Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Reason, Revelation, & Relationship

My latest at Faith & Family Live!

It Makes Me Think...

Anger is the worst fault. It's the heart of the devil. The angry person gnaws away every virtuous grain and devours everything that's germinating.

Anger is a stubborn thief. It gnashes its teeth at people because of their worth gifts from God. It steals whatever it can snatch.

Anger starts controversy wherever it can.  Anger is a dragon burning everything up wherever it goes. In anger, wisdom is unwise, patience strains with impatience, and temperance rushes around without moderation.

Anger is the bitterness vomiting out of the goodness and sweetness in God's teachings.  Its the murderer dividing body and soul and not allowing them to be together.  It's also a hard, immovable rock because it grinds away every good and honest thing.  When anger overcomes someone, it overcomes them with great madness, thinking neither about earthly things now about heavenly things while it shatters another person who was made in God's image.

Anger attracts great torments to itself.

Avoid this sin if you want to live in God. Avoid it so you don't wound your soul seriously.  Repent while you can.

---Hildegard of Bingen, The Book of the Rewards of Life, as found in Incandescence by Carmen Butcher

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Among Women Podcast #27

Among Women #27 features the story of St. Frances of Rome who could see her guardian angel, and the AW interview of interviewer extraordinaire, Lisa Hendey of and the Catholic Moments Podcast!

AW celebrates 6 months of podcasting! Meanwhile, your host, Pat Gohn fights seasonal allergies that have turned her usual baritone into a bass!

US Catholic Bishops' Videos on Health Care Reform issues

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Mind the Gap


This is my latest over at, but you can enjoy it here too.

I've been to London twice. Four times if you count the layovers at Heathrow now and again. And this is one of my favorite expressions found throughout the London Tube System:  Mind the Gap.

It’s a polite warning for rail travelers to mind your footing as you step onto or off the train, taking notice of the distance between the arriving train car and the platform.  You see the sign and the notices everywhere.  And the automated public address system reminds you day and night of the same, all with proper British civility.

Your safety depends on minding the gap.  Keeping aright amidst ongoing change demands deliberate attention and action.

Lately, in my own little corner of New England, I’ve been finding all sorts of new applications for the phrase mind the gap.

Creative financing with my checkbook… mind the gap.

Flossing my teeth at night… mind the gap(s).

Missing my out-of-state sisters – I must give a call… mind the gap.

My teenaged driver is learning how to parallel park, not to mention pulling my car into the garage: mind the gap, (or its second cousin, with the prefix, please God!)

And now this one:  allow me suggest that mind the gap can be a fruitful caution for married and engaged couples.

If your marriage is like mine – it often resembles a fast-moving train through life – its course passing through many stations in life.  Each station brings platforms of varying height.  Failing to mind the gap may be perilous.

A marriage must constantly adjust to new terrain and circumstances.

Recently, I expressed to my husband that I was feeling a gap between us. He knew what I meant. He was feeling it too. We had failed to mind the gap.

We had been separated by necessity (business travel is a common occurrence in our home), and we had peaceful homecomings, but other pressures were mounting. Stressors in our family life and routines were pushing us away from one another.

Weeks of not minding the gap allowed it to grow and take its toll on us.

By mentioning it aloud, in a gentle way, I was taking the first deliberate step toward proper footing.

The next step was a date night of sorts: we knew we needed to unload some frustrations about the state of our relationship, and we needed to get out of the house to do it.  Coffee and sharing a piece of pie at a local diner would suffice. 

The good thing about talking about one’s problems in a public setting is that it allows proper civility to reign.  Courtesy toward one another and others is demanded, even when you have a difficult topic to broach.  (Bear in mind, I do believe in privacy for spouses. Often discreet time alone is needed to address delicate concerns out of the earshot of others.  This was not one of those times.  We needed time away from the stressors at home.)

Thankfully, the providence of God knew just what we needed too: our restaurant hostess guided us to a private corner booth.

We placed our order, smiled cordially, and chitchatted about the kids and some routine household matters. 

When the pie came, it was the moment of truth.

What of the gap?  What was happening to us lately?  How did we let this stress consume us for so long?

We took turns, respectfully, unloading our burdens. There were many good reasons for the gap that has swallowed us.  Life is just hard sometimes, and for the last few months, it has just been getting harder.

The humble pie consumed, the waitress refilled our coffees.

What was needed was the work of apologies and forgiveness.  We had hurt each other, no doubt.  In not minding the gap, the shifting circumstances of our life tripped us up.

Very simply, we were not being MINDFUL of one another. 

We had taken each other for granted. It was a painful misstep.  Sometimes when you’ve been pulling into the same station for years, you forget to actually enjoy the local scenery and observe your surroundings.

Mindfulness is taking a deliberate, attentive step onto something solid.  It is taking notice of situations and positioning oneself to take the next logical step.

Mindfulness is more than just knowing the other’s preferences… it is actually taking that knowledge and acting on it, deliberately.  It is placing another’s needs and desires ahead of our own.

Mindfulness is doing the good thing, the right thing, yes, even the holy thing, on purpose.

Mindfulness in Christian marriage means we are always seeking to be ONE, instead of two.

When we are mindful of one another in our daily lives, we dwell in security and peace and protection.  When we fail to be mindful, we trip and fall.

Jesus stood in the gap for us between heaven and hell, between real life and something less, a counterfeit.  He came because the Father was ever mindful of the gap. 

God saw that the disturbing distance between his people and himself needed deliberate attention.  And not just temporary stopgap, but a permanent bridge that brought full restoration and communion between both sides.

And so he sent Jesus.  And thanks to Jesus, we have the way, the truth and the life – the permanent fix for gap-minding and gap-mending in our own lives.

So, hubby and I renewed our love for one another, after confessing our shortcomings.  We talked about how certain choices and responses to circumstances crowded “us” out.  There was more, but you get the point.

To quote my husband, it was like we were in a rat race and the rats were winning.  We needed to recalibrate, redirect, and recharge our unified effort in fighting off the proverbial rats in our midst.

After all, rats are those creepy gap-dwelling critters found under railway tracks and platforms.

Oh yeah, that's another good reason to mind the gap.
©2009 Patricia W. Gohn

Friday, September 25, 2009

I'm speaking at WINGS Oct. 4 & Oct 6

I'll be speaking at two WINGS groups (for Catholic Women) in early October.

Find the dates and contact info here. (MA & NH locations.)

Looking forward to seeing you there!
(and may I kindly ask for your prayers in the meantime, as I prepare?)

Hell -- the topic of this week's column at Today's Catholic Woman

In talking about The Last Things, one cannot forget about hell.  The Catechism teaches that God predestines no one to go to hell.  Yup, and there's so much more. Go here.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Fun with Wurdle

So this is what Wurdle says the podcast is about....

Looks like my brain before a podcast...with some pieces that fall off the desk onto the floor...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

40 Days for Life starts today!

Check out the endorsements here.

Start any day. Don't wait!

I'm still collecting for the Making Strides Walk!

It Makes Me Think...

The Sacred Heart

He asked for my heart which I begged Him to take,
as he did, and placed it in His adorable one,
in which He showed it to me as a tiny speck 
consumed in this burning furnace.
Then, taking it out as a burning flame
shaped like a heart
He replaced it from which He had taken it.

-----St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Among Women Podcast #26

This week, Among Women invites women to integrate what they learn in prayer with the actions of their lives.

"Blessed are They" features audio from Mother Teresa of Calcutta, now on the fast-track toward canonization.  And the "Among Women" segment features an interview with Donna Marie Cooper O'Boyle, author, speaker, and blogger. Donna Marie's latest book is about her 10 years of friendship with Mother Teresa: Mother Teresa & Me

Support Pat in Making Strides Against Breast Cancer!

Videos of Mother Teresa's teachings

On Among Women, episode 26, we share the audio from these You Tube videos.

To view them, click on the links below.

Mother Teresa on prayer and a clean heart

Mother Teresa on the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist

Mother Teresa on how to love God, and praying the Mystery of the Rosary called The Nativity

Monday, September 21, 2009

Priest appreciation video

Catholic TV produced this wonderful video in appreciation for the priests in our lives.  Cardinal Sean O'Malley opens the presentation, and the priests appearing in this video are from the Archdiocese of Boston.   This video was first viewed at the Priests Appreciation Dinner held in Boston back on Sept. 16th.  I was privileged to volunteer for the event, alongside my husband Bob.

And for what it's worth, here's a great video (below) from the Archdiocese of New York, celebrating the ordination of new priests under Archbishop Timothy Dolan. (It was filmed in St Patrick's Cathedral, of which I write about here.)

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Thoughts on Heaven

With all the hub-bub of trying to fix the broken uplink to the AW 25 podcast on Friday, I completely forgot to post a link to my latest on Today's Catholic Woman!

Soundtrack of my life

If you have time, check out "Cinderella" from Steven Curtis Chapman, and stick around for his explanation of how the song came about. And if you are a parent, be sure to keep a hanky or two handy!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Problems with Episode 25 of Among Women

Thanks to our loyal listeners for letting me know of the problem.  It has 0:00 on iTunes... seems to have loaded up fine back on Tuesday... I am busy working the problem. Please say a prayer... these tech things always take me a while to figure out!

UPDATE: Problem solved on Friday afternoon!  Thanks for your patience!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Beauty as a Proof of God

My latest article on Faith and Family Live!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

It Makes Me Think...

Mary is the one creature who unconditionally accepted her creatureliness with all its limitations and weaknesses, with the trust that the Lord, who has seen the humility of His servant, would accomplish great things in her soul.  Those women who have repeatedly been deemed "weak" find in Mary their special title of glory.  How sweet to be weak when one is carried by the all-loving and all-powerful God who can do all things. That this "weakness," this gentleness and frailty is... transfigured by grace is powerfully expressed in the liturgy in which the sweet flower of Nazareth is referred to as "an army set in array."

-----Alice von Hilderbrand, The Privilege of Being a Woman.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Among Women Podcast #25

The Among Women podcast marks its 25th episode with a Marian reflection on Mary as Our Lady of Sorrows, and how that applies to our lives if and when suffering touches us.  Pat also delves into conversation with Diane Roblee, a Catholic wife, mother, and teacher from New Hampshire. Together, Pat and Diane discuss faith and a family move to a new home.

Don't forget, you can still support Pat's 5 mile walk in thanksgiving for 13 years of living cancer-free, and to raise money for research and support of women experiencing the sorrow of breast cancer.  Pat's online donation page, for the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk is here. To see a video with a donation link, go here.

Monday, September 14, 2009

"Call My Name" -- Soundtrack of my life...

New in the sidebar for the soundtrack of my life...

from Third Day: "Call My Name"
Songwriters: Tai Anderson; Brad Avery; David Carr; Mark D Lee, Mac Powell.

It's been so long since
You felt like you were loved
So what went wrong
But do you know
There's a place where you belong
Here in My Arms

When you feel like you're alone in your sadness
It seems like no one else in this whole world cares
And you want to get away from the madness
You just call My name and I'll be there
You just call My name and I'll be there

The pain inside
Has erased your hope for love
Soon you will find
That I'll give you all
That your heart could ever want
And so much more

When you feel like you're alone in your sadness
It seems like no one else in this whole world cares
And you want to get away from the madness
You just call My name and I'll be there
You just call My name and I'll be there

You just call My name
You just call My name
Call My name say it now
I want you to never doubt
The love I have for you is so alive
Call My name say it now
I want you to never doubt
The love I have for you is so alive

You just call My name
You just call My name
You just call My name

The love I have for you is so alive
The love I have for you is so alive
You just call My name
You just call My name
You just call My name

Friday, September 11, 2009

The Ultimate Moment of Truth: death, judgment, and meeting Christ

In the Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraph 1039 reads:  “In the presence of Christ, who is Truth itself, the truth of [our] relationship with God will be laid bare.”

Read more of my latest article on Today's Catholic Woman @ Catholic Exchange.

We remember, and we will never forget!

Update: A beautiful collection of tributes posted by Julie at Happy Catholic.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Help Pat Fight Breast Cancer this October!

Okay, this is a plea... I'm casting a wide net to my friends in cyberspace to help raise money for my annual walk to raise money for the American Cancer Society.

Last year, I had to skip the walk because I was still recovering from my hip surgery, but this year, I'm ready to rock!

If you or someone you love has had breast cancer, you know what a difference good medical care and research plays in the fight against this disease.

I'm a 13 year survivor, and praying for more good years!  Check out this video! (It contains a link to accept your donation!) Or to view my personal online donation page, go here.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

It Makes Me Think...

In the Eucharistic Prayer [at Mass], we hear that Jesus took the bread, blessed it, broke it, made it his Body, and gave it for our salvation. One way of identifying with this is to pray, "Lord, take me. Bless me. Break me. Make me a part of your saving, sacrificial gift for the world's bodily and spiritual needs." Having offered ourselves to the Father in union with Christ, we practice active participation in the Mass in its highest form.

This inner drama at each Mass contribute to the process of our spiritual transformation into Christ. It all takes time. When we receive Communion, we need to remember that we are not changing Christ into ourselves. Jesus is transforming us into himself. This requires a proper understanding of the Real Presence of Jesus under the appearance of bread and wine. It is not simply a symbol that merely points to Jesus. Nor is Christ's presence just a projection on our part in the sense that make him present when we receive him. As Pope Benedict XVQ told the young people gathered at the Twentieth World Youth Day:"The Body and Blood of Christ are given to us so that we ourselves will be transformed in our turn. We are to become the Body of Christ, his own Flesh and Blood.

We all eat the one bread, and this means that we ourselves become one. In this way, adoration... becomes union. God no longer simply stands before us as the One who is totally Other. He is within us, and we are in him. His dynamic enters into us and then seeks to spread outwards to others until it fills the world, so that his love can truly become the dominant measure of the world." (Benedict XVI, Homily at Marienfeld, Twentieth World Youth Day [August 21, 2005]).

The consecrated bread has become Christ's Body. The consecrated wine has become Christ's Blood. Jesus is substantially present in a way that is entirely unique. This happens by the power of the Holy Spirit through the ministry of the priest's or bishop's acting in the person of Christ during the Eucharistic Prayer. At Mass, when we are offered the Host and hear the statement "The Body of Christ," we answer, "Amen," that is "Yes, I believe."

Only Jesus can transform us into himself. Our inner receptivity is critical. To receive love, we need to be open to it. The sacrificial gift of self at every Mass is the best way to be continuously transformed into Christ. Then in Christ we become bread for the world's bodily and spiritual hungers.

----The United States Catholic Catechism for AdultsUnited States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), 2006.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Among Women Podcast #24

Among Women features a look at the birth of Mary and a reading from Vatican II's Lumen Gentium's chapter on Mary.

Plus, Pat Gohn, host of AW has a wonderful conversation with Terry Polakovic, the Executive Director and Co-Founder of ENDOW (Educating on the Nature and Dignity of Women).  Together they discuss ENDOW's mission and its upcoming women's conference.

Pat also plays promos of three new podcasts and promotes the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk 

Today we celebrate the Birth of Mary! Check out this video!

There are more great videos over at My Catholic Voice. And I've just learned that there are more videos in this series, though I have not previewed them all, but you'll find them here.

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Soundtrack of My Life...

Being a former dee-jay in the Christian radio world, and a music minister, I can't help looking for music that lifts my spirit, breaks my heart open wide, and dares me to go deeper.

So, I'm creating the occasional link in the sidebar called 'the soundtrack of my life'...

My week goes so much better when I surround my workplace and home with music that affirms my Christian walk.  So, the music I share here will be simply that... if it moves me, I'll post it.  Then, maybe, you can check it too.  If it moves you, be sure to buy that song or album. We need to support the artists whose art reflect God's goodness by lifting us up.

Today's pick:  Might to Save, composed by Ben Fielding and Reuben Morgan, of the Austrailian band Hillsong.

The lyrics are here and you can play it in the sidebar.  The version of the song listed is one of the newer covers of the song that tugged at my heart.

I've also included a few other songs that I feel just as strongly about, another Hillsong tune called Stronger, and Margaret Becker's (10 year old already) Clay and Water which I still absolutely adore.

Photo credit.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Installing Love

Tech Support: Yes, how can I help you?
Customer: Well, after much consideration, I've decided to install Love.  Can you guide me though the process?
Tech Support: Yes. I can help you. Are you ready to proceed?
Customer: Well, I'm not very technical, but I think I'm ready. What do I do first?
Tech Support: The first step is to open your Heart. Have you located your
Customer: Yes, but there are several other programs running now. Is it okay to install Love while they are running?
Tech Support: What programs are running?
Customer: Let's see, I have Past Hurt, Low Self-Esteem, Grudge and Resentment running right now.
Tech Support: No problem, Love will gradually erase Past Hurt from your current operating system. It may remain in your permanent memory but it will no longer disrupt other programs. Love will eventually override Low Self-Esteem with a module of its own called High Self-Esteem. However, you have to completely turn off Grudge and Resentment. Those programs prevent Love from being properly installed.  Can you turn those off?
Customer: I don't know how to turn them off. Can you tell me how?
Tech Support: With pleasure. Go to your start menu and invoke Forgiveness. Do this as many times as necessary until Grudge and Resentment have been completely erased.
Customer: Okay, done! Love has started installing itself. Is that normal?
Tech Support: Yes, but remember that you have only the base program. You need to begin connecting to other Hearts in order to get the upgrades.
Customer: Oops! I have an error message already. It says, "Error 412 - Program not run on external components." What should I do?
Tech Support: Don't worry. It means that the Love program is set up to run on Internal Hearts, but has not yet been run on your Heart. In non-technical terms, it simply means you have to Love yourself before you can Love others.
Customer: So, what should I do?
Tech Support: Pull down Self-Acceptance; then click on the following files: Forgive-Self; Realize Your Worth; and Acknowledge your Limitations.
Customer: Okay, done.
Tech Support: Now, copy them to the "My Heart" directory. The system will overwrite any conflicting files and begin patching faulty programming. Also, you need to delete Verbose Self-Criticism from all directories and empty your Recycle Bin to make sure it is completely gone and never comes back.
Customer: Got it. Hey! My heart is filling up with new files. Smile is playing on my monitor and Peace and Contentment are copying themselves all over My Heart. Is this normal?
Tech Support: Sometimes. For others it takes awhile, but eventually everything gets it at the proper time. So Love is installed and running. One more thing before we hang up. Love is Freeware. Be sure to give it and its various modules to everyone you meet. They will in turn share it with others and return some cool modules back to you.
Customer: Thank you, God.

---author unknown, found forwarded to me in an old inbox.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Dying With the Confidence of a Saint

What the Church and the saints teach us about Christian death. My latest article on the Catechism, over at Today's Catholic Woman.

May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

It Makes Me Think...

The more severely the person puts himself down, the more likely he is to judge another critically. As the saying goes, misery loves company.

The correction here is simple: The individual has to learn to accept himself more realistically, with his good as well as his bad points, with his strengths and weaknesses, his abilities and limitations. Then, to the degree that he can realistically accept himself, to that degree he can genuinely accept others. If he is too severe in judging his own faults, his neighbor won't stand a chance!

-----Fr. Andrew Apostoli, CFR, Walk Humbly With Your God

Among Women Podcast #23

Among Women celebrates the announcement of its affiliation with SQPN and also celebrates the joy of praying with our pope!

Plus it shares the life of a young saint, that of St. Rose of Viterbo.

Special guest is author, Gina Loehr, who shares about her newest book, Choosing Beauty, (a 30-day Spiritual Make-Over for Women.)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


It's been an exciting week here at Among Women, and we have you, our listeners and subscribers to thank for it!

This past week, SQPN, The Star Quest Production Network invited Among Women to become an affiliate podcast!  This is a wonderful affirmation of the reach and ministry of Among Women.

Fr. Roderick Vonhogen announced the news on his wildly popular podcast, The Daily Breakfastlast Tuesday, and followed it with a press release on SQPN.

So, let me take a moment and thank God for the gift of this new affiliation, but most of all for his tender mercies to me, for, indeed, they are new every morning. 

I'd also like to acknowledge and thank Mary, the Mother of God, the patron of Among Women... (I really credit her with the idea in the first place... she is, after all, "blessed among women.")

Also inducted this week over at SQPN, the delicious Catholic Foodie, and the young and hip In Between Sundays. 

Welcome to readers of Write in Between!

Not what you expected, eh?

Well, change is good, as they say.  It's time to bid Write in Between a fond farewell.

So much of my writing and podcasting work have overshadowed it, that I felt it was better to move to this new blog to keep a greater unity to my endeavors.  I hope you feel at home here, and that you'll bookmark this page and link to it as well!

And if you are a newbie to this blog, having just come over from the Among Women podcast, you are more than welcome to stick around, and please, help spread the good word about the podcast and the blog.  Feel free to leave your comments, below.

The new Roman Missal (click & learn about the coming changes):

Watch Catholic TV here! Find Women's programs: "WINGs" and "Woman at the Heart of the Church"

A Lovely Reminder for Every Day

Coffee drinkers! Support AW by drinking Mystic Monk Coffee!

Ship a Cake, and Share a Blessing