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Here are this week’s must-reads:
+ Boasting in our weakness: I know it can be hard at times to understand Paul when he says, “If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness,” (2 Corinthians 11:30) and furthermore, “I am *content* with weakness… for when I am weak, then I am strong.” But I’d love to share with you a perspective where this really plays out in our lives in a way that you might “get” — it’s something I see and hear often.
It’s when you see a husband or wife speaking about their spouse — like, around an anniversary — or especially around a difficult season they’re enduring. It’s when one says, “I couldn’t do this without him.” “He’s carried us through.” “I’ve been struggling and he’s been picking up the groceries and making dinner.” “I keep forgetting my keys and he keeps finding them.” “This has been so challenging but his love and our marriage has only grown through this.” This is what it is to boast of our weaknesses — in a manner that sheds light on where that strength comes from and how it prevails despite our weaknesses & imperfections.
When we can humbly admit how we struggle, and see how we’re still carried through it, it’s a beautiful testimony of love and faith — and the fidelity of God. And you don’t have to be married to get this — this also plays out in family life, in friendships. And I think it’s just so beautiful. So keep on sharing those things about your husband or your family or your friends — how they show up and carry you through. ❤️
+ How to pray like Jesus in the Garden
+ “Too often, we want to experience resurrection before our time in the tomb. The tomb is where we heal! When the storms of life trigger memories you would rather not revisit, invite Our Lady to intercede for you. She not only relates to your sorrow, but she has experienced even greater sorrows watching her children suffer and grieve. But remember, according to Tradition, she embraced her Son’s resurrected, glorified body, and one day God willing, she will hold ours as well.” — Tricia Tembruell
+ “I can’t imagine’ is perhaps my least favorite phrase in the English language. As bereaved parents, we heard this all the time. What people meant was “I can only imagine” or “I don’t want to imagine.” But every time we declare another’s life or position unimaginable, we distance ourselves from them. Rather than honoring their pain or protecting ourselves, we become more isolated and less empathetic. Because our ability to imagine makes us human… Where there is compassion, there is always God. “So try it with today’s news. Try it with tomorrow’s conversations. With your spouse or kids, with your neighbor or co-worker, with that maddening relative on Facebook. Yes, you can imagine. Remember the reason we want children to have lively imaginations and compassionate hearts. Both make us more human.” – Laura, Mothering Spirit
+ A Catholic Retreat for Grieving Mothers
+ “The place God calls you to is the place where deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”
+ “The USCCB just voted to advance the cause for canonization of Leonard LaRue He has one of the most amazing stories you’ve probably never heard. Leonard LaRue & Room at the Inn: “The journey became known as “The Ship of Miracles.” It is the largest humanitarian operation by a single ship in the history of the world. The United States government declared it “the greatest rescue in the history of mankind.”
+ “Trusting God (doesn’t) mean I think He‘ll protect me from suffering, failing, or having my heart ripped in two. I don’t. I actually think the opposite. I trust I will suffer. I trust I will fail. I trust my heart will be ripped in two. “In this world, you will know trouble.” That’s what Jesus said. I’m pretty sure I’m not the exception.
“But I’m also sure He meant what He said next. “Be of good cheer, for I have overcome the world. That’s what I trust. I trust in His mercy, kindness, wisdom, and love. I trust that this suffering is not the end of my story. I trust that my life is not the sum of its sorrows. I trust that whatever pain, loss, or failure I experience, somehow, in Jesus’ hands, will be transformed: it will become part of the story of how He made us forever His own. I also trust that God will never abandon me when pain comes. I trust that in my moments of crucifixion, Jesus will hang on the cross with me, suffer with me, and give me the strength to endure...” — Emily Stimpson Chapman
+ Chiara Corbella Petrillo. She teaches me to love in my suffering, to live in Love and joy, and to keep an eternal perspective. ❤️ From an article about her: “Chiara and Enrico’s remarkable story is “a story of salvation in which God shows himself as a faithful God: they trust in Him and are not disappointed,” they stated.
“However, they were quick to note that Chiara was not “an extraordinary young woman, in a way that makes her different from us.” Rather, she struggled with many human fears and anxieties, especially with thoughts of pain, vomiting, and purgatory.
***”She had the same questions that we have, the same objections and struggles, the same fears,” Troisi and Paccini noted, saying what made her different was her “capacity to cast everything on the Father, to welcome the grace needed for whatever step she had to make.” (Catholic news agency)
+ “Prayer is the best armor we have, it is the key which opens the heart of God.” — Padre Pio
+ Prayerfully Navigating Chronic Illness
+ Lastly, here’s what’s featured in this week’s Catholic Wife, Catholic Life Newsletter. I share these every Monday and they always include: two gluten-free recipes, a reflection & prayer based on Sunday’s Mass readings, and links to budget-friendly fashion & home decor.