, at our neo-hippie organic health food store, I saw a beautiful and affordable arrangement.  Best of all, it was purple.  Purple–a Lent color!  Huzzah!  I could be justified in this purchase. 😉

I noticed something funny about it when I got it to the van and began to drive home.  It only became more pronounced with the passage of time, and by the time Haus Meister put it in a vase for me, it was unmistakable.

My Lenten flowers smell like celery.

Now that’s penitential. 😉