Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Confirmation and the road of preparation.

                                 My Godmother/Sponsor, Bishop Muench, and I at my Confirmation.

I made my Confirmation this last February after about 4 years of preparation and it was amazing! Everything I thought it would be and more! When Bishop Muench said the words and anointed my forehead with Holy Chrism leaving the indelible mark on my soul, the feeling of the Holy Spirit washing over me was amazing! I couldn't stop smiling for quite a while!! On top of receiving such a wonderful sacrament, several of my best friends came to share that wonderful moment with me! Including a non-catholic friend who took it more serious than over half my class actually receiving Confirmation! I'm so blessed to have such awesome friends!
During my Confirmation, I kept looking up to the stain glass window above the alter with depicts Pentecost Sunday with the tongues of fire descending upon the Apostles and Mary in the upper-room. The lyrics of the song Set A Fire kept repeating in my head. It set my heart on fire and I don't think I've ever been that happy before in my life!!
"There's no place I'd rather be, No place I'd rather be, No place I'd rather be, Than here in your Love, Here in your love! So set a Fire Down in my Soul That I cant contain that I cant control! I want more of you God, I want more of you God!"
Preparing and choosing a saint name.
Being homeschooled, I began my preparation a few years earlier than normal. In ninth grade I started attending retreats and confirmation meetings put on by St. Mary's parish and directed by the Directer of Religious Formation/Youth Minister. They were incredibly educational and I grew to understand the true meaning of Confirmation through these events much better than before. 

Choosing a saint name for me was easy I guess you could say. Saint Clare kinda chose me. A year before my Confirmation I started praying that I would find a saint for my Confirmation. I was strongly thinking of picking St. Rose of Lima because I really liked her, but there was another plan I wasn't aware of yet. In the summer of 2012 I went to Ohio for the Steubenville Youth Conference.  Right before I left, I kinda fell in love with the movie Frances and Clare of Assisi. While I was there, the name Clare kept popping up along with St. Clare of Assisi. From meeting people named Clare, to looking at saint medals in the gift shop and finding a St. Clare medal in nearly every saint medal box, and even staying in Clare hall on campus. So during Saturday night Benediction, I was praying and asking if I should pick St. Clare for my saint name. I was sitting between a priest and a friend of mine so when I felt a hand on my elbow, I thought little of it until I realized neither of them were touching me. There was no one there, but I could feel a hand holding me there giving me strength to stay on my knees. So I continued to pray, feeling the presents of God  while gazing at the Monstrance. And I remembered a scene from the movie I mentioned above where Clare had crawled out of her bed on Christmas morning when she was very sick, and made her way to the Church nearby and was found by the rest of the Sisters in the convent with her standing near the alter beneath a blank San Damiano Crucifix, and holding a baby in her arms! 
The next day, the last day in Ohio, I was looking around the gift shop for a present for my prayer partner when I was walking down the book aisle and the light from the sun hit my face through the window and it was sudden so it was blinding, and I stepped back and turned my face away from the light and when I did, I saw the light from the sun illuminated one book. The Legends of St. Clare of Assisi. So I grabbed it, picked out a present for my prayer partner, and bought the two items
When I got home the next day, my mom told me that my sister and brother-in-law, who were expecting a baby in December, picked out a name for the baby if it was a girl. Lucy Claire! So I took that as the last sign and picked St. Clare for my Confirmation Saint! A few weeks later, we discovered that my sister was, in fact, going to have a girl! Lucy Claire was born and baptized a month before my Confirmation!
Lucy Claire!

God answers your prayers in a way you sometimes least expect it! 
"Totally love Him, Who gave Himself totally for your love." - St. Clare of Assisi

Monday, April 8, 2013

Courtship and my thoughts.

                                                       St. Clare of Assisi pray for us!

Ok, so first off, my name is Maria JeaÇıne Clare LaGrone. St. Clare of Assisi being my Confirmation saint. I've been Catholic all my life. I'm homeschooled and have been for 11 years now. I am 16, creeping up on 17.

So after reading the Complex Infrastructure Known as the Female Mind by Relient K(one of my favorite bands) I've realized that guys really don't understand women. So hopefully this blog will clear up a bit of the confusion and show what's going on inside a Catholic girl's head. So I'll now take you inside the mind of a Catholic girl, me!

 So with society today pushing to men and women to be treated equal, they've distorted the view of equality and the unique purpose of women has been nearly forgotten to the point that they sometimes kill their own babies at their weakest, most dependent time, in the womb. Also, the respect for women has fallen so low that we are seen as objects to be used rather than a person created by God. Also, because of this, chivalry is rare in men, but very much appreciated by a Catholic girl. It also shows that a guys respects women and treats them as a special gift from God. Respect is on my list of requirement that a guy should have before I ever enter into a relationship with him. And yes, I have a list. I'm picky, but in a good way.
"If a woman raises her standards, will she find herself alone? Initially, she probably will. Although it may sound counterproductive, a woman must deliberately decrease her odds of finding a guy in order to increase her odds of finding a soulmate. Things such as modest dress and high moral standards will diminish the number of men willing to pursue her. However, it will also increase her appeal to those who are worthy of her … The wait to find a decent man may feel excruciating at times, but why not hold out for a guy who loves you for who you are, not for what you give him?" - How to find your soulmate without losing your soul By Jason & Crystalina Evert
That leads to another thing. After nearly two years of discerning my vocation, I, for the most part, believe I am called to marriage, so here is my thoughts on a relationship for me in the future. There is so much dating now-a-days and it usually doesn't last very long. That's why after reading Arms of Love by Carmen Marcoux(A great book for girls and guys! Please read it!) I've decided to court instead of date. At the mention of "courting" it may bring to mind the Amish lifestyle, but it is in fact a beautiful, and modern way to have a relationship! Dating and Courting are different in many ways. The reasons I'm choosing to court is because dating is now more of a physical relationship to our society and well, I'm saving myself for my husband and even my first kiss for my husband on my wedding day! And I'm not saying that dating is only a physical relationship, but simply that the world has corrupted dating in my eyes and I don't want a part of it, but rather, a more Jesus centered relationship with a guy.

And that about sums it up. Thanks for reading and God Bless!

Jeremiah 29:11
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.