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Friday, April 29, 2011


I woke up with God today.
He was with me,
And I smiled.

I am smiling still,
For in His Presence,
I seem to glow,
On the inside, of course.

I hug Christ to me, all gratitude.
Being flighty like a bird,
Anxious to take to wing,
Precisely, because my spirit soars,
I count the grace of moment, a treasure,
and tuck it 'neath my pinions.

Once aloft on wings of love,
I may be distracted,
Attracted by His good creation,
Or attacked by jealous gods,
Envying His majesty,
And hating His Intimacy
With so lowly a creature.

My God, thank You,
For this favor in Time,
That I may be refreshed,
And readied for Eternity,
Where I shall never
Lose sight of You.

Steel me, O Immanuel.
Sharpen my vision,
To see You with me always,
In Your hidden Presence
Within my soul.

©2011 Joann Nelander All rights reserved

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Feel Their Pain - Caring for the Unborn

Gov. Mary Fallin of Oklahoma signed a pro-life measure into law, April 20, making it illegal to abort unborn children after 20 weeks of gestation because they are capable of feeling pain. The bill goes into effect November 1, 2011.

“States are recognizing that they have an interest in, and obligation to, protecting unborn children from pain,” said Mary Spaulding Balch, the director of state legislation for National Right to Life Committee.

The Oklahoma bill, titled the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” states that “Pain receptors… are present throughout the unborn child’s entire body by no later than sixteen…weeks after fertilization and nerves link these receptors to the brain’s thalamus and subcortical plate by no later than twenty…weeks.”

Once this link is made, the bill argues, the necessary and sufficient conditions for pain have been met. The law states, “After twenty… weeks, the unborn child reacts to stimuli that would be recognized as painful if applied to an adult,” and for this reason the state has a compelling interest in protecting the unborn child.

Read more:

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Grace

All I can do is remain faithful,
When You are nowhere to be found.
You made promises,
And I answered, ”I believe.”

Now, I am left with my belief,
Bereft of vision.
Only memory sustains me.

I remember You,
And our days of love.
The world stole in with lies.
I would not listen.
The world would not relent.

It, too, made promises,
Promises it could not keep.
They, though, were sweet,
But always somewhere
Vinegar, an aftertaste.

I learned to discern,
To seek the light.
To fight the war with Faith,
Burnishing the Spirit sword,
And to wait.

I wait now.
I wait still.
I resolve to wait forever, if need be,
When You are nowhere to be found.

You made promises
And I answered, "I believe."
Your grace - that I still do!

©2011 Joann Nelander All rights reserved

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Coming Soon- "Christ and the Children" by Adolfo Maes

Click here for a free download of Adolfo Maes' "Christ and the Children"
Book with illustrations by Joann Nelander soon to be available-tell you more when it is!!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin addresses Wisconsin

Truth in All Seasons- How Refreshing!
Sarah is so refreshing. It's great to hear a consistent message from someone who is believable. No tele-promter to help her keep her story straight. Change the audience and her message stays on track. It's easy when your are telling the truth regardless of your audience.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Bathed in the Spirit

I bathe my whole life
In the Blood of Christ.

In Spirit, I place my Soul,
In the form of a new born,
In the water that flowed
From the Side of Jesus,
At the piecing
Of His most Sacred Heart.

O Holy Bath, flow over me.
Flow within me,
Permeating even
To the marrow of my bones.

Embrace my thoughts.
As a river in flood,
Envelope all in Your path.
Possess all.
Carry the delinquent and wayward,
As a torrent,
To the ever peaceful Mind of Christ,
Redeeming and reconciling opposites.

May the Christ,
As a priestly chrism,
Penetrate the mundane of me,
And divinate my being.
Heal forever my disparity,
Remove all trace
Of Sin’s dominion and damage.

O Holy Love, at Your insistence,
I trust in You.

Coming forth from this bath,
Dry me, Your child,
As tears upon Your cheek
to honor all the tears
You shed for want of me.

Be solace to my regret .
Be comfort in my sorrow.
Wrap me, in my infancy,
In the heart of the Mother,
Whose Immaculate Heart
Longed with You to birth me anew,
And enflesh me as child.

Sweet Peace, O Holy Peace,
You are All in All.
I, a child of God, will thank You
For all Eternity
In Triune embrace,
A happy word, whispered in Spirit,
From the Son to the Father.

© Joann Nelander 2011 All rights reserved


I experience the Trinity in knowing.
May They, Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
Experience me as a kiss.

©JoannNelander 2011 All rights reserved.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Airport Encounter - Archbishop Timothy Dolan

An excellent article by ARCHBISHOP TIM DOLAN, the Archbishop of New York:

It was only the third time it had happened to me in my nearly thirty-five happy years as a priest, all three times over the last nine-and-a-half years.

Other priests tell me it has happened to them a lot more.

Three is enough. Each time has left me so shaken I was near nausea.

It happened last Friday . . .

I had just arrived at the Denver Airport, there to speak at their popular annual “Living Our Catholic Faith” conference.

As I was waiting with the others for the electronic train to take me to the terminal, a man, maybe in his mid-forties, waiting as well, came closer to me.

“Are you a Catholic priest?” he kindly asked.

“Sure am. Nice to meet you,” says I, as I offered my hand.

He ignored it. “I was raised a Catholic,” he replied, almost always a hint of a cut to come, but I was not prepared for the razor sharpness of the stiletto, as he went on, “and now, as a father of two boys, I can’t look at you or any other priest without thinking of a sexual abuser.”

What to respond? Yell at him? Cuss him out? Apologize? Deck him? Express understanding? I must admit all such reactions came to mind as I staggered with shame and anger from the damage of the wound he had inflicted with those stinging words.

“Well,” I recovered enough to remark, “I’m sure sorry you feel that way. But, let me ask you, do you automatically presume a sexual abuser when you see a Rabbi or Protestant minister?”

“Not at all,” he came back through gritted teeth as we both boarded the train.

“How about when you see a coach, or a boy scout leader, or a foster parent, or a counsellor, or physician?” I continued.

“Of course not!” he came back. “What’s all that got to do with it?”

“A lot,” I stayed with him, “because each of those professions have as high a percentage of sexual abuse, if not even higher, than that of priests.”

“Well, that may be,” he retorted. “But the Church is the only group that knew it was going on, did nothing about it, and kept transferring the perverts around.”

“You obviously never heard the stats on public school teachers,” I observed. “In my home town of New York City alone, experts say the rate of sexual abuse among public school teachers is ten times higher than that of priests, and these abusers just get transferred around.” (Had I known at that time the news in in last Sunday’s New York Times about the high rate of abuse of the most helpless in state supervised homes, with reported abusers simply transferred to another home, I would have mentioned that, too.)

To that he said nothing, so I went in for a further charge.

“Pardon me for being so blunt, but you sure were with me, so, let me ask: when you look at yourself in a mirror, do you see a sex abuser?”

Now he was as taken aback as I had been two-minutes before. “What the hell are you talking about?”

“Sadly,” I answered, “studies tell us that most children sexually abused are victims of their own fathers or other family members.”

Enough of the debate, I concluded, as I saw him dazed. So I tried to calm it down.

“So, I tell you what: when I look at you, I won’t see a sex abuser, and I would appreciate the same consideration from you.”

The train had arrived at baggage claim, and we both exited together.

“Well then, why do we only hear this garbage about you priests,” he inquired, as he got a bit more pensive.

“We priests wonder the same thing. I’ve got a few reasons if you’re interested.”

He nodded his head as we slowly walked to the carousel.

“For one,” I continued, “we priests deserve the more intense scrutiny, because people trust us more as we dare claim to represent God, so, when on of us do it – even if only a tiny minority of us ever have — it is more disgusting.”

“Two, I’m afraid there are many out there who have no love for the Church, and are itching to ruin us. This is the issue they love to endlessly scourge us with.”

“And, three, I hate to say it,” as I wrapped it up, “there’s a lot of money to be made in suing the Catholic Church, while it’s hardly worth suing any of the other groups I mentioned before.”

We both by then had our luggage, and headed for the door. He then put his hand out, the hand he had not extended five minutes earlier when I had put mine out to him. We shook.

“Thanks. Glad I met you.”

He halted a minute. “You know, I think of the great priests I knew when I was a kid. And now, because I work in IT at Regis University, I know some devoted Jesuits. Shouldn’t judge all you guys because of the horrible sins of a few.”

“Thanks!,” I smiled.

I guess things were patched-up, because, as he walked away, he added, “At least I owe you a joke: What happens when you can’t pay your exorcist?”

“Got me,” I answered.

“You get ‘re-possessed’!”

We both laughed and separated.

Notwithstanding the happy ending, I was still trembling . . . and almost felt like I needed an exorcism to expel my shattered soul, as I had to confront again the horror this whole mess has been to victims and their families, our Catholic people like the man I had just met . . . and to us priests.

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