Sunday, December 30, 2012


We had left somehow this blog in order to perform an experiment in technology, in withdrawing from technology, and I wanted to say some things regarding the experiment for us.

We had arrived to Barcelona city three weeks ago, to visit family, and we were coming from rural, non technologic American Christian society...the cultural shock was expected.

The things that we were more obviously shocked were the polluted air, (children had a hard time breathing the first days, with so many people smoking in the sidewalks), the noise ( we could not hear each other talking in the street), the amount of people, (it takes effort not to bump with people continuously), the dress and bombarding media which seemed to come out of a XX rated movie. We had been sensitized back to a modest way of dressings and here in the city the fashions dictate such an immodest apparel, well, the women go with tights and short jackets in the street, nothing else! but for them this is the normal thing, the regular outfit, they have been sensitized ( or better said desensitized) to an opposite order of things. Instead of concealing your forms, they emphasize them appealing to the sexual appetite. The advertisements full blown in the streets are also as direct and crude.

The bad thing for me is that people are not aware of this, we are not aware how the environment indoctrinates our thinking, I am sure if I had to stay in the city, i would fall into the same desensitizing program, unless I was in daily contact with people that thought differently. And that is exactly the clue, I asked around, where are the christian people here?

 I found the Opus Day people, very nice group of people following the doctrines of the church and God, they believe in a total immersion in the world, working in the world but not of do they do it? Constant teaching as their founder Josep Maria Escriva never tired of saying, a constant teaching of the scriptures, daily Mass, weekly seminars or meetings,  monthly conferences, etc...

I asked also about a more poorer version of Christians and we found  group that decided 25 years ago to share their belongings and money, they are still there, in the city, living in the same apartment complex and tending each one to its job out in the city with the love of God, how do they do it? daily meditations together on the scriptures, day and night, and singing, weekly gathering with a meal.

Now I am up to learn about the Order of the Brotherhood of the Lamb, yet I am pretty sure the way they face the world in the city is too with daily food, daily Mass, daily reinforcement or teachings agains the teachings of the world, unless you are indoctrinated in God´s ways, you are being indoctrinated in the world´s ways.

Here in the city my mom has a computer at home, I have been using it as needed, and one day my daughter told me: ¨mom, i just had a dream, somebody was telling me in the dream how you cannot do both things at a time, either you are cooking, grading our homework and making family life, or you are in the computer.¨

I think the dream was right, I cannot do both, so that is why we will keep our computer time when we go to the library, and we will have a computer free home.

 On the other hand, I think like people could be brought out of the worldly ways with this media, the world´s own media, just like in the movie Matrix, the real people sought to go to the artificial world to bring out a choice, to bring the people that were called out, just the same way we decided we would use the computer to say there is another way of living, to say there is a choice.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Child Training

Somebody asked us to compile some thoughts on child training. My husband and I laughed at the prospect: How can We give any kind of counsel in that matter, if we are so in need of advice ourselves? Yet when we compared with other families we could see we had indeed walk some part of the path. The next week God showered us with more resources and books on child training, and we decided to make an attempt to compile what we are learning.

Lord, give me grace when children’s hands

Are busy with manifold demands

Give me gentle, smiling eyes;

Keep my lips from sharp replies.

Lord, give me patience; quell my sigh

When one again begins to cry

Though I am falling far behind

Give me grace to still be kind

Lord, give a smile and self-command

When still a child can’t understand.

Give a love that’s true and strong;

Drop into my heart a song.

May weary days and children’s noise

Not blind my eyes to fleeting joys.

So tonight at day’s decline,

May lovely memories brightly shine.


Before a man is born of the Spirit, he goes through the world asking this question:” What can I get out of this or that situation?”. After a man is born of the Spirit the question is thus changed:”What is the will of God, what God wants me to do in this or that situation.”


The ideal marriage is where two lives blend according to God’s order with the husband as the head and the wife at his side in love. Establishing a Christian home is the foundations of Child Training:

Ephesians 5:25 “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the Church and gave himself up for her”

Colossians 3:18 “Wives, be subject to your husbands, as it is written in the Lord”

1Peter 3:7 “Husbands, in the same way, show consideration for your wives in your life together paying honor  to the woman as the weaker sex since they too are also heirs of gracious gift of life-so that nothing may hinder your prayers”

Failures in marriage can be due to:

 a-Marriage is not begun in the Lord

Other reasons for marriage apart from God’s  will be an obstacle and should be overcome ASAP. These could be reasons from the flesh, greed or intellectual. ( The more learned the more the danger of being deceived)

b-Husband does not take his rightful place of leadership

Just like the example of Jacob and Esau, some men do not take heed of the command of leadership in their homes and let themselves be unthroned of the crown that is of birthright.

c-Wife is not submissive to her husband

If we know God, we know he is sovereign to all, also over our husband. Any sign of rebelliousness to our husband will be imitated by the children as rebellion to authority. Some signs of rebelliousness are very subtle, like criticizing our husband in a self-pitying manner, a wife should share her troubles with others only with her husband’s blessings in a way that is honoring to God and husband both, if not she may be “showing her slip” in a metaphorical way.

d- Both or one partner is selfish

It is in giving that we find JOY:

J: Jesus first

O: Others after

Y: You last

e-Both or one grew up in unhappy homes

Destructive patterns are set in us, yet in God we are also rescued from the bondage of the past.

f-Third person interferes

The best friend for a wife is rightfully her husband, when a third person comes into place, man or woman, the natural order of things is changed with many dangers creeping into the relationship. Our friends should encourage the bond that we have with our spouses and not hinder it.


a- Rhythm

When the home is built in rhythmical patterns, the children rest in comfort, they know what comes next as a matter of fact. (“ we clean the dishes after eating, etc…) it is no conducive to rhythm to go out too much, to be away from a home centered hearth. As parents, being contented in the sameness passing of days and seasons is a show of strength. A feeble family may need  more entertainment in their lives at the cost of peaceful home-centered life.

Psalm 23 “ The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quite waters, He restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for you are with me; your rod and staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”


When the parent is present, and the thoughts are clear, this permeates the environment. It is no good to be day-dreaming, reading your own book, computer, TV, radio, phone,  etc….Attentiveness to the task at hand is one of the main vehicles of Love. Singing Hymns and prayer songs helps in bringing your own mind to be renewed. Silence is also on the pedestal of Love, by being silent we learn to listen to the Spirit instead of being busybodies letting our tongues ride wild.

Romans 12:2 “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind”

1Timothy 5:13 “And besides they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house, and not only idle but also gossips and busybodies, saying things which they ought not”


A child needs to be taught to surrender his own will for the sake of the whole. This is taught by example ( how we ourselves are willing to surrender) and by reproof. Sometimes the discipline action can start as soon as 6 to 10 months, and it may involve different  things. The spanking is used for small children, a paddle with the hand can be useful; for  older a small stick, and for even older the spanking is turned into an emotional  one, by making the child aware of his fault and making him feel ashamed of it. Sometimes we read or make up a story that hits home, or perhaps we make them put their selves into the other to see the fault. As the child turns to be a grown up, the discipline usually takes the shape of the Spirit.

The discipline should be done without anger and in a state of sorrow but in willfull obedience to God’s directives:

Prov 12:1 “ Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge. But he who hates correction is stupid”

Prov 22:15 “Foolishness is bound in the heart of the child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him”

Prov 13:24 He that spares his rod hates his son; but he that loves him is diligent to discipline him”

Prov 23:13, 14 “Withhold not correction form the child, for if you beat him with the rod, he shall not die. You shall beat him with the rod, and shall deliver his soul from hell”

Prov 19:25 “ The rod and reproof give wisdom: But a child left to himself brings his mother to shame”

Prov 19:18 “Chasten your son while there is hope, and set not your heart on his destruction”

Prov 29:17 “Correct your son, and he shall give you rest; yes he shall give delight unto your soul”

Hebrews 12:6,7 “For whom the Lord loves he chastens, and scourges every son whom he receives. If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons”

Col 3:21 “Fathers, provoke not your children, lest they be discouraged”


Unless we design our work to be child-included, the training will be unsuccessful at the end. Children thrive when they feel they are needed for the surviving of the family, just like we thrive when we know God needs us to fulfill tasks he has layered upon us. “Idle hands are the devil’s tools”

When we joyfully work overcoming our comfort and fleshly nature, we learn and teach to live for God instead of for ourselves. Singing as we work, sometimes for hours at a time is very appropriate for our minds, as well as sharing with others the load of work by keeping company and godly conversation. Children that grow up in setting as this, learn early on, in a very practical manner, that the best way of life is to live for others.

Galatians 5:16-18 “ So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature.They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law”



The Fruits of Her hands (Wilson)

Child Training (Stoll)

Thursday, July 26, 2012

A labor of Love

I just read "The restoration of Christian Culture" by John Senior, a radical book from the point of view of contemporary thought, yet a very down to earth and practical book from the point of view of reality.

This is of course my opinion, based on my own expreince of the matter, but anyone who wishes to experience this could do so taking the same steps, and thus it becomes more than just a personal opinion but a matter of scientific approach.

The book states repeated times the exhortation to "smash the television set", and for that also the radio, and media in general and extensively, even computers, etc... being these technological advantages impediment for the healthy living of a christian culture.

Last week while pondering in these things, a thought suddenly came, in the way you usually have when two concepts otherwise separated link and you say !Aha!, as in solving a riddle. Well the two concepts also streamed forward and backward with a series of other thoughts, is just difficult to explain, yet it became clearer to me that technology can cripple human beings in one generation. Because I am immersed in modern society, I was not aware so strongly about the implications, yet in seeing the Amish culture and my own side by side, the gap between them helped in seeing the danger we are faced with, the danger we are actually so involved with.

Some of my friends have difficulty relating with other human beings in a healthy way, they learn early on to expect a fast response from the environment to satisfy their needs, which in turn are selfish, and seek mainly pleasure. I am also in this difficulty, and to try to get away from it I decided to do some things as my own experiment:

1st- to withdraw from any technological communication as much as I am able to do.(no TV, no radio, no computer, no telephone except necessary)
2nd- to stay confined at a walking or horse riding distance from home.( even if still my husband owns a car)
3rd-to minimize my expenses to the basics, counting my goal in America to be about $700 a month, including mortgatge.
4th-to spend at least half of the day involved in physical and meaningful tasks, and at least one hour to prayer or contemplation.

I thank all of you that have been a company in these writings and wish me the best in this experiment. I'll come back when I have some results to share.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The time is at hand!

We found in an essay the description of the same impulse in Schiller that we are trying to define in the earlier posts:

“Two impulses are present in human nature that hinder it from achieving perfection when they develop in a one-sided way: the sensual and the rational. If the sensual impulse has the upper hand, a person is conquered by instincts and passions. In the activity illumined by consciousness, a power then mingles, by which this is darkened. Human action becomes the consequence of an inner compulsion. If the rational impulse dominates, a person attempts to suppress instincts and passions, and to commit to an abstract necessity, which is not sustained by any inner warmth. Human beings are subject to compulsion in both cases: in the one their sensuality enslaves the spiritual in them, and in the other, the spiritual enslaves their sensuality. Neither condition gives full freedom to people in the kernel of their being, which lies in the midst between the sensual and the spiritual. Freedom is to be realized only through a harmony of both impulses. Sensuality should not be suppressed but ennobled; instincts and passions should permeate themselves with spirituality, so that they themselves can bring to realization the spiritual power which has entered into them. And reason should take hold of the human soul in such a way that it deprives what is merely instinctive and passionate of its power, so that human beings can fulfill what reason indicates, as if out of natural instinct, and with the strength that passion gives. “When we are passionately attached to someone who is worthy of our contempt, we painfully feel the compulsion of nature. If we have a hostile relationship to someone who compels our respect we painfully feel the compulsion of reason. But when our affection is involved and our respect is won, then both the compulsion of feeling and the compulsion of reason disappear, and we begin to love.” A person who reveals the spiritual quality of reason in sensuality, and the elemental power of passion in his reason, would be a free personality. It is upon the development of free personalities that Schiller wishes to base a harmonious common life in human society.”

I understand this also to be needed for the building of any true community.

In my own experience I can tell of many times where I  lean too heavily on one of the sides, and yet as I grow older instead of the swinging motion being balanced I found myself swinging in more and more extremes, as if when the reason tries too forcefully to suppress passion, then passion gets the upper hand violently and without warning. Or vice-versa, when my passions are at command, all of a sudden an abrupt  action determined by reason breaks the air in coldness. I am reminded of the youthful teens, when emotions would create a mood swing too, here is an old time poem that depicts one of the ends of the pendulum:

Nublada, perdida, llorada sed,

No embebe ya el alma que hastia se vuelve red,

Y a ratos olvida el vacio y cree ser algo. Ser que?

Tumbada al sol de su frio

no le queda cordura ni amigo

para volverse pez.

Clouded, lost, mourned thirst,

The soul does not soak anymore, and tiresome becomes net,

And at times she forgets the emptiness and believes to be something. To be what?

Laying under the sun of its coldness

She has no more sanity nor friends

To become fish again.

I could also see these patterns in other areas, how many times in trying to do what I ought to do, my energies tire, after 6 months or so I am exhausted and I have to discontinue my work  because reason is not strong enough to live! Yet in the other extreme, when I follow life’s wind and guideposts in naïve trust, the impulses do not take wings, their foundation is so sandy!

Most of all I sense it in relationships, when out of duty someone is taking an interest in us, or we do in turn to them, the air fills with tepid smells, whereas when the interest is based on attraction laws the smell is pungy. It is only when the interest we take in one another is pure and keen, then the fragrant aroma of roses is sensed, and we can fill our cups respectively.

I am lately involved in the Amish community nearby, and I have to bow my head to some of their members, they display this middle point in their lives very much, and it is so refreshing to encounter some more people living by this practical application of Christianity.

In fact many of their “traditions” coincide completely with spiritual indications:

-plain color dress, (peach-yellow-green-blue-violet) I would even claim that their way of clothing is more free than our following fads, trends and desires, as long  as freedom is understood as is stated in the above paragraphs.

-Working the land manually, small acreage and small diverse husbandry. (when things get bigger they change in nature, usually to the detriment of  the work of Christ forces )

-No ownership of cars, TV, radios, phones, etc…. to encourage face to face interactions with neighbors. They can use these devices but not own them, just as one plain father said to his son: do you own the car or does it own you?

-Church services in homes, to encourage ensouled buildings.

-Singing  for more than one hour at a time, exercising the harmonization of the individual to the community, the larynx slowly adapting to the tune that is found reverberating in the cupola of sound formed.

-Academic school work starting after 7 years old.

I also found that many other of their customs to be completely in line with my thoughts since I was small:

-Non-resistance. (Love changes the world, war does not)

-Non-conformity. (voting and other political aspects of life are for other people, especially if you want to follow the spiritual path)

-Non-missionaries. (I always thought it strange to raise money for other countries, or to go somewhere else to be a witness, there is so much to be done at home! One Amish comments on Kissinger’ aptitudes in being a peacemaker around the world, but his home was in divorce, if we are not able to be peacemakers at home, the fruits outside the home are not lasting. (“The Amish in their own wordscompiled  by Brad Igou)

Well,  I have been then stretched between the two sides, and the more I walk the more it stretches, I am wondering if the thread that unites them will at some point break, and I will get stuck in one or the other side, or this is just part of the journey.

In the Lord of the Rings allegory, again we found the same characters described above, I am at awe of what Frodo can do, I myself cannot manage an inch of his path, lest I become Saruman or stay in the Shire awaiting the end of the world. I pray for some of his purity in heart, so we can all, taking turns at a time, bring the Ring to the Fire.

We were so fortunate to host a Community Camp at our farm the last week, the priest  held the children and us parents with love and caring ears, and we were able to make some new friends and see that we are much in the same boat;  I am still like Ariadne’s thread, unraveling what it all meant to us and what it may mean for the future. When I go to the garden to weed memories of the camp flow in my eyes, like when we were spraying the silica early in the morning, or when we were gathered around the fire for the special story. One of the songs we learnt is very fun to sing with the children, as the capital letters are sung louder that the rest  and in a three group round, a secret is unveiled.

Hey ho cried the merry DWARFS (pause, pause)

It’s off to the woods we (pause) ARE

We’d like to stay but time is (pause, pause) SHORT


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

We love whom we serve

“We love whom we serve”, is a quote that I found recently again in the book "Fascinating Womanhood". There is a group of mothers that are reading through it and we get together every other Monday to discuss the chapters. Some ideas may be extreme and hard to swallow in our times, but the principles work nonetheless, in learning to love our husbands, and learning to serve in love, not in duty.

I have also been trying to simplify our lives, and in some aspects, simplifying has resulted also in having the homemaking tasks done in the old-fashioned way, from one point of view it would seem that all our moderns gizmos, washing machines, refrigerators, etc….would work for us in making  things easier and simplifying our lives, but I am finding out that it is working just the contrary for us, in the practical homemaking life, it is more simple to do washing by hand.

How can this be so? I am not sure yet, but when we wash our clothes by hand, besides all the other things  that we are doing differently, the focus changes from dutiful task to lovely service. It is in the actual rubbing of the dress, the actual rinsing of the shirt, the hanging with pins in a beautiful manner, that I get to do my job lovingly and not as a chore to be finished as soon as possible.

I think the same law applies to our relationships, when we get attention to them, when we really listen to what the other is saying, when we take time to spend with others, without rushing through it, things disclose in a different manner.

Last Monday I asked my young Amish neighbor what were her plans for the week, she responded that she never knows what may come up! Is true for me too, when in between my planning and organizing I leave space for the unknown to happen, things come to us that are prompted by the Spirit, if only I could notice them all the time, I would be a better servant….

Visit here for ideas for Saint John's eve, a traditional cake with pinenuts and candy-dried fruit, a bonfire to throw old stuff and make ammends to throw away old habits, a special eve to gather herbs, specially medicinal herbs for the whole year.

Friday, May 25, 2012

My family an I have been having some breaking down moments, our computer broke down, by a car running over it! and then our car broke we have been uncommunicated even more from our regular way of life.

It is though a blessing to listen during those moments to what the silence or angels may be telling us, and we have embraced wholeheartedly our new farming life, under the tutellage of our kind Amish neighbors.

We sprayed manure homeophatically, and planted an acre of vegetables, our family garden with corn, potatoes, swiss chard, lettuces, onions, cabagges, beans, cucumbers and finally peppers and tomato plants are also in; the rest we filled with beets to start selling to our local organic cooperative.

It has been very rewarding to wait on the weather and on the business of family and neighbors around, and our nights have been filled with deep sleep as we come to our rooms tired and happy.

The wood cookstove also has brought many delights, as cakes and pies start coming out of it and tasting yummy, Even my husband who knows for years about disastrous culinary productions is amazed that now things can taste so much better. It must be the slow cooking time and the fire.....

Ascension has come and almost gone, we have been singing songs together and one of them has been ringing in my ears continuously during these days, it has African words and they speak about the victory of Good over Evil. It is great to have two groups of people singing at each other, one group does the chorus and the other the verse:

O Nkosi Jesu
Mdale we zinto Zonke
Won Kob Ukufa
Won Kob U Satane

Amen, Amen,
Amen, Amen,
Amen Amen,
Amen Alleluia

Wishing you a very good Pentecost day, as we remember how the Knights of the Grail also came together in such special occasion, to renew their vows and promise anew their resolutions.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Terra Fidei

Our farm has another name, Terra Fidei, which means land of the faith and is the inward name of our home. It wants to represent this striving to cultivate the faith, as we cultivate the land, because is an act of free will -an act nor a noun-, that which faith encompasses. What is to continue becoming perfect in the eyes of God? To follow his will at every moment. This is again an active form, never reaching the goal yet always moving towards it.

Land of the Faith,
the land symbolizes
the landscape of Faith in our hearts,
and it is a reminder
of the need to cultivate the Faith,
to be stewardships
of the Faith in this sense,
to make it flourish in our lives.

The main reason to bring the special needs children to our farm was to try to bring my husband’s job to the fore, he has been teaching in the special ed. department of public school for the last years, and I thought that instead of bringing my own ideas to this new project, I would build up my husband’s skills and talents in the farm. Alas, I do not know if it will work, since he has his own different ideas about the farm as well!!!!

I have been in a continual struggle with this relationship, since the beginning when we met:

“I was talking to God, while listening to my usual Friday night classical music concert in Mallorca, Spain, and finally admitted to God that I had learnt the lesson He was teaching me for the last couple of years. I really did not need any boyfriend to be happy, or anybody to love or be loved by, BUT, I said to God, if you want me to share my life with someone else, just let me know. Well, two seats by my side, there was this guy, who was trying to catch my attention during the whole concert, he finally did start a conversation with me and has been my husband since one week after that day. At first I did not understand, why God sent him to me? 15 years older, looking rather shabby, bold, and from a far-away country….as years went by, some of the reasons were understood, he grew long beautiful blond hair right away, which was a nice surprise!"

Anyway, what I wanted to mean is that many times the relationships that are more difficult are the closer ones, and if you had read my diaries you would see that my two longings in life were God and children. So when God decided to stop giving us children my heart started to ache, how am I suppose to continue in this covenant of marriage? Am I now to turn around and go to find Vocations? As my service to others increased also my disservice to my husband augmented, I could see that also in many others, where the most servicial and kind hearted persons, lived a rather strenuous life at home or were alone. Why is this so? Teachers and ministers will tell you how difficult it is to give in both places, and the tension many times breaks the relationships in the inner courtyard.

It seems so much easy to love the ones that are farther away than your own husband, at least for some of us, and I could see why God had chosen marriage for my life, to stretch my heart in love for God as I struggle to love my husband. Maybe for others God has chosen the ministry life, or any other task, but at the end the ultimate result should be an increase of Love for God. Saint Therese “saw” Christ in every human being, married women are to “see” Christ in their husbands at every moment. Husbands are built up by our admiration of their qualities, they strive to the best we see in them, how we can maintain this admiration? Last week an Amish farmer tilled the soil in our land, and kept my children in the cart while working, it all seemed so right, except it was not my husband tilling the soil! I think when husbands work at home, especially in the land, wifes are more easily prompted to be grateful for their work, to admire them. On the other hand I could remind myself of the great job that my husband is doing by providing for the family, and facing the sometimes cold-cruel world of society for long hours a day.

This Easter time is eye opening for me, as to discern how am I receiving the destiny that God has chosen, am I freely saying yes, am I freely saying no, or am I just unconscious of it, resenting my life?

Today’s Gospel talks about Jesus being the Shepherd of Souls, and I am reminded of the Psalm that has turned into a famous song:

Shepherd me Oh God,
Beyond my wants,
Beyond my fears
From death unto life.
The Lord is my shepherd
I shall not be in want
He lead me to green pastures,
He restores my soul.

May we have the grace to wrestle pride and despair away from our lives continually, and come to rest on Christ and the destiny that comes towards us at every moment.

Story for Easter: The Selfish Giant, Oscar Wilde

Songs for Easter: Love is come again

Thursday, April 19, 2012


We have had a lot of accomplished projects in the last few weeks.

Last year by this time we were publishing my husband's novel: The Missing Spoke, which goes very weel with the theme of Easter and the redemption not from suffering but redemption to suffering, from a christian view. This year we are in the last steps of proof reading a new book, another auto biography, this time of a pastor that lived in the midwest for a while but now is residing in Sweden: A sword in the Wilderness. This book goes well with the theme of Pentecost, as is a witness of the strength of the Holy Spirit through the lives of men.

A Sword in the Wilderness

While we are also establishing the rhythms in our new farm, getting to know our neighbors and the land, we are also looking ahead for the next publishing book, if you have an interesting biography, or you ever wanted to publish your memoires, give us a script, perhaps yours can be the next year publishing project!

The Farm is buzzing with life, we have horses and cows in the pasture fields and the gardens are ready to be tilled. Soon we will open the planting season with potatoes on 24th April, and we are digging strawberry plants for the new beds. Come pick up some if you want to!

Thursday, March 29, 2012


We are finally moving, officially on Saturday. Meanwhile there has been a lot of things coming up, and one of them is about the purpose of the farm. We are leaning towards naming the farm after the archangel Raphael, to ask for his protection and healing medecine. We are envisioning the land that God is giving us to be a place where souls can be strenghtened in God, where families can be lead to Jesus Christ, where the Holy Spirit is directing.

The old barn will house a cow, steer, sheep and chickens in the winter. the newer barn used to be raising 3.000 organic chicken, we want to stay away from such big farm production, yet we do not know what to do with the building.

For a while in our lifes as married people, I tried working in different things, sometimes out of the home, but mostly in the home. Now that this project of the farm  is coming up, I am again asking, what is the purpose of the marriage, and how can we be working together instead of separate and in a sanctifying way? For me the response has come suddenly, unexpected, and has caught me by surprise: Instead of trying to do what i think is best, I need to look up to my husband's strenghts and build him up, be his helpmaid.
Inside of the old barn.

So, he has been working with special needs children in the public school system, and he has a talent for it, he can relate to them in  special way, non threatening at all, that makes the relationship grow and become a healing balm. Yet in the schools children are bound to four walls most of the time, do not have enough time outdoors doing meaningful work, they are continually entertained and have a void of purpose. In the farm, my husband could give them physical work, they could see they are needed, and the farm work could help strengthen their souls, in rhythmic discipline. We are looking into giving this opportunity for once a week during the school year, and also for week-long stays at the farm during summer months.
Prayers and songs before meals will help establish a rhythm and a reminder throughout the day of our dependance on God.

Almost all my farmer friends say that is too difficult to live off of the farm, and that a second income is needed, and just a 10% of the big farms are making money. Yet, as a newcomer of stewarding the land I am full of hope, I trust that God is giving this opportunity to many families like us, to work and pray together, to raise families in His name, to be a witness to the world, and to help as many as we can to come closer to the Faith. Our priest sent us a link yesterday about the TLM and the movement around it, we are privileged that God put us in a place where the devotion for God and His Son is stronger than the currents of the world. may I be a helpmaid for His Plans.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Plain walls

We were overwhelmed at the task of packing last week, but now that is started it seems easier. The only thing we could do in the face of the overwhelming tasks, was to go ahead with one room, one step at a time, and not to see the whole picture. It worked well.

Now it is similiar with the state of our souls: we are following the study on Counsels of Perfection,, and in the chapter of  removing venial sins I see a parallel with the packing of our house, it is good to know what is to come one step ahead, for planning, but not to see the whole scope, because it could be daunting. The reason for to see the next step is to prepare the tools for the battle, it is different to go to the fields with a mounted horse or with bow and arrows, in one you go straight to the enemy, in the other you stay at a distance. Some sins are better defeated by "grabbing the bull by the horns", by having the sword of the Sacraments frequently, others are better defeated by staying at a distance of temptation and sending the arrows of Truth.

We have carried with us a book on the Amish for 10 years, and its pictures have become familiar to us. On entering our new to become house for the first time, we felt at ease, at home, and after looking into many other farms thereafter we kept the same feeling about our first showing. Friends, banks and family have doubted our choice, and sometimes in the back of my mind I also hear the same doubts, yet it is in the plain walls, in the rough dry walls, in the plain floor and empty floorplan that my heart  finds refuge.

I opened the Amish book again today, to see the pictures with my children, and there it was, one house with the same appearance, a house that calls for daily work, a house that calls for holiness. I find myself in clutter and too many things around the house and on my walls, that instead of helping in the job of homemaking, they hinder work and make me lazy, complacent.

May the new house keep its new stewards in peace and work, in rough, plain, and lovely walls.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Move to the farm

We are probably moving to our farm on March, for this reason I will concentrate in packing, moving and settling in for the next weeks.

I hope meanwhile you have a good start of spring, Blessings!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Rule of Life

I have been looking into the rules of life for the lay people in the Benedictine Order and the Carmelite Order. Even though both seem very appropiate for family life concerning the path of sanctification I choose the motto " Love as God loves you" of the Carmelites.

The priest in our local parish, suggested to do some list of our main goals, our core beliefs, the tenets with which we strive to surround our life, and to find a spiritual director to held us accountable during this upcoming season of Lent. In regards of that I compiled some of my aspirations, now I have to find the spiritual director. I am praying to God that he will lead us to our new homestead, and that he will also lead us to Him.

Rule of Life February 9th 2012
To observe the relationship with God as a supremacy in my life and let the Love of the Father pour out to my relationships, starting with my husband, relatives, friends and family. Eucharist and Confession attended regularly, if possible daily.
To follow Jesus in his teachings,  studying of the scriptures and other materials. Bible study every Sunday, study group on relationships Tuesdays.
To allow the Holy Spirit to work in my life. Observe prayers at night ( family rosary, individual meditation, examination of conscience, summary of day events) 30 minutes, at wake time (devotion to God, silence) 30 minutes, at noon time, ( prayers, hymns, recollection) 30 minutes.

Some indications of the Carmelite order Rule of Life
5. The love of God, poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, (5) is the fire that Christ came to bring to the earth and wishes to be blazing. (6) To enter into and remain in that love given by the Father is the aim of the Christian pilgrimage as told in the Gospel, that authentic rule of Christian life. The law of the Gospel is that we love God, with all our strength, (7) and our neighbor as Christ loved us. (8)
6. In this context an authentic Christian life implies a mysticism based on the scriptural understanding of that life, especially as understood by Saint Paul. (9) At its most profound level this life consists in a personal love of God,:
Christ is its first and absolutely fundamental mainstay and, in him, the Father in the Holy Spirit. This commitment is the arrival and departure point for the life of the Christian who wishes to conform to Christ, especially in our days that are not always open to the values of the spirit and of the Gospel. On the other hand, not understanding the Christian life as an ever more intimate union with the Lord would be to lose its true meaning.
7. By baptism we become part of the huge assembly of brethren that is the Church; that is, we are united to the Mystical Body of Christ as real members. (10) All are called to form one fraternal community; (11) this is possible if, although by nature weak and limited because of their wretchedness, they allow themselves to be guided by divine grace and they do not reject God and their brethren through sinfulness.
8. This universal calling becomes a reality in the baptized who are united through faith and the Eucharist. (12) The basic mystery of the Church is the fact that it is essentially a community of brethren who, in a relationship of mutual love, discover that they are members of the one family. (13) This unity, formed and animated by Christ and his Holy Spirit, (14) demands a continual and loving active cooperation, love being the fundamental law Christ has given to the members of his Mystical Body.
9. Human weakness hinders the practice of fraternal love, but that renunciation and interior detachment required by Christ in the Sermon on the Mount help Christians to reach the goal of total availability, (15) and to overcome the three major obstacles identified by Saint John as the sensual body, the lustful eye and pride in possessions. (16)
13. There cannot be conflict between temporal well-being and the realization of God's Kingdom, since both the material and spiritual orders derive from God; but the danger of conflict can arise from the bad use we make of our knowledge of the temporal sphere. The Christian should use the findings of science to bring about a spiritual and material betterment of human life. (23)
18. What the Tertiary expresses by one's Profession is none other than an intensified renewal of one's baptismal promise to love God above all else and to renounce Satan with all his works and pomps; the difference in this act of love lies in the means the Tertiary uses to reach this goal. The fundamental Christian law that pledges a person to love God and all others with all one's strength, demands of everyone the constant affirmation of the primacy of God, (29) the rejection of any possibility of serving two masters (30) and the love of others above and beyond all selfishness (31).
19. The chastity and obedience of the Tertiary, which also recall the deep sense of poverty, have meaning in the areas of economic well-being, of sexuality, and the imperative not to serve false gods: (32) Christian holiness is love of God and others without any consideration of self. By virtue of the vow of obedience Tertiaries must obey the superiors of the Order and the Group's Spiritual Assistant in all that they are asked to do, according to the Rule, for their own spiritual life. They are bound to observe the vow of chastity according to the duties of their state in life.
21. The entire Carmelite family, in its task of living out its consecration to Christ, (34) seeks to live in the presence of the living and true God who, in the person of Christ, lives in our midst; (35) it is a family that seeks divine intimacy.
25. Lay Carmelites, imbued with the spirit of the Order, try to live its charism in a silent listening to the Word, making their whole life a prayer by allowing themselves to be caught up by the Spirit for the wonderful works that God accomplishes and which require their commitment and worthwhile contribution.
a) The Sacraments, especially the Eucharist, are the life of Christ spread among believers, enabling them to be united to him. (40) To take part in the Sacrifice of the Altar, (41) daily if possible, provides that necessary lifeline with Christ.
b) The Liturgy of the Hours, (42) at least morning Lauds, Vespers and Compline, are the ecclesial expression of their meetings with God. Different places and circumstances may point to the necessity of other forms of liturgical prayer.
26. The spiritual life is not devoted to the liturgy only. Although called to prayer in common, the Christian is still bound to enter into his or her room and pray to the Father in secret; (43) indeed, according to the teaching of Christ, (44) supported by the Apostle, (45) the Christian is bound to pray unceasingly. (46)
34. They will see and be able to show how temporal activity and material occupations are a share in the creative and transforming work of the Father, (56) and that it is a true service to others, which helps bring about human progress. (57)

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Saint Bridgid

Tomorrow Wednesday is Saint Bridgid, so I decided to publish this post in advance.

I have looked at the story of the saint and I will make up a story of the childhood of Saint Bridgid, telling her how father envisioned her sanctity in a vision, how when she was little she was so generous that gave all her mother's butter to the poor one day, and afterwards the butter appeared again, and also how desiring to be consecrated to God and not to marry, though she had many suitors because of her beauty, she asked God for an infirmity and her wish was granted, with an eye that become swollen right away. Some years after at the ceremony of her consecration, her eye became right again and she was as beautiful, pure and radiant as she had been before.

This is a viedo of the gaelic song Ode to Bridgid:

Ode to Bridgid

Gabhaim molta Brighde, Iníon í le hÉireann,
Iníon le gach tír í, molaiimís go léir í
Lóchrann geal na Laighneach, soils’ ar feadh na tire,
Ceann ar óigheacht Éireann, ceann na mban ar mine
Tig an geimhreadh dian dubh, gearra lena géire,
Ach ar lá le Brighde, gar duinn Earrach Éireann , molaiimís go léir í.

I sing loudly the praises of Bridget, she it is who is a daughter not just of Ireland, but of all the countries of the world.
A shining lantern of Lenster, a flame throughout the land, leader of the women of Ireland, one of the finest women ever.
The hard dark winter comes, short and sharp, but once Bridget’s day appears, Ireland’s Spring is not far behind and in all the countries of the world.

anonymous Irish Gaelic song, 1900
Far above enthroned in glory
Sweetest saint of Erin's isle
See thy children kneel before thee,
Turn on us a mother's smile
Sweet St Brigid, Erin's children
Far and near on land and sea
Mid the world and in the cloister
Fondly turn with love to thee
Sweet St Brigid soothe the mourner
Shield the weary tempted soul
Sweet St Brigid guide thy children
To their bright and happy home.

St. Brigids Oaten Bread
1 cup flour, 1 tablespoon sugar, 3/4 teaspoons baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon salt., 3 tablespoons butter in small pieces, 3/4 cup uncooked oatmeal flakes. 1 egg, 1/2 cup buttermilk
1.heat oven to 425 degrees. 2. grease baking sheet. 3.combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in bowl and mix. 4.Add butter bits and cut in with knife until mixture is crumbly. 5.add oats and toss to combine. other bowl beat egg with buttermilk. 7.make a well in the dry ingredients. Pour in the egg mixture and mix with a fork until crumbs hold together. Make dough into ball and transfer to floured surface. Knead 20-25 times. Add flour if sticky.
8.pat dough into 8-inch round and transfer to baking sheet. 9.score a deep cross into the bread but do not cut it through 10.bake 15-20 minutes till brown.

Thursday, January 26, 2012


We are going tomorrow to see two farm houses, for us to live when our town house sells, I am looking forward to seeing them and to see if they are a possibility for our family.

Mr. Apple's Family by Jean McDevitt
It has been a long time that I am thinking about a farm, and in the past some comments of people that know me have detered me to keep pursuing it. They would say I am not that kind a girl to be farming, I would miss the socialization of being in town, i am not cut up for the job, etc.....but suddenly it occurred to me that this is not the first time this happens, people who love me also doubted I would be doing good in studying a college degree in science, or marrying and having a family, and yet, did I listen to them then? No, I studied Organic Chemistry, and I married and had a family, God's willing, is his voice that I should listen to, and not the doubts or molds of the world. So this time i am confident about this step and to do our best in moving to the country.

Last weekend, our town parish was blessed with the visit of somebody very special Monsignor McGarty, I did not know about his position or rank, but his ways were so wise and bold in delivering the message, that no matter who he had been in social status, his uniquennes and value shone right through the congregation. He spoke about Nineveh and its wicked ways, and we were reflected in our little town, and our unrepented ways. He spoke about deliverance and of the call of Jonah, and we felt the call of God to repent, the big distance between our lifes and the life that God wants for us. This is the movement that my soul took in last Sunday, and it is the movement that hopefully would occur before every Mass, so to produce our sincere offerings to the altar.

Monsignor Mc.Garty ended with a verse of Saint Bernard, which I was very impressed with. I am trying to find it so I can copy it below. He talked about prayer and the effect of it in our lives, he told us about the nuns in Saint Joseph, how now that they are retired they have more time to pray! and how this life of prayer, not asking for things, but of communion with God, has changed them into beautiful creatures, that one longs to be around to.

Mr. Apple's Family by Jean McDevitt

I know that my heart is in conflict, some of the teachings I am following are forbidden in the Catholic Church for being away from spiritual revelation of God, yet how can I repent if I do not see the lies behind them, I just see the Truth in them? I ask for intercessory prayers, that Truth would be revealed to me and the Holy Spirit would lead me to repentance or in the other hand that my eyes would cease to be blind and that I will be granted  courage to keep holding these seemingly opposing views.