Faith in Action Blog

Faith in Action Blog

Derek Remus ('11)“Certainly coming to the College has helped me in my vocation discernment,” remarked Derek Remus at the time of his graduation in 2011. “Studying St. Thomas, philosophy, and theology has increased my love of the intellectual life and has made me think more about a kind of teaching and preaching vocation in the priesthood.” After graduation, his plan was to spend some time retiring student debt and further discerning his vocation.

On Monday, just two year since his graduation, Mr. Remus will be taking the next step in answering God’s call. “I will be entering St. Joseph’s Seminary in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, as a seminarian for the Diocese of Calgary,” he writes.

Thanks be to God! Please join us in praying for Mr. Remus, his new life as a seminarian, and his continued discernment.


Rosie Grimm ('10)The latest news from her sister Wendy-Irene Grimm (’99):

We have hard news about Rosie. After going to the hospital, Rosie had several MRIs, which indicate that the tumor has grown aggressively throughout her body in the last few months. As I understand it, it is up and down her spine, and I believe in other places as well. Because of this the doctor thinks it highly unlikely that chemotherapy will be effective, and Rosie (and all of us) should prepare ourselves for the worst. The first doctor has estimated that Rosie may die in as little as two weeks.

Since we heard the news all my siblings have been returning home, and I hope we will soon all be together. Rosie will hopefully be coming home today and a nurse will be caring for her in our house rather than a hospital. She’s also continuing some treatment in the hope that things may be more positive than they seem. Rosie has been incredibly strong these last two years, and even now, when she is in almost constant pain, she’s still thinking about others. Please offer up your prayers for her that whatever the outcome she will not suffer and be able to remain as comfortable as possible in the next few weeks. My brother Bill and sister-in-law Margaret are expecting their baby (Rosie’s godson) at the end of the month, and I know Rosie deeply wants to see him. Thank you all so much for your prayers and please continue with them! I have no doubt that a huge source of Rosie’s strength has arisen from the constant prayer of so many friends and family members. God Bless You.

Friends across the country prayed a Chaplet of Divine Mercy for Rosie on Sunday at 3 p.m., the Hour of Mercy. Her family asks that we continue to pray this devotion, particularly during the 3 p.m. hour:

Our Lord told St. Faustina that “At the hour of their death, I defend as My own glory every soul that will say this chaplet; or when others say it for a dying person, the indulgence is the same” (Diary, 811).

Eternal God, in whom mercy is endless, and the treasury of compassion inexhaustible, look kindly upon us and increase your mercy in us, that in difficult moments we might not despair nor grow despondent, but with great confidence submit ourselves to your holy will, which is love and mercy itself. Amen.

Our Father
Hail Mary
Apostles’ Creed

On the big beads of a Rosary:

Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and for those of the whole world.

On the small beads:
For the sake of His sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

At the end:
Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.


… about another alumna sister!

Sr. Anne Therese of the Child Jesus (’02)

Sarah Kaiser (’02) made her first profession of vows in the Carmel of Our Mother of Mercy and St. Joseph, Alexandria, S.D., on July 26, the feast of Sts. Joachim and Anne. Her name in religion is Sr. Anne Therese of the Child Jesus.

Sr. Anne Therese of the Child Jesus (’02)

Sr. Anne Therese requests prayers for perseverance in her vocation and promises to return the favor.

 


Rosie Grimm ('10)The latest news from Rosie Grimm (’10): “My cancer is growing, and I can tell it’s interfering with the use of my left arm,” she writes. As a result, she has had to leave her clinical trial, and is starting a new chemotherapy treatment. She was also hospitalized today due to severe pain, and she has insurance issues that need to be resolved. “Please pray about that and for me to have the energy to do the things I should do. At the moment I’m pretty wiped out.”

Her sister Wendy-Irene Zepeda (’99) writes:

“We’ll be praying specially for her in the Rosary Novena [from the Feast of the Assumption to the Feast of the Holy Rosary on October 7]. If you can join in, even with just a decade or an Our Father and Hail Mary, that would great. (And we’ll be praying with you for your intentions, as well. Many, many thanks for your prayers. I don’t know what we’d do without them.”

Please join us in prayer!


August 09,
2013

Sr. Juan Jose (Elisabeth Sedler '11)Less than a year after entering the postulancy for the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist, Elisabeth Sedler (’09) formally entered the novitiate on August 1, 2013. Along with 15 other women, Miss Sedler — now Sr. Juan Jose — received the Dominican habit at the  community’s motherhouse in Ann Arbor, Mich. She takes her religious name from St. Juan Diego and Jose Luis Sanchez del Rio, a 14-year-old Christero martyr. Sr. Juan Jose is the fourth alumna of the College to join the Sisters of Mary, whose superior general, Mother Mary Assumpta Long, O.P., was the College’s 2012 Commencement Speaker.

Deo Gratias!

 


Rosie Grimm ('10)From Rosie’s mother, Rose Grimm (’76):

“We have just had some less than good news — Rosie’s latest scans show that the tumors in her lungs have grown slightly (although not spread anywhere else). She is not experiencing any symptoms from this, but it means that she may not be able to stay on her present clinical trial. She will be still in the trial for the next six weeks, and if there is no change for the better, we will move on to some other form of treatment.

“Could you please be praying for some good and speedy change for the better? This clinical trial has previously had some very good effects for Rosie.

Thanks so much.
Rose

Meanwhile, one of Rosie’s sisters, Wendy-Irene Zepeda (’99) has requested that friends say the following prayer to Our Lady of Lovely Surprises for Rosie:

Dear Mother Mary, God gave you the loveliest of surprises, Himself coming as man for our salvation; and through you He gave this surprise to the world. At Cana, you showed us how you love to imitate God by giving us lovely surprises through your intercession. Mother, we long for lovely surprises, especially in this matter...; please send us those which please you. Give us every helpful sweetness to draw us to Your Son. Amen.

Please keep praying. Thank you!


In December, the family of Loraine (Ivers ‘81) Hoonhout invited friends to join them in praying to Servant of God Frank Duff (founder of the Legion of Mary) for healing in Mrs. Hoonhount’s struggle with cancer. By God’s grace, those many prayers have borne good fruit! Mrs. Hoonhout writes:

“Great news. My UCLA hematologist/oncologist said that my cancer is stable, and the blood work looks good. I’m tolerating the oral chemo regimen and monthly shots regimen well. This comes after extensive testing and reversing his Feb/March 2013 prognosis of possibly a year or two. Also, I was able to dodge back surgery in December due to robotic exterior radiation.

“Thank you all from the bottom of my heart. Your letters, calls, prayers, Masses, sacrifices, gifts, and outpouring of tremendous love has made this journey so much more easy. Your gift of love has drawn me closer to the Tremendous Lover, Healer, and our ultimate source of all happiness, beauty, goodness, truth and peace.”

With grateful affection,
Loraine

Thanks be to God!

 


Dr. Adam Seagrave ('05)A professor of political science at Northern Illinois University, Dr. S. Adam Seagrave (’05) has published an article in The Public Discourse, arguing that Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species fails the “eye test.” That is, he says, elements of the theory of evolution contradict what we can perceive with our own eyes. Dr. Seagrave writes:

“Darwin is clearly aware — and bothered by the fact — that his theory of evolution through natural selection is not only unsupported by, but actually contradicts, the reports given to us through our senses, as well as the ‘common sense’ we gain from these reports over time. So he argues, in response, that this common sense is founded on mere ‘imagination’ rather than ‘reason,’ and with a Kantian determination he asks that we repress our ‘empirical’ impressions in favor of our abstract theoretical convictions.

“Yet why, we can ask, should we trust Darwin’s theory more than our own eyes? As persuasively as this theory explains many phenomena of nature and archeological discoveries, is its acceptance worth having to admit that the world is actually nothing like our experience of it? If a theory that the earth rests on the shell of a giant sea turtle explained enough phenomena, would it similarly command our assent?”

That article, perhaps not surprisingly, generated some controversy, leading Dr. Seagrave to issue a follow-up:

“The sort of ‘eye test’ I have in mind, and which I believe poses an underappreciated challenge to Darwinian evolutionary theory, involves much more than simply ‘looking’ or physically seeing; it is, rather, precisely what Aristotle describes as ‘the originative source of scientific knowledge’ in his Posterior Analytics. According to Aristotle, all scientific knowledge must build upon previous knowledge, leading to the problem of knowledge’s ultimate origin. This origin lies, according to Aristotle, in a process of induction or intuition whereby sense impressions become memories, and memories become ‘experience.’

“This experience is defined by abstraction — we human beings experience the world in terms of stable and defined universal concepts, and these concepts in turn form the building blocks of all subsequent knowledge. Our experience in this special Aristotelian sense, for example, tells us that elephants are different in kind from human beings, and not in degree, however large this degree may be. Our experience, on its own and apart from whatever scientific education we may possess, tells us that human beings are separated from elephants by rationality — not by millions of years of differential development.”

Greg Pfundstein ('05)Meanwhile, one of Dr. Seagrave’s classmates, Greg Pfundstein (’05), has also published a story in The Public Discourse, based on a recent comment from kidnapping victim Elizabeth Smart. Miss Smart remarked that, when she was sexually abused, she thought her life had “no value” — because one of her teachers had once compared those who were no longer virgins to a “chewed-up piece of gum.” That recollection quickly inspired a rash of denunciations of school-based abstinence programs from a wide range of critics, including some Christian conservatives, who argued that such programs present a warped, even dehumanizing, image of sexuality.

Not so fast, says Mr. Pfundstein. A board member of the National Abstinence Education Association (as well as the president of the Chiaroscuro Foundation), Mr. Pfundstein has co-authored an article for The Public Discourse, in which he argues that the sort of messages that Miss Smart received are not representative of most Sexual Risk Avoidance (SRA) programs:

“While no one can vouch for every abstinence program that has been used by well-intentioned presenters over the last two decades, we can confidently say that the sort of demeaning messages received by Smart and others are outside the mainstream of state-of-the-art abstinence-education programs.

“Perhaps most relevant to the current controversy is the fact that the SRA approach is the only one that believes in ‘another chance’ for any individual who has made unhealthy decisions in the past. Far from being ‘used up,’ teens are given renewed hope for starting over. ‘Renewed abstinence’ is an articulated goal of SRA programs, and there is some evidence that it is easier to get young people to choose renewed abstinence than to get them to use condoms.”

Archives of past work by Mr. Pfundstein and Dr. Seagrave are available at the website of The Public Discourse, which is published by the Witherspoon Institute.


Fr. Drogin and Bishop Vann

On Saturday, Rev. Nathaniel Drogin, O. Praem. (’01), received the Sacrament of Holy Orders at Mission Basilica in San Juan Capistrano, Calif. Fr. Drogin is the College’s 59th alumni priest, and the fifth at St. Michael’s Abbey in Orange, Calif., where four other alumni are currently seminarians or novices. Ordaining Fr. Drogin was the Bishop of Orange, the Most Rev. Kevin Vann, J.D., D.D., who will serve as the speaker at the College’s Convocation exercises on August 26. Numerous members of the Thomas Aquinas College community were on hand for the joyous occasion, including President Michael F. McLean and his wife, Lynda.

God be praised!


Wonderful news from the mother of Maria Forshaw (’07):

Sr. Maria Battista of the Lamb of God (’07)Maria Forshaw (’07) was clothed with the habit of a Discalced Carmelite novice at a ceremony on June 8 at the Carmel of St. Joseph in St. Louis County, Missouri. Having spent a year as a postulant, she took the name of Sr. Maria Battista of the Lamb of God. Her college classmates will not be surprised to hear that she is deeply involved in music-making for the convent, as a singer and an organist. Before entering the cloister, Maria spent several years working as a tutor of school-age children and as a singer.

Deo gratias!