Tag Archives: Lent

Wednesday:) What’s Cookin’ Miss Toni?

27 Feb

“Roses do not bloom hurriedly; for beauty, like any masterpiece, takes time to blossom.”

― Matshona Dhliwayo


Today, being Ash Wednesday and the first day of Lent, I had many plans for the day. Just like New Year’s resolutions, Catholics usually make resolutions during Lent to give up something important, fast, abstain, make sacrifices, or add generosity of time or alms.

Ash Wednesday derives its name from the placing of repentance ashes on the foreheads of participants to either the words “Repent, and believe in the Gospel” or the dictum “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”

When I arrived at church at noon for ashes, I was surprised that the parking lot was packed. I thought that in the middle of the day, everyone would be at work or school. I brought my heavy craft bag with me because the Women’s Craft Ministry meets next door in the cafeteria at 12:30. It would be a busy day.

No, the Pope wasn’t at St. Gabriel’s to dispense ashes, but his cardboard double was in the craft closet taking a rest. Of course, I needed a selfie.

After working on some crafts with the ladies, I stopped in the sanctuary to light a candle and place a donation in the poor box. Then, I ran some errands, stopped for gas and went home to take a nap. I was up till almost 3am last night, working on the first coat of my glass painting for Empty Bowls, and a dozen wine glasses, so I was tired. Also, catching up on a few hours of sleep would pass the time on a day of fasting. Just water for me today. I could have slept all day, but I napped about three hours and went upstairs to paint.

Well, I finished the second coat of paint on both yellow rose bowls, and all the glasses. The second coat is pretty tricky because I had to make sure each brush stroke landed exactly on each previously painted petal and leaf. Tricky.

They turned out pretty darn good, if I don’t say so myself. So, that’s what’s been cookin’. I just need to bake them in the oven.

Everything’s coming up roses today. I hope you’re having a good day too.

Sunday Sermon: Sharing and Caring…Right Place…Right Time

22 Feb

“I don’t want to live in the kind of world where we don’t look out for each other. Not just the people that are close to us, but anybody who needs a helping hand. I cant change the way anybody else thinks, or what they choose to do, but I can do my bit.”
― Charles de Lint
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”
Matthew 25
Today is the first Sunday in Lent. From as far back as I can remember, Lent meant a time of fasting, reflection, renewal and giving up something. But, for the past few years, I’ve decided NOT to give up something, but rather, try and Give more of myself and my time.

Here’s one of my sharing and caring moments. It is one of those “in the right place at the right time” kinda stories.

Friday afternoon, I was going to stop and visit my friend Lynne who was working on a big sewing project with Jill. I thought, “Oh man, I keep forgetting to stop at St. Gabriel’s to pick up that form to send to Joe’s parish priest in Chicago. I’ll just pop in the office. They’re open till 4.” Half way there I thought, “Oh forget it. I’ll just go Monday.” But, I kept driving. I’d been procrastinating long enough.

I pulled into the parking lot and parked behind a small U-Haul truck. There were several cars, so I figured someone would be there. When I walked inside, there was a young couple roaming around. By young, I mean, barely old enough to vote young. They were holding hands, and the girl looked about seven or eight months pregnant. They asked me if I knew where the office was. I wasn’t sure myself, so I said, “Well, let’s walk around and take a look.”

When we got to the parish office door, it was dark and locked up. A small sign read, Friday 9 till noon. Oops! It was after 3 pm. The website said till 4, so I figured I’d just come back Monday. I asked them what they were looking for, and just assumed that they wanted to get married or wanted to talk to a priest.

Well, the poor kids said that they were on their way to Oklahoma and they ran out of money. They needed gas and were hoping someone at the church could help them out. They said they saw some cars across the lot at the recreation building, so they walked over. Of course, it’s natural to think that maybe they were just scamming, but then again, what if they were truly desperate.

While I watched them walk out the door, hand in hand, I reached into my purse to see how much cash I had. I found a five and three singles. Well. that isn’t going to help much. Then, I remembered the emergency $20 that I keep in the little side zippered pocket. Ah, now here’s an emergency if I ever saw one.

I walked across the lot and found them talking to one of the Knights of Columbus volunteers who was setting up for the Friday fish fry. Basically, he told the couple that the office was closed and, “Sorry, I can’t help you. They’ll be back Monday.” I walked over, handed the young man the folded up cash, and said, “This might not get you very far, but I hope it helps.” They both smiled and said “Thanks,”

Walking back to my car, I thought…”Whatever you do for the least of my brothers…” And I was right when I had guessed that the U-Haul truck was theirs. Poor kids. They followed right behind me and thanked me again. I watched as the young man helped the soon-to-be mom into her seat in the truck and closed the door behind her.

I know it sounds corny, but I felt like I was in the right place at the right time for a reason. What if I was a few minutes earlier or later, or maybe decided not to go after all? Hmmm? Makes you think?

“I don’t want to live in the kind of world where we don’t look out for each other. Not just the people that are close to us, but anybody who needs a helping hand. I cant change the way anybody else thinks, or what they choose to do, but I can do my bit.”
― Charles de Lint