Showing posts with label Bible. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bible. Show all posts

18 Apr 2017

Ad/hd & Anxiety How the Catholic Faith Helps me Cope

Ad/hd as an Asset

My Ad/hd went diagnosed throughout my childhood and young adulthood.  Unfortunately, that resulted in some major self-esteem issues, among other things we'll be discussing in this series in the weeks to come.  The realization that I was blessed (and it is a blessing) with Attention Deficit/Hyperactive Disorder came in my early thirties when I was a young mother and an early childhood educator. My oldest was showing signs of Ad/hd so I began researching to learn more about the signs and symptoms.  I started with the book, Driven to Distraction by Ed Hallowell, in audio version on cassette from the library. Clue number one this wasn't just about my son should have been my reliance on audio books to finish books as staying focused reading has always been one of my biggest challenges.

I will never forget having to pull over and rewind the cassette to re-listen to Dr. Hallowell list the 15 possible symptoms of Ad/hd.  I took out a scrap piece of paper from my purse and counted up, not my son's symptoms, but mine!   At that time, I could identify presently displaying or having displayed 13 of the 15!  I was shocked.  Believe it or not, it had never even crossed my mind that I had Ad/hd.  That is the day I became an expert, literally.

For More on What Will be Covered in this New Series visit:  RECONCILED TO YOU All Rights Reserved, Allison Gingras 2017

20 Feb 2017


Cristina Trinidad visits A Seeking Heart with Allison Gingras on BreadboxMedia.com.  
We discuss a fabulous new book that I was sent to review 
and fell in love with How to Read Your Way to Heaven 
by Vicki Burbach (Sophia Institute Press)




All Rights Reserved, Allison Gingras 2017

4 Jan 2017

Finding Solace in the Winter Blues Through Prayer


The holiday season has come to an end. The decorations might already be packed away. The house seems quiet and barren without all of the colorful decorations, let alone the family and friends that filled the house throughout the holiday season. The family members have packed up and headed out. You feel a sense of emptiness after such a time of celebration. The winter blues have set in. What is one to do?

Find Solace in the Winter Blues


The quietude of January is a wonderful time to appreciate some one-on-one time with God. It is a great time to reacquaint ourselves with prayer. Engaging in conversation with God can... Read more...

18 Dec 2016

Gabriel, Joseph, and Mary



Monday's Gospel reading, Luke 1:26-38, is a repeat from December 8.

It starts with....

...A little earlier in that chapter we get an account of Gabriel's interview with Zachariah: Luke 1:10-20. That's when Gabriel personally delivers God's response to Zachariah's prayer — and Zachariah demands proof.

Zachariah got proof, all right. He couldn't talk for for months. Not until he agreed with his wife about his son's name: in writing.

Elizabeth said the boy's name was John, the same name Gabriel had specified....

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

8 Nov 2016

Numbers and Nero

From Wiley Miller's Non Sequitur (December 31, 2011); used w/o permission.

I don't have the 'I'd rather be dead' attitude of the deceased in that 2011 Non Sequitur strip. My viewpoint is more like Edison Lee's dad in yesterday's comic.

From John Hambrock's The Brilliant Mind of Edison Lee (November 7, 2016); used w/o permission.

I figure that someone will win the 2016 American presidential election. It'll probably a candidate from one of the two major political parties.

I think which candidate wins matters. But I also think that whoever gets the job — America will keep going. There's a great deal more to this country than the national government.

That's not what this post is about, though....

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

28 Aug 2016

Faith, the Universe, and Wisdom

I think the universe is billions, not thousands, of years old; Earth isn't flat; Adam and Eve aren't German; poetry isn't science; and thinking is not a sin.

If you've been reading my posts, you know why being a Christian doesn't interfere with my interest in science.

Feel free to skip the rest of this post. It's mostly about reading the Bible, the universe, and getting a grip.

I'll be back next Friday,1 most likely talking about Proxima Centauri b, a planet orbiting the next star over from ours: in Proxima's habitable zone.

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

12 Jul 2016

Pope Francis' Recipe for Holiness - One Part Grace

The Grace Trifecta

Standing before a room of 30 or so women facilitating my first faith sharing back in 2006, I fumbled around for the proper words as I tried to answer one participant's seemingly simple question on the grace of God.  What is grace?  While I had this innate understanding, I could not formulate the right words to express what I believed it to be. I realized, I had no definition.
Fast forward a few years, I am sitting in a small chapel in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament (aka Jesus in the Eucharist). In my reading I once again face the question, what is grace? This time I open the Catechism of the Catholic Church; and prayed for guidance from the Holy Spirit.   That day the Allison abridged version of how I define the grace of God, was born (see image above) and I discovered the GRACE TRIFECTA ... Read More 


All rights reserved, Allison Gingras 2016

21 Feb 2016

Taking the Bible Seriously

I take the Bible, Sacred Scripture, very seriously. As a Catholic I have to, and I'll get back to that.

I also pay attention to what some of the best minds of the last few thousand years thought about this sort of thing:
"12 I tell you, brothers, the time is running out. From now on, let those having wives act as not having them,

"those weeping as not weeping, those rejoicing as not rejoicing, those buying as not owning,

"those using the world as not using it fully. For the world in its present form is passing away."
(1 Corinthians 7:29-31)
- - - which is why I still think my youthful decision to stay out of the rat race was right. (December 13, 2015; May 3, 2015)

I don't, however, take what folks like Harold Camping say seriously.

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

19 May 2015

Make Room for Mary

The most fascinating mother I like to consider is the mother of Jesus. The Bible tells many stories involving Mary, which means the Holy Spirit invites us to contemplate her role in the Christian story. The wedding feast at Cana (John 2:1-12) is my favorite scriptural encounter with Jesus and Mary. Today's video explores why.

Jan Cossiers - The wedding at Cana, Jesus blesses the water
Jan Cossiers [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Not all of my Christian friends are entirely comfortable with the idea of asking Mary to pray for them, but the Bible shows Mary's intimate relationship with--and unparalleled faith in--her son. People who have been in love know that meeting the mother of their beloved is a big deal. Whether that momentous first encounter turns out to be splendid or horrid, the ongoing relationship with the beloved's mom has a deep and lasting effect on the two lovers.

Lovers of Jesus and readers of the Bible can't avoid encountering Mary. Jesus pays close attention to her, even when it seems he doesn't want to, as at the wedding feast. Imitators of Christ benefit from cultivating their relationship with the mother of our Lord.

Read the entire article and watch the two-minute video at Praying with Grace.

22 Mar 2015

Scrutinies, Options, and "a Great Multitude"

Someone called my father-in-law, asking which set of Bible readings were were using this week.

It's a reasonable question. One set for this fifth Sunday in Lent is Ezekiel 37:12-14; Romans 8:8-11; and John 11:1-45. The other, labeled "Fifth Sunday of Lent - Year A Scrutinies," is Jeremiah 31:31-33; Hebrews 5:7-9; and John 12:20-33.

Having options isn't odd: readings for some Sundays include an abbreviated version — I'm not a big fan of those, since I like hearing Sacred Scripture, and my attention span doesn't time out quite that fast....

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

4 Nov 2014

Contemplative Homeschool Unit: Creation

The Creation of the Sun, Moon, and Plants by Michelangelo

I haven’t done much blogging on homeschooling since publishing my book, but I hope to do more now. If you read my blog for spirituality, please stick around, as the bulk of my posts will still be on spirituality for adults.

A few weeks ago, my kids and I finished studying the Old Testament. Now we split into two groups. D and M are studying the early Church, while C is going back to the beginning of the Bible to read stories he missed. That means I am revisiting units I created about five years ago. As we go through them, I plan to share many of them with you in detail here. Today I am sharing the unit I created on Creation.

The purpose of a contemplative homeschool

The focus of the units I have created is on helping your children grow in their relationship with Christ. Academics is part of that, but not the most important part.  I want to help children learn to see God in everything. I want to teach them to practice mental prayer. I want religion to be a part of our homeschool daily, not just a subject we study a few times a week. You can learn more about my philosophy of homeschooling here and here.
Continue reading at Contemplative Homeschool.

13 Jul 2014

Vengeance, Anger, and Looking Ahead

"The avenger of blood may execute the murderer, putting him to death on sight."
(Numbers 35:19)
I ran into that bit from the Pentateuch in "Judas on a Pole," an episode in the second season of Bones. The writers used an 'Olde Englishe' translation that many Americans perceive as 'Biblical,' and that's another topic.

If someone murdered a member of my family, I would be very angry. There'd be something wrong with me if I wasn't.

Anger, Sin, and Getting a Grip


Anger is a "capital sin," a sin that's particularly serious because it leads to other sins. (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1866)

That doesn't mean that I've committed a sin every time I experience anger. I'm human, so I experience emotions. Emotions aren't good or bad by themselves. What matters is what we do with them. (Catechism, 1767)

If I hang on to anger, let it build into a desire to harm or kill someone else: that's where it becomes a sin. (Catechism, 1762-17752302-2303)

Many Americans seem to feel that God has anger management issues. After Jonathan Edwards' "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God," followed by 273 years of hellfire lectures: that's understandable. (December 1, 2013)

More at A Catholic Citizen in America.

3 Jun 2014

Love Notes from God


When I asked which Bible verse makes people feel most loved, the answers were surprising. Very few verses mentioned love at all. Many people were deeply affected by descriptions of Jesus' agony, suffering, and death on the Cross to save us. Others were amazed by all God had promised to give to us and how close he had to be, how far he had to stoop, to give us these gifts. But everyone had a different favorite. It made me realize how intensely each line of the Bible speaks to us. God's strength and love shine through his Word with the power to pierce every human heart.

Read more here

22 Apr 2014

Learning typology with Daniel in the lions’ den

File:Sir Peter Paul Rubens - Daniel in the Lions' Den - Google Art Project.jpg
Daniel in the Lions’ Den by Rubens (Wikimedia Commons).

I  titled this post “learning typology,” instead of “teaching typology,” because this is a subject we can adapt to any age group. Many adult Catholics are unfamiliar with typology. So if your children are grown, or you’re not a parent, read this for yourself. If you do have young children or you teach religious education, you can adapt this to your students’ ages.

If you are completely unfamiliar with typology or need a refresher course, start with my post on Teaching typology with Joseph and his brothers.

Since it is Easter,  it’s a good time to look at the similarities between the prophet Daniel and Christ. The story of Daniel in the Lions’ Den prefigures Christ’s Death and Resurrection. I will go through a proposed lesson step by step for various age and skill levels.


Continue reading at Contemplative Homeschool.

17 Jan 2014

Bible verses for your kids (and you!) to memorize


 File:William Dyce - The Virgin and Child - WGA07374.jpg


 
Reading back over some old posts recently, I realized I had promised to share with you some of the Bible verses we use for memory and copy work in our homeschool. Well, better late than never!

These verses are helpful for adults to know by heart as well as children. They teach about virtue, the importance of prayer, God’s character, and other aspects of the spiritual life.

Over the past several years, our family has  experienced the Bible as unit studies. Reading chronologically through the Golden Children’s Bible, I look for themes that can help us bring other subjects into our study of Scripture. (See more details on my homeschooling method here.)

I choose a verse for memorization and handwriting practice. Sometimes the verse comes right from the story. Other times I search through a concordance or consult my memory for a verse that encapsulates one of the themes we are considering.


Read more at Contemplative Homeschool..

27 Dec 2013

Top 10 tips for your spiritual life from 2013


File:Antonello da Messina - The Virgin Mary Reading - Walters 37433.jpg
The Virgin Mary Reading by Walters. Here are the posts
from 2013 she might recommend to you.



'Tis the season for reviewing the old year. How did you advance towards God this year? Do you remember those blog posts that really struck you at the time, or have you forgotten them? Here are some reminders of how you can grow closer to Christ, taken from my blog posts over the past year.

1. Read the Gospels
If you want to advance towards God, you must learn to love Him. Read what He revealed about Himself. Need more motivation to read Scripture?
Here are 10 Reasons Catholics should read the Bible.

2. Stop making excuses for missing prayer
You’re not going to grow closer to Christ if you aren’t willing to make sacrifices to spend time with Him.
Read 7 Ways to make time for prayer.

3. Ponder God’s Word in your heart
This follows from #s 1 and 2. It’s a particularly Carmelite way of honoring Mary.
See Mary pondered all these things–do you?

4. Choose to become a saint
St. Thomas Aquinas told his sister that the way to become a saint is to will it.
See the details: Can you become a saint by sheer will power?


Read the rest of the list at Contemplative Homeschool.

24 Sep 2013

Finding patterns in the Bible


File:Giovanni Gerolamo Savoldo 005.jpg
Transfiguration by Giovanni Gerolamo Savoldo (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons).



Last week for homeschool we did a narration of the Transfiguration. While reading the story aloud, I had an epiphany: it echoes the story of Moses receiving the 10 Commandments. I shared the parallel between the two stories with my boys. Now I’d like to share it–and the principle behind it–with you.

As a writer and avid reader, I am convinced of the inspiration of Sacred Scripture. (Besides, of course, being convinced as a Christian by the authority of the Church.) Dozens of writers over thousands of years produced the book we now call the Bible. They were from different cultures, used different literary genres, and had diverse purposes.

Amazingly, the same themes are developed throughout the Bible from beginning to end. Types and anti-types, prophecies and their fulfillment, fill its pages. You can follow one idea like a wave on the sea from Genesis to Revelation, or stand on the shore and admire the rhythm of the ocean that is the entire Bible.
I love to share these patterns with my children. I get excited about them, and that excites my boys!


Read the rest at Contemplative Homeschool.

26 Jul 2013

Teach your kids the one thing necessary

Are you teaching your kids to do mental prayer? I’ve written about this in the past with a few examples  of kids’ meditations. Today I’m sharing with you a meditation for kids about… mental prayer.

You may want to print this out.

File:Georg Friedrich Stettner (attr) Christus im Hause der Martha.jpg

1. Read aloud to your children Luke 10:38-42, using your favorite children’s Bible. This is the Gospel from last Sunday, so they should recognize it.

2. Study the painting above. (It’s Christ in the House of Martha and Mary, attributed to Georg Friedrich Stettner). Ask them to identify the people in the painting. Discuss the painting in this manner: “Martha and Mary are both holding something. What do you think those objects are? What does each represent? (Mary is reading the Bible. This represents meditating on Sacred Scripture. Martha is holding a duck, symbolizing being busy with household tasks.) Who are the other people in the picture? What are they doing? How many people appear to have been listening to Jesus? (Only Mary does.) Does Mary look disturbed by what Martha is saying? (No, she looks peaceful.)

3. Discuss: Why do you think the artist filled the foreground of the picture with food? (To show how much work Martha had to do or had been doing.) Do you think Martha was doing something important? (Yes, Jesus and His disciples needed to eat.) What could she have done differently so she could sit and listen to Jesus too? (She could have made a simpler meal.)

4. Remind your children of the Feeding of the 5000. How much food did Jesus need to feed all those people? (5 loaves of bread and 2 fish.) Do you think Martha needed to work all day to cook for Jesus? (Probably not, because He could have fed them miraculously, as He had done before.) Why do you think Martha was working so hard? (She was probably trying to show Jesus how much she loved Him by making Him a great meal.)


Continue reading at  Contemplative Homeschool.

14 May 2013

If God is willing...



" Come now, you who say, 'Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and get gain'; whereas you do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, 'If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that'" (James 4:13-15).

This passage from James the Apostle can almost seem silly. Should we really preface every statement of intent with "God willing?" I used to ask myself this question. That changed in the summer of 2002.

 I was a new mom, struggling to adjust to sleepless nights and no time to myself, when it became clear that I would have to return to work. Never in my life had I considered being a working mother. In fact, I'd had many discussions in which I had said, "There is absolutely no way I would work when I had small kids." But circumstances were against me. I had no other choice, if my family were not to starve or otherwise fall apart.

 Eating my words 


Going back to work was perhaps the most difficult thing I have ever done. What would people think? Would they call me a hypocrite? Would they think I was a closet feminist?

As I read Self-Abandonment to Divine Providence by Fr. Jean-Pierre de Caussade, I had to face the fact that God’s will–at least His permissive will–could be different from mine on such a major issue. I had to let go of my will. When I did, I found a measure of peace.

Continue reading.

10 May 2013

Jacob and Esau contemplative homeschool unit

File:Matthias Stom - Esau and Jacob - WGA21805.jpg


I have been blogging lately about my method of contemplative homeschooling. Here is an example of a unit I did a few years ago with my boys on Jacob and Esau.

The best way to start these units is for you (the parent) to meditate on the Scripture passage you will study with your kids. In this case, prayerfully read Genesis 25:29-24, 27:1-40. Since this passage is long, you could spread your meditation over 2-3 days or choose a smaller portion of the text to meditate on.  Identify the main elements or themes of the story that speak to you and use them as part of your studies.

The themes I chose for this unit were twins, telling the truth, and comparing and contrasting. (I created this before I began starting each unit with my prayer time.)

Narration: Read "Esau and Jacob" from The Golden Children's Bible aloud. If you have a different Bible, use only the parts of the story that correspond to the sections of Genesis noted above. Have your kids narrate it back and you write their narrations. Children 10 and up can write their own.

Copywork/memorization: "The Truth will set you free" (John 8:32).

Find the rest at Contemplative Homeschool.

Looking for Life: Enceladus and Gliese 1132 b

We haven't found life on — or in — Enceladus. But we've found organic compounds in the Saturnian moon's salt-water geysers. Sc...