Author Archives: Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider

Risen Lord, Creation Rising

May 9th, 2013 | Posted by Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

 

Spring clean-up at the PC with Sr. Ruth and Tom!

Today I took newspapers for recycling. Ilia Delio in her book Care for Creation claims that we encounter Christ crucified at our hands by pollution and waste. So did I encounter the Risen Lord through recycling? I believe I did. Christ was in the persons who lifted the bundles onto the truck.

Christ’s loving pride in creation—“See what I made!”—was in the people working in their yards to remove the debris of winter, their hands itching to plant.

Christ was in my thoughts as I planned a route with multiple stops to conserve gasoline. May earth’s green gems rising remind us of Jesus risen from the dead.

Muddy Tennis Shoes—and God Saw That It Was Good

May 1st, 2013 | Posted by Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider in Uncategorized - (1 Comments)

Spring—season of glowing daffodils, pink blossoms—and mud.  Scraping tennis shoes is a ritual of the season. With stick or screwdriver in hand, I focus on every crevice, the sole a labyrinth demanding concentration. Scraped out dirt returns to the earth to take part in the growing of daffodils and pink blossoms. In the beginning God created the cycles and saw that it was very good.

Throughout the day notice the blessings of creations. With God say, “That’s good!”

Promoting God’s Plan

April 29th, 2013 | Posted by Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

Several of us Sisters of Notre Dame, along with other laity and religious sisters, listened this past Saturday to Louis Savary’s presentation on Teilhard de Chardin. Having summarized Teilhard’s ideas on evolution, Savary told how the universe—and all in it—is becoming more conscious of its divine nature. Such consciousness has taken billions of years, but we can move the process along. How? Make connections. Initiate conversation. Reach out in compassion. Deepen friendship. Strengthen your expertise. Be grateful. In all things live the God within. Eventually we’ll all connect.

Then the universe pulsing with God-life will return to God in a grand embrace.

It’s Spring! It’s Baseball! It’s John 3:16!

April 23rd, 2013 | Posted by Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider in Uncategorized - (1 Comments)

Athletic events bring out signs to remind us that “God so loved the world” (John 3:16). The Greek word in Scripture is kosmos. God so loved the cosmos. If we are to love as God loved, then our love must be immense reaching far beyond Planet Earth. And scientists are telling us that the universe is expanding. So my love must expand. What can I do today to expand my love?  Will I remember people living hundreds of miles away in my prayer? Will I be mindful of the closeness of all humanity when I breathe in air that was in China two weeks ago? Will I be careful of earth’s precious resources? If I’ve been too myopic, now’s the time to throw out the first pitch to a new ball game of “Love the Cosmos.”

Mystery of Woundedness

April 15th, 2013 | Posted by Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

 

Love grows in the mystery of woundedness. All of us carry wounds. That’s OK. After all, Jesus Christ kept his five wounds after the resurrection. Like his, our wounds will be made beautiful some day. Then and now our wounds make us look more like Jesus.

Holding on to positive memories

March 20th, 2013 | Posted by Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider in Uncategorized - (3 Comments)

 The sculptures of Michelangelo; the beauty, climate, and food of Tuscany; the whole experience of Italy: these are the positive memories that brighten the windiest March day. The feelings of appreciation in my heart held there even a short while change me.

Scientifically I know that my heart vibrates at a different frequency, which every cell in my body picks up. Because the electromagnetic field of my heart is about five thousand times more powerful than that of my brain, my brain is less likely to focus on worry and stress and more likely to focus on love and creativity.  I’ve read that my heart’s electromagnetic signal can be measured from six to ten feet away, so anyone near me can probably benefit from my trip to Italy, too.

What if everyone in the world would hold positive memories for a few minutes every day?  Would our world receive the healing it so desperately needs?

Trust in God’s Provident Care

March 12th, 2013 | Posted by Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider in Uncategorized - (1 Comments)

 

Foundresses Sr. Mary Aloysia and Sr. Mary Ignatia

Our founding sister, Sister Maria Aloysia Wolbring, put herself into the hands of the dear God and, whether in Germany or the United States, did whatever needed to be done. Sometimes she was a local superior, sometimes not. She taught school, catechized, took care of the aged, managed a farm, struggled with American climate and language, served as advisor to the Superior General (although never a major superior herself), started many new affiliations, and most importantly prayed. In everything she trusted in God’s provident care.

Where are you being called to trust in God’s provident care?

Freedom of Heart

March 1st, 2013 | Posted by Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

“Do not let your hearts be troubled.” Jesus asks us for freedom of heart. As our country faces economic crises, as our Church prays for a new pope, as we start our day with its unknowns, we need freedom of heart.

I feel humbly proud of the response of religious sisters after the apostolic visitation and later assessments, for after prayer they responded with equanimity and freedom of heart. We sisters felt the overwhelming support and alliance of the laity. Together we must move forward to make our Church and world more receptive to the peace Christ promised. This requires freedom of heart, that combination of peace and courage so that nothing outside us can trouble our hearts.

Our future depends on love & caring

February 26th, 2013 | Posted by Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider in Uncategorized - (0 Comments)

Ever since Charles Darwin gave us the phrase “survival of the fittest,” we’ve believed that the best, the strongest, the fastest will endure. But is that true? Darwin used the phrase “survival of the fittest” only once in a book that spoke of love 95 times and moral sensitivity 92 times.

Darwin believed the prime mover of human evolution is not natural selection nor survival of the fittest, but rather our capacity for love and caring for one another. If today everyone would start believing that our future depends on love and caring, how different our lives would be. As we go about our day making little choices, let’s be mindful that our future depends upon love and caring.

Take a different look at Lent

February 21st, 2013 | Posted by Sr. Mary Valerie Schneider in Uncategorized - (3 Comments)

Many of us, perhaps, go into Lent with a sense of dread about what we can’t do and can’t have. So let’s approach  Lent differently this year.  How?  Let’s go to Cedar Point until March 28. Explore the rides!

The devil tempted Jesus to be self-serving, self-exulting, a real Power Tower. Isn’t that our Mean Streak, too? Jesus responds to the temptations with Scripture. Do we read the Bible regularly? It teaches us to be like the Frog Hopper.  F-R-O-G:  Fully Rely On God.

Lent leads us into the desert, where we become more aware of our egos and how they’re like the Scrambler that mixes up our thoughts so that our needs and wants are more important than those of others. To free ourselves from our small egos that always are afraid and seek control would be a great Lenten penance—a Matterhorn probably. We’ll be transformed into Christ, the Giant Wheel who turned “the worst thing, the ‘murder of God’ into the very best thing, the redemption of the world” (Richard Rohr).

 Traditionally we pray, fast, and give alms.  Do we? Or do we Dodgem? Most parishes provide a Millennium Force of opportunities, such as the Way of the Cross or parish missions. Don’t be a Maverick.  Be part of these events.

The ultimate purpose of Lent is to lead us to the Super Himalaya of the Church Year:  the Sacred Paschal Triduum (March 28-31). We enter into the very life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, an on-going reality, a Kingdom Carousel of joyous victory. One day we’ll meet the Gate Keeper. Will we be recognized as someone who rode the Corkscrew of the Lenten journey into the death and resurrection of Christ?