Baptism and Chrismation

Thanks to Fr. Sebastian Carnazzo for allowing me to share his inspiring and edifying podcast on Baptism… so much scripture, ancient history and many traditions packed into one talk!  Fr. Carnazzo is the pastor of St. Elias Melkite Rite Church in Los Gatos, CA. If you are ever in the area, definitely go to the Divine Liturgy at this beautiful, warm and welcoming parish.

Defining Beauty

Mammogram Day!

I’ve had my fill of the biopsies, surgeries, chemo and radiation that can follow.  Not as bad as some of my friends, but more than I hope to have to endure again, God’s will be done.

Four years out, I find myself irritated–about the hair that didn’t come back, the extra weight gained and the way the neckline on all my camisoles dips noticeably to the left.  So I went to confession for vanity.

I didn’t want to confess that.  I wanted to argue that it’s not fair; that I’ve taken care of myself my whole life.  I’m a granola girl from California, an athlete; I won’t eat fast foot, yada, yada.  But by God’s grace, even in my anger, I knew I should be thankful to be alive; filled with gratitude to be able to run with my dog, to ride a bike 50 miles with my husband, to hold and play with my granddaughter, to still paint and play with my ponies and friends.

What are we hoping for when we long to be beautiful?  What are we seeing when we hate ourselves for not being beautiful?  What truly defines a beautiful woman? 

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