I love prayer. Prayer fills me with joy and happiness, and I pray on a daily basis.
By chance, I happened upon a #OneHailMaryCampaign om Twitter and followed what the feed was about. During the Lenten season (17th Feb-3rd April), Catholics all over the world were praying a ‘Hail Mary’ a day for different reasons. Some were personal, others were more general. As someone who loves Mary, the Rosary (of which is an incredibly powerful prayer!) and the Saints, I did my own #OneHailMaryCampaign as part of my Lenten journey. I have also included some of the Saints in Heaven in this post too. The Saints are our extended family who can intercede for us when we pray, and, through their Heavenly help, can enhance the power of our prayers ❤
Day 1; I prayed a Hail Mary for Our Ladies’ Intentions. To help bring more love, peace, healing and reparation to the world.
Day 2; I prayed a Hail Mary for the Unborn. On a daily basis, I pray the Rosary to End Abortion, and ask God and Mary to save babies from abortion, and for healing and forgiveness caused by the pain of abortion.
Day 4; I prayed Hail Mary for the Souls in Purgatory. Saint Gertrude the Great, whom was given the prayer to release 1,000 souls from Purgatory into Heaven, pray for us.
Day 5; Hail Mary for the Persecuted Church. The Persecuted Church is my devotion and I love serving the Persecuted Church! The Blood of the Martyrs is the Seed of the Church! May she continue to thrive and grow amidst persecution. All Catholic Martyrs in Heaven, pray for us.
Day 6; I prayed Hail Mary for those who are lonely and isolated. Due to COVID, many people have become lonely and are unable to see family members. Saint Rita of Cascia, pray for us.
Day 7; I prayed a Hail Mary for those who have no one to pray for them. Your name is written in the palm of God’s hands – He will never forget you! Mary, Mother of God, pray for us.
Day 8; I prayed a Hail Mary for those who are sick. May Mother Mary comfort you, and miraculous healings occur. Saint Angela Merici, pray for us.
Day 10; I prayed a Hail Mary for those who are bereft and grieving. Know that your loved ones in Heaven are happy, at peace, and may perpetual light shine upon them. Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, pray for us.
Day 11; I prayed a Hail Mary for those who struggle with mental health. Mental illness is rife, and so many people are afflicted with mental health issues. Let’s all be kinder and more compassionate to each other. Saint Dymphna, pray for us.
Day 12; Hail Mary for those who are hurting from things they do not discuss. People fight battles everyday, and sometimes are fighting battles for years without anyone knowing. As mentioned above, let’s show more love and kindness to each other. Saint Jude, and Saint Camillus de Lellis, pray for us
Day 13, I prayed a Hail Mary for prisoners of conscience. People who are wrongly imprisoned for their religious beliefs and suffer human rights violations – these will not go unnoticed by God. Saint Leonard, pray for us.
Day 14, I prayed a Hail Mary for those who have been falsely accused of crimes and actions they did not commit. May justice be served, and those falsely accused be exonerated. Saint Gerard, pray for us.
Day 15, I prayed a Hail Mary for all front line staff. Throughout the pandemic, they have worked tirelessly on our behalf. Saint Florian, Patron Saint of Firefighters, pray for us. Saints Agatha, Camillus, Catherine of Sienna and Elizabeth of Hungary, Patron Saints of Nurses (and many other things) pray for us.
Day 16; I prayed Hail Mary for Addicts. May they find help and treatment, and overcome their addictions. Saint Maximillian Kolbe, pray for us.
Day 17, I prayed a Hail Mary for those who are unemployed and struggling to find work, whether long term, or due to COVID – keep going!. Saint Cajetan, Patron Saint of the Unemployed, pray for us.
Day 18, I prayed a Hail Mary for those who are suicidal. Mental illness is a prison which many become trapped in. Saints Dymphna, Benedict Joseph Labre, Christina the Astonishing, Matt Talbott, and Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us.
Day 19, I prayed a Hail Mary for Pro-Life Activists who do incredible work fighting for babies in the womb and protecting the most vulnerable. Saints Maximillian Kolbe, Gianna Beretta Molla, Mother Theresa, Our Lady of Gualdalupe, Pope John Paul 2nd, Gerard Majella, pray for us.
Day 20, I prayed a Hail Mary for children who are abused at home. Children are the little flowers of Heaven that must be protected, guided and loved. Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop, Patron Saint of Abuse Survivors, pray for us.
Day 22, I prayed a Hail Mary for Refugees. When people have to flee from their homes and leave everything behind due to war, persecution, or conflict, we have a duty to open our hearts ad our homes, and show love to our neighbors. Saint Francis Xavier Cabrini, Patron Saint of Refugees, pray for us.
Day 23, I prayed a Hail Mary for the homeless. May we do more to serve and help those on the streets, and show them love and compassion, and strive to do more to prevent homelessness, and keep people safe inside a home. Saint Benedict Joseph Labre, the Beggar Saint and Patron Saint of the Homeless, pray for us.
Day 24, I prayed a Hail Mary for survivors of domestic violence. Domestic violence spiked by 49% during the lockdown, and I know many people who are survivors of domestic violence… Saint Rita of Cascia, pray for us.
Day 25, I prayed a Hail Mary for our priests. Men who are called to the Priesthood lead wonderful lives and are imitators of Christ! Saint John Vianney, Patron Saint of Priests, pray for us.
Day 26, I prayed a Hail Mary for those who have lost children. Your children in Heaven love you and are with you always. Know that they are at peace, and send down love from Heaven. Saints Perpetua and Felicitas, pray for us.
Day 27, I prayed a Hail Mary for atheists and agnostics. Take a leap of faith and experience the wonderful love of our God! Saint Jude and Saint Monica, mother of Saint Augustine of Hippo, pray for us.
Day 28, I prayed a Hail Mary for those who are poor, needy and hungry. Your needs do not go unnoticed, and God will provide. May we also show love and support to each other when in times of need. Saint Francis of Assisi, pray for us.
Day 29 I prayed a Hail Mary for those who suffer injustice. Injustices and human rights abuses across all over the world, and we need to do more to fight and protect other’s human rights. Saint Martin De Porres, pray for us.
Day 30, I prayed a Hail Mary for the police. To all our police on the front line who transform lives, protect the people, and enforce the law, thank you for your service! Saint Michael the Archangel, Patron Saint of the police, pray for us.
Day 31, I prayed a Hail Mary for doctors, ambulance staff and nurses. Thank you for helping those who are sick and providing care for people at the hospital. Saint Agatha of Sicily, pray for us.
Day 32, I prayed a Hail Mary for the fire service. Men and women who save people from fires and protect others. Saint Florian, pray for us.
Day 33, I prayed a Hail Mary for teachers and educators. Those who inspire students and strive to help them become the best that they can be! Saints Thomas Aquinas, Catherine of Alexandria and Peter of Alexandria, pray for us.
Day 34; I prayed a Hail Mary for animals and the environment and that we take better care of it. God made us stewards of the Earth, and we have a duty to protect it, and protect animals from abuse and the prevent the destruction of their habitat. Saint Francis of Assisi, pray for us.
Day 35. I prayed a Hail Mary for those who are victims of modern day slavery. I pray that organisations that help rescue survivors of this atrocity, and they live the rest of their lives in freedom. Saint Josephine Bakhita, pray for us.
Day 36; I prayed a Hail Mary for those who are exploited, degraded and abused in the porn industry. Pornography defiles and destroys people, and all pornographic producers and organisations need to be shut down, and a stance is taken against this vile scourge on society. Saint Seraphim of Sarov and Saint Rita, pray for us,
Day 37; I prayed a Hail Mary for those who who have lost parents and are grieving. Know that your parents in Heaven are watching over you, and are still with you, always. Saint Jerome Emiliani, pray for us.
Day 39, I prayed a Hail Mary against the pandemic. Saint Corona, Patron Saint against pandemics, pray for us.
Day 40; I prayed a Hail Mary that I deepen my relationship with Christ, and that everyone I pray for experiences the transformational power of God’s love in their lives ❤ May all the Catholic Saints pray for us!
EWTN (2021) Roman Catholic Church Patron Saints. Available online at: https://www.ewtn.com/catholicism/library/roman-catholic-patron-saints-5730 Accessed on 21/02/2021
EWTN (2021) ‘Global Catholic Television Network’ Available online at: https://www.ewtn.com Accessed on 25/02/2021
Catholic Ireland (2021) ‘July 6th; Saint Maria Goretti, (1890-1902) Martyr.‘ Available online at: https://www.catholicireland.net/saintoftheday/st-maria-goretti-1890-1902-martr/ Accessed on 25/02/2021
EWTN (2021) ‘Church Proclaims Mary Mother of God’ Available online at: https://www.ewtn.com/catholicism/library/church-proclaims-mary-mother-of-god-8055 Accessed on 25/02/2021
Britannica (2021) ‘Saint Mary MacKillop’ Available online at: https://www.britannica.com/biography/Saint-Mary-MacKillop Accessed on 25/02/2021
Catholic Cemeteries in Ireland (2021) ‘Saint Felicitas of Rome: Patron of Grieving Parents’ Available online at: https://clevelandcatholiccemeteries.wordpress.com/2019/06/21/saint-felicitas-of-rome-patron-of-grieving-parents/ Accessed on 25/02/2021
Every morning, I wake up and I thank God for another beautiful day. I thank God for all the people in my life, and everything that He has done for me and others too. God has blessed me, and done so much more for me, than what I deserve!
Gratitude – appreciating the little things in life make a big difference to your outlook on life and makes you a happier person.
This blog post is a little different, in that I am encouraging all readers to show gratitude to those around them, and appreciate what you have, and the people you have in life.
Today, tell 3 people (or more) that you love them, and give different reasons as to why you love them and what you appreciate about them.
Look around you – look at what you appreciate in life. Whether it’s being outdoors and enjoying the sunshine/fresh air/birds singing/the beauty of nature, etc.
In the evening, write down 3-5 things you are grateful for. Whether that’s the people in your life, something in nature, or anything else that you are grateful for!
https://www.wirralglobe.co.uk/news/19012342.new-scheme-urges-domestic-abuse-victims-ask-ani/ The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a whole range of issues for so many people. Everything from job losses, businesses closing down, people being unable to leave the house, people panic buying and stock piling. There has also been a sharp increase in mental health issues, loneliness, isolation, and fears about what the future holds. […]Lockdown and Locked In
This blog post is dedicated to my incredible father! Like my previous blog post Most important life lessons my beloved mum taught me here are some of the most important life lessons that my dad taught me ❤
- Be there for family and friends when life gets tough Life is never always easy, and can at times throw unexpected challenges at us. Bereavement, sudden illness, a life-changing event, can throw us off course and we need to support each other when life gets tough.
2. Don’t sweat the small stuff Enjoy life – have a laugh, and don’t let the little things get you down!
3. Listen and show support when someone is struggling, especially when someone is grieving, or dealing with mental illness. Anxiety, depression and other mental health illnesses can last for years. Bereavement is a hard thing to cope with too. Listening and being there for family and family who are struggling with their mental health, or when someone is grieving, can be a massive help to them. Showing you care can bring a ray of light into someone’s life when they’re down.
4. Rise to a challenge! When a challenge rears its head – go for it! Push yourself and try something new!
5. Have a good laugh! Having a laugh is the best thing for your wellbeing! Laughter is the best medicine, and it’s good to have a laugh with family and friends as often as possible!
Love you dad! ❤
The Blood of the Martyrs is the Seed of the Church, and the Persecuted Church is the strongest, and the most thriving church in the world that continuously grows stronger through persecution and martyrdom (1)
During the years of my spiritual growth, the continuation of my faith deepening, daily prayers, meditations and Rosaries, and my life-long journey with God, I have developed a special devotion where I regularly pray, supporting and advocate for the Persecuted Church (2).
After a prayer meeting at a local church, the Persecuted Church came up in a discussion, and, during that prayer meeting, I felt a fire ignite inside me (the same fire that was ignited leading to the collation and publication of the Everyday Miracles Book). Since then, I have prayed daily for the continued strength of the church, asked the Martyrs in Heaven for their intercession, supported various campaigns and advocated for the persecuted church through Open Doors (3)
The Persecuted Church is my spiritual devotion. A spiritual devotion is simply where, during your spiritual development and growth, you gravitate towards a particular issue, and dedicate more time, work and prayer for it. Other examples of devotionals include: Conversion of Sinners, The Rosary to End Abortion, the Souls in Purgatory, and Penance. (4, 5, 6, 7)
Work in my church includes running events such as the Card Signing event, and ‘I See You‘ Campaign. Additionally, I wrote to Karen Pierce, the UK’s permanent ambassador to the UN, to investigate the persecution and strengthen the UK’s response to helping our persecuted brothers and sisters.
As a Catholic who has experienced discrimination for my beliefs, all it has done is strengthen my faith, and enable me to love God more deeply. One of the beatitudes Jesus gave us makes a reference to the Persecuted Church; “Blessed are those who are persecuted for Righteousness Sake, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. Do not stop doing the right because of others” (8)
What is your spiritual devotion?
Much love and peace to you all ❤
(1) Church Times (2019) The Blood of the Martyrs; the Seed of the Church’ Available online at: https://www.churchtimes.co.uk/articles/2019/22-february/faith/faith-features/the-blood-of-the-martyrs-seed-of-the-church Accessed on 02/01/2020
(2) Open Doors (2020) ‘Serving Persecuted Christians’ Available online at: https://www.opendoorsuk.org Accessed on 02/01/2021
(3) Open Doors (2020) ‘About Us’ Available online at: https://www.opendoorsuk.org/about/ Accessed on 02/01/2021
(4) Catholic Online ‘Prayer for the Conversion of Sinners’ Available online at: https://www.catholic.org/prayers/prayer.php?p=1949 Accessed on 02/01/2021
(5) Holy Love Ministries (2021) ‘Our Lady Gives the World the Rosary of the Unborn to Conquer Abortion’ Available online at: Available online at: https://www.holylove.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Our-Lady-Gives-the-World-the-Rosary-of-the-Unborn-to-Conquer-Abortion-2nd-Edition.pdf Accesed on 02/01/2021
(6) The Prayer of Saint Gertrude (2021) ‘The Prayer of Saint Gertrude the Great for the Souls in Purgatory’ Available online at: https://www.praymorenovenas.com/prayer-st-gertrude-great-souls-purgatory Accessed on 02/01/2021
(7) Fatima Prayers: For Repentance (2020) ‘Our Catholic Prayers: The Fatima Prayers’ Available online at: https://www.ourcatholicprayers.com/fatima-prayers.html Accessed on 02/01/2021
(8) The Eight Beatitudes (2021) The 8 Beatitudes List’ Available online at: https://www.htae.net/checklist/the-eight-beatitudes/409/ Accessed on 02/01/2021
EWTN (2020) ‘Catholic Teachings, Marian Devotions and Aparitions’ Available online at: https://www.ewtn.com/catholicism/teachings/marian-devotions-and-apparitions-137 Accessed on 02/01/2021
CrossWalk (2020) ‘Devotionals to the Persecuted Church’ Available online at: https://www.crosswalk.com/devotionals/the-persecuted-church/ Accessed on 02/01/2021
Daily Christian Devotionals (2018) ‘A Blessing To Be Persecuted’ Available online at: https://www.dailycdev.com/2018/05/20/a-blessing-to-be-persecuted/ Accessed on 02/01/2021
Daily Christian Devotionals (List) ‘Devotionals List’ Available online at: https://www.dailycdev.com/devotionals-list/ Accessed on 07/01/2021
Gov.UK (2020) ‘Karen Pierce DGMG’ Available online at: https://www.gov.uk/government/people/karen-pierce Accessed on 09/01/2021
Every year, Christians around the world observe a ‘Week of Prayer for Christian Unity’, and is being held from 18th-25th January 2021 (1)
Globally, Christians come together to pray for each other, pray for peace and justice. In the wake of the pandemic, millions of people will be praying for those who have become ill, for those who have COVID-19, and for all the frontline staff who are saving lives.
Consider spending some time in prayer, even if it is for a few minutes a day; prayer will do so much more than what you could possibly imagine!
“When 2 or more are gathered in My Name, I am there” Matthew 18:20
Vatican News ‘Christians Invited to Join virtually in prayer for 54th Week of Prayer for Christian Unity‘ Available online at: https://www.vaticannews.va/en/church/news/2021-01/week-of-prayer-for-christian-unity-ecumenism-2021.html Accessed on 16/01/2021 (2021)
He is there.
He is omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent. (1)
He knows your every motive.
He knows your every intention.
He knows your every thought.
He knows when your last breath will be.
He knows the number of hairs on your head.
He knows your life plan.
He has a mission for you.
He knows what trials and challenges you will face in life.
He knows the cross you will carry.
He knows everything.
He wants a relationship with you.
Ask Him for help and guidance, and enter into the most fulfilling relationship with Him.
God knows everything.
Live for Him,
For you will face Him one day, when you stand before him (When I Stand Before God).
A Video I made some years back ‘ Spiritual Arts Video (7) Available online at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=coqfUllU4to Accessed on 02/01/2021
This blog post is a bit different from my usual posts, and I want to dedicate it to all those who are really struggling with COVID and the lockdown. These are my top tips for dealing with COVID:
- Write down 3-5 things everyday that you are grateful for. Expressing gratitude and looking at all the positives in life can help change your perspective on things. It will also remind you of the good things in life. You can also look back on what you have written and appreciate any progress you have made, what you have done and develop a sense of appreciation for even the little things in life.
- Do welfare checks on others. As previously blogged about in Showing a Little More Love, I have checked up on others during this time and reached out to people to show some extra love, kindness and support. I would encourage you all to do the same – the gratitude shown, and the kindness means so much to people. It reminds people that they matter, someone cares for them, and is looking out for them. You will also catch up with people whom you have not spoken to in years!
- Set yourself some new goals and targets. Setting yourself a new goal and pushing yourself to achieve it can be a big motivator, and will help you focus on achieving it.
- Exercise regularly. Exercise helps boost your physical and mental health, and is a great motivator and gets you ready for the day. Even going out for a short walk and getting some fresh air can be a massive pick up for your mental health.
- Immerse yourself in a hobby. Whether it’s arts and crafts, knitting, reading, playing games, writing, etc. by throwing yourself into a hobby can be it will help distract your mind from whatever is going on around you and create a sense of enjoyment.
- Learn something new. Online learning sites such as FutureLearn and the Brentwood Open Learning College (BOLC) are excellent sites to find new courses. By learning something new, you are expanding your mind, learning new things, and you can earn a new qualification at the end of it too!
- Make sure you have time for yourself. This is so important! By dedicating time for yourself, you can relax, unwind and spend quality time rejuvenating. This is a vital self-care tool that we all need to do in order to properly take care of ourselves.
- Listen to relaxing, meditation music. By listening to the soothing sound of meditation music, it can make you feel at ease and help you feel calmer. Here is a favorite meditation track that I love: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ZYbU82GVz4
- Pray regularly. I know that not all of my friends are Catholic and do not share similar beliefs to me, however, prayer helps to put peace in our hearts, gives us rest, and helps us to find quiet time dedicated to God. In my previous blog A Shift in My Soul, I talk about how prayer transforms us as people, nurtures our soul and helps us to be more content ❤ (What have you got to lose by praying and asking God for His intercession during this time?)
Much love to you all ❤
2020 has been an odd year.
It’s been a challenging and a tough year for many people. With the lock downs, COVID dominating the news, the impact it has had on mental health, job losses, and continuous uncertainty hanging in the air, 2020, is a year people will remember for being so unusual.
Over the past month, I have done welfare checks on friends and family members, even if I have not spoken to them in years. Dropping messages via messenger, WhatsApp and email, touching base and checking in on people goes a long way (and would strongly encourage you all to do something similar)
In the midst of all this uncertainty, let’s spread a little more love, show a little more kindness, and reach out to others ❤