Joy Battista

"Joy Battista" stands for the Joy of John the Baptist at the presence of Christ.

"And how have I deserved that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For behold, the moment that the sound of thy greeting came to my ears, the babe in my womb leapt for joy." Luke 1:43-44

This blog is dedicated to all who seek the Joy of Christ's presence in their own lives.
This blog is also dedicated to the unborn, for John the Baptist was an unborn when he leapt for joy at the presence of Jesus who was also unborn at the time.


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter

It has been a beautiful Easter. I am writing this with only a few minutes available. It has been a joyfully busy day celebrating our Lord's Resurrection. I hope to have time this week to post a few pictures of our day. Until then I want to tell all you family and friends, Happy Easter!!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Let Peace Begin with Us, 10 Practical Tips

I was listening to Father Gene Jakubek on KVSS 102.7 Spirit Catholic Radio this morning and he gave 10 practical tips to gaining peace. As you know, if you've read my blog, I have been writing about peace a fair amount. Well, Father Jakubek gave me a gift that I am now passing onto you about the very subject. God rest Father Jakubek's soul!

Here are his 10 tips for peace:

1. Don't compare yourself with others, it causes depression. Use the talents God gave you.

2. Don't carry grudges. Just because you weren't invited someplace, or you feel slighted don't brood. Forgive and move on.

3. Don't live in the past. Don't worry about what you did. Jesus forgives and forgets.

4. Keep in circulation. Take initiative. Say hello first, be the one to call someone. Do things, move and walk (exercise).

5. Do something good each day for someone else. It will make you feel good. We need one another.

6. Don't let little things bug you. Don't let things trip you up that are really just miner nuisances.

7. Make the most of what you have, where you are and with the time you have.

8. Laugh more, get the oxygen into yourself, exercise your organs through laughter.

9. Make up your mind to be at peace.

10. Pray in gratitude for what you have.

I think I can do these things, how about you?
God Bless and Peace Be with You.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Why I Gave Up Pants

A neighbor, whom I don’t know, reminded me yesterday of why I gave up pants for lent.

It was a sad way to be reminded of what kind of a mother I want to always be!!
I haven’t shared with very many people, other than my family, that I gave up pants for lent. I decided I would only wear skirts or dresses for forty days. My real intention was to try and change my disposition, not my dress. My biggest challenge in life is to ALWAYS be a kind, gentle, loving and caring person towards my family and I thought that maybe if I would look more feminine I would act more feminine. This major wardrobe change has turned out to be an effective reminder every day, all day, of who I am and how I’m suppose to be.

I have blogged before about the fact that I can be quite the yeller to my kids. Usually I find myself yelling when I’m either in a big hurry and I have a slowpoke or two, or when I ask someone to do something or not to do something and they attempt to refuse. If something gets lost I may yell as the frustration mounts if we can't find it right away. These problems and behaviors can sure raise the pitch and volume of my voice. There are times that I find yelling is necessary and don‘t feel guilty for it. For instance when Daniel starts running towards the street I’ll panic and yell at him to stop.

But yesterday I was reminded in a hair raising way, why I gave up my pants for lent. I don’t want to be a mom like the one I heard yelling from a house that is diagonally across the street from mine. It was in the middle of the afternoon and her child, dressed in pink footy pj‘s who looks about two, had apparently escaped her ground floor apartment to the top of a set of stairs. To get the child back down the steps the mother screamed in a deep roaring voice, “COME DOWN HERE RIGHT NOW AND WE NEED TO BLOW YOUR F_ _ _ ING NOSE! I just shuddered. The child didn’t say a word and complied and headed back down the steps. I thought to myself that poor child is too used to THAT word. I hate that word!

If and when I do yell I keep my language clean most of the time. Very rarely do I swear but when I do it comes in waves where I have a couple bad weeks here and their when four letter words can slip out of my mouth in a fit of anger. I can’t think that I ever say that dreaded “F” word but I may substitute something very close. When these times happen I realize I’ve grown apart from God and I need to turn back to him and ask for forgiveness. I do this by going to confession and I always am reconciled back to Him and become a nicer person again.

This lent is teaching me that to be truly feminine I must cling to God and then I won’t need to wear skirts and dresses to be what he made me to be. But until Easter I’ll gladly suffer through, as He did for me. And I’ll unite my suffering to His and pray that my new neighbor can grow close to Him in order to respect and treat herself and her child with gentleness, kindness and love. And I’ll pray in thanksgiving for there by the grace of God go I.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

The Task for a Christian

Look around my blog. Scroll up and down, I've been adding new features to it. I've added some things that I think are important, deep, beautiful and that I just have got to share! Click on to anything that looks interesting to you from the labels to the archives to the most popular posts.

A new feature I have added is a quote from St. Josemaria Escriva that I have made as a permanent sideview on the blog and this is the quote:

"The task for a Christian is to drown evil in an abundance of good. It is not a question of negative campaigns, or of being anti anything. On the contrary, we should live positively, full of optimism, with youthfulness, joy and peace. We should be understanding with everybody, with the followers of Christ with those who abandon him, or do not know him at all. But understanding does not mean holding back, or remaining indifferent, but being active." St. Josemaria Escriva, The Furrow, op. cit., n. 864

I had read this from my "You Can Become a Saint" book by Mary Ann Budnik. I also had the privilege of discussing it with other women in my study based on the same book earlier this week. It struck a chord with all of us and we all agreed that it was powerful.

I feel it is a great quote to contemplate and live as we seem to be living in times of such religious, social, cultural, economic and political divisions. It is time we seriously work to unite for a more peaceful world. Let's do this by drowning out evil in an abundance of good. We can all do acts of kindness and good. Peace to You All!

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Holy Face of Jesus

The Holy Face of Jesus
(After the Holy Shroud of Turnin)

A number of years ago while at a holy hour of adoration a woman I didn't know came up to me and handed me a holy card with this picture on it. Some may think this is strange and some may understand but I melted with love as I gazed on the image. At another holy hour I came across the following and hand wrote it all out because it was so touching to me and I have printed it for you here.

Adored Be The Holy Face of Jesus

O Lord, show us Thy Face, and we shall be saved!
"By offering My Face to My Eternal Father, nothing will be refused, and the conversion of many sinners will he obtained." – Our Lord To Sr. Mary of St. Peter – November 1846

To Sr. Mary of St. Peter Discalced Carmelite Nun,
in favor of those who honor His Holy Face.
1. "By My Holy Face you shall work miracles."
2. "By My Face you will obtain the conversion of many sinners."
3. "Nothing that you ask in making this offering will be refused to you."
4 "If you knew how pleasing the sight of My Face is to My Father."
5. "As in a kingdom you can procure all you wish for with a coin marked with the King’s effigy, so in the Kingdom of Heaven you will obtain all you desire with the precious coin of My Holy Face."
6. "Our Lord has promised me that He will imprint His divine likeness on the souls of those who honor His most holy Countenance."
7. "All those who honor My Holy Face in a spirit of reparation will, by so doing, perform the office of the pious Veronica."
8. "According to the care you take in making reparation to My Face, disfigured by blasphemies, so will I take care of yours, which has been disfigured by sin. I will reprint therein My image and render it as beautiful as it was on leaving the Baptismal font."
9. "Our Lord promised me that all those who defend His cause in this work of reparation, by words, by prayers, or in writing, He will defend them before His Father; at their death He will purify their souls by effacing all the blots of sin and will restore to them their primitive beauty."

An Act of Praise and Reparation

Dictated by Our Lord to Sr. Mary of St. Peter

MAY the most holy, most sacred, most adorable, most incomprehensible and ineffable Name of God be forever praised, blessed, loved, adored and glorified, in Heaven, on earth, and under the earth, by all the creatures of God, and by the Sacred Heart of Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar.


O LORD Jesus Christ, in presenting ourselves before Thine adorable Face to ask of Thee the graces of which we stand most in need, we beseech Thee, above all, to grant us that interior disposition of never refusing at any time to do what Thou requirest of us by Thy holy commandments and divine inspirations. Amen.

O GOOD Jesus, who hast said, "Ask and you shall receive, seek and you shall find, knock and it shall be opened to you," grant us, O Lord, that faith which obtains all, or supply in us what may be deficient; grant us, by the pure effect of Thy charity, and for Thine eternal glory, the graces which we need and which we look for from Thine infinite mercy.

BE MERCIFUL to us, O my God, and reject not our prayers, when amid our afflictions, we call upon Thy Holy Name and seek with love and confidence Thine adorable Face. Amen.

O ALMIGHTY and Eternal God, look upon the Face of Thy Son Jesus. We present It to Thee with confidence, to implore Thy pardon. The All-Merciful Advocate opens His mouth to plead our cause; hearken to His cries, behold His tears, O God, and through his infinite merits hearken to Him when He intercedes for us poor miserable sinners. Amen.

ADORABLE Face of my Jesus, my only love, my light and my life, grant that I may know, love and serve Thee alone, that I may live with Thee, of Thee, by Thee and for Thee. Amen.

ETERNAL Father, I offer Thee the adorable Face of Thy Beloved Son for the honor and glory of Thy Name, for the conversion of sinners and for the salvation of the dying.

O DIVINE Jesus, through Thy face and Name, save us. Our hope is in the virtue of Thy Holy Name!

I hope this gives you a wonderful lenten reflection and I hope you are having a blessed lent. Jackie

Friday, April 1, 2011

A Holy Thursday, April 1, 1999, to Remember

April 1, 2011, was exactly twelve years after the day Michaela was first diagnosed with her leukemia. My memories of that day are as vivid as ever and I'd like to share with you what it was like and my reaction to it.

I took 4 year old Michaela to daycare that morning and told the provider I made a doctor's appointment for her because I found purple spots in her mouth and that I'd be back in the middle of the afternoon to pick her up and take her. I took her to the doctor about a week and a half prior to this because her nose had been constantly stuffed up, her eyes were dark and puffed up and her skin pale. She had also been running low grade temperatures for the past couple weeks. The Doctor diagnosed her with allergies and also started Michaela on an antibiotic for good measure. We tried the allergy medications and antibiotics but she was not getting better by the time the purple spots developed. The amazing thing was that she had not been sick enough to miss pre-school or daycare. But when the purple spots showed up in the mouth I knew things weren't right. She also began having a yellowish tone to her skin.

I called Holy Family Medical Specialties the day before and insisted that I get in to see our doctor the next day. The receptionist tried to hold me off until the following week because the medical practice was closing early for Holy Thursday, which was April 1rst of that year, and would not reopen until the following Monday after Easter. But I insisted and Michaela's appointment ended up being the final appointment of the day that Holy April Fool's Thursday.

It was a bright and sunny spring day and while at my part time job I had been working on a project that was completely organized in my office for which I showed a co-worker exactly what I was doing and what still needed to be done. It was kind of a strange thing looking back because I was completely planning to come right back to finish the project on my own. But I think the Holy Spirit or an Angel or something gave me the inspiration to go through my project in great detail with a co-worker, just in case...

I left my office, thinking I would be back in a little while, and went and picked up Michaela and took her to the doctor. When the doctor walked into our room I described everything that had been going on with her, this was a different doctor than the one who had previously diagnosed allergies, and he listened and decided to do one thing...order a CBC (complete blood count.) Michaela was very cooperative with the lab tech when she came in to draw the blood and it all went very smoothly, she was a gem of a patient...a precursor of how she would be in the future.

About 10-15 minutes later, Dr. Black, returned with a clear diagnosis from that one blood test....leukemia. A surreal feeling was my first reaction, I really didn't panic, I was just trying to make sense of it and I immediately thought this is cancer we are dealing with but I knew leukemia in children was curable. I remarked to the doctor right away that one time when I was a child some doctors thought I had leukemia but after a bone marrow test they found out I didn't. It was kind of a numb shock type of feeling I experienced and I knew that Michaela would be getting the same test that I once had. I then just felt sad at what Michaela was about to go through. I didn't at all doubt the results of the blood test though, I knew in my heart Michaela indeed had leukemia.

I then started receiving instructions on what to do next. Michaela was whisked away to the receptionist's desk to be entertained so that I could get these instructions and directions and then to make some phone calls. The most important phone call I had to make was to call my husband and give him the news. The trouble of it was that I could not for the life of me reach him. Cell phones were not common place then like they are now. Will was out of his regular office in a training session. The people I contacted at his work couldn't even get a hold of him for me. So I was left to temporarily deal with this situation on my own. When I called my work to inform them of the news it finally sunk in because I could hardly speak through my tears that Michaela had just been diagnosed with leukemia.

After receiving the instructions that I needed to go home and pack bags for a trip to the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, NE, which is an hour away, I scooped Michaela up and headed home to pack. I pulled up to the curb in front of our house and just could not take Michaela in without my husband there. I realized I had to take care of something a hundred times more important than anything else. I had to get Michaela to a priest to get her blessed and to have a prayer chain started on her behalf.

We arrived at the rectory and went in, thankfully Monsigor Nemec was there. We first encountered the Parish secretary who is connected to our family because her daughter is married to my brother. After I told her, I saw the tears well up in her eyes and I realized, wow, this is no small matter.

We were escorted into Monsignor Nemec's office and we told him about the diagnosis and he went to his book shelf and pulled out a prayer book and began praying over Michaela. I think this was the most profound thing, as I look at in now, that I did for Michaela to heal her of her leukemia and to heal me of a lack of faith. And it was the beginning of a whole new phase of my life. Previous to this, my wedding day, my mother's death and the birth of Michaela, were life changing events....but this has truly been a profoundly different type of life changing event. It has become a testimony to my Faith.

My testimony for this post is that I believe God wants me to spread the message of the beauty of the priesthood. It was a priest that began powerful prayers for my daughter on such a profound feast day in the Church...Holy Thursday. I will always remember this day when I think of Michaela's first diagnosis and when I say the rosary and come to the mystery of the Institution of the Holy Eucharist and the Institution of the Priesthood. This was the day that a priest began remembering Michaela's name at the consecration of the Eucharist at every one of his masses for the entire duration of her treatments...4 1/2 years. God Bless Monsignor Nemec and God Bless All Priests!!!!

By the way, very soon after Michaela and I returned home to pack our bags, my husband arrived home and we started a whole new adventurous journey in our lives.