Saturday, March 19, 2016

Our Lady and St. Joseph

The Earthly parents of Christ, Our Lady and St. Joseph, are wonderful to keep in mind at any time of the year. This weekend we've had the extra blessing of combining them into our days...learning, praying and keeping them close.

Yesterday was the last Friday of Lent so we took the opportunity to again head to a church on the way to St. Vincent and pray the Stations of the Cross. Our friends were there and I remarked in passing that we were going to try to find the Marian Shrine in Oakland before heading to classes. "Oh," he said, "we'll take you there."

It's not totally out of place, since they're the ones who told us about it but it is totally beyond expectation since it took them at least an hour out of their way. They're like that...they hear the whispers and follow without hesitation.

It took two tries but we finally found it. It's colloquially called Our Lady of the Parkway shrine because it directly overlooks the highway coming into town. Walking down the steep hill and the even more narrow walkway to reach the altar and shrine felt a lot like Slovakia. So did the peace and solitude.
view from above the shrine

Our friend helped build the altar!
The 8th Station, I think.
my girl and her Mama
She was upset because we made her stop praying to pose ;0)

thus, the name

heading back up the hill

Glorious, Our Lady kind-of-day
Today, March 19th, is the feast of St. Joseph. We had a bunch of things on the calendar but we scrapped them to spend a day at home together. Working in imitation of the Holy Family, I spent my day in the kitchen while dh directed the children in their work. Today's work...Spring cleaning (since it's also the first day of Spring! even if it is snowing...)

the baseboards and banisters crew

I love having lots of time in the kitchen...when it happens to be a feast day on which I can break my fast, even better!

my pretzel dough helper...he likes running the mixer
meatballs for new mom meals and browned butter...the beginning of all good things Slovak (it ended up as mushroom soup)

dh helped with shaping
our St. Joseph pretzels, complete with carpenter square and hammer

St. Joseph's Sfinge (without the filling...that came later...ricotta and chocolate chips. yum.)
Sigh. Someday I dream of hosting a big St. Joseph's table here but, for now, it's just us and that's ok. If you're curious, go over to St. Joseph's altar and check out the virtual version. Very informative.

God is so good. He brings others into our lives to help us along our path to Him. He gives us small breaks in the middle of Lent to take a breath and rejoice in His foster father and all fathers who have a place in our lives. He gives us more than enough so that we might share with those who need at this moment. He introduces the connections and gives us the power to chose. How blessed we are.

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