November 28, 2016

Happy Advent.  May we remember that Advent is a time for our spiritual preparation for the coming of Jesus at Christmas.  It is so easy to become involved with many activities and forget that Jesus is already here and waiting to come anew with new graces and blessings if/when we are ready to receive them.  Come, Lord Jesus.

“Gracious God, You are the One who comes to heal and save us, to bring joy and peace.  Help us to see, hear, feel and understand the ways You came to us through the person of Jesus.  Teach us how to live as He did so we might also bring joy and peace to others.  Amen.”

Rita Hacker blesses us with beautiful harp music as the prelude to Mass each Sunday of Advent…a prayerful prelude to the Liturgy.  Thanks, Rita.

On Thanksgiving, they served about 400+ people at the Community Thanksgiving Dinner at the High School.  It is a wonderful opportunity for people to celebrate with family and friends.  The mashed potatoes (five 5-gallon pails) at the meal were grown in our garden and peeled by about half a dozen Sisters last Tuesday.

On Thursday we will be hosting the annual Ministerial Christmas Luncheon.  We are expecting about 35 guests.  I’d like to extend my thanks to these special people who minister to the spiritual needs of the people in their care.  We need you.

Sister Julien carved the turkey for our Sister’s Thanksgiving dinner.

The first Thursday of every month we have Taize prayer in Chapel from 6 to 7 p.m. 
What Taize prayer is, is an hour of meditative prayers and song with Scripture readings that fit the Liturgical Season—so, Advent for this month.

Next Sunday, December 4th, is the Community Chorale Christmas Concert at 2:00 p.m. in our Sacred Heart Chapel with a reception afterwards.  Come enjoy wonderful music and goodies, too.  It will get you into the Christmas Spirit.

With the colder weather, it was time for me to put on my “Chicken and Stars” quilt.  This was a great gift from a friend thirteen years ago.

Christmas trees and decorations are starting to appear all around the building…so exciting. 

Blessings on you this Advent Season.

Sister Mary Lou


November 21, 2016

The official Year of Mercy ended Sunday.  The banner that had hung on the Reader’s Stand for the past year was removed on Sunday and carried out of Chapel by Sister Fabian Schneider.  Mercy will continue even as the Year of Mercy has ended!

Thanksgiving Day is this week…and we have so much to be thankful for.  I am making a list of things I am thankful for.  The first item on the list is for my Mom and Dad who gave me life.  Make your own list…and when you are feeling down, read that list over.

Calendar winter started at 6:44 a.m. today, but the look and feel of winter came on Friday when we got about 7 inches of snow and strong winds to move that snow around.  All schools  were called off already on Thursday evening.  I read a little article saying that snow storms are nature’s way of showing us God’s Power and Glory. 
I agree.


Safe travels for all who are out and about these days.
God bless you.

Sister Mary Lou


November 14, 2016

One quick glance out the window and one gets then feeling of a true fall day—overcast  and chilly…

This is National Bible Week.  How about opening the Good Book and reading a few pages? 

Well, elections are over and now it is for us to pray for those elected…that they carry out their duties…keeping in mind the common good in both their actions and directives.

While going through “stuff” the other day, I came across the following: 
                               Psalm 201
O Lord, You have probed me and You know me.
You know when I eat and when I don’t.
You understand my weight from afar.
My fastings and my feasts You scrutinize
Even before   a bite is in my mouth, behold,
O Lord, You know the whole of it.

Where can I go from Your Spirit?
From Your Presence, where can flee?
If I go to the pantry, You are there!
If I settle at the farthest limits of the refrigerator, even there You are!

O Lord, my weight is always before me.
You have formed my inmost being.
And I have shaped the rest.
My frame is not unknown to You.
Your eyes have seen my diets.
In Your Book they are all written,
My perseverance was limited before one of them existed.

How weighty are your designs, O God.
Mine, too!
Probe me, O God, and know my weight.
See if my path is slim.
And lead me in the way of starvation!
(Based somewhat on Psalm 139)

A fact you might NOT need to know:  November 28th is the birthday of Mickey Mouse. (Born in 1928)

This coming Sunday (November 20th, has many titles: 34th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Closing of the Holy Year, Feast of Christ the King,

Of all the deciduous trees on campus have lost their leaves except this one in the cemetary. These pretty purple flowers are still hanging in there too!

Peace and God’s blessings on you and those you love.

Sister Mary Lou


October 31, 2016
My little reflection book today talks about this day of Halloween.  It says: “Halloween’s origin date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, the eve of their new year on November 1.  Celts believed that on the night before the New Year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred, and the ghosts of the dead returned to earth.  Ghosts came to the doors of the living asking for forgiveness.  Until they were forgiven for harm they had done, they would never be at rest.  I have never forgiven that image of the spirits of the dead utterly unable to repay the living, begging for forgiveness,”
As I type, I am listening to the radio and they are talking about the big snowstorm 25 years ago when we got about 25 inches of snow in the Halloween Blizzard.  Do you remember it?  I remember.  I had gone to a Halloween party and had 6 plus inches of snow on my car three hours later.
The other day the little white posts with red tops were put along the driveways so the snow-plow-ers know where the edges of the roads are when the big snow fall comes.

Here are a few pieces of information that you probably don’t need to know.  What are baseball pitchers scared of? (Bats)  What’s a boxer’s favorite part of a joke?  (The punch line.)  What is a battery’s favorite football team? (The Chargers)   Why did the golfer wear two pairs of pants? (In case he got a hole in one.)
The Music Center’s Halloween Recital on Sunday was lots of fun. Forty plus pianists and violin players entertained us for an hour.  Most of the musicians are in the beginning of their musical careers and the pieces were quite short…but easy to listen to.  Some of the players were dressed for the perfoirmances.
The Franciscan Community Volunteers were at the Motherhouse last weekend for a couple days of retreat.
The Grotto is very beautiful right now with all the plants in full bloom.  Thank you, Bev, for your work in caring for the flowers.

Last week about 30 volunteers got the Christmas Appeal envelops all stuffed and ready for mailing about Thanksgiving time.  I think they set a record by doing the job of readying 15,000+ envelopes in 2 ½ days.

Allen really got into the Halloween spirit when he came dressed for work today.  And some Sisters decorated cookies for lunch this noon.

I got my copy of the Minnesota Conservation Volunteer last week.  The cover is a picture of a lone fisher-person on a big lake trying to catch the big one.  Many years ago when the Sisters from Africa came to the United States, they were surprised to hear about ice-fishing.  I believe someone took them out one time.  All the clothing to keep warm was another surprise.
November 1st is the Feast of All Saints—a time to remember those ordinary holy people who we know are Saints.
November 1st is the 125th anniversary of the creation of the game of Basketball in1891 by James Naismith in Springfield, MA.
November 1st is also World AIDS Day.  Let us pray for all those people who have the disease.
November 2nd is All Souls’ Day.  We pray for those who have died, that they may soon be admitted into heaven and have Eternal Life with the Lord Jesus.
Don’t’ forget to set the clocks back one hour Saturday night.

God bless you.                                                                                                                         Sister Mary Lou