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  • Writer's pictureDavid Carlson

396 You are the soft, soft, voice that has come down from Heaven

Day 396 Friday April 16th 2021

“You are the soft, soft, voice that has come down from Heaven.”

Jacqueline Hayes briefly shared this story at our last celebration. In this reflection, she beautifully tells the whole story.

Many years ago just after Christmas, probably the Sunday between Christmas and New Year’s, when we are pondering the Christ Child being born … being born just as we were born. At that time Father Jim Frederick’s gave a homily that for me “hit the ball out of the park,” sort of like his recent homily on Resurrection.

By that I mean, I will always remember it, a mark was made on my heart and on my soul.

QUESTION - (How many homilies do you remember?) and also made a mark on your heart and soul?)

As I remember: he started his homily telling about a friend of his who he had gone to school with, who was living in Hawaii with his wife and recently their baby was born and they wanted Jim to baptize their child. Jim went to Hawaii to baptize the baby.

He gave us a little backdrop … Children born in Hawaii are often given a Hawaiian name.

During the Baptism when Fr. Jim asked “what name do you give this child? The parents said, John or Mary or Erin or Lawrence or James or Jennifer or another name in the Hawaiian tradition (I can’t remember whether the baby was a boy or girl) but then they gave his Hawaiian name.

ʻO ʻoe ka leo mālie a palupalu i iho mai mai ka lani.

Later Fr. Jim asked what do those words mean? The parents shared what the words mean and how they wanted to bless their child.

This is the translation of the Hawaiian name.

“You are the soft, soft voice that has come down from Heaven.

QUESTION (What if … suppose … when you were born, you were given the name)

“You are the soft, soft, voice

that has come down from Heaven.”

The soft, soft voice is the Spirit that we are all called to be.

So we were all given that name. Take it to your heart and remember that in the Holy Mystery is the Spirit that you were given.

Announcement #1 from John Poole

As we all know, John Poole supports several non-profits doing humanitarian work in the world. He followed up a story from the United Nations about the starvation threat to hundreds of thousands of Yemeni children as well as the story about supporting children at the border seeking asylum. I asked for the information for supporting a non-profit providing direct support in Yemen. Please understand that all donations are personal and voluntary.

This is his communication with a reputable non-profit for Yemen and for border children:

John wrote to Kathy Kelly, an old friend requesting the name of a trusted non-profit :

"This morning I read a statement that was very sobering. A UN estimate stated that, in this year, more than 400,000 children in Yemen would die of starvation. It seems unimaginable.

I’m wondering if you know of an organization that could receive and direct a donation that would help to address the alleviation of the poverty that causes the starvation. Please forward the name and mailing address, and if there is a specific person to whom it should be directed."

He heard back from the Yemen Foundation:

"I am deeply grateful for your care and support of those less fortunate and are voiceless. John, I am happy to answer any questions you may have. Here is the link to our website so that you will get to learn our work in Yemen."

- Aisha Jumaan

A brief video about Yemen:

Major US and Western Media ran articles about the People in Aslim, hajjah resorting to eating tree leaves because of the area was cut off due to the war and security issues. Famine was experienced by the majority of the population. Yemen Foundation volunteers were able to enter and provide food baskets to families of children who were severely malnourished.

We can find out a lot of information about the non-profit and donate directly on their website at:

Or send a check:

Checks are payable to Yemen Relief and Reconstruction Foundation (YRRF) and can be mailed to: 3216 74th Place SE. Mercer Island, WA 98040

For supporting the efforts to house children at the border

John writes: I found out from Annette that checks are made out to Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley.

Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley

700 N. Virgen de San Juan Blvd.

P.O. Box 1306

San Juan, TX 78589

Announcement #2: Women Erased (again)

Women Erased: Catholic Women, Feminism, and a New Paradigm for Being Church

Tuesday, April 20, 2021 at 8pm ET with Sr. Sandra Schneiders, IHM

Sign Up for this free presentation using this link:

FutureChurch will host multiple online presentations which will uncover the many ways women's leadership, witness, and ministries have been erased from our Church's Scriptures and Lectionary, historical record and memory, and communities. These sessions, featuring leading Scripture scholars and Church historians, will not only name and explore the history, but also put forth resources for correcting the record and telling the true story of women's central role in shaping and spreading Christianity from its beginnings to today.

In the spring of 2012, the CDF, under the leadership of Cardinal Gerhard Müller, issued a statement accusing Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) of promoting "radical feminist themes" and "corporate dissent." Most U.S. nuns vigorously rejected this misrepresentation as thousands of Catholics in the United States and around the globe rose up in their defense. After the election of Pope Francis and the shift in priorities in Rome, on April 15, 2015, in a report issued jointly by officers of LCWR and the three bishops who had been mandated to investigate the group's doctrinal orthodoxy, both sides agreed that the mandate had been accomplished and their conversations had "borne much fruit."

Sr. Sandra Schneiders has written extensively about the impact of feminism as a comprehensive framework for the Catholic Church, Vatican II, and the prophetic nature of religious life. After the dust settled from the 2009 Apostolic Visitation, and more acutely, the 2012 Vatican investigation, Sr. Schneiders wrote that the upheaval ultimately strengthened the bond between women religious and helped them to define the feminist principles that served as a foundation for their work in the Church.

In her Madaleva Lecture, “With Oil in Their Lamps: Faith, Feminism, and the Future”, Sr. Schneiders extols the promise of a Gospel-informed feminism on the life of the Church and the work of the Gospel in the world. Yet, she holds no illusions about the inevitability of feminism’s impact. “We cannot predict the future, we can only create it.” In her presentation for our Women Erased series, Sr. Scheiders will explore the questions surrounding feminism’s role and efficacy in the Catholic Church today. Where have Catholic feminism(s) and Catholic feminists made inroads? What more can needs to be accomplished?

Does feminism, in general, and religiously committed feminism make a positive contribution to the future of the human family and our universe, or is it destined to be suppressed or fade away, leaving the world still structured by patriarchy, torn by violence, divided between the have and have nots, and driving by individualism, greed, and hedonism?*

Join us for this extraordinary conversation with Sr. Sandra Schneiders.

Sr. Schneiders was one of the first two nuns to receive a theology doctorate from a pontifical university after Vatican II, and went on to become the first non-Jesuit female professor to be tenured at JST. She is a pioneering, and often-cited theologian of St. John’s Gospel and in the field of “hermeneutics,” or how to interpret texts. She helped establish the country’s first doctoral program in Christian spirituality, at the Graduate Theological Union, and is a highly regarded and sought-after expert in Biblical studies and the modern-day theology and spirituality of women religious.

Her extraordinary life and work were featured last year in a gallery exhibit at Santa Clara University’s Learning Commons, and her professional papers have been donated to Santa Clara University’s official archives—the first collection of its kind at SCU.

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