Catholic Soup is a food for thought blog based website designed to provide Catholic insight through personal experience.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Hike for Christ

For a while I've been wanting to do something different and head to Palo Duro Canyon to hike what's known as the Devil's Slide to pray a rosary at top.
I didn't know when I was gonna do it, I just knew in my head that I was gonna do it, somehow, sometime. Well today I had that chance. The chance to get away from what I had already fallen back into, sin. In our sin we are separated from Christ, an in our repentance we are joined with him. I think the great thing about this act of repenting is realizing our sin, and realizing the call from Christ to return. When we realize we sin its a good thing, that guilt is good, because it shows that our soul is alive. If we don't have guilt in our sin, then our souls are dead an need life. This action of going out and using everything that we are given to reach the top of the mountain, our bodies, our hearts, minds, and energy, in the same way is necessary for a repentance. In our weakness we fall, but its our guilt that gets us back up.
Cara, a friend of mine had drove down from Oklahoma to join me on this small breakaway, even my family! To go an hike down in Palo Duro Canyon is a great experience for me and I hope for her as well. When I climb I remember the words from Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati as he climbed, "The higher you go, the closer you are to Christ." I like to remember that a hike is a hike of repentance and a hike to Christ to who we are saved. Thanks for coming Cara.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

A Joyous Jewel

In a small town like mine, sometimes it can seem like it's so big, just cause you never see anybody. After high school, it's like all my friends from high school are like a valuable asset, or even like a precious jewel. Just like precious jewels and gems are hard to find, so too, are friends. It is rare that I get to see anybody from high school around anymore cause I'm pretty distant, and like I said, this small town ain't so small. But when I do, it's a great experience and in a way, soothing to realize that they are doing alright. I went to Wal Mart today, and found myself talking to a couple of my cousins who have grown so big, and look so different from when I last seen them. I guess sometimes we forget that a person grows up through a great thing we call time. I said hello to a couple of my classmates from high school, talked for a while, left and said hello to another. By the time I left, I grew a great happiness and peace, just by talking to a couple of people who I haven't seen in years. It was a great realization that came to me, I was at peace knowing that my old friends were doing fine, just to see them there was great. I think the Joy around that reflection comes from Christ, in realizing that sometimes people need a person there. Someone with higher spirits to get them through the drag of the day. A talk, a laugh, a wave or even a joke. I think as precious as a jewel is, the real preciousness is not the worth, or the characteristics but rather where and how they came to be. For us it's our background, being made by God, the one who gives us life. It's the relationship, how truly precious a relationship can bring; great joy. God gives us the chance everyday to catch how great of a blessing it is to be living, to have friends and to experience them once again. I thank God for my life, for the great adventure in seeing old faces with a new spirit.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

A Savior is Born.

Today as we remember a holiday that's been around for more than two thousand years, we can also remember that today is a day of Joy and happiness, of great trial that is overcome by adversity and peace. Mary and Joseph are called by God to bear a son and name him Jesus, while this is a great calling, Mary and Joseph are venerated because of their great obedience to God. God would enter into the world, as a man, today a Savior is born, the redeemer of the world would come and be immersed in our humanity to die for our sins and promote our invitation to eternal salvation.
Christmas is a sign of peace and joy that comes after any trial, we can be secured in our faith. For Mary and Joseph, the thought of having a baby under the Jewish law was frightening. Mary could be charged with adultery and stoned to death. While God blessed Mary with a humble heart, she became strong in her fears in order to carry Christ the King. The great triumpant over this common fear, is the birth of Jesus.
So for us, I think we can remember that even in our trials and stress we can learn to see Christ, the Savior who redeems us from sin and even from trial. He saves. While there is evil and trial in this world, there is also good that arises from that evil and trial. Thomas Aquinas says that God allows evil to occur in order to bring out a greater good.
For us during Christmas, we die from all of our fears and trials, and rise with Christ in his birth in a greater peace.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Dutchover Wedding

It all seemed to happen so fast. I can still remember the first day I meet the two love birds. Dutch and Karen were starting their junior and senior years there at Saint Gregory's. Dutch was starting his Senior year and Karen her junior year. It was really fun to get to know these two for the little time that we had together there at school. I learned a lot of things from the both of them, and I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one who learned to find another meaning of love just through the love that they shared for each other. This love that I wrote about before, was finally sealed, confirmed, wrapped and shared together.
I've always been the kind of person to be happy for my friends when I know their doing the right thing. I feel like I have known my buddy dutch for a really long time, almost like a lifetime friendship and its to the point where you start to be happy for him because you know he's happy. For Karen too, I have never seen a couple more in love in my life, and it's really cool to be a witness of that. These two are some of my bestest of friends and I would want them to be as happy as can be. I just want to congratulate them again, on sharing their love to world. Expressing it to people who might even feel like they can't love. I hope you guys live a beautiful life, forever with each other. Thanks for being my friends, I love y'all and congrats.

Karen, watch my boy.

And Dutch, be good man. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Jesus Comes Down

Wednesday here at the university marks the midway point of the week, so the monastery offers Student Mass for anyone in need of some typical "Jesus time" or just in need of time to get away from the normal student life hustle and bustle. Today it was different, it was a beautiful day from start to finish, fresh and murky in the morning, then warm and humid in the afternoon. Towards the evening, the rain clouds start to roll in, an by the time we knew it, it was raining an hour before our normal student mass. Then 20 minutes before it was thundering, and lightning literally every 20 seconds. So I get dressed and ran down to the Abbey Church. As we were having mass, I remember thinking of God and how he is so powerful and almighty. During the consecration, as the priest raised the host, a thunder in the distant struck, and then it moved to be this soft, gentle sound all the way until the host was lowered. As the priest did the same for the cup, it was again, this soft and gentle thunder that struck, the lights dimmed in the church and then lightning rumbled until the cup was lowered. As the priest bowed behind the alter, tears came from my eyes and I knew, that Christ who is so big, so strong, almighty, and powerful still yet makes himself lower than our own humanity to be consumed to us, whom he loves. It's a very Christological view, that God accepts and respects our humanity enough that he would come down for us, and take on this humanity. I was in mass, thinking of all of this. I was Eucharistic Minister for mass and I remember it being so silent, and so quiet that I heard no thunder or lightning for the entire communion. It was like Christ had made himself not like us, but lower than us to be consumed by us. It was the most amazing thing I have ever experienced in my life. It helped me realized that no matter how big and strong God is, he still has the power to make himself like us no matter what. He has done it before, he can do it again. I think we have this notion in our heads to be fearful of him. When we fear God it ain't a bad thing, when we hear in the bible for us to 'Fear the Lord' that means for us to be afraid of being separated from God. In that manifestation God comes down to us, to be united with us, and forever with us.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Your Love, Your Family

When you see somebody for so long, so many hours out of the day, you start to get use to it. It's like you start to expect that person to show up everyday wherever you are. Part of human nature is habit, so when the time comes to go and do your own thing, to try something new and break that original habit guess what? It's quite an adjustment you can imagine. I guess for a colleague it can be tough for some of us, we leave the people that we have basically grown up with our whole lives to try and be somebody and do something with the lives that they [Our Parents] have given us.
Two days ago, September 18 was my dad's birthday. I called him up and we talked, I told him happy birthday and that I loved him. He started asking me how I was doing, if I needed anything, to be responsible and that sort of thing. What stood out was his emphasis on love and prayer, he told me to pray for all those that I hurt or all those that hurt me and likewise love them. As we were talking, I tried to visualize him talking to me like if he was there in front of me, looking at me straight in the eyes like he always had done. Being away from home, It is a lot easier to listen and take to heart the words that he speaks. It's almost like you wish you had a tape of everything he tried telling you, so you can just pop it right in, push play, and just listen, listen for hours and soak it all in.. I always think of my family when I'm away from home, sometimes it can be a scary thought because anything can happen while your away, good things, bad things, horrible things and even the most amazing things. I hate to think of any of those bad things happen to any of us or of our family members but when I do, for some reason it is proof to me of what I am really called to do. Those thoughts fuel my passion for my vocation, it makes me strive to be above the average person. It's weird not seeing people around telling you what you should do or what you can't do. They have been with us all our lives and now it is different for us. The prize in this, is that we are called by God through all that we miss, to love them even more and respect them even more than what we normally have. It is an invitation if you think about it, to love our elders, our parents, our friends since it was them that really, truly loved us first.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

With Time, Comes Decisions

Well, I'm starting another long yet adventurous year here at St. Greg's. It's already my junior year and I feel like I don't really remember much of anything. The first year I was here I was so grateful and so excited that I enjoyed everything about this place. My second year I had a lot of fun, learned a lot of new things about communicating to different people and having the will to make new friends when you left the old ones from back home behind. Now it's...well...Now, and it feels like everything is moving too fast to even decide what I'm really suppose to do. I guess when times flies, you know your having fun. I always believed growing up that through time comes, you know, a lot other things. So here for my junior year at a Catholic school with the intention of graduating with a Theology degree gets me pretty excited but even like wandering about it too. But like I said, With time comes decisions, I like that one better. I have to say, I'm excited for the new year. We have a bunch of freshman coming in, new names I've never even heard of in my life, it'll be fun. My brother, Nick will be tagging along with me now here. It's great to have a little piece of home with you, while your away. So It'll be good, I'm looking forward to it.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Beautiful Colorado

It was great to get away from everything that consumes you for once. My family and went to Colorado for our vacation to stay with some family. It was great, We had a lot of fun, laughs and great food. I'm just going to go ahead and make Colorado my official favorite state. Even though I haven't see the others, so far this ones my favorite. Just for a couple reasons, it's always raining, it's beautiful, and God surrounds. Through the mountains, the blue skies, the landscaping, it's amazing to witness and be inside or in the midst of all of it. One of the days, we decided to take a hiking trip up a mountain. It took a couple of hours to get to the top, look around and come back down. But it was exhausting, and pretty tiring for us, especially the little ones. I tried to maintain myself and not lost my breathe or sit down. I wanted to get to the top of the mountain so I can see everything that is around the one that I was on. We took breaks, took pictures, and stood up on rock faces. Even though we were tired, we kept moving, and everytime we had the chance, we would climb up the nearest rock face look out and see a world that is vast, and full of unknown colors. It's beautiful to see and give thanks to God for creating the world he did for us. It's amazing and full of wonders that God wants to reveal to us every single day.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Like the Water Flows

For a long time, I felt like I was being held back. I was weighed down and tied up, tied up by what? It was my guilt, my sin, and my shame. I had gone to confession before but I felt like it wasn't enough. During my stay in Pecos, I remember sitting there in prayer for a really long time, I prayed long and hard that I be forgiven from all my faults, It was hard because I had to look deep inside of myself, and finally look at what it was that was keeping me from being a fully, functioning Christian. When I think about it now, It's like I really doubted the Mercy that God offers me, I never knew what it meant to receive the sacrament of reconciliation. All I did was stare into the eyes of a man who was given the vocation to resolve me from my Sins with the help of God, and then I would leave and pick it up, right where I left off. That kills me, that kills us. By the state of Original sin that was given to us, it's natural for us to sin, it's in our nature and always will be. However we shouldn't take the Mercy of God for granted and that's what was hard even for me to comprehend.
I was standing in the river there at the Monastery and I remember being so cold and so covered that It was so hard to walk and move. The wind blew up against my back and sometimes I would lose my footing beneath the current and plunge into waist high waters. I began to think of all the sin that I had brought with me and how likewise, it was the same. So heavy, so cold and keeping me unable to move, sometimes scared to keep moving forward because with all that weight you don't ever know if you'll go deeper with it all and drown or sometimes become carried away by the water that is pushing you.

I thought..

Even like the likewise, we push Christ away by our actions, we knock him down and repeatedly keep him from getting to where he would like to be with us. It's almost like our sinful nature allows us to be like this, like the water, where at one point, we become so strong and in favor of doing whatever we want to do. At the same time, I thought of how just like that raging water, and raging sin, so too, is the Mercy of Christ with us. So strong, so full that it's like a giant river that is cabable of covering anything, no matter how big or bad of a past we have. That same water, that brings us down and pushes us around, is the same water that lifts us up and holds us high.

When I returned home, that analogy has stuck with me ever since, and I wrote a song about it.. Remember, no matter where you've been or where you have gone, our God is a kind, loving and merciful God. Like the water flows, so does his Mercy. Here's the video link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dNxB5XJ9vQM&feature=youtu.be

Monday, June 18, 2012

Pecos, New Mexico 2012: Mercy Undeserving

This past weekend I went on a mission trip to Pecos, New Mexico to visit the Benedictine Monks. It was a 4 day retreat for the Lifeteen and it went pretty well. We learned a lot about the silence and how it is where our souls are at their best ability in finding Christ. We learned how in Silence, really the only thing keeping ourselves from Christ, is ultimately ourselves. We worked there at the Monastery voluntering to clean up some of their fields, buildings and gardens. It was a great time off, out of the world, and into our hearts to slow us down for self examination. For me it was rejuvenating, to serve once again, what I, what we are called to do.
Before the trip, I knew I had to make it to confession just so that I would be in the right state of mind when I went. So I went, and nothing really changed for me. Deep down inside I wanted to feel like I was forgiven, but honestly, I felt like I was just the same as when I walked in the confessional. I doubted God's mercy, and his forgiveness. Throughout the trip I tried to work when it was time to work, eat when it was time to eat, and pray when it was time to pray. In reality, it is a very hard thing to do, just to keep a balance of life is hard and I fail at it every single day. The first night we had confessions again, and I felt the need to go and just re-examine myself one more time before I went. So I did, and for the second time, I doubted again the mercy that God grants us, I doubted his presence and his forgiveness. But just like the last time, I was putting it inside of my head that I was forgiven and still somehow didn't feel like it. The next night we had the exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, I prayed, everybody prayed, and I remember feeling so immersed, so focused on the Eucharist that no matter how hard I tried, I could not look away, I was so attracted and so relieved that at that instant, I felt the inner presence and mercy that God had given me. It was like a strike of a match, that was all there, It just needed that initiative to spark the flame. When the retreat was over, we got our rocks and through Divine Providence, I got the word 'Mercy' written on mine.. I think my devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary helped me understand and see that, without her intercession I don't think I would have been revealed the true Mercy that God offers for us. It helped me realize that no matter how useless you feel, no matter how unworthy you feel, God still finds a way to forgive us, no matter how much we done against him, no matter how many times we have turned our backs on him he still finds a way to call us back and pour that undeserving mercy into our hearts.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Brother Lead Me

My brother Nicholas, finally graduated from High School. That's right, class of 2012. I remember like it was yesterday when I was in the same spot, walked the same stage while he was just beginning the same path that I had took. All our lives, we spent our time following each other around waiting for the other to take initiative and take the lead. I can't say it was me but, my brother too. I believe that when you follow someone, your actually leading another and that's what it was about. Leading the people you love, no matter where they end up when it's all done with.  I think of the story of Moses and the Israelites, how he led those people out of Egypt, how he was so set on doing what he had to do that he did whatever it took to get the job done. For his family, his sisters and his brothers. I think we're all called to lead in some way or another. Some ways might be different than others, but we all have brothers, we all have sisters, and a family who needs our help. Congratulations to my little brother, who even though is younger than me is still in some way older than me. Congrats.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

I Am Third

After Student mass I felt the need to pray in the presence of Jesus. I was kneeling before the tabernacle, humbled, in fear, and just worried. I remember the only thing I was worried about was myself. I kept asking for my own spiritual guidance, my own renewal, just my own things, beings selfish. When I thought I had asked for everything I needed I got up, knelt before the tabernacle and walked my selfish butt over to my friend, who had just walked in the church. He seemed troubled, like something was bothering him. So I asked him if he was alright, he shook his head no and looked at the ground. He told me his grandpa had been put in the hospital and might not make it. At that instant, I realized that my first priority should be worrying about other people and not myself. I realized I shouldn't be first, because God is. I shouldn't be second, because other people are. I am Third.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Alternative Spring Break

Spring Break these days is all party if your my age. Most of my friends head over to Padre Island, Florida beaches, Galveston Bay and have a good time. This year I decided to take a trip with the school to New Orleans for an alternative Spring Break trip. I thought it would interesting to return to the City where my calling and vocation was first initiated to me in 2006 when I visited to help rebuild the city after Katrina. So I was anxious and eager to start working and satisfy the desire that I've always had to serve people who truly need help. However during the trip, I didn't feel the same about my service, something seemed to be missing. We worked only two days out of the week and I was disappointed in myself, in the group, just the outcome of our work. In my reflection I started to see something greater. I started seeing that service isn't just about working and breaking a sweat. It isn't about standing on a 30 foot ladder tearing down an entire plastered ceiling. It's about just being there for the people, for the kids, and for the city.
Our main objective while we were there was just being present to the kids and showing them that there is other places that care, and show respect to them. Where we stayed was a rough rural area in New Orleans where the homes of these kids are mostly influenced by drugs and the business of drugs, and just violence. So we were there to show them that the home they live in, is not how the world is outside of home. I took me a long time to realize that just being present to the kids means more to them then anything in the world. They might be young but they do have feelings. It was sad when we left, all they kept asking us is if they would see us the next day and help them with their homework. When you told them no, we weren't gonna be back, they would just get this sadness in their heads and lower their shoulders. It was sad to see, but since they were kids they would soon forget and run around again, just like if they knew that they wanted to make the time with you last.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The American Dream

Today I met up with a friend of mine while I was walking to dinner, we crossed tracks and walked together towards the cafe. As always, I asked him how he was doing and how is day was going and, as always, he said "Yeah, I'm good" in his deep Japanese accent. Shinya, whose a communications major here at the school had the overwhelming task of memorizing the entire "I have a dream" speech given by Martin Luther King Jr. on Aug 28, 1963. As we were walking, I soon realized it was the longest walk to the cafeteria I had ever taken, but as we were walking I told him to show me what he's got. So I grabbed his paper, and waited for him to start the speech that he would soon say in front of the entire school. He muffled his voice, and began...
 ...
He began with strength in his voice, and his chin up high. He had the same stagger and monotone Dr. King had the day he gave his speech. Turned out Shinya had studied Dr. King's voice and speech so well, that he nailed every pause, every exaggeration and emotion that it had me amazed.

Shinya Continued in his slow Japanese accent...

       "And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”
....

"I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
I have a dream today!"
...
As I was following along with the paper in my hand, I began to think of an amazing reflection and revelation in my head. It was like Shinya was ambassador for all people of this nation who have been abandoned, starved to death, mistaken, lost with no where to go, hungry, cold and homeless and in need of shelter. I listened, and just pictured all these people in my head crying out the exact same thing "I have a dream" the dream to be free, to be healthy, the dream of an American dream.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

From Catholic Soup...

I would like to share my posts from my previous blog called Catholic Soup. I have about 20 posts that are posted on it, so I thought I would share the ones I like with you:

From Catholic Soup
:

An Act of Love

Knowing that Jesus Christ sacrificed himself only for me to gain eternal life is one of those things that really gets to my heart. He suffered what he suffered only for us to gain a better relationship with him. He endured all that he could endure only for us. He was nailed to the cross by us, and still had the courage to die for us. That my friends, is Love.

Imagine that your just a bystander, you hear all of this commotion out in the street people shouting and harassing a man that you don't know, but you have seen him before. You go over to the crowds trying to see over the shoulders from the person in front of you. You have no idea what is going on, all you know is that right now people really hate this man. As you and the crowds follow this man up the mountain, you feel what seems to be this man's heart beating inside of you. The only thing you can do is watch as this man suffers and falls not once, not twice, but three times. Sweat forms around your neck, making you feel more useless by the minute because now, the sound of cold hard nails are breaking the wood and penetrating the skin. This heartbeat that you feel is even stronger and feels that its keeping you alive making you fall on your knees because suddenly you know that this is an Act of Love. Not choice or what somebody planned.


Christ wants us to be like him, live for him. He wants us to experience all that we have so that we can experience him. We can never know God completely, but for him to die for us means that he most certainly wants us to be one with him. Loving as Christ did is what we are called to do, to love everyone we meet unconditionally just as he did. Christ is with us where ever we go, we may not be able to heal the blind and cure the sick, but we can do it spiritually. The phrase dying not only means what it is, but also a chance to rise and raise a whole other Act. An Act of Love

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Verso L'alto (Toward the top)

In the bible, there are stories of Jesus climbing to the top of mountains with his disciples so they can pray. Usually, it took them most of the day to climb up to the top, and then back down again after they had prayed. In Lawton, OK are some of the oldest range of mountains in the whole United States. The mountains have a similar region to those in Jerusalem, because of this, there is a nearby replica of the holy land, called the "Holy City" which is man made city depicting Jerusalem. So, yesterday I had the chance to climb up these mountains to experience a little bit of what it was like for Jesus and his disciples at the time. These mountains have huge rock faces that we had to climb up and over, sometimes under caves, or through brush, even jumping from one rock to another with a 30-50 foot drop beneath you. We were on our hands and knees pulling ourselves up, jumping from one rock to the next, even up and over rock walls. As my friends and I were climbing, the air started to get thinner, and by the time we knew it we were sucking wind and out of breathe. The only thing that kept us moving was because one, the adventure and excitement, and two, well, as Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati once said, "The higher we go, the better we shall hear the voice of Christ." So as I was climbing I tried to imagine Jesus in front of me leading me to the top. I tried to picture him climbing these huge rock faces, using all-fours and then turning around to help up his disciples if they had lost their footing. The whole time we were climbing, we had to use tactful skills of balance, hand-eye coordination, strength, and then jump. When we got to the top, I remember looking out for miles and seeing nothing but the region of rocks, nearby waters, and even more mountains! It was breathtaking, and exciting to see and realize once again that God created this. The thought of being on top of a mountain, made me feel the presence of God there with us. It was amazing. The three of us sat there on top of the mountain looking out, we prayed a rosary there in honor of God and all that he had done for us. For Blessed Pier Giorgio for being our inspiration and finally the Virgin Mary for being our great model of love, compassion and obedience.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

For the Family

I went home the first weekend in February for a wedding. My cousin, the one person that's been a part of my life ever since me and my brother were young. We were always with each other as kids, visited each others houses, slept over all the time, we were always in the back yard messing around trying to make up some kind of game. Anytime we couldn't go over an visit, yeah, like all the others kids we were upset. It was a great childhood, we have some good memories that we can't ever forget. After High School, my cousin decided to join the Military, it was pretty rough for me and my brother, we really didn't know what to think, say. We didn't know where he would end up, how he would come out, for better or for worse. So it was all just a big mystery for pretty much the whole family. Some years later after being stationed in Germany and then being sent out to Afghanistan, he told me he was getting married. I was happy for him, except at the same time I became disappointed and selfish. It was a gift from God as I saw it, and it helped me learn and listen that a lot of times the situation isn't about me. I think so many times we wonder from any situation, "what will I get out of this?" or sometimes "What about me?" and I found myself asking myself these questions in a selfish mood. I prayed that I grow selfless and be happy for the decision he had made.
Before then, the family hadn't really been getting along very well, everybody was off in their own little world it was just different as a family. During Christmas the family wasn't around, or Thanksgiving everybody was at their own houses the community that we had before we just missing, and it didn't feel like family at all. During the wedding, It was an awkward vibe between members of the family, almost like if we didn't know each other anymore. In my reflection, I think it was the best thing that could happen, it was great for the family to get back together at least for one thing, a wedding, which ironically creates a family by uniting two people into one flesh. As the night went on, there was less tension and everybody seemed to have a great time on the dance floor. It was a great wedding, one that I think was for the sake of the family.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

For the Silent Cries of the Unborn

It's been 6 years since I was first introduced into the Prolife movement, each year the facts have a profound impact on me more and more they change. I've worked for Respect Life Ministries in Amarillo for a few years, participating in their annual Marches, banquet and events to raise awareness to building a new culture of life. My advocacy began to develop as I grew older, speaking to Senators in Texas, like Rick Perry, about the Dignity of all human life, even spoke on radio stations. It's easy to get caught up in what we have done, I realized that there is never enough in serving to protect the life's of the innocent babies.
This year was my second year being apart of the National March for Life in Washington, D.C. and it's always cool to see so many people of so many different cultures gather to fight against the same cause. The reality and awakening of it all, is that today in our society there are people who don't even know this is happening, it is known as being safe, and easy when it is roughly not. It's our job to educate.
Together in learning different facts, hearing different speakers talk, attending mass, having fellowship, and finally marching on Capital Hill, I have learned that we should do everything we can to help end this crime that nobody sees. Raise awareness and give people the facts of what is really happening inside the womb of a mother. Not only here in our own country but also on the international level as well. In China, we all know they have the One Child Policy, with males being the favored gender,some families are forced to abort the baby girls during pregnancy, abort them after they are born, or abandon them. This is Gendercide and its happening now.
Every year has impact on my life and it calls me to be an even better advocate then I have ever been before, and to be the voice for those who have no voice.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

A Shepherd's Love

Some years ago, while I was about 16 my father had his own little ranch back behind our home. It was a pretty big piece of land, one that grew lush green in the spring. When it rained, the water all gathered up at the bottom of the valley. My father had sheep in his land and every morning he found one who was victim of the wolves who visited the night before. This happened a number of times, finally my dad came to us as a family at the dinner table and asked me an my brother to join him in sleeping in the barn to scare away any predators. That evening me an my brother packed up sleeping bags, pillows and blankets for our little adventure we would be having. I remember the night being so calm you could hear the wolves howl in the distance. The sky was so clear that the stars could be seen for miles. That night we slept on the roof of the barn inside a huge cardboard box so we could shoot the wolves from the top. As the night went on, the storm clouds grew closer an closer, it started to rain, an thunder shook the ground. As the sky lite up from the lightning, crashing and popping only got louder and louder. After a few minutes, our cardboard shelter was ruined and we were forced to climb down inside. By the time we got inside the barn we were all soaked. All I remember is falling asleep from being so tired that night. Using the sound of a thousand drops of water every second to make me fall asleep. When I woke up to the rain hitting my face, I remember seeing this huge black figure with arms stretched out looking down on me an my brother, with a blanket in hands to block the rain. Protecting us, an doing everything possible to keep us dry. It was my father. He had sacrificed his whole night sleep to protect us. Ironically, it was his sheep that he was sacrificing, but his sheep he was protecting. Just like my father sacrificed himself for us, so does Christ right? Of course, God sacrificed his only son so that we could have eternal life and I think that alone is amazing for us to understand. It was out of love that he did that, out of compassion and its great to know God was thinking of us at that time.
I think its only fair that I share the ending of this story even though how inspiring it is.
The "Wolf" we were looking for turned out to be our family dog that killed the sheep
And...
The rain never stopped, it got harder and louder. We ended up running home in the pouring rain, laughing.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Just Another Start

Christmas and New Years went by pretty fast, It's great to start another year off in the state of living. The older I get it is like the more I become thankful each and everyday just for the things I have. When your little it is hard to be thankful for some of those things. Once you live in solitude and live in silence it's easy to notice what is hard to notice. Anyways, It's about that time of year to kick off another semester here at St. Greg's along with the new 2012 year. Every semester that digs a little deeper into my life, is starting to take a toll, It's going by so fast that I am starting to think that I don't have time for anything. I get pretty nervous, when I think about where I'm going after I leave this place. You know and it's just another reminder for myself to not look into the future. Just as easy as it is to look in the past, it's the same for the future. So in my own thoughts I am reminded to live in the present, and everyday it's getting harder and harder to live by that. In reality, it's hard to do what God wants you to do in general, I'm trying really hard to focus, focus on my school work, focus on my spirituality, health, and responsibilities. Sounds like a lot on my plate but I think I can do it. For me it's just another start.

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