Bookmarks, Bookmarks Everywhere!

I’m excited to announce that I’ve re-activated my Etsy shop! I love putting together printables and paper crafts. It is a creative outlet for me and I find it relaxing.

My focus the last couple of days have been creating gift tags and printable bookmarks. If you have spent any time here at Simple Catholic Living, you know that I love to read and I love books. Well, I love bookmarks just as much. 🙂 I collect them actually. (Even the wedding favor for my husband and my wedding was a bookmark!)

Here’s a peek at the gift tags and bookmarks I made yesterday:

blue and yellow gift tags

Blue and yellow gift tags

Corner flower gift tags

Corner flower gift tags

faith can move mountains

“Faith can move mountains” bookmarks

scripture bookmarks

various scripture bookmarks

Aren’t they cute? I will be making more and adding them to my shop sometime today. My plan is to create/add more printables weekly to my shop, as time permits. They won’t just be bookmarks or gift tags, either. I plan to add other paper products such as origami, notebooks, stationary, and other printables as time goes on, so check out my shop regularly (or follow me on Pinterest, where I will be adding pictures of new paper goodies as I make them).

By the way, if you are an email subscriber to Simple Catholic Living, check your inbox later on today for a special discount code to get  20% off anything in the shop. If you aren’t an email subscriber yet, fill out the box on the side bar with your name and email address and the discount code will be waiting for you when you confirm your subscription. 🙂

Weekly Goals

Set Goals

I am happy to report that I had a very productive week! I crossed almost everything on the list and then some. I love weeks like these. 🙂 Okay, here’s how it looked:

1. Continue reading  the gospel of Luke five minutes per day.

2. Pray the rosary each day with Andrew.

3. Write for at least 5 minutes (of fiction) each day.

4. Finish cover for e-book  on prayer and get it published on website.

(It’s done! The eBook is called The Busy Woman’s Guide to Making Time for Prayer and you can snag your copy here!)

5. Continue participating in the Clutter Busting Challenge. (I kept forgetting to post what I got rid of, but I did clear out a bunch of stuff every day. I am going to continue getting rid of stuff as I pack, too.)

6. Continue website changes (Complete?? Maybe). (Not finished, obviously. It is going to take a while, I think; however, I did get some “behind the scenes” changes that I needed done.

7. Continue packing for our up-coming move.

Here’s what’s up for this coming week:

1. Continue reading  the gospel of Luke five minutes per day.

2. Pray the rosary each day.

3. Write for at least 5 minutes (of fiction) each day.

4. Finish reading Candles in the Dark and write review. Begin reading The Divine Family.

5. Begin new  challenge over at Money Saving Mom.

6. Continue website changes.

7. Continue packing for our up-coming move.

8. Get at least 8 hours sleep and rise at 6am.

What are your plans for this week? Let us know in the comments or head over to Money Saving Mom and share them with us!

————-

(Post includes affiliate links, see my disclosure policy for more information.)

7 Quick Takes: Scripture and the Eucharist Edition

Bible Heart

In yesterday’s Theological Thursday post I talked about the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. In today’s 7 Quick Takes I want to share just a few Scripture readings about the Eucharist for you to pray over.

1. Psalm 110:4 (Foreshadowing the Eucharist)

2. Exodus 29:38-39 (Foreshadowing the Eucharist)

3. John 6:22-69 (“Bread of Life Discourse”)

4. Matthew 26:26-30 (The Last Supper)

5. 1 Corinthians 10:16 (Is not the cup we share…)

6. Acts 2:42 (They devoted themselves…to the breaking of the bread…)

7. Hebrews 12:22-24 (Jesus and mediator)

For more scripture verses related to the Eucharist, I highly recommend ScriptureCatholic. It has done an amazing job laying out and explaining all the various scriptures that foreshadow the Eucharist, the institution of the Eucharist and the relation between the Cross and the Eucharist. Under the long list of scripture verses there are also a ton of quotes and explanations from Tradition and Church Fathers that are worth reading and praying over, too.

Also, catholicbible101 also has a page dedicated to explaining the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist that you can check out.

—————

Tweetables: (Just click link to tweet)

Scripture and the Eucharist

7 QT: Scripture and the Eucharist Edition

photo credit: Justin Lowery via photopin cc

7 Quick Takes Image

Why Honoring the Lord’s Day Each Sunday is Important

For a long time now, I have felt called to make a greater effort in honoring the Lord’s day. All of us are busy, I’m no exception. School (homeschooling or not), work, and obligations crowd our days and often our evenings. We make the effort to pray, to keep our hearts and minds for God, but it’s not always easy. Well, it’s not easy for me at least.

Image by Icb (2015) via Pixabay, CCO Public domain

Image by Icb (2015) via Pixabay, CCO Public domain

As I was praying about this,  I was reminded of the three months I spent in France when I was discerning a religious vocation. One of the things that struck me the first few weeks I was there was that almost everything shut down on Sundays. The churches were open, of course; but, aside from an occasional grocery store everything was closed (except for hospitals, the police, etc.).

As I reflected upon that custom in France, it wasn’t the act itself I was impressed with; but the meaning behind the custom. It was a reminder that Sundays are important. Remembering God, dedicating a day to Him is important. God IS important. Honoring the Lord’s Day IS important.

Scriptural Reasons:

Honoring the Lord’s day is important because God Himself said so. 🙂 Here are a few scriptures to reflect upon in regards to the Lord’s BibleDay. There are several more so I encourage you to do your own scriptural study on the meaning of the Lord’s Day.

Exodus 20:8-11 “Remember to keep holy the sabbath day. Six days you may labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord, your God. No work may be done then either by you, or your son or daughter, or your male or female slave, or your beast, or by the alien who lives with you. In six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the seventh day He rested. That is why the Lord has blessed the sabbath day and made it holy. ”

Exodus 31:15 “Six days there for doing work, but the seventh is the sabbath of complete rest, sacred to the Lord.”

Acts 20:7 “On the first day of the week, when we gathered to to break bread…”

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

You can find what the church teaches about the Lord’s day in the Catechism in numbers 2168-2195, which you can read here. I will just quote the “In Brief” that comes at the end of each chapter of the Catechism:

2189 “Observe the sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Deut 5:12). “The seventh day is a sabbath of solemn rest, holy to the Lord” (Ex 31:15).

2190 The sabbath, which represented the completion of the first creation, has been replaced by Sunday which recalls the new creation inaugurated by the Resurrection of Christ.

 2191 The Church celebrates the day of Christ’s Resurrection on the “eighth day,” Sunday, which is rightly called the Lord’s Day (cf. SC 106).

 2192 “Sunday… is to be observed as the foremost holy day of obligation in the universal Church” (CIC, can. 1246 § 1). “On Sundays and other holy days of obligation the faithful are bound to participate in the Mass” (CIC, can. 1247).

2193 “On Sundays and other holy days of obligation the faithful are bound… to abstain from those labors and business concerns which impede the worship to be rendered to God, the joy which is proper to the Lord’s Day, or the proper relaxation of mind and body” (CIC, can. 1247).

2194 The institution of Sunday helps all “to be allowed sufficient rest and leisure to cultivate their familial, cultural, social, and religious lives” (GS 67 § 3).

 2195 Every Christian should avoid making unnecessary demands on others that would hinder them from observing the Lord’s Day.

Other Reasons:

Praise
Now that we have laid the foundation of why the Lord’s Day is important; I want to mention a few other reasons celebrating the Lord’s Day is important.

It’s a “mini Easter”. Sundays are a reminder of Jesus’ victory over death and our re-birth. They are a reminder of the first Easter and although they aren’t quite as big as the “official” Easter we celebrate, they are no less a day to remember that great victory won by Christ.

 It’s a day of rest. Well, it’s supposed to be! How many of spend our Sundays doing errands, cleaning, or car pooling to sports?! But the Lord has given us a day of rest because He knows we need it! We need a day to recharge our mental and physical batteries, so we can do the work He has called us.

It’s a day to give thanks and glory to God. Again, the Lord knows we are busy so He wants us to spend one day remembering HIM. It is a reminder that He is in charge. That He is God. That He loves us and wants us to grow in our relationship with Him. He doesn’t need our thanks and praise, but WE need to give Him the glory that is His. Praising HIM lifts US up, renews our spirits and helps us grow in our love for Him.

It is a day to grow in Charity. Honoring the Lord’s day helps us open our hearts and eyes to others around us, so that that we can love them with Christ’s love. Sundays are a good day to reach out to those who need us.

Tomorrow I’ll offer some things you can do to honor the Lord’s Day.

***********

Tweetable: Why Honoring the Lord’s Day Each Sunday is Important

(Scripture verses come from the Saint Joseph Personal size edition of the New American bible, Catholic Book Publishing Co., New York 1970, 1986)

You are Precious (My First Video)

I posted my first video to YouTube recently. It is a little encouragement from Isaiah 43: 1-4. I pray that this little video touches your heart.

(P. S. I look so serious, don”t I! I didn’t mean to, but I was nervous doing my first live video. I was going to re-do it; but, I had already done the video several times so I went ahead and left it as is. 🙂 Hopefully the videos will get better in time.)

Here are the verses written out, in case you didn’t understand my reading of the passage. Again, It is from Isaiah 43: 1-4. I read from the New American Bible, Personal Edition:

“Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name: you are mine. When you pass through the water, I will be with you; in the rivers you shall not drown. When you walk through fire, you shall not be burned; the flames shall not consume you. For I am the Lord, your God, the holy One of Israel, you savior. I give Egypt as your ransom, Ethiopia and Seba in return for you. Because you are precious in my eyes and glorious, and because I love you.”

Prayer for Educators and Students

Monday is the memorial of Saint John Bosco, who was a great friend and defender of the youth and an outstanding educator. You can watch a short Youtube video that I found about his life here. (WP won’t let me embed the video for some reason. 🙁 )

In his honor, I want to dedicate this weekend to praying for all our educators and students.

Educators have a big responsibility and will have to account for their service before God and I thank God for the many wonderful educators and teachers who work hard at teaching our children. But, then when I read of all the things that go on in schools today, such as pushing the homosexual and birth control and other liberal agendas, guns and shootings, and everything else, it can be disheartening.

Students have a responsibility, too, of course. They also need to be encouraged to learn, to overcome whatever circumstances or difficulties they are in, and need to be in an environment that is conducive to learning. They have to deal with all sorts of bullying, peer pressure, and other issues that were not so prominent when many of us were growing up.

So, let’s pray together for our primary, secondary and university teachers and students. Also, let’s not leave out those who are homeschooling. As I’m learning very quickly, that’s not an easy job either – for the mom or dad doing the teaching or the children!

“Eternal God,
Bless all schools, colleges, and universities, that they may be lively centers for sound learning,
new discovery, and the pursuit of wisdom; and grant that those who teach and those who learn
may find you to be the source of all truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.”

(This prayer was found, and more prayers can be located, at churchyear.net.)

(Linked to Fearless Friday and the Kennedy Adventures!)

The Holy Name of Jesus: Saints and Scripture Sunday

“Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, answered them, ‘Leaders of the people and elders: If we are being examined today about a good deed done to a cripple, namely, by what means he was saved, then all of you and all the people of Israel should know that it was in the name of Jesus Christ the Nazorean whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead; in His name this man stands before you healed. He is ‘the stone rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone.’ There is no salvation through anyone else, nor is there any other name under heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved.” Acts 4:8-12

Traditionally in the Catholic Church, January is dedicated to the Holy Name of Jesus. The feast has been celebrated in the church since the 15th century on a local level and was extended to the whole church in 1721. The feast of the Holy name of Jesus is a wonderful feast (optional memorial, actually) that is officially celebrated on January 3rd. The feast is overlooked, however, due to all the other celebrations of the Christmas season, which is why I am mentioning it now. 🙂 .

Here are some resources about and devotions for the Holy Name of Jesus for the month of January:

Catholic Encyclopedia

Wikipedia

Prayers in honor of the Holy Name

Fisheaters

About.com

(Linked to The Kennedy Adventures!)

Saint Martin de Porres

“Blessed are the Poor in Spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:3

This week we will be celebrating two big feasts of the church: All Saint’s Day and All Soul’s Day. However, instead of focusing this post on one of them, I want to mention another (optional) memorial that’s this week: Saint Martin de Porres.

Saint Martin has a special place in my heart. I was first introduced to him when I first got involved with the Little Sisters of the Poor. Then when I became a novice and took my religious name, it was Sister Elizabeth Martin – after Saint Martin de Porres.

He had to endure a lot of injustice in his life. He was the son of a free black woman and a Spanish Grandee; but, his father did not recognize St. Martin as his son until St. Martin was eight. He lived in abject poverty; but, never let the scars of life embitter him. He trusted in the Lord. He gave to those who were poorer than himself. He was goodness and kindness personified.

Saint Martin was also one of those saints that received extraordinary graces and even had the gift of bi-location. How cool is that? 😉 More importantly, he lived a life of prayer and penance, was charitable, and so humble that when he eventually sought entrance into the Dominican order, he didn’t think himself worthy enough to become a brother. He asked to be a lowly lay helper (although the community “made” him become a brother several years later).

We can strive to imitate many of his virtues and ask him to help us to trust in the Lord when we are faced with injustice or difficulties in life. St. Martin de Porres, pray for us!

*********

Tweetable: St. Martin de Porres

Saint Paul of the Cross: Saints and Scripture Sunday

On Wednesday, the Church celebrated the optional of Saint Paul of the cross, founder of the Passionists. If you don’t know much about Saint Paul of the Cross, it would be worth it to get to know him. 🙂 You can read about him here and here.

St. Paul of the Cross had a deep understanding of the sacrifice of Jesus and the love poured off from the Cross. He had great zeal for souls and continually offered (often severe) sacrifices and mortifications for their conversion. Of course, most of us aren’t called to do severe penances or mortifications, but we (speaking mostly for myself) can all probably follow his example and sacrifice ourselves a little more!

Here are a few nuggets of wisdom from Saint Paul of the Cross:

“It is an excellent and holy practice to call to mind and meditate on our Lord’s Passion, since it is by this path that we shall arrive at union with God. In this, the holiest of all schools, true wisdom is learned, for it was there that all the saints became wise.”

“Look upon the face of the Crucified, who invites you to follow Him. He will be a Father, Mother–everything to you.”

“The world lives unmindful of the sufferings of Jesus, which are the miracle of miracles of the Love of God”

(Join us for other Saints and Scripture posts at The Kennedy Adventures!)

Changing Your (My!) Attitude with a Little Gratitude!

Yesterday (Wednesday) wasn’t the best of days. It was bad. It was one of those days where I wished I never got out of bed. Ever have one of those days? I hadn’t slept well the night before, so I woke up tired and cranky and the day went downhill from there:

  • I went into the bathroom and found a HUGE centipede in my tub which snapped me out of my grogginess and completely freaked me out.
  • By 9:30am Andrew had lost all of his stones, and was showing no hope of earning any of them back in the near future (due to several tantrums /  melt-downs, among other issues).
  • Two business appointments didn’t go very well.
  • Everything that could go wrong, did go wrong and it seemed like nothing I did was right.

By the time 2pm rolled around I was ready to crawl back under the covers and never come out. I sent Andrew to his room for quiet time, and curled up on the couch. It was then in the silence of the moment that I realized something. I hadn’t prayed.

I usually make it a point of spending at least ten minutes alone with Lord and His Word everyday. Well, I haven’t made the time to do that this week. It has been a busy week, but that’s really an excuse. I could have taken the time; but, I forgot and I didn’t.

So, while Andrew played in his room, I took up the bible and read this verse (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18):

“Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.”

Um. Yeah. Not doing that so much. Certainly not praying without ceasing. And I certainly wasn’t giving thanks for the day I was having.

I took out my journal and started writing to the Lord. I have a ‘gratitude journal” but it’s been a long time since I’ve written in it. Anyway, I started writing down all the things I was grateful for. I started with Andrew and all the wonderful things about him. Then I went on to other things I was grateful for. I praised and thanked the Lord and by the end was even thanking Him for the terrible day I was having.

It didn’t take very long; but, those few minutes transformed my thinking and my attitude. Did my day get better? No, not really. But I had a changed perspective.

It’s amazing how reminding ourselves of all the things we have to be grateful for each day can impact our attitude! What about you?  What are you thankful for today?