Reflections by Patti Murphy Dohn on the Church, family, grief, saints, and hope amidst the storms in our lives... May you always find that God is in the clouds! 

Patti Murphy Dohn retired in 2014 after 33 years of service as Campus Minister, retreat director, and Religion teacher at The John Carroll School in Bel Air, Maryland. Committed to making a difference in the lives of our youth and their families, she has served the school community since 1981. Presently, she continues her ministry through bereavement outreach, coordinating the school's alumni prayer chain, while archiving the school's history.  

Patti was awarded the Medal of Honor in Youth and Young Adult Ministry by the Archdiocese of Baltimore in 2012. She served the Archdiocese on the Screening Board for the Office of Vocations under Cardinal Keeler, Cardinal O'Brien, and Archbishop Lori. She is also a past-board member for the Msgr. O'Dwyer Retreat House in Sparks, MD. and Saint Margaret School in Bel Air.

Along with writing for "The Catholic Review," Patti is a member of the Catholic Press Association, as well as the Catholic Writers Guild and the Associated Church Press. She is available for speaking engagements, consulting, and retreat work.

Patti and her husband George split their time between their homes in Bel Air, Maryland and Singer Island, Palm Beach, Florida.

Email: pattimurphydohn@gmail.com

Twitter: @JCSMinistry

Facebook: Patti Murphy Dohn

Instagram: @PattiMurphyDohn

 God is good!! All the time!!

 

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Beautiful story! thank you for continuing to inspire us Patti.

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And your BFF didn't know this story? Great article to read. I,can envision it! What an amazing intuition you followed. Someday soon we will talk more!

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God is in the clouds

Calling on St. Joseph of Cupertino, the patron saint of exam-takers




“As long as there are tests and exams, there will be prayer in school.”


It’s that time of year again:

College finals, AP exams, semester finals….

Lots of blood, sweat, and tears, and studying, too.

My most-read blog of all times was posted last June,  2013 when the students in my “Mission and Ministry of Jesus” course were taking their final exam. We called upon the intercession of the patron saint for students taking exams, Saint Joseph of Cupertino. I had taken the classic old prayer that our grandparents might have said before their exams and updated it.


Prayer requests for students taking exams and tests:

Over the past twelve months, I have had comments and emails from people all over the world asking for prayers and intercession from St. Joseph of Cupertino for academic success for themselves and their family members. Nothing worries people more than the prospect of not doing their best on a final exam.

Join me in praying for all our students and loved ones who are now hitting the books and preparing to wrap up another semester or year of study.


Don’t forget: Acknowledge your thanks:

Be sure to follow up by posting a word or two of gratitude to St. Joseph of Cupertino in the comment area here below. Tradition holds that we must acknowledge his intercession, especially when we are successful in our endeavors.


Prayer to Saint Joseph of Cupertino, Patron Saint of Those Taking Exams:

O Saint Joseph of Cupertino,

who by your prayer, obtained from God the blessing to be asked at your examination only the questions you knew:

Grant that we may, like you, succeed in the exams we take today.

In return, we promise to make you known and to encourage others

to pray to  you for their scholastic needs as well.

Saint Joseph of Cupertino, pray for us.

Saint Thomas Aquinas, patron saint of students, pray for us.

O Holy Spirit, enlighten us.

Our Lady of Good Studies, pray for us.

Sacred Head of Jesus, Seat of Divine Wisdom, enlighten us.

Amen.

 

God is good!! All the time!!



May 07, 2014 08:24
By Patti Murphy Dohn


Go to Joseph: Honoring the patron saint of the Universal Church and the ministry of the Sisters of St. Joseph, along with a song and prayer for his Solemnity

 




Happy Saint Joseph’s Day!!

Today the Church celebrates the feast of the gentle and humble man who was the spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the foster-father of our Lord and Savior. Devotion to good Saint Joseph is strong among Catholics the world over as witnessed by the multitudes of men, schools, and churches that bear his name and pray for his intercession.


My school, which is celebrating its golden anniversary this year, has had a special love for Saint Joseph since our opening in 1964. The first teachers to staff John Carroll were the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia. These good women served our students and their families here in Bel Air for over 45 years.



Many of our students and teachers are wearing the small purple crosses which Sister Bernard Howe, SSJ cross-stitched for us to wear this Lent. “Sister B” made 1000 crosses each summer that she was on staff here at John Carroll for that upcoming year’s Lenten observance. We are blessed and honored that she repeated this generous act of kindness for our 50th anniversary year.


Guidance Counselor Larry Hensley with John Carroll junior and seniors who are sporting their purple Lenten crosses, lovingly stitched by Sister Bernard Howe, SSJ. (Photo by Patti Murphy Dohn)


Ring tradition tied into Saint Joseph's Feast and the Sisters of Saint Joseph:

Our juniors celebrated the receiving of their school rings during last Thursday’s Ring Ceremony, Friday’s Ring Mass and breakfast, and Saturday night’s Ring Dance. A whirlwind of fun, photos, and memories for the Class of 2015. The timing of our Junior Ring festivities has always been placed close to St Joseph's Day to honor the Sisters. What a wonderful time-honored tradition!!

May God richly bless these fine religious women and their community for their selfless love for our students and devotion to our school and so many other schools and organizations over their years of ministry.
 

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“Prayer of Saint Joseph” sung by Angelina

Gifted singer Angelina explains the Sicilian tradition of the “St. Joseph altar” (also known as the St. Joseph’s table), which is traced back to prayers for St. Joseph’s intercession during a medieval famine. Enjoy her presentation and her beautifully sung “Prayer to St. Joseph” from the gardens of the Sisters of St. Joseph of the Apparition overlooking St. Peter’s Basilica.





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Saint Joseph: A Hidden Life from "Who Cares About The Saints?”

Fr. James Martin, SJ reflects on the life and profound influence of Saint Joseph in his 7-minute video from his Loyola Productions DVD "Who Cares About The Saints?” based on his book by the same name. Be inspired.





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 Through the intercession of Saint Joseph, may we daily discern the ways we can serve our neighbor and follow the vocation to which God calls us.


Prayer to Saint Joseph:


St. Joseph, patron of workers and carpenters, you were entrusted to be the foster-father of the Son of God.

In our work may we place our trust in your example.

May your spouse, the Virgin Mary, increase our gift of gratitude for the vocation that was given to us by the Father and Holy Spirit.

 Amen.

— Brother Ed Luther, C.S.C.




March 19, 2014 12:23
By Patti Murphy Dohn


Countdown to Christmas: It’s Christmas Eve: Waiting for baby, Christmas with two popes, Santa’s prayer poem, prayers for Christmas Eve, and more great Christmas music

 

“Today you will know the Lord is coming, and in the morning you will see his glory.”

— Invitatory to Morning Prayer, Christmas Eve

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Introduction:

In the last Advent days leading up to Christmas, I will share some reflections, prayers, and music for you to enjoy during this very hectic holiday season.

Our baby countdown: 

Pope Francis compared the Church to an expectant mother in his homily on Monday morning at the Casa Santa Marta. "Like the Virgin Mary, the Church this week is expecting a birth… Is there space for the Lord or is there space only for parties, shopping and making noise?"

My family is literally expecting a birth as my daughter Meighan is a little more than three weeks away from delivering her baby girl McKenna. I was delighted to again take her to for her routine check-up this afternoon at the Greater Baltimore Medical Center. It was a thrill to hear my granddaughter’s heart beating strong in utero as the nurse-practitioner ran the doppler over Meighan’s “baby belly” and counted her heart rate. 

The last days are filled with joy and excitement for our family, but we know that Meighan is experiencing back aches, fatigue, and the normal first-time parent anticipation. This beloved baby is already part of our hearts. And as we wait, we know that next Christmas she will be delighted with the sounds and wonders of the season s only a nine-month old can experience. Bring it on, says this proud Grandma!!

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"Santa’s Prayer on Christmas Eve:" By Warren D. Jennings

The sleigh was all packed, the reindeer were fed,
But Santa still knelt by the side of the bed.

"Dear Father," he prayed "Be with me tonight.
There's much work to do and my schedule is tight.

I must jump in my sleigh and streak through the sky,
Knowing full well that a reindeer can't fly.

I will visit each household before the first light,
I'll cover the world and all in one night.

With sleigh bells a-ringing, I'll land on each roof,
Amid the soft clatter of each little hoof.

To get in the house is the difficult part,
So I'll slide down the chimney of each child's heart.

My sack will hold toys to grant all their wishes.
The supply will be endless like the loaves and the fishes.

I will fill all the stockings and not leave a track.
I'll eat every cookie that is left for my snack.

I can do all these things Lord, only through You,
I just need your blessing, then it's easy to do.

All this is to honor the birth of the One,
That was sent to redeem us, Your most Holy Son.

So to all of my friends, least Your glory I rob,
Please Lord, remind them who gave me this job."

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Christmas visit of Pope Francis to Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI:

I just love the photos taken yesterday when the Holy Father joined Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI for a pre-Christmas visit to his residence, the Mater Ecclesiae monastery. As the four candles of the Advent wreath burned brightly on the coffee table, the two Holy Fathers enjoyed conversation after stopping for prayer in the small chapel. The Vatican statement said that Pope Francis came to "give his best wishes for the Christmas celebrations."

Osservatore Romano / Reuters

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Music for your Enjoyment:

“Hallelujah” chorus from Handel’s Messiah

Breathtaking: Sir Colin Davis conducts the Tenebrae Choir with the London Symphony Orchestra, December, 2006:

Traditional for the audience to stand for the “Hallelujah” chorus, it has long been held that this custom started when King George II was so moved that he stood at the London premier performance.


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“O Holy Night” sung by Josh Groban

 Enjoy my all-time favorite Christmas hymn “O Holy Night,” sung by Josh Groban and set to scenes from film “The Nativity Story.”



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 Prayers for Christmas Eve and Christmas:

Christmas Eve Prayer:

Loving God, Help us remember the birth of Jesus,
that we may share in the song of the angels,
the gladness of the shepherds,
and worship of the wise men.
Close the door of hate
and open the door of love all over the world.
Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting.
Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings,
and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.
May the Christmas morning make us happy to be thy children,
and Christmas evening bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts,
forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus’ sake.

Amen.

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Nativity Prayer of St. Augustine:

Let the just rejoice, for their justifier is born.

 Let the sick and infirm rejoice, For their saviour is born.

 Let the captives rejoice, For their Redeemer is born.

 Let slaves rejoice, for their Master is born.

 Let free men rejoice, For their Liberator is born.

 Let All Christians rejoice, For Jesus Christ is born.

Amen.

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Prayer for Christmas Morning:

The day of joy returns, Father in Heaven,
and crowns another year with peace and good will.
Help us rightly to remember the birth of Jesus,
that we may share in the song of the angels, the gladness of the shepherds,
and the worship of the wise men.
Close the doors of hate and open the doors of love all over the world…
Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting.
Deliver us from evil, by the blessing that Christ brings,
and teach us to be merry with clean hearts.
May the Christmas morning make us happy to be thy children,
And the Christmas evening bring us to our bed
with grateful thoughts, forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus’ sake.

Amen.

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Christmas Prayer of Blessed (Soon-to-be-Saint) Pope John XXIII:

O sweet Child of Bethlehem,
grant that we may share with all our hearts
in this profound mystery of Christmas.
Put into the hearts of men and women this peace
for which they sometimes seek so desperately
and which you alone can give to them.
Help them to know one another better,
and to live as brothers and sisters,
children of the same Father.
Reveal to them also your beauty, holiness and purity.
Awaken in their hearts
love and gratitude for your infinite goodness.
Join them all together in your love.
And give us your heavenly peace.

Amen.

 

December 24, 2013 12:12
By Patti Murphy Dohn


Countdown to Christmas: Prayer for Christmas Eve

 

 

Prayer for Christmas Eve 
 
 
Loving God, Help us remember the birth of Jesus,
that we may share in the song of the angels,
the gladness of the shepherds,
and worship of the wise men.
Close the door of hate
and open the door of love all over the world.
Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting.
Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings,
and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.
May the Christmas morning make us happy to be thy children,
and Christmas evening bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts,
forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus’ sake.
 
Amen.

December 24, 2013 11:50
By Patti Murphy Dohn