Celebrating Advent with St. Joseph

by Melannie Svoboda SND on December 2, 2019

Advent is a good time to reflect on St. Joseph. Although many things can be said about him, I have chosen to focus on three. First, Joseph takes a back seat in the gospels. John’s gospel doesn’t mention him at all. Mark refers to him only obliquely, calling Jesus “the carpenter’s son.” Luke’s focus is […]

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Quotations on Gratitude and Thanksgiving

by Melannie Svoboda SND on November 25, 2019

This week, as we in the United States celebrate our national holiday called Thanksgiving, I went into my quotation file and pulled out some quotes to mark this beautiful day. I suggest you read them slowly and prayerfully. 1. Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but also the mother of all others. (Cicero) […]

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“The Flowing Grace of Now” by Macrina Wiederkehr

by Melannie Svoboda SND on November 18, 2019

Sister Macrina Wiederkehr, OSB, has written a new book. Those familiar with her writing will be excited by this news, for it has been almost ten years since she blessed us with a book. Although I have never met Macrina in person, she and I have exchanged some emails and notes over the years. I […]

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What Are You Worried About?

by Melannie Svoboda SND on November 11, 2019

I worry. About many things. I bet you worry too–at least about some things. Sometimes I think we should define humans not as homo sapiens (wise one) but as homo anxietas (worried one!) What do I worry about? Sometimes small things: Will my casserole turn out? Will I run into road construction on my drive […]

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A Mother’s Apron

by Melannie Svoboda SND on November 4, 2019

When I was growing up, my mother wore an apron every day. She donned it early in the morning and didn’t take it off until the kitchen was cleared after supper. She did everything in an apron. She stoked the coal furnace, made us breakfast, washed clothes, cleaned the house, picked green beans, made dumplings, […]

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Videos for the Feast of All Saints

by Melannie Svoboda SND on October 28, 2019

On November 1 we celebrate the feast of All Saints. In honor of that feast, I have a little treat for you: four very short videos (about 2-3 mins. each) on four individuals who are canonized saints or are in the process of being canonized. The videos are based on the book, The Blessed Among […]

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A Few Words about Whistleblowers

by Melannie Svoboda SND on October 21, 2019

This reflection is based primarily on two sources: 1) an article by Heidi Schlumpf in the National Catholic Reporter (Oct. 2, 2019) on Robert Ellsberg, the son of Daniel Ellsberg who “blew the whistle” on the Pentagon in 1971; and 2) an article in the Cleveland Plain Dealer (Oct. 13, 2019) by Tom Mueller, author […]

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“Overdue” by Valerie Schultz

by Melannie Svoboda SND on October 14, 2019

Valerie Schultz and her husband thought they had volunteered for their parish’s St. Vincent de Paul chapter. But through some fluke, their names were listed under the new detention ministry instead. The result of that fortunate mistake is her new book, Overdue: A Dewey Decimal System of Grace in which she shares some of her […]

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Praying the Rosary

by Melannie Svoboda SND on October 7, 2019

October 7 is the feast of the Holy Rosary… so I was thinking… As a little girl, I prayed the rosary kneeling beside my parent’s bed. It was usually May or October at 7:45 pm, and the rosary was being broadcast on the radio. We four kids, who moments earlier had been merrily playing outside […]

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Tapping into the Wisdom Within

by Melannie Svoboda SND on September 30, 2019

Today I invite you to tap into the wisdom you have within yourself, a wisdom you may not even know you have. Here’s how I came up with this little exercise. Recently I was reading about Nicholas Black Elk, a revered Native American. As some of you may know, he was a Catholic catechist whose […]

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