#rootedinhope photos & videos

2 days ago

Photo Opportunity! Living Hope is going to update their website and social media with new graphics and photos of our members so we can highlight the awesome folks here at Living Hope! Stop by Springhill Suites before or after worship to get your picture taken. Sunday, September 27th and Sunday, October 25th #sharehope #livinghopechatt #hopeforeveryday #chattanoogachurches #chattanooga #ooltewah #eastbraineredtn #rootedinhope

50
3 days ago

Every marriage has its “moments.” That’s why marriages need moments of encouragement and refreshment. Marriage Moments are short, weekly videos highlighting one Biblical marriage thought accompanied by a discussion question. Starting in October Living Hope will post these weekly videos. #sharehope #rootedinhope #hopeforeveryday #livinghopechatt #chattanoogachurches #ooltewah #chattanooga #eastbraineredtn #marriagemoments

50
5 days ago

Thank you God for blessing Living Hope these past 2 years. So much fun hanging out with this family of believers. #sharehope #rootedinhope #hopeforeveryday #livinghopechatt #chattanoogachurches #ooltewahtn #chattanooga #eastbrainerdtn

130
1 weeks ago

Join us there’s still time link in our bio #rootedinhope

40
3 weeks ago

Living Hope is what we call a 'church plant.' We're planting a new church in a new place so people can get planted in the hope of Jesus. But how do we know when we've really been 'planted?' Join Living Hope on Sundays to delve into what it really means to be a planted church. 10am at Springhill Suites in Ooltewah. #sharehope #rootedinhope #livinghopechatt #chattanooga #ooltewah #eastbraineredtn #springhillsuiteschattanoogane #chattanoogachurches

70
4 weeks ago

La Familia is calling for artists to create a signature piece for our 45th Anniversary event happening next month. More details available on our website. #ROOTEDinHOPE #RISINGinACTION #art #creatives #community #history #reflection #virtualevent #nonprofit #CesarChavez #RonDellums #JohnGeorge #livelafamilia

251
4 weeks ago

FOUNDATIONS COURSE TESTIMONY! Read what Clay and Dee have to say about taking the course: "It was wonderful to spend time with Eric and Jennifer. It enabled me to grow closer to y’all. I was always amazed at how every session I learned something new. I have spent lots of time in church and in Scripture during my life, yet every time I learned something new." Comment, DM, or email pastormelso @livinghopechatt to sign up for a Foundations class today! We're so thankful you found Living Hope and took the time to take the Foundations Course. What a blessing it is to share God's Word with you. #sharehope #livinghopechatt #foundationscourse #chattanoogachurches #chattanewbies #chattanooga #ooltewah #eastbraineredtn #rootedinhope

71
4 weeks ago

This is a great reminder to me that despite the anxieties of life, “the LORD has done great things for us,” and I have so much to be grateful for; Psalm 126 is full of hope! ... Wishing you hope-filled weekends all! 🔆 . . . . . . . #psalm126 #psalms #encouragement #withgod #watercolorart #watercolor_art #watercolorflorals #autumnflorals #surfacedesign #stationery #wallart #homedecor #rootedinhope #rootedartists #dswlicensing

11128
last month

grateful for this gift🍃 . thank you so much for this beautiful diffuser bracelet & what a week for it to show up! the beads are exquisite!! our community is so generous & just everything! . #communityovercompetition #thecoctribe #rootedinhope #diffuserjewelry #diffuserbracelet #grateful #thankful #oilymama

687
last month

☝🏽That's what we're about! So if you haven't signed up yet for your F R E E magazine copy coming October 2020, head over to the link in our bio for quality lifestyle resources of praise-worthy recipes, gardening tips for beginners, home decor on a budget, and other practical inspo! . . . . . . #lifequotes #rootedinhope #lampandlight #theartofslowliving #petitejoys #cultivateameaningfullife #livesimply

60
last month

In my parents house there is an antique cabinet stuffed to the brim with old family photographs - relatives and friends from generations past, many of whom died before any of our present living family members were born. What little we know about them is from a family story or two that has been passed down, the details threadbare and any real knowledge of their lives here on earth mostly forgotten. The true testament to their lives, however, lies in those of us who, without consciously knowing it, carry on their legacy through the faith and values they instilled and passed down to their children and their grandchildren.  It’s similar to what we know of St. Bartholomew, whose feast we celebrate today. We know almost nothing about him other than he was one of the twelve apostles, responding affirmatively when Philip invited him to “come and see” whether anything good could come out of Nazareth. Bartholomew remained with Jesus throughout His earthly ministry, and following Jesus’s Ascension, he remained obedient to Christ, proclaiming the Gospel to all nations.  Pope Benedict XVI said of St. Bartholomew, “[He] stands before us to tell us that attachment to Jesus can also be lived and witnessed to without performing sensational deeds. Jesus himself, to whom each of us is called to dedicate his or her own life and death, is and remains extraordinary.”  Today, rejoice in your littleness and embrace the hidden life in Christ. Through your daily act of surrender and your continual fiat in whatever vocation God has called you, your life, though seemingly unremarkable by the standards of the world, is transformative for generations and millennia to come. St. Bartholomew, pray for us!   #stbartholomewprayforus #saintoftheday #praylikethesaints #feastingwiththesaints #dailymassreadings #catholic #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #amdg 

555
last month

I’ve been reminded several times this week of the importance of my vocation of spiritual motherhood in addition to my vocation of physical motherhood, and today’s Mass readings brought this home once again.  The gates of hell shall not prevail against the Church. This is a promise from Christ! And yet, in God’s “inscrutable judgment and unsearchable ways,” He also requires our cooperation to bring His will to fruition. “When I called, You answered me,” the Psalmist writes in today’s responsorial.  God strengthens us and provides us with all we need - but we must be receptive to it. He has fixed the perfect cornerstone and given us His own saving shield - but we must use it. We have every reason to hope and trust in Him, and the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church, despite the turbulence and chaos of the world and the scandals within, will persist to the end of the age - but we must defend Her.  Our Lady warned at Fatima that the last great battle would be waged against our priests and the family - this makes sense from Satan’s perspective, for without priests, we lose access to the Sacraments. Today, let us redouble our efforts in our vocation of spiritual parenthood (for we are all called to be spiritual mothers and fathers regardless of whether we are also called to be physical parents ) and pray for our priests, bishops, and the Holy Father.   #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #catholicwife #catholicfamily  #domesticchurch  #motherhoodreflections #apostolateofholymotherhood #dailymassreadings #amdg 

917
last month

Rooted and Established In today’s message we explore how we can be rooted and established in hope through the power of the Holy Spirit! Join us and be encouraged! (Follow the link in the bio or look us up on our Mid Antrim Vineyard YouTube channel! ) #midantrimvineyard #faithhopelove #family #churchonline #church #churchplanting #vcuki #rootedinhope

220
last month

In today’s Gospel, Jesus tells the parable of the Wedding Feast. It’s not what I might call an uplifting reading - the invited guests refuse to come, ignore the invitation, and finally kill the King’s servants. Finally, the King instructs His servants to invite anyone they find. When the banquet hall is finally filled, the King notices a man not dressed in wedding garments. Upon questioning the man, He instructs His servants to bind the man and cast him into the darkness outside.  I’ve been pondering this reading all day. How often am I like the invited guests to the wedding feast, simply refusing to come to Jesus when He calls? How often am I like those who simply ignored the invitation? How often, through my sin, do I murder the King’s Servant in my heart?  And even when I do heed His invitation, like the man in the parable, I don’t even have the proper garments! I have nothing, I am nothing — without Him. What keeps me from being bound and tossed into the darkness is His grace alone. If I could fully internalize that Truth and live it - what would my life look like?  God IS love, and He loves each of us so much more deeply than we can ever fathom. He knows we are weak and unworthy - and so He simply asks that we remain in Him. St. Bernard of Clairvaux understood all of this, and it filled him with the fire of the Holy Spirit and an unquenchable zeal for holiness - a zeal that manifested itself in love for others. Through the intercession of St. Bernard, we ask that you make us holy, O Lord.    #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #stbernardprayforus #saintoftheday 

583
last month

Growing up Southern Baptist instilled in me a great respect for Sacred Scripture. When we were little, we would do “Bible drills,” seeing who could find a certain book or verse the fastest and memorizing scripture each week. We often joked about how Catholics didn’t know their Bibles (and I have heard many Catholics joke about this, as well! ) - “They don’t even bring their Bibles to Church on Sunday!” we laughed. Of course, when I became Catholic, I realized nothing could be further from the truth. Catholics DO know their Bibles and understand them more fully because we have the benefit of both Sacred Tradition and millennia of infallible interpretation by the Magesterium to more fully illuminate what we find in Sacred Scripture. And moreover, through daily Mass attendance, Catholics cover the entirety of scripture in the course of about two years, reaping the benefits of hearing that same Scripture read in rhythm with the liturgical year (as opposed to simply hearing whatever verse of scripture happens to speak to the pastor on any given day, as in many Protestant denominations ). That said, I realized earlier this year that it had been literally YEARS since I had physically opened my Bible. Relying instead on digital versions of the daily Mass readings and apps, I had neglected something else the Catholic Church teaches so well: the power of finding God through the use of all our senses. Incense, beautiful stained glass, the soft glow of candles, the feel of the Rosary beads, the chanting of ancient hymns, the Eucharist itself - God knows that we humans need physical means of touching Him and sensing His presence. And while there is nothing inherently wrong with using digital versions of Sacred Scripture, there is also some mysterious, intangible value to physically opening up God’s Word, gently turning the pages, underlining, journaling, and sketching in the margins the revelations we find there. Jesus is the Word made flesh, and one place we find that Word is in Sacred Scripture. Let me encourage you today to physically open the Word, and get to know it! Allow Him to speak to you through it.

7812
last month

“[The Solemnity of the Assumption] is Mary’s harvesting home. Like a bountiful crop, she is being gathered in. . . . [The tradition of filling our homes with fruits, vegetables, and flowers on this Solemnity] speak of the fullness of life and fertility that is Our Lady. Mary gave life. She brought forth the Savior of the world, the fruit of her womb. . . . St. Catherine of Siena wrote of Mary that ‘you have given us of your flour . . . The Godhead is joined and kneaded so thoroughly into our humanity that this union can never be broken, neither by death nor by our ingratitude.’ Give thanks for the one who shared her flour with us, and ask her to help us on our way.” - The Catholic Catalogue    #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #catholic #feastingwiththesaints #praylikethesaints #assumption #amdg 

511
last month

A couple of years ago, when I was deep in the throes of resentment and struggling with forgiveness, the name Jane kept coming to me. It seemed to pop up everywhere - in novels, in quotes, in random conversation. Then one day I turned on EWTN in the car, and a lady was talking about her confirmation saint, St. Jane Frances de Chantal. She told the story of how St. Jane had struggled for years to forgive the man who accidentally caused her husband’s death, but was eventually able to overcome her resentment and forgive the man so completely that she eventually became the godmother of one of the man’s children.  I instantly felt a deep peace wash over me, and I knew in that moment that the reason the name Jane kept coming to me unbidden was because St. Jane had befriended me and was praying ardently for me in Heaven. Eventually, with the help of the intercession of St. Jane, I was able to find forgiveness and overcome the resentment I had been struggling with for years. If you want to read more about my struggle with resentment and forgiveness, I wrote a blog post about it last month - link in bio if you missed it!  Do you have a story of a saint who sought you out? I would love to hear it! Let me know in the comments 👇🏼  St. Jane Frances de Chantal, pray for us!    #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #stjaneprayforus #feastingwiththesaints #praylikethesaints #stjanefrancesdechantal 

5313
last month

St. Lawrence was the ultimate cheerful giver, fully embracing Jesus’s call in today’s Gospel to lose his life in this world in order to preserve it for eternal life.  Born in the third century Spain, Lawrence went on to serve Pope St. Sixtus II in Rome as one of the city's seven deacons and was responsible for the care of the city’s poor. During the persecution of Christians by Roman Emperor Valerian, Pope Sixtus II was executed. A Roman prefect vowed to spare St. Lawrence's life if he would turn over the Church's treasures to the Emperor. In response, St. Lawrence presented the official with the poor of Rome, saying,"Behold in these poor persons the treasures which I promised to show you; to which I will add pearls and precious stones, those widows and consecrated virgins, which are the Church's crown."  The prefect was so incensed that he ordered St. Lawrence to be executed immediately on a gridiron placed over a bed hot coals. According to legend, after suffering on the gridiron for some time, St. Lawrence cheerfully declared: "I'm well done on this side. Turn me over!"As such, he is the patron saint of cooks and comedians.  Even today when, in many parts of the world, persecution is mild, the Christian life is not for the faint hearted. Christ asks all, and often when we feel as though we have hit our limit, He asks for more. Let us pray today through the intercession of St. Lawrence for an increase in charity, that we may cheerfully die to self so that Christ may live in each of us.  St. Lawrence, pray for us!    #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #stlawrence #feastingwiththesaints #saintoftheday 

641
last month

What is it about fairy stories that spoke to me so forcefully as a child and called me still as an adult? And not just me, but countless humans throughout the ages, from the dawn of time? What is it that makes these tales and archetypes so compelling? Even more interesting, how is that so many of these tales contain great similarities that seem to defy time and culture?  In this blog post, I suggest that there are no "stories." Instead, there is really only one story, the greatest story, and it is the Christian story of salvation. So let me tell you a story... Click the link in bio for more!    #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #catholic 

862
last month

“[I]n order to make an action pleasing to God, the following conditions must be fulfilled: First, the action should be sincere and perfect; second, it should be humble and without selfishness; third, it should be steadfast and enduring. If these conditions are found in everything you do, then you may be sure you are working for heaven.”  Happy Feast of St. Jean-Marie Vianney, a 19th century French priest who was a great advocate of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, frequently spending up to 16 hours a day hearing confessions. The standard of Christian behavior St. Jean-Marie sets forth in this quote is a difficult one, but it is no more difficult, of course, than the standard set by Christ, Himself (Be perfect, therefore, as your Heavenly Father is perfect. Matthew 5:48 ).  How are we possibly able to achieve this? On our own, we simply cannot. And both Christ and St. Jean-Marie know this, which is why the former instituted the Sacrament of Reconciliation and the latter was such a devoted advocate of it. “Incurable is your wound, grievous your bruise,” says the prophet Jeremiah. And yet, the Lord promises to restore the tents of Jacob - and not just restore them, but to make them a palace on a hill, allowing us to stand firm before Him (Jeremiah 30 ).  When you fall, throw yourself in humility wholly upon Him. Seek Him in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and be rejoined to His loving embrace. The Lord is for us, who then can be against us? So long as we seek Him constantly in sincerity and humility, we, too, may walk in the path of salvation He has traced for us.  St. Jean-Marie Vianney, pray for us!    #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #dailymassreadings #dailyscripture 

630
last month

FRIDAY FOUNDATIONS TESTIMONY: Read what Melody has to say about taking the Foundations course. "It was refreshing to go over the basics of the Christian faith and to ask the questions that I had tucked away in the back of my mind. I wanted to know why I believed certain things and if they were trustworthy beliefs to build upon. I highly recommend going through Foundations whether one is new to the faith or has been a Christian for years." We're so thankful you found Living Hope and took the time to take the Foundations Course. What a blessing it is to share God's Word with you. Comment below, send a message or email pastormelso @livinghopechatt .com to sign up for a Foundations class today! #livinghopechatt #sharehope #foundationscourse #chattanoogachurches #chattanewbies #chattanooga #ooltewah #eastbraineredtn #rootedinhope

90
last month

“Great care must be taken to show forth orthodox truth in such a way that if any heretics happen to be present they may have an example of charity and Christian moderation. No hard words should be used nor any sort of contempt for their errors be shown.” - St. Ignatius of Loyola  Happy Feast of St. Ignatius! This quote touches on something that has troubled me for some time now - the lack of charity in sharing the faith (or even differing opinions ), particularly online. So much emphasis seems to be placed on “destroying” your opponent’s argument, winning at all costs. Even when we aren’t actively debating, we so often get “trigger happy” with our likes and reshares, rather than taking the time to think critically and discern whether even that simple and seemingly passive action truly furthers God’s Kingdom or simply adds to the noise and chaos.  YOU should be the reason someone wants to receive the Sacraments. Your words and actions should cause others to wonder at the source of your joy and peace and want to know its source. This should be reflected in every interaction, no matter how small — online, at home with your family, and in your community with colleagues, friends, and neighbors. Live every moment of your life in such a way that if someone struggling in their faith happens to be present, they see a model of true Christian virtue.  Ad majorem Dei gloriam—“for the greater glory of God.” Go forth and proclaim the Gospel today, friends!    #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #praylikethesaints 

9213
Jul 2020

Happy Feast of St. Martha, the original contemplative homemaker! Martha, the sister of Lazarus and Mary of Bethany (whom ancient tradition holds is actually Mary Magdalene - notice how their feast days are an octave apart! ), is probably best known for the somewhat less than flattering story told in Luke 10:28-32. Hosting Jesus in her home and burdened with much serving while her sister Mary sat at Jesus’s feet, Martha implored Jesus to command Mary to help her. Jesus replied, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things. There is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her.”  Martha apparently took these words to heart, for when she next appears in the Gospels, it is at the death of her brother Lazarus, and rather than falling into despair as a result of her circumstances, she instead professes a great act of faith. Ever active, Martha runs to meet Jesus while Mary remains at the house. “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that whatever you ask of God, God will give you.” Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live, and anyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” Martha replied, “Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, the one who is coming into the world.”  This is the conclusion all our activity should lead us to. Each of our daily thoughts, words, and deeds, even the most menial and seemingly insignificant, is a means to and end: the proclamation of the coming of the Kingdom of God. When ordered rightly, our lives proclaim the glory of the Lord with every breath.  Curious about what happened to St. Martha after the resurrection? Check out my stories for more!  //  Prayer:  Through the intercession of St. Martha, we pray that our activities may be a constant homage of love to Christ, our Lord. May we seek to serve Him only, finding our sufficiency in Him alone. Amen. 🙏🏼 

513
Jul 2020

Our family trees provide us with the wisdom of experience. It is our job to learn from them, to watch ourselves closely so that we do not forget the things our eyes have seen or let them fade from our hearts, and to teach these things to our children and to their children after them. It is our job to set the tone for the generations to come.  Read more on the blog! Link in bio 👉🏼   #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #domesticchurch #catholicfamily 

752
Jul 2020

Happy feast of St. Mary Magdalene!  There is still so much I could share about this wonderful saint and what she has meant to me, and perhaps I’ll do a blog post on it soon. But for now, I wanted to leave you with one last meditation, and that is of Mary Magdalene and the Blessed Mother.  After her “conversion,” so to speak, Mary Magdalene became a disciple of Jesus and spent a great deal of time with the Blessed Mother. It is from Mary that Mary Magdalene learned to ponder Him continually in her heart, throwing off her selfish, prideful ways in favor of humility.  When we look at the foot of the cross, what do we see? We see Mary Magdalene and Mary the Mother of God. It is the image of perfect contrition coupled with the image of perfect obedience, together consoling the Sacred Heart.  This is the image we need to imitate in our own lives. This is how we love Him who first loved us. Saint Mary Magdalene and Our Lady of Mercy, pray for us! 

1385
Jul 2020

“She has done what she could do.” Mark 14:8  These are the words Jesus spoke of Mary Magdalene after she anointed His feet with pure nard in Bethany a mere week prior to His crucifixion, a prophetic action that Jesus explained would prepare His body for burial.  It was an extravagant act of love and adoration - so extravagant, in fact, that some disciples, most notably Judas, considered it a wasteful folly. “Could not this perfume have been sold for more than a year’s wages and the money given to the poor?”  Think of that - a full year’s wages! Shattered and spilled over His feet in an instant. Didn’t Judas kind of have a point?  And yet, this senseless love, this love to the point of folly, is what Jesus asks of each of us each and every day. When we stop and remember, however, that the only reason we love at all is because He first loved us, with a love so senseless that it required His brutal death on the cross, is it really such a ludicrous request?  Yes, this is love and adoration of Him to the point of ridicule by the world is what He asks, but how is it that we generally respond, in the event that we remember to respond at all?  She has done what she could do. What is He asking you to do today?    #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #tradcat #marymagdalene 

790
Jul 2020

Blessed Catherine Anne Emmerich, a German Augustinian Canoness and stigmatist who was granted visions of Our Lord’s life, including His initial meeting of Mary Magdalene as well as her discovery of His resurrected body at the tomb, described Saint Mary Magdalene as “taller and more beautiful than the other women…robust, but yet graceful. She had very beautiful, tapering fingers, a small, delicate foot, a wealth of beautiful long hair, and there was something imposing in all her movements…”.  Before meeting Jesus, she was haughty and bedecked in finery, possibly associated with the court of King Herod and accustomed to grand entourages, wealth, and parties. As she passed Jesus, however, He looked at her “with a glance that pierced her soul.”  Prior to the fall in the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve felt no shame. They were content and safe in being fully known by God, hiding no part of themselves from Him, drawing their strength from Him alone. After the fall, however, appalled by their weakness and filled with shame, they covered their nakedness, hiding the most intimate parts of themselves from God and one another.  In a similar way, Mary Magdalene used the trappings of the world to cover her shame and to provide her self worth. Afraid of being truly known by God, she hid. Through that single glance, however, Jesus laid her soul bare, and instead of finding harsh condemnation and disappointment from Him, she found nothing but True Love. A Love that emboldened her to abandon her former life completely in order to embrace God alone as her portion forever.  Tradition holds that Mary Magdalene spent the remainder of her life in prayer and penance, making reparation for her own sins and the sins of the world. In art, she is often portrayed with a skull, a reminder of our own mortality and the need to place primacy on the things of eternity over the desires of this world.  Saint Mary Magdalene, pray for us! 

813
Jul 2020

In honor of my confirmation saint, Mary Magdalene, and her upcoming feast day next Wednesday, July 22, I’m continuing my series of posts on her today with what the Church’s oral tradition teaches about the end of St. Mary Magdalene’s life. Following the resurrection, Mary Magdalene, along with a large group of fellow Christians, including her brother Lazarus, her sister Martha, and St. Maximin, were exiled from Jerusalem in AD 41 during the earliest persecutions of Christians. They set sail across the Mediterranean Sea and arrived in what is today a little town in Provence in southern France called Saint Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume. There, in a grotto overlooking the surrounding forest (pictured above ), Mary Magdalene spent out the rest of her earthly days in silent prayer and adoration, sustained only by the Eucharist brought to her regularly by St. Maximin. After her death, a Basilica was erected near the spot, and her skull and bones are now venerated by thousands of pilgrims every year. In his essay written to celebrate St. Mary Magdalene’s feast day, Cardinal Sarah wrote: “St. Mary Magdalene seeks the Lord, and when she finds Him, she adores Him. ...Adoration takes first place. Mary Magdalene reminds us of the need to recover the primacy of God and the primacy of adoration in the life of the Church and in the liturgical celebration.” Mary Magdalene’s entire life is a testament towards responding to Christ through ever-deeper adoration. After Jesus cast 7 demons out of her, she did not hesitate, but left her entire former life to follow Him completely. At his crucifixion, she clung to Him still at the foot of the cross. Ever hoping, ever adoring, she was the first to the tomb and the first witness to the Resurrection (aside from, I suspect, Our Blessed Mother! ). May we, too, imitate her faithfulness, hope, and trust in Our Lord, always placing Him at the forefront of our lives, regardless of our circumstances. // Intercede, assiduous supplicans pro nobis, Jesu Domino, Maria Magdalena. Intercede and pray constantly for us Jesus, O Blessed Mary Magdalene. 📸: Nigelle de Visme

10611
Jul 2020

Happy Friday, friends! For this week’s #FridayIntroduction , I wanted to introduce you to my confirmation saint, St. Mary Magdalene, who’s feast day is next Wednesday! I’ll be doing a few posts on her over the next few days, and I also have something really exciting to announce on Monday, so make sure you check in then!  Mary Magdalene’s story has been somewhat muddled since the beginning. What we know for sure from Sacred Scripture is that after Jesus cast 7 demons out of her, she became a devoted follower of Jesus, accompanying Him, along with His Mother and St. John, to the foot of the cross. She then became the “Apostle to the Apostles,” the first witness to Christ’s resurrection!  Disagreement over her story primarily involves the interpretation of the Scripture passages concerning the two anointings of Jesus. The Western Fathers of the Church, including St. Augustine and Pope Saint Gregory the Great, believed that the sinful woman who washed Jesus’s feet with her tears and Mary of Bethany, the sister of Lazarus, who washed Jesus’s feet with perfume just before his crucifixion, both refer to one and the same woman: Mary Magdalene. This traditional view is also supported by the private revelations of Catholic mystics such as Mary of Agreda, Anne Catherine Emmerich, and Maria Valtorta.  The Eastern Church Fathers, however, believed these passages referred to three separate women. Further disagreement arose over the Western Church’s traditional teaching in the 16th century in connection with the Protestant Reformation and by some 20th century biblical scholarship, although some modern scholarship actually affirmed the traditional Western teaching.  The Church has no official position on this exegetical debate, leaving the faithful free to reflect and debate and to accept or reject the traditional understanding of Mary Magdalene’s story. Regardless of which view you ascribe to, Mary Magdalene is a true testament to the transformative power of God’s grace and mercy.  Check back tomorrow to learn about what oral tradition teaches with respect to what happened to St. Mary Magdalene after the resurrection! What do you think? Three women, or one? 

776
Jul 2020

Our pews and pulpits are filled with hypocrites. So what gives? What is the point of it all? If the Sacraments are supposed to be conferring grace and continually conforming us to Christ, why are so many of us such abysmal failures spiritually, despite our best and most sincere efforts? Where do we turn when the Sacraments stop working?  The answer, of course, lies not with any defect in the Sacraments, but instead in our own hearts. Check out the latest blog post (link in bio! ) for more.   #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #tradcat 

1044
Jul 2020

Which soil are you? Are you stony and shallow? Are you threatened with thorns? Or are you rich, deep soil, capable of producing a rich harvest?  It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking my heart is filled with good, fertile soil. But all too often as I sit in quiet prayer or scripture reading, tilling the garden of my heart, I kick over a fallen log or stone only to find hidden, putrid rot beneath. I think I’ve overcome a resentment, only to thrust deep and find my shovel stopped short by stone hidden just beneath the the surface.  The greatest saints often considered themselves to be the greatest sinners. This was not false humility on their part, but a very keen sense of the true horror of sin and the weakness of our inclinations that chokes off the growth of the Spirit within the soul. They realized that the spiritual life is a process of constant growth, and that our stony hearts needing continual watering, pruning, tilling, and weeding.  “I will give you a new heart and place a new spirit within you, taking from your bodies your stony hearts and giving you natural hearts.” (Ezekiel 36:26 ). “My word shall fall from Heaven as rain and snow come down, watering the earth, making it fertile and fruitful.” (Isaiah 55:10-11, paraphrased ).  These are promises of our God. He WILL give us new hearts, He WILL shower us with all the graces we require, but only if we have the humility and wisdom to hear, see, ask, and accept these gifts. This takes consistent commitment to prayer, worship, scripture study, and the spiritual and corporal works of mercy, even - and especially when - we don’t feel like it or feel like we’ve done enough.  Today, let’s pray through the intercession of Our Lady, Seat of Wisdom, for an increase in humility and wisdom to discern where our hearts remain stony and opposed to Him, that He may fulfill these promises in each of us and we may bear His fruit.  [Prayer in caption👇🏼] 

665
Jul 2020

Venerable Madeleine Delbrêl wrote “God gives us a day which has been prepared for us by him. There are no ‘too muches’ or ‘not enough’ in it. No part of it is neutral, no part of it is useless. It is a masterpiece of a day that he has just asked us to live. ...Each minute of our day, wherever we’re supposed to be and whatever we’re supposed to be doing, allows Christ to live through us in the midst of human beings. So there is no more question of calculating the effectiveness of our time…. We make our humble measurement of the will of God.”  There is no passive time in the life of the Christian. No time that is truly our own, for every minute, every second, every breath we take is a gift from God.  And how do we use these gifts? I’ll confess, many of them pass either completely unnoticed by me or, worse, get turned into moments actively contrary to the Spirit. I get caught up in chores, wander off down mental paths ruminating on the past or worrying about the future, get mired in self pity over the onslaught of daily frustrations. I go about my day on my own steam, completely forgetting that every second is from Him, an opportunity to give him my yes.  Whenever I read about the lives of the saints, I’m always struck by this entire giving of self. They were seemingly inexhaustible in energy and compassion, never thinking of themselves or their own comforts, but relentlessly giving themselves to others. It’s truly heroic, and it’s possibly only through complete cooperation with the Spirit. It’s also not just reserved for the Catherine of Sienas or the Padre Pios of the world - heroic sainthood is what is asked of us, as well.  Pray with me, friend, that today we may live each moment in Him, aware of what He asks, and totally dependent upon His breath that gives us life.  Prayer:  O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer You my prayers, works, joys and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of Your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, in reparation for my sins, for the intentions of all my relatives and friends, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father. Amen. 🙏🏼 

532
Jul 2020

I’ve spent the last several days feeling heavy in spirit and depressed by the news cycle, the seemingly relentless crush of oppression, bigotry, hatred, and violence from every side imaginable. I groped in the darkness for some sense of God’s peace.  Then, two things happened:  First, I received an unexpected call from the CEO of the Women’s New Life Clinic, a crisis pregnancy center and women’s health clinic based in New Orleans and Baton Rouge. Allison was full of hope and encouragement. Calls to the Clinic were up by huge percentages, and despite recent legal disappointments nationally in the pro-life field, women were getting the help they needed and babies were being saved.  Second, I woke up to this beautiful image and prayer to Our Lady of Sheshan from a dear friend, Erin. She, too, has felt the heaviness of evil lately, and no doubt inspired by the Holy Spirit, felt called to share this prayer as a reminder of God’s loving presence, even in the darkest of times.  St. Augustine wrote that true peace “is serenity of mind, tranquility of soul, simplicity of heart, the bond of love, the fellowship of charity.” Allison and Erin, moved by the fellowship of charity and bonds of love, helped remind me of this true peace.  Today, pay attention to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. If He calls someone to your mind, send them a text. Give them a call. Reach out and encourage and uplift one another! Don’t wait for a “better time” or write it off mentally as a fluke. By recognizing and responding in obedience to these small requests of the Spirit, you can help further the true peace of Christ in a world that feels increasingly chaotic. 

8217
Jul 2020

“Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.” But how do we forgive those who have hurt us deeply? How do we overcome the resentments caused by lingering pain, inflicted either by ourselves or others? Today on the blog, I offer a personal reflection on my own struggle with forgiving others and overcoming resentments in order to embrace a new freedom. Link in bio 👉🏼

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Top photos & videos on #rootedinhope

Jul 2020

Happy feast of St. Mary Magdalene!  There is still so much I could share about this wonderful saint and what she has meant to me, and perhaps I’ll do a blog post on it soon. But for now, I wanted to leave you with one last meditation, and that is of Mary Magdalene and the Blessed Mother.  After her “conversion,” so to speak, Mary Magdalene became a disciple of Jesus and spent a great deal of time with the Blessed Mother. It is from Mary that Mary Magdalene learned to ponder Him continually in her heart, throwing off her selfish, prideful ways in favor of humility.  When we look at the foot of the cross, what do we see? We see Mary Magdalene and Mary the Mother of God. It is the image of perfect contrition coupled with the image of perfect obedience, together consoling the Sacred Heart.  This is the image we need to imitate in our own lives. This is how we love Him who first loved us. Saint Mary Magdalene and Our Lady of Mercy, pray for us! 

1385
Jul 2020

Our pews and pulpits are filled with hypocrites. So what gives? What is the point of it all? If the Sacraments are supposed to be conferring grace and continually conforming us to Christ, why are so many of us such abysmal failures spiritually, despite our best and most sincere efforts? Where do we turn when the Sacraments stop working?  The answer, of course, lies not with any defect in the Sacraments, but instead in our own hearts. Check out the latest blog post (link in bio! ) for more.   #catholicsofinstagram #instacatholic #catholicism #catholicwriters #shewritestruth  #faithblogger #shespeakstruth #bissisterhood  #blessedisshe #catholicconnect #catholicblogger #rootedinhope #JMJ #tradcat #catholicwoman #admajoremdeigloriam #traditionalcatholic  #contemplativelife #romancatholic #tradcat 

1044
Apr 2020

I’m a hugger by nature, I really do wish I could hug the whole world right now. These last couple of weeks I’ve been a little quiet, taking a step back to observe and let some dust settle. And I guess what I’m seeing is that even in the midst of massive uncertainty, this collective reset we’ve all been forced to do has been good in so many ways. Hard, yes. But also good. Priorities and expectations are shifting more towards gentleness with each other and, even better, with ourselves. 🤍 . . So because I’m a hugger but can’t for the time being, I’ll try something similar but different. I’m looking to surprise a few people who need some extra love and light right now: anyone in the medical front lines of this pandemic, teachers, grocery store workers, delivery folks, single parents with young kids at home, mask sewers and makers, those without a job, you get it...basically anyone who really needs a big thank you, a hug, and/or a simple smile. . . To make this happen, tag your nominated person/s who fits this criteria in the comments below. If you’d prefer to private message me their name that works too. I’ll pick THREE nominated people and send them a candle along with a personalized note from the sender. I’ll be in touch with selected nominators for shipping info and details. . . Nominations end Tuesday 4/7 at 8pm PST. . . Thank you, friends. Keep your eyes looking upward and heart leaning forward. We got this. Ready set go. ❤️ . . #loveandlight #candlecommunity #hugsfromafar #bettertogether #rootedinhope #rootedincandleco

11323
Mar 2020

😳 More than ever before I've questioned my security. ⁣ ⁣ My security in an unpredictable world. ⁣ My security within murky circumstances.⁣ ⁣ Neither is exactly ideal. ⁣ ⁣ So that's what I've questioned: What do I secure my life in when hope seems lost? In an unstable world, is there some kind of back-up plan for the universe? ⁣ ⁣ It's not what we want to ask ourselves, but at some point we have to. ⁣ ⁣ If the world were to end, we'd all be pretty screwed. And THAT is terrifying. That's probably why we never come close to thinking about it, but in times like now, we're forced to question that life security. ⁣ ⁣ And if the end of the world came, I would want to know that my belief was strong enough to sustain me. My security cannot be in this world if it were to crumble and end. ⁣ ⁣ Thank God for God Himself - if you even believe in Him. I do - I have to - because there's just too much at stake if I didn't. ⁣ ⁣ But this pandemic has done more good in my soul than bad: it has shifted my focus from this current life to what will really matter after this - the life that God has promised will happen. He has promised those who choose Him a life after this one in which he will come to dwell among His people. ⁣ ⁣ That's why today I can live with a firm hope in my soul: My security is rooted in God's eternal plan. ⁣ ⁣ There's always a risk to the decisions we make and for me this is one of mine - risking not knowing God and not being prepared for Him when he comes.⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ #easter #jesusreturn #bedeeplyrooted #standfirm #rootedinhope #dailyencouragement #dailydevo #covid_19 #wewillnotbeshaken #storytellers #bloggers #writerscommunity #testimomials #coffeeandbibletime #morningdevo #dailyinspo #wellwateredwomen #wordbeforeworld #thedailygraceco #lampandlight #ownyoureveryday #forsuchatimeasthis #petitejoys #femalebloggers #theartofslowliving

1242
Apr 2020

Snug as bugs in a rug 🕯☺️. . . fresh asparagus, local fruit, in.credible cookies and pies, wine, cider, artisan soap, candles and more are available for pick up or delivery, just like this box here ^^ @johnson_orchards_yakima . 🍎 . . New batch of candles arrived this morning...spring and summer scents as we welcome this amazing weather 🙌🏻 . . Simply call Eryn Johnson at (509 ) 317-1935 for details and to place your order. 🍐 . . #supportlocalfarmers #yakima365 #yakimavalley #johnsonsorchardsyakima #rootedincandleco #pnwcandles #quarantinecandles #rootedinhope #rootedintogetherness

1378
Dec 2017

We are clearly winning at Advent already 😂 So far: 1 ) the candles we got last year are way too small at the base and are falling out of the wreath (so now we have to hope we can find new ones to buy this week😨 ); . . 2 ) I printed off all the Jesse Tree ornaments last night (and was really proud of myself for being prepared🙌 ) and realized it started on December 1 and not the 1st Sunday of Advent so we're already 2 days behind; and 3 ) I got my daughter's Rooted in Hope journal bound to make it special for her, and they delivered it 2 days late so we're behind in that too.😔 . . Seriously though, I just had to laugh! On the first day of Rooted in Hope in the planning section, it said, “I will let go of perfection in these ways...” It looks like 'letting go of my perfectionism' may be the theme of my Advent this year.😂😭 . . And so, I'm going to let it go. We won't light any Advent candles tonight. We'll have to play catch up – or just stay behind – with the Jesse Tree and kids' journal. But that's ok. This season is about waiting in joyful hope, not having everything just so. And that's what I'm going to hold onto this Advent.💜💜💗💜 . . Has anything struck you so far this Advent? Or with the Rooted in Hope journal? Please share! . Edited to add: we will try tin foil at the base of the candles - I don't know why I didn't think of that! Thanks for the suggestions!😂 . . . . #bissisterhood #projectblessed #catholicmoms #advent #advent2017 #csadvent #bisadvent #liturgicalliving #livingtheliturgy #adventwreath #firstsundayofadvent #rootedinhope #takeupandread #takeupandreadadvent #faithandflorals #ywcm

27364
Dec 2017

Raise your 🙌🏼 if you want a fun way to get into the Word this Advent! Here it is - a few of you said “yes!” to an Advent Lettering Challenge, so here we go! The real challenge to you is to let go of perfection and have fun. Let the Word lead you to explore new letter styles and compositions. Most of all, let the Word seep into your soul as you doodle and sketch. Tag me, and hashtag your work #rakstarchallenge #letteringlight ) so we can learn and grow and explore together! • As a bonus, these verses are taken from the daily reading for the Rooted in Hope study by @takeupandread . If you’re using this journal this season, this challenge can be an added facet of your contemplation. • If you haven’t chosen a devotional (or have never done one ), consider joining me for this Rooted in Hope study, or take a look at one of the many others out there like the one written by Laura Fanucci for @blessedisshe__ or the really brief/introductory one my husband and I put out through ACTA publications (link in profile ). It’s not too late to get started! You’ll meet Jesus more deeply no matter which you choose...and that’s the end goal, right? The pretty is just a perk. 😉❤️

12027
Aug 2016

our little hut at maguga lodge 🐘

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