Does your diocese or parish offer a healing Mass for those who have suffered perinatal loss (miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, stillbirth, and infant death)? This week on Catholic Women Now, Julie and I welcome my husband Joel Schmidt who has been working hard with Adam Storey, director of our diocesan Marriage and Family Life Office, to initiate such a Mass. Julie and I also welcome Maria Campbell, parishioner at All Saints Catholic Church, Des Moines, who discusses her experiences with pregnancy and infant loss.
When we remember together, it takes on a different character. Rather than simply recalling the past, this communal remembrance brings the sacrifice of those who have given their lives for our freedom into the present day. Further, it somehow becomes eternally present whenever we gather to remember.
Does any of this sound familiar? Substitute Jesus for the person(s) you remember today, and this is the essence of the sacred Eucharist.
Since “retiring” from the workforce in order to care for my young children, I’ve spent a great deal of time pondering spiritual friendships. If I had to pick one word to describe that first year of transition between being a working out-of-the-home mom to an at-home mom, the word is loneliness. My heart longed for a spiritual friend. What do we need to do to gain just one spiritual friend? Three biggies…
One might think that when a man is called to deacon formation, the journey leads him and his family closer to Jesus and His Church. True enough. However, the demands of this journey have provided a plethora of opportunities for our family to get really good (read, bad) at being busy. Many of the spiritually strengthening devotional practices that were once a regular part of my life have given way to the all-consuming formation process. I’m running around performing acts of service like Martha yet still feeling hungry for something deeper.
It all came to a head one recent evening while eating dinner with my family — a fist pounding on the table and tears streaming down my cheeks kind of encounter. At that point, Joel insisted it was time to walk away from the diaconate, if only to get me OFF. THE. LEDGE!
Women deacons. It’s in the news again thanks to comments a German Bishop recently made about the potential of a new “diaconal” role for women in the Church. Given this topic is one that’s generating conversation and Joel is currently in deacon formation, we felt called weigh in on the issue over at Catholic Stand.
Hot diggity! I’m on a “Pinisher” role lately. I recently spotted a few ideas on Pinterest for how to assemble a family May altar in your home. Given the month of May is dedicated to Mary, I set out to create an altar to honor Mary. Now the next logical step is to actually gather the family around the altar and pray a Hail Mary or two. So here are some tips for praying the Rosary with kids.
On May 1 our parish began a novena for those wishing to conceive. We will pray this for first nine days not only in May, but for the first nine days per month for the extended future. We are praying the Novena to St. Gerard, the patron of motherhood. If you have a heart for this issue, please join in our heavenly petition. Or perhaps you know one who might find consolation in this prayer? If so, please consider passing this along.