"We need to make a national examination of conscience. Why do we need a national examination of conscience?? Because suddenly we Americans seem to be panicking. It's time to stop moaning and wringing our hands. It's true; the country is in a crisis. But we have always been in a crisis. We ought to thank God we are. Because then we always have something to test us -- like a piece of steel that stays strong precisely because it is enduring great pressure."
These extremely timely words were spoken on February 7, 1968 by Sargent Shriver in a speech he gave at Notre Dame University. With the economic situation looking bleak, mayhem and riots running rampant in other parts of the world and our own country's Occupy movement growing larger week by week, it is easy to see the glass half empty. I don't know what the answers are. I do know we have overcome difficult challenges in the past and we will endure many more in the future. I take comfort in Sargent Shrivers words and trust we will rise to this test --"like a piece of steel that stays strong precisely because it is enduring great pressure."
Faith and prayer. It may sound innocent and naive but it's all I've got at the moment. And history. We've got that on our side too.
This is the last home game of the 2011 football season at Notre Dame. I took a stroll through the campus and soaked in the tranquil beauty of the autumn afternoon. While we have lots of historical landmarks that are well known and visited by many each weekend, I needed the road less traveled, the contemplative side of the University. Even our wonderful Grotto was already filled with pilgrims lighting candles and offering prayers. With some of our boys injured and unsure of their futures, I needed time alone to pray, dry my tears and come back to peace. It was espeicially hard this week given the terrible tragedy involving the Penn State football program. Those broken little boys with grief filled eyes haunt me and I have not even seen an actual photo. But they are there, in their silence, breaking my heart and causing tears to well in pain and confusion.
Our Blessed Lady of the Lake
Look down on all of your young warriors this weekend
from each and every University.
Protect them with your Grace,
guide their actions on and off the field of battle.
Heal their young hearts
as we move through these dark days tainted with grief.
as you gather all the innocent victims of child abuse
We recently found an afternoon to take our family Christmas card photo. It was not an easy thing to maneuver this year. Tori is away at school, Alex is working full time and Stevie was coaching high school football which starts in the afternoon and goes way into the evening most nights. Not to mention our "other" football schedule and a wedding in the beautiful mountains of northern Georgia for Steve and I.
There was much grumbling from everyone, espeicially our photographer, but we found a date and proceed to carry on our 25 year ritual which is a continuation of my husband's family tradition.
Now the hard part begins. The two "boys" are in South Africa for a month working in an aids clinic. Tori is back at school happy as a lark in her new routine. Alex is busy, busy, busy with work, friends and working out. The hard part is selecting a photo that everyone likes. I only have 40 or so to go through this year so that should make it easier. Any family members who read this post will remember our "blue" card a few years back. I am still getting grief for that one. Wish me luck!
Another football weekend has come and gone. We wait all year for football season to begin and it is over in a blink of an eye. I am sure that is a metaphor for life in general as are most things with football. Team work, family, moving through adversity, re-grouping after a loss, celebrating the good times, forgiveness, etc., etc. We love football in this family and most espeicially Notre Dame Football.