Friday, November 28, 2008

You are of value......

I subscribe to which is a VERY short daily meditation for Catholics sent via email, but really you don't have to be Catholic to get something from it. Many days I have skipped over it...which it just silly, everyone needs a little me time, and its amazing how few words can touch your inner being and inspire or lift you up.

Today's was awesome, so I am sharing it with my blog followers who are all magnificent.....

We are made in the image and likeness of God. Our soul magnifies the magnificence of God. We are God’s work of art. Accept yourself, none of us as humans are perfect. We are of value.

Consider the story of the $100 bill -
As a brand new $100 bill, it is worth $100.
As a crumpled old $100 bill, it is still worth $100.

Your value is never diminished, no matter if you have sinned or if people have hurt your feelings.

Be Still Read Chew On It Listen Dialogue Close With Praise and Thanks

I needed to hear that today!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

So Thankful.....

Its been a good day in our household despite the Hand Foot and Mouth disease Sarah picked up which was diagnosed yesterday. Its really just a virus, but is contagious so we stayed home instead of going to my sister's as planned. I didn't want to expose my dad who is 82 and in assisted living as our pediatrician told us to keep her secluded the next few days.

I am proud of myself as I threw together quite the nice little feast in less than 24 hours notice. We had Turkey - I actually had a butterball turkey roast in my freezer so just used that and boy was it good, mashed potatoes, stuffing...yeah I cheated it was just stove top which is easy, green beans - the frozen ones you steam in microwave...this would be the healthy portion of our meal, Sister Schubert's rolls....umm umm, and a pumpkin souffle....actually the recipe was for sweet potato but I just substituted the pumpkin as I had a can in the pantry, it was QUITE good also. I purchased 2 pieces of frozen pecan pie and some ice cream which we will have for dessert. I know pecan pie is HORRID when it comes to nutrition, but I figured 2 pieces were better than buying a whole pie. Sarah loved the mashed potatoes and pumpkin.

I have been thinking of what I am thankful of and here is my list........

* My CAT scan came back great, no sign of heart disease. So to stay healthy its up to me in my diet and exercise which I am working on, well not so much the diet today.

* My husband...I have a good one. He is kind, loving and supportive of me. He is loyal and a great provider for our family.

* Andy's job......I am blessed I can stay home with Sarah and am grateful Andy has a job he likes that seems to be stable. I am also thankful should something happen, he has got GREAT development skills so even if he loses his job in this economy which in unlikely right this second, but you never know, he should be able to find something...even contract.

* My friends.....I have been blessed through the years with great friends. Wonderful people just keep coming my way.

* My faith......I am blessed I can worship as I want in this great country of ours. I thank my family for how I was raised, I thank my teachers at 12 years of parochial school for contributing to my faith and knowledge, I thank the many wonderful priests who have been wonderful Shepards for me....... most esp Fr Kenny RIP.

* My family in heaven....I am trying not to focus on what I don't have lately and have realized the people I have known and loved that have left this life have truly been a blessing to me. I miss my Mom, sister Mary Beth and Jack my brother, but boy were they a great family to be around when they were here......and of course my sweet Caleb, in the 8 days he was on earth I learned more about myself and my family with Andy than I have in many years.

* The fact I bought size 10 jeans last week....sure this is superficial...but a year ago I bought a size larger and they were TIGHT as the10s are now. The new 10s look good, but there is a little muffin thing going on, so I have to wear the right tops to hide that....BUT Andy said they look great. I know with a little work, they could be baggy and that is my goal.

So that is all I can think of.....

Happy Thanksgiving! May your families be blessed this holiday season.....may we all focus on the real meaning of Christmas and not get bummed with all the commercialism.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

What a man Wednesday......yes, another Brit!

You know, I have been told by many I have beautiful eyes. According to the JJ man of the week and I quote.... "The sexiest part of the body is the eyes. Corny, but that's what I believe. They're what connect us as human beings." Well, let me tell you , this is one sexy guy...... A little trivia, I am exactly one week older than him. LOVED him in the films Inside Man and Children of Men.

I give you Clive Owen....

Saturday, November 22, 2008

True confession

Yesterday I went WAY over on my calories and I did not exercise....nor did I exercise today, but the calories went well. Ok, I feel better.

Its official....I LOVE hospitals

I had a Coronary CAT Scan yesterday. At my physical, my doctor told me while not covered by insurance, he thought with my family history and my age it would probably be a good idea to check and see if I have any signs of blockages.

Background.....Mom died of heart attack at the age of 54, brother died of heart attack at the age of 52. Both smoked and my mother had high blood pressure. I quit smoking 10 years ago, and all my vitals were good at the physical but to be safe I decided to pay the money and do the test.

I had to go to the hospital....and was actually looking forward to the test. I had it at Piedmont - I have a lot of history with this place so I always like going there anyway as the people who wore there are so nice. I checked in and was taken back to imaging pretty quickly. I undressed from the waste up and put on a hospital gown - which you know I don't mind wearing. When I layed on the table they put a warmed sheet on top of me.....see this is one of the things I LOVE about the hospital, heated sheets. When would someone do that for you at home...... ummmmmmm NEVER. Anyhoo, they raised me up and slid me under the imaging device to get a good look at my heart and the arteries around it. They are looking for any calcium buildup or blockages.

My doctor will call me next week with the results....which will indicate if I am at risk for heart disease, ie if there are any early signs it has started. When that big old CAT Scan device started whirring away, I was SO relaxed and fascinated with the whole thing. I could get a report back I am ok, and everything looks great, I could get a report that there are some signs that things are looking not so great. He could tell me to take a low dosage aspirin daily, put me on some kind of medication, refer me to a cardiologist, or do nothing. Whatever the outcome I am glad I did it as I have to take care of Sarah and am hoping I will be around to see her graduate.

On my drive home I realized I LOVE going to the doctor and hospitals. I don't mind tests, or being poked prodded or stuck. I don't mind the gown. I love the attention and being taken care of. I have had experience with hospitals in my family.....and when I was pregnant with both Caleb and Sarah had hospital stays. After I delivered Sarah, I didn't want to leave....the nurses were so nice and helpful and I didn't need to worry about anything. I had many prenatal visits to the OB and Perinatolgist when I was pregnant with Sarah and LOVED going to the office, I looked forward to it. I have had the same dentist since I was 8 and you know I like going to see him also. Maybe its just I get a few minutes to just sit back and let someone take care of me in some capacity. And though I don't see my general practitioner often, he is the best...what a nice doctor!

Now with my realization of my affection for hospitals and healthcare do I WANT to end up in a hospital.....of course not. I thank God for my health as much as I remember, but I have to say, I certainly don't mind going at all. I am hoping my test shows that I am good and don't need to do anything other than eat healthy and exercise, which I am working on daily.

May God Bless all the health care workers in this country. I have been so blessed to have had some excellent care, so I ask a special blessing for those who have so wonderfully treated my family and me.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Boulder Stream

I was challenged on a message board I frequent to post a picture of the 6th pic in the 6th folder of pictures on my computer and describe it.
The year, 2002 in July, Andy and I went to Colorado for vacation. We were driving around in Boulder when we came across a pretty stream and a some rocks with people rockclimbing so we stopped to get out and look.
The water was incredibly hear you have boulders in Boulder. :-)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Umm Umm Crockpot Italian Chicken

Its cold here in my neck of the woods and I have been craving something hearty and comfort food-ish....... which won't be too bad on my diet. My cuz Lyn gave me this recipe which she found on Spark People.....MAN it is GOOD!!!!! I served it with some brown rice and broccoli and we had a salad with lettuce, cucumbers, bell peppers, grilled asparagus, a little Feta and my FAVORITE dressing Trader Joes Goddess. What a DELISH time, i will serve over the yolkless noodles or some whole wheat pasta. Might add mushrooms to the sauce also. I cooked it on high and it was fine....I used a little more water than suggested also.

So here it is.....Slow Cooker Italian Chicken....EASY to made, yummy to eat.

Just to clarify for the questions below:
First, YES the cream cheese is figured into the totals...if you use FULL FAT cream cheese, the fat content will be considerably higher. But low fat cream cheese really takes the fat down.Second, I haven't ever tried it with regular Italian dressing...let me know how it turns out!Third, I HIGHLY recommend using the low setting for allows the juices from the chicken to really seep into the dressing.

*1.5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
*1 pkg Good Seasons Italian dressing mix
* 1/4 cup water
* 1 8oz pkg low fat cream cheese
*1 can 98% fat free cream of chicken soup*3 cups cooked white, long grain rice

*1. Place chicken in crock pot
*2. Mix together Italian dressing mix and water. Pour over chicken.
*3. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours OR low for 8 hours.
*4. Mix together cream cheese and soup in separate bowl.
*5. Carefully remove chicken from crock pot to plate.
*6. Pour cream cheese/soup mixture into crock pot and mix together with dressing in bottom.
*7. Return chicken to crock pot and mix gently to shred the chicken.
*8. Cook on LOW until heated through.*Serve with rice or noodles.

**You may add skim or low fat milk in very small quantities to thin the sauce a little. It does not significantly affect the nutritional value if you use up to 2 tablespoons
**Makes 6 servings. Approximately 2/3 cup mixture with 1/2 cup rice.This recipe can be made with FAT FREE cream cheese and it saves about 6 grams of fat. However, I feel that the dish benefits from the flavor of the low fat over the fat free.

Number of Servings: 6

Nutritional Info
Servings Per Recipe: 6
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 327.2
Total Fat: 9.9 g
Cholesterol: 93.6 mg
Sodium: 712.8 mg
Total Carbs: 24.1 g
Dietary Fiber: 0.9 g
Protein: 32.9 g

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

What a man Wednesday.......Amish Farmer, Russian Maffia and Protector of Middle Earth

Our man of the week started his film career as a young Amish farmer in Witness....... An accomplished horseman, he purchased the horses he rode in Hildago and Lord of The Rings after the films were completed. Along with being a fine actor, he is a painter - you can see his work in the film A Perfect Murder, photographer - has shown his work in NYC , jazz musician -3 CDs and writes poetry in his spare time. What can't this dude do? I caught a glimpse of him the other night while channel surfing in the film Eastern Promises...which was on too late for me to watch....and thought...."Wow he is one beautiful man, he is the next JJ Man of the Week".... I will admit, I don't love Lord of the Rings, as a matter of fact I went with my darling husband and each one thought...when is this going to end. Not that it was BAD, just not my thing and those were some long movies. I much prefer a cleancut guy anyway to the long haired ranger dude in LOTR. Anyhoo....

I give you......

Monday, November 17, 2008

44 Things I Love About Being Catholic...#7 Incense

Again the numbers have no significance as far as what i love the most...

I love the burning of Incense to symbolize our prayers going up to heaven.....though when pregnant, it kind of made me sick to be honest. I love all the pomp and ritual the priest goes about swinging the censer around. A priest a my church once commented that his seminary prided themselves on how they could cloud up the congregation with incense. I say the more dramatic the swing, the better.

On Mondays I pray in my church's adoration chapel for an hour each morning, and the past 2 weeks I noticed the unmistakable scent of the incense. No nothing divine or miraculous there were funerals in the church and incense is used as a part of the funeral rite. When I had that whiff last week, I was still pretty deep in my grief for Fr Kenny and that aroma reminded me to pray for the repose of his soul and for his family, friends and the staff at the be eased in their (and my) grief. Then I was reminded of the image of my prayers, sweet requests rising to the aromatic smoke from the incense rising from the censer. The Holy Spirit in me, burning in my heart as the incense was....

Yes, I know in my youth I would do the dramatic holding of the nose with the PU face to my mom as it can be quite strong, but I suppose I have grown to appreciate this beautiful gesture. Actually Roman Catholics aren't the only ones who use incense, but I like it when we do.

I learned tonight in the Book of Revelation incense symbolises the prayers of the saints in heaven - the "golden bowl full of incense" are "the prayers of the saints" (Revelation 5:8 cf. Revelation 8:3) which infuse upwards towards the altar of God.

To the saints.......All you Holy Men and Women Pray for Us!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Mystery Shell

Yesterday I went to the cemetary for a little visit. On Caleb's marker, someone had put a shell. It was a pretty half shell. I wonder where it came from.... perhaps someone who is a family friend thinking of Caleb, or someone who happened to be moved to see such a small child buried, or perhaps one of the workers put it there after finding it thinking it was a good place.

Regardless, it was nice seeing someone had put it next to Caleb's name. I checked back in the photo I took of the marker at the All Souls Day mass and that shell was nowhere so its definitely a recent addition, and a welcome site. We were given a shell at Caleb's baptism.

I decided to look up the significance of the shell as a faith symbol.......

Scallop shell: the sea shell, especially the scallop shell, is the symbol of Baptism, and is found frequently on Baptismal fonts. The dish used by priests to pour water over the heads of catechumens in Baptism is often scallop-shaped

It has been used for centuries in the Catholic tradition as a symbol for pilgrims. Pope Benedict XVI has a scallop shell at the point of honor on his coat of arms.

The shell has several symbolic meanings. First it refers to a famous legend about St. Augustine, Bishop and Doctor of the Church (354-430 AD). Once as he was walking along the seashore, meditating about the unfathomable mystery of the Holy Trinity, he met a boy who was using a shell to pour seawater into a little hole. When Augustine asked him what he was doing, he received the reply, “I am emptying the sea into this hole.” Thus the shell is a symbol for plunging into the unfathomable sea of the Godhead. It also has a connection, though, with the theologian Joseph Ratzinger and the beginning of his academic career. In 1953 he received a doctorate in theology under Professor Gottlieb Söhngen at the University of Munich by completing a dissertation on “The People of God and the House of God in Augustine’s Teaching about the Church."

Furthermore, the shell also stands for “Jacob’s staff,” a pilgrim’s staff topped with a scallop shell, which in Church art was the symbol of the apostle James (in Latin, Jacobus). In this sense, the symbol alludes to a central concept of the Second Vatican Council, the “pilgrim people of God,” which the theologian shepherded locally as Archbishop Ratzinger and of which he is now, as Benedict XVI, the universal shepherd.

SO even though Caleb is gone from this life, it was nice to see that symbol of his birth into the Catholic faith in his baptism. Its a nice reminder of the wonderful life he now is experiencing while we schlep along down here.

Caleb, pray for us! We want to be with you again someday.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Diet/Fitness....Yep, here we go again.

I realized lately I have been in a funk and trying to make things better with bad food....fries, cookies, etc. My clothes are not as loose as they used to be either. I can't tell you the last time I exercised. I have seen a few recent pics and lets just say I am not happy with how things are looking lately.

SO here I go again. I am going to start getting up before Sarah Cate and getting my exercise in. This will also make me tired to go to bed at a decent hour, I have been staying up way too late.

I logged into SparkPeople and will use this online tool to help me keep up with my new fitness goals and keep track of my diet a little better.

I feel like a broken record, I know what to do, but for some reason have a very hard time with follow through. This is a tough time of year so its a great time to focus on health I think.

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

What a Man Wednesday......Cowboy and a Jarhead

Sometimes I wonder if the fact a 40 something woman can look at a 20 something man and he is a little wrong. But alas, I have to give props to one hot 20 something.. Granted, the JJ man of the week is in his upper 20's and I think he is a great actor - so its not JUST about good looks. He is totally adorable, another blue eyed brunette beauty. What an incredibly nice face - you just want to cuddle up with this guy. In my younger days, I think with his looks and demeanor, he would have been on my top 5 list and I would have had a mad crush on him. Note, I don not really like facial hair, so I prefer the clean shaven version. A former lifeguard, looks great wet

I give you Jake Gyllenhaal.

Monday, November 10, 2008

2006.....2007.....2008.... A Day in The Life

Things sure do change quickly and time has flown by!


Sunday, November 9, 2008

Happy 2nd Birthday Sarah Cate

Dear Sarah Cate,

Thank you for 2 of the best years of my life. Thanks for giving me all your smiles and hugs, especially when I start to wonder if I made the right decision staying at home with you. Thanks for giggling and running and laughing. I love being with you all day and hanging out with you. I love reading you George and your favorite Little Golden Books...The Counting One and the One About God. Its so cute how you LOVE wearing hats and your hoodie with the hood up.

I never imagined how fast time would go by. It seems like just yesterday that you were born. This past year you started walking, running, mastered steps and jumping. You learned the joys of The Wheels on the Bus and Ring Around the Rosie. You became fearless at the playground. Your contentment at just pushing something around the house or yard - your little lawnmower, your wagon and now your doll stroller - makes me smile. I love hearing you talking to yourself when you are looking at your books.

Your birthday was a beautiful of the prettiest we have had in a while. The sky was clear as can be and the fall leaves were gorgeous. I am glad we got to spend a little time at the Duck Pond where your mom used to play when she was a girl.

I love you more than I can express.


Saturday, November 8, 2008

A Boy Named Joe.............

**** kleenex alert *****

I recently joined facebook which is a great way to reconnect with people you haven't seen for many years. I joined at the suggestion of one my AGD sorority sisters and sure enough I started reconnecting with other Ga Tech AGDs.

One of my friends and sisters is named Sharon. Sharon was one smart cookie at Ga Tech,....she really blew me away academically, well most people did at Ga Tech to be honest - I am just proud I graduated. I noticed on her picture she looked GREAT pretty much the same as in college, which was back in the 80s so its been a while. She commented that her kids were keeping her young.

I noticed in her profile she posted a website on youtube, so I decided to watch it. Its a beautiful video about her son Joe entitled "My Disabled Son Joe - Tetrasomy 8p + Mosaic Down Syndrome - Part 1 - Medical/Life". What touched me the most is that this boy was not supposed to make it and asked twice if she wanted to terminate her pregnancy and she said No. I know from my sister Mary Beth, that any child that is not "normal" can bring so many blessings to a family.

I thought I would share Joe's story with you. I can only imagine how its been being Joe's mom, with his diagnosis and constant medical care. I am sure its been an emotional roller coaster at times, but I know from my family what a blessing it is to have the perspective of someone who is not "normal".

Sharon, thanks for your leap of faith and for sharing your journey and your lovely family.

To see Joe's story, click here.

Friday, November 7, 2008

44 Things I love about being Catholic.... #6 a simple prayer

I love The Sign of The Cross......where you say, "In the name of the Father" you touch your forehead, "the Son" as you touch your sternum and the "and the Holy Spirit" as you touch each shoulder. Follow with a big AMEN.

This is a visual and verbal prayer acknowledging the God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit...the Trinity using the visual of the cross which Jesus died for us on.

The sign of the cross is probably one of the most used sacramentals of the church. Probably most familiar, its used to start and end prayers and when blessing one's self with Holy Water. When I was in grade school we were instructed to make this sign when we heard a a blessing for those in the car/truck/ambulance and for those they were going to help - I still do it sometimes, probably need to do it more! Sometimes when I am trying to think of a prayer, I will just sign myself - as the simplest of prayers.

I came across an optional prayer to pray after signing yourself, said to be favored by St. Benedict which I think I might give a whirl:
By the Sign of the Cross, deliver me from my enemies, O Lord.

I must admit there are times when I lack boldness in my faith when it comes to signing myself in public. NOW, I don't think there needs to be this big dramatic motion for it to be an effective prayer, simple is always good....but I guess sometimes we don't want to stick out as "one of those people" and it takes courage to do a simple sign of the cross.

I came across this from Saint Cyril a Bishop of Jerusalem which I am now reflecting on and thinking, I need to be bold to honor my God:

Let us not then be ashamed to confess the Crucified. Be the Cross our seal made with boldness by our fingers on our brow and in everything; over the bread we eat, and the cups we drink; in our comings in, and goings out; before our sleep, when we lie down and when we awake; when we are in the way and when we are still. Great is that preservative; it is without price, for the poor's sake; without toil, for the sick, since also its grace is from God. It is the Sign of the faithful, and the dread of evils; for He has triumphed over them in it, having made a shew of them openly; for when they see the Cross, they are reminded of the Crucified; they are afraid of Him, Who hath bruised the heads of the dragon. Despise not the Seal, because of the freeness of the Gift; but for this rather honor thy Benefactor." -- St. Cyril of Jerusalem, A.D. 315 - 386

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

What a man memoriam

I know normally Wednesday is my fun day on JJ, but as I get ready to go say goodbye to the body of my dear friend Monsignor Thomas Kenny, I wanted to honor him one last time - please indulge me.

Rest in peace Fr Kenny, you will be missed here. Thanks for everything you did for me and my family and many many families and priests in the Archdiocese of Atlanta. You told our family many times of the joyous homecoming when we depart this life, I am sure there is one fabulous celebration for your arrival into Heaven.

Eternal Rest Grant Unto Him or Lord, and Let Perpetual Light Shine Upon Him

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

JJ Election Poll Results are in.....

Its Palpatine Vadar by a landslide!

OK, just kidding, its a close one. So far McCain is ahead just barely....too close to call until tomorrow AM.

I will be so happy when this circus of an election is done. Its time for change. Whomever wins, I will be praying for your leadership of this great country.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Hope Does Not Disappoint

I attended a special Mass today celebrating the Commemoration of All Souls...which was technically celebrated yesterday on the church's liturgical calendar, but this was a very special mass. Every year the past 25 years, a mass has been celebrated at the cemetery where my loved ones are buried. They are in the catholic section which is a hill. On top of the hill is a Cross and an altar where Archbishop Wilton Gregory con celebrated the All Souls mass with retired Archbishop Donoghue and many priests.

Today was a GORGEOUS day. Dry clear fall air. Barely chilly, but enough to remind it was fall and GLORIOUS. The service was in a word, phenomenal....yes, it was JUST another Catholic Mass, but it was very special. This mass was celebrated for the intention of the repose of the souls of all the deceased priests, deacons and lay people of the archdiocese.....we said the mass to remember and honor the departed AND to help pray all these people to heaven.

First of all when I see the gathering of the brethren of many priests, I am moved beyond belief. I grew up as the daughter of the church secretary, so I got to know many wonderful holy men as friends of our family and witness the outpouring of God's love through these shepards. The life of a parish priest is very tough...they deal with many family situations along with financial and business issues with the parish. They give up the opportunity to have their own family as the parish becomes their family. Their job is not just 9 to 5. The altar at the cemetery is actually surrounded by the graves of many of the deceased priests our family welcomed in our home for dinners and counseled our family through sad and hard times. Brought back many memories of my mom working along side these men, playing bridge and having them over for dinner. I also remembered how in first grade when the priest walked in our classroom we all stood up and said "Good.....insert Morning or Afternoon....Father" in unison. Our family grew up with priests as friends and it was an honor to pray for them today.
Down the hill from where we celebrated mass, I visited with my deceased family members after the mass was done including..... Caleb my sweet baby boy,
Mom, Mary Beth my beautiful sister and Jackie my big brother. I know they are not here breathing or walking, but it was kind of cool to know that I went to mass with them today....not just in spirit, but just up the hill from where their bodies rest in peace. I put some little pumpkins on Jack and Caleb's markers and some new flowers on Jack and Mary Beth. I prayed for them during mass also, along with so many people in Atlanta who have passed on to the next life.

There was a group of nuns from the Mother Theresa order in their white and blue gowns in attendance also. The most beautiful site I think I have seen in a while was them walking the grounds after the mass, reading the names of the departed on grave markers while praying the rosary aloud. Surrounded by the blue blue sky and colorful fall leaves on the trees it was heartwarming to see these sisters praying for the souls of those whom they did not know. I followed along for about a decade of the rosary with them - that's 10 hail Marys, feeling very humbled at the sacrifice and service these women have made.

After that I went over to the Babyland section of the cemetery. This is the section many choose to bury babies after losing and infant or pregnancy. I know many moms whose children are buried there. Its a very peaceful place with a memorial brick walk - from where I saw the brick at the top of this post "God Shall Wipe Away All Tears from Their Eyes". There are 2 pretty angel statues in this section, I really like this little angel, and not much is known about her I have heard.

Archbishop Gregory reminded us today as in the second reading from Paul's letter to the Romans 5:5-11, that our Hope in the Lord indeed does not disappoint. We all have a heaven just waiting for us, and while we are sad in our grief in the loss of our friends and loved one, there is eternal joy and peace just waiting for us.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Eternal Rest grant unto him, O Lord and let perpetual light shine upon him

This past week, the pastor at my old church Christ the King Monsignor Thomas Kenny passed away unexpectedly at the age of 69 in his sleep. He was the pastor at CTK for almost 20 years. He first came to Atlanta from Ireland in 1965 when he was ordained as a priest. My mom worked as the church secretary and Fr Kenny became a life long friend and support for our family - I was only 1 when we first met. Everyone in my family loved him, especially my grandmother, she really lit up when we went to mass or saw Fr Kenny as we called him at his request.

He had this way of making you feel like you were the most important and welcome person at church....he made everyone feel that way. He always had a smile and a warm greeting. He had a wonderful memory also, he knew and remembered everyone. He was there for my family in our family losses and hard times.......and in good times in weddings, birthdays, baptisms and family parties.

I am so grief stricken - it has me surprised quite frankly at the depth of my sadness in his passing. I know he wasn't a part of my daily life since I no long go to CTK, but I knew he was there. I loved sending him a Christmas card and was so happy that he sent me a lovely note in return. I feel as though he was my last connection with the church I grew up at. I was baptized at Christ the King, went to grade school and received all my sacraments there. My parents were married there as was I by Monsignor Kenny. My wedding day was WONDERFUL and the fact that Monsignor Kenny celebrated the service and married Andy and I made it so special, it was a very personal wedding. Andy proposed to me in California and after I called my father the next morning to let him know I was engaged, the next person I called was Fr Kenny to get him to give me a date off his calendar. My dad is now living in an assisted living facility and does not go to Christ the King. After I married we moved out of the parish and I started going to St Andrew, which I do love, but you know I spent most of my life at CTK.....and Fr Kenny was a big part of the many ministries and roles I served. He made you want to help the parish out and to be be a better place....and he was so grateful.

Its hard for me to grasp that I will never see him again. I have been meaning to go to mass at CTK with Sarah so I could show her how big she has gotten. Thankfully, last year I was in a bible study at Christ the King and ran into him so he got to see Sarah Cate. I am really sad, and while its understandable I had no idea his passing would hit me this hard. Its yet ANOTHER reminder not to take anything or anyone for granted and that EACH DAY IS PRECIOUS.

There is joy in knowing he is off this crazy planet and out of this mixed up world. I am sure he went straight to Heaven as he was truly a saint on earth. How wonderful that he is with our Lord, Jesus, the Blessed Mother Mary, all the saints......and those whom he helped Shepard. I need to focus on that and to remember that I can be with him again....its up to me.

God Bless You and Keep you Fr Kenny. Thank you Lord for giving us such a dear man, a true example for us all of sharing Your love with others.

Eternal Rest Grant unto Him O Lord, and Let Perpetual Light Shine Upon Him.

Fr Kenny at my wedding July 2003....... helping lead me from my dad to my soon to be husband, and leading us through our vows with a huge smile all the time.