Fish Fry At St. Michael’s, March 18th

Our penultimate fish fry led us to the east end of Jefferson County to St. Michael’s Church, one of the fastest growing parishes in the archdiocese.  We were not at the fish fry long, as we arrived later than usual.  As such, we actually missed dessert (a true penance!), but was able to celebrate a Holy Hour in honor of 2 seminarians who were recently ordained deacons.  Congratulations Casey Sanders and Michael Martin!

The menu showed two new items:  Jalapeño poppers and mozzarella sticks.

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I am actually surprised we have not seen those items this year, given how they are Lent friendly, and also somewhat child friendly.  Alas, I stuck with a familiar meal:  fried fish with green beans, onion rings, and Coors Light.

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As mentioned, I did not have dessert this time, as they had run out by the time we were seated.  It was also less crowded than expected because we ate towards the end of the shift.    My guess is that given the size of the parish and the school attached, we missed rush hour.

One thing that was missed (again, probably due to our late arrival) were the typical side items, like cake wheels and raffles.  Instead, since it’s March, there were a couple TV screens for the March Madness games.  The game on the screen that night was Texas A&M vs. UW-Green Bay, eventually won by the Aggies.  (NOTE:  The author of this blog is a Wisconsin Badger fan.  While the UW-Pittsburgh game was on at the time, none of the TV screens were playing the…well, what one would call a game.  Nonetheless, they prevailed.)

We were also joined by two native Panamanians for our tour this week.  They tried the fish and the Jalapeño poppers.  It ended up being their first fish fry ever, as Panama does not hold fish fries, despite being a primarily Catholic country.  They thoroughly enjoyed the new experience.

Fish Fry At St. Michael’s, March 18th

Lenten Reflection, March 23rd

For the sake of the joy which lay before him he endured the cross, heedless of its shame. He has taken his seat at the right of the throne of God. Remember how he endured the opposition of sinners; hence do not grow despondent or abandon the struggle. In your fight against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood. Moreover, you have forgotten the encouraging words addressed to you as sons:

“My sons, do not disdain the discipline of the Lord
nor lose heart when he reproves you;
For whom the Lord loves, he disciplines;
he scourges every son he receives.”

Endure your trials as the discipline of God, who deals with you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline?

At the time it is administered, all discipline seems a cause for grief and not for joy, but later it brings forth the fruit of peace and justice to those who are trained in its school. So strengthen your drooping hands and your weak knees. Make straight the paths you walk on, that your halting limbs may not be dislocated but healed.  –Letter to the Hebrews 12:1-13

Lenten Reflection, March 23rd

Lenten Reflection, March 22nd

“If the work of our sanctification presents, apparently, the most insurmountable difficulties, it is because we do not know how to form a just idea of it. In reality sanctity can be reduced to one single practice, fidelity to the duties appointed by God. Now this fidelity is equally within each one’s power whether in its active practice, or passive exercise. The active practice of fidelity consists in accomplishing the duties which devolve upon us whether imposed by the general laws of God and of the Church, or by the particular state that we may have embraced. Its passive exercise consists in the loving acceptance of all that God sends us at each moment.”  ― Jean-Pierre de Caussade, Abandonment to Divine Providence

Lenten Reflection, March 22nd

Lenten Reflection, March 21st

“External penance includes particularly the acceptance from God in a spirit of resignation and trust of all life’s sorrows and hardships and of everything that involves inconvenience and annoyance in the conscientious performance of the obligations of our daily life and work and the practice of Christian virtue. Penance of this kind is in fact inescapable. Yet it serves not only to win God’s mercy and forgiveness for our sins… but also sweetens, one might almost say, the bitterness of this mortal life of ours with the promise of its heavenly reward. For ‘the sufferings of the present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory to come that will be revealed in us.'”  
~Pope John the XXIII  in his Encyclical  Paenitentiam Agere
Lenten Reflection, March 21st

Lenten Reflection, March 20th

“With every day that passes, I grow more and more convinced how ugly the world is, of how much suffering there is, and, unfortunately, of how it is the good who suffer the most. Meanwhile, we who have been given so many of God’s blessings have repaid Him poorly. This is an awful reality that racks my brain; while I’m studying, every so often I ask myself: will I continue on the right path? Will I have the strength to persevere all the way? In the face of this pang of doubt, the faith given to me in Baptism reassures me of this: by yourself, you will accomplish nothing, but if you place God at the center of all your actions, then you will reach the goal.” ~Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati

Lenten Reflection, March 20th

Lenten Reflection, March 19th

There is a general rule concerning all special graces granted to any human being. Whenever the divine favor chooses someone to receive a special grace, or to accept a lofty vocation, God adorns the person chosen with all the gifts of the Spirit needed to fulfill the task at hand.

This general rule is especially verified in the case of Saint Joseph, the foster-father of our Lord and the husband of the Queen of our world, enthroned above the angels.

Obviously, Christ does not now deny to Joseph that intimacy, reverence and very high honor which he gave him on earth, as a son to his father. Rather we must say that in heaven Christ completes and perfects all that he gave at Nazareth.  – St. Bernadine of Siena

 

Lenten Reflection, March 19th

Lenten Reflection, March 18th

“But now the necessity of habit is sweet to me, and against this sweetness must I fight, lest I be enthralled by it. Thus I carry on a daily war by fasting, constantly bringing my body into subjection…And while health is the reason for our eating and drinking, yet a perilous delight joins itself to them as a handmaid; and indeed, she tries to take precedence in order that I may want to do for her sake what I say I want to do for health’s sake….These temptations I daily endeavor to resist and I summon Thy right hand to my help and cast my perplexities onto Thee.”  -St. Augustine

Lenten Reflection, March 18th