Author Archives: ceciliamaria

About ceciliamaria

I am a daughter, sister, friend, psuedo-aunt, and fairy godmother. I am also a lover of life, Truth and beauty, as manifested through Catholicism and the artistic expression of dance.

A Day of Thanksgiving

Today is a day of thanksgiving, as well as reminiscing and contemplation.  Today we remember how our lives, especially Rosario’s, changed for the better two years ago.  Why for the better?  Well, the outcome of the shooting on June 29, 2009 could have easily been for the worse.  I don’t often think about how close we came to losing Rosario that day – it’s too heart-wrenching to dwell on – but the truth is Rosario could have died.  But she didn’t.  She didn’t.  God, in his infinite mercy and wisdom, wasn’t quite finished with his beautiful vessel named Rosario.  So He intervened and thus we find ourselves two years later celebrating the anniversary of Rosario’s second chance at life.

As many of you are aware, it has not been an easy life.  Rosario’s physical recovery has been harrowing, not to mention the emotional struggle.  There have been countless milestones alongside a myriad of monotonous moments.  In many ways this second year was harder than the first.  It was much more emotionally and mentally challenging as Rosario traveled to and from Los Angeles to testify at the trial and make a statement at the sentencing hearing.  Emotional milestones are not as obvious as physical one, which is rather anti-climactic.  Rosario did have a few physical accomplishments throughout the year which were celebrated with gusto, especially when she ran a 5k road race.  Easy or not, Rosario continues to carry her cross with grace and dignity.

“These men, conquering all human frailty, shed their blood and helped the Church grow.  By sharing the cup of the Lord’s suffering, they became friends of God” (ref: Matt 20:22-23).  This was the entrance song for today’s mass in honor of the Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul.  I found these words quite fitting for today, not only in relation to these great saints, but also in relation to the events of two years ago.  In a small way, Rosario ‘conquered human frailty’.  She shed her blood and the Church rallied to her aid in prayer.  She is ‘sharing the cup of the Lord’s suffering’ and has become a ‘friend of God’.  This is why I said Rosario’s life changed for the better.  Not only is she alive, but she is living a deeper friendship and intimacy with the Lord.

Today is a day of thanksgiving and celebration.  Are the struggles over?  Not at all!  The trial is not over, and Rosario still mourns the loss of the life she once knew.  But God does not abandon his friends.  He is with us always, just as He was two years ago when He protected Rosario from the bullet that pierced her chest and allowed her to live.  We have much to be thankful for and much to celebrate today!

Posted by Cecilia


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The Hope of Justice

Dedicated Prayer Warriors of Rosario,

It boggles my mind that this legal escapade is not behind us yet, but here we are once more waiting for the next court date. If you remember from Rosario’s posts before Christmas, sentencing was postponed until March. I’m not sure what the actual date is, but it is coming soon. Rosario is as ready as any of us for this aspect of her journey to be done and over with. The trial has been a major roadblock in Rosario’s emotional recovery and she is looking forward to having closure and moving on.

That being said, this final chapter is sending Rosario on an emotional roller coaster. Nothing about this legal process has turned out the way anyone predicted it would, which concerns Rosario about the hoped outcome of sentencing. She is growing more and more anxious about it, considering the shenanigans of the past two scheduled sentencing hearings. She has been having anxiety dreams the past several nights and they are getting worse.

Please keep Rosario in your prayers. These have been and will continue to be very stressful days and nights. She is very concerned about the anticipated appeal that will be filed at the hearing. All Rosario wants is justice and closure. Please pray that she will have peace as the hearing approaches, and pray for the judge and everyone else involved.

Your prayers have always been appreciated. Rosario remembers all of you in her prayers each day. Please continue to join Rosario in prayer as we hopefully near the end of the judicial journey.


Posted by Cecilia

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Divine Mercy Novena – Day 9

Today bring to Me the Souls who have become Lukewarm,

and immerse them in the abyss of My mercy. These souls wound My Heart most painfully. My soul suffered the most dreadful loathing in the Garden of Olives because of lukewarm souls. They were the reason I cried out: ‘Father, take this cup away from Me, if it be Your will.’ For them, the last hope of salvation is to run to My mercy.”

Most compassionate Jesus, You are Compassion Itself. I bring lukewarm souls into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart. In this fire of Your pure love, let these tepid souls who, like corpses, filled You with such deep loathing, be once again set aflame. O Most Compassionate Jesus, exercise the omnipotence of Your mercy and draw them into the very ardor of Your love, and bestow upon them the gift of holy love, for nothing is beyond Your power.

Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon lukewarm souls who are nonetheless enfolded in the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. Father of Mercy, I beg You by the bitter Passion of Your Son and by His three-hour agony on the Cross: Let them, too, glorify the abyss of Your mercy. Amen.

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Divine Mercy Novena – Day 8

Today bring to Me the Souls who are in the prison of Purgatory,

and immerse them in the abyss of My mercy. Let the torrents of My Blood cool down their scorching flames. All these souls are greatly loved by Me. They are making retribution to My justice. It is in your power to bring them relief. Draw all the indulgences from the treasury of My Church and offer them on their behalf. Oh, if you only knew the torments they suffer, you would continually offer for them the alms of the spirit and pay off their debt to My justice.”

Most Merciful Jesus, You Yourself have said that You desire mercy; so I bring into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart the souls in Purgatory, souls who are very dear to You, and yet, who must make retribution to Your justice. May the streams of Blood and Water which gushed forth from Your Heart put out the flames of Purgatory, that there, too, the power of Your mercy may be celebrated.

Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon the souls suffering in Purgatory, who are enfolded in the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. I beg You, by the sorrowful Passion of Jesus Your Son, and by all the bitterness with which His most sacred Soul was flooded: Manifest Your mercy to the souls who are under Your just scrutiny. Look upon them in no other way but only through the Wounds of Jesus, Your dearly beloved Son; for we firmly believe that there is no limit to Your goodness and compassion. Amen.

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Divine Mercy Novena – Day 7

“Today bring to Me the Souls who especially venerate and glorify My Mercy*,

and immerse them in My mercy. These souls sorrowed most over my Passion and entered most deeply into My spirit. They are living images of My Compassionate Heart. These souls will shine with a special brightness in the next life. Not one of them will go into the fire of hell. I shall particularly defend each one of them at the hour of death.”

Most Merciful Jesus, whose Heart is Love Itself, receive into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart the souls of those who particularly extol and venerate the greatness of Your mercy. These souls are mighty with the very power of God Himself. In the midst of all afflictions and adversities they go forward, confident of Your mercy; and united to You, O Jesus, they carry all mankind on their shoulders. These souls will not be judged severely, but Your mercy will embrace them as they depart from this life.

Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon the souls who glorify and venerate Your greatest attribute, that of Your fathomless mercy, and who are enclosed in the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. These souls are a living Gospel; their hands are full of deeds of mercy, and their hearts, overflowing with joy, sing a canticle of mercy to You, O Most High! I beg You O God:

Show them Your mercy according to the hope and trust they have placed in You. Let there be accomplished in them the promise of Jesus, who said to them that during their life, but especially at the hour of death, the souls who will venerate this fathomless mercy of His, He, Himself, will defend as His glory. Amen.

*The text leads one to conclude that in the first prayer directed to Jesus, Who is the Redeemer, it is “victim” souls and contemplatives that are being prayed for; those persons, that is, that voluntarily offered themselves to God for the salvation of their neighbor (see Col 1:24; 2 Cor 4:12). This explains their close union with the Savior and the extraordinary efficacy that their invisible activity has for others. In the second prayer, directed to the Father from whom comes “every worthwhile gift and every genuine benefit,”we recommend the “active” souls, who promote devotion to The Divine Mercy and exercise with it all the other works that lend themselves to the spiritual and material uplifting of their brethren.

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Divine Mercy Novena – Day 6

“Today bring to Me the Meek and Humble Souls and the Souls of  Little Children,

and immerse them in My mercy. These souls most closely resemble My Heart. They strengthened Me during My bitter agony. I saw them as earthly Angels, who will keep vigil at My altars. I pour out upon them whole torrents of grace. I favor humble souls with My confidence.”

Most Merciful Jesus, You yourself have said, “Learn from Me for I am meek and humble of heart.” Receive into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart all meek and humble souls and the souls of little children. These souls send all heaven into ecstasy and they are the heavenly Father’s favorites. They are a sweet-smelling bouquet before the throne of God; God Himself takes delight in their fragrance. These souls have a permanent abode in Your Most Compassionate Heart, O Jesus, and they unceasingly sing out a hymn of love and mercy.

Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon meek souls, upon humble souls, and upon little children who are enfolded in the abode which is the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. These souls bear the closest resemblance to Your Son. Their fragrance rises from the earth and reaches Your very throne. Father of mercy and of all goodness, I beg You by the love You bear these souls and by the delight You take in them: Bless the whole world, that all souls together may sing out the praises of Your mercy for endless ages. Amen.

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Divine Mercy Novena – Day 5

Today bring to Me the Souls of those who have separated themselves from My Church*,

and immerse them in the ocean of My mercy. During My bitter Passion they tore at My Body and Heart, that is, My Church. As they return to unity with the Church My wounds heal and in this way they alleviate My Passion.”

Most Merciful Jesus, Goodness Itself, You do not refuse light to those who seek it of You. Receive into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart the souls of those who have separated themselves from Your Church. Draw them by Your light into the unity of the Church, and do not let them escape from the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart; but bring it about that they, too, come to glorify the generosity of Your mercy.

Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon the souls of those who have separated themselves from Your Son’s Church, who have squandered Your blessings and misused Your graces by obstinately persisting in their errors. Do not look upon their errors, but upon the love of Your own Son and upon His bitter Passion, which He underwent for their sake, since they, too, are enclosed in His Most Compassionate Heart. Bring it about that they also may glorify Your great mercy for endless ages. Amen.

*Our Lord’s original words here were “heretics and schismatics,” since He spoke to Saint Faustina within the context of her times. As of the Second Vatican Council, Church authorities have seen fit not to use those designations in accordance with the explanation given in the Council’s Decree on Ecumenism (n.3). Every pope since the Council has reaffirmed that usage. Saint Faustina herself, her heart always in harmony with the mind of the Church, most certainly would have agreed. When at one time, because of the decisions of her superiors and father confessor, she was not able to execute Our Lord’s inspirations and orders, she declared: “I will follow Your will insofar as You will permit me to do so through Your representative. O my Jesus ” I give priority to the voice of the Church over the voice with which You speak to me” (497). The Lord confirmed her action and praised her for it.

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