E-Flame Newsletter November 2016
We warmly welcome you and thank you for subscribing to receive the  Ignite Your Faith  E-Flame newsletter. Each month for the duration of the program, you will find information on current and past events, articles to cultivate your prayer life, and a calendar of upcoming prayer opportunities. We invite you to use this email as a one-stop resource center in growing your prayer life and Igniting Your Faith. 
Upcoming Prayer Opportunities
-Dec. 2nd, 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
 To sign up and for more information, CLICK HERE.
-Every Wednesday (when Faith Formation is in session), 4:30-7:30 p.m.

*Rosary For Life: 2nd Sunday of the month at 9:45 a.m. 
(Nov. 13, Dec. 11, Jan. 8)

*Rosary Society: 1st Thursday of the month at 12:30-2:00 p.m.

*Holy Days of Obligation
-Immaculate Conception. Dec. 8 at 9 a.m. or 5 p.m. 
-Mary Mother of God. Dec. 31 at 5 p.m. or Jan. 1 at 8:30 or 10:30 a.m.

*Women's Advent Retreat: "Tidings of Comfort and Joy" Dec. 10

*Advent Penance Service: Dec. 13 at 7-8:30 p.m..

*Festival of Lessons and Carols: Dec. 16 at 7-8:30 p.m.

*All Parish Retreat: Jan. 28



By Shelly Dau and Jonell Cella 

Sign up for Daily Devotional Emails
Dynamic Catholic daily devotional emails are delivered first thing in the morning and a great way to start your day. 

-Here are wonderful daily devotionals for women: www.blessedisshe.net

Listen to Christian Music 
Tune your radio to one of the Catholic/Christian radio stations. This was a suggestion I read about in The Four Signs of a Dynamic Catholic - and I immediately tuned my car radio to a Christian Music station and haven't changed it since. I love the tone it sets for my day when I immediately hear the beautiful words and messages through the art of song. 

KLOV - 99.9 FM KTIS - 98.5 FM Relevant Radio - 1330 AM Pandora
- Christian Rock Radio Pandora - Casting Crowns Radio 

Prayer Apps 
The  Dynamic Catholic Radio app puts all of the best resources and thinking of Matthew Kelly and his colleagues at your fingertips. Go here to download this app: www.dynamiccatholic.com/radio/ 

Prayer Resources for Teens
"Carpe Verbum" is Latin for 'Seize the Word.' We know we should be reading and praying the Bible every day... so why don't we actually do it? Carpe Verbum is a step-by-step guide to your daily prayer life, which is rooted in the Word of God." Check it out here: http://www.carpeverbum.org

Apps designed for teens: 
-LIFE TEEN      -FOCUS      -Steubenville      -40 day spiritual workout 

Online Resources
If you are looking for ways to pray with your family, check out this link: www.loyolapress.com/our-catholic-faith/family/praying-as-a-family 
Check out this site to get Novena Prayers delivered to your inbox and feel the power of praying together with 280,000+ people! www.praymorenovenas.com/ 

Printed Resources 
There are so many daily devotionals that can also inspire prayer. The following is a list to start: 
-Grace for the Moment by Max Lucado 
-Mother Teresa, Her Essential Wisdom by Carol Kelly-Gangi 
-The Power of a Praying Wife by Stormie Omartian 
-The Power of a Praying Husband by Stormie Omartian 
-First Light - Woman's Daily Devotional

For the full article and a complete list of prayer resources, CLICK HERE.

***For more opportunities and information, 
including an overview of the program, full articles, 
and up-to-date prayer resource list, 
click below***

Prayer Event Highlights

By Victoria Siedlecki

The first significant community event of the Ignite Your Faith program was the first of four small group book discussions which was facilitated by parishioner Tod Worner. The hour long event was broken up into a couple of sections that included a summary of each of the first two chapters, small group discussion time (handout questions provided), and time for a larger group discussion. A few of the discussion questions provided include, 1.) Can you tell when you are and are not spiritually healthy? What are the indicators? 2.) Do you have a daily routine of prayer? If so, what is it? If not, what would you like it to be after reading this chapter? The discussion questions and presentation by Tod was motivational, spiritually thoughtful, and accessible to all Catholics. Before the night ended, it could be heard that most if not all in attendance were able to have a sacred space for open discussion and questions with like-minded people. I personally left feeling spiritual fed, knowing the Holy Spirit was present in my heart and mind, all the while left my soul stirring for something more, moving me to make strides in my personal relationship with my Lord and my God. 

"Our prayers may be awkward. Our attempts may be feeble.
But since the power of prayer is in the One who hears it and
not in the one who says it, our prayers
do make a difference."
-Max Lucado-

By Victoria Siedlecki

The second major event within our community's "prayer" season was Prayer in Word and Song, a presentation led by Father Mike Joncas. The hour long worship and prayer experience followed the ideas behind the acronym A.C.T.S., which in order of importance stand for adoration, confession, thanksgiving, and supplication. Music director Richard Clarke along with four of St. Bart's finest cantors, provided the music for the evening. 

Father Joncas provided a comprehensive education on the four types of prayer using real life examples, Scripture readings, worship hymns, and a call for each of us to reflect on our own relationship and ways of communication with God. While each of us personally had a different experience, after the evening was complete, I had a chance to ask of few in attendance their thoughts. One person shared, "Father Mike Joncas' presentation on prayer, coupled with Richard's music and cantors, was most insightful and educational, spiritually uplifting, and emotionally touching. I loved it. I will incorporate two specific insights into my prayer life." Another shared, "My time at prayer is deeper and more meaningful after hearing Father Joncas' message set to music."

Come and Find the Quite Center-Shirley Erena Murray
Come and find the quiet center in the crowded life we lead,
 find the room for hope to enter, 
find the frame where we are freed:
 clear the chaos and the clutter,
 clear our eyes, 
that we can see all the things that really matter, 
be at peace and simply be.


Personal Prayer Story 

Prayer To St.Therese

Parishioner Terri Obermiller found herself worried about her son's struggle to find employment and sought peace through a novena to her patron saint, St. Therese. After concluding the novena, a miracle happened. A wilted rose of Terri's began to bloom again, giving her a sign from God that everything was going to work out. Just last week, God answered her prayers and her son was offered a job. PRAISE BE TO GOD!

"Prayer is, for me, an outburst from the heart; it is a simple glance darted upwards to Heaven; it is a cry of gratitude and of love in the midst of trial as in the midst of joy! In a word, it is something exalted, supernatural, which dilates the soul and unites it to God. Sometimes when I find myself, spiritually, in dryness so great that I cannot produce a single good thought, I recite very slowly a Pater or an Ave Maria; these prayers alone console me, they suffice, they nourish my soul."

St. Therese
Story of A Soul, Chapter X
Taken from http://www.littleflower.org/therese/words-of-st-therese/prayer/

Prayer Articles 

By Tod Worner

One year ago, when Pope Francis paid a week long visit to the United States, a telling photograph made the rounds on social media. The picture, for once, was not of the joyful Pontiff traveling the streets in his "pope-mobile". Instead, it focused on the throngs of eager onlookers pressed up against the barricade gates. At the moment two dozen people were captured furiously positioning their iPhones, finding the right screen, turning on the video, zooming in, zooming out just to immortalize the moment the Pope passed by. But before they knew it, the moment was gone. Did they savor it? Did they drink deep of the experience?

Probably not.

But it seems that one woman did. There in the midst of this frantic picture-taking rush was a diminutive, gray-haired woman smiling. Barely tall enough to peer over the fence, she had no phone and no camera. She was just a woman, the picture of serenity, drinking deep this extraordinary moment.

How often is our prayer life - our sacred and intimate encounter with God - like those two dozen people? How often are we fumbling, distracted and disengaged? How frequently do we miss the fruitfulness of the encounter because we are too busy, too anxious, or too confident that our way is the better way?

Pope Benedict XVI once observed,

"We are no longer able to hear God...there are too many frequencies filling our ears."

We need to be quiet. We need to step away from the crush of noise and information and opinion and emotion and schedules and expectation and simply be in the presence of God. When the Lord says, "Be still and know that I am God." (Psalm 46:10), the first duty is to be still.

To know God and to know ourselves, we must cultivate silence in our lives. It is the only way for us to reflect and grow. It is the only way to open ourselves to God's Divine Will. Soren Kierkegaard recognized that we must,
"allow the quiet and the retirement in which the Eternal may unfold a divine growth...It is true that a mirror has the quality of enabling a man to see his image in it, but for this he must stand still. If he rushes hastily by, he sees nothing."

During this season of renewal, this season to Ignite Our Faith, be quiet. Turn off the TV, put away the iPhone, silence the radio, find a place alone...and just be in the presence of God. At first, it will be daunting, overwhelming, even deafening in its silence. But before long, you will feel the stillness. And it will give you comfort. You will sense the opening of a broad and sacred fertile ground where you and God can just talk. Talk about your day. Talk about your family. Voice your fears. Confess your
shortcomings. Shake your fist. Give him your thanks. Tell him you'll try harder. Just talk.

And He will answer, but you must pay attention...close attention. In minutes or years, in ways simple and ways unimaginable, He will answer.
So be like that little elderly lady in the picture gently smiling, quietly watching, but profoundly taking it all in.

Be still.
Be still and know that I am God.

From the October 23, 2016 Bulletin, St. Bartholomew Catholic Faith Community, Wayzata, MN 55391
By Shelly Dau

St. Augustine, an early proponent of prayer through music, is credited with once saying, " He who sings, prays twice." 

Music has the power to communicate messages and emotions that simple words cannot capture.  It can be one of the most powerful forms of prayer that we can offer. 
We are certainly blessed here at St. Bart's with a music ministry that is second to none!  Have you ever considered how closely the music is tied to Father Mike's homilies?  Have you found yourself overcome with emotion hearing his words put to music?  That does not happen by mistake.  It is a very intentional effort to make music a prayer form that is an extension of the day's readings and homily. 
Music is powerful and universal.  It unites us in ways other forms of communication cannot.  It is a beautiful form of prayer, and one I would highly recommend. 
For the full article and to understand the importance of including prayer through music into your life, CLICK HERE.
By Father Mike Van Sloun

"The  Ignite Your Faith spiritual initiative is underway. None of us have achieved the heights of holiness. Every single one of us has plenty of room to make spiritual headway. This two-year process is a blessed time to grow closer to God and to become more dynamic Catholics."  

For the full article and to learn why prayer is the first sign of a dynamic Catholic, CLICK HERE.
By Father Mike Van Sloun

"Ways to Pray with Scripture. 
Center yourself: be quiet and get focused. Begin with a prayer to the Holy Spirit to enlighten the mind and soften the heart. Read the text: a single verse, a few verses, or a longer passage. Pause. Meditate: mull over what you have read. Ponder the message. Listen. Absorb. Be inspired. Take guidance. Repeat a word or phrase. Memorize a verse. If the mind wanders, as it often will, re-center and re-read. Ask yourself, "What is God saying to me? What truths does God want to convey to me? What is God's will for me?"" 

For the full article and to learn why praying with scripture is conducive to a dynamic Catholic's life, CLICK HERE

We hope you enjoyed the first edition of St. Bart's E-Flame newsletter! If you have a prayer story you would like to share in an upcoming newsletter or thoughts about how Iginte Your Faith is changing your faith life, please let us know. Email Victoria Siedlecki at siedlecki0906@msn.com