The Marvelous Gift of Music and Song

This week two friends informed me of outstanding pieces of music. I found the pieces on youTube and was delighted to listen to them. Music has the power to lighten our spirits and move us to tears. It makes our feet tap and our hands clap. It moves us to get up and dance. Animals…

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A Happy, Happy Easter

I don’t know about you, but lately I’ve been experiencing a number of deaths, in particular friends and Sisters. Thank goodness, there is Easter to remind us that this world of ours isn’t the end. A whole new world lies on the other side, and it’s supposed to be more breathtaking than this gorgeous one…

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Tiny Things That Bring Happiness

Recently someone posted on Facebook a list of tiny things that bring joy. I wish I had copied it. Because I didn’t, I’ve come up with my own list. At the end is something worthwhile that I did copy: a reflection on happiness. Although it is attributed to Pope Francis and sometimes to a poet…

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Happy Quotations and Advice

Recently I exclaimed to someone that I was “very, very happy.” Coincidentally a friend of mine is giving a talk on happiness at the college I attended, and I’ve just read a book about happiness. Wikipedia defines it as an emotion or mental state ranging from contentment to intense joy. It is a goal that…

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Gratitude and Hope Make for Joy

As little children, after we were given something, we probably heard our parents coax, “What do you say?” We learned the importance of expressing thanks. I’m currently reading a book about growing a grateful heart, which offers some practical ideas. One valuable one is to look for the good when facing adversity. A friend in…

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How to Beat the Blahs: Banishing Bad Moods

On some days we leap out of bed and say, “Good morning, Lord.” On other days we drag ourselves out from under the covers, muttering “Good Lord, it’s morning.” I think it’s a human condition that we encounter stretches in our life’s journey when we don’t feel like doing anything, going anywhere, or talking to…

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Did Jesus Enjoy Being a Human?

According to the Gospels, Jesus was aware of the horrible way his life would end on earth. This might have put a pall on his thirty-three years. He could have spent each day dreading his future. Maybe that is why there is no record of Jesus laughing or even smiling. But when you think about…

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Happiness Tips for When You’re Blue

On the news this week it was reported that 11% of Americans were on anti-depressants. That’s sad! We were made to be happy, and we wish it for others, saying “Happy Easter, Happy Birthday, Merry Christmas.”  Why aren’t so many of us happy? Of course, we can blame the theological reason: original sin that stole…

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Playfulness, Fun, and Holiness Mix

Did you see the photograph of Pope Francis wearing a red clown nose? He was congratulating newlyweds who were involved in clown ministry. Repeatedly this pope has reminded us that religion is a joyful affair. Being silly and playing pranks are signs of a good heart. At a catechist’s conference, a sales rep came to…

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Laughter, Jokes, and Joy

The Easter season, when we celebrate that God has the last laugh on Satan, is the perfect time to reflect on humor. This gift is unique to human beings. I love a good laugh. Yesterday Sister Sharon, who teaches second grade, said that in class she mentioned Pope Benedict XV. Immediately a little boy’s hand…

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