personal: January 2006 Archives

Respect Life Sunday

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My homily notes from today. Transcribed from my Palm.
Radical choice costs something.
Leave behind - go forward.
Leave the comfort and step out in faith.
Don't be like the squid, who having found a rock of security then consumes his own brain.
Let God challenge us.
Let us follow where he leads.
Take the chance if it is time to move on.
What tangles up our lives?

4500 abortions daily in the USA alone! Not only women are affected. Men are hurt by Fatherhood Aborted.
We are called to be agents of mercy.
We all struggle with our personal sin(s).
We take our self (selves) out of communion (excommunicate our selves) by our sins.
We lose when we proclaim I not we.
Father actually did an excellent job tying together the message of the readings with the pro-life message. Jonah was sent to proclaim the Lord's message to Ninevah - he fought it but eventually obeyed the Lord and the people of Ninevah repented. Are we listening to the Lord's commandment to carry His message to His people? Are we letting our fear keep us from proclaiming the Gospel - especially the Gospel of life, the message of repentance and forgiveness? Have we listened to God's call in our life? Are we willing to leave behind our present life to become "Fishers of men"?
Tonight in confirmation prep we also discussed life issues. The first hour was a presentation from the local Crisis Pregnancy Center. She brought in models of fetal development and showed the kids just what the unborn look like at various stages of development. She talked about the 3-fold mission of the CPC to protect the innocent unborn:
prevention through chastity (abstinence based teaching);
intervention through providing counselling, referral to prenatal care, ultrasound to show moms their baby, financial and social support;
and rehabilitation - after abortion counselling, healing, and referrals.
Then we broke into the small groups for the second hour. My small group has several kids from the local Catholic High school. My co-teacher is an attorney and I am in health care so we decided to break the subject up between us. He talked about Law and Morality and how being a practicing Catholic is counter cultural because we believe in Absolute Truth and firm moral laws (and that the laws of God are more important than the laws of man). I talked about the realities of abortion and taught the specifics of what the Church says about life issues. You know, the non-negotiable issues. Like the right to life begins at conception and ends at natural death. And that direct abortion is always morally wrong. And that euthanasia and destructive embryonic stem cell research are morally evil. And we talked about how best to prevent abortion (chastity). And how the sin of abortion often is the consequence of other sins like adultery, fornication, or contraception (that last one perked up a few eyebrows but we didn't have time to get fully into it).
I'm not quite sure how we got into it, but the morality (or lack thereof) of in vitro fertilization got into the conversation. Many of the kids were quite unconvinced that IVF was morally wrong - and believing that IVF was OK they were then arguing that embryonic stem cell research was perfectly OK because "You might as well get some use because they're going to die anyhow. I mean, what if they could save thousands of lives?" To which I pointed out that I'm going to die anyhow and maybe I should let them cut me up and use my organs to save the lives of a dozen other people?
We had a good discussion going and I wish that we would have had another hour or so.......

I love teaching these kids. My biggest frustration is that the sequence of teaching is somewhat erratic so that there isn't always a good foundation for the designated subject matter. My other frustration is that there is so little time. We get 2 hours every other week over - that's it. It isn't much time compared to sports, TV, and the family's social lives. But we do what we can. pray for us?


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Thank you all for the birthday wishes and prayers. They are much appreciated. We went out to dinner to celebrate, then on Friday I was asked to speak briefly at our local Ultreya (Cursillo follow up meeting). Saturday we finally took down the tree and the creches and did music for the vigil Mass, and Sunday we fought some pretty fierce blowing snow, icy roads, etc to take our daughter to play at the Youth Symphony's winter concert. I slipped on the ice and bruised my knee and twisted my ankle - it isn't too bad but it twinges all the time.
Will try to write some real stuff later this week.


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51 years ago today, I entered the world, a 46 minutes late (17th)birthday present to my mom, a 12 days early (20th) birthday present to my father. 33 years ago today, I entered the Catholic church during a daily Mass in a small chapel on the campus of Loyola Marymount University. After hearing my first confession,Father Randall Roche S.J. received my profession of faith, anointed me with the oils and conferred upon me the sacrament of confirmation, and gave me my first holy communion. Thirteen months later, he also witnessed the joining of me and my husband into the bonds of Holy Matrimony.
Three years and three days ago (1/9/03) I posted my first entry on this blog at its original site on blogspot.
It's been an eventful life, so far. Unless I beat the odds, I'm more than halfway through my walk on this earth. I hope and pray that I've been able to do what it is that I was created for. Of course, I'll only find that out for sure from the other side. But that shouldn't stop me from trying daily to do whatever I'm called to, if I can figure it out.

not sure what to title this

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Life has been throwing us a few curve balls lately, and I would really appreciate both prayers and, if you feel so inspired, guidance/inspiration/advice. The email link works pretty well, and comments are also emailed to me as they are posted.
I can't go into a lot of detail, but my employer is a federally qualified health center. That means that our funding is unpredictable and the needs for our services increase exponentially as the economy tanks. Of course, our funding usually decreases just as the need for us increases - that's the way things tend to work. There are non profits and there are non-profits. Some are pretty flush financially - the Ford Foundation, the Kaiser Family Foundation, Planned Parenthood, etc. And some get pretty desperate for funds - your local community health center, your local public radio station, EWTN, etc.
Now, it seems logical to me that midwives are a cost effective and generally good way to provide prenatal care and birth services. But OB residents can not only provide a lot of that care, they can also provide funding to a clinical site (to pay for the providers that supervise them, for one thing). We have OB residents, but there are not enough of them, nor do they have enough time, to take care of all our patients. So we schedule them to see the high risk moms and invite them to meet the low-risk moms and allow them to do labor and birth care under the supervision of OBs for the high risk and midwives for the low risk patients. It is clunky, but it has been creaking along for the last 6 years or so.

Things seem to be poised for a change. Some of the recent changes in funding for health care are having a negative effect. We are already being pressured to see patients every 15 or 20 minutes, and to do not only their care but their teaching and the documentation of that care within this short timeframe. If the financial constraints continue, we may be forced to provide the same care for the same # of patients at 75% of the time and at 75% of the reimbursement level.

I'm not sure where this is going to send me, in particular. I love working with the population that I serve, especially the immigrant moms. I have some patients that have been seeing my since I arrived at this practice more than 5 years ago. I am on second or third babies for some of these moms, and I have whole families for whom I am their partera, their 'doctora'. But I know that I am not indispensible.

Pray that I will be able to discern what, if any, message God has for me as I adjust to some of these changes. Pray that I will be able to be humble and obedient to His will. Pray that I will continue to be able to discuss this openly with my beloved husband. Especially pray that I will be able to get my self out of the way.

Happy New Year

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I've noticed that I often don't seem to have topical to the date(or even the season) posts up on this blog. It's probably because I really don't pay that much attention most of the time - I've been known to look at my husband and ask him what day of the week it is. And I am so glad that most supermarkets now take ATM cards, because I used to look really ridiculous asking the clerk to tell me the date.
I used to at least be able to look in my Magnificat and get half a clue, but about 6 months ago my dearly beloved took a shine to the Magnificat and I was no longer able to carry it with me everywhere.

Ah, but I had my revenge! I thought about getting him his own subscription to Magnificat, but I then went a few steps further into POD-dom. My big Christmas present to him was the four volume set of the Liturgy of the Hours - the leather bound set with all the ribbons. Let me tell you, this is not the best time of year to be trying to learn how to navigate that baby. Between trying to figure out which set of readings apply to a day that is not only the Sunday in the octave of Christmas but is also the feast of the Circumcision (or whatever the newer name is) seemed to be baffling him. Let me just say that while waiting to say morning prayer before breakfast, the pancakes got cold.
I can hardly wait for some one to put the Liturgy of the Hours into a Palm friendly format.
Anyhow, I now get to figure out how to stuff the Magnificat into my purse. It's former space is now occupied by a CRSV Bible that I picked up when Scott Hahn spoke at a local parish.
Maybe I will have to bite the bullet and look for a slightly larger purse. I hate buying purses. Most of them are ridiculously arranged and horribly overpriced. I have never understood the fascination that some women have with them. But then, I also don't get the shoes thing. I'm happy if I can find a pair of shoes that fit and don't look too clunky and don't cost my first born male child his manhood.

We had a thoroughly boring New Year's Eve. Stayed up till midnight, popped a bottle of cheap but alcoholic bubbly, had one glass each, and went to sleep. Today we had at least one meal of traditional food - blackeye peas cooked with ham hocks and seasoned with pepper sauce, served with my yellow cornbread cooked in my cast-iron skillet. Let me know if you need a recipe.

Hoping and praying that the year of our Lord, 2006, will bring more joys than sorrows to all of us, and that we will endure if that is what He requires of us. God bless all of you.

addendum: Thanks to the readers who suggested I check out Universalis - even though I have the Today site linked, I hadn't checked it out further. I will probably download the trial version and see if it works well for me before shelling out the 30 pounds sterling for the full version.

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About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the personal category from January 2006.

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