Wednesday, March 27, 2013

And now, time for a little rest.

My dear friends, Laudetur Jesus Cristus!


Thank you so much for all of your prayers and support so far, since I launched at the beginning of Lent. What an amazing six weeks it’s been! Sponsorships have been coming in steadily since the wonderful people at EWTN/CNA/National Catholic Register ran anarticle about me… on the very day that the conclave began, and many people were exposed to my vocation and marathon effort. Currently the meter at lies at just over 12%!! I’ll be making a payment on my student loans soon after Easter, and update you on the progress from then! Receiving your prayer requests every day has been such an amazing grace. I am honored and humbled by the generosity of the Lord’s faithful servants, and by your trust in my vocation, that you would share with me such beautiful and personal prayer intentions. I take your intentions with me on every training run, to daily mass, and to our Lord in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.


Enough people heard about Litany Run that I now have sponsors from 32 of our United States, as well as sponsors from Mexico, Canada, England, Scotland, the Philippines and even Malaysia! I feel my Birthday Challenge was a success even though not all of the states are represented yet. On March 25th I commended you all to Our Lady, (since it is usually her Feast of the Annunciation!) and offered my mass in thanksgiving for all that you have given me. I pray that you will keep helping me spread the word, my friends. Especially if you know anyone who could use some prayers and would like to support me from AK, AZ, AR, HI, ID, MA,MD, MS, MT, NH, ND, NM, OR, RI, SD, UT, VT, & WV!


At this point in my training the runs are getting longer and more challenging. On March 24th, 2012 I ran my first half marathon (13.1mi) in Queens, NY… and it was tough but rewarding! This year on March 24th, I ran 16 miles and it didn’t feel as tough as I remember that race feeling! Praise Jesus. During this week’s long run I was able to get in all 20 Mysteries of the Rosary, commending each set of mysteries to one of Litany Run’s patron saints (St. Padre Pio, Bl. Pope JPII, Bl. Teresa of Calcutta, and Bl. Pier Giorgio Frasatti), and for your prayer intentions.
Lately I have found myself focusing a lot on the sufferings of Our Lady during the Passion of Our Lord. (Probably because I am smack in the middle of renewing my Consecration to her. If you have never read St. Louis de Montfort’s True Devotion or considered doing the 34-day Consecration… I humbly implore you to start researching and praying about it immediately.) One of virtues that I am striving to practice very particularly right now is “mortification in all things,” which St. Louis names as one of Our Lady’s ten principal virtues. The others are her profound humility, her lively faith, her blind obedience, her continual mental prayer, her surpassing purity, her ardent charity, her heroic patience, her angelic sweetness, and her divine wisdom. As a future canoness (God willing), my prayers to Jesus through His mother are that I may be given the grace to desire imitating her in everything I do – for she was the first Christian, the most beloved of all women throughout time and history, and suffered silently at the horror of Christ’s Passion… for love of Him whom she raised from conception, and Him who would be raised for all of our salvation. She is the most perfect model of Christianity that anyone could ever look to and, if the Lord desires me to become a consecrated religious – taking her name, her habit, and vowing to do all I do for His glory as she did – then there is no reason for me not to try my very best to be like her even now. And especially now. And this very much involves embracing both the physical and spiritual challenges that are starting to arise within these weeks of my marathon training.
I trust in the Lord and even now, as we draw closer to Easter, the Divine Office (around which my life will someday revolve) is presenting us with psalms and readings about perseverance. The spiritual challenges that are arising don’t really stem from any fear about my vocation or doubt about anything that God has planned for me. Rather He is granting me the grace of compassion for those who send me prayer requests about some very difficult situations. It seems like I am gaining more and more assurance of my vocation to a life of prayer, through receiving the prayer requests of people who so desperately need and desire the mercy of our Lord.  Your prayer requests touch my heart, my friends. I am honored and humbled that you share them with me – and the very act of your requesting prayers moves me to try to run as perfectly as I can, especially during those moments when I feel like I am about to run out of energy. Some things can only be accomplished through prayer and fasting – and physical sacrifice. The prophet Simeon told Our Lady that a sword would pierce her heart too. She suffered at the sight of her Son on the cross. But she did this quietly, because she knew it was His purpose. She knew it was for the glory of God, and that He commanded it to happen for the sake of our salvation. In the same way, I pray that the Lord will give me the grace to continue moving forward on this journey of running a marathon in thanksgiving, and in petition for the things that you need in your life.
This past weekend my parents accompanied me to the Bethlehem Priory of St. Joseph for the first time. For me, it was a beautiful and joyful 24 hours, wherein they had a chance to meet Mother Mary Augustine and a few of the canonesses. We also took a few young ladies from my home parish so that they could get a little taste of the contemplative life. They had an opportunity for a Q&A session with one a couple of the sisters, and it was so lovely to see them and my parents interacting with my future community. Mother Mary Augustine even took us on a tour of the new monastery building! I was excited that my parents had the chance to see where I will be living and spending my days, before the sisters officially move in and it becomes cloistered.
Mother Mary Augustine giving us a tour of the new monastery building and the grounds outside.

This morning I had my last run before Easter. 7mi around my town with all of your prayer requests, and especially for all the poor and suffering, as well as those who feel like they are alone in this world. Now it is time to give my tired feet a rest, while I spend the rest of Holy Week meditating on how my tiny blisters and little bit of soreness are absolutely microscopic pains compared to how much Christ suffered for my sins. In a few hours I will be heading back there to spend the rest of Holy Week with the canonesses. I thank God for this opportunity to rest and recover, in preparation for the next 5.5 weeks of training before race day on May 5th. I will be taking all of your prayer requests with me and presenting them to Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament throughout the next few days. Please continue to share my story and my cause with your friends and family. Some exciting things are coming up for me with Litany Run after Easter… so stay tuned, and please pray for me!


May the Lord bless you abundantly, and I am praying that you will become a saint!



Totus Tuus


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