Sunday, September 30, 2012

A Prayer for the Win

        Like Luke said earlier this week, UC's marching band went to DC for our football game this weekend. It was a close, intense game. The lead was traded back and forth throughout and both sides put up a great effort. UC ended up securing the win with 13 seconds to go. In those few seconds before the last touchdown was made, I put my hands together and made a short, informal prayer for the win. Although it is a small and, compared to many other things, fairly insignificant thing to ask for or gamble on, a lot of people do it. After the screams and cheers started to die down, my friend next to me said how she just prayed that we would win. I thought it was funny that we both did that, and as I found out later, a bunch of people did. Why do we pray when it comes down to the end? Not just in the end for a game winning touchdown, but in the end as in when we are stressed, pushed into a corner, afraid, confused, or unsure? People put a lot of faith into God's answers and praying is the outlet for that hope; praying brings us comfort. 
There have been times when I get really stressed, often overly so, and asking God for help and support gives me the strength I need to get through it. Giving Him thanks or asking Him to watch over me also brings me comfort. There have been so many times when I get a bad feeling or a wave of anxiety rushes over me and I bless myself with the Sign of the Cross for comfort and I feel protected, like He is watching over me through whatever I am facing. Just recently I went go-kart racing, as in 40+ miles per hour go-kart racing, and I was a little scared in the minutes leading up to our race. There was a training and safety video that we had to watch before the race and we had to put on real racing helmets and even a neck support. I don't like feeling like I'm not in control with things like that, especially after a bad skiing accident about two years ago; I am a lot more aware of what can happen and have to take care of my head, neck, and back more. I just had a bad feeling about going through with it. Sometimes I know I am overly worried and that it is going to be fine, I'm going to make it through, but I just can't stop the tension building in my core. In those moments I bless myself and I feel His presence and am put more at ease. Of course this is not an excuse to get a bad feeling about doing something, yell YOLO, and do it anyways. It's just something that helps me through those moments when I need an extra push or the presence of peace. It can even be as simple as knowing He's there for you during a class presentation or before doing something a little out of your comfort zone that you know will benefit you or others. 
         How do you feel His presence in your life? Does prayer bring comfort to you in the difficult times?  


Saturday, September 29, 2012

Everyday Miracles

I don't know about all of you, but this has been a long week. Nothing was particularly difficult about it, or trying. It was just long, and I was thrilled when the clock read 4:00 and I could leave work yesterday. I was absolutely exhausted.

I fully intended to go home, get to bed early and wake up "bright-eyed and bushy tailed" for Fall Getaway today. Instead I took an opportunity to meet some family friends' new baby. As I was driving over all I could think about was dropping off the gift I'd bought, chatting for a bit, and heading home. But as soon as I got there I knew God was using this opportunity as well. As I watched the proud parents, and the even more proud grandparents (if that was possible), I knew I was witnessing a little miracle.

My family is incredibly important to me, and I've always known that I was so incredibly blessed that my parents loved my siblings and me, and each other as much as they do. My brothers and my sister are some of my most favorite people on Earth. And as I watched the family scene play out before me, God was showing me how incomplete my life would be without them, and what a gift children are to us. Babies are all the best of the past and all the promise of the future. They are born every day, and every day God is bringing a miracle to fruition. Last night was His way of bringing some awe back into my life--something I desperately need most days.

How does God remind you about His everyday miracles? What makes you "stop and smell the roses" where His grace is concerned?

Have a blessed and safe weekend,


Friday, September 28, 2012

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” Philippians 4-13.  This was the saying I found written on my bathroom mirror this afternoon when I got home.  My roommate strolled by my room later that night and asked “is it okay that I wrote the mirror?” I politely said yes but was thinking to myself “thank you.”

It seems like God has always had a way of sending signs to me that are in flashing neon lights. This week I found myself pondering the question “can I do this?” And by this, I mean school, work, all of life’s ups and downs.  I am sure that everyone has felt these pressures closing in on them and shooting anxiety levels through the roof. 

When I saw this verse today, it was like a wakeup call. I get so wrapped up in my daily life that I forget the one thing that matters most; my faith.  It is crazy how imbalanced life gets when I don’t say my “Good morning sweet Jesus,” my “Bless us o Lord,” and my “Our Father.”  But that is what is so humbling.  God will always have a never ending love for each of us. 
I guess it sometimes takes bright orange words written on bathroom mirrors to realize that something is not right.  Thanks Katie =)

Thursday, September 27, 2012

An Eternal Shoulder to Lean On

Today’s Responsorial Psalm is from Psalms 90.  This Psalm talks about how our lives as humans are short and frail, but God is forever.  On this day 4 years ago a friend of mine, Jordan, died in a car crash.  This event shook me and made me realize the message of this Psalm.  Sometimes it is scary to think of how frail we as humans really are, and that God may one day call home the ones we love and those whom we surround ourselves without a moment’s notice.  Though, it is important for us, as it was for me, to remember that when a time like this does occur the Lord is our rock and our fortress.  He is the one we can always turn to for guidance and support.  While we may be sad, or angry, or even numb to feeling, God is our refuge now and for all of eternity. 
Lord, you have been our refuge through all generations.  Before the mountains were born, the earth and the world brought forth, from eternity to eternity you are God.  A thousand years in your eyes are merely a yesterday, but humans you return to dust, saying, “Return, You mortals!”
- Psalms 90:1-4

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

A Dose of Culture

Hello again everyone,

So as I mentioned in my last post, I am a proud member of the University of Cincinnati Bearcat Bands. This weekend the UC football team will be obliterating the Virginia Tech Hokies at FedEx Stadium in our nation's capital. I will be watching this game in the stands and playing during the pregame and halftime show along with two other members of this post, Kathe and Katie. I am still in denial that I am leaving this Friday to stay in beautiful Washington D.C. and play trumpet in front of millions of people. However, aside from the hype of the football game, this weekend also has some spiritual meaning to it as well.

About 2 or 3 years ago, my family and I traveled to Washington D.C. on a spring break trip. We did all the touristy things that all families and school groups do in D.C. We saw all the monuments and went in all the museums. However, the most vivid memory that I have of the trip was not the amazing displays of our nation's history, it was not even the national cathedral (even though that was pretty cool), it was Sunday morning mass that my family attended. The church was like any other church, it was simple, yet quaint. However, once in side, I realized that it was anything but simple. I saw people from many different cultures in the pews. We started talking to the people sitting next to us, and we found out that the congregation directly around us was from places such as Vietnam, the Phillipines, and various areas of Africa. It almost brought tears to my eyes to see all these different people from all over the world gathering to celebrate mass.

Now for a little lesson on theology. The word Catholic comes from the Greek word Katholikos, which originally meant universal. In the early days of the Church, many people started referring to the people who followed the ways of Christ as Catholic because they could be found everywhere in the Roman Empire. Romans thought everyone must be Catholic. However, today the word Catholic means much more, it is understood as a word that describes the Church as a place where no one is excluded because nationality, race, economic or social status.

After mass had concluded, I realize how Catholicism is really universal. There are people all over the word that are Catholic, and the Church accepts all of them, even though they might be different.

So as I begin packing for the 8 hour journey to D.C., I have a challenge for everyone, including myself: Try to go out of your way to help someone out who you would normally ignore because they are different than you. I will admit that many times I will see someone that is homeless or of a different culture, and ignore them. Then I think, is that what Jesus would do? Catholic might describe the Church or your faith, but does it describe you?

Go Bearcats-


Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Is This a Sign?

About two weeks ago, after talking to a friend, she sent me this from Deuteronomy: "Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you, He will be with you, He will neither fail you nor abandon you."  It was something I desperately needed to hear.  How cool is it that God personally goes ahead of me?  Of all the people in the world, our God has the ability to meet me on a personal level and faithfully travel the path not only with me, but He is trailblazing.  So don't be afraid about the future, because God is already ahead of you.  He already has it under control.  I wrote it down on the white board I have in my room and have looked at it ever since.

I should probably tell you that I almost never notice when God sends a sign my way.  I do believe that He sends us signs, I just always miss them.  But I don't think I miss them because I'm not paying attention.  I think the issue is that I always consider it a coincidence.  So, I'm going out on a limb here and saying that I think last night I got a sign from God.  In almost every Catholic store you can find little cards (the size of like a credit card) that has your name at the top, what your name means, and a scripture verse.  It was something I received when I made my first communion and pinned it on the bulletin board in my room.  I've had this thing since the second grade.  It's been easily visible in my room for years.  But I couldn't tell you the last time I read it.  Last night, though, I found myself reading this verse from Joshua that was on my name card: "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest."  It reminded me so much of the one my friend sent me just a couple of weeks ago and at this time in my life, it's a message I needed to hear again...and will need to hear again and again.  How crazy that I could have easily had this verse memorized since it has been hanging in my room but I haven't really read it until last night?  I think God just really wants me to remember this message of courage and His faithfulness.

The skeptic and doubter in me is telling me this is probably just a cool coincidence.  But another part of me thinks it might be a sign...something God is really trying to tell me.  That's one of the hardest parts about having faith - when it comes down to it, you really never know for sure.  But you have to take that leap anyways, ignore the skepticism, and really believe in something you cannot see.

Until next time,


Monday, September 24, 2012

I Dare You

The other day, I was watching TV and saw a commercial that used the tag line “I dare you.” It reminded me of the game “Truth or Dare” that is popular/everyone thinks is so cool in grade school. Thinking back, I can’t help but laugh at the outrageous tasks people came up with as “dares.” I was never a fan of the dares myself, almost always choosing the truth option. As I was contemplating all of this after seeing the commercial, it made me think about the concept of a dare a little more. What really is a dare? It is much more than a task designed by children to embarrass their friends, and it doesn’t have to be ridiculous or silly.  

A dare is a challenge. To dare means to venture, to have the boldness to try, to face something courageously. Now that I’m older, I see that I encounter dares every day. These dares do not come from my peers this time, but from God. We live in a world that is full of sadness and hurt, anger and arrogance, selfishness and greed. People forget to love, to take time out for the little things such as watching the sunset or saying “thank you.” They forget what is truly important in life, and they do things to help themselves instead of others. It can be difficult to rise above all of that, but God dares us to do it anyway. He challenges us to be loving and giving of ourselves, to smile at strangers, to have faith and seek out the good in life. He pushes us to extend a helping hand even when it’s not convenient for us, to search for His beauty in an imperfect world, to bring happiness to those around us. He dares us to boldly and courageously live out His Gospel every day of our lives. It’s not going to be easy all the time, for it is, after all, a challenge, but we have many things to help us along the way. We have scriptures, the Mass, each other. And best of all, we have God. He is with us every step of the way. When we feel like we are not up to His challenges, He supports us and gives us encouragement to keep doing our best. Even when we fail, He is there to help us get back on our feet and try again.  

There’s a quote by Mother Teresa that sums all of my thoughts up rather nicely: 

"People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway. 
If you are kind, people may accuse you of ulterior motives. Be kind anyway. 
If you are honest and sincere, people may cheat you. Be honest and sincere anyway. 
What you spend years building could be destroyed overnight. Build anyway. 
If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway. 
The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway. 
Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough. Give your best anyway.
For you see, in the end, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway."

So, I'll leave you with some questions to ponder. What is God daring you personally to do? What is He asking you to add to the world? How will you work to meet His challenges? 

God bless,

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Post-Mass Post

               Hi, my name is Katie and I’ll be your post-mass poster. Yes, I am quite good with jokes and humor. I am a fourth year psychology major at the University of Cincinnati and I’ll be graduating this spring. I am not yet certain of what my future holds for me; I have been waiting for a sign from God for some time now to lead me in the direction I’m meant to go, but I have faith that He’ll let me know my purpose when the time is right.

               I am a member of the Bearcat Bands here at the university and I have been very involved with that organization. I play the trumpet so I’m obviously awesome (just kidding), but it is great to be able to be more connected and involved around campus through the band. I enjoy living and learning here and I am so proud to be a Bearcat. Being in band, I am a person who is passionate about music. I believe it creates emotion, brings people together, and serves a purpose greater than the ink on the page (kind of like good writing).

               I had not made my Confirmation before coming to college. I felt a calling throughout high school, but that only grew during my first couple of years here. A close friend of mine encouraged me to go to Mass with her at St. Monica-St. George and everything seemed to come together for me to take the step to further my faith journey. The experience of making my Confirmation last year through the RCIA program deepened my faith and involvement with the church. I hope this blog can be that close friend to you when you need it. I want you to feel the close community, the connection here with our posts that I felt in church when I needed it. This is an open space in which you can talk to us and comment on your experiences and thoughts and know that we are right there with you in this journey. 

Have a peaceful and relaxing Sunday, 


Saturday, September 22, 2012

For Your Weekend Entertainment

Hello Everybody!

I'll be your trusty blog posting gal for Saturday. Allow me to introduce myself. 

Who I am:
I'm Clare, in my fourth year at UC in chemical engineering. People thinks that makes me a nerd. It doesn't. I make me a nerd. :) I enjoy reading, Pinterest, watching nerdy television, collecting shoes and paperdolls, oohing and aahing over puppies or babies, hanging with my friends. 

Where I come from:
I was born and raised Catholic by two of the very best people. My parents are my examples for how to live good and faithful lives. They also gave me four siblings who are the exact same kind of weird as me. They are my best friends, my confidantes, my heroes. As if God could bless me more, I have a raucous, outrageous, wonderful extended family who would do anything for me. I come from Cleveland, and yes, I do love it. And the lake, and the terrible sports. I won't hear a bad word against it.

My mother has always said to remember who you are and where you come from. I think this is especially important when I am far away, as I know some of you are. It's not easy being Catholic, as I'm sure you know and will see through our blog posts. Unfortunately, ease of use was not a gift of the Holy Spirit. I have a feeling that throughout the reading of this blog, you'll start to see your struggles are not unique in nature, though perhaps in practice. You are not alone. 

I really want to encourage all of our readers to come back everyday. Each author has so many different things to offer you, and our voices and points of view are so diverse. I also would love to have comments & questions. I'm no expert, but my nerdy side does love some research now and then. 

Until next time, keep fighting the good fight


Friday, September 21, 2012


Hello All!  My name is Dana and I am a junior in nursing at the University of Cincinnati. I am very excited to share with you my spiritual journey this year every Friday.
I have one sister and two brothers.  I love my family more than I could ever describe.  I know they will always have my back.  I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis when I was two.  Swollen knee, limping, and awkward stares is something that I have learned to live with a long time ago.  My RA is a part of who I am.  I have a very special place in my heart for every child that has a chronic disease and their peers do not understand.

I think I tend to come off as a serious person, but I love to sing in the car at the top of my lungs when no one can hear me. I catch myself dancing in the elevator hoping there are no security cameras.  I am incredibly clumsy  and I have have my share of blonde moments.

I like to play piano in my free time.  I love listening to music.  It has a way of putting me in a good mood, even when my day has been not so good. I am in love.  I believe that everything happens for a reason; every person is strategically placed in our lives for us to learn and grow. 

I look forward to all that is in store for this blog and for the school year.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Welcome to Thursdays

My name is Brent.  I am a fourth year aerospace engineering student at the University of Cincinnati and I will be providing you with your daily dose of spirituality and peace on Thursdays. 

A little bit about me:
I was born and raised in a small farm town in NorthWest Ohio.  While I am not doing school work or participating in one of the many St MoGo events, I enjoy being in the outdoors fishing and camping.  I would say I have a rather unusual personality.  I love doing outdoors-ie  and manly man things, but I also am a true nerd at heart.  I love country music, but have a soft spot for musicals and the performing arts.  I am a person who listens more than I talk.  I like to give real thought to what I say instead of saying everything that comes to mind. 

I am very excited to be a part of this blog and am looking forward to growing spiritually with you as it progresses.

- Brent

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


Hello, my name is Luke. I am so happy that I have the amazing opportunity to be a part of this blog, where I will be posting every Wednesday. The purpose of this first post is to let all of you know a little about who I am and what I stand for.

First off, I am a second-year student at the University of Cincinnati, majoring in Biomedical Engineering/Pre-medicine. With this major, most of my time is dedicated to classes and homework. Sometimes all of the work can stress me out, but I try to be an optimist, and look at the bright side of the situation at hand. I also trust that God will guide me in the right direction through hard times. Aside from classes, I spend a lot of my time playing the trumpet with the University of Cincinnati Bearcat Bands and helping out at the St. Monica-George Newman Center. Any time that I have left is usually spent hanging out with friends.

I have no idea where life will lead me, but I hope, one day, that I will be able to conduct research that will lead to a cure to neurodegeneration, or the loss of neurons in the brain. Both of my grandfathers had forms of dementia, and I saw how it affected their lives. My goal is to combine faith and science to find successful therapies for individuals who suffer such disorders. However, I do not see myself finding any such advancements in the near future, so I continue to pray and keep my faith strong.

I can be soft-spoken and shy, but I always try to lend a helping hand if anyone is in need. During my time at UC, I hope that I am able to grow both intellectually and spiritually, and I hope that you will join me on this journey. I am sure that I will be able to learn as much from you as you are able to learn from me.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Next up!

Hello fellow bloggers =)

My name is Mel and I will be posting on Tuesdays.  I can't tell you how excited I am to get this blog up and running and to see how God will use this space, our posts and our comments.  As a Secondary Math Education major, writing does not come easy for me but I surprisingly find it extremely therapeutic - it's always helpful to spend time reflecting on God's goodness and where your heart is.  I'm in my fourth year at UC and next year I will be student teaching.  I love to golf and read books and I spend way too much time on Pinterest.  I am not a procrastinator and I am almost obsessively organized.  You should probably know that I think Mother Teresa is one of the wisest people ever.  I teach Sunday school at my home parish and I am a "Big Sister" mentor to Shalon, a spunky twelve year old.  I can't wait to travel America and play golf in all 50 states and to have my passport stamped as I see the beauty beyond my homeland.

Life is a crazy journey of ups and downs but with each day there are millions of reasons to smile.  When life gets hard, I believe in loving harder.  I am a huge fan of nature walks and taking time to be distracted by God's beauty.  I believe every person is extremely valuable and special and has something to impart on the world and I feel so blessed when I have the opportunity to learn from them.  I believe that a day without laughter is a day wasted and never going to bed angry.  I believe whole heartedly that God has a plan for my life but I find it a challenge to trust that He is really guiding my steps.  I believe that we are all called to love passionately and without restriction.  And I am almost always brought to tears knowing that I am forgiven when I fail.  I believe in dropping everything for the important things in life and offering encouragement where you can.  Life is beautiful and I love living mine!

I can't wait to travel this blogging journey with all of you and to be encouraged by your words, takes on life, and what God is doing in your lives.  So comment often and share your ideas!

"How do we love?  Not in big things, but in small things with great love." Mother Teresa

Until next time,

Monday, September 17, 2012


Hi everyone! My name is Kathe, and I am very excited to be starting out on this spirituality journey with all of you! I am a third year at the University of Cincinnati studying biomedical engineering. The first post this week is supposed to introduce all of us to you, so I decided I would share some of my beliefs with you:

I believe in always looking on the bright side, and that a rainbow follows each storm.  I believe music is one of the purest ways to display emotion, and that you shouldn’t judge someone unless it’s to better your image of them. I believe in saying “thank you,” and that my family will always be there for me, something I’m immensely grateful for.  I believe in dancing in the rain, and getting up early to watch the sunrise. I believe smiles can change lives, and that we are here to make the world a better place. I believe in true love that lasts forever, and that it is better to hope than to despair. I believe everyone needs their own personal cheerleader, someone who always believes in them and stands by them. I believe the death penalty should be illegal, and in saying “God bless you” when someone sneezes. I believe Disney movies are enjoyable at any age, and that global warming is a natural process but is sped up by humans. I believe that everyone has something positive to offer the world, and that you should always strive to see the good in others. I believe sleep is a waste of time, but sadly necessary, and that everyone should be CPR trained. I believe in integrity and standing up for what you believe in, and that God sees us through all our struggles. I believe in the power of prayer, and that miracles really do happen.

“I am searching for a purpose. God, where do I go next, what path will my life take? I am waiting for direction, itching with anticipation and excitement. Here I am, God, ready to make a difference. The world is at my fingertips-just show me where to go.” I hope that everyone enjoys this blog, and that each of you takes something away from it. I know that I will definitely grow closer to God through this experience, and I hope that you will too!

God bless,

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Into the blogosphere we go!


We at St. Monica-St. George Newman Club have decided to try something new--blogging! We're very excited about it. The first several posts will introduce you to our contributors so you can get to know who will be sharing their thoughts and insights with you.

Stay on the lookout for the first "real" post very soon.