Thursday, April 21, 2011

Easter Fun and blessings!

{long post... consider yourself warned! please read-on though, meaningful post as well}

We have a thing at work called CSN which stands for "Community Service Non-Stop" {which is similar to our motto "Service Non-Stop"}. You know being the philanthropist and humanitarian I am, I had to get in on this.  We raise money for our charities throughout the year by holding many company wide fund raising events.  We are gearing up for our Cancer Society fundraiser and Relay For Life. We kicked the year off by selling raffle tickets to win a Royal Caribbean cruise back in January at our company meeting. It raised over $900!

We are having a "Cake Walk" today and of course le cupcake connoisseur volunteered to make a couple of batches. So I decided they definitely had to be Easter themed {plus best easter themed wins a prize}. I made 2 batches of chocolate cupcakes with creme cheese icing and decided to decorate each batch differently {double chances to win}. I am not a competitor or anything {pssht. nothing gets me fired up like a good competition}.

Cupcake 1
Topped with toasted coconut and speckled M&M eggs. 

 Sorry, you have to see through the blue cake cover. I did not want to take it off as it is difficult to get back on! I used the yellow & turquoise m&m eggs to look like a little birdy nest.

Cupcake 2
Green Icing, Peep Bunnies and M&M eggs. 
 This one did not turn out as planned :\ Too much icing and I don't think I left it in the freezer long enough to harden. They were so heavy that most of them tipped over night in the container and I had to rearrange once I got to work.

oh wells. still Preshhhhhhhh

I love Easter. It makes me think of bunnies and pastels {and Easter baskets loaded with reese's eggs}.

Those things are cute and all but dare not forget the reason for this holiday. Jesus died for all of our sins and on Easter we can celebrate his Resurrection. You {and I} know I am not a perfect person. I have faults. I am a christian. I am a sinner. Constantly working on my relationship with God. I haven't been to confession in 10 years {shudder, forgive me father}.  I am not going to be uber religious or pushy on this blog.  But I like to share faith & feelings.  I am going to attempt to keep the remainder of this post pretty serious {buuut, can't lie that I may or may not throw in a funny or two}.

I use to could talk to you for hours upon end about the scripture {thanks to my education; daily religion class for 10 years, chapel on Wednesday mornings, mass on Friday mornings & Sundays}. Now, I struggle with verses and their meaning.

I have a confession. I told myself I was going to go to Stations of The Cross at least once this Lenten season and I did not. I tried, I really did! But since I don't get off til 5:30 and most stations start at 5 or 5:30... the timing just really did not work out. 

Stations of The Cross also called Way of the Cross or Via Dolorosa {latin and I think this sounds so beautiful espesh the song}  is mainly celebrated by Roman Catholics.  Growing up in a Catholic school, we went to "stations" every Friday during lent. It is a devotional prayer time dedicated to the last hours of Jesus Christ. In Catholic churches if you look around the walls; there are 14 murals or paintings. These each symbolize a station of the cross. The 14 stations include:
1. Jesus is condemned to death
2. Jesus is given his cross
3. Jesus falls for the first time
4. Jesus meets his mother
5. Simon carries the cross
6. Veronica wipes the face of Jesus
7. Jesus falls the second time
8. Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem
9. Jesus falls the third time
10. Jesus is stripped of his garments
11. The Crucifixion
12. Jesus dies on the cross
13. Jesus' body is removed from the cross
14. Jesus is laid in the tomb to rest

Just like any other Catholic service there is a lot of kneeling involved. There are little booklets with responses that you read aloud as a congregation at every station. In school, we use to do "live" stations occasionally, where we acted it out. It got a bit *racy* cause the guy who played Jesus got to go shirtless at one point {cue giggles from sheltered adolescent catholic school kids}. I was always Veronica, the one who wiped the face of Jesus and then sees his face imprinted upon the cloth. So of course I am partial to this station. I am going to use this one as an example of a station...

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we praise you.
All: Because by your holy cross You have redeemed the world.

Jesus, suddenly a woman comes out of the crowd. Her name is Veronica. You can see how she cares for you as she takes a cloth and begins to wipe the blood and sweat from your face. She can't do much, but she offers what little help she can.

As a child, sometimes I know someone could use a little help and understanding. They may be picked on or teased by others, or just sad or lonely. Sometimes I feel bad that others don't step in to help, but I don't help either.

As an adult, I notice the needs around me. Sometimes my own family members crave my attention, and I don't even seem to notice. Sometimes a co-worker, friend, or family member could use help or understanding, but I don't reach out to help lest I be criticized, or that they demand more of me than I'd like to give.

My tender Jesus, Who didst deign to print Thy sacred face upon the cloth with which Veronica wiped the sweat from off Thy brow, print in my soul deep, I pray Thee, the lasting memory of Thy bitter pains.

{insert an Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be}

Leader: Jesus Christ Crucified.
All: Have mercy on Us.
Leader: May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, Rest in peace.
All: Amen.

Everyone be BLESSED this Easter. Maybe I will show off my Easter outfit on Monday :)


Shannon said...

This was very beautiful and refreshing to see. Thank you!

P.S. CUTE cupcakes!! They look yummy...send one to me :) haha

Happy Easter!

Kori said...

Beautiful post honey and I love those cupcakes! Wishing you a dreamy Thursday honey! Kori xoxo

Portuguese Prepster said...

I grew up doing stations of the cross at school as well! It seems strange now being in college and Easter seems just to be another day. Great post.

Jessica said...

This is a great post! We all need to remember from time to time the true meaning of Easter. Great cupcakes by the way! I went to a cupcake decorating class today and I made some very similar to yours! Happy Easter!

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