Steubenville of the Rockies

I had the happiest moment of my life on Sunday morning. I received Holy Communion validly for the first time in two years.

A few months ago, based on the recommendation of Lindsay McKillip, my Mom signed me up to go to the Steubenville of the Rockies conference in Denver. I was expecting a cross between boring speakers and annoying praise and worship "music". Boy, was I in for a surprise.

During adoration on Friday night, there were 2500+ people packed into one room, it was probably 80 degrees in there, yet I was freezing. I had goosebumps the size of quarters, and a serious case of the chills. I ended up realizing that the Holy Spirit is in this world, and tears came over me. I was extremely sorrowful for all of the sins I had committed, and realized I needed to get back into a prayer life. For about a year before that, I had fallen into a cycle of bitterness and apathy, and became an agnostic. I never told anyone about it, because I thought nobody would care. Heck, I didn't even care! But the fact that about 2300 kids my age did care, and were so alive for the faith, made me think about things a bit more.

Mass the next morning was beautiful, despite the fact that I didn't receive Communion. Father Stan Fortuna gave a very profound homily, that managed to be frequently hilarious. Who knew you could talk about simplicity, yet bring up demonic bunnies? Him talking about Mary's "Yes" made me realize that the only thing that really matters in life is doing God's will. I'm working on it.

That afternoon, I made my first valid Reconciliation in two years. I had been to confession in the time since, but never really confessed everything, or cared about what Father said. I was DEAD wrong. Despite waiting in line for nearly an hour, it was completely worth all of the weight that I had removed. Like our MC, Ennie Hickman, said, life is like a long RV trip. Every once in a while, you have to hook up that nasty tube, and empty out the septic tank. It's a nasty job, but after it's done, you get way better gas mileage. I felt so light, and I could have jumped about ten feet higher.

We had adoration again that night, and this time was a bit different. The night before, I was full of sorrow, so I cried. Saturday, I had the sorrow of sin lifted from me, so I was full of joy at what would come from my new found relationship with God. I started laughing. Jeremy, our youth minister, had told us there would be people who did this. I now completely understand, despite being angry when somebody laughed at me on Friday night. My new friend Dan said that I had the purest expression of joy on my face that he had ever seen. For the first time, I really got into the praise and worship music, and was jumping, hands in the air, just begging for the chance to please our Lord. The Holy Spirit can really work wonders during Adoration.

Sunday afternoon, we had mass again. The entire mass, I was praying for the grace to receive Christ in Holy Communion. I don't even really remember what Father Dave said during the homily, I was too deep in prayer. When the time finally came, I dropped to my knees to receive Him. It was the happiest moment of my life. I just couldn't wait for the chance again.

The entire weekend was the best experience I have had in my admittedly short life. I would go again in a heartbeat. I haven't even told you about the talks themselves, which were amazing. If you have any questions, just ask me. I would be delighted to tell anyone anything.


little reminders

Every few days a new Mary Vitamin comes in on email.  This one really got my attention and I wanted to share it with you.  The Lady that sends these out was kind enough to let me copy it on to my site.

There are some areas in me that need a lot of work.  I ask for the Blessed Virgin Mary to help me in these areas.

God Bless.

[MaryVitamin] A Sword Shall Pierce

Mary Vitamin for February 2nd
Topic:  A Sword Shall Pierce Her Heart
“Her grief was all interior. She was obliged to deny it the satisfaction of an outlet.”
Father Faber, The Foot of the Cross, (Tan Books),83.
“All the minute circumstances of the sufferings, internal and external, which were to torment Jesus in His Passion, were made known to her, as Our Lord revealed to Saint Teresa.”
St. Alphonsus di Liguori, The Glories of Mary, (Tan Books), 361.
“The Light of the world was forever passing in and out of the house; but strange to say! He cast terrific shadow upon her, her whom He enlightened most of all; and the more she exulted, the more intolerably she suffered. And so her days went by, in the village of Nazareth.”
Father Faber, The Foot of the Cross, (Tan Books), 85.
Today, one time, I will try not to complain. Instead, in trying to be silent, I will remember Our Lady’s silence during her great interior suffering.
I will try to imitate Our Lady’s manner in enduring suffering: She gazed upon the Lord and lovingly conformed Herself to God’s Will.
Marian Vow:
“Are you willing to offer yourselves to God and bear all the sufferings He wills to send you, as an act of reparation for the sins by which He is offended, and of supplication of the conversion of sinners?”
Our Lady, 13th May 1917
With my Marian Vow, I am obliged to answer the way Sr. Lucia did:
“I renew [my yes!] every day, asking God for the grace and strength that I need to keep it faithfully until the end.”
Sr. Lucia, Calls  from the Message of Fatima, 130
I give this resolution to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Thanks be to God for graces received.