I must have missed it this morning. I got up early. Thank you, Guardian Angel. Seriously, I have been in the habit over the past few years of trying to draw nearer to my angel, getting him more involved in my life, showing him my gratitude, and calling upon his most powerful help. I asked him last night to make sure I was awake this morning for my prayers and the early Mass. I find on days like this that, having asked his help, he delivers. I woke up minutes before my alarm. The thought was in my head, nagging me to push beyond the limits of my sleep-deprived body, telling me to get out of bed, drop to my knees, and say my prayers. Before I knew it, I was on my way to Mass. I know it was him and I am very grateful.
But the thing I must have missed is the Rogation Days. Father said the Mass for St. John Baptist de la Salle. Don’t get me wrong. St. John is a patron of teachers and I have called on his intercession countless times over the years. It wasn’t until tonight, however, that I realized today is the first of the three Rogation Days and that there should probably be some fasting tacked on to my daily prayers. Hence, the bread… Did I fast today? Well, no. As I said, I only realized at the end of the day. But it is a great reminder to me that fasting is vital to the Christian life.
It also dawned on me that, like her nineteenth century counterpart in the Communion of Saints St. Therese, St. Rita is associated with roses. Now, rarely have I prayed the novena and actually received a rose at the end but others have reported this gift. Personally, although I detest gardening, I love roses. Rather than to expect her to send one to me, this year, in thanksgiving for the great grace of being able to spread devotion to her, I think I will offer a rose or two to my dear saint. Who knows? Maybe she will send a few my way as well. You who sent petitions remain listed by name in my daily novena. Also, if for any reason I have neglected to reply to an email lately, please remind me by sending another. I do love the interaction I have had with all of the readers of this blog. I wake up most mornings flabbergasted that 1) people are reading my writing and 2) you seem to enjoy the conversation. Again, you are all in my daily prayers.
Speaking of prayers, please offer one for me if you think of it. In a couple of days I am embarking on a long roadtrip with my wife and kids. Where to, you ask? The short answer is everywhere. You will see as we travel and I update the blog with new pictures and stories. The truth is that we are a roadtrip family and as we’ve taken these trips in the past we’ve discovered that sometimes it’s better to have a general idea of where we’re going and then simply get off the beaten path along the way. The purpose of our trip is business related but it hearkens back to 2016 when we did something similar. On that trip we covered over 15,000 miles in the course of 8 weeks. So pray for our safety and the success of our trip, please. And say a prayer for a young man named Christopher. He works at the agency where we rented our vehicle for the journey. We had booked a minivan due to the dramatic increase in the cost of everything. However, from experience I know that minivans, while normally fine, are no fun for the driver or passengers on a trip like this. I may have tossed a petition into the novena the past few days for an upgrade. Young Christopher at Avis was apparently the instrument for God in answering that prayer. An Expedition it is then.
And before you get to that one, say a prayer that my head doesn’t swell too much. No, it wouldn’t be from pride (this time). While inspecting the large SUV we rented for the trip I accidentally slammed to top of my Irish melon into the corner of the rear liftgate. Thus I myself have become the first victim of Harvey’s World Tour ’23. It’s a good thing I’ve been trying to popularize men wearing hats again.
St. Christopher, pray for us!