Saturday, November 8, 2008

Membership Information

Beginning next year, we will be grouping our meetings into three sessions. The Fall session will be January through May, with approximately ten meetings. The Summer session will be June and July. These meetings will be informal play dates held at parks and member’s homes and lunch dates at various kid-friendly locations. There will be no formal meetings during this time. The Spring session will be August through December, also, with approximately ten meetings.

Dues in the amount of $15 will be collected at the beginning of the Fall and Spring sessions. There will not be dues for the Summer session. Childcare payments of $1 per child per meeting will continue to be collected. We hope that you will find these prices reasonable as we try to cover the costs of running this most-needed ministry.

We will also be holding fundraisers, one in the Fall and one in the Spring, to cover the remainder of our costs. We greatly appreciate any help you can offer in our fundraising efforts. Thank you and God bless!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Buy a gift, help a family across the world!

Everything about my consumer views changed when I was introduced to serrv international back when I worked for St. Mary's and we sponsored the Work of Human Hands Christmas sale every year. Serrv international is a nonprofit organization dedicated to eradicating poverty wherever it resides. They work in cooperation with Catholic Relief Services and other Christian non profit organizations.

By purchasing these lovely, handmade gifts from these talented artisans, we are able to bring hope to families all across the world by providing them the opportunity to have sustainable work to support themselves and break the cycle of poverty!!!! How is THAT for making a difference that matters????

There are nativity sets, handmade linens for the house, bags, woven baskets, kitchenware, handmade soaps and candles, jewelry, toys and fair trade chocolate, tea and coffee. You can browse their online catalog, or visit St. Mary's for the sale this year (I'll find out when it's happening and post soon!) You can find a TON of information on their site - meet the artisans, request a catalog, find out how to sponsor a sale...and much more!

Here is a description from their website:

Your purchases give you the chance to have a direct impact on our global market’s great injustices: the inequality in income and quality of life for people living in developing countries. With your help, SERRV becomes a powerful tool for putting right the imbalance in the world.

Our work encompasses more than just buying and selling.
We offer prepayments so our partners can sustain their business.
Create new designs so they can build their markets.
Teach new skills so they can develop their craft.
Provide grants so they can expand their resources.

We support equal rights for women.
Guide sustainable development.
And of course, pay a fair wage.

For 60 years, we have worked on behalf of the world’s Artisans and Farmers. One of the first alternative trade organizations in the world, SERRV is a founding member of the International Fair Trade Association (IFAT) and a member of the Fair Trade Federation (FTF).

SERRV with us and craft an experience that will reward every person it touches, and build a sustainable style of life that’ll be enriching for us all.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Book Review: Full of Grace by Johnette Benkovic

This is an excellent read. Here is a snippet from Chapter 3: Praise and Petition, Thanksgiving and Contrition: Symphony of the Abundant Life.

Our times of prayer and encounters with God are meant to be transforming moments in our lives. Their purpose is to produce within us sanctifying grace and the ability to lead a virtuous life. When we cooperate with the grace we receive in prayer, not only do we become transformed into the image and likeness of God, but our very presence becomes a conduit through which the love of God flows into the world.

If we are to experience the authenticity of our femininity, living out God's call for us to "aid humanity in not falling," we must commit ourselves to a regular time of prayer and develop an attitude of prayer throughout the day. Prayer must become the "song of our heart."

But how can we be in a constant state of prayer and still be busy about the duties of everyday life? St. Paul suggest the answer. He tells us, "Be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with all your heart, always and for everything giving thanks in
the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God the Father" (Eph

This passage hints as to how we can make each day of our lives a symphony of prayer, a melody of love, which rises from the depths of our being to the throne of the Father in praise and worship of Him. As is the case with most symphonies, our symphony of prayer is orchestrated around four movements or dispositions of the heart.

Read on to learn about the four "movements of prayer": Adoration, Contrition, Thanksgiving, and Supplication (ACTS).

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Joyful Hearts Blog!

Thank you for visiting the Joyful Hearts blog. We are glad you are here!

Welcome to our blog! The Joyful Hearts are a Catholic Mother's prayer and study group of Bryan/College Station, Tx who meets bimonthly at St. Thomas Aquinas Parish of College Station. Babysitters care for our children across the hall while we meet, lap babies are welcome in the meetings.

We meet on first and third Mondays at the St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church in College Station.