Saturday, 26 May 2012

Virgin of the Open Hands

Icon, "Virgin of the Open Hands" written by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2012
This recent icon of Our Lady will be the last image of her that I will feature during this month of May, the month dedicated by the Church to the Blessed Mother.  I will be posting again on the 30th, but that will be a non-icon posting, probably more flowers.

This icon, showing Our Lady receptive and waiting, is a good image in preparation for tomorrow's great feast:  Pentecost -- the birthday of the Church.  As we know, Christ came to establish a Church, His Body, on earth so that there would never again be any confusion as to what He expected of His followers.  Of course, all we have to do is look around us to see how confused the world remains!  The Church, however, is like a still point in the midst of chaos where we find the Truth, the person of Jesus Christ, which Truth never changes. 

So, let us prepare to celebrate Pentecost tomorrow by attending Church and wishing each other Happy Birthday!  (As anyone who knows me well is aware, I am really keen on birthdays and never miss an opportunity to celebrate or acknowledge birthdays of family and friends and my own birthday, of course!).  For each one of us is member of the Body of Christ, the Church, so it is our birthday too.

Here is an icon from 3 or 4 years ago depicting the third mystery of the Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary:  the descent of the Holy Spirit on the Blessed Mother and the Apostles.

Icon, "Descent of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost",
by the hand of Sarah "Sallie" Thayer
If you look closely, you will notice that there is a flame above the head of every one there except Our Blessed Mother.  This is true in a great many of the icons which use this pattern to depict Pentecost.  Why is this?

Well, Our Lady is known as the "spouse of the Holy Spirit" and was overshadowed by the Spirit at the Annunciation.  In other words, one could assume that she has been filled with the Holy Spirit all along while the apostles are just receiving that fullness for the first time -- as Jesus promised them they would.

And, so, dear friends, I wish each and everyone of you a fresh in-filling of the Holy Spirit, a happy birthday as you celebrate the Birthday of the Church and the joy and peace that God, the Holy Spirit, alone can give.

Remember, if you take that open-handed stance of Our Lady, shown in the icon at the beginning of this posting, you will be amazed at how much love Our Lord is able to pour into your heart on this special feast day. 
Happy Pentecost everyone!



Best Friends Forever (BFF)

"Babysitting is not as easy as it looks!"

"Sitting like this was OK when she was a kitten, but now... it's like an instant headache!"

Poor Lassie.  He just happened to pass by the new born ducks when their mother was not there!  Now they are going to think he is their mother forever!  Poor doggie...

(perfect example of imprinting)



Brenda took this photo back on the 18th of May,
2012.  Here is Suki in her favourite awake place!
 Brenda took this photo of Suki while she was here last week.  As you can see, Suki is sitting in her favourite place.  She is carefully peering through the slats in the blinds as she sits.  Eventually, she will stretch out on the top of this file box and continue to watch the birds coming and going.  Finally, she will get tired and will then simply climb up onto the window ledge, walk the length of it and step daintily into her "crows-nest" bed where she curls into the shape of a ball and goes to sleep.  At least this is how things are supposed to work, and normally do, unless we have company!  Then, poor Suki, has to constantly be leaving her post at the window or her bed to go and investigate each and every unusual noise.  As you can imagine, this is a very difficult task!

At the moment, however, this is not a concern as we do not have any visitors this weekend.  Thus, Suki is able to follow her routine quite contentedly.  At the moment she is sound asleep and will continue to sleep until her inward alarm tells her it is noon and time for lunch. 

The only visitor we had stop by this past week was my friend, Eugene.  Suki seems to have accepted him, finally, and now allows him to scratch her chin.  There is nothing she likes better than having someone scratch her "chin bone".  Next she likes to rub the cheekbones, hard, against your fingers.  This is, of course, one of the ways a cat has of scent marking their property and territory.

Just as I was writing the above, some birds noisily flew past the window and thus Suki is up and investigating.  It seems that a cat's jobs, like a woman's, are never done!

Speaking of women, let me report on how I am doing.  Other than falling asleep for an instant here and an instant there all day long, I am doing fine! 

Actually, so long as I stay seated whenever I feel at risk of an "episode", I am safe.  Once this past week when I was feeling that "hypnotic" feeling that precedes a quick sleep episode, I thought to myself:  "I will be OK... I don't need to sit down."  Well, if I had not been standing next to the counter between the kitchen and the living room, I would have had another bad fall.  Thanks be to God that I "woke up" just as I was falling and was able to grab the counter top and keep myself upright (more or less).  I guess after not falling for almost four months now, I was beginning to get just a bit cocky. Now I will go back to being careful again. 

St. John of God continues to be a real presence in my life and prayers.  This week I received a parcel from Brother Finnian containing some lovely medals of St. John of God along with a card for my friend presently going through chemo.  I still haven't had anymore news about the possibility of a banner being made from one of my drawings of St. John of God, but Brother indicates that I should be hearing something about this before too much longer.

We have been having wonderful summer weather here and everyone, it seems, has been outside enjoying it.  I am seriously thinking about getting myself organized and outside for a while so that I can enjoy the sunshine and warm breezes as the rain is supposed to return tomorrow.  We need the rain as there are already out-of-control wild fires up north in Ontario.

Fire -- that symbol of the Holy Spirit and of Pentecost -- when out of control is so deadly and destructive.  Yet, when under proper control, fire brings us so many blessings

"Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of Your faithful and enkindle in us the fire of Your love."

May the peace of God be with us all.

1 comment:

Monica @ Equipping Catholic Families said...

Hi Sallie!
I recognized your beautiful icons! I'm so glad that you have joined Catholic Bloggers Network! I'm so glad that you are linking up to the Monthly RoundUp here:
I have been helping set it up.

I hope that you can come visit my blog