Advent Prayer

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Come, long-expected Jesus.
Excite in me a wonder
at the wisdom and power of your Father and ours.
Receive my prayer as part of my service of the Lord
who enlists me in God's own work for justice.

Come, long-expected Jesus.
Excite in me a hunger for peace:
peace in the world, peace in my home, peace in myself.

Come, long-expected Jesus.
Excite in me a joy responsive to the Father's joy.
I seek his will so I can serve with gladness,
singing, and love.

Come, long-expected Jesus.
Excite in me the joy and love and peace
it is right to bring to the manger of my Lord.
Raise in me, too, sober reverence 
for the God who acted there,
hearty gratitude for the life begun there,
and spirited resolution to serve the Father and Son.
I pray in the name of Jesus Christ, whose advent I hail.

Catholic Online

Mary, an Advent role model

Saturday, November 28, 2015

by Sister Marge Lavonis

Mary is an important figure during this season of Advent. How she lived her life is a model for all Christians. Mary was a very young woman when she received God’s call to be the mother of Jesus. So too does God invite each of us, particularly the young, to discover God’s plan.

The feast of the Immaculate Conception, which takes place during Advent, celebrates our Catholic belief that Mary was conceived without sin. With that in mind, we can be tempted to see Mary as someone programmed to do what God asked of her. Believing this is to deny Mary her humanity and the depth of her faith in God. Her greatness lies not in the fact that God preserved her from original sin, but that she responded affirmatively to God’s call to be the mother of Jesus and that she strove to live God’s will throughout her life. It is about her great faith, trust, love and willingness to say yes to whatever God asked of her, not knowing what the future held.

The story of the Annunciation, which is proclaimed during Advent, can teach us a lot about answering our own call from God. Mary had a relationship with God. She was in love with God. Her heart was prepared to listen to God. Through her prayer and union with God she was open to God’s will.

Mary also discerned the situation. She asked a practical question. “How can this be?” She knew she was a virgin and what the consequences of becoming pregnant out of wedlock were. Even so, because of her great faith and trust in God she believed that God would make it happen, even though she did not understand how. It was her trust in God’s goodness and love that enabled her to risk her future. She was absolutely sure that God loved her and would stand by her no matter what the consequences of her yes might be.

So it is with us. It takes prayer, faith and trust to answer God’s call. We need to discover God’s will in the context of prayer and in the other circumstances of our lives.

Preparing our hearts through prayer is very important because we are saying yes to a future we are not sure about. When two people marry they have no idea what their lives together will bring. And when a person enters the religious life the same thing is true. I had no idea the life of a sister would change as radically as it has during the past 30 years, and no one knows what will happen in the next 20. One thing I do know, however, and am convinced of, is that God will be with me and take care of me no matter what life brings.

Like Mary, it is our ongoing love-relationship with God that sustains us and supports us in our attempts to answer God’s daily call. Our trust in and our assurance of God’s faithfulness give us the courage we need to carry out God’s will for us each day.

Mary’s greatness ensues not only because she was chosen to be Jesus’s mother, but also because she was a woman of faith, trust and love who said yes to God even though she did not understand all that God was asking of her.

During this season of Advent, let us pray to God to deepen our faith and help us bring hope to an often hopeless world. Like Mary, let us always have our hearts prepared to say yes to God in whatever circumstances we find ourselves.

Living lives of thanksgiving

Thursday, November 26, 2015

by Sister Margie Lavonis

As we celebrate our national holiday of Thanksgiving, let us not neglect to thank anyone who has done something for us, especially our God.

In my own life I know how much I take for granted. I expect the furnace to work when it is cold; that I will have food when I am hungry; that I will have health care when I need it; and so on. There are so many things, big and small, I just expect in life, and I often forget that everything I have and everything I am is a gift from God.

How do we cultivate an attitude of thanksgiving and gratitude in our own lives? One way is to sit down in an atmosphere of quiet, and reflect upon all that God has given us, including all that we take for granted or just come to expect.

Do we have to encounter a blind or deaf person to thank God for the gift of sight and hearing? Do we take for granted the ability to read and listen to music?

Does it take the loss of a parent or a brother or sister to be thankful for the members of our families and the love and care we receive from them?

Do we thank people who go out of their way to do something for us? Do we thank the waitress or the bus driver who serves us or do we just expect it, thinking that they are only doing their jobs?

Do we send notes to show our thanks and appreciation for gifts given or for invitations to meals in the homes of others? Do we acknowledge special kindnesses done to us?

Do we ever sit down and thank God for the many people who have touched our lives and have influenced us in some way or other?

A spirit of thanksgiving should be in the heart of every Christian because we know that we ultimately depend on God for everything we have and are. It is God’s love that keeps us and all of creation in existence.

Finally, the Mass is the ultimate offering of thanksgiving to God. When we celebrate the Eucharist we give thanks for the greatest gift of all, Jesus Christ, the Son of God. The word eucharist means “thanksgiving.”

Let us not take for granted anything we have received, and remember to show our gratitude to God for all God gives to us each day. Let us always be eucharistic people, a people with grateful hearts.

May we learn to appreciate all that we have while we have it and not take our lives and our gifts for granted. Let each day be one of thanksgiving.

Holy Cross Prayer

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Please join us in offering the following prayer daily for our Holy Cross family:

A wish from Mexico

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Sister Patricia Anne Clossey works with the Children for Peace Program in Guadalupe, Nuevo León, Mexico. 

“Children participate in weekly meetings and value-oriented activities. Parents meet monthly to support what the children are learning. As an incentive, the parents receive groceries and the children are given school supplies,” Sister Patricia Anne says. “With continued violence in Monterrey, the program is providing some stability in the area.”

Please support this ministry and others with your donation. Just go to DONATE NOW or give us a call at (574) 284-5641. Thank you.

Learn more about our Ministry With the Poor.

A Prayer for Justice and Peace

Friday, November 13, 2015

Almighty and eternal God,
May your grace enkindle in all of us
a love for the many unfortunate people
whom poverty and misery
reduce to a condition of life
unworthy of human beings.

Arouse in the hearts of those who call you Father
a hunger and thirst for social justice
and for fraternal charity
in deeds and in truth.

Grant, O Lord,
peace in our days,
peace to souls,
peace to families
peace to our country,
and peace among nations.
— Pope Pius XII

Celebrating America's veterans

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Sisters of the Holy Cross honor all of America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and to sacrifice for freedom.

Help our wishes come true

Friday, November 6, 2015

Sister Anita Gomes, standing, runs the Pratasha Sewing Center in a remote area of Bangladesh. “The young girls and women who come are jobless, left out of society, and uneducated," says Sister Anita Gomes. "We give them training in sewing and provide a job so that they can support their families. In between their training, we give them nutritious food for good health.”
by Sister M. Rose Edward (Goodrow)

I’ve always loved the title of the song, “A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes,” from Disney’s Cinderella. It seems especially meaningful today as I ask you to open your heart and join the Sisters of the Holy Cross in making wishes and dreams come true through our Ministry With the Poor.

As Christmas approaches I invite you to share in the joy our sisters experience when they minister with the poor around the world. Although every day they see the difficulties of men, women and children who are less fortunate, and realize firsthand their pain and challenges, they also witness the triumphs as these people strive for better lives.

The sisters have big wishes for these individuals. They are surprisingly modest — just the same hopes and dreams that we all have: food to eat, books to read, health, shelter and respite. These are the things that our Ministry With the Poor does so well.

With generous donations from individuals like you, Ministry With the Poor will continue to flourish. Your gift now to the Sisters of the Holy Cross will help us make these dreams come true. Whether your gift is $20, $50, $100 or $1,000 I promise you it will be appreciated, used wisely, and will make a true difference.

If you prefer, you also can choose to support our sisters’ retirement needs or make an unrestricted gift. Just go to DONATE NOW or give us a call at (574) 284-5641.

As the new year approaches, you and your family will be in our prayers for peace, love and hope. May all your dreams and wishes come true!

Learn more about our Ministry With the Poor.

Grant them peace

Monday, November 2, 2015

Please join us in prayer for these Sisters of the Holy Cross who were called home to God since November 1, 2014. While we feel their loss, we rejoice in their newfound lives. 

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord,
and let perpetual light shine upon them. 
May the souls of the faithful departed,
through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

To read more about these sisters, please visit

All Saints Day

Sunday, November 1, 2015

All Saints Day, a solemn holy day of the Catholic Church, invites us to reflect on the heroic lives of the saints — both the canonized and the uncanonized — and challenges us to imitate their lifestyle so we may live our lives in faithfulness like theirs, and so receive the same reward.

Make time today to pray to your favorite saints and ask them to pray on your behalf that you may one day hear our Lord’s words of welcome to eternal happiness: “Well done, good and faithful servant! Enter into the joys of your master” (Matthew 25:21).