Tag Archives: Sunday sermon

Sunday Sermon and Other Stuff

26 Nov

“Integrity is telling myself the truth. And honesty is telling the truth to other people.”

― Spencer Johnson

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Friday and Saturday were gorgeous sunny warm days here in North Texas. I’m so glad that I got to visit the square for all the holiday festivities both days. This morning, I woke to a cold morning with gale force winds that could topple over a redwood tree. Well, I’m exaggerating a little, but not much. I took the dog for a blustery walk, then off to church early to greet before Mass. It was a little humorous because everyone walking into church this morning had a goodly shove into the door by Mother Nature.

My little friend Liam always has the biggest grin on his face when he runs up to the door to see if Miss Toni has a little something for him in her pocket.

Today’s Gospel was about Pilate asking Jesus if He thought himself king of the Jews, and Jesus replied that His kingdom was not of this earth.

“For this I was born and for this I came into the world,

to testify to the truth.

Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

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My take on it… anyone who tells the truth, any honest, just and loving person, these are the people who are living the best life here on earth and who will inherit eternal life one day. But most of all, the person who you must be most honest to is yourself. And, the person you must love and respect the most is yourself.

After Mass, I stopped for coffee at McD with Mr. Jerry, then home to walk the dog again. A few kitchen chores later, I was off to lunch with Miss Zelda. Instead of our usual Olive Garden, I suggested the new adorable cafe up the road from me, The Bluebird Cottage and Cafe…at 3711 FM 1461, McKinney. The cafe serves pastries, cakes, paninis, sandwiches, soups and salads as well as coffee, tea, juices and more.

Adorable café in a farmhouse on one acre with a wraparound porch serving soups, salads, sandwiches, paninis, specialty espresso and tea drinks, pastries and cakes all homemade!! Offering some dishes that are Keto friendly, low carb, gluten free and vegan!

The effervescent owner, Sabrina Parker, stopped by our table a few times to see how we were enjoying our meal. I had ordered the quinoa salad, and it was soooo delicious, I couldn’t stop raving about it, nor could I finish the whole big plate full. I got a to-go box.

Before we left, Sabrina asked if I’d like an extra container to take home. They were closing soon and she said that they’d have to make a fresh batch in the morning. Well, I couldn’t turn down her kind offer. Yummy!

The rest of my evening was mixed with more dog walking, a few phone calls, and my factor part of Sunday…FaceTime with my adorable grand-daughter.

Sunday Sermon and Other Stuff

19 Nov

“It was a dark and cold and gloomy morning. But, I had my sock monkey hat to keep me warm.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis

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It was a dark and stormy night” is an often-mocked and parodied phrase[1] considered to represent “the archetypal example of a florid, melodramatic style of fiction writing”,[1] also known as purple prose. (Wikipedia reference.)

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wow! It was cold again this morning, so I wore my sock monkey hat to church again. My ears stayed nice and toasty. I love to make people smile, too. Yes, I’m silly. Isn’t it grand?

Today’s Gospel was from Mark. A depiction about what the last day will be like. The Son of Man will come from the clouds, sending his angels and gathering the chosen….

“But about that day or hour no one knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”

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My take on it… gosh, nobody really knows when their last day is, do they? I could get hit by a bus tomorrow. I always say that, but we don’t even have buses here in McKinney. In reality, any day could be our last, so why can’t we just live life to the fullest, be the best person we can be, and love and share and care with all our being? Why can’t we all just do that? Not because we are afraid of hell or looking for heaven, but because it is right and just and feels good. Just sayin’.

Even though it was pretty cold and dreary out, I had a good day. I stopped for coffee at McDonald’s with Mr. Jerry after church. I actually got a hot chocolate instead of iced tea. I don’t drink coffee and I was cold. I couldn’t warm up. It was just dark and damp out all day. When I got home, I changed, bundled up and went for a walk. Gloom and cold doesn’t stop me.

I was rewarded for my fortitude with a lucky penny. This poor penny was waiting for me a very long time. It looked like it had been run over a zillion times. Always a good sign.

When I got home, I made a lot of phone calls, catching up with friends and family. I must have been on the phone three or four hours. Plus, today was Lin’s birthday. We had a lot of catching up to do.

It was a good day. Pretty uneventful, but good. Now, it is night. Hope you had a good Sunday.

Sunday Sermon and Honoring Those Who Served Our Country

12 Nov

“The valor and courage of our young women and men in the armed services are a shining example to all of the world, and we owe them and their families our deepest respect.”

~Bill Frist

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A very cold and breezy Sunday morning. How cold was it Miss Toni? It was SO called, I searched the closet for my warm gloves and sock monkey hat. Yay! It was sock monkey hat weather. And yes, I wear my silly hat to church. So, not only did I get a lot of hugs this morning while greeting at the door before 9 o’clock Mass, but, I also received dozens of compliments on my hat from the adults and smiles from the young children. I was warm and toasty out there.

Don’t worry, I did take my hat off when I got inside.

Today’s Gospel was the story of Jesus observing people putting money into the treasury. The rich gave large sums, but a poor widow gave all she had, just two small coins, and He considered that to be worth more than all the other contributions.

“Amen, I say to you, this poor widow put in more

than all the other contributors to the treasury.

For they have all contributed from their surplus wealth,

but she, from her poverty, has contributed all she had,

her whole livelihood.”

My take on it……it’s not the quantity but rather the quality of giving that counts most in life. This applies not only to contributions to charity, but also to love , friendship, and relationships. I think that giving your time and sharing your talents means so much more than writing out a check.

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This evening, my good friend and world’s greatest realtor (did I say that again?) Linda Grossman and I, joined by our friend and Viet Nam veteran, Bob Dunkerley, went over to the Veterans Memorial Park for the Veteran’s Day Sundown Ceremony.

The public was invited to join the City of McKinney and McKinney Armed Services Memorial Board in honoring the brave men and women who have served in the U.S. military. This year, there will be two ceremonies at Veterans Memorial Park. A sundown ceremony was held at Veterans Memorial Park that included the reading of over four hundred names displayed on the Wall of Honor followed by the playing of taps.

As we stood against the glossy black cold stone walls of the monument, it was difficult to hold back the tears as the many names of fallen heroes were read in the silence, in the stillness of the night, followed by the clanging of the bell and playing of taps. The photos will tell the story.

I’d like to thank all those who sacrificed so much for our freedom. Thank you.

Sunday Sermon and Special Artist Friends

5 Nov

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”

-Jesus Christ

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A cool crisp Sunday morning. With Daylight Saving Time, we got an extra hour of sleep, but I didn’t get to sleep till around 2a.m., which my body and brain thought was 3a.m. The 7 a.m. alarm came quickly, but I always look forward to Sundays, greeting before Mass, seeing friends and smiling faces, and of course, the many hugs that are shared.

Today’s Gospel was the story of the Scribe asking Jesus which is the first of all commandments. His reply was…

Hear, O Israel!

The Lord our God is Lord alone!

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,

with all your soul,

with all your mind,

and with all your strength.

The second is this:

You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

There is no other commandment greater than these.”

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My take on it… Well, that pretty much covers it all. Love God with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself. If you follow those two commandments, no other rules are needed.

When I got home, I changed and went for a nice long walk. I wanted to get my walk in early so I could get over to The Cove (Art Show). My friends Guy Giersch and Pernie Fallon had an art exhibit this weekend. Guy is an amazing photographer and Pernie is an extraordinary pastel artist. They had their individual works and collaborative pieces.

Pernie added her magic pastel chalk touch to some of Guy’s wonderful monochromatic photos.

I’m so lucky to have so many talented friends.

After The Cove, I stopped to visit my friends at Sweet Spot Bakery. The back screen door to the shop was open, so I just let myself in. Backdoor friends are the best.

When I left, I walked around the Square a while. It was a lovely day and the streets were busy with folks out enjoying a fine fall afternoon. I had a few more exciting stops to make afterwards, but I’ll save those stories for another day.

Sunday Sermon and Other Stuff

29 Oct

“Music is the great uniter. An incredible force. Something that people who differ on everything and anything else can have in common.”

― Sarah Dessen

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Such a gorgeous Sunday. The Ark building has been put on hold a while, the sun was out, and it was in the 80’s. A quick walk with the dog before church, and out the door about 8:20. A lot of happy smiling faces and hugs while greeting this morning.

Today’s Gospel was the story of Jesus leaving Jericho with His disciples and a crowd following Him. A blind beggar on the side of the road heard that Jesus was passing and cried and begged Jesus to have pity on him…

Jesus said to him in reply, “What do you want me to do for you?”

The blind man replied to him, “Master, I want to see.”

Jesus told him, “Go your way; your faith has saved you.”

Immediately he received his sight

and followed him on the way.

Father had an interesting homily, saying that the beggar didn’t ask for wealth or food, but he just wanted to see and knew that if had the chance to ask Jesus, that he would be granted sight. Then, once his sight was given, the man did not go rejoicing and leave, he Followed Jesus on the way.

My take on it… if you have faith and are persistent, your prayers will be answered. But, once you have been granted your request, you must show your appreciation and continue “following” Him on the way.

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Now, for the other stuff. Last night, Miss Loretta invited me to join her at the Allen ISD Performing Arts Center to hear the U.S. Air Force Band and Singing Sergeants from Washington D.C. Oh my, they were amazing!

It was the last performance of the 2018 Fall tour of New Mexico and Texas. The highlight was that this was also the last performance of the conductor, Colonel Larry H. Lang, who will be retiring at the end of the year after a 29-year career of distinguished service. Colonel Lang’s former high school music teacher and mentor was in the audience, along with friends and family, to honor him.

The band played a series of “Fiesta” songs including Huapang, Malagueña, along with rousing Texas ballads.

https://youtu.be/NqGSo09r-VU

The Singing Sergeants performed a medley of Nifty Fifties songs.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NxLZofxO69E

At the end, the band saluted all the branches of the armed forces with song, asking all the veterans in the audience to stand as they honored them.

It was a wonderful concert and a wonderful tribute to all those who have served our country in the past and currently serve and protect.

Sunday Sermon and Other Stuff

22 Oct

“Being different is dangerous in a world that requires conformity”

― Jonathan Cardon

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Wow! Two beautiful sunny days in a row. Be still my heart. But, I’m not giving up on construction of the ark quite yet. Looks like more rain and cooler temps later in the week.

This morning as I greeted at the door, everyone was in such a wonderful mood. Many hugs, handshakes and smiles were shared. Liam rushed up to the door and checked my pockets for his Matchbox car. Little Avery always gives me a big smile when she receives her little gift.

Today’s Gospel was the story of James and John asking Jesus if they could sit one at the right and the other at the left when He is in His glory. He basically told them that they had no idea what they asked, and that special treatment really wasn’t His to give.

“Rather, whoever wishes to be great among you will be your servant;

whoever wishes to be first among you will be the slave of all.

For the Son of Man did not come to be served

but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

My take on it… those who always have to be first, have to have the best of everything, need the glory and the power, those people who only have demands but never give of themselves, those are not the ones who will be rewarded at the end.

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After church, I stopped at the grocery store for a few things. Don’t ask me why, I really don’t need anything, but needing and wanting are two different things. When I got home, I made some pasta to add to my soup, and that’s another long story for another day. I went over to the Square for a couple of hours to visit with friends. Afterwards, I stopped to visit Miss Nelma over at Towne Creek.

Miss Nelma has been pretty sick for several months. I thought some homemade soup and a visit would cheer her up. I called her and asked if she would be home later so I could visit. She was delighted. I said, “I just wanted to make sure you were home and not out dancing or scuba diving or something.” She laughed. When last I saw her, she was hooked up to her oxygen tank. I brought soup and sandwiches and we hugged and laughed and had a wonderful visit.

Before I left, I got a text from my neighbor Kathy, asking if I’d like to meet her around 6ish for dinner at Nom Nom. Well, of course. I just had lunch, but dinner sounded good. (I brought most of it home.)

My day was pretty much, leave the house at 8:15 am, run around, spin my wheels, and walk in the door at 8:15 pm. Now, that’s a good Sunday. I’m a happy gal.

Sunday Sermon and Women of Steel (Stihl)

14 Oct

“A strong woman understands that the gifts such as logic, decisiveness, and strength are just as feminine as intuition and emotional connection. She values and uses all of her gifts.”

– Nancy Rathburn

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A dark and gloomy Sunday morning, but this afternoon, the sun is out. Yay!

Today’s Gospel from Mark was the story of Jesus being asked by a wealthy man, what he must do to inherit eternal life. The wealthy man said that he followed the commandments as he was taught.

“Teacher, all of these I have observed from my youth.”

Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said to him,

“You are lacking in one thing.

Go, sell what you have, and give to the poor

and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.”

At that statement his face fell,

and he went away sad, for he had many possessions.

Jesus looked around and said to his disciples,

“How hard it is for those who have wealth

to enter the kingdom of God!”

The disciples were amazed at his words.

So Jesus again said to them in reply,

“Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God!

It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle

than for one who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.”

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My take on it… my concept of what wealthy truly means here is not that you can’t have any possessions or have money, but if you are so obsessed with money and so greedy that you don’t help those less fortunate, then you have only accumulated treasures on earth and will not be welcome in heaven. When you are blessed, you need to share your blessings. Words to live by.

After Mass, I stopped and had coffee with Mr. Jerry. We laughed and joked around, shared of few family stories, and looked at each other’s grandchildren pictures on our phones. Then I said, “Mr. Jerry, you’ve known me for a long time, I want to ask you a serious question, and I want you to be perfectly honest. Do you think I’m goofy?” I thought it would be interesting to get an honest perspective on what a male friend thinks about me. I know all my girlfriends would say I was wonderful, but girlfriends are not always going to tell you the truth. I wanted in unbiased opinion.

Mr. Jerry thought a while and didn’t know what to say. I rattled off, “Do you think I talk too much? Am I too silly. Is it weird that I talk to strangers or hug people at church?” He thought a few more seconds and said, “I don’t think you’re too silly or goofy. BUT… There is that one time you crashed that Mexican man’s funeral at St. Michael’s.” We laughed. Oh, I forgot about that. I saw all the cars and thought it was an Ash Wednesday service. Well, it turned out to be a funeral, so I just stayed for the Mass and prayed for a man named Juan that I never met.

Jerry said, “Those are all good things and what makes you a nice person.” Okay. Well I guess that was honest enough.

Mr. Jerry went home to watch football, and I stopped at the store to get groceries and stock up on some sales. I like to get great sales on canned goods, etc. so I can take them over to the food pantry or share with the new moms over at the Bella House shelter.

As in today’s Gospel, it’s important to share your blessings. I don’t consider myself wealthy, but I sure have been blessed.

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As I was sitting here writing and flipping through the channels on TV, I noticed a show called STIHL TIMBERSPORTS. I was fascinated because I have a couple of friends who are pretty important people in the STIHL Corporation. Stan Crader and his son Justin are a couple of the nicest people you’d ever want to meet. When I was watching the show, there were these strong powerful women competing in different events using chain saws, and axes, in rather dangerous looking situations. I thought to myself, “Now, those are some women of STEEL”

As women, we need to be strong inside and out. And, I guess it doesn’t matter what other people think, as long as we know what we’re made of. Steel… we’re made of steel.