Thursday, December 02, 2010

Today's Pick-Me-Up

I admit, I was succumbing to a bit of self-pity and restlessness the last day or two. But after 8am Mass this morning, that all changed.

I watched a sweet elderly lady balance herself and her cane against a pew to put on her scarf, and realized she must have come to church alone. I know her from seeing her regularly at daily Mass, but couldn't remember her name.

"Did you drive here all by yourself?" I approached, thinking to help her get to her car.

"Oh, no -- I walked," came the sweet reply, to my incredulous expression. (Mind you, it was all of 25 degrees F here this morning!)

"I've been told it's 18 blocks round-trip," she continued rosily while zipping her coat, "but I always tell people 14 because I don't like to sound like a show-off."

"And how old are you, again?" I queried.

"I'm 92 and —what's today?— 32 days."

She proceeded to kiss me goodbye on the cheek. "Love ya. And you have such a sweet dimple!"

That was just the inspirational kick I needed. Here is a precious lady who doesn't drive and who can barely walk steadily, yet who rises early on icy mornings to walk 8+ blocks one way to Church and who is always there on time... and here is 22-year-old me, who too many mornings (especially lately) weakly allows myself "just a few more minutes" under the warm covers and then arrives late to Mass.

The joyful witness of such fidelity moves me to strive for greater discipline this Advent, and reminds much I still need to learn about denying myself...

Thank you, Mary Ann! May your reward be great.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Divine Love

I wrote this as a comment on a friend's blog and thought I would share it here, too.


What does God’s love look like?

His love is manifest not only to our sight, but each of our senses given to us for the purpose of experiencing and taking in His goodness!

To me, the Divine Romancer expresses His love daily, vividly, enchantingly... in the passionate colors of a sunset... the engulfing power of the ocean... the caressing petal of a rose... the precious face of a baby... the piercing beauty of a line of quality music. Lovers often say, "I'd hang the moon in the sky for you if I could..." well, He can and DOES! :)

How do you know God loves you?

Countless, numerous ways, both big and small. I know that He called me into being from all eternity with a unique, individualized mission for my life. Every skill and talent I possess is a free gift from Him. And the God of the universe loves His people so deeply as to make Himself a prisoner of love in every tabernacle in the world, just to be physically present to us!

To look at the crucifix is the ultimate picture of love (I know a couple that chose to hold a crucifix during their wedding vows for this very reason!). And I am always moved by the image of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. When He appeared to St. Margaret Mary and she saw His heart aflame and pierced and bleeding, His words were: "Behold the Heart that so much loves man!"

When do you most feel His love?

When I receive Him sacramentally, when I spend time in His presence, gazing at the monstrance holding His body, and when I allow myself to marvel in childlike awe at the majesty of his creation. I know His love and see His smile when I look at the family and friends I've been blessed with, and when He answers very specific prayers! For example, yesterday we had a surprise outdoor 50th birthday party for my Mom. Thunderstorms were predicted, but I knew and trusted all along the the Lord (and His Blessed Mother, whom I often ask for help with details like this) would defy the forecast for us. We prayed with confidence, and the morning's rain gave way to pleasant sunshine in perfect timing for our celebration, which was blessed in every way! As the weather is something that is completely out of our human control, I'm very moved whenever the Lord grants a miracle like that!

I believe that the struggle is not in God lacking expression of His love, but in our failure to recognize it. As the convert, philosopher, and author G.K. Chesterton so wonderfully said...

"The world is not starved for lack of wonders, but for lack of wonder."

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Thursday, October 07, 2010

My Favorite Morning Offering

Eternal Father,
I offer You everything I do this day:
my work, my prayers, my apostolic efforts;
my time with family and friends;
my hours of relaxation;
my difficultities, problems, distress,
which I shall try to bear with patience.

Join these, my gifts,
to the unique offering which Jesus Christ, Your Son,
renews today in the Eucharist.

Grant, I pray,
that, vivified by the Holy Spirit
and united to the Sacred Heart of Jesus,
and the Immaculate Heart of Mary,
my life this day may be of service to You and Your children
and help consecrate the world to You.

Friday, August 27, 2010

"Love Is Not Tolerance"

What does it really mean to love authentically? How do we walk the fine line between tender and tough love? The great speaker and TV evangelist Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen offers timeless guidance in this poem...

Christian love bears evil, but it does not tolerate it.

It does penance for the sins of others, but it is not broadminded about sin.

The cry for tolerance never induces it to quench its hatred of the evil philosophies that have entered into contest with the Truth.

It forgives the sinner, and it hates the sin; it is unmerciful to the error in his mind.

The sinner it will always take back into the bosom of the Mystical Body; but his lie will never be taken into the treasury of His Wisdom.

Real love involves real hatred: whoever has lost the power of moral indignation and the urge to drive the buyers and sellers from the temples has also lost a living, fervent love of Truth.

Charity, then, is not a mild philosophy of "live and let live"; it is not a species of sloppy sentiment.

Charity is the infusion of the Spirit of God, which makes us love the beautiful and hate the morally ugly.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Of a boy and his lunch

Apparently, 'tis the week to enjoy small-boyish antics! ;) I have made various sandwiches for my brother David's lunches this week, and today when I asked mom what she'd like for lunch, he piped up, "Please, not a sandwich."

"But that is yummy bread, and with garden tomatoes..." I pointed out, "You should be grateful you can eat those things!" (I'm gluten-sensitive and allergic to tomatoes)

He comes downstairs to the kitchen a bit later and asks, "Where's my food?"

"Well, I was thinking of ham and cheese..." I answer. "But now that you're down here, you can make it yourself."

"Oh!" he reasons. "I guess I better disappear for a while. Bye!" He pops out the back door, but is inside again a moment later.

"Claire, are you making my sandwich?" (insert puppy dog eyes)


"Oh, thank you!" (He plants a kiss on my cheek and opens the fridge.) "Now in the meantime, I'm going to eat a, I mean, an appetizer!"

*Fast forward a few minutes*

David: (watching me prepare it) " ham and cheese."

Me: "But David, you don't like sandwiches."

David: "Um, I thought I didn't."

Few bites into the sandwich: "Claire, why didn't you tell me this would be a good sandwich?"

Three-quarters done: "You can make me a sandwich like this every day!"


Listen Up, World

The too-cute 4-year-old mentioned in yesterday's post is quite the character: he's blonde-haired, big-eyed, and closer to the size of a 2 year old, but will open his articulate mouth and talk like he's 22. :)

Francis prompts laughter and endearment continually, but this particular exchange from last night is too good not to document. His brother three years his elder had been doing a bit of name-calling, prompting me to pull him aside for a little talk. Francis was meanwhile standing behind me on the porch steps.

Me: "Joseph, would Jesus have talked like you did?"

J: "No. But why do we have to be like Jesus?"

Me: "Because if we do not act like Jesus, that makes our enemy happy. Do you know who that is?" (Very helpful: always capitalize on spiritual warfare when catechizing little boys) ;)

J: "The devil."

Me: "And the devil hates us. He doesn't want us to be happy. He wants us to hurt God, others, and ourselves."

Francis: (with hands expressively lifted) "And why would you want to listen to someone who doesn't even love you? That doesn't make sense!"

You go, little one. If only the rest of the world would figure that out, a lot of people would be a whole lot happier!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Simple Joys

Today I am delighting in the simple pleasures and home joys of life...

...watching four small boys play "battle" as only little boys can

...sharing music (and laughter) with my students

...sending love to my sisters via text (though 700 miles separates us)

...chatting on the phone with my great-uncle and aunt down in Louisiana and being thoroughly entertained by their endearing Southern charm and drawl!

...greetings and hugs to gals at the University choir after not seeing each other all summer

...walking amidst the late summer trees under an azure sky

...watching five beautiful children tonight: giggling over innocent amusements with Miss 9-yr-old and Miss 11-yr-old, cuddling Mr. 4-yr-old and listening to him philosophize

...playing in bread dough with Mr. 7-yr-old and Mr. 4-yr-old, who at one point were constructing a cave and tunnel in it :)

...laying in our new hammock under a round, glowing moon

...just being a child of God.

"...I came that they might have life, and have it more abundantly."
(John 10:10)

Friday, June 18, 2010


This verse never fails to quiet my heart!

“To everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven… He has made everything beautiful in His time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.”

– Ecclesiastes 3:1, 11

Monday, June 14, 2010

Davidisms :)

My 13-year-old brother had us all in stitches this morning. You kind of had to be there to "get it" fully, but I'll see if I can repaint the scene. :)

The four siblings were sitting in Church, and Sarah had David reading aloud The Universal Prayer of Pope Clement (okay, every version I can find online has a slightly different translation, so that messes up the dialogue a little bit). Anyway, the prayer book we have says, "Lord, make me...diligent in my duties". Now if you know my brother, you know that he can be a little, shall we say, hard to keep focused sometimes. So when we hit that part of the prayer, here's what transpired:

Sarah: Um, sir, repeat that line!

David: "Diligent in my duties"

Sarah: Try it again.

David: "Diligent in my duties"

(Repeat this exchange at least once more)

*Insert sibling chuckles here*

David: Well, I do a pretty good job when I'm motivated.

Me: What about the other 99% of the time?

Sarah: Well, there's this thing call SELF-motivation that you need.

Me: It's interesting, isn't it, all the words that start with "D"? David can either be a distracted, destructive dawdler or a diligent, dutiful...

(Sarah and Claire look at each other, searching for the right "D" word to finish)

David: ...DUDE!

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

June: Month of the Sacred Heart

“For evangelization today, the Heart of Christ must be recognized as the heart of the Church: It is He who calls us to conversion, to reconciliation. It is He who leads pure hearts and those hungering for justice along the way of the Beatitudes. It is He who achieves the warm communion of the members of the one Body. It is He who enables us to adhere to the Good News and to accept the promise of eternal life. It is He who sends us out on mission. The heart-to-heart with Jesus broadens the human heart on a global scale.”

– Pope John Paul II

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Immodesty and Beauty Pageants

A poignant and needed opinion piece at

"The Miss USA pageant must pull back the reigns and take a more modest approach, or women of virtue and ethics will not participate. Without women of principle, the pageant will scrape the bottom of the barrel for eager, unprincipled participants. That industry exists and it's called pornography-and God knows we don't need more of that."

Sunday, May 09, 2010

The Honor of Motherhood

I've posted them before, but in honor of Mother's Day, these beautiful words are worth sharing again...

"The Most Important Person on earth is a mother. She cannot claim the honor of having built Notre Dame Cathedral. She need not. She has built something more magnificent than any cathedral -- a dwelling for an immortal soul, the tiny perfection of her baby's body...The angels have not been blessed with such a grace. They cannot share in God's creative miracle to bring new saints to Heaven. Only a human mother can. Mothers are closer to God the Creator than any other creature; God joins forces with mothers in performing this act of creation...What on God's good earth is more glorious than this: to be a mother?"

Happy Mother's Day!

Friday, May 07, 2010

Thoughts on Beauty

I just found this, somehow still saved as a draft, though I wrote it back in January of last year. I know we are now in Spring, but I wanted to publish it because I think it's a meaningful reflection for any time!

My little brother and I ran an errand a perfect wonderland. Snow, falling thickly yet gently, is blanketing the world. Such a sight never ceases to move me to joyous wonder.

Pausing to watch the millions of glittering flakes waft under street lights, I couldn't help but exclaim to David, "Oh, it's marvelously beautiful!".

He's 11, but has already heard enough drivers talking to know what comes along with this beauty. "Yes, but it's dangerous," he piped from the back seat.

And a response came to me, immediately and reflectively. "But all beauty comes with some danger, David."

...Particularly the beauty of femininity. One of the many quotes which struck me deeply from Dr. Alice von Hildebrand's The Privilege of Being a Woman was this:

“The power that women can wield over men is great indeed. If they pursue their own selfish aims, women are Satan’s slaves. If they put their charm at God’s service, they are God’s great allies.” (emphasis hers)

It is precisely because of the value, the power of beauty that it comes with danger. In my interactions with girls and ladies young and old, the bestowing of beauty as a gift on our sex is more and more apparent to me. But the world works it hardest to train us to misuse and abuse this gift. We are told to be beautiful for our own happiness, our own success, our own fullfillment, our own benefit. And yet, Dr. von Hildebrand warns us quite clearly about such selfishness and misuse of power.

The beauty itself is not the problem. Just as the snow itself is not the problem! The danger comes with our response. If I throw caution to the wind and drive without care on slippery roads, sure danger awaits — for me and for others. If I throw prudence to the wind and aspire for beauty without care for its essence, its Source and Giver, sure danger awaits — for me and for others.

Indeed, beauty it is both a gift and a calling from the Creater to His daughters. We are called to manifest to the world a glimpse of His perfect, radiant beauty. The physical should be only a mirror of the interior, timelessly captivating beauty of a pure, servant heart.

Let us be ever-mindful of this marvelous gift and high calling, and careful of the danger that comes with it!

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Today's Quote

"The present moment holds infinite riches beyond your wildest dreams but you will only enjoy them to the extent of your faith and love. The more a soul loves, the more it longs, the more it hopes, the more it finds. The will of God is manifest in each moment, an immense ocean which only the heart fathoms insofar as it overflows with faith, trust and love."

—Jean-Pierre De Caussade in The Sacrament of the Present Moment
I think that book needs to be on my reading list!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Holy Card Heaven

I have to share this lovely treasure of a blog so that you, too, can enjoy its beauty! Not only are countless holy cards (including antiques!) shared, but they even have one of my favorite scriptures verses in the header. :)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Pope asks Bloggers to Give Internet a Soul

(24 Apr 10 – RV) The need to give the Internet a soul and humanize the dynamics of the digital world was at the heart of Pope Benedict XVI’s message Saturday to participants in a conference on modern means of mass communication.

Promoted by the Italian Bishops Conference, “Digital Witness” draws together experts in information technology, social networking, web journalism and blogging to focus on the language we use and the way we communicate as Christians in the online society.

Pope Benedict told participants that the task of every believer who works in media, is to ensure the “quality of human contact, guaranteeing attention to people and their spiritual needs”.

“This is increasingly urgent in today’s world”, he said, at a time when Internet appears to have a “basically egalitarian” vocation, but at the same time, “marks a new divide", the "digital divide" that "separates the included from the excluded."

"The dangers of homologation and control, of intellectual and moral relativism are also increasing, as already recognizable in the decline of critical spirit, in truth reduced to a game of opinions, in the many forms of degradation and humiliation of the intimacy of the person."

Thus said the Pope we see, a "spiritual pollution" that brings us to no longer "look one another in the face”. So we must “overcome those collective dynamics that risk reducing people to "soulless bodies, objects of exchange and consumption”. The media must become a “humanizing factor”, focused "on promoting the dignity of persons and peoples". Only then will "the epochal times we are experiencing be rich and fertile in new opportunities."

"Without fear we must set sail on the digital sea facing into the deep with the same passion that has governed the ship of the Church for two thousand years. Rather than for, albeit necessary, technical resources, we want to qualify ourselves by living in the digital world with a believer’s heart, helping to give a soul to the Internet’s incessant flow of communication".

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Power of the Eucharist

I love quotes... you know that by now. :) But when I find one this moving, how can I not share it?

"My children, we know when a soul has worthily received the Sacrament of the Eucharist, it is so drowned in love, so penetrated and changed, that it is no longer to be recognised in its words or its actions... It is humble, it is gentle, it is mortified, charitable, and modest; it is at peace with everyone. It is a soul capable of the greatest sacrifices; in short, you would not know it again."

—St John Vianney, special patron of this "Year for Priests"

(Quote found at this blog, where there is also an insightful article about the recent persecution of the Holy Father and the clergy scandal.)

On a completely non-related note, I noticed that I've just exceeded 500 posts: this is my 501st entry here. :)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Answers & Winners :)

Okay, here are the answers for the Easter greeting languages. And congrats to Nati, who correctly identified 10 of them! Runners up are Larissa and Catherine, who each knew 7. Hope you had fun. :)

1. Cristo ressuscitou! Ressuscitou verdadeiramente!

2. Christus ist auferstanden! Er ist wahrhaftig auferstanden!

3. Christus is opgestaan! Hij is waarlijk opgestaan!

4. Christus resurrexit! Resurrexit vere!

5. Christ est ressuscité! Il est vraiment ressuscité!

6. Cristo è risorto! È veramente risorto!

7. Cristo ha resucitado! ¡En verdad ha resucitado!

8. Χριστός ἀνέστη! Ἀληθῶς ἀνέστη!

9. Христос воскрес! Воистину воскрес!

10. Krist uskrsnu! Uistinu uskrsnu!

11. Chrystus zmartwychwstał! Prawdziwie zmartwychwstał!

12. Christos voskresen! Naistino voskresen!
Church Slavonic used by Slovaks

13. Kristus prisikėlė! Tikrai prisikėlė!

14. Tá Críost éirithe! Go deimhin, tá sé éirithe!

15. Tha Crìosd air èiridh! Gu dearbh, tha e air èiridh!

16. Si Cristo ay nabuhay! Siya nga ay nabuhay!

17. Ua ala hou ´o kristo! Ua ala ´i ´o no ´oia!

18. Krisztus feltámadt! Valóban feltámadt!

19. Kristus er opstanden! Ja, sandelig opstanden!

20. Ha Masheeha houh quam! Be emet quam!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Greetings on Divine Mercy Sunday!

In the words of Jesus:

"I desire that the Feast of Mercy be a refuge and shelter for all souls... On that day the very depths of My tender mercy are open. I pour out a whole ocean of graces upon those souls who approach the fount of My mercy. The soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain complete forgiveness of sins and punishment."
-St. Faustina's Diary p. 699

Here's a beautiful website explaining the devotion, Feast, graces, and more:

Friday, April 09, 2010

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Modern "Feminism"

My dear friend Malori has authored a splendid article on The Negative Effects of Modern Feminism, and I was honored to be the editor. Do head over to her blog and check it out. Let us know what you think!

Easter Greetings from around the world...

Christ is Risen! He is risen indeed! In a true Catholic (universal) spirit, here are the joyful greetings as spoken 'round the globe. How many languages can you identify (or add)? Time for a comment contest!

1. Cristo ressuscitou! Ressuscitou verdadeiramente!

2. Christus ist auferstanden! Er ist wahrhaftig auferstanden!

3. Christus is opgestaan! Hij is waarlijk opgestaan!

4. Christus resurrexit! Resurrexit vere!

5. Christ est ressuscité! Il est vraiment ressuscité!

6. Cristo è risorto! È veramente risorto!

7. ¡Cristo ha resucitado! ¡En verdad ha resucitado!

8. Χριστός ἀνέστη! Ἀληθῶς ἀνέστη!

9. Христос воскрес! Воистину воскрес!

10. Krist uskrsnu! Uistinu uskrsnu!

11. Chrystus zmartwychwstał! Prawdziwie zmartwychwstał!

12. Christos voskresen! Naistino voskresen!

13. Kristus prisikėlė! Tikrai prisikėlė!

14. Tá Críost éirithe! Go deimhin, tá sé éirithe!

15. Tha Crìosd air èiridh! Gu dearbh, tha e air èiridh!

16. Si Cristo ay nabuhay! Siya nga ay nabuhay!

17. Ua ala hou ´o kristo! Ua ala ´i ´o no ´oia!

18. Krisztus feltámadt! Valóban feltámadt!

19. Kristus er opstanden! Ja, sandelig opstanden!

20. Ha Masheeha houh quam! Be emet quam!

Now, if only I could pronouce all of these, we'd be good to go. :)

Saturday, April 03, 2010

In the Tomb

Tomb, thou shalt not hold Him longer
Death is strong, but Life is stronger
Stronger than the dark, the light
Stronger than the wrong, the right
Faith and Hope triumphant say:
Christ will rise on Easter Day.
(Bishop Phillips Brooks, An Easter Carol)

Friday, April 02, 2010

I long

...for the day when our culture will be so completely Christian, so completely Catholic, that Google will acknowledge Good Friday. Not that I have anything against Hans Christian Anderson, but the salvation of the world is more noteworthy than his 205th birthday...

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

1 Thess 5:17

"You say grace before meals. All right. But I say grace before the concert and the opera, and grace before the play and pantomime, and grace before I open a book, and grace before sketching, painting, swimming, fencing, boxing, walking, playing, dancing, and grace before I dip the pen in the ink."
--G.K. Chesterton
"Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing.
In all circumstances give thanks,
for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus."
(1 Thess 5:16-18)

Through Him, With Him, In Him

I'm marveling at the greatness of Christ working through His Mystical Body, when its members unite! This is the project I was blessed to be a part of the past two weekends. Nearly 2500 souls were touched with the reality of the Passion. Blessed be God!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Feast of the Annunciation

On this Solemnity of the Annunciation, we rejoice in the mystery of the Incarnation: that by a maiden's "yes", the Word of God became flesh and dwells among us!

My full reflection for today can be found here.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Happy Feast Day!

Today is the feast of St. Joseph. What do we know about this man?

He was a “just man.” (Matthew 1:19)
He lived a simple life.
He was a carpenter.
He was a descendant of King David.
He lived in Nazareth, in Galilee.
He was the husband of Mary.
He was the foster-father of Jesus.
He was protector of the Holy Family.

He often received messages in dreams.
He is the patron saint of fathers.
He is the patron saint of families.
He is patron of the Universal Church.
He is the patron saint of workers.

He has a second feast day:
May 1 is “St. Joseph the Worker”,
when we honor him as patron of all workers.

He is the patron of a happy death,
because he died in the arms of Jesus and Mary.

Prayer to St. Joseph
(from the 1st Century)

O St. Joseph, whose protection is so great, so strong, so prompt before the Throne of God, I place in you all my interests and desires.

O St. Joseph, do assist me by your powerful intercession and obtain for me from your Divine Son all spiritual blessings through Jesus Christ, Our Lord; so that having engaged here below your Heavenly power, I may offer my Thanksgiving and Homage to the most Loving of Fathers. O St. Joseph, I never weary contemplating you and Jesus asleep in your arms. I dare not approach while He reposes near your heart.

Press him in my name and kiss His fine Head for me, and ask Him to return the kiss when I draw my dying breath. St. Joseph, Patron of departing souls, pray for us. Amen.


“Fathers of families find in Joseph the best personification of paternal solicitude and vigilance; spouses a perfect example of love, of peace, and of conjugal fidelity; virgins at the same time find in him the model and protector of virginal integrity.”

– Encyclical of Pope Leo XIII
On Devotion to St. Joseph

Happy Feast Day, everyone!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


In honor of St. Patrick's Day...

Laughs from Children

To funny not to share...

Last night at RE classes, my mom graciously substitute-taught Grade 1 for me because the catechist couldn't be there (thank you, Mom!). The daytime school teacher had left a classroom window open and written on the board, "Please shut the windows, thank you!".

During class, Mom had the children make Easter greeting cards for their families, and so she wrote a few words for them on the board to help them with messages. Near the end of class, she started erasing the window message, when one little boy called out, "Wait, I'm not done with it yet!"

Apparently, that Easter card will have a rather unique greeting. :D

Sunday, March 14, 2010

The past week +

I pulled... two all nighters to finish the Modeling Modesty Handbook* (thanks for your assistance!).

I traveled... to northern WI.

I gave... two presentations (with PowerPoint; that was fun) to 130 or so ladies at the Embracing Your Call to Holiness Conference. Great response, and great event!

I visited... several wonderful families we know in Northern WI, and my grandparents on the way home.

I enjoyed... Sarah home on Spring break!

I felt... the pain of too many priests and seminarians under attack. The battle for souls is at an all-time high.

I welcomed... the first days of Spring.

I saw... A Walk to Remember with sisters and friends for "girls' movie night"

I practiced... for the upcoming Seven Last Words of Christ Performance, the premiere Lenten meditation/passion play of Chicagoland. With nearly 100 performers, it includes a large choir performing Dubois' classical contata (that's where I am), several professional soloists, live orchestra, and actors. Purchase tickets online, or call (815) 727-3018.

I smiled... at my music students' recital last night, and the pleasure of seeing their joy.

I went... from one big project right into another, as I write an Easter Play for my RE Program. As soon as I hit "publish", it's back to that now...

I (just) watched... this inspiring movie. I remember seeing this skilled gentleman last year at the Sacred Music Colloquium. Never say "can't".

I stole (shamelessly)... the style of this post from my sister. :) Love you, sis.


*To request a copy of the Modeling Modesty Handbook, email me at lily maiden @ sbc global . net (remove the spaces).

Friday, March 05, 2010


I am one blessed gal. Between my loving family and abundant, kind friends, I was simply showered with joys on my birthday! And it's the little, thoughtful things (that aren't little to me). Dad and David singing Happy Birthday while waking me. The lovely pashmina from my mom. A surprise homemade skirt by Veronica (I'm wearing both here). Birthday kisses and a coupon good for 22 back rubs from David. So many birthday greetings on Facebook, I lost count. Six red roses from one of the catchesists in my RE Program. Tulips from my goddaughter. Sweet posts by friends and sisters. A swivel seat for my troubled back, wrapped so beautifully and dropped on my porch by friends. Heartwarming homemade cards by little ones. Phone calls and "singing telegrams". E-cards. Cards in the mail. The university choir serenading me at practice...

I thank our Lord, and I thank you... (Phil 1:3).

Please keep me in your prayers this weekend as I speak at the "Embracing Your Call to Holiness" Women's Conference for the Diocese of LaCrosse, WI!

P.S. Many thanks to everyone who responded to this post. Not all quotes fit into the print booklet, but it will be great to have a testimonies section of the website when I expand it! Keep responding!

P.P.S. Sorry that I slipped posting on Days 6-9 of the Novena for Priests. Let's not cease interceding for them every day. Consider a perpetual novena for the rest of the Year for Priests.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Happy Birthday!

My beautiful sister Claire celebrated 22 years yesterday!!
Wow...where has the time gone?!

We love you, Claire!

-Your staff
P.S. Sorry this is a little late!! =)
"As a lily among thorns, so is my beloved among women."
-Song of Songs 2:2

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Papa Benedict on Purity

I just found this wonderful quote from World Youth Day 2008:

"Authentic love is obviously something good. Without it, life would hardly be worth living. It fulfils our deepest need, and when we love, we become most fully ourselves, most fully human. But how easily it can be made into a false god! People often think they are being loving when actually they are being possessive or manipulative. People sometimes treat others as objects to satisfy their own needs rather than as persons to be loved and cherished. How easy it is to be deceived by the many voices in our society that advocate a permissive approach to sexuality, without regard for modesty, self-respect or the moral values that bring quality to human relationships! This is worship of a false god. Instead of bringing life, it brings death."

I need your help!

I'm right now working hard to complete a newly updated version of my booklet formerly called The Young Woman's Modesty Resource Guide (it will have a new name!). I'm revamping the layout for a crisp, sleeker presentation, and also doing a bit of expansion. That's where you come in.

Ladies: Do you have a favorite modesty website to share — either a source for purchasing apparel, or for going deeper into this subject? Are you willing to write a brief personal testimony about your modesty journey, why this virtue is important to you, or an experience or change of heart that you've had?

Gentlemen: Why is modesty important to you as a Christian man? Does it help you respect and reverence women? How does a modest gal help you in the quest for purity? How do you appreciate the girls and women in your life who seek to model modesty?

I'm calling on everyone: If you are a blog "lurker" who visits here and never speaks up, please do now. Your quotes will help me add valuable insight to this new print booklet, and/or to expansions on my website (which is another project on the burner). Now's your chance to speak out on this relevant topic! Only first names and ages will be published. You don't have to write a ton — anything from one sentence to a few paragraphs is perfect.

You can email your responses to me at lily maiden @ sbc global . net (remove all spaces). The only thing is that I need you to act fast. :) This edition of the booklet will be going to the printer within the next 2-3 days. So if you can send me something before then, that will be terrific. If you need more time, just send it as soon as you can, because it can still be helpful for future printings and/or the website. Please remember to include your age.

Quotes from Christian/Catholic men are always especially powerful. Women want to know what real men really think about this subject. After all, you are the ones whom modesty/immodesty affects the most (besides ourselves). So guys, speak up! And ladies, ask your husband, father, or brother to lend input and send me a quote from him, too.

Hope to hear from you soon!

This will also help me know how many visitors I have... I tried subscribing to a site meter recently, and it's telling me that I have received 0 hits. I think/hope there's at least a couple more than that!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Next Weekend in Wisconsin...

...I am thrilled to be speaking at the "Embracing Your Call to Holiness" Women's Conference in Altoona, WI on Saturday, March 6th. If you or a lady you know lives somewhere in that area, please take this as a personal invitation! :)

The online PDF brochure can be downloaded here. You can still register by calling

I will be presenting two talks...

Clothed with Grace: Feminine Modesty and the Call to Beauty
Society depends on our authenticity as women, and more than ever has need of our gifts and dignity. This feminine dignity is empowered by purity and protected by the virtue of modesty. What does the Church say about feminine dignity, and what does it teach about modesty? What is feminine mystique? What role does beauty play in the healing of society? While exploring the answers to these and other important questions, we will learn from the inspiring examples of Our Lady and heroic feminine saints to understand the noble call of womanhood.

Raising Marylike Maidens amidst a Culture of Death
In a culture that eschews virtue and encourages vice, powerful influences infiltrate from every direction to affect the formation of our young generation. The challenge is to train our children to be in the world, but not of it. How can we raise young women confident in their identity as daughters of God and filled with holy boldness to resist the darkness? Sharing from her homeschool upbringing and experiences as a teacher and Catechetical leader, Claire will offer wisdom relevant not only to mothers, but to all Catholic women.

Regardless of your proximity to La Crosse, WI, please keep me in your prayers this week as I prepare my presentations, and work to update and replenish my print resources. I also really need to update my website... Holy Spirit, grant me efficiency!

Praying for Priests — Novena Day 5


Priests are called to consecrate their lives to God for the salvation of his people and to unite themselves more closely every day to Christ the High Priest.


United with Jesus Christ the Great High Priest, we pray;
Lord, show us your face!

That priests will renew and intensify their devotion to daily prayer;
Lord, show us your face!

That priests will prayerfully meditate on the law of God and put into practice what they teach;
Lord, show us your face!

That priests will sustain God's people by sharing with them the fruits of their own prayer lives;
Lord, show us your face!

Pray the Prayer to the Mother of God shared on Day 1.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Prayer for Priests — Novena Day 4

"O Jesus, eternal Priest, keep your priests within the shelter of Your Sacred Heart, where none may touch them."

Pray the Prayer to the Mother of God shared on Day 1.

If you're on Facebook, look up this wonderful group started by some friends of mine: Humble Prayers for Holy Priests.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Prayer for Priests — Novena Day 3

The Wisdom of the Church:

"A priest's office is to be a mediator between God and his people, for as much as he bestows divine blessings on the people and offers up their prayers to God, and in some manner renders satisfaction to God for their sins...Because he is placed between God and man, the priest should touch God by his prayer and touch man by his mercy and compassion."

(St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica)

Pray the Prayer to the Mother of God shared on Day 1.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Prayer for Priests — Novena Day 2

Insights of St. John Vianney:

"Oh, how great is the priest! If he understood himself he would die...God obeys him; he speaks two words, and Our Lord comes down from heaven at his voice, and shuts himself up in a little Host...

If man well understood this mystery, he would die of love."

Pray the Prayer to the Mother of God shared on Day 1.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Prayer for Priests — Novena Day 1

I decided there would be no better time than today to begin a novena for priests. I've had the Magnificat Year for Priests companion sitting in my book basket for at least a few months...

Won't you join me? Drop me a comment to let me know that you're participating in this spiritual effort, and if you have your own prayer source, do share it with us!

I will try to share a portion of the Magnificat Novena each day...

A Prayer to the Mother of God for Priests by St. Charles Borromeo

O Holy Mother of God, pray for the priests you Son has chosen to serve the Church. Help them, by you intercession, to be holy, zealous, and chaste. Make them models of virtue in the service of God's people. Help them be pious in mediation, efficacious in preaching, and zealous in the daily offering of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Help them administer the Sacraments with love and joy. Amen.

You can learn more about the wonderful Magnificat booklet here (it's only $3.95, and I found mine free at a nearby parish), or there is a beautiful prayer from EWTN here.

"How great is the priest!
He will only rightly understand himself in heaven.
To understand the priesthood on earth
would make one die, not of fear, but of love.
The priesthood is the heart of the love of Jesus."
(St. John Marie Vianney, Cure of Ars)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Today: Feast of the Chair of St. Peter

One of my favorite verses:

"Always be ready to give an explanation
to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope,
but do it with gentleness and reverence..."

(1 Peter 3:15-16)

Here's something that is only slightly related, but amusing enough to mention — the two or three times today that I typed "Chair", my fingers automatically added an "e" to the end. After all, how many thousands of times have I typed my own name? :) Similarly, whenever I need to type the name "Tim", it always becomes "time" first... typing autopilot, I suppose!

Prayer for Priests

I've seen trial and difficulty come lately to too many priests I know. We can always use a reminder to pray for our priests!

Jesus, Good Shepherd, Great High Priest, today I lift to You in prayer all of our priests. You left us Yourself in the person of the priest. Mold them into what You want them to be. Let them be You to each person they meet. May they fill all the needs of those who turn to them today. Send someone to lift their spirit and to be Jesus to them when others knock them down, to encourage them when their hope is gone. Give them all the strength and courage they need to persevere in holiness when under trial or just worn out from saving souls. Please bless us with many more holy priests. Teach us to love and appreciate all of our priests and to see You in them.

I consecrate all priests to the Immaculate Hands and Heart of Mary, Our Mother of Divine Love Patroness of Priests. I thank You for their priesthood. Keep them close to You. Please enfold and protect them in Your Mantle of Divine Love. My Lord Jesus I trust in You! Amen.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Pro-Life Victory —

Young Counselor Threatened with Knife Learns that Baby Was Saved from Abortion

Three months after being threatened with a knife to her throat by a woman entering an abortion mill, 21-year-old pro-life counselor Leah Winandy has
learned that her attacker has decided not to abort her child – and credits Leah
and Leah’s mother for saving her from a life of regret.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


The video speaks for itself. I guess we need more Duggar families if we're going to balance this out! ;)

Sunday, February 14, 2010

A Picture of Love

My column in this weekend's bulletin at the parish where I am Religious Education Coordinator. Happy St. Valentine's Day to my readers!

Today is Valentine’s Day, concluding National Marriage Week which was February 7-14! Despite what many think, this is not just another Hallmark holiday. This day actually started as the celebration of a wonderful Catholic Saint:

St. Valentine, a priest in Rome during the persecution of Christians in the 200’s, risked his life to help his fellow Christians to worship in secret. When the Emperor Claudius issued a decree forbidding marriage (in order to increase troops for his army, believing that single men made better soldiers than married men), Valentine defied this decree and urged young lovers to come to him in secret so that he could join them in the sacrament of matrimony. He knew that marriage is a holy union willed by God. Eventually he was discovered by the Emperor and was thrown into prison. While in prison, Valentine converted his jailor to the Christian Faith, and also healed the jailor’s daughter, who was blind. Legend has it that while in jail, he wrote letters to encourage the Christians and signed them “From Your Valentine”. He was martyred on February 14, and his feast day became Valentine’s Day.

Our society has a lot of mixed-up ideas about love. We might hear someone say “I love pizza”… then “I love my wife” and “I love Jesus”! In reality, love can only be toward a person – never a thing. It is about much more than flowers, balloons, chocolates, poetic cards, or warm feelings. True love is not just expressed in a costly gift, but in the giving of oneself. It can be much easier to bare one’s wallet than it is to bare one’s heart.

If we want a picture of love, all we need do is look at the cross. Jesus Christ, Love incarnate, came to show us that love equals sacrifice. He said to us: “This is how much I love you” – and then gave up His life for us.

How many spouses get motivated to do something memorable and romantic today, and then return to Mr. or Mrs. Grouch tomorrow? The challenge to each of us today is this: Am I willing to lay down my life – or at the very least, my comforts or preferences – for the sake of the one that I love?

Happy St. Valentine's Day!

"Joy is a net of love
by which you can catch souls."
"Intense love does not measure,
it just gives."
"Love begins at home,
and it is not how much we do...
but how much love we put in that action."
"I have found the paradox,
that if you love until it hurts,
there can be no more hurt, only more love."
"I am a little pencil in the hand of a writing God
who is sending a love letter to the world."
(Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta)

~ ~ ~
"Since love grows within you, so beauty grows.
For love is the beauty of the soul."
(Saint Augustine of Hippo)
Miss Anna at Maidens of Worth has a beautiful reflection here.
Happy St. Valentine's Day!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Feminine Hairstyles, Day 7

Model: Miss Rachel

Style: "The Rachel Braid" :)

Done: Last July at Ave Cor Mariae Summer Camp

Time: 3o minutes (?)

Supplies: Comb, hairties, bobby pins

How: Rachel's hair is only a bit past her shoulders, but is thick and textured. It was also wavy from being previously braided, so that added even more volume! As is often the case when I "invent" a braid, this one is the combination of a few different things. :)

1. You will first need to know the "X & O braid", as explained here.

2. You will also need to experience doing an upside-down single french braid. This is the same concept as a regular french braid, only started at the neck going upward. It's explained here.

3. The first part of The Rachel Braid is a combination of the above two: an X braid down up-side down, but leaving some of the upper hair free.

4. After doing the X braid, I parted her upper hair down the center and made a small rolled bun on either side, placed so that the ending braids from the X could come up around the outside of each, and the braid ends tucked into the center.

I'm not sharing this one to intimidate anyone, just to provide an example of the kind of thing you can come up by creatively combining what you know. :)


Top view

Back (see the X?)

Side (the hair above the slight part is what I used to make the rolled bun)

She was pleased, I think!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Feminine Hairstyles, Day 6

Model: Miss Mary Kate

Style: French herringbone/fishtail, tucked under

Done: Last summer (as you can see from all the foliage in the photos!)

Time: Maybe 15 minutes

Supplies: Comb, hairtie, few large bobby pins and/or small claw clips if you plan to tuck it under. *This braid is challenging on fine or slippery hair. Miss MK's hair is somewhat textured and was also just perfectly damp-dry at this time I did this, which is why it turned out best of any french herringbone I've tried! If you are going to try it with fine hair, I suggest using mouse or a volumizing product first.

How: Go to "Fishtail or Herringbone Braids" on this page. I generally recommend adding very small sections of hair for this braid. The hair should always be damp or wet for best results. I do recommend trying out the basic herringbone technique first with the hair in a ponytail, then without the pontail, then the french way.


Braid down

Tuck end under and secure with hidden pins/clips

One more view...

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Feminine Hairstyles, Day 5

Models: Elyse and Sarah

Style: The no-iron curled updo

Supplies: Comb, plenty of bobby pins, hairspray, accessories or flowers if desired

Time: Between 15-45 minutes, depending on thickness and type of hair

How: I just started doing this one in the past few months after seeing the basic concept. It's been well-received every time, and would be ideal for any formal event or a wedding! Here are the fundamental steps:

1. Do something — either small twists or braids or a "poof" using bobby pins — with the upper hair so that is frames the face and is drawn securely to the middle of the head with criss-cross bobby pins. On both the models below I did a side part and two small french ropes using the same braiding technique used here.

2. The updo is achieved by taking a small to medium strand of hair (the thinner the hair, the smaller the section), combing it through and coating it with hairspray, then using two of your fingers as a "roller" to roll it toward the head. Do this as neatly as possible, making the roll somewhat wide and thin. When you have rolled all the way to the scalp, carefully remove your fingers from inside, smooth the "curl" and position it whichever direction you would like, and fasten it in place with a bobby pin or two in each side (underneath the roll so that you can't see it).

3. The key is thickness and placement of the "curls". You don't want them all going the same direction, but there should be some order to it. Depending on the length, texture, and thickness of the hair, you will make probably 10-30 rolls for the entire updo.

4. When finished, hairspray your masterpiece and add any desire accessories, flowers, or hair sparkle dust. :) For our December orchestra concert, I did this on three of us, and we added red roses for a beautiful effect. Alas, somehow there aren't any pictures of those...

I have done this one on myself with the aid of a mirror, and then had my sister secure a few out-of-place strands when finished. This style can be done nicely on shoulder-length to waist-length hair, whether layered or not.


Elyse from choir — her hair is fairly thick,
about 6" below her shoulders, and has a lot of layers

Different lighting and angle

The sparkly flower clips made by Veronica and I
ended up being featured a lot in this series —
I suppose because they are so versatile!

My sister Sarah at this year's Father-Daughter Snow Ball

Accented with peach-tone roses and babies breath

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Feminine Hairstyles, Day 4

Model: "Miss Flora"

Style: The heart braid (I learned this one from Vicki!)

Done: About two months ago

How: Seat her so that her face is looking at you. Part hair down the center and about halfway down the scalp. Take a very small section of hair from the middle of her head, next to the part, and start braiding toward yourself. Use the french "lace braid" technique by only adding sections from the part. As you come towards her forehead, curve the braid into a J shape for the left side, or a backwards J for the right side. Finish the end of the braid and secure it while you do the other side. Join the braids together in the middle and add a barette or accessory, if desired.

Supplies: Comb, small hairties. *If the hair is fine or slippery, you will need to wet the top down with a spray bottle of water before braiding.*

Time: About 10 minutes


Back (see the heart?)
As you can see, this braid is adorable with short hair, but it can be done easily on longer hair as well.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Feminine Hairstyles, Day 3

Model: "Miss Eve" (Miss Nacia's sister!)

Style: Two-into-one french rope

Done: About a month ago

How: For this style, part the hair down the middle and clip one half of it while you do the other. The french rope is done using two sections of hair (not three until the end). Do the right side first following these steps:

1. Take two small sections of hair from the top. Twist the outer piece clockwise before crossing it to the left over the other section.

2. Add a small section of hair to both pieces and repeat the above action. It is important to twist the outer section clockwise (or to the right) every time you cross it to the left. This is what makes the twist pattern show up.

3. Continue until nearly half the hair is included. Leave a small section — about half the thickness of what you just braided — undone at the bottom. Add a few extra twists to the rope for security and place one or two claw clips to hold it while you do the other side.

5. The left side is done exactly as a mirror of the right. You cross the outer section over the inner, but this time you will be twisting it counterclockwise, or to the left, before crossing it to the right.

6. Leave a section of hair at the bottom, the same thickness as the other, and join these two together. For the hanging down rope braid, three sections are needed, and this has just become your third section.

7. The joining together of the three parts into one rope braid must be done carefully so as not to loosen your french ropes. This transition is the most difficult part and comes with practice to perfect the method that works best for you.

8. The three-strand rope is achieved by holding the pieces firmly in your fingers throughout this action: twist the far left piece counterclockwise (to the left), then cross it over both the other pieces. The entire braid rotates a bit. This action is repeated constantly from left to right, always taking the (new) lefthand piece, twisting it counterclockwise, and crossing it over the other two.

9. It would be a good idea for you to practice the three-strand rope (step 8) by itself before trying this style. Initially try it with your hair in a ponytail, which is easier, then progress to starting it without a ponytail. Once you have perfected these, you will be ready to try the two-into-one french rope. :)

10. For this braid, I left the very bottom looped up into the scrunchie (optional).

Supplies: Comb, hairtie or scrunchie, and maybe a few tiny clips or bobby pins to secure loose strands after you are done. *If the hair is fine or slippery, you will need to wet it down with a spray bottle before trying this style.*

Time: About 15-20 minutes (but allow more if you are just trying it out)


Side close-up

View II

Such a sweetheart!

Monday, February 08, 2010

Feminine Hairstyles, Day 2

Model: "Miss Nacia"

Style: A combination of five princess crowns, named after this young lady since I invented it for her. :)

Done: About a month ago

How: The "princess crown" is what I call a small, horizontal, curved french braid which pulls hair only from the front. This combination is explained in more detail with the photos below...

Supplies: Comb, small hairties (and I actually styled her bangs with hand lotion because it was nearby — it worked!)

Time: I redid parts of this one while deciding how I wanted it to look, so it was probably about 30-45 minutes.


Finished "masterpiece". She was so patient while I experimented, but by her expression upon looking in the mirror, I think she was satisfied. :)

The first two braids go from right to left, the middle braid from left to right, and the bottom two from right to left.
The other side...

The front gives an unique "pigtail" appearance with two braids on one side and two on the other

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Feminine Hairstyles, Day 1

Here we go!

Model: Miss Havilah

Style: A updo variation on the diagonal french braid. I've given names to some of the hairstyles I will post this week, but some (including this one) are currently I'm going to invite reader participation to help me out here! What do you think this braid should be called? Give your suggestions or cast your vote on others' suggestions in the comment box!

Supplies: Comb, one hairtie, about 10 blonde bobby pins and (optional) a double-comb piece like those shown here (they are sold at Jewel, Walgreens, or Wal-Mart for less than this site).

Time: About 10 minutes, maybe less

Photos (these are also in chronological order so you can see its progression!):

Diagonal braid, down

Side view

Other side — you can see where the braid was started

Braid up with end tucked in — voila!

Front view of her pretty face!

Hair comb duo added for decor

Finished product, one more angle (and different lighting)

Don't forget to submit your name suggestions! :)

See the list of "Week in Feminine Hair" participants here.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

And for next week...

...My friend Victoria Rose has lauched this project. I will participate to the best of my ability (availability!) and with my own twist: featuring various hairstyles I've done on others over the past several months. Stay tuned!

(I'm honored to be featured on her official banner.)
Explanation here.
Instructions here.

Bonus: A Winter Week in Feminine Dress, Day 8

Today's schedule: 8:00am Mass, accompanied flutist and bass player for their school contest, met with friends from Iowa to celebrate their baby's baptism, and after hitting "post" I must be off to catch up on deskwork and cleanup for a few solid hours. There's talk of a family movie for tonight. :)

Today's outfit #1... I wanted to post the "bonus" Day 8 to highlight a casual feminine outfit: a dark denim gored skirt with cotton tights, snowflake/snowman-print turtleneck, and sky blue zip-up sweatshirt. A combination ideal for housecleaning, chores, or "loungewear".

Today's outfit #2... For the baptism celebration and student contests, a more dressy ensemble: floral polyester skirt by "Southern Lady" (from a boutique), dark purple turtleneck, and lavender zip-up suede jacket.

I do want to share a picture of my necklace today because it's very dear sister Sarah, who is a freshman at Christendom college, gave one to both Veronica and I (as well as herself) before going from Christmas break. The back reads, The best thing about having a sister is that I always have a friend. It's nice having the reminder close by even though she's 12 hours away. Love and miss you, Sarah!

Veronica's outfit... Black stretch-lace skirt — it also has a touch of velvet — from Burlington Coat Factory (as you can tell by the number of times I've mentioned them, there is more there than just coats!), wool sweater, and black dress ankle boots from Famous Footwear. Her spandex turtleneck shell was ordered from Boscov's: she has blue and black and really likes them for layering under sweaters and other tops. They fill in low necklines perfectly, as well as add warmth and style.

This snapshot offers a nice view of her miraculous medal from The Catholic Company (my Confirmation gift as her sponsor), as well as the way her turtleneck is gathered across the front, and her chastity ring.

Today's femininity quote:
“The power that women can wield over men is great indeed. If they pursue their own selfish aims, women are Satan’s slaves. If they put their charm at God’s service, they are God’s great allies.”
~Dr. Alice von Hildebrand

Today's feminine website:

One last fun 12-year-old brother can be sweet when he decides to be! Yes, this was his own initiative. Never mind that he took the opportunity to try and tickle my face with his smack. ;)

And that, my friends, officially concludes our Winter Week in Feminine Dress. The comment boxes have been rather quiet... if you have been encouraged or inspired this week, please let me know! I really appreciate your thoughts and feedback. My purpose in hosting this is not to see my own face in print, but hopefully to offer a glimpse of how skirts and dresses can be implemented effectively into daily life.

Gentlemen, if you are grateful for the girls in your life who make the effort and priority to dress with dignity, let them know! After all, the wisdom of the world tells us modesty is unattractive...even though we know better, it's helpful and encouraging to hear the the truth from our brothers in Christ.

Ladies, I've heard one Catholic author descibe modesty as "a ministry of beauty". Our goal must be to offer in our dress and presentation a mirror of the perfect beauty of God, and a reflection of His presence in our hearts. The virtue of modesty is an important weapon to defeat the culture of death and transform it into a culture of life. As Colleen Hammond so wisely says...

"We can change the world: one outfit at a time!"