I referenced Red Bird Ministries in my homily a few weeks ago. For those whose hearts were touched I offer the following quote and website for more information. “Red Bird Ministries serves ordinary families who have been given an extraordinary cross to carry. It is an organization that systematically guides individuals and couples through the complexity and trauma that happens with the loss of a child from pregnancy through adulthood.” They can be reached at www.redbird.love.

Coming up on Wednesday, which seems too early for me, is Ash Wednesday. We begin a new season that focuses on conversion, change of heart. There are many things we can do or give up for the season yet I encourage you to consider what will change your heart more into the heart of Jesus. Our Lord gave us the two great commandments of love of God and neighbor. What will help you to do that?

In one of our Sacred Worship meetings our group discussed the fact we are in the middle of the National Eucharistic Revival. As a parish we offer adoration each Wednesday and on First Friday. So what to do concretely to emphasize the real presence of Jesus in the Holy Eucharist? An idea was put forth that we are going to try during the Lenten season. There will be two temporary kneelers up front for those who want to kneel to receive Jesus. For those who are not able to kneel or simply wish to remain standing to receive Jesus can continue to do so. This is but an option that can allow us to reflect that receiving Jesus is not the same as receiving any other food. Jesus is the Bread of Life that calls us to more; to be like Jesus who gave Himself for us, we are to give ourselves to others in loving service.

Surrendering ourselves to Jesus is also a way to conversion. Let us continue with Day 6 of the Surrender Novena. “You are sleepless; you want to judge everything, direct everything and see to everything and you surrender to human strength, or worse–to men themselves, trusting in their intervention; this is what hinders My words and My views. Oh how much I wish from you this surrender, to help you; and how I suffer when I see you agitated! Satan tries to do exactly this: to agitate you and to remove you from My protection and to throw you into the jaws of human initiative. So, trust only in Me, rest in Me, surrender to Me in everything.” (After that prayer say 10 times) O Jesus, I surrender myself to You, take care of everything!