Spiritual Development / January 2021

Happy New Year Dear League sisters,

As we welcome 2021, let us pray to our Lord of mercy and love and give thanks for today, tomorrow, and days without end. Although we faced many challenges in 2020 due to COVID, and continue to face challenges, let us look to God for hope for better tomorrows, and embrace Christ’s light to dispel the darkness and struggles from this past year and those still before us today.

A new year brings opportunity for resolutions and starting anew. My prayer for each of you is to turn to God, listen intently for God’s voice, and to respond to God’s call. God calls each of us to be beacons of light (sparkle) for others, especially in challenging times. Scripture makes it very simple for us to “shine brightly with flashes of light” and Sparkle God’s way. The only way to sparkle God’s way, according to the Word of God, is to LOOK TO HIM. We need God’s radiance to ignite us. It is through this ignition that we burst with life, love, joy and brightness.

THOSE WHO LOOK TO HIM are radiant (sparkle) with joy. . . (PSALM 34:5). We are called to SPARKLE.

  • To Sparkle is to shine bright with goodness.
  • To Sparkle is to have gusto!
  • To Sparkle is to be full of life and joy.
  • To Sparkle is to be radiant.

S = Still yourselves in Sacred Stillness with our Savior and embrace God’s Sanctifying grace
P = Pray and Petition to Prepare your hearts for God and find Peace
A = Awake to the wonder of God, through spiritual Awakening, Adoration, and Almsgiving
R = Reflect, Repent, Resolve and Rejoice
K = Kneel and Know that God loves you and that you were made to SPARKLE
L = Love one another, and know God’s Love and the Light of Christ Lives within you
E = Emmanuel – God with us (Matthew 1:23) for Eternity

Our Blessed Mother is a mentor for us to learn from her wisdom, actions and to sparkle as she did when she walked this earth. Our Blessed Mother submitted her life completely to the Most Holy Trinity, not only for her own good but also to set an example for each one of us. Our deepest and daily prayer must become that of hers: “I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” Following our Blessed Mother’s example will not only deeply unite us with our Triune God, it will also have a similar effect upon us by making us instruments of the Savior of the World, just as Mother Mary was. What a glorious calling to be called to be instruments of the Savior, by sparkling as beacons of light for others, imitating our most holy Mother of God. Let us pray to our Blessed Mother to help us sparkle like her, and begin to more fully share in her glorious life of grace.

League sisters, look to God and never let others or difficult situations dim your sparkle or darken your days. Have faith, trust and humble yourself to God, for God’s love overshadows darkness by igniting us, recharging our sparkle and giving us the gusto to spread the Good News, and evangelize by being beacons of light for others and lead them to God.

Together let us pray…

A Prayer to Sparkle God’s Way

Dear God,
We ask for the grace to let go of any burdens or barriers that we may carry in our hearts and minds as we search for the embrace Your light.
We ask for the gift of attentiveness, that we may truly feel Your loving presence within and among us. May or faith be renewed so that we might be beacons of light and sparkle for others.
We give thanks for the many gifts and blessings bestowed upon us, and we praise Your holy name. Help us to listen to Your voice and to surrender ourselves to Your mercy and Your will.
Father, we know we lack the depth of perfect faith that we so deeply desire to have.
We humble ourselves before You and we confess our weakness of faith.
Please strengthen us to respond more fully each day to all that You say to us, and to use our Blessed Mother as our example of obedience, service, courage, faith and holiness.
Help is to look to You with humbleness and radiance as our Blessed Mother did, and sparkle with joy, courage, gusto, faith and grace in Your name and for Your will.
God, help us to hear Your Word and Your call to us, to be beacons of Your light for others.
Help us to sparkle with goodness and to lead other to Your love, truth, hope and peace.
In Your blessed and holy name, we pray.

Happy New Year League sisters. May your sparkle be a beacon of light and hope for you and to everyone you encounter. May your God given gifts and talents be shared far and wide, making 2021 a year of new beginnings, hope, love, joy and peace.

Please remember, that although we cannot be physically connected during COVID, we are never alone! God is with us, and in addition to spiritual bonding through prayer, I encourage you to stay connected through phone calls, emails, and virtual visual chats like ZOOM and FaceTime. Sparkle for others and be their beacon of light, hope and love, by reaching out and sharing some joy and connectiveness. Pope Francis says that “we are designed for connectiveness.” We need human connection for survival, even if it can’t be physical. Sparkle for others by staying connected, as this helps prevent darkness from setting in and leading to depression and loneliness.

Since the start of COVID, I made it a mission to keep us spiritually connected and to offer opportunities for spiritual development through theological teachings and presentations on the Catholic church, liturgies, prayers services etc… I encourage members to continue participating in our Wednesday evening (7pm) COVID Prayer Vigils, which began April 1, 2020. The link is: https://cwlhamilton.ca/vigil/

Love, Hugs and Blessings, Teresa

Teresa DiFalco, First Vice-President and Spiritual Development Chair Hamilton Diocesan Council, Catholic Women’s League of Canada

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