Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Photo editing fun

For Mothers Day Phil took us all out for dinner and found a place that was offering a free family portrait.  It was very sweet of him :-)

They took several shots and gave us two pictures - both pictures were ok but not everyone was looking their best in either picture.

So I decided to apply my amateur photo editing skills (in gimp) and to the best of both pictures to create this one.  I know I'm not going to win any awards for my efforts since I began with a scanned image anyways but it was fun and now everyone is smiling.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Happy Pentecost Sunday!

When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled,
they were all in one place together.
And suddenly there came from the sky
a noise like a strong driving wind,
and it filled the entire house in which they were.
Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire,
which parted and came to rest on each one of them.
And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit
and began to speak in different tongues,
as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim.
Pentecost Sunday is the "Birthday of the Church" when we're sent out to proclaim the Gospel to all nations. 

This Feast Day is the third most important feast in the Church (after Easter and Christmas) and has special significance to our family as the Holy Spirit has been guiding us in our journey of Faith.  Today in Pope Francis's homily  he spoke of the surprises of the Holy Spirit and that He calls us to strike out on new paths.  Truly this has been our family's experience especially the past few years and my own throughout my adult life:

"Newness always makes us a bit fearful, because we feel more secure if we have everything under control, if we are the ones who build, programme and plan our lives in accordance with our own ideas, our own comfort, our own preferences. This is also the case when it comes to God. Often we follow him, we accept him, but only up to a certain point. It is hard to abandon ourselves to him with complete trust, allowing the Holy Spirit to be the soul and guide of our lives in our every decision. We fear that God may force us to strike out on new paths and leave behind our all too narrow, closed and selfish horizons in order to become open to his own. Yet throughout the history of salvation, whenever God reveals himself, he brings newness and change, and demands our complete trust: Noah, mocked by all, builds an ark and is saved; Abram leaves his land with only a promise in hand; Moses stands up to the might of Pharaoh and leads his people to freedom; the apostles, huddled fearfully in the Upper Room, go forth with courage to proclaim the Gospel. This is not a question of novelty for noveltys sake, the search for something new to relieve our boredom, as is so often the case in our own day. The newness which God brings into our life is something that actually brings fulfilment, that gives true joy, true serenity, because God loves us and desires only our good. Let us ask ourselves: Are we open to Gods surprises? Or are we closed and fearful before the newness of the Holy Spirit? Do we have the courage to strike out along the new paths which Gods newness sets before us, or do we resist, barricaded in transient structures which have lost their capacity for openness to what is new?" (Pope Francis' Pentecost Sunday Homily- emphasis my own:-)

Praise God for the gift of the Holy Spirit!
Come Holy Spirit, fill the Hearts of Thy faithful and enkindle in them the fire of Thy Love, Send forth Thy Spirit and we shall be created and Thou shalt renew the faith of the Earth.  

O, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations, Through Christ Our Lord, Amen.