Wedding Mosaic – Artist Undetermined
New Year, New Beginnings
With the beginning of a new year, there is a tendency to want to start over or make changes to those elements of our lives with which we are dissatisfied. One of the areas we might want to change involves the patterns of relationships within the family that are uncomfortable. We can facilitate change by recognizing that some of the patterns in our interactions with specific family members have become a habit. That means that when one person in the family does something or says something we don’t like, we respond in a way that keeps the negativity going without even recognizing that we play a role in maintaining that negative pattern. While we cannot make another person change, we can take the time to examine our habitual responses to that person’s actions and decide if our response might be fueling the negative interaction. Once we realize that our habitual response might be eliciting a further negative response on the part of the other person, we can start to experiment with a different reaction and see if that changes the interaction. By breaking our habitual response pattern we challenge the other person to change their reaction to us. These changes can create a more positive interaction in the relationship. The New Year is an opportunity for a new beginning, starting with changing your own behavior patterns.
Prayer for Families After the Floods
Gracious and Almighty Father,
In this time of loss and sorrow following the floods,
Please be with our families and loved ones
As we attempt to pick up the pieces of our damaged homes and tumultuous lives.
Give us strength and courage to face each day with hope and renewal.
Grant calm and patience to our mothers and fathers even when stresses are great.
Grant obedience and flexibility to our children even when they don’t fully understand what’s going on around them.
Grant generosity and compassion to our neighborhoods so that we might support each other and offer helping hands and gentle words when the strength of others falters.
Help us to grow closer to each other and to You
And let this be an opportunity for our faith to find new roots in your unceasing mercy.
Thank you, Heavenly Father, for all that you have done for us and continue to do,
You who live and reign forever and ever. Amen.
We also turn to you, our Blessed Mother, protector of families, that you may see our need as you saw the need of the newly married couple in Cana (John 2). We ask that you petition Jesus on our behalf to supply what necessities enable our households to return to normal again. Amen.
LA Bishops Make a Statement on Surrogacy Issue
The Louisiana Conference of Catholic Bishops (LCCB) seeks to articulate the Catholic Church’s teaching on the issue of surrogacy in light of legislation proposed during last year’s legislative session as well as what is before the Louisiana Legislature presently. The Church is clear and consistent in her teaching that surrogacy, in any form, is to be opposed as an immoral means to create a family. The desire to have a child is both natural and good. We recognize that issues of infertility can be incredibly sensitive and personal. While acknowledging this reality, it is important to realize that pursuing all means in the effort to create a child presents moral and ethical concerns and that a child is truly a gift to be given as opposed to a right to attain.
Surrogacy arrangements commercialize and objectify women relegating them to a utilitarian purpose. The Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith spoke to this point in Donum Vitae as it stated that surrogacy is contrary to the dignity of persons. Surrogacy diminishes the dignity of women in that it grossly focuses on what women can produce as opposed to the entire worth and being of who women have been created to be. In addition, surrogacy fails to acknowledge the uniqueness of the mother-child relationship to the detriment of women from a physical, psychological, and spiritual level.
To finish reading the rest of their statement or to read the statement as a whole, click here.
2018 Dates for