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Archive for the ‘Faith’ Category


In the Catholic calendar, the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary is always celebrated every September 8. The Blessed Mother occupies a unique place in the history of salvation.

There were years when I blogged about Mama  Mary’s birthday and my stats have gone up by the thousand. I loved  those times that readers appreciated my posts.  As I’ve always said,  as Catholics, we don’t worship Mama Mary but we venerate her. Veneration comes from the Latin word veneratio or dulia, Greek δουλεία, douleia. It is  the act of honoring a saint, a person who has been identified as having a high degree of sanctity or holiness. Since she is the mother of the Kings of kings, she is the saint of saints. We honor her by praying the rosary, observing her feasts in the Catholic calendar, or when we bow our heads while praying the creed.

Years ago, I made this meme from a photo I culled from the net using one of the apps I discovered earlier.

Happy Birthday MAMA MARY.

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LET GO! How many of us are willing to take the plunge and just let circumstances and events take charge for a change?  Most of us are afraid of the untrodden path, we stick to things familiar.   True, familiarity gives us a sense of well-being, but when we let it rule our lives, it stagnates, and the comfortable feeling turns into unease that only change can alleviate.

I used to be one of those people who cannot survive the day without everything planned.  I used to worry a lot when I get sidetracked. Giving in to the “what if” won’t always be a choice and has no reason to be.  And knowing  that there are certain things which are beyond our control, makes us a little accepting.  One finally learns that life is not always to our liking and the set of rules which we allow ourselves to follow  won’t  always be acceptable to a few.  How are we to enjoy life if we won’t learn to let go?    Let go of the angst, it makes you miserable. Let go of the hatred so you will learn to love.  Let go of the anger, don’t let it consume you.  Let go of fear, for God is always here.

When I think of the times that I went through battling with cancer, I could not imagine a life without pain.  It is easy to shed a tear or two but it is more difficult to pretend that nothing is wrong.  Chances are, you seem to forget when you are surrounded by your family and friends but when you are alone, everything is magnified.  The pain is a tight knot surrounding your heart.

I learned to let go and let Him be the central force and figure in my life.  I learned to smile despite the tears.  I learned to share my plight with others despite the fear.  I learned to embrace pain and let it a constant reminder that I am not alone in this battle.  It may take a while, it may take sometime, it may take several or more visits to the doctor or it may take forever, but I am looking forward to the days when I’ll be truly and completely well again, without these nagging thoughts of being too insecure and too vulnerable.

Faith is such a personal thing. And when nothing is left, your faith will carry you through.

Let go!

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Woke up early to the sound of heavy rains pouring down the roof. I thought super typhoon Maria  is  already here. Good thing it was just one of those thunderstorms. How early it is though.  Couldn’t sleep last night, I was awake by 1 am, read for a while until 3 am then tried to catch more sleep  finally waking up at 5 am. Caught the early morning mass at 6 am.

What’s on your mind Arlene? Same question I always see on my wall when I open Facebook.

Blogging took a back seat for a while. I went back to my doctor for the urine culture results and my CEA marker testing. Maybe that was why for the previous weeks, I still had UTI because the antibiotics I was given before was resistant. The only option was to change to antibiotics that is sensitive to my ailment. Come to think of it, all of them were injectable.  My doctor requested for a shot right there and then. I was worried cause I didn’t bring enough cash to pay for the medicine except my health card.  I am glad that it was also covered. I had a skin test on both arms. One of the things I am so fearful about is when the nurse do the skin testing which is so painful. They have to wait at least thirty minutes to see if I  was allergic to the drug or not.  Those few seconds  of intense pain when finally, the nurse injected it on my right buttock….wow! Imagine, ten grams of it. I have to go back on Tuesday (banning the bad weather) for another urinalysis and follow-up check-up.

I just closed my eyes in prayer when I saw the result of my CEA. The normal range is 0 to 5 while I got 9.22. My doctor said it is nothing to worry about.  Higher or elevated CEA result is not just because of recurring colon cancer but through other things like my infection.  I’ve been in remission for nine years now and I hope it is finally gone.

Our friendly neighbor gave me a bag of fresh guyabano leaves to use as tea infusion. It needs to be air-dried though to keep it long.  It is soursop to you dear readers. It has so many healthy benefits including its ability to protect you from cancer cells.  I bought a locally prepared guyabano tea too and a box of malunggay   (moringa) tea.

Health is wealth, we always say. That is so true because when you are not healthy, you are poorer than the ordinary man on the street.

 

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I found this amazing and inspiring video from YouTube. I seldom share videos here but this one is so lovely.

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Palm  Sunday.

We just attended an anticipated mass for Palm  Sunday. We normally don’t hear mass on Saturday nights but Palm Sunday  has become  an exception. Churches are usually full during Palm  Sunday. Having a good seat  while listening and participating through a Sunday mass is always a must for me.

 

We bought two bundles of palm fronds for blessing. There was a short procession from the entrance of the church up to the altar while the priest blessed the palms.  Palm  Sunday  is the beginning of Holy  Week  where we celebrate Our Lord’s triumphant entrance into Jerusalem. It ends before Easter Sunday.

I miss Visita Iglesia. We usually visit at least seven churches for the fourteen Stations of the Cross but since Josef  started working at an American bank  where Holy Thursday and Good Friday are not Holy Days of Obligation, we just confine ourselves to our Parish.

I want to share this lovely  Palm Sunday prayer  with you all, (from ibelieve.com).

Dear God,

Thank You for sending Your Son and paving the way for our lives to be set free through Jesus’ death on the cross. Thank You for what this day stands for – the beginning of Holy Week, the start of the journey towards the power of the cross, the victory of the Resurrection, and the rich truth that Jesus truly is our King of Kings.

“Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord…”

We give You praise and honor for Your ways are righteous and true. We give You worship for You are holy and just. We will declare that Your love stands firm forever. For Your loving kindness endures forever.

Thank You that Your ways are far greater than our ways, Your thoughts far deeper than our thoughts. Thank You that You had a plan to redeem. Thank You that You make all things new. Thank You that Your face is towards the righteous, and You hear our prayers, and know our hearts. Help us to stay strong and true to you. Help us not to follow after the voice of the crowds, but to press in close to You, to hear Your whispers, and seek after You alone.

We praise You, we bless You Lord! Thank You that You reign supreme and we are more than conquerors through the gift of Christ!

In the Mighty Name of Jesus,

Amen.

 

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Hello friends!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Contrary to what some believe that Christmas is over, December 25 is just the beginning of the twelve days of  Christmas which will end on January 5.  It is also known as the Twelvetide, a festive season that celebrates the Nativity of Jesus. Remember the song, Twelve Days of Christmas? It is an English Christmas carol which is thought to be French in origin.

Accordingly, each element of the song  is a code word for religious truth.  I found these on the web this morning.

1. The partridge in a pear tree is Jesus.
2. The two turtledoves are the Old and New Testaments.
3. Three French hens stand for faith, hope and love.
4. The four calling birds are the four Gospels.
5. The five gold rings recall the Hebrew Torah (Law), or the Pentateuch, the first five books of the Old Testament.
6. The six geese a-laying stand for the six days of creation.
7. The seven swans a-swimming represent the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit.
8. The eight maids a-milking are the eight Beatitudes.
9. Nine ladies dancing are the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit.
10. The ten lords a-leaping are the Ten Commandments.
11. Eleven pipers piping represent the eleven faithful Apostles.
12. Twelve drummers drumming symbolize the twelve points of doctrine in the Apostles Creed.

The song speaks of our Christian faith. ““The Twelve Days of Christmas,” was written as a kind of secret catechism that could be sung in public without fear of arrest – a learning or memory aid to Christians in fact. Each verse refers to a teaching of church doctrine — with the partridge being Christ who died on a tree and the “True Love” being God the Father, who gave us all gifts. The twelve days of Christmas are the twelve days between Christmas Day, Dec. 25th, the birth of Jesus, and the Epiphany, Jan. 6th, the day Christians celebrate the arrival of the Magi (Wise Men) and the revelation of Christ as the light of the world.”

Looking forward to 2018. How was your Christmas celebration?

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We just got home.

We attended the late evening mass at our village chapel and I was pleasantly surprised that one of my favorite priests of the Marian Missionaries of the Holy Cross was the mass presider.  We used to attend Fr.  Leo’s Sunday masses at the nearby Parish but for the past year, we switched to  the  big church in our town. Josef loved and liked  that it is colder there.They have these super large ceiling fans. I’ve missed his uplifting and inspiring homilies all these  months. It was nice being blessed again after the mass.

It was a busy Sunday for us,  with the  “change oil” for the car and later doing the  groceries at SM Ortigas.  Yes, I already included  some groceries that we will use come December. Prices of basic commodities have gone  up again.  Some supermarkets  take advantage of the busy season where most buyers stack up on the necessary grocery items that they will use for Noche Buena.  Believe me, sometimes they are out of the shelves  when you need them.

I have a new favorite.  Every time I happen to pass by BreadTalk, I make sure that I buy even a slice of their Spring  In The City rolls. I just love it. This afternoon, I bought three. It is more costly than ordinary rolls but you get the best, freshly baked and yummy.

photo by BreadTalk

A slice of this roll is  enough for snack.  Add a cup of  freshly brewed coffee and you’re good to go. Their cheese and raisin bread is also a winner.  There are nuts inside ♥.  Sometimes you discover something to your liking and you stick to it 🙂

Remember those tea light holders that make use of tea light candles to heat the oil    made of different scents that emit those wonderful, wonderful aroma? Some holders are made of ceramics.  My goodness, the whole set  costs  the earth but I promised myself I will buy one as a birthday gift….to me of course….haha!  I have tea light holders here but the lamps are just irresistible.

How was your Sunday?

 

 

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