St Gabriel Windows

St Gabriel Windows
Photocopy c. 2013 Jamie Laubacher

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Romans 12:12

Many years ago a young home school student we know was going to a bible study at the Hahn’s home in Steubenville, (our diocese).  This young lady needed a bible to take and asked if she could borrow mine;  I was using a hardbound Ignatius Bible, it was a favorite suggested one of Dr. Scott Hahn at the time.  I told our friend she could certainly borrow my bible under one condition, Mrs. Hahn, who was conducting the bible study, would need to sign it as proof that this was where the bible was really being taken :)  Well, at the end of 9 weeks or so, my bible was returned to me, and the young lady was very pleased to have me open up the front of the bible and read this inscription in cursive: 
“Rejoice in hope, persevere in tribulations, be constant in prayer” Rom 12:12      Yours in Christ, Kimberly Hahn
For me there could be no truer or wiser words even to this day. Whenever I open that bible I am reminded of that time in my life, a time when my children were very young and we had only been home educating for a few years….A time when I had a group of strong women to help encourage me and give me their support and share the joyful burden of home education; a time that is no longer here, no longer duplicated….only a sweet and enduring memory.  It is bittersweet… that many of those supports have withdrawn and left the parish we all shared, for different reasons.  Once that occurred, in the end only three home schooling families remained…..and we have remained ever since…not looking at leaving our home parish family as an option.  We are very traditional in our thinking of blooming where we are planted, knowing that God will always be present to us, deeply in our hearts and souls, and he will be no better or better attained in any other Catholic church.  The imperfections of the men conducting our Mass doesn’t make our Lord any less present or diminish the Almighty in any way. 
And so….a time of drought began for us…a time of yearning for more encouragement and support, more families for we mothers to share our journey with, and more children being schooled in the same manner.  It was a long prayer….we were patient and accepting. During that time we stored up many spiritual benefits that could not have come to us in the hey-day times; we raised our children up, continuing strongly without power in numbers…but humbly and steadily with the help of God and Our Lady.  And in the end, we graduated our older ones into college and we continue on with our younger ones.  All in God’s time, and all for God’s purpose do our lives unfold…..
Now, we are rejoicing, as three other home schooling families are in our midst and we are getting to know them and support them.  I believe so deeply and so much in having the support and care of other home educating mothers.  I believe that we need to be generous with our experience and generous in sharing it with others.  Others need us.  And we need their newness and spirit. We are clearly veterans now having been through the desert and found ourselves in the comfort and content of the land of milk and honey…..We are ready to give support and feel blessed to be able to do so.  So where there were the remaining three, now there are six…..and maybe with the grace of God’s goodness we will once again grow further, newer, different and needed.
Today is a beautiful day to rejoice as we home schooling mothers met and got to know one another a little better, with our children nearby meeting one another.  We are able to know silently that we are on the same journey when we see one another at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.  We are able to understand one another and the goals we have for our families.  And we share the common bond of love of God and family and the one true Church on earth.   Once again, God is good.
As I pray for a new name for our newly formed group, as we are truly putting aside the old wineskins and putting on the new, I ask that you pray for us as well.  And may God bless you in your generous heart of prayer.  God has proven His words do not fail, ever.  Romans 12:12


Megan@TrueDaughter said...

This is lovely, Denise. You are a great encouragement to me, as is Vicki, and without the two of you, I may have thrown in the towel on homeschooling in whatever form, numerous times. It's hard...but not as hard as sending them away every day. So thank you for always encouraging me to keep plugging away. And for you and Vicki staging your "mini interventions" when I needed them!

Home School Mom: Denise said...

Oh Megan, you are so welcome. We have all really hung in there for eachother together. I don't know how I would have made out had it not been for yours and Vicki's support there are church. Just to see you every Sunday and be able to chat and vent and know that we share so much in common with education and child rearing really has helped so much all these past years! I love those mini interventions! lol! You are so worth the supporting!.. Thank YOU ...looking forward to sharing some "mom" moments with the other ladies!