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Grief Resources

5 Aug

Before we can pray or forgive or even listen, we need to be at peace with ourselves. Grief Journal is one woman’s story of coming through the loss of a young husband and miraculously finding herself. “I had a good marriage and a happy life,” Linda Andreozzi writes. “We had fun. I also drank a lot, worked too much, watched TV every day, and had no spiritual life. The loss of everything I knew and held dear gave me two things that can never be taken from me: my sobriety and my companionship with God. I will never be alone in that same black hole where I whispered by first real prayer: ‘Help!'”

You can order your copy of Grief Journal online at goodgroundpress.com or by calling Good Ground Press at 800-232-5533. Only $15.95 per copy!

Gospel Reflection for July 28, 2019, 17th Sunday Ordinary Time

22 Jul

Sunday Readings: Genesis 18.20-32; Colossians 2.12-14; Luke 11.1-13

“Ask, and it will be given to you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened to you.” – Luke 11.9

To pray that God’s name be hallowed and that God’s kingdom come is to acknowledge that all barriers to love must be dissolved. Anything that separates race from race, rich from poor, gender from gender, age group from age group, Christian from non-Christian is a barrier to the holiness God wishes to share with believers. Biases have no place in the community that names God our Father.

Jesus calls us to preserve in prayer. God is more gracious that a friend who reluctantly gets up in the night to help us, but God’s graciousness does not guarantee that we get what we want. We may not receive what we ask for; we may instead discover more than we were looking for or be surprised at what’s behind the door on which we are knocking.

What are you seeking in prayer? What have you found? 


If you enjoy this Gospel Reflection, please visit the Sunday By Sunday page to order a subscription or to view sample issues. Start a small bible study. Be a leader.

Important Feast Days Coming Up!

16 Jul

Two feast days of Gospel women are coming up in the next weeks.

July 22 is the feast day of Mary Magdalene, first witness to Jesus’ resurrection. July 29 is the day that honors Martha of Bethany, sister of Mary and Lazarus. These women are pictured for you in Holy Women of Luke’s Gospel.

Mary Magdalene is first witness to Jesus’ resurrection in all four Gospels. She was among the women from Galilee who follow Jesus and provide for him out of their resources. From early Christianity she has been called “the apostle to the apostle”, the bringer of good news to them and to us all. Click here to pray with Mary for resurrection in your own life.

 

Martha of Bethany and her sister Mary welcomed Jesus into their home. Most women remember Martha for the scolding she got from Jesus. “Martha, Martha, you are busy about many things, but your sister Mary has chosen the better part.” To read her story and an up-to-date interpretation, click here. Pray with Martha to resist the social pressures in your own life.

You will need a copy of Holy Women in Luke’s Gospel to meet and pray with the 14 other women he features. Go to goodgroundpress.com to order or call 800-232-5533.

Tiny Retreat #2: Hildegard of Bingen

9 Jul

Hildegard of Bingen: Patron saint of green and growing

Hildegard was only five years old in 1098 when her parents brought her, their tenth child, to the monastery of St. Disibode. A holy woman named Jutta took the little girl in and taught her Latin and music so she could sing the psalms with the monks and nuns. Jutta also taught Hildegard everything she knew about herbal medicine. At age 15, Hildegard decided to follow the Benedictine way and become a nun. When Jutta died, Hildegard became the prioress of the community.

Hildegard was a mystic, a person who experiences extraordinary communion with God. Hildegard wrote down her understandings of God in vivid pictures. Many women were attracted to her teaching about God and came to join her monastery, which grew so large that Hildegard started another monastery near Bingen, a nearby city. She continued to write and teach. Here is one of her poems.

Again I am in turmoil.

Should I speak, or must I be silent?

I feel like a gnarled old tree, withered and crooked and flaky.

All the stories of the years are written on my branches.

The sap is gone, the voice is dead.
 


But I long to make again a sacred sound.

I want to sound out God

I want to be a young juicy, sap-running tree

So that I can sing God as God knows how.
 


O God, you gentle viridity

O Mary, honeycomb of life

O Jesus, hidden in sweetness as flowing honey,

Release my voice again.
 


I have sweetness to share.
I have stories to tell.

I have God to announce.

I have green life to celebrate.

I have rivers of fire to ignite.

Hildegard make up the word viridity. It means greening, the life power of God that is in everything. For Hildegard the Word of God is greening; it has the power to create Christians. A tree growing and branching out is greenness in motion. Love is green. Jesus is greenness incarnate. Sin is not green. Sin is drying up, losing one’s ability to create.

• Read the first two verses of the poem again. When have you felt your sap is gone, your voice dead? What or who helped you know you could sing again?

• Does Hildegard’s way of calling on God, on Mary, on Jesus resonate with you? Can you read the last verse of the poem as your own song?

If Hildegard were alive today, she would sing about God’s work in the unfolding of creation in evolution. “O Holy Spirit” she writes, “you make life alive, you move in all things, you are the root of all created being, you waken and reawaken everything that is.”
 
For her teaching, Pope Benedict named Hildegard a Doctor of the Church. This means she is one of the Catholic Church’s greatest teachers. There are four women Doctors—St. Hildegard, St. Catherine of Siena, St. Teresa of Avila, and St. Therese of Lisieux.

• Make a resolution to see the Holy Spirit greening the earth around you. Pray a thanksgiving prayer each day for one beautiful thing you see.

 

 

“I am a feather on the breath of God.”

 

 


 

 

Each of the Cosmos Cards has a fact about one of God’s creative moves and a blessing. These cards are ready to mail as a postcard for someone who needs a regular reminder that God is with him or her. $15 for all 25 cards.

 

 

An Amazing Journey is a discussion guide on the Universe Story. The book features 50 articles by leaders in this field. Click here to view the Table of Contents. Only $20!

Order online at goodgroundpress.com or call 800-232-5533.

Check out Sunday by Sunday!

28 May

Sunday by Sunday keeps the Sunday Gospel with you all week long.

 

We are happy to share some of our Sunday by Sunday issues with you. Each weekly issue brings you:

  • The Sunday Gospel in plain language.
  • Reflection on how the Gospel can shape your life.
  • Prayer on the Gospel theme.

Click here to view some sample issues of Sunday by Sunday. Our new subscription year begins in October. Wouldn’t you like to gather a group to share the Gospel with each week? Individual subscriptions are also available. We guarantee it will enrich your life.

Click here for our calendar and prices. You can order online, or call Good Ground Press 800-232-5533. We still have Summer and September Sunday by Sunday issues. If you are not ready to commit to a subscription for 2019-2020, but want to explore what Sunday by Sunday has to offer, please give us a call at the above number and we will ship them out to you the next day.

Enjoy the blessings of the gospel with Sunday by Sunday.

 

 

Celebrate Easter!

26 Apr

Visit goodgroundpress.com to print these pages of Easter prayers and reflections. Treat yourself and those you love to all seven weeks of Easter. Carry the prayer mantra in your pocket or purse to keep your heart happy and at peace.

 

Ash Wednesday

6 Mar

Photo via Flickr user Lawrence OP

“So let us be marked not for sorrow.
And let us be marked not for shame.
Let us be marked not for false humility

or for thinking we are less than we are
but for claiming what God can do
within the dust, within the dirt,
within the stuff of which the world is made,

and the stars that blaze in our bones,
and the galaxies that spiral inside the smudge we bear.”

Jan Richardson from Blessing the Dust

Happy Mardi Gras!

5 Mar

Mardi Gras means Fat Tuesday. In years past people didn’t eat meat for all of Lent, so this was their last chance to fry pancakes in bacon fat. We have gone beyond that small feast to all-out parties and carnivals.

Margaret Murray, CSJ, from the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet Los Angeles province, gives us thoughts on feasting and fasting to take into Lent. May they be a blessing to you.


 

This Lent we read from Luke’s Gospel with his stories of forgiveness, compassion, and second chances. Sister Joan’s new book is ideal for faith-sharing groups, Bible study, RCIA, homilists, and anyone who wants to understand scripture better. Only $10!

Order online at goodgroundpress.com or call us at 800-232-5533.

A Lenten Practice: Living Like Francis

22 Feb

Living Like Francis Today invites both individuals and small groups to explore six Franciscan themes —



living simply,

humbly,
prayerfully,
lovingly,

with care for creation,
and at peace.



This small 60-page book combines the teaching and prayers of St. Francis with gospel stories and reflection suggestions. A bargain at just $5.50. Click here for a sample chapter. Order online or call Lacy at 800-232-5533.


Visit goodgroundpress.com to check out Lenten retreats, prayers, and free downloads for you, your family, and your parish!

Special Lent Offer!

10 Jan

Lent is looming. Ash Wednesday is March 6 this year. Spending time with the Gospel is a great way to keep Lent. Sunday by Sunday makes Gospel-centered faith sharing easy.

 The Sunday Gospels during Lent ask each of us —

  What transforms you? Gives you life?
  What have you done with a second chance?
  Is it the prodigal son who is lost or his older
 brother?
  Which stones should you stop throwing?



Click here to read some of the Sunday by Sunday issues for Lent. Then imagine every adult in your parish reading them, too.

Our Lent/Easter unit of eight issues is only $2.00 per unit when you order 100 units or more. Call us today at 800-232-5533 to reserve your copies of Sunday by Sunday at only $2.00 per person. We look forward to hearing from you.

Visit goodgroundpress.com to see our other Lent resources!

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