Prayer in a Plain Path

carrying-the-cross

By Charlie Johnston

While the Internet was down (which is still sporadic up here – down four times yesterday when it was fairly steady. We have rain and hail and now a forecast of snow coming Sunday) – a very good friend of this site and a dedicated Christian Missionary asked urgently for prayers. Andrew Pocta and his wife, Cristina, have dedicated their lives as Missionaries with the Missioners of Christ – one of the permanent “Go Forth” links I have up here. Their three-year-old daughter, Bella, was born with Spina Bifida and is in a wheel chair. Now they are told their unborn son has the same. Andrew asked for the prayers of this community as we entered into the Novena to Our Lady of Fatima.

I began my Novena on May 5 – but you can properly say such a Novena up to beginning nine days before the Feast Day, which is May 13, to ending nine days after – or any nine days in between. So if you have not begun a Novena yet, you can. If you have already begun, you can add Andrew and Cristina’s intentions. Adding a serious intention to an existing Novena is kind of like receiving the Eucharist in one species – If you have received any part, you have received fully. Here then, is Andrew’s urgent request:

“I know you need a few days to generally respond to emails – but I have an URGENT prayer request that I hoped you could pass along to readers! 

As I’ve shared with you in previous emails (I sent a photo of my daughter Bella), my wife Cristina and I have a 3yr old daughter – Bella, who was born with Spina Bifida and is wheelchair bound. Cristina had multiple tests done and the doctors said that she doesn’t carry a mutation or gene for this birth defect. 

We just went in for a routine ultrasound at 18 weeks of pregnancy, and the doctors are SHOCKED….our son, Andrew Joseph, also has Spina Bifida, in the same location of the spine that Bella had when she was in the womb.  We were/are devastated…..shocked….but know that He is in control above all else. The doctors said the chances of this happening is the same as a person getting struck by lightning twice…..they are completley perplexed.  

We are asking people to pray for us during the novena to Our Lady of Fatima (the follow up ultrasound lies on the feast day – May 13th) 

……our intentions are 1) A miracle healing, if it’s in God’s Will. 2) If a healing is not His Will, we ask for Grace and Strength to embrace this cross for our son and daughter

3) for God to provide financially/physically for the many things to come – building an in-law suite on our property so that our in-laws can move in and help Cristina with Bella (her wheelchair weighs a ton and she has to be lifted up too!) when Andrew Joseph is born in late August/early Sept.  

Charlie, THANK YOU for your prayers….if it is at all possible, please share this with our community of readers! – Andrew Pocta” 

Let us offer our prayers of solidarity and petition on behalf of the Pocta family. I have asked the Lord to send St. Peter to stand watch with them and to comfort and guide them.

*********

I very much appreciate all the prayers and Masses being sent up for me by so many in response to my request yesterday. I was both inspired by and uncomfortable with the many expressions of affection written to me yesterday. I need the prayers and Masses enough I can bear the “virtual” testimonial dinner that ensued.

But one thing worried me for a very specific reason, as I will explain shortly. If all I have been shown continues to come to pass, I certainly have been appointed an honored position in the Master’s livery. But it is very important never to mistake the coachman for the King.

When my daughter, Christie, was 11 years old, she shocked me by asking me if I was secretly God, here to check things out. I was so stunned I asked her what could ever put such a wild notion in her head. An articulate child, she laid out her case – mostly centered on little kindnesses she had often seen me secretly do for people who I was in public disputes with. (I am no pious sap who glories in petty martyrdom. I simply do what seems best able to defend the faithful or to open up a hostile heart to the hope that is in God. Sometimes there can only be battle; sometimes a small anonymous kindness can open a heart. I do what seems most effective). I emphatically told her that that was not the case. I noted that God is all truth, that there can be no lie emanating from Him – and she agreed. Then I told her, “I am not God – and if I were, I would not be able to say that.” She sullenly accepted that and quit arguing with me.

I know some wonder here why I speak so frequently about my son and so seldom about my daughter. It is not for the reasons you probably think.

My daughter, Christina.

My daughter, Christina.

When she was 12, things started ripping through Christie, horrible disordered behaviors. I won’t go into detail, but it was bad enough she was made a ward of the state on a delinquency petition and was in and out of residential facilities, hospitals, and juvenile detention facilities. She was a master of escape, too. Alternately perfectly normal and charming – and deeply disordered, the problem was made far more difficult because she was far smarter than any of her therapists. She loved to play them for fools, first convincing them she was a wounded child, then when they were completely bought in, slam-dunking them. We had many therapists who started by thinking I was a monster and that they had reached her – and suddenly ended by thinking she was a monster and refusing to have anything more to do with her. We visited her every week and I emphasized she had to stop doing that to people. She looked at me and said, dripping with contempt, that those people didn’t care at all about her – they only wanted to be the special “one” to reach the troubled little girl. “It’s not about me at all for them, Dad, it’s all about them – and they deserve what they get.” The time came when she waged a sort of war against her brother and me. It was an agonizing time. Once, about a year and a half in, while pleading with her, she told me she did it to force my hand, to make me reveal who I was, for that was the only thing that could stop her. I was stunned again for I thought that was settled – and emphasized again that she had it wrong and I had proved it to her. She looked at me with the same contempt she had for her therapists. Her story took several other iterations over the years of the troubles, but that was the beginning of it.

When she had been there for about a year, she started complaining of voices speaking to her and troubling her. The staff thought it was a gambit, but I was alarmed. On our visits, she could come on little day trips with me, as she was in on a delinquency petition, not any abuse or neglect. Often, we stayed at the farm, and had little softball or other games involving the other kids. It would break your heart how utterly abandoned many of the children there were – and their absolute hunger for kind, non-predatory adult attention. They looked forward to our visits almost as much as Christie did. But on this occasion, I made sure we went to a Museum and left Charlie with relatives, so we could talk privately. I told her then of my situation – and that she should take those voices very seriously and pray Our Father’s, Hail Mary’s, and Glory Be’s until they left her alone once they started. Her response was not what I had ideally hoped for. With a look of triumph, she said, “I knew it! I’ve always known it! I was right!” I told her that having the Master speak to me was NOT the same thing as being the Master. Her response was merely, “Close enough.”

Things got worse from there and the real trials commenced. She would escape from a facility – often taking several others with her. Usually it was just for a few days. When she wanted to go back, her and her little gang would walk prominently into a town, where she knew police would be looking for them. At one point, she was banned from all shelters in the St. Louis area…not because she was violent or anything, but because they knew she could – and would – escape under their very noses. That would have been okay if it had just been her, but she often took a few with her. Authorities knew there was nothing they could really do to stop her, but that she could take care of herself pretty adroitly – but the others were not so astute and put in real danger from the escape by the areas they frequented. Then she started staying gone on her own for months at a time, before being caught.

Just after she turned 18, whatever had driven her vanished as mysteriously as it came. We were reconciled. She tearfully told me she did not know why she did the things that she did, except that she wanted to do what she wanted to do – and knew she could bend officials to her will. Her memory of it all was even fuzzy – dreamlike, as she put it. In thinking of it, that is where I came up with the example of having wildcats tearing through your house. It is a wonderful relief when the wildcats are finally gone – but you still have a house that is torn up internally that needs a lot of work to get set right. So it is with my daughter, and so I speak sparingly of her so as to give her room to try to overcome the disorders that trouble her outside of any spotlight.

She is one of the most brilliantly talented people I have ever known. Utterly fearless, she can conceive of a brilliant, very original plan to solve a problem, then carry it out with flair and startling effectiveness. Several times, when I have had a crisis in my work, I have called on her to manage short-term projects that were nigh impossible – and she comes through. Once, when she was living in Alabama, a mail house made a huge blunder. I had a week and a half to get several thousand signatures on a petition to qualify a Senate candidate. It was a grave crisis. I called her and brought her up for two weeks. She got up, and with a little direction, recruited a team of volunteers in Chicago, where she did not know anyone – and had them competing with each other to see who could get the most signatures. We got 5,000 new valid signatures in a week, with her team coming up with about 3,000 of them. It was brilliant – and well-nigh impossible. And it was technical…there are specific criteria involved for getting VALID signatures…and Christie followed and enforced it. On the review before submission, only about 500 had to be knocked out – and that was over and above the 3,000 valid ones she got. I know right now that if I need to accomplish the impossible very quickly, Christie is the one to go to, whether she knows anything about it or not. She will learn immediately and make it happen. But she can’t sustain it for more than a few weeks, before she succumbs to dysfunction and erratic behavior, fueled by substances.

So this is my great sorrow. My little girl is one of the most brilliantly talented people I have ever met. Before the troubles came, she was a dear friend. She used to wait for her brother to fall asleep and have marvelous little witty and insightful conversations with me before she drifted off to sleep herself. Those chats remain among my most cherished memories. If she manages to get her disorders under control, she will be a truly world-class talent and a great asset to many during the Storm. There are several family members working hard and giving of themselves to get her through into what she can be and is called to. But she is not because she cannot sustain the brilliance for more than a few weeks at a time before crumpling into a truly hot mess. For me, it all began when she sullenly and determinedly mistook the coachman for the King. You can see why I have a visceral horror of that, even when it is offered as a compliment. I know what it can beget. Pray for my dear little girl. I need not be reticent about my son, for he has embraced his work with steady sobriety.

In the next few months, I will meet many of you. I fear, reading some comments, that the expectations may well exceed the reality. Many expect me to be soft-spoken, relentlessly pious…all the religious stereotypes. I am none of them. When I speak, there sometimes rises a passionate intensity that moves and inspires people profoundly. I thank God for that. But I am very plain. I like to laugh, I can be loud and bold, and when I am working through a problem, I usually work through indirection. Sometimes, I focus intently…more often, when I reach a sticking point, I watch a detective show, play a video game, or read a suspense novel. My mind works powerfully on its own when I am not consciously thinking of the problem. Turning away from the problem altogether clears away a lot of weeds and allows it to work through particularly thorny matters. Alternately, I sometimes relentlessly withdraw into silence. I need it desperately. I like plain things – chicken-fried steak, chili, beef stew. Shoot, I am not what even I would expect an emissary appointed from heaven to be like. It is all too big for me…way too big…so I just focus on the work. If I do the work well and steadfastly, it won’t matter who or how intense the critics are. If I don’t, all the encomiums in the world won’t help me. I stick to the work, live plainly and trust God to help me. I am a coachman – with the appetites and tastes of one. I try to be there when it is time to ride and, so far, I have done okay. But that is what it is.

 

About charliej373

Charlie Johnston is a former newspaper editor, radio talk show host and political consultant. From Feb. 11, 2011 to Aug. 21, 2012, he walked 3,200 miles across the country, sleeping in the woods, meeting people and praying as he went. He has received prophetic visitation all his life, which he has vetted through a trio of priests over the last 20 years, and now speaks publicly about on this site. Yet he emphasizes that we find God most surely through the ordinary, doing the little things we should with faith and fidelity. Hence the name, The Next Right Step. The visitations inform his work, but are not the focus of it. He lives in the Archdiocese of Denver in the United States.
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117 Responses to Prayer in a Plain Path

  1. Becky-TN says:

    More prayers, Charlie! Hugs in there, too!

    Like

  2. johnmcfarm says:

    First, I would like to say that having met Charlie many times at political events he is a well spoken, witty, brilliant man…but definitely a man. I believe his testimony about his visitations, but I do not think of him as anything other than a very good man.

    Now, to the meat…my heart bleeds for you in regards to your daughter. I am very aware of the pain and suffering you are going through because I have a similar circumstance with one of my daughters who last July decided she wanted nothing to do with me and has made me out to be a monster in her own mind. There is not a day go by that the awful feeling of the hole in my soul does not afflict me. I will add your daughter to my prayers Charlie. For me, I intend on going back to the Marian apparition site up near Green Bay and begging Mary to intervene on my and my daughter’s behalf. I have confidence that will help.

    What a load you carry, remember to let God carry it for you as often as possible. He truly wants to bear your and each of us our burdens. God bless!

    Liked by 3 people

    • diane says:

      Green Bay is where I grew up – left there for the warm south in 1979 – I still have my mom and brothers up there and will be going up next month. I went to the Marian Shrine for the first time 2 years ago. I heard about it on Spriit Daily. All the while I grew up there i never knew it existed. My uncle took me and it was a very special visit, with him and with Our Lady of Good Help. I came home from that trip and felt so protected. A wonderful feeling of well-being came into my soul, something I cannot adequately describe, but something I will never forget. Very protected and very much at peace.
      Charlie, your story is so open and so able to shine light on a dark situation. I have always believed that when we bring these disfunctional problems out of the quietness of shame, fear, embarressment or any other reason we tend to bury them there is an extraordinary light that shines on them and expels the evil that the satan likes to think he has control over us because of them. I recently shared with this group that my youngest daughter was a victim of rape and I will say honestly that I felt better for sharing a trajic journey with you than if I had bottled it up. My youngest if home from college for the summer and taking a semester off (great timeing – considering the Storm), but I often tell her she had nothing to hide or be ashamed of, and when a light is shone the darkness flees.
      Prayers going up for all of us. Be strong. Love, I do.

      Liked by 3 people

      • charliej373 says:

        Well, I had been contemplating this for over a month – and then some of the uncomfortably exorbitant praise struck a nerve. I have generally been of the opposite mind. I think the therapeutic culture has taught people to talk so much about their hurts that it becomes like a scab – we pick at it so much it never heals. Usually I think it best to just get up and move on…but several things came together that persuaded me to write this. I love my daughter – and I so miss the bright, lively person she was and is intended to be.

        Liked by 2 people

        • diane says:

          Charlie,
          I did not intend to mean to blabber about the incidents, but just not to be afraid of saying something without shame. the Satan is relentless, we all know that, but he does seem to step back away from us if he can no longer induce fear, shame, embarrassment, or any other lack of trust in our God. And always when sharing the information to be sure that the person on the receiving end to know that your awareness of God being in the midst of everything – period. Not looking for anything but healing from God. Community is what our Church is about. Without the support of our brothers and sisters in Christ we fail. Our God is so into us and so supportive of us, that we have to support each other and love each other. God Bless you all.

          Liked by 2 people

          • charliej373 says:

            Oh, I know, Diane. Sorry if I came off cranky – it is not what I intended. I well know the relief of Confession if I have failed and been guilty of something of consequence. Sometimes it has been the relief of a cool waterfall on a hot summer day.

            Liked by 1 person

      • johnmcfarm says:

        My journey to plead forgiveness and ask for intercession was a long thirty year pilgrimage. I cleansed some major guilt and shame and was also amazed at how my prayers were answered. When I go Charlie, I will pray for your daughter as well…and, for your daughter Diane.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Kimberly Devers says:

    Prayers for you Charlie, and prayers for your sweet daughter. It is necessary to rest in Him. He is The Truth. Rest when it’s time to rest, move when it’s time to move. I pray for the grace these days to do nothing more (or less) than that.

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  4. Leslie R says:

    Charlie – have you seen the movie “Interstellar”? a long, but intriguing story of a father and his daughter and riding through the storm… if not, is there a chance you could watch it together? Plan for a popcorn & root beer break half way through!

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    • charliej373 says:

      No, I haven’t seen it. I spoke with my daughter last week. The thing is, there is no one she more admires than me, there is no one she more wants approval from than me, and there is no one she feels more guilt about than me. As for me, when she is playing a gambit, old hard-nosed Dad has a father’s heart, which easily melts and can quickly become enabling. We both chuckled that the relationship is “complicated.” But because of all that, this time, I am largely staying in the background.

      Liked by 4 people

  5. Paul says:

    Wow Charlie!…you NEVER KNOW what people are dealing with…seems like everybody, and especially those who are trying to follow Him, are dealing with something.
    Substance abuse issues can be really tough. I’ve been fortunate to be sober now for over 30 years, but have plenty of experience in that dept.
    Will mention you and your loved ones, especially your beautiful daughter, in my daily Rosary intentions.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Barb Watry says:

    Dear Charlie,
    I have been praying and will continue to pray for you and your family. I believe those called to be watchmen/prophets (and coachmen) have a particularly trying task. So I always pray for them.
    I will also add Andrew and his family to my prayers.
    May God bless you in your work. May He bless us who read/comment and attempt to discern his will for our lives, in the Storm, through the Storm and after the Rescue as we desire to build a world after His heart.

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  7. BJ says:

    intriguing background to your spiritual experiences Charlie…. there has to be a connection…
    aren’t you able to access help/support/insight from spiritual visitors? …. being exceptionally clever is a real burden in life…thankfully it will never be a problem for me….. your daughter sounds like a mixed up/tormented angel

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    • charliej373 says:

      No, it doesn’t work that way. The answer is always trust. Let me give you an example:

      Once I was in dire financial straits during the difficult mini-storm. I was almost frantic. My angel came and told me there was money in the mail today. I was flabbergasted. I went through all my protocols – and it met all of them as to authenticity. But the NEVER talk about money. I was deeply intrigued. So I made a beeline home and got the mail. None of the envelopes looked promising – but I opened up one that was a solicitation for some religious charity. It used the gimmick of taping a dime to the letter (a once common gimmick on fund-raising appeals). Oh how I howled with laughter. I imagined my angel gathering a bunch of his angel buddies just before I opened the letter and saying, “Hey guys, check this out,” then rolling on the clouds laughing as I rolled on the floor.

      It could seem callous, I suppose. It did not relieve the temporal problem at all. But I do love a good laugh, including at my own expense. And the fundamental message was that God knows…He hadn’t quit paying attention, so press on.

      On the rare occasions that I am told something specific I must do, I usually most emphatically do NOT want to do it. Most of the time, I must, just like you, take the next right step and take full responsibility for my decision. I am just expected to be better able to trust.

      Liked by 7 people

      • malachi99 says:

        Charlie you are some craic. I gotta admit, despite being a first class practical joker and wind up merchant myself, this has taken things to a new level. I really have to up my game.

        Liked by 1 person

        • charliej373 says:

          You often have words of wisdom, malachi, but I must confess, I have no clue what a craic is.

          Liked by 1 person

          • malachi99 says:

            Ha. Well Charlie if you ever have the good fortune to come to Ireland I will personally make sure you will be having a bit of craic every night 😂. The word is Gaelic with no direct English translation but it simply means fun accompanied by stout, whiskey and music on most occasions. The most amusing thing about using this word is that it is pronounced precisely like crack. So when a non-native speaker hears that we irish love a bit of craic they’re like man do you really do that ##it.

            A typical conversation:
            Paddy: “how’s the form. What did yis get up ta last night?”
            Seamus: “ah sure ye know yourself we went to kitty’s and had mighty craic. Twas a fierce night altogether.

            Liked by 2 people

          • charliej373 says:

            Hey, I like the stout and the music part…but could I substitute gin or rum for the whiskey?

            Liked by 2 people

      • BJ says:

        cool! are these creatures angelic to look at or what exactly?….. great sense of fun all the same… so we can have ‘down to earth’ laughs in heaven 🙂 great news

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      • DanSouthChicago says:

        What a wonderful story about the money in the mail, a reminder that God has things under control, even if His solution is not what we had in mind. Thank you for that. I needed that. Not exactly the prosperity gospel, eh?

        I remember you saying that our angels get downright giddy when we get things right. It is very comforting to know that they love us, and God of course, so much that they care.

        Prayers for you, your daughter and the Pocta family.

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        • charliej373 says:

          Ironic, isn’t it, Dan, that the biggest problem with the prosperity gospel is that it is so impoverished that the only “good” it can imagine are the goods that are constantly passing away?

          Like

  8. CrewDog says:

    I ask for The Lord’s Blessing for my Friends here and ALL My Comrades in Faith … especially for those in the most dire need today! Jesus I Trust in You!. AMEN!!
    I’m not much into Novenas and such but be assured that I “bug” The Holy Trinity and Heavenly Host for the intentions of All the above … many times a day … and when my old bones-n-bladder awaken me in the wee hours ;-(
    Charlie! I’m glad to hear that you are not one of those Holy Joe Types that tend to cause my hemorrhoidal tissues to become inflamed 😉
    GOD BLESS ALL HERE!!

    PS: Please remember my late Ex, Barbara, who self-destructed at age 44. Even with all the pain-n-strife she caused with me/family, I still consider her The Love of My Life! Charlie’s daughter’s troubles brought her to mind.

    Liked by 2 people

    • charliej373 says:

      Praying for your late wife, CrewDog. Ah, the pain and affection we have for one we love who is so damaged. I am glad she remains the beneficiary of your prayers. (and even if it is fond remembrance, that, too, is a prayer).

      Liked by 3 people

    • connie says:

      CrewDog, I had to laugh out loud at your reference to hemorrhoidal issue! Brought to mind a time when the kids were small and we were going down the road with three of them in the backseat making a racket and probably bickering. At that time I was going to school to get my BS in nursing, working part-time and running them to all kinds of activites so to say the least I was frazzled plus I have a cajun quick-temper that is a thorn in my side! Well, I hollered at ’em- probably bellowed- and then immediately was sorry for it. So I told them I was sorry and my middle child, (sometimes too smart for his own good, whom I have told that he is going to be doing something important for God because the satan has had it in for him since even before he was born) this son remembered me in the past BLAMING MY HORMONES for losing my temper with them , so he pipes up after my immediate apologies directed to the backseat, and says “Oh, Mom, is it your hemorrhoids again?” I stopped in puzzlement then chuckled, Yes, it is. My three little hemorrhoids!

      Liked by 4 people

    • Mick says:

      Prayers for Barbara, CrewDog.

      Like

  9. Lin says:

    Charlie,
    Will add your daughter to my prayers. And thank you for sharing the prayer request from Andrew Pocta, as well.

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  10. Petra says:

    Please forgive me for this bluntness, but why are you telling us this (about your daughter.)?

    Like

    • charliej373 says:

      Several reasons, Petra. People have occasionally wondered openly why I speak so often of my son and so seldom of my daughter, suspecting, I think, that there is estrangement between us. There is not. Second, with the obvious closeness between my son and me, my daughter I know sometimes worries that she has become left out because of her struggles – though she knows how I value her in a short-term crisis. Now we are at a decisive moment in history, the Storm is upon us…and for her, it is a decisive moment, as well. It is one thing to speak with your children privately, but when you speak publicly, for one who is uncertain whether she has lost her way, to publicly speak with honesty about both the problems and the real strengths she brings, tells her in a way that a private conversation cannot that she is valued and her help is wanted – when she is very unsure of her capability to stand as she would like to be able to. So it is a sort of public love letter from this father to that daughter. And to benefit from the prayers of this community.

      Liked by 12 people

      • Sue says:

        I can’t thank you enough Charlie, for this post, particularly the timing of it. I am one who struggles with addiction issues, and have children and siblings with the same troubles. It is an ongoing cycle of relapse and repent, and the battle gets uglier day by day. I think I understand your daughter very well, especially insofar as those voices-having a relentless, unceasing inner critic that beats you to a pulp psychologically at every opportunity. To have someone say that you are valued, and that your help is wanted is the sunbeam that breaks through the clouds of despair. I will pray for your daughter, and Andrew and Christina as well, and ask for all your prayers on behalf of me and mine also. Thanks to you all, such a dear and extended “family”!!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Petra says:

        Thank you Charlie. I had wondered several things – why you were so explicit about the personal struggles of a loved one on such a public forum. You explained it beautifully. Thank you. And secondly, I wondered if I had missed some deeper message.
        I will tell you one thing, and if your daughter is reading here, I will say it to her. Jesus said, if your hand sins against you, cut it off. If your eye sins against you, pluck it out. It is better to go into the kingdom of heaven maimed than to enter into the fires of Gehenna whole. With some things, there are no options. Jesus was deadly serious about this. We must excise from our lives the thing that is taking us to hell. Even if it’s our hand. Even if it’s our eye. Even if it’s the deepest part of us, the part we think is our very core. We must do damage to ourselves. And I will say what He said, Let he who has ears, hear.
        It’s not what others think of us that matters, not even what our parents think of us. It’s what God thinks of us. And He sees right to the core of us. There is no fooling Him. He cannot be lied to. St. Francis of Assisi once said, when people were praising him, I am what I am before God – nothing more, and nothing less.
        There is nothing beyond His mercy. Nothing. But you have to own it.
        Thanks again, Charlie.

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        • charliej373 says:

          Well thank you, Petra. I know your questions are always serious – and I have come to deeply admire many of your insightful comments. You asked what probably many others wondered. To write such a piece is a bit out of character for me….so a little explanation is in order.

          Christie will see the piece…probably already has. She knows I love her deeply – but as I said, the relationship is complicated. Up until she was 12, it was straightforward and direct…we took absolute delight in each other. She had a facility for clever little word games which we both got a kick out of. It would be so lovely to have that again all the time. Once, just after my pilgrimage, I was visiting with her and her Mom. For some reason, I saw her cell phone contact info on me. Under the part for address, she had written, “It’s complicated.” Oh, how we giggled together when I saw it.

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      • anne ovari says:

        That took a lot of courage,Charlie, to share with us something so personal. That is so touching that you consider what you wrote as a public love letter to your daughter. As you said you both will benefit from all the prayers that will be offered up for both of you. I hope you don’t mind me asking, but has Christie had her operation yet? Praying for you both and for everyone here. God bless.

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        • anne ovari says:

          Sorry, Charlie my comment seemed to butt in on your responses to Petra.

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        • charliej373 says:

          She will not be needing brain surgery. That was a possibility, but turned out to be incorrect, I am told. Her son had to have that type of surgery several years ago, though. It was a complete success in his case.

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          • anne ovari says:

            I’m so glad Christie doesn’t need the surgery as you both don’t need that extra burden at the moment.I’m also glad the surgery was successful for her son. Thanks be to God!

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    • charliej373 says:

      And also, Petra, the time is right where it might do some good for my daughter. Then I get constant agonized letters from parents in pain over their children. I pray first of all that Christie come through her struggle – that that may be a sign of hope to many….and that if she doesn’t, trudging on will be a sign of solidarity with all the parents in pain who write me…and thus, a lesser, but still a sign of hope.

      Liked by 3 people

      • mmbev says:

        Well, Charlie, part of the family, all of the family. That is in connection with the email I sent to you, which isn’t private from your family. As in, in for a dime, in for a dollar.

        Happy to meet you, Christina. And, by the way, I am not going to say the thing that you probably hear the most when people meet you….Gosh, you’re beautiful. I’m gonna say, reading the blog, it would appear that you are reasonably intelligent, but you don’t always use it in a way that helps you. The greatest thing I learned about you, is that you love your Dad, and he loves you. That’s bigger than beauty or intelligence. And it happens to be something in the world today, that many young people can’t say or if they do they are lying.

        I don’t know if you think your Dad is God any more, but I sure tell you that he isn’t. What I can tell you is that God needed someone to do a certain job and He picked your Dad. As it happens, some perks come with the job. He has jobs for all of us, and there are always perks. There are always things that suck. It’s complicated.

        Right now, the largest and hardest part of your Dad’s job is coming up. There are a LOT of hard parts coming up – parts he doesn’t even know about. Just about the hardest part is the one we all wrestle with–trusting Him. Trust means you don’t KNOW. You don’t get to know for sure, for positive until you have finished it. You are smart enough to be able to know how people react, how to manipulate them and use them. Obviously, this isn’t your favorite thing. People who used you are not your favorites. But it seems to me that you’ve been using them too. One can pick the real nastys out pretty quickly, but that doesn’t mean that you haven’t done some things as pay back. One thing I do know, is that you know how to recognize someone who REALLY LOVES you. Your Dad for sure loves you.That you KNOW. Not a lot of trust needed there. Trust that God loves you is sort of blind. It means you are weighing in a balance what you have experienced about someone before the story is over, and using your intelligence AND other ways of knowing, to decide what you believe about who they really are. Hardest thing to do in life is trust. And someone says you should be crazy enough to trust someone you can’t even see. Hummm. On the other hand, try and convince someone that you absolutely don’t know, with words, that you are positive that your Dad loves you. Especially someone who doesn’t really trust you. It can begin to sound a bit weird and debatable to them.

        Sometimes, learning to trust someone means sort of jumping into the deep end and learning to swim. That, as a matter of fact, is how I learned to swim. And in the end, I guess, that is basically how I learned to trust God. That doesn’t mean I don’t have to keep on trying to do it over and over. It just means I now have enough experience in our relationship that I have some past to base trusting on. There sure are times when I am sort of holding my breath. “You want me to WHAT? NOW? Not me, can’t. Treading water. Treading water. Ohhhhhh. Well, …..I’ll think., ya, I can sure do that! or….nope. I know I can’t pull this off on my own, …..but He has promised He’ll always give me wisdom if I ask and man I need it now. He promised He’d always be with me and help me. I guess this is what they call trusting Him. And now a choice.

        You can tell your Dad isn’t God because he just isn’t smart enough. If he were, the problems we’re facing would be fixed already and they sure aren’t. And he’s managed through his life to get things wrong as in misunderstand. Someone up above in the comments mentioned Francis. He did weird things too. Stripped down naked in front of the bishop, and gave all his clothes back to his dad. Not something you’d expect to see everyday (Aren’t you glad he wasn’t your Dad? Glad he wasn’t mine.). And when he heard Jesus tell him to fix His Church, it took him quite a while to figure that one out. Started with rocks and piling them up. He figured, physically fix the Church. Wrong. Your Dad’s gotten a few things wrong too. But then, he’s not God.

        Now Francis caught on quicker than your Dad. But maybe your Dad got a screwier job and it was complicated enough that it took longer to figure out. But the big time is about to hit the fan.

        He loves you. For sure, you love him. So ask the REAL GOD, the ONLY ONE, to help you and to help him.

        God knows (believe me, He really, really does) that every single one of us comes with glitches. I worked with teenagers for 20 years. One of the ways that people and not just teenagers, try to overcome or forget the glitches, is to use something or other to try and fix it or forget it. We call that substance abuse. Every family has at least one person experiencing that. However you are smart enough to know that’s a village idiot’s way of thinking. (Thank God, you’re have good well functioning brains.)

        So do what you can, and ask the real God for help. When He helps you, then maybe there can be some ways that you can help your Dad. He’s sure gonna need it big time. (He’s not God, you see.)

        When this crazy Storm is over, I hope I get to meet your Dad, and I’d like to meet you.

        Liked by 5 people

  11. connie says:

    oh, what to say about all that. Many things went through my mind reading this last post. I will have to read through it again to pray very specifically for you, Charlie, Christi, Andrew and wife and babies Bella & Andrew Joseph and all others in similar situations to you all. I always add others who have no one to pray for them in simililar situations (including souls in purgatory) because guilt forces me to remember them.

    The evil one is intelligent and sneaky. Never underestimate him is what I have learned from you Charlie. God is so very mysterious in that He gives people gifts so profound that can be of such immense help to the world yet He allows sometimes an immense burden to accompany that gift. I suppose only in Heaven will we know all the reasons why He gives what He gives and allows what He allows. And we will be blown away and give glory again forever and ever.

    I am always delighted when I think of your affiliation to Opus Dei because I delight in you being so ordinary with “your head in the clouds yet your feet on the ground”. Again, you remind me to revel in the small everyday things because God takes great delight in them also. Example, the other evening I was picking mulberries from one of our trees, thanking God for making a mulberry tree like it was, able to grow fast and big, giving ample shade fairly quickly and also even though its branches are high they bend so very easily to get the berries on the very end of the tall branches. Something so very ordinary that you may pass an ordinary old mulberry tree and if you did not stop to take delight in it you could miss the wonder and awe of God in that ordinary mulberry tree.

    Lastly, we watch our loved ones engaging in sometimes self destructive behaviour and sometimes the destruction is aimed at others. It is heartbreaking and achingly wounding in many aspects but I thank God that He has revealed to us the economy of Heaven where NOTHING is wasted. Sometimes the only consolation is knowing that whatever we suffer for another or by the hands of another, or by watching others’ suffering (esp. that of our children); that suffering, joined with the suffering of Our Lord Jesus Christ by His GREAT UNFATHONABLE MERCY, can be offered up right back for the soul who has caused us such pain and sorrow. This goes for our persecutors/enemies also. Sometimes it is is in great reluctance and bitter tasting that I offer up the sufferings of those my enemy has heaped on me back for them because they are God’s children also and I do not want any to go to Hell. Also when a loved inadvertently or intentionally wounds me, sometimes the only good thing I have in me is the willingness to offer the suffering back- for them.Again, this just can blow you away, thinking on God’s goodness to US! We who are truly so wretched at times but yet so noble at other times. Sometimes I can see why God takes delight in us and never gives up on us yet at other times(esp in these dark times) shudder to wonder why God has not yet given up on us. Little souls like Bella and Andrew Joseph, I think, are what holds the entire world up. I long for all of us to reach out to the starving, wounded, helpless, afflicted souls all around us, I pray we all become the feet, hands, ears, eyes, heart of Jesus for each other.Gonna start the Our Lady of Fatima novena today as you said Charlie, and finish up on the 16th. God is good.

    Liked by 4 people

  12. Charlie I will include your daughter in my prayers and also Andrew and Cristina. Thank you for the info about extending novenas to 9days after the feast, I started the novena today and wondered how to finish it by the the 13th, lo and behold you give me the answer.
    Deo Gratias

    Liked by 2 people

  13. little one says:

    Am praying for you and all the people and concerns of your heart. I also began the Fatima novena today.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. GB says:

    “She looked at me and said, dripping with contempt, that those people didn’t care at all about her – they only wanted to be the special “one” to reach the troubled little girl. “It’s not about me at all for them, Dad, it’s all about them – and they deserve what they get.”

    This part struck me because of the spiritual insight it offered, that is, to think about the good we do, and why we do it… or even the good we want to do, and in particular that we should realize that we can take no credit for even that, let alone glory in it…. sort of a true test — an examination of whether a do-gooder has true humility…

    Liked by 1 person

    • gwen5559 says:

      This is so true! It is only insight from God that shows us that sometimes “helping” others is all about pride in ourselves and keeping other people down. One day we will all truly see how selfish and prideful we can be and thinking we are so holy. The good Lord burned some of that out of me but it’s always a fight against pride. Your daughter is very special, Charlie to have such deep insight at such a young age. I am sure her insight is a gift of support for you in this time and the enemy knows this and wants to steal her gift. God bless you, Christina! Don’t give up.
      The other important thing Charlie for both of you is to remember that the Bible says for us to be well balanced. Working with great intensity for too long a time just opens the door for the enemy and invites him in. Take care of yourself also. Take breaks. Exercise. Whatever balances you out. We can only do what we can. God has to supply the rest. You both are in my prayers!

      Like

  15. Bless you and your family Charlie! You are always in my prayers. I have also been on the receiving end of praise that made me uncomfortable. The messenger is not the message Giver. A long time ago Our Lord gave me the image of the donkey that carried Jesus into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday as the image of my mission. The party was NOT for the donkey, thanks be to God! I’m just a lowly vehicle, and just as stubborn as that donkey, I might add! I have a friend who sometimes calls me Sister Donkey. I like that way more than being called holy which I am certainly not–yet!

    In a way I think part of the problem is that we live in a celebrity culture. People are put on pedestals all the time, but of course only God belongs on a pedestal. The rest of us can only be held accountable for responding or failing to respond to the mission entrusted to us. If your mission is to change diapers in obscurity for 13 kids, and you are faithful at it, I can be pretty sure your mansion in heaven is going to be fancier than mine!

    The other factor in people’s mis-perception about those whose mission is public is that they only see the part of us that is a function of the mission. They don’t see us like our confessor sees us, warts and all! Plenty of warts here folks! Not holy yet, but praying for the grace of sanctity for me and for all of us here on this blog and mine. God bless you all! Fiat!

    Liked by 6 people

    • Jacquie says:

      Janet,
      Not sure if you knew, but the founder of Opus Dei, Josemaria Escriva referred to himself as the faithful little donkey. He would talk of the attributes of this little creature in his writings.
      Loved your comment that the party was not for donkey!
      Yes, fully aware that Charlie is not anyone else but Charlie. But I also suspect he is at the cusp of a difficult moment that he knows he must embrace. I think a bit like Jesus in the garden. There is a job. He knew what it would cost. Jesus wanted The Fathers will! But, He was reluctant in a sense and needed the help and support of those he loved. (Peter, James and John.) Like those three, some of us who love Charlie..very much, don’t really understand. How could we?
      Let us continue in this little family to offer prayers, masses, etc praying with him and for him that he is able to embrace the task ahead.
      Gosh, Peli!, I started off writing to you and went off somewhere I did not intend. Tho,
      It might still be a useful thought….
      God Bless,
      Jacquie

      Liked by 1 person

      • charliej373 says:

        I think it was my sister who once told me that some people have grandiose delusions, but I was the only person she ever knew who fervently hoped that what he saw was merely grandiose delusions. My son today expressed some amusement that it is fitting that God should give serious, hard work to someone who mainly just wants to be left alone.

        Liked by 6 people

      • Thanks Jaquie! I will look up St. Josemaria’s writings and see what I can learn about being a good donkey! 🙂

        Like

      • Found a gem in the first five minutes Jaquie!

        #381: ‘Continue thinking about the donkey’s good qualities and notice how in order to do anything worth while, it has to allow itself to be ruled by the will of whoever is leading it… On its own the donkey would only… make an ass of itself. Probably the brightest thing that would occur to it to do would be to roll over on the ground, trot to the manger and start braying.

        ‘“Dear Jesus”, you too should say to him, “ut iumentum factus sum apud te! — you have made me be your little donkey. Please don’t leave me: et ego semper tecum! — and I will stay with you always. Lead me, tightly harnessed by your grace: Tenuisti manum dexteram meam… — you have led me by the halter; et in voluntate tua deduxisti me… — make me do your Will. And so I will love you for ever and ever — et cum gloria suscepisti me! ”’

        Liked by 1 person

        • mmbev says:

          Ok, but just remember that the “starter” is a 2 X 4. How do you people think I fractured my neck for heavens sake. Learn the lesson! (And He’s used it more gently quite a few times. But if you decide to get ornery, it can be a pretty hard wallop.)

          Liked by 2 people

        • Jacquie says:

          Peli,
          Which book was that? The Way, the Furrow or the Forge? The Forge is one that I noticed more donkey writings.
          J

          Like

  16. Crystal says:

    Prayers promised for you, your daughter and your friends.

    Like

  17. Bob says:

    I, of course will be praying for your daughter. Your story reminds me of my time working with boys in residential treatment. I tried hard but ultimately due to my personal deficiencies at the time and my ADD which made me terrible at keeping track of a group of teens with various problems, I burned out and was invited to look elsewhere for my calling, from a good man at that, who is now with the Lord. So I will pray for her. I told a friend recently that when I had teenage daughters I slept like a deer on the opening weekend of hunting season, and it has taken me so long to put them in God’s hands now and to trust him. My youngest , Jeanna, was the type that if I told her to say “yes” she would say “no” just to not be bossed or pressured. But Jeanna has developed such a good and loving heart toward children and those in nursing homes it puts my lack of love to shame. I am sure these qualities will help her if the storm comes. As for Christie we can certainly pray that if storms do come God will give her the grace to rise to the occasions more consistently and even before the trials come.

    Like

    • mmbev says:

      Glad to hear that you were holding down the fort there, Bob. My husband was in bed by nine pm. I was up later, but I had no trouble sleeping like a lamb. In my utter trust, I slept in my bathrobe, across the only door that was open, with the alarm clock set for 15 minutes past the time either son was due home. There were so few times the alarm clock went off I could count them on one hand. Mainly because they knew that I would drive (- yes, in my bathrobe) to pick them up. Whatever, we always had to have a gentle, loving chat of at least a half hour once said son was home. And you don’t even need half and hour to determine the mental state of the said person. (Oh, come on! I had three brothers before I had the sons.)

      Like

    • CrewDog says:

      I don’t really know if this is the best place to post this … but .. here it is:
      The Storm is going to bring US much unpleasantness … a lot that we haven’t thought of! Besides the probable interruption of food, water and medical/police services there will be an interruption of booze-n-drugs to the alcoholics/druggies! My C-21 unit was one of the first Military Airlift Command (MAC) units to deploy to Saudi Arabia in the build up for Desert Storm (Aug 90). We shared an Ops Tent with the C-9 AirEvac (Hospital) Plane toads and I remember one of their guys telling me that during the first month all they did was Evac alcoholics/druggies ’cause there was no “Supply” in SA ….. this was the US Military .. 25 years ago!!! …… Next factor in the interruption of freebees to the 3 or 4 generations of Welfare Slaves that, even with the Cornucopia of Taxpayer “Benefits” and countless $$ Trillions squandered, the recipients of this largess are more numerous, angry, ignorant and Poor in Spirit than ever ;-( Even in my Red State, 25% of the State Budget goes for “Welfare” Now! … Then there is the unhappy thought that unrepentant ex-cons, violent criminals, illegal aliens and Gangs tend to inhabit the same “Turf” as the Welfare Slaves and alcoholics/druggies ….. Plus Charlie’s and others claim that legions of demons have been loosed …. to where do you think? ;-( A few years ago somebody invented the term Zombie Apocalypse … even the CDC got in on the “Act”: http://www.cdc.gov/phpr/zombies.htm
      I can easily imagine a satanic Zombie Army composed of the above roaming about with nothing to stop/divert them except the Hand of God and those guided and protected by Him …… and why Charlie devoted a message to preparation for The Long Hike!!
      Hurricane Katrina/Sandy along with Ferguson and Baltimore should be more than enough of a Wake-Up Call for even the most doubting Thomas’ here that we be “On Our Own” and “Headin’ for the Tall Timbers” …. ’cause we don’t want to be penned up in a “Re-Location Camp” with, guess what!?, all of the above ;-(((((!

      GOD SAVE AND GUIDE ALL HERE!!

      Liked by 1 person

      • charliej373 says:

        Ah, you are thinking deeply and fruitfully on this, CrewDog.

        Like

      • SteveBC says:

        CrewDog, lately I’ve been thinking about our prison population, which is apparently about 2.5M, about half of whom are in for drug-related offenses.

        When the power fails and the prison guards don’t show up, every one of those people will be loosed. They will likely head for the areas you mention, and they will be very angry.

        Not a pretty prospect.

        Like

        • CrewDog says:

          The thought of Prison Populations have occurred to me as well Steve ….. and ex-inmates who are more criminal and “skilled” in crime than ever … and it ain’t just Urban Areas! The Rural “Woods” are full of ex-cons, druggies and helpless free loaders! I have, no doubt, that this will be a Long Hot Summer! We are not the Nation we were in 1968 when we had our 1st LHS. In two generations we have become a Nation of the self-centered, un-churched, un-educated, un-skilled and un-civilized. Our once great industrial/commercial cities are now 3rd World Hell Holes filled with the angry, ignorant and violent …… who will, inevitably, burst forth from their ghettos to rape, pillage and destroy……. and be joined by their like minded suburban-n-rural “kin” ;-( After Ferguson-n-Baltimore do you really believe the Thin Blue Line and The Department of Just-Us will Be There for YOU!!
          Praise The Lord and Pass the Ammunition!!

          Like

          • SteveBC says:

            CrewDog, on that cheery note, I think I will enter therapy, if only so I can lie down on a comfortable couch and talk about myself over and over again. 😀

            Like

        • torilen says:

          There is another possible scenario. I had a friend whose husband worked in a prison during the Y2K stuff. The guards there were instructed months ahead of time that they were to shoot all the inmates if Y2K actually happened.

          Like

          • SteveBC says:

            Torilen, that’s amazing. I had no idea. I wonder if such orders would be in play this time. Something tells me no, that part of the panic period is to have such people roaming around, but that’s a complete guess on my part.

            And did you know that your comment is the 21,000th comment on Charlie’s site. Way to go, Torilen, and Charlie! 🙂

            Like

      • christiaria says:

        Sounds like the mindset of the demonic, murderous mob in Kibeho, Crewdog. Truly chilling.

        Like

  18. Donette says:

    Charlie, After reading all of the terrorizing activities of your daughter, sweet though she may be, is it possible because of your visions/locutions that the satan, unable to stop you in your mission, has turned his hateful activities toward your daughter all for the purpose of hindering you? The behaviors and your descriptions of them could imply there is an entity hovering around her. The fact that she does not remember, as you have said, what she has done presents that possibility. I think, if I had been in a similar position I would have approached an exorcist priest simply to ask for his opinion.

    I am not saying she is possessed. I am saying she might need a different type of spiritual help eg. exorcism prayers that only an exorcist priest can do correctly.

    God bless you and have mercy on you for all the trials you bear.

    Like

    • charliej373 says:

      There was some demonic influence involved. Thank God it was limited in what it was permitted. That has been long since taken care of…but the aftermath remains a struggle. The worst of what I describe was then, not now. The person she hurts the most in her struggles now is herself – and her heart intends good. Concerning the influence that was there but is gone, I prefer to keep the bulk of that private.

      Like

      • mmbev says:

        Christina’s heart and soul always, always held and holds good.

        There was some outside influence, but that darn very mistaken idea, led her on a path that ended up being very self destructive. It also sounds like maybe there also the “adrenalin” kick in.

        Adrenalin is how I lived for a long time, but I can’t sustain it now. I just go to sleep. You have said that you are late fifties, I think Charlie. Now you should tell people that is chronological time. There’s a big difference. Personally, I am 346, in “lived adrenalin” time.

        Like

  19. Kati says:

    Utterly, refreshingly REAL, Charlie. Thank you.

    PS I did go to Mass for you this morning And I will continue to pray for you and everyone else here! 🙂

    Like

  20. EllenChris says:

    For now, let me offer my word of testimony: I have never thought your were God, Charlie. 🙂 I have never thought you were somehow God’s personal Mouthpiece. You seem to me to have some curmudgeonly aspects, and I have a soft spot in my heart for curmudgeons. It’s all okay. More later, I hope.

    Like

    • charliej373 says:

      Ha, Ellen…once when I was in my late teens or early 20s, someone asked me what I wanted to be – and a growled that I hoped to live long enough to be an old curmudgeon. Mission accomplished!

      Liked by 2 people

  21. christiaria says:

    Charlie,

    As I read your post, it occurred to me that you did, in fact, reveal who you really are to Christina: a faithful father who never gives up on his daughter. She may have been looking to prove something else, but it was an opportunity for both of you to learn of what stuff you are really made of under severe testing.

    Christina is one tough cookie to have survived so many trials, as are you, Charlie. It’s miraculous to me that the enemy has not succeeded in destroying your relationship–another testament to grace at work in both of your lives.

    Christina, beloved daughter of the Most High King, your name means “anointed, follower of Christ.” So be it! I am pulling for you.

    Like

  22. Jennifer says:

    You can’t know how much spiritual meat there is for me in this discussion. I also have suffered intensely due to troubled children. There is no suffering like it. It has been used by others to discredit my faith and choice to have a large family. Charlie, you and the others confirmed so much. God is good. This is truely a prep school for the storm.

    Like

  23. Spikenard says:

    I was just wondering if you could tell us why it is that leading people through the Storm is like covering a live grenade? You don’t fear the devil & his influence, do you fear the physical trauma of the Storm? And you will be a leader of sorts to give heart to those destitute, but technology will fail. So is it just the little local group you’re in charge of saving, or is it a bigger roll somehow? I can imagine some on this forum may be offshoots of you and helping save others but still it seems Heaven has larger designs than this in your doing what you are doing to alert more people? Or is it that only those choose to hear are listening?

    Also, I have family members caught in the “evil is good and good is evil” culture and would love for this Storm to convert them. But I wonder, too, is there something better than dying today in a state of grace and going to Heaven, by surviving the Storm and getting to live in that time of Peace? I will probably not persuade my husband to prepare to flee and I will accept the consequences, but I’m curious as to the value of surviving the Storm.

    Lastly, thank you for doing what you are doing. I have long prayed that God would send us a warning if something like the Storm should happen.

    Like

    • charliej373 says:

      It is very simple and mundane, Spike. Since my surgery, I need a lot of rest. When I get fatigued and keep trying to push, pain spikes enormously. I can get disoriented and deeply nauseated. I don’t see a lot of rest ahead, so I see an enormous amount of pain. I fear coming out the other side broken in some important ways. I can live with that….but I am not eager for it – and would like to delay it. But there is no time left for delays. And no, I have said before that it is not small or local. My work is for the whole world. I used to be able to dismiss that as overheated nonsense. I still try to. But I don’t believe my own reassurances on that any more. I fear all must come as I have been shown. If so, there will be great graces in it for me, but great pain and sorrow as well. This is as plain as I am going to speak of it.

      Like

      • mmbev says:

        Charlie, do you have someone to clean, vacuum, scrub a bathroom, tidy, dust, cook, do laundry, make a bed, even serve a meal? I have not had pain like yours, but once Gary died, I couldn’t even get out of a chair and put a microwave meal into the microwave. I ate crackers, cheese, porridge, and yogurt for four years.
        Nausea, dizziness, disorientation – there is a lot more you could list, but most awful is the fatigue. And no one knows because you can cover it as if it doesn’t exist, and you won’t say, or can’t, or when you do, you look so “able” that you aren’t believed. And I have NEVER suffered your neurological pain. Really, is there someone else who will do all the other stuff for you? I still don’t make a bed, as it takes about 45 minutes. I just use throws and re-throw.

        Like

      • SteveBC says:

        Charlie, this sounds like something to ask your daughter’s help on. Perhaps the two of you can come up with a creative set of ways to do what you are being asked to do, without having to experience all the pain you see ahead. Is your anticipation of the pain like your anticipation of the Storm beginning once you reached the top of Mt. Meeker a few years ago, and were prevented from doing so? If you go forward with your mission despite the fears you feel and the pain you anticipate, perhaps now that you have committed to take this path up this particular mountain, seeking a different path up this mountain is both perfectly fine and more joyful / less painful.

        I don’t know if I’m getting my point across very well. However, you have just told us how terrifically capable your daughter is at getting out of places or situations she didn’t want to be in, you have told us that you were prevented from reaching the top of Mt Meeker even though committed to doing what you were asked, and much mercy has been shown to all the world already by letting the Storm come later than originally planned. Once you are committed to the path you are now to take, it seems to me that if you walk it with clear intent, it is OK for you to seek modifications to that route that allow it to be both more joyful for you and also by example more inspiring to all of us.

        Creativity in developing better means for achieving good outcomes sounds like a way to honor your commitment and God at the same time. And if you don’t look for help and creativity, you may not get what you could have received if you had asked.

        Like

        • charliej373 says:

          Let me reiterate, Steve, that there is no question burning in my mind as to what needs to be done or how it needs to be done. All there is is some fear because it is likely to be extended, painful, and leave me further crippled. When you are about to bungee jump for the first time, the issue is not how, precisely to do it; that is fairly simple after you get the basics covered. It is just getting up the courage to do it at all. Spending a lot of time and talk on how to do it is not to refine the matter, but to justify in your mind avoiding the fundamental issue.

          Those who will help, will help; those who won’t, won’t. My job will be made easier or harder depending on such decisions. But it does not change the fundamental decisions at all.

          Like

        • SteveBC says:

          Got it, Charlie. I will simply keep you in my prayers. It sounds a tough road, but many will benefit, so thank you in advance for that, and many will help.

          Like

      • christiaria says:

        Charlie, I had a dream last night in which I was infused with joy as a result of abandoning everything to Christ. I shouted out, “It’s true! When we surrender everything, he really does give us peace and joy!” I was traveling in some strange place–there was a train–but I kept meeting people along the way who cared for me and were connected to me somehow. I had no fear and saw the hand of God in everything, even in a beautiful multi-media art installation (linen, paint, copper, leather) that had several pieces, each with part of a narrative inscription on it. There was a message I needed to decipher. Wish I could remember all of the details so I could recreate it!

        Anyway, It’s how I imagine the apostles must have felt after Pentecost, no longer afraid of the potential suffering but filled with the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit that sent them out into the streets. Perhaps we can pray together the Holy Spirit novena starting this Thursday, asking for a fresh outpouring of all we need for the tasks ahead. Also, today at Mass, I asked that you be infused with the same joy that I felt in my dream. May it be so!

        Like

        • luvmercy5775 says:

          christiaria, Your dream is indeed comforting. However, there are parts of it that I feel need interpretation. That you were traveling seems to speak of a journey. The journey of life? People you met along the way may indicate the Lord saying companionship and protection would be provided and you’d never walk alone.

          It’s the artwork that most intrigues me. Each component carries biblical symbolism. Linen is generally viewed as righteousness as in white linen robes worn by saints in heaven. Leather may refer to the “belt of truth” listed in the armor of God that holds everything else in place. Copper is a quandary. It carries a number of meanings — one of which may make sense as the rest of the tapestry is disciphered. What’s lacking is the color of the paint. Do you remember anything about that?

          Hope others will weigh in on this too. We’ll know when we have it right. 🙂

          Like

  24. donna says:

    Charlie:
    Thank you for your vulnerability regarding Christina. I will pray for her. I am sober 16 years and it’s a demonic disease. It is a family disease too, because of the rippling effect of all members. Only God can be at the center of healing. Too many of us have loved ones fighting the fight and most are losing. But our prayers are not lost on God’s ears. He hears us. The problem is we all are given the gift of free will. On the other hand, there is far greater empathy and sympathy in our society if you say you have a child with a physical problem as opposed to the malady of addiction. There is a stigma, so none of us talk about it. But if we don’t talk about it, how can we help each other. I know that there are several of us on MOG forum who have sons suffering with addictions. It’s as if satan attacks those we love most because of our faithfulness. As if it would be a distraction from our prayer life. But for me, it makes me all the more tenacious. My husband and I went to the blessed sacrament today on our way home from a staycation day. I said, let’s go to the perpetual adoration chapel. We went to Jesus and prayed for our boys….I prayed for all the people on the forums I spend time on. I lift us all up to Jesus to help us through the storm.

    Blessings also to Andrew and family. They will be on my beads now…..

    Liked by 2 people

  25. MT Butterfly says:

    Prayers for you and our daughter, Charlie. Our oldest son went through drug and alchohol treatment when he was 15 years old. Now that he is 41, it is still “complicated”. Prayers also for Andrew and his family. And prayers for all here and their families. May God bless and guide each of us as the Storm strenghtens.

    Liked by 1 person

    • mmbev says:

      Donna, Butterfly, Janet: I often think of what Charlie said about the ones we think LEASE LIKELY becoming true warriors of God because of this Storm. That is going to include both the young and those travelling some years ahead. I often think that it will give men the chance to be true men again because this society has robbed them of who they are. We can all see what it has done to our young women and a good percentage of married ones too.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. Catma27 says:

    I will pray for Andrew and family , especially to Fr Emil Kapaun .
    Also for your family! What a great faith community here!

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Anne says:

    May Love …. Jesus….nurse everyone here and in the whole world back to good health.
    Prayers for all especially the urgent situation of Andrew and family.
    Just read this wonderful quote on mallett’s latest.
    Your lives must be like mine….. Quiet and hidden in unceasing union with God,pleading for humanity and preparing the world for the second coming of God……..Blessed Mother to sister Faustina

    Like

  28. Maureen says:

    I will pray for you, Christina and Andrew’s family. Thank you, Charlie for sharing. You are not alone in your suffering. Thanks too, for giving a voice to those of us who trip over our words when trying to express deep feelings. I love silence too! It is in those quiet times I feel the closest to Our Lord. Hope our paths cross someday.

    Like

  29. Michelle says:

    I can’t speak for anyone but myself, but I think losing my kids is what taught me how to pray persistently for them. How to pray for my enemies and how to offer up all my suffering. There is a lesson in suffering. Maybe God just needs all these extra prayers right now. Prayers for you, Charlie and your kids. Prayers for Andrew and his family. Prayers for all here.

    Like

  30. Lily says:

    Thank you for sharing, Charlie. i will pray for you and your family, and Andrew and Cristina.

    My relationship with my dad (and family by extension) is also under fire as of late. 😦

    Thank you all for your stories and general wisdom. I learn so much from this blog.

    Like

  31. radiclaudio says:

    Hi Charlie and TRNS family. Its been awhile since I have commented but I have been reading your posts and everyones comments and gaining much from all. Thank you! Please know I pray for us all here very much!

    I’m sorry to learn of your daughter’s troubles but glad they seem to have abated somewhat. Also I’m glad you’re normal and not too pious or holy – lol.

    I have been going through a mini passion of my own as of late with a business that is crumbling around me at an alarming rate. I even had a partner, a sophisticated investor say the other day it’s seems otherworldly. I prayed your prayer for the business awhile back, so I assume that God is answering in this way. I thank Him for answering my prayers constantly even if He is doing so different than I had hoped. ha ha. I can’t see over the horizon like He can so I trust. Your blog has helped me be at peace even as I work hard on what little I can do. So thank you. 🙂

    Much love to all.

    Rich

    Liked by 3 people

  32. Charlie, ever since my baptism in 2001 my family and some close friends began having various problems related to mental illness. In 2003 my youngest brother converted and that seemed to make matters even worse. Yet in 2009 my mother returned to the Catholic faith after 40 plus years with the Jehovah’s Witnesses, she made her confession and received absolution and last rites. My sister was interned with acute paranoid schizophrenia in 2008, my father had 28 brain infarcts, and I believe the remaining brother is being used by the devil to stir all kinds of trouble against the whole family. In 2008 I plunged into a long period of unemployment that has not abated yet (yesterday I learned there are 93 million Americans off the workforce, a grim consolation, I am not alone.) Now recently trouble arose in the building where I live, the administration is making some asinine repairs that caused the gas company to shut down natural gas supply to the whole building (we’re in winter here!) and now they are doing some major destruction all over. We expect lawsuits to follow from the various neighbors/owners. Anyway, I tell you all these awful news to repeat something you already know: the devil will attack those who surround you. Examples: life of Job, king David. He won’t leave us in peace. Jesus came to put a sword in the world, the sword is in our hands and it is a spiritual sword only those in a state of grace can wield. We got to fight now, there is no other option. We are approaching the thick of the battle. Horrible things will be hurled at us — attacks against our brethren in the Middle East were only the beginning — you know all these things better than I do. At one point everything will be lost like in 2nd Samuel 30 when David almost collapses under the apparent loss of his whole family (see the parallel?) without knowing that he will recover everything and more and … he will be king of Israel only a few days later. I gives me great consolation to read that because I have lost everything like David, I have been persecuted by my own, just like him. You have gone through even worse things and yet here we are and by the grace of God, like David we will be still here when the dust settles and our families, friends, loved ones will be returned to us a little shaken but sound and safe. We are circling Jericho and the walls are about to crumble. The Israelite of old had to shout out loud, we get to pray incessantly; David defeated Goliath with five smooth stones from the torrent valley, we have the five decades of the Holy Rosary. Be assured of my prayers for you and your family and remember the most encouraging words of all time ““Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” Just like David after Ziklag: there is a kingdom for us on the other side of the storm.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Lily says:

      Thank you, Carlos.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Barbara Dore says:

      yikes! someone tried to stop me ! i have to repeat it…please google on a healing mass for your family tree…I cannot remember the name of this priest in USA. Father with H…Micheal Brown had mentioned his name in his website…He is very involved with the Healing mass for the family tree.

      It is very important to offer a Holy Mass for your family tree.

      Poor clare Sisters urged me to attend a healing mass for my family tree some years ago when one of them noticed that I have some difficult issues due to my parents’s sins which is still cannot repairable on Earth. God is looking after them for me. My two children sometimes complain that they feel ” something” unlucky are within our family unit. One of my children still complain that she feels Unlucky ( lady) follow her every where…

      So I am still saying a chaplet of tears of Our Lady to free my family from this unlucky lady due to my family tree and my husband’s as well.

      http://www.tearlove.org

      Liked by 1 person

      • Barbara Dore says:

        Carlos, I am sorry that I am not able to find this remarkable priest, father Hapsch???’s webite for your viewing.

        Like

        • Barbara, there are several priests offering Holy Masses for my family tree. I can see the effects. Things are changing but you know this is a battle. Today I had a chat with a friend of mine (a Thomist) who is working on some of my legal issues. Soon I hope to meet with a priest who will offer Masses of Liberation for the building and also for all members of my family. If you rememner the name of that Fr. H please visit my site and send me the link through the “contact the author” link. Thank you for your kind thoughts and charitable prayers may God repay richly.

          Like

      • luvmercy5775 says:

        Hope this is who you’re looking for. Sorry the link didn’t copy properly but it should work if you type it into your subject/search line.

        Healing Your Family Tree – Claretian Ministry

        Fr. Hampsch

        Liked by 1 person

  33. Anne says:

    After thought it came to me………Charlie, just do whatever you have to do …… One step at a time….just let the Holy Spirit lead you…. Just do it without over analysis.

    Like

  34. Monica Joseph of the Blessed Sacrament, OCDS says:

    Prayers for your livelihood, Rich.

    Liked by 1 person

  35. christiaria says:

    “Lead, kindly light, amid the encircling gloom, lead thou me on, the night is dark and I am far from home. Lead thou me on. Keep thou my feet; I do not ask to see the distant scene; one step is enough for me. Amen.” (Cardinal Newman)

    Liked by 3 people

  36. Mick says:

    Charlie, I’m praying for Andrew and his family, for Christina, and for you.

    Like

  37. Dan Lynch says:

    As a Cenacolo father of a son, and a survivor of years of pain and suffering for my wife and I, our son and our other children, I highly recommend to the parents of addicted young adults the Cenacolo Community, founded by the Mother Teresa of addicts, Mother Elvira. Hope reborn!

    You can check it out here: http://www.comunitacenacolo.org/

    “In the shadow of your wings I take refuge
    till the storms of destruction pass by.” (Psalm 57).

    Dan Lynch Apostolates promoting devotion to
    Our Lady of Guadalupe, Jesus King of All Nations,
    Our Lady of America and Saint John Paul II
    Visit our website at http://www.JKMI.com
    E-Mail Us at JKMI@JKMI.com
    May Our Lady of Guadalupe keep you under the mantle of her protection and
    may the Reign of Jesus King of All Nations be recognized in your heart!

    Like

  38. Judy says:

    Praying for you, the Pocta family and Christina, as well as those with needs on the board. In addition to the rosary, I would ask “Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass.” If that is not possible, then please give us the gifts we need for this increasingly difficult journey.

    Like

  39. Phillip Frank says:

    Your daughter sounds very much like my eldest son.
    Many of the same attributes you mentioned with all the following confusion they can incur.
    I told him some time ago when he saw how evil and frail those in charge were that he was only responsible for himself to God and not to worry about “them”, they were none of his busness.
    Their frsifly left him feeling god- like in his work view, very much like Judas considered himself com paired to the other apostles according to Mary of Agreda.
    Our Lady told her that Judas was the most proficient apostle of the twelve but it became his damnation instead of his salvation because he became jealous of Jesus’s attention to John. This threw him into a rage and eventually doubt, then hatred of Our Lord. And according to Our Lady, this was not a temptation of the devil but from the immense pride of the very capable Judas.

    Like

  40. Julia says:

    Charlie, I notice Anne posted something along the lines I want to post too.
    When you think of the journey you are planning where you will meet and speak to those God sends across your path.

    “Trust in God”
    “Do the next right thing, One Step at a time”
    “Love the souls you meet”

    Indeed, I can relate to your paternal love and concerns for your daughter. Though the symptoms you mention differ from person to person. I can tell from what you share. Your daughter is highly intellectual (wonder where she inherited that from LOL). She seems to be highly sensitive (maybe that is from her mum). And I’ll bet the girl is gifted artistically.

    All she needs is your unconditional love.

    Your daughter is the means God uses to keep you grounded. I think God is asking your daughter to carry a cross with you Charlie. God always seems to ask people to share a yoke or a burden when there is a big Heavenly Plan in operation. God will take care of her, and everything will be ok, you’ll see.

    God protect the Health, Wellbeing and Redemption of all souls. Amen

    Like

  41. pineconejill says:

    Hi Charlie,
    Seems like my lenten sacrifice has turned into a habit of not posting, but I always read you and since your plea, have been adding you to my rosary–my weapon of choice. Don’t worry, if you fall, we will just carry you.
    Also,
    I have a 28 yr old daughter who was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia five years ago.
    I’ve worked my way through disbelief, self blame, guilt, anger and resentment (oh the terrible WHY!) to acceptance and now, even finding some joy in sharing unique view of the world. Some of it is terrible, but some of it is very very funny. She’ll come in and say “Do you know what my brain wanted me to do?…” She tells me and then we laugh because it is usually absurd, even to her.
    I will pray for your daughter as I do for mine–that they can find the joy and peace of Christ in their lives and become the people God wants them to be–not who I or anyone else wants them to be.
    God Bless you Charlie,
    pcj

    Like

  42. Doug Pounds says:

    Hi Charlie,

    My prayers are with you and your daughter. With all the surgeries my wife has had from cancer, she is in a constant state of pain at some level as well. It is all offered up for souls that need to be touched by God’s love (me included). There is great dignity in suffering. I know and believe it is all for a purpose (Roman’s 8:28). I offered Mass today for you, your daughter and my daughter who is what I say taking an “around the worldly tour”. God bless you as you continue with your mission.

    Blessings from NH,

    Doug

    Like

  43. jan B says:

    The best boss I ever had was a crack head. True story. My family is made up of wildly successful drunks. Noah was a drunk according to a certain Jewish Midrash, but he ‘walked with God’, or somesuch. The same is true for ALL the Patriarchs, they have a fatal flaw, but God blesses them lavishly down through the generations.

    Malachi Martin or Fr Lamorth mentioned that many of the original Pilgrim families, the settlers, came with generational demons attached, and that these could be dealt with through prayer, fasting and exorcism.

    I have a brother who was the clear favorite in the family. He was astonishly good looking, charming and could do no wrong. My other brother would be blamed and beated for his actions. At puberty he rebelled, stealing and burning cars and worse. He went to a juvenile detention centre. He is super successful today, but still very very wounded.

    My parents loved him too much- they couldn’t discipline him.

    Do you know the story of the Fisher King? A knight is sent into the forest to find the Kingdom of the Fisher King. He meets dragons and damsels in distress, and vanquishes them all, saving the damsels. For years he searches, and finally one day he finds the Kingdom. He sees he King, stooped over, with the chalice in His Hand, about to spill it in his misery.
    “How may I help you oh King?”, asks the knight and POOF, the Kingdom disappears.
    Many years, and many trials later, the knight again finds himself at the threshold of the Palace. He sees the Fisher King, now stooped and nearly dead by all accounts, the chalice full to the brim before Him.
    “What is you wound?” , asks the knight.

    NOW YOU ANSWER THAT.

    Like

  44. jan B says:

    small edit; “What is your wound?”, asked the knight, and the King held out the chalice for him.

    Like

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