Thursday, September 30, 2010

Cat in the Bag

It rained and rained today;

I called a dear friend last minute and went to her house

read books to her oldest son (3 yrs old)

played with her 1 year old,

talked with her, drank tea...

I wrapped up books in this bag

books that

I bring for my bed time reading time with the

3 year old.

Today's picks were

Jesse bear what will you wear


The Story of Babar the little Elephant.

Cleo was looking in the books which I quickly rescued

thus rescuing Cleo

as the books were going to fall off with the bag handle around her neck


Gotta watch that Cleo Cat!

I let her play with the now empty bag,
which she is now content to sit on top of...
which means no more clean cat-hair-free bag.
But it is too cute to watch her play with it,
so cat in the bag it is...
I must say I most love reading to my friend's 3 year old boy.
I brought books that were mine when I was a kid
and have slowly been finding other books
for 2.00 each
which is a great deal for a classic kids book, like Babar!
The pile of papers in the corner of the Cleo in bag picture
are my future reading material
I will be glad when my interview prep is over!
So will Cleo I think...

Links, my Cat and Various Points of Hope

My printer has been on my table for a few weeks

(other than when I have an impromptu dinner party)

since I am printing not only Akathists

but lots of job related interview prep.


The interview prep is going well,

as in I am learning tons about the field and thus

the position.

I will have the interview in exactly one week.


Meanwhile Cleo is as we speak in her new 'spot' on

the bookshelf.

She is a comfort to me as she is great to give hugs to.


Really liked this post by Fr. Stephen;

neurotic Christians;


Sometimes it is just a good reminder to pull back a bit and breathe.

St. Phanourios;

A lovely Greek lady gave us some

St. Phanourios bread.


It filled me with a sense of joy, of hope.

This Saint, as you may know,

prays for us to find those things we need...

for me this is the need for a job

and for whatever my heart needs

(I need something, just not sure what!!)


It was the best St. Phanourious bread I have ever had;

incredibly light;

the prayer and skill for making this small bread

was not small!

I recently prayed part of the Canon to St. Nina and was hearted
to realize how she prays for those who need
salvation, who need baptism.
On my heart are some deeply loved ones
in my life
who are not yet baptized Christians
and who I deeply wish would come to church and
deepen in their journey towards God in the church
and walk the road of healing towards Christ
that we all pray we are on...
Some incredible links I need to share with you,
in case you have not found them yet:
I find listening to him a comfort
partly because I have always found listening to things
relating to Christ and psychology comforting;
I cannot say I was a fully 'normal' child,
as by my teen years I listened to Focus on the Family
(Protestant Christian psychology based discussions
revolving around supporting the family)
and I was still pretty much a kid myself.
Anyway, Fr. Meletios' podcasts and voice I find to be
a comfort.
Another worthy few links:
Another on Fr. Meletios actually - short and worth reading.
I sent this podcast by Fr. Thomas Hopko to a friend
after listening to it myself -
it encouraged both of us.
Thank God the church has given us practical ways to deal
with ourselves and the struggles we face.
Last link of the day (or at least of this blog post!)
This post by Fr. Stephen about how our life can be with Christ
has been coming back to me in these last days -
how we need to be aware of our real state
and being with God in our helplessness.
With the change in weather to grey
the heaviness of various people's suffering
my own uncertain job situation
and intense interview preparations
it has been a huge struggle for me
as of late.
But yet with God it is not impossible.
Read this saying in a email signature,
which sums it up for me:
with faith in Christ all things are possible... but not easy.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

When the waves overwhelm us, hear our cry O God

So my Mom talked with my Aunt whose house burnt down;
lots of shock and exhaustion still;
the piano is still intact
as in standing
but with 5 fire trucks the possibility of it actually working again
(i.e. water damage)
is really questionable.
Their friends are bringing them coffee and lots of Tim Horton's food;
I told my Mom how I remembered
a woman, who has also since died,
bringing coffee to a house where there was an unexpected death;
this is what we do,
we bring coffee, food, timbits
we call the prayer chains,
we listen...
My Mom talked with someone today who
we know whose wife has
stage 4 brain cancer,
listening to him for a good while
as he described how he has done research to find the
best surgeons for his wife,
just to have her around a little longer;
she has been on my prayer list for some time now...
Heard about the tragedy in BC about a young teen's death -
will be bringing these names to church...
I felt overcome by this one
and I have not even lived in BC for some time...
Lord have mercy.
Two people I know this week have been
unexpectedly laid-off from their jobs.
And on and on it goes;
so much tragedy
so much suffering.
Yesterday was
(old calendar)
the feast of the Elevation of the Cross;
I was at liturgy and heard a beautiful homily
that referenced the Romanian Priest
who was imprisoned in Romania under communism,
going through horrific tortures
and that he wrote that all
is explained in the Cross;
all the suffering, sadness, loss, senseless tragedies,
all are taken into
are given meaning by
the moment of the Crucifixion of our Lord Christ.
That Fr. Dumitru was imprisoned for so long,
my spiritual father assured us,
means that he too was intimately acquainted with the Cross.
May the Holy Cross be our hope and strength
when the waters seem to high,
when the waves overwhelm,
when we are stunned, shocked and in grief,
may the Cross be that which supports,
that which saves us.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Job Interview in October

It is official - I have a job interview
(from the phone interview)
on October 7th
in the late hours of the morning.
The job is in Ottawa.
I will be studying lots for this position.
Prayer requested!
Thank you also for your love and prayers for my
Aunt and Uncle.
I am hoping to hear more of how they are doing soon...

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Losing a house

Thinking of my Aunt and Uncle still today.
Above is my Dad's old chair,
blanket and ladybug pillow done by my Oma.
My Opa (Dutch for Grandpa) made intricate finely done
cross stitch pictures
and wood carvings;
One of the cross stitches that
he made is of the martinitoren in Holland.
He made 9 of them,
one for his wife, my Oma,
and then 8 more
one for each of his children.
Now one of my Opa's martinitoren's is gone.
My Mother and I talked about it today,
and how loss is always a call to pray and seek God;
and that all is dust to dust
that we cannot take anything with us.
But still,
it is a loss.
My Uncle built that house over many years;
the builder of the house has lost his house.
Beautiful wood floors, wood paneling,
old dishes
long wood dining table,
wooden wardrobes
things of beauty...
Beauty is in ashes
and the day of the fire
the fire being at night
another one of my Uncles
who lives out West,
was just visiting his sister and brother-in-law,
took detailed pictures of
every room of the house
to show to Oma, his and my Aunt's Mother.
So on my Uncle's camera are the only
pictures they have of the house
and taken the day it burnt.
The house was beautifully made up for
the pictures.
What a blessing to have
and, pragmatic that I am,
I thought of how good it is to have for insurance purposes.
Now of course my Uncle needs to get those pictures downloaded and printed.
So a small mercy already.
I have been so encouraged by the blog comments and emails
assuring of further prayer for them.
(Thank you!)
Winter will be coming soon where they live
so they have a lot of figuring out to do.
My Uncle especially is struggling with the loss of their house;
their barn and vehicles were spared
which is another blessing.
I am blessed to have them in my life;
I have pictures of them on my bookshelf
that I see everyday.
Pictures that now I need to see about getting reprinted
so that they will have a small record left of past days.
I can't imagine losing the pictures
or the computer,
the list goes on...
the Lord is good to us
and I pray that this event will only further salvation
of all involved.
With Job, who lost all but his wife, and all the Saints,
we can praise God saying,
Glory to God for all things!
Glory to Him in the Highest!
Glory to Him in the Heavens
who has come down
in great humility to save us,
Glory to You O God, Glory to You.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Prayer Request

I post this picture as the icons here are
some of my treasured ones.
The Virgin of Pochaiv
blessed last year on the Holy Icon of Pochaiv,
the Blessed Lady Theotokos;
a small icon of St. George which is the first icon I had of St. George
that is from a lovely person in my church
who got the paper print while at Mt. Athos;
the icon of Christ that is a small replica of the one in
my spiritual father's church office;
the big one of my Patron St. Irene, that was in our church basement
at one time;
the one of Dormition that is from Dormition monastery
that I got last Christmas.
I show these as an example of what treasures I would lose
if I lost all my possessions.
My Mother called tonight
which is means something has happened
(I call them daily as I have the good phone plan;
thank God I have parents to call who love me).
My Mom is one of 8 children;
her older sister, my Aunt, who lives in Ontario
in the country a bit in the North,
with her husband, my Uncle,
they lost everything last night
in a fire.
Apparently they were upstairs
smelled smoke
came to the main floor of the house and it was all aflame.
They escaped with a few clothes, my Aunt's purse and Uncle's wallet.
I can't imagine being in the home of your retirement years
(they are upper 60s in age)
all the dishes, all the books, furniture, pictures,
everything is gone.
Please pray for them.
The winter is long in their part of Ontario
and I fear that due to some other circumstances that
they will not be able to have a lot
by way of insurance money.
I know we one day die and part with our belongings
and that detachment is a good thing,
spiritually speaking,
but it is hard to lose all in one night.
And so many things that were made by my Oma,
so many things that made up the memories of their past
and a house that spoke of an assurance for their future.
I am very much like my Aunt,
with many special dishes for teas and dinners.
So if you've known me a while then you understand
a little of what they have lost
(and they had a house, I a small apartment).
Please pray for my Aunt and Uncle;
I pray that as a house once covered them
that now prayer will cover them...
Lord have mercy...

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Looking for the next crumb on the path

Interview over.
It was super basic,
just two questions really.
I will find out within a week or so if I will have a second interview.
(This one would be in person).
I am going to prepare for the potentiality of a second interview
so I can do my best at it.
Please pray if it is the Lord's will that I will get
a second interview!
I know already that they have several candidates
in mind...
Lord have mercy...

Monday, September 20, 2010


I finally got a picture
that somewhat dramatically shows the light
of my lampada
at night.
I am waiting to hear about the interview I flew out for;
waiting to have my other interview tomorrow;
waiting to hear if I get interviews from other applications;
waiting to have time to do more job applications.
This is the in-between time.
In general, as of late, it has been very good time.
I only lose my sense of peace if I start thinking
that I must do one or the other
(i.e. job / city).
God has His timing and His work and His will.
Not to mention a lot of patience
and the gift of time so that I could get to this point of job interviews,
this in-between time.
I have been re-reading parts of the book on
Reading the stories about
St. John of Shanghai and Sans Fransisco
is a great comfort.
I have been realizing in the last while that the reading of books,
such as that of St. John,
is not only of greater value
that reading of others books that I currently own,
but that my anxiety levels are down;
a lot has happened for the good
in my life
since I officially declared war on anxiety
this past April.
I still have more to grow and learn,
but so far what has helped me the most are these things:
a) trips to monasteries for advice, prayer and to be where prayer is happening
b) continued liturgical life and confession as per my spiritual father
c) a really good naturopath who was recommended to me by trustworthy sources
d) making different reading and listening choices.
f) being home in August helped too.
At the same time,
I am still waging war on it.
In the next weeks and months the hope is that I will be
employed again.
This may or may not involve moving.
Either way my routine and life will change
and I know I will feel overwhelmed.
It seems, however, that I have been given some tools
that will help me with what will come.
the point of all decisions is based on seeking Christ
and our salvation.
My choices are made in order to gain peace
and, I pray, to one day be more fully rooted in Christ.
I must say I still feel a bit of apprehension about the interview tomorrow.
No pretending that I do not.
But at the same time
the quietness of today and the memory of the Saints
is a comfort....

Friday, September 17, 2010

Another interview!

I have a phone interview for an Ottawa position
Tuesday afternoon!
I feel like I am on some sort of tilt-a-whirl -
moving or not moving?
which job?
Lord have mercy.
May the Lord's will be done.
Prayers requested!!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

On and on it goes

Life sure can be full of a lot of the same;
looking and waiting...
I have at least 2.5 more weeks of waiting to hear about the job
from what I was told.
It is hard to keep applying to more jobs;
it is inwardly tiring.
One of those days where it feels like everything was begun
but nothing finished.
Making meatloaf
but also Dutch meatball soup
and found out belatedly that I am out of carrots and celery.
Not much to do with soup without these!
Almost done with edit three of a cover letter;
I need to kick it back into gear
as they say.
I have enjoyed all the comments about my Akathist post.
I sent some to a friend who read my post
I LOVE information and resource sharing
and who would not love sharing prayers!!
One of the hardest things about being in the
in-between jobs situation
is that one cannot just go buy whatever they see or want
even when it comes to Orthodox books, Akathists or Icons;
though perhaps for me I should write Especially when
it has to do with these things!
I haven't shown you all the Icon of St. Katherine that I go while
at the monastery yet, have I?!
If you recall I sold some books for cash and the icon was one of the
things I got in return...
Note to self: photograph icon and blog picture.
I hope you are all having a most wonderful end to a day
where you know that God is with you,
no matter what is going on
for you
right now.
Again, if anyone wants an Akathist, please let me know
in the comment box or email me
your request
(see email in last comment tread).
I'm a librarian and I am happy to share.
God is good to us and He is with us.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Collecting of Akathists

I am slowly working on more
job applications.
However most of today was spent getting my house in order again.
When one comes back from vacation and lunges immediately
into huge interview preparations,
the house gets a bit neglected!
I am working on compiling, printing and putting into a binder
all of the Akathists that I have.
I have scoured the Internet for Akathists,
finding a good many here, and here, and here
not to mention the wonderful Akathists
who is the priest who introduced me to Akathists through
preaching on one
while I was worshipping at St. Herman's
in the early days of my journey into the Orthodox Church.
So I have over 60 Akathists so far!
I know, that is a lot.
But I am still missing ones to:
St. Irene of Chrystovolantou
St. Katherine the Great Martyr
St. Barbara the Great Martyr
In time I hope to go to
St. Nectarios Press and get printed copies of prayers that
as well as to St. John of Kronstadt Press,
and this book,
But I cannot spend a lot of money on this right now!
If anyone knows where to find the Akathists I am missing
(esp. if they are freely available)
Please let me know!
I am going to list what I have so far below;
it's a long list so I understand if you don't read it,
but if you are looking for one that I do have
then leave me a comment and we can arrange
for you to have a copy, either a PDF or MS Word document.
I do have in printed form but not in a computer file,
Akathists to:
St. Nicholas and St. George
and the so far 6 Akathists that are in pamplet form
that include
Akathist to Jesus Conqueror of Death by St. Nikolai Velimirovich,
Akathist to the Mother of God Quick to Hear
Akathist to St. Spyridon.
Also I have some canons as well,
but perhaps that is for another post!
Here is what I have as of today:
Elizabeth's List of Akathists:

1. An Akathist Hymn to Almighty God in Times of Sorrow and Depression
2. Akathist to Jesus Light to those in Darkness
3. An Akathist in Praise of God
4. The Akathist Hymn Glory to God for All Things
5. Akathist "Glory to the God who Works Wonders"
6. Akathist to the Divine Passion of Christ
7. Akathist to our Sweetest Jesus Christ
8. Paraklesis to our Lord Jesus Christ
9. Akathist to the Life-bearing Tomb and the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ
10. Akathist to the Spiritual Ladder, the Precious Cross

11. Akathist to our Most Holy Lady, Mother of God
12. Akathist to the Most Holy Theotokos, Daughter of Zion
13. Akathist to the Icon of the Most Holy Theotokos “The Virgin of Pochaiv”
14. Akathist to the Protection of the Theotokos
15. Akathist to the Theotokos Joy of All Who Sorrow
16. Akathist Service to Our Lady of Stika
17. Akathist hymn to the Theotokos during Great Lent
18. The Service of the Great Paraklesis of the Most Holy Theotokos
19. The Service of the Small Paraklesis to the Most Holy Theotokos
20. The Veil of Our Lady Akathistos Hymn
21. Akathist to the Mother of God, Nurturer of children
22. Akathist to the Theotokos, Queen of All
23. Akathist to our Most Holy Lady before Her Icon, The Felixstowe Mother of God.
24. Akathist to the Most Holy Theotokos of the Portal of Iviron, The Portaitissa

25. Akathist to Saints Joachim and Anna
26. Akathist Hymn to the Holy Prophet David King of Israel
27. Akathist Hymn to the Juliana of Lazarevo
28. Akathist BY St. Romanos the Melodist
(2015 edit to #28 as it is one not to him but by him to the Mother of God,
I have had requests over the years for an
 Akathist TO St. Romanos the Melodist, but have not found it).
29. Akathist to St. Tikhon of Moscow
30. Akathist to All Saints of Western Europe
31. Akathist to Holy Father Paisius the Athonite
32. Akathist to our Father among the Saints Chad the Wonderworker
33. Akathist to our father among the Saints Raphael
34. Akathist to our Holy Father Guthlac of Crowland
35. Akathist to St. Ignatius Brianchaninov
36. Akathist to St. Juliana of Lazarevo
37. Akathist to St. Philaret the Merciful
38. Akathist to St. Xenia of Petersberg
39. Akathist to St. Xenia of Petersburg, Interceder for families and those needing employment
40. Akathist to St. Brenden the Voyager
41. Akathist to St. Nectarios
42. Akathist to St. Luke the Surgeon
43. Akathist to the Chinese Martyrs (1900)
44. Canon to Protomartyr Thekla
45. Akathist to St. Panteleimon
46. Akathist to St. Innocent of Moscow, Equal to the Apostles and Enlightener of North America
47. Akathist Hymn to St. Yakov
48. Akathist to St. Michael the Archangel
49. The Service of the Supplicatory Canon to St. Silouan the Athonite
50. The Akathist to St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco
51. Akathist to the Tsar Great Martyr Nicholas Emperor of All Russia
52. Akathist to St. Arseny of Winnipeg
53. Akathist to St. Herman
54. Akathist to St. Herman (by Fr. Lawrence Farely)
55. Akathist for the Repose of Those Who Have Fallen Asleep
56. Akathist to Saint Elizabeth, Grand Dutchess and Passionbearer
57. Akathist to the Martyr Saints of the Boxer Rebellion
58. Akathist to Saint Nilus, Wonderworker of Sora
59. Akathist to our Holy Father Guthlac of Crowland
60. Akathist to the Holy Confessor Alexis of Carpatho-Russia
61. Akathist to St. Nicholas of Myra
62. Akathist to Saints Peter and Paul

Again, if there are others you have that you can share,
please let me know.
The librarian in me is loving this project!
It's called "collection development" in the library world.
Thank God for His mercy in giving us such beautiful prayers.
Glory to God for all things!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Trusting God At Every Step

Found out today that
I did not get the Ottawa job I applied for.
It was library-related
but not as good as the job I just flew out to interview for.
Still, it is not easy as I really love it in Ottawa.
Just being here is a delight to me.
But if God wants me to move away,
I must go.
Tomorrow I will continue job searching
in and outside of Ottawa.
God is good
and I know that He does nothing
that is not for our good and salvation.
This does not mean I am emotionally numb to this process.
I have been waking around 5 AM a lot lately
which I am sure is in part because I may
be moving
and my life is in transition.
This however does not negate God's goodness
and kindhearted mercy.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Thoughts about home

This picture, and the one below it,

are at a relatives house in Michigan.


They have lived on the property and fixed it up over the years.

Someday they will have to leave it, as aging is inevitable.

I am in an unknown yet known place.


I do not yet know what my job future is.


Am I moving? If so, where to?

I still have other applications out there

and will be looking for more,

until God opens the door for a position that seems right to take,

whether it is the one I just interviewed for

or another.


Most who read this blog know that

I love icons.

Almost all of my icons I have gotten over the years

that I have lived in Ottawa.

If I move, God willing all my icons will come safely as well.

Ultimately I will be separated from all things,
as either Christ will return or I will die.
But the idea of having my icons with me if I do have to move,
is a comfort.
It is challenging at times emotionally right now
(though overall I am doing alright)
as I do not know what I am preparing for
(to stay, to leave).
I do know that I am to seek to preserve the peace that
God can give us
in the midst of uncertainty.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Interview Over!

Well it went well!
There are 3 candidates they interviewed.
I will know in 3 or 4 weeks,
hopefully not longer.
My presentation went well;
I felt comfortable;
it is strangely something I don't mind doing, presenting.
My interview went as well as possible,
given my experience, etc.
I can honestly say all the people I met today
(and there were many)
I really liked.
I am very pleased.
Also quite exhausted, though surprisingly not feeling
as traumatized as I thought I would.
for your prayers.
I felt so encouraged by you all,
as well as by other family and friends.
Meanwhile I will have to continue job searching
as nothing is known yet.
Tonight though I get to relax.
Tomorrow I will tour the city and fly back at night.
Now that the interview is over,
I feel eager to get back home,
I think because it was so much effort to stay on top
of everything all day...
I am trying to just live in the present and not
worry about relocating until it
if the Lord wills
May the Lord be praised and may His will be done.
Thanks again everyone, your support really means a lot to me!

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Flying out for Interview tomorrow

My big day is almost here!
My interview day begins at 8 AM and ends at 4:15 PM
(EST 9 AM to 5:15 PM).
Please pray that I will have the strength to concentrate
and be professionally cheerful throughout,
I thank God for His care
and that there are so many praying for me.
I am so blessed...
May God be praised.

Sunday, September 05, 2010


I have been feeling the pressure of my up and coming interview.
To read all the research,
work on my presentation
and do other things
to prepare
is exhausting.
Don't get me wrong - I am really excited for the opportunity.
I just need to do enough research
to really understand what I am presenting.
The day of interview (I have the schedule now)
is from 8 am until 4:15 pm
this Friday.
I have been worried that I am getting a head cold,
esp. as the weather is changing.
But God is so good.
I am so supported by my family, friends, church family;
I could not ask for more
(well other than perhaps not coming down with any sort of illness
this week!).
I have been enjoying Sunday to catch up on some blog reading
of dear blog friends,
but if I am not commenting it is merely due to my
current situation.
Wishing everyone a wonderful and blessed beginning of this week
and a nice Labour day to any who are in countries
that celebrate it.
God is good to us.

Friday, September 03, 2010

I think the interview went well.
Thank you everyone for your prayers
and comments.
I felt supported; thank you.
Now to prepare for the next interview!

I got the interview schedule for next week...

it is intense.

I will be meeting the head of all the libraries by 8:30 in the morning

and presenting to the library staff by 9 am ...

and that is only the beginning --

the day does not end until 4:15 in the afternoon!


Any advice on how to stay 'cool' for a day of meet and greets

a lunch, interviews and presentation

are welcomed.


In someways the day is so intense that I just laugh and want to

go forward and do it well!


Meanwhile, I will be off to the library to research for my presentation.

Prayers of course welcomed,

including that I will have the physical strength to make it through this week

of preparation

(and a possible second interview in Ottawa

for the job I interviewed for today).


God is our hope and strength...

to Him we must look...

Thursday, September 02, 2010


I have my Ottawa interview tomorrow.
I got a lot of good advice today about it.
I am praying that I will be able to communicate confidently
about my skills and experience.
By Saturday I will be preparing for my day-long interview*.
I am looking forward to this weekend and the support that God
provides in the church.
Prayers requested.
*the day long interview is next week Friday