Monday, November 26, 2012

Julie Carrick - Living The Faith Boldly

Year of Faith Events - Carrick Ministries

Julie Carrick sang her first solo at the age of 5.  Since then, she has devoted her life and her music to Jesus.  Even after surviving a rare form of lung cancer a few years ago, Julie continues to minister and share her faith with Catholics all over the world.  We were recently blessed to once again host one of Julie's fantastic missions:  Living Our Catholic Creed.  

One thing you will notice about Julie is that she is humble and transparent.  She shares freely of her own pain and her own joy.  Her music flows from a wellspring of experience throughout her life.

She proudly tells of how her husband of nearly 30 years bore witness to his Catholic faith to a co-worker.

She shares her agony upon learning that her daughter had been raped and subsequently became pregnant.  Her daughter Edel's courage in accepting and embracing that new life is also a part of Carrick Ministries.

She shares her own story of temptation, when she has to make a choice between a lucrative recording contract with "stipulations" and her own morals and values.

Throughout the evening, Julie performs her award winning compositions, as well as classic hymns, interweaving inspiration with quotes from St. Teresa of Avila and an attentive reading of the Creed. 

This mini concert/mission is perfect for the "Year of Faith".  You will truly be inspired to live your faith boldly, taking a stand for marriage, for life, and for what "We Believe".

For more information on Carrick Ministries, available concert and event dates and to order Julie's recordings, see Carrick Ministries.

No compensation was received for this review.

Monday, November 12, 2012

America, Still Beautiful

On the way to church yesterday, I noticed our veterans from the American Legion hall had installed the flags up and down our two main streets.  It took a while to sink in, because I was stubbornly clinging to the thought that Veteran's Day was Monday.  I made a quick change in the music, substituting "America The Beautiful" for the final hymn I had chosen earlier.

As I struggled to sing those beautiful words without choking up, I contemplated their meaning to me:

O beautiful for spacious skies,

Thank you, Father, for unbelievably blue skies that seem to stretch on forever here in Northern Arizona.

America! America! God mend thine ev'ry flaw,

There are so many...but through the power of prayer and diligent work to amend those flaws, I still believe in U.S.

O beautiful for heroes proved In liberating strife,
Who more than self their country loved,

The tears are nearly out, my throat threatens to choke up.  I pause and take a deep breath, thankful for the congregation singing.  Thank you to my birth father who served in Japan and in the Korean war.  Thank you to my dad, who served in peace time.  Thank you to grandpa who served in WWII and to Uncle David, who died on the Bataan Death March.  Thank you to my future son-in-law, who served two tours in Iraq.  Thank you to my bestie, who served several tours in Viet Nam.  Thank you to all the veterans who made it possible for us to continue to fight at home, to keep our religious liberty, and our many other rights which are currently endangered.

So rarely do we ever get through the third verse, but do we ever manage to get to the fourth?

O beautiful for patriot dream That sees beyond the years

Thine alabaster cities gleam, Undimmed by human tears!
America! America! God shed his grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood From sea to shining sea.