Category Archives: EnCourage

“I am not the Messiah”

Many of us pick up the Little Blue Book for Advent, and of course the Little Black Book for the Lenten season. These pocket-sized books of reflection are invaluable in their simplicity and wisdom.

For January 2 2015, the entry is this:

And this is the testimony of John. When the Jews from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to him to ask him, “Who are you?” he admitted and did not deny it, but admitted, “I am not the Messiah.” (Jn 1:19-28)

We have here the very first words spoken by John the Baptist in this Gospel. And what were those first words? “I am not the Messiah.”

Want to experience a great weight lifted off your shoulders? Say those same words right now. “I am not the Messiah.” Say it out loud. Hear yourself say it.

Now, you already knew that. But there’s something about saying it. Then add: “World, I have good news for you. Although I am not the Messiah, the good news is that there is a Messiah, and I’d be glad to point him out to you.” (That’s in effect what John said a few verses later.)

I know I’m not the Messiah, but I can unwittingly try to be one. We all do it, usually with the best motives. Parents try to solve all their children’s problems…

Indeed, I do have a part to play in God’s plan. But it’s just that – a part to play. I am not the Messiah. Jesus is. He’s got the whole world in his hands.

Sometimes prayer is just meant to remind me that the Messiah is Jesus. Not me.

What relief!

That says it quite eloquently, but I am tempted to elaborate. I will just say that there is a tendency, especially on the part of men, to fix things. And so for parents, and especially fathers, their need to fix their children’s situations, whatever they may be, can feel irresistible and overwhelming. But, since “I am not the Messiah,” perhaps I can surrender my children, and all their situations, to Him Who Is. Feel the relief.

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Filed under EnCourage, Fathers, Free will, Mothers, Parenthood

Paul is interviewed on Family Sanctuary

Paul Darrow, one of the three of us profiled in the film Desire of the Everlasting Hills, is interviewed by Mary Ann Jepsen for her radio program Family Sanctuary. The interview covers two hours of the show, aired on December 1 and December 8, and they are now available online, just click on the dates.

If you haven’t watched the movie yet, I ask you to watch it. It is very helpful to understand the lengths our Lord goes to, to bring us back to his fold. It is a story of redemption, applicable to all of us, not just those who experience same-sex attraction.

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Filed under Courage, EnCourage, Lived Experience

Courage Conference, more video available

Air Maria has posted more of the Courage Conference videos, here. They are available to download as videos or audio-only mp3’s , just in case you want to download them and listen in the car! Every one of these is worth watching. Please take the time, especially if you couldn’t make it to the Courage/EnCourage Conference.

In addition to Bishop Daniel Thomas’ talk “Coraggio!,” the following videos have been posted. For those I don’t expound on here, look for summaries in future postings:

Fr. Paul Check, For When I am Weak, Then I am Strong.

The video leads off with the first ten minutes introducing episode one of the five-part Courage series that is being produced for EWTN. Then Fr. Check talks about the media projects: The five-part EWTN series, the book to be published Continue reading

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Filed under Courage, EnCourage, Homily

Feast Day of St. Monica

Today, August 27, is the feast day of St. Monica, the mother of St. Augustine, and the patron saint of mothers, married women, alcoholics and this website!

St. Monica prayed for Augustine’s conversion for his whole adult life, and died shortly after his baptism in 387 A.D.

This gives me another opportunity to recommend this very helpful book, St. Monica and the Power of Persistent Prayer, by Mike Aquilina and Mark W. Sullivan. I recommend this book to all parents who have kids. Period. It doesn’t matter if they experience same-sex attraction. It is full of wisdom, meditations, prayer and resolutions, in a particularly readable format.

Here is a resolution from the book that you may find particularly helpful:


I will provide my child with one of the finest things in life: A truly Christian parent. For the sake of my child’s conversion, I will seek my own conversion, without delay.

You can find more information on St. Monica at the site American Catholic, and at New Advent, in the Catholic Encyclopedia.

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Filed under EnCourage, Mothers, Parenthood, Prayer

The Courage of the Principled Parent

I have just started the book Making Gay Okay: How Rationalizing Homosexual Behavior is Changing Everything, by Robert Reilly. I’m only in Chapter 1, The Culture War, so it’s too early in the book to do a full “review” of it. But there are a couple of sentences that remind me how courageous you EnCourage parents are. Reilly is speaking here about the trend to define homosexuality in terms of rights.

Former vice president Dick Cheney’s public endorsement of same-sex “marriage” on behalf of his lesbian daughter is typical. He said: “I think that freedom means freedom for everyone….I think people ought to be free to enter into any kind of union they wish…”

Those of us who know that homosexual “marriage” can’t by its very nature exist, and therefore ought not be codified into law, are often called haters and bigots. A label which is unfair, I always thought. But when I reflect on the turnaround that Dick Cheney, along with a Continue reading


Filed under EnCourage, Parenthood

Why Monica’s Cross?


Jesus says, “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” (Luke 9:23 ) This life on earth is not all there is, and so it comes with suffering and trials. And it is a most fundamental teaching of the Catholic faith that we all have our crosses to bear. We can bear them willingly and with grace, or we can drag them along, fighting and complaining.

So, why the title Monica’s Cross? This site has been created to serve parents, families and friends of people who experience same sex attraction. It is under the protection of St. Monica, who is well known for her persistence in prayer for the conversion of her son Augustine of Hippo. She prayed and prayed, for more than 17 years, for his conversion to the Catholic faith. Eventually, he converted, and by the end of his life, he died a Bishop. So, St. Monica is the patron saint of mothers, and uniquely suited to aid all of those whose children are struggling with difficult issues.

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June 16, 2014 · 3:10 am