Tag Archives: signs

Sunday Sermon and Some Other Stuff:) Happy Easter

22 Apr

“Easter is meant to be a symbol of hope, renewal, and new life.”

~Janine di Giovanni

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A beautiful sunny Easter morning here in North Texas. Our regular 9 am Mass started at 8:30 in the new sanctuary and an 8:40 in the old sanctuary. I was greeting this morning, so I arrived at 7:30 and the parking lot was already getting full. By 8:15, we were told to steer people over to the old church for the next Mass at 8:40. It was wonderful to see all the bright happy faces and the children all smiling in their new outfits. There were many hugs with old friends and greetings with new faces.

Today’s Gospel and Sermon, of course, was about the resurrection. It was discovered that the tomb where Jesus was buried was empty…

“Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb; he saw the linen cloths lying, 7and the napkin, which had been on his head, not lying with the linen cloths but rolled up in a place by itself. 8Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; 9for as yet they did not know the scripture, that he must rise from the dead.”

I hadn’t heard, or maybe had forgotten the symbolism of the napkin not lying with the scattered clothing. The napkin was rolled up or neatly folded by itself, symbolizing the tradition of the master folding his napkin neatly if he left during a meal to let his servants know that he would return and not to take away his dishes. If the napkin was just tossed or crumpled on the table, then he was finished and not returning. The place could be cleared. When the tomb was opened and Jesus was gone, the napkin that was on his head was rolled up neatly, signifying He would return. And…He did!

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My take on it, well, there are other views and thoughts about the resurrection and heaven and life after death. Some people believe in a life after this one, and others don’t. Personally, I believe, and I believe in heaven. I believe in symbolism and signs.

When my sweet angel mother was in her final hours, I whispered in her ear, “WHEN you get up to heaven, send us a sign. If anyone can do it, you can.” She did. Some of you know the story of the two lucky pennies my sister and I found found on the bench beneath her mural at the library. She knew that lucky pennies were my sign. When we went up to see the mural she had painted and donated to the Elgin library many years ago, two pennies were sitting there. I know there is a heaven and she’s in heaven. Mom said so.

Easter is a time for renewal, rebirth, and second chances. Happy Easter my friends.

Saturday:) Sights, Sounds, and a Special Sign

3 Mar

“When the universe sends you a sign and places it right at your feet, pick it up, read it, and live it.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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She made broken look beautiful

and strong look invincible.

She walked with the Universe

on her shoulders and made it

look like a pair of wings.”

― Ariana Dancu

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I walked in the murky misty morning. It was cold, but I wore three layers, and hat and gloves kept me comfortable. I might have just stayed in my jammies all morning, but Bella was in need of a walk, so we ventured out and pranced around the pond. I dropped her off at home and continued my walk. For some reason, the mist and gloom was invigorating. All bundled up, I felt like an invincible soldier, with long strides and arms pumping to the cadence. (I’m from Chicago- we are tough.)

The birds were chirping and singing sweet songs, not realizing that it was freezing out. I didn’t see another single soul out walking as I pranced my 2.2 miles around the neighborhood. Even though it was grey and gloomy, I enjoyed the sights along my regular route. I especially love the interesting Heart shapes that Mother Nature provides in the strangest places.

About a mile into my walk, a tiny sliver of paper in the grass caught my eye. I just kept walking, then did an about face and went back to pick it up. Just out of curiosity, I wanted to see what it said. It was was one of those slips of paper that comes in a fortune cookie. Hmm? A sign, perhaps?

Ah… a perfect message and sign waiting there just for me. I always say,”If you’re waiting for a sign, this is it.” A sign from the universe? A sign from my guardian angel? My take on it… always keep kindness within your heart, and you can’t help but share it with others.

Happy Saturday, my friends.

Saturday:) Signs, Symbols and Poetry

30 Sep

“Everything you see is merely a symbol for things you do not see.”

― Seth Adam Smith

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Those of you who know me will attest that I’m a huge believer of signs and symbols. I love finding my lucky pennies and feathers. But, there are many more symbols that catch my attention. This week was filled with happy signs, and inspired a little poetry as I walked in the misty morning.

SIGNS, SYMBOLS and POETRY

Blackbird, blackbird, just sitting in a tree

Are you a mockingbird, laughing at me?

Or a kind messenger, sending a sign

There to tell me that everything is fine.

Ladybug, Ladybug, perched at my door

Waiting to tell me, there is something more.

The symbol of luck, abundance and peace

Open up the door, enter and release.

Butterfly, butterfly, making no sound

I found you laying, injured on the ground.

There in my hand, you didn’t question why

A sign that both of us were meant to fly.

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

Thursday:) This Is My Cross To Carry

16 Aug

“While the world changes, the cross stands firm.”

Saint Bruno

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My walking time is my thinking time. Many a revelation or ingenious concept has been conceived on a brisk pace of the feet and heart. I was out around 9am this morning, trying to avoid the forthcoming Texas heat. I know what you’re thinking. Why don’t you get up earlier? Well, I rarely go to bed before 2 or 3 in the morning, and often set my alarm for 7 for church or zumba, so on days I don’t have an agenda, I wake without the alarm, and not very early.

I was only a couple of blocks from my house, on my regular route, when I crossed the road. I noticed out of the corner of my eye, off behind me, a piece of white paper or something in the shape of a cross. It wasn’t on my way, and it was in the middle of the road, so I continued on. Rounding the corner and on the next street, I started to feel guilty. I usually pick up paper, tossed cans, empty bottles, etc. on my walks, and put them in the next trash can, or toss it when I get home. In my guilty state, I decided to walk back that way again and pick up the discarded paper. Maybe it was a sign.

When I approached the intersection, I didn’t see the white cross right away, so I looked around. Ah, there it was, blown across the street. Why did the Toni “cross” the road? To find the discarded cross. A sign perhaps?

It looked like a Sunday School project or something. The juvenile printing looked like a youngster wrote it. Who would toss such a treasure? When I flipped it over, I smiled. Maybe it was a sign. A special cross and symbol left there for me to find. I picked it up and said out loud, “YES, HE DOES!”

I had just started my walk a few minutes earlier, but I “CARRIED MY CROSS” for about another long sweaty hour, and I smiled.

That was my sign and my story for today. JESUS LOVES ME. If I had been lazy or inconsiderate of litter in the street or oblivious to the signs that we are given, I wouldn’t have found this lovely gift. Nor, a meaningful story to share. I will treasure this cross.

Wednesday:) What Do You See?

20 Jun

“Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.”

― Confucius

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You know that I see and think differently than most people. That’s just a fact. It’s a gift, it’s a curse. I see faces in my brownie mix, and I even go a step further, and play with the concept, just for my own personal amusement. ie.

On my daily walks, I see animals in the clouds above, or heart shapes in the cement, beautiful shadows on the sidewalk, and sometimes I see signs. I find my lucky pennies, of course, always a good sign.

This morning, I rescued a poor wiggly worm that was flailing about on the hot sidewalk. I’ve finally gotten over my wiggly worm fear, for the better good of the poor worm community. I picked him up after the morning rain, and placed him in the cool grass.

As I continued my walk, I ran across a couple of less fortunate creatures that did not have a kind benefactor to save them from an untimely and cruel demise. Unfortunately, I can save them all, but I can only do my best. I asked myself, “To be or not to be. That is the……..” you know the rest.

These two previously wiggly worms formed a question mark, a thought provoking symbol. “What’s it all about?” That is the question.

You may see two shriveled worms baking in the mid-day heat. I see a sign, a thought provoking question.

What do you see?

Happy Birthday to My Angel Mother In Heaven

6 Jun

HAPPY BIRTHDAY IN HEAVEN

Mourning doves whisper, while the cardinal sings,

They chirp and fly past me on soft angel wings.

Today, seven butterflies brushed past my face,

Reminding me that Mom’s in a special place.

Today is her birthday, so now you can see,

Why these winged creatures were following me.

I asked for a sign, before she slipped away,

“When you’re up in heaven, send a sign you’re okay.”

Maybe it’s Mom, or just a sign from above,

My angel in heaven is sending her love.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

June 6th. Wow! This is the first time in many, many years that I haven’t been in Chicago to celebrate Mom’s birthday. It feels very surreal, unreal, just plain weird. Everyone misses her so much. When I woke up this morning, I said out loud, “Good morning, Mommo! Happy birthday!” I called my sister this morning and we reminisced and cried. So many beautiful memories of a beautiful lady.

When I went for my morning walk, the birds were chirping and fluttering by. Then, one by one, different butterflies followed me along my path. Some fluttered past my face, others brushed my arms and hands as I walked. I could have touched them, they were so close. I smiled big smiles, and thought of Mom, sending me signs. She is still sending me signs.

I wondered if Mom was having cake and ice cream in heaven. (I hope there are angels who like the extra frosting.) She loved her ice cream. And, when I visited, she always saved me her frosting and she ate the cake part. She said the frosting was too sweet. I saved her my cake part, but neither forfeited our ice cream. We made a good team. It’s a bitter-sweet day, but I was holding up okay.

When I opened my Facebook page, I was glancing through all the posts from friends and family. Then, I read a beautiful tribute from Vanessa. I haven’t cried that hard in a long time. This beautiful little girl that Mom and Dad babysat for from the time she was an infant, grew to become part of our family, and they loved her like a grand-

daughter… because she was to them. Now, this little angel is a mother herself, with a beautiful baby boy. She wrote an amazing tribute to both my mother and father, but mostly how much my sweet mother influenced her life. Tears…

That is just beautiful, Nessa. Love you guys!

Saturday:) Signs, Sunshine, and CRHP Sisters

13 May

“One of the most important things you can do on this earth is to let people know they are not alone.”

Shannon L. Alder

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I found a lucky penny on my walk. It was there in the street on a route that I normally don’t take, crossing in the middle of the street. Another sign of my guardian angel who is watching over me. I am never alone.

This evening, my CRHP 28 sisters from St. Gabriel’s were meeting for dinner. We try to get together once a month for a social gathering. These are the ladies that spent two spiritual and intensely emotional days together last summer, then six months learning and sharing, preparing for hosting the next woman’s retreat group this past January.

A very fun evening with friends.