Friday, October 15, 2010

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Catholic Word President’s Statement on the Pope’s Creation of New Pontifical Council

Catholic Word President’s Statement on the Pope’s Creation of New Pontifical Council

I love using the word "Catholic" in a public place

Yesterday, I was at the counter of the Post Office mailing off a few packages of books. One large parcel was going to China! Yes, China. Someone there had ordered all of my books and a few of them in multiple copies. I have been praying for the recipients for the past couple of days since the order arrived.

A line was building behind me, as often happens at the Post Office. As I left the counter the clerk gave me instructions about how I might track the package after I expressed that I sure hoped it would get there.

As I headed out, a gentleman in the line called out and asked if I was sending out another manuscript. I recognized him from church and said, "No, actually someone in China ordered a bunch of my CATHOLIC books! I sure hope they won't be persecuted in any way."

The gentleman said, "God is using you all over the world!"

About twenty people or more waiting in line looked on. I'm sure they heard the word "Catholic." I said it loud enough. As it came from my lips out loud in the public place, I smiled inside. God is good!

I am so happy that my books will be reaching people in China. Please pray along with me for the recipients and that the parcel gets to the right place without any problems. Thank you so much in advance.

God bless you!

Donna-Marie

Sunday, October 10, 2010

This is not a FISHY story!

I want to share a story about one of my encounters while visiting in Texas. Many of you may know that I recently traveled to San Antonio and Corpus Christi to give a couple of talks and book signings.

After I finished my work at a huge conference for women in San Antonio put on by the Pilgrim Center for Hope, a friend drove me to Corpus Christi where I would stay for a few days and meet with many of the women I spoke to at a retreat a little over a year ago. Excited that I'd be back to Corpus Christi, the women of St. Helena's went ahead and arranged some book signings, informal talks and various get-togethers.

It had been a very busy working summer back home in Connecticut (no time for a break), and I was really looking forward to putting my feet in the ocean at the National Seashore where I had visited on my last trip to Corpus Christi. So, my friend and I made a quick "pit stop" to the beach. We took off our sandals and walked to the water and stood there taking in the gorgeous views of God's Creation, while experiencing the wonderful sensation of warm ocean water flowing across our feet.

We would only be there for about ten minutes before Katherine would drive me a bit further up the road to my destination. But, standing there just about took my breath away. The ocean always brings a special peace to my heart. I was thankful for those moments and hoped to fit in a couple of hours more of that beauty and blessing in the coming days in between my upcoming events in Corpus Christi.


See the pelicans flying over the ocean?



We saw that there was a fisherman wading in the water, busy with his poles. I said "hello" to him and we began a little conversation. The fisherman asked where we were from and we explained that Katherine was from San Antonio and I was from Connecticut.

Then the question was asked, "What brings you to Corpus?"

So, I explained that I was a Catholic author and had given a talk and book signing in San Antonio and would now visit some friends in Corpus and do a couple of more book signings before heading back home.

We talked a little about my books and Mickey, the fisherman told me he knew his wife would be interested in reading my Mother Teresa book. I told him I'd get a business card from my purse and give it to him just in case he and his wife would like to look me up on the Internet to learn more about my books.

I asked him about his fishing. He said he loved to be there in the ocean and "think about nothing."

I knew what he meant, but I suggested it was also a very good time to "pray." We then chatted about the fish he had caught and he expressed that he really wanted "to catch a big one - like about a 24 inch fish."

An inspiration suddenly came to me and I said, "I'll tell you what, I am going to pray that you catch a BIG fish. If you do, I want you to do me a favor and thank God for the fish."

He said, "You know, I'm not picky. It doesn't have to be today. It can be in the next few days."

I was secretly thinking that, perhaps if he caught the big fish, he'd think about praying and thanking God. So, I reminded him about the idea a couple of more times and then I asked if I could take his picture. He agreed, and, better yet, he said, "Let me hold up my fish."

So, I braved the millions of anchovies that were swimming all around my feet in the shallow water darting madly into my ankles, and went in a little further where they were even thicker to snap a shot.

We said our "good byes." I thought about that fisherman on and off for a few days, praying that he caught a BIG fish, if it was God's will.


Showing me his fish the day we met

I had a very nice time in Corpus Christi visiting and giving talks and book signings. I went home to Connecticut on Thursday.

After Mass this morning, I received an email from the fisherman! The subject line said, "Your prayer for big fish for me." My heart soared. "Wow, that fisherman wrote to me, what a blessing!" I thought, and then quickly clicked on the email to see the message.

He wrote, "Last Sun. Met at beach in Corpus Christi. You took a pic of me with string of fish. U said U would pray for me to catch big fish. If u did, it worked. 30 inch red drum on Wed. Thank you."

Imagine that? God is so good! The fish was even bigger than he hoped for. I was so happy I had given him my business card so that I could find out about his BIG fish!

We wrote back and forth in a few more emails. He told me that he left Corpus Christi on Thursday (the day after he caught the BIG fish and the same day I left) because he was scheduled to attend an event and then head home to another area of Texas. He said he was happy that we met.

This fisherman will hold a special place in my heart. I sense that God touched Mickey in a special way out there in the ocean. Only God knows, but I pray that this fisherman will think of God and prayers every time he goes fishing, and maybe even more often than that!


Here's my fisherman friend holding up his thirty inch fish! Prayers were answered!

I know that our dear Lord wants us to spread His love everywhere - at the grocery store, the Post Office, on a plane, in the ocean - EVERYWHERE!

Remember, He calls us to be FISHERS of men!


[By the way, I have permission from Mickey, the fisherman to post the photos, etc.]

Friday, October 8, 2010

Sweet times in Corpus Christi, Texas!

I just recently gave a key note talk at a woman's conference in San Antonio, Texas at an event put on by the Pilgrim Center for Hope. I am awaiting photos of the event to post here on my blog.  So, that will have to be in another post. After that amazing event in San Antonio where I spoke to 500 or so women and met with them afterwards at my book signing table, I went on to Corpus Christi, Texas to visit the women I gave a retreat to a little over a year ago and to see my dear friend, Fr. James Farfaglia whom I actually grew up with in Ridgefield, CT (but we didn't know it at the time!). I actually graduated one year before Fr. James. More on that in the Foreword I am writing for his new book which I'll tell you about soon.

While in Corpus Christi, Texas to visit at St. Helena's I also did a book signing at a local Catholic store called the Catholic Shoppe. The same day (in between the two book signings at the shop) I attended an impromptu luncheon put on by a sweet friend, Nury at her home. I say "impromptu" because Nury came up with the idea the afternoon before and put on such a beautiful luncheon you would have thought it was planned for weeks! Taco salad, fruit, fresh home made soup (just for me!), Sangria (yum!), and home-made flan, made by Nury. I'm sure there was more, too, but these are the highlights. I met with my friend Rosie's friends and gave a talk to them about Mother Teresa after our lunch and also signed books for the women. After that it was back to the Catholic Shoppe for another book signing. Then, later on that night, I enjoyed an informal dinner at St. Helena's with some of the women from the parish.

Here are a smattering of photos of the day:





















Then off to the luncheon at Nury's home...




During my talk

Book signing and chatting

More book signing and chatting with each woman as they met with me



Some of us who were posing for a picture (Gee, where's the humble hostess? Oh, there she is with her back to the camera!)



More of my talk



Stay tuned for more news and photos of the remainder of the day in a while.




My visit to Corpus Christi

I just returned from my visits to San Antonio and Corpus Christi, Texas  (news and photos coming up!). Until I get a chance to post some photos and news, you can take a look at a post from Fr. James's blog about my visit to Corpus Christi and St. Helena's: by clicking here.



Candid shot of Theology on Deck at St. Helena's

Friday, October 1, 2010

In San Antonio!

I am in San Antonio, Texas - arrived last night after traveling through thunderstorms and torrential rains, and two BUMPY flights. God is good and all is well. I will be leaving my hotel room shortly to go over and do a book signing at a very special retreat put on by the Pilgrim Center of Hope here in San Antonio.

I was greeted by a sweet family last night and here are the two children I met in the airport who were there along with their mother. They warmed my heart!



Please pray for everyone who will be there. I have a lot of catching up to do with all of you! I've been quite busy but plan to continue my Rome story as soon as I can.

Here's a sweet picture of the faith-filled boys and girls at Mass this morning whom I was blessed to be with due to the kindness of one of the Moms whom I met last night. I prayed for all of you at Mass and during the Rosary this morning.


I better get ready. My ride will be here shortly! Pray for all of us please. God bless you!

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