theROCK

Everyday Discipleship

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While I am now an empty nester, I remember very clearly when my children were in grade school. I was teaching fourth grade and working really hard at being a "good mom". I had great role models in my mother and my grandmother, for what it looks like to blend work and home. While both these things were my vocation, I was always wanting to do more in the church. I wanted to lector, be a Eucharistic minister, serve the poor in the various meal programs, and the list goes on and on. There was only so much of me to go around! My children needed me first, the children I served needed me second, and then I had to choose.

In sharing my frustration with one of my co-workers a long time ago, he wisely reminded me that I was being a disciple in raising my family. I was being a disciple by teaching my children, and the children I taught, to know, love, and serve Jesus. I was being a disciple by doing what I could with the time I had. He reminded me that when my life changed, so would how I served God's people.

Being a disciple also meant that I needed to take time to feed my soul - a person cannot give what they do not have. I now look at it as I need to be Martha but also Mary.

Our catechism says that as followers of Jesus, our goal is to know, love, and serve Him. How are you doing that? What is an obstacle you face? What is St. Dominic doing to help you? What would you need from your Church to assist you, if anything? I look forward to learning.

Habits

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Habits. We all have them. Some are good for us and some are not so good for us. One habit that I have is to start my day with three things.

The first is my daily prayer. I have a routine to my prayer that is rooted in a prayer to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Immaculate Heart of Mary. This prayer quickly transitions into the Act of Consecration to Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal. The third component is an informal prayer to our Lord to lift up my “big asks”.

The second part of my morning routine is to read the daily meditation from Thirsting For God: Daily Meditations of Mother Teresa edited by Angelo D. Scolozzi. I often dog-ear the pages of “the good ones”. It is fun to come upon these dog-eared pages a year later and wonder what inspired me to dog ear it.

The third component is to read my daily reflection and prayer from The Catholic Mom’s Desk Calendar by Lisa M. Hendey. This waits for me in the kitchen. I read it while I am waiting for my daily dose of coffee to finish brewing.

If I don’t accomplish these three things before leaving the house, I feel like I am missing something. It is in sharing this habit of mine, that I share the meditation from St. Teresa, as noted on October 22, which inspired my writing today. “To almighty God, the smallest action given to him is great. But for us, we always measure how much we did, for how long. For God, there is no time. What should be important to us is how much love we put into the giving.” All in all this habit of mine to start the day takes all of 10 minutes,
sometimes 15 if something is weighing on me. It is amazing how small of a thing can have such an impact on my relationship with God and others. This habit brings me to peace. It brings me to hope. It brings me to a better version of myself.

What habits do you have? Are you looking to start a new one? I am happy to share my resources any time. I’d love to hear about some of yours.

Posted by Jill Fischer with 1 Comments

Mother of All People

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I remember as a child sitting in church watching people pray the Rosary and being so happy at my First Communion to receive my own beautiful set of prayer beads. I recall the beautiful May Crownings, as well as one of my teachers asking us to create a shrine to Mary in our homes. That idea did not go over too well, having shared a room with my two sisters. Yet, the statues and the pictures of Mary were very formative in my life. My first visit to the Schoenstatt Shrine in Milwaukee, was unforgettable. Mary has a very important part in the life of our Lord. She was the first Tabernacle, carrying our Lord within her. She accompanied her Son throughout his life until his death on the Cross. Jesus declares that Mary became the mother of all people. Her mission is to lead us closer to her son, Jesus. In 2019, we celebrate the 160th anniversary of the apparition to Adele Brise in Champion, WI at Our Lady of Good Help. This is the only approved apparition of Mary in the United States. Yes, my friends, this important place of grace is only two hours from Brookfield.

I recently made a pilgrimage to Holy Hill, to the shrine of Mary, with a trusting heart in her powerful intercession. Both my brothers were diagnosed with cancer. I knelt in complete dependence and humility begging her help on their behalf. Several days later, we received the amazing news that treatment and surgery would remove all cancer cells. How relieved and grateful I was. Consider making a visit to one of her shrines or praying the Rosary. She is the woman, the mother of all people who pleads with her Son for all of us.

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