Los Angeles Catholic Prayer Breakfast 2018

Los Angeles Catholic Prayer Breakfast 2018

About 2,000 fellow Angelenos and I spent the morning in prayer at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels. We began at 6:30 am with the rhythm of the Rosary. We heard angels’ voices coming through the Carmelite Sisters as they sang us through Mass. Truly the choir of angels came out during the communion song when the granddaughter of two of the original prayer breakfast organizers sang “How Beautiful,” in memory of her grandfather. She was a conduit of God’s love and she touched our souls through the vibration of sound – a beautiful way to begin this very special day.

Los Angeles Catholic Prayer Breakfast Program

As the morning continued we all gathered in the Cathedral Courtyard to enjoy breakfast. After Archbishop Gomez blessed the One Nation Under God United in Prayer Bracelets that we gifted each person in attendance, the event’s keynote speaker Bishop Barron spoke about the longing of the heart. His words were so impactful that I scribbled notes on my paper napkin so I could share them with you.

Notes Taken During Bishop Barron's Keynote Speech Los Angeles Catholic Prayer Breakfast

“BECAUSE YOU HAVE MADE US FOR YOURSELF, AND OUR HEARTS ARE RESTLESS TILL THEY FIND THEIR REST IN THEE.” – St. Augustine.

This my friends is truth and as St. Thomas Aquinas shared, as humans, we try to fill this longing of the heart with substitutes for God. However, the more we try to fill it with substitutes, the more empty we feel and it becomes a chase, an addiction, rather than peace and fulfillment. The four substitutes St. Thomas Aquinas identifies are wealth, power, pleasure, honor. We say to ourselves, “If I fill my life with enough of these things I will be happy.” But it becomes an infinite cavern. The more we dump in, the more we lose and we run faster, scared to run out, chasing for more. Yes, wealth makes us wealthier, power makes us powerful, fame makes us famous, but happiness only comes when we surrender to the will of God and allow God to seize us and use us as His instrument of love. According to Bishop Barron, “Thomas Aquinas said that if you want to see the perfect exemplification of the beatitudes, you should look to Christ crucified. The saint specified this observation as follows: if you want beatitude (happiness), despise what Jesus despised on the cross and love what he loved on the cross.”  Come seek the will of God and when you do, you will be grounded in God and in the will of Christ. From this point, you will know what to do with wealth, power, pleasure and honor – surrender to the will of God, allow Him to flood your heart with love and then you will live in true freedom, free from attachment, free from addiction, free to be who you are born to be, free to become a summit of divine grace. – Amy

 Come seek the will of God and when you do, you will be grounded in God and in the will of Christ. From this point, you will know what to do with wealth, power, pleasure and honor - surrender to the will of God, allow Him to flood your heart with love and then you will live in true freedom, free from attachment, free from addiction, free to be who you are born to be, free to become a summit of divine grace. – Amy

 

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Trust In It. And Awaken Anew!

 

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Trust In It. And Awaken Anew!

Trust In It. And Awaken Anew!

“It is enough; now, O LORD, take my life, for I am not better than my fathers.” – Elijah

A few weeks ago I was sitting in Sunday Mass and the reading was 1 King 19. Elijah was questioning his life, “It is enough; now, O LORD, take my life, for I am not better than my fathers.” Elijah the great prophet thought of his life as worthless in that moment! I know this feeling of worthlessness, when everything around us comes crashing down, suffocating us in a dark storm. In these moments, I feel as though I cannot fix it, and I begin to tell myself that it is my fault and maybe if I weren’t here it would be better. WOW, a spiral of doubt and darkness takes over – and to think this is normal. Even Elijah felt it. What did he do? He prayed. He surrendered. He fell asleep and allowed God to surround him with angels, to renew him and nourish him. When he awoke he was restored, for he felt new, energized and went on to be a major prophet for God sharing light with the whole world!

Trust In It. And Awaken Anew! Elijah - My Saint My Hero Blog Writer Amy D'Ambra in Prayer

Prophets and saints are not perfect, their life sucks at times too. It is what they do and how they react when they find themselves in that downward spiral, that I want to learn from. Elijah felt the emotion of severe depression, to the point of begging God to take his life. He was down and out, and he turned to God. I love this! When we can’t get ourselves out of darkness and despair …

Pray, surrender and rest! Don’t run faster, try to fix it, or numb out. Sit still, give it up to Him, rest and allow His miraculous love to renew, transform and regenerate us!

Just imagine the angels re-wiring us, re-aligning us towards God’s love, light, and joy. We almost need to be asleep for them to do this with ease. Trust in it. And awake anew! Maybe, just maybe, in the new day, you will be the light that changes the world! You will be the one that brings hope of God to others. Just like Elijah; better yet, just like YOU! –Amy

 

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We Pray

We Pray

National Day of Prayer

Let’s invite all to unite in prayer for LOVE to fill our hearts, our family, our community and our world with renewed hope. We are ONE and together we are LOVED. #loveheals #prayerworks “let’m know they’re LOVED”

Let’s invite all to unite in prayer for LOVE to fill our hearts, our family, our community and our world with renewed hope. We are ONE and together we are LOVED.

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there I am in the midst of them – Matthew 18:20

Wear this bracelet as a reminder to pray for the whole world, pray for peace, pray for our youth and pray for our families. Your prayer ignites a wave of love that continues to shine brighter and brighter for all eternity.

We Pray Wave of Prayer Bracelet

The Benedictine medal at the end of the weave is a powerful symbol of protection to remind us that we are safe under the mantle of God’s love and protection. May wearing this bracelet be a reminder that each knot holds us woven together in prayer. You have a precious jewel of God’s divine love that sparked from within and memories of life are the beautiful layers upon the light. May you be inspired to allow this love to shine and may you fill this world with warmth and light. – Father John Bartunek, LC ThD  RCSpirituality.org

 

We donate a portion of the proceeds from this bracelet to Homeboy Industries, an organization that provides second chances.

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If Angels Could be Jealous of Men- First Holy Communion

If Angels Could be Jealous of Men- First Holy Communion

A Real Presence, A Real Grace

The Sacraments have always personally marked a huge spiritual milestone for me. I remember around the time of my First Holy Communion, when I was about 7 years old, I was really struggling with jealousy. My little sister, at least to my eyes, was the perfect angel and she was always favored over me. I resented that it seemed so easy for her to listen to our parents, and was so nice about sharing, while it was like pulling teeth for me, and I sure vocalized it too. Deep in my heart I knew it was wrong and I desired to be a more loving and obedient girl, I just didn’t know how.

Thanks to my parents’ prompting, I remember writing a card to Jesus before my First Communion to thank Him for the gift of Himself and to ask for a very special grace. I asked that as He entered my heart that He take from me this jealousy. And He did. It was like night and day for me afterwards. I sometimes still felt the pangs of jealousy but now I had the strength, the grace to fight it.

A Transforming Love

Our Lord is truly there in the Blessed Sacrament, always present and His grace can truly transform us and work miracles. Listen as with each beat of His heart He professes His love for you.

“I love you”.

“You are precious to me.”

“I would do it all again for YOU (with your full name) alone.”

“Come, rest in me.”

“Let me heal your hurting…your burdened heart.” He will heal, transform, comfort, and strengthen us if we but come to Him and allow Him.

“If angels could be jealous of men, they would be so for one reason: Holy Communion”.
-St. Maximilian Kolbe

Celebrating First Holy Communion

First Holy Communion is one of the sacraments we especially celebrate this month. We celebrate and rejoice that these little children are receiving a gift not even the angels are privileged to enjoy. It is a reminder for us what a tremendous gift the Eucharist is, and an invitation to keep our hearts like little children!

Our First Communion Rosary and Bracelet Gift Sets, specifically designed for children, are a beautiful way to celebrate this Sacrament of love!  The rosaries are light enough for children to wear/carry, yet sturdy enough to accompany their daily adventures. They are sure to be a gift which keeps giving. Our Lady always leads us to her Son and through each bead, each Hail Mary, she will guide them time and time again back to His loving arms. Be sure to visit our store and order this Blessing gift today!

“I want to encourage everyone to visit- if possible, every day- especially amid life’s difficulties, the Blessed Sacrament of the infinite love of Christ and his mercy, preserved in our churches, and often abandoned, to speak filially with Him, to listen to Him in silence, and to peacefully entrust yourself to Him.” – Pope Francis, Message to the 2016 Eucharistic Congress.

In Him,
Maria

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Divine Mercy Sunday

Divine Mercy Sunday

Fr. Michael Gaitley, a member of the Marians of the Immaculate Conception, describes mercy as, “.love’s second name.” It’s a particular kind of love, a particular mode of love when it encounters suffering, poverty, brokenness, and sin. Divine Mercy is when God’s love meets us and helps us in the midst of our suffering and sin.”

This year the feast of Divine Mercy is celebrated on Sunday April 8, the eighth and final day of Easter, known as the Octave of Easter; a day that is celebrated for the beauty of bountiful graces poured out from Jesus. His great Divine Mercy flows out from his heart and washes over those who have submitted trust and given over reliance to His eternal love.

Sr. Maria Faustina Kowalski (1905-1938) was a Polish nun, who in prayer with Jesus, received messages prompting her to bring forth an image to the world that would depict God’s great mercy for us. The painted image shows Jesus standing in a white robe with rays of red and white light beaming from His heart. Sr. Faustina had to get many artist renderings because none of the paintings revealed the beauty she saw when she had the vision. I imagine such a glorious vision that human artistry could not capture the beauty!

On that day (Divine Mercy Sunday), the very depths of My tender mercy are opened. I pour out a whole ocean of graces to those souls who approach the fount of My mercy…

Many people have been called to conversion discovering our merciful Savior in the prayers and image of Divine Mercy. Trust in Him, experience His blessings and love, and you will receive His great mercy.

We share the Image and inspiration through our My Saint My Hero Divine Mercy Bracelet which includes the simple yet powerful words, “JESUS, I TRUST IN YOU.”

Click here to pray the powerful The Divine Mercy Chaplet.

Divine Mercy Bracelet

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A Special Message For Easter

A Special Message For Easter

A Special Message For Easter

 

All of us are invited to come home to where God dwells with us, wipes away our tears, and gives us the fullness of life and joy in the presence of Christ. During Easter season, you have a very special and heartfelt invitation; no matter how far you have wandered, no matter where you have gone, no matter how guilty you feel, come home to the Lord!  You will find yourself far more welcomed and loved than you could ever imagine!

Easter is a special time, it is a time of renewal, rebirth and rejuvenation. Come join me as we stretch out our hand in blessing, in pardon and in peace…may our hearts be open and may we hear the Word of God speak, “Welcome home my good and faithful servant.”

— inspired by Matthew 25:21 and the Magnificat Easter Blessing

Happy Easter

May your sojourn be blessed,

Amy D’Ambra

 

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Lent with Maclaine from A Catholic Convo Blog

Lent with Maclaine from A Catholic Convo Blog

Lent with Maclain A Catholic Convo Blog

Attend Eucharistic Adoration. Buy a sketchbook. Draw what Jesus put on your heart. Color your prayers. Write your heart out as a poem. Read old books you find in your church. Start a prayer card collection. Sing a song about Jesus every morning. Find a community. Understand your past faults. Confess and repent. Write Jesus a thank-you letter. Send someone a postcard with a prayer on it. Believe. Write your honest thoughts with your Father. Give flowers to Mary. Wear saints around your neck as friendship necklaces. Keep your heart in the hands of Jesus. Know that you are blessed. Fast. Pray. Give alms. Be here, in Lent.

Lent with Maclain A Catholic Convo Blog

This Lent, my boldness comes from the fire of the Holy Spirit to give more of myself. I’m focusing especially on fasting because I believe a consistent sacrifice sings a song to God who gave us all we have. I enjoy only drinking water in place of any other drink during Lent to ground me to the truth that Jesus alone can satisfy. Any thirst in life that I experience can only be fulfilled by Christ, and the Holy Spirit has inspired me to apply this truth to my fasting. – Maclain/A Catholic Convo Blog

Lent with Maclain A Catholic Convo Blog

Benedictine Blessing Bracelets

 

How are you being bold this Lent? This Lent we are being bold by doing things a little different. We are featuring YOU and your stories. We want to see how you are changing the world.Share your journey for a chance to be featured this Lent – tag us on social media or share HERE! ⠀ 

 

A Catholic Convo Blog - Let's Talk God

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Lent with Jordan Jones

Lent with Julie Magana/MSMH Brand Manager

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Lent with Jordan Jones

Lent with Jordan Jones

Lent with Jordan Jones - When I met my husband, I wasn’t praying for love. I wasn’t praying for a boyfriend or a relationship. I was praying to draw closer to the Lord. I was at a crossroads in my life, and my prayer was simply that the Lord have His way in my life and that he turn my heart towards Him.

When I met my husband, I wasn’t praying for love. I wasn’t praying for a boyfriend or a relationship. I was praying to draw closer to the Lord. I was at a crossroads in my life, and my prayer was simply that the Lord have His way in my life and that He turn my heart towards Him. Little did I know that He’d answer my prayer by bringing Pete into my life. Meeting Pete radically changed my life. It was a true turning point in my faith. He’s shown me love and faithfulness like I never could’ve imagined in a man. He was the first person to show me a devotional and ask me to read the bible with him. He’s challenged me to walk out my faith in big bold ways and all of the small, every day, in-between ways.⠀

Lent with Jordan Jones -When I met my husband, I wasn’t praying for love. I wasn’t praying for a boyfriend or a relationship. I was praying to draw closer to the Lord. I was at a crossroads in my life, and my prayer was simply that the Lord have His way in my life and that he turn my heart towards Him.

In every step of the way, through every act of love, he’s pointed me back to Jesus… I’ve been praying for simplicity, to shed the weight of the distractions in this world so that I can make more room for Jesus. I want Him to be the center of everything I do – how I serve my clients, how I treat my friends, how I love my husband. Today I’m reminded that it all comes back to one thing: love.⠀- Jordan Jones/ Living For More, With Less Blog

Lent with Jordan Jones -Today I'm reminded it all comes back to one thing: love.

How are you being bold this Lent? This Lent we are being bold by doing things a little different. We are featuring YOU and your stories. We want to see how you are changing the world.Share your journey for a chance to be featured this Lent – tag us on social media or share HERE! ⠀ 

 

Prayer Partner Together in Prayer Bracelets - Shop Now

 

Jordan Renee Jones - Living for More, With Less

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Lent with Julie Magana/MSMH Brand Manager

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Lent with Julie Magana/MSMH Brand Manager

Lent with Julie Magana/MSMH Brand Manager

Through this I am reminded that a family that prays together stays together. That's my why." - Julie Magana/MSMH Brand Manager be bold • be faithful • be rEVOLutionary⠀⠀

Being a mom of three is the greatest gift God has given me. It has not only changed my perspective but showed me what matters. In the midst of it all, I am constantly seeking ways to strengthen my personal relationship with Jesus to, in turn, instill my faith to my children.

Lent with Julie Magana My Saint My Hero Brand Manager

 

Through this I am reminded that a family that prays together stays together. That's my why." - Julie Magana/MSMH Brand Manager be bold • be faithful • be rEVOLutionary⠀⠀

How are you being bold this Lent? This Lent we are being bold by doing things a little different. We are featuring YOU and your stories. We want to see how you are changing the world. Send in your photos, tag us on your socials and share your journey for a chance to be featured this Lent!

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