It was a tremendous joy to film for EWTN's Life on the Rock recently!!! I have been so touched by the support of those who viewed the show, and was blessed to receive a plethera of encouraging emails... I had to share a few:
"You, your beautiful voice, and holy messages, sharing your intimate stories, touched my heart and soul beyond words! I am a 50 yr convert to the Catholic faith in 2000 and still struggle with issues of love and trust with God. Your personal journey really resonated with my life when I was your age, and even now. I gained much through your presence and witness on the show and pray that God will bless you and your ministry abundantly! Thank you from my heart to yours, in Jesus thru Mary."
"Hi Kara, I saw your interview on EWTN - Life on the Rock. You were wonderful. Your passion and faith in God is inspirational! I bought your new album. Love the Music. God Bless You :-)"
"Praised be Christ, my sister in Christ! This music of yours, sings of a heart so steeped in Christ's unlimited Love, a heart deeply in love with Him from above How is this so? I hear in your voice, the unstoppable power of humility, total obedience to all of Christ and His One Catholic Church. This is the only way for a full flowering of grace for True fulfillment in His face. I pray that you stay true to him. You are truly becoming a saint. We your Catholic brethren benefit from your deep and authentic witness, you help us to grow in holiness. May God greatly bless you may he bind you to His heart like a flower set apart pure in His sight All the days of your life. Pray for us your listeners and let us too pray for you. Cor ad Cor loquitur in Spirutus Sanctus J of Jesus"
"I saw you last night on EWTN. God bless you, Kara for being all that you are for others. Your witness brings me closer to Jesus."
"you are truly a beautiful lady inside and out...watched you on TheRock tonight Sept. 5 and you sure are amazing and oh so blessed take care and God bless you"
"Kara, I just saw you on an Encore of Life on the Rock. You are beautiful and also your voice. You are truly blessed ! I will be purchasing you albums Not to be rude but you are the best singer Life on the Rock has ever had !"
I can only feel humbled and blessed by these words (and I have to laugh at the last one!) Thank you all for believing in me. May God bless all of you abundantly!!
To view this recent episode of the Life on the Rock please click the following link:
God is so good! As I look back on the last few years, and forward to the upcoming months I feel deeply filled with gratitude. It's amazing how He ALWAYS provides for our needs, and remembers every prayer--even long after even we have forgotten the cries of our own hearts.
This summer is filled with excitement for me: beginning with a trip to Anchorage, Alaska for the Alaskan Catholic Youth Conference, where I will be speaking and singing. The best part of all is that my 13 year old brother, Benjamin, will be accompanying me (this is his first big Catholic youth retreat!) I feel so honored to be there, but especially to have time with my little brother to fish, hike and see glaciers and wild life!
Afterwards my family and I will be in the mountains of North Carolina, spending time with my sister, Gaby, who is about to give birth to her third baby boy any day. Then in July two events will mark God's answers to two long awaited prayers!!
I have been so blessed to have traveled much throughout my life, particularly in Europe. I have always LOVED Europe, and have felt a connection with that ancient continent much more than with any place else in the world. One place I had heard lots about but had never been to is a little town called Medjugorje, outside of Croatia. My aunt, cousins (even my father and sister) had traveled to this village many times to witness the grace and presence of the Blessed Mother, who has been appearing there since 1981, but I had never been, although my desire to go there grew stronger and stronger.
Several years ago when I was staying in Germany for World Youth Day with Pope Benedict XVI, I befriended a beautiful young woman named Katerina who had just come from Medjugorje, where she had chosen to go on her honeymoon. She told me something that struck me and stayed with me for years: "Don't worry about how you will get there. Ask Our Lady to bring you, and she will do so in her time." I took her advice and began to pray to our Mother in heaven: please bring me to this place someday! I want to go!
Sometimes we forget our prayers of the past, but God never forgets them. 8 years later I am making a pilgrimage to the place I had asked and prayed to see long ago. And the most miraculous part is how it truly is the Blessed Mother who is bringing me there, who has provided the means for me to go!
That is another story of God's providence, which I will have to write at another time :) But God is good and He is FAITHFUL! I take all of you with me in my heart this summer as I journey to this holy place, and I am excited to share my experience that will be!!
With much love,
So much has happened in these last months for which I am so grateful. After my father passed away almost 4 years ago, I began to pray for a new step-father: someone who would take care of my mother, and would be there for us kids. God is so funny... always at work, answering prayers in ways least expected.
About two years ago I found myself in the adoration chapel every morning, seeing the same strange man sitting across from me. I wondered who he was, and felt like I was coming to know him as I saw him daily, though we never spoke. One morning as I walked out of the chapel he followed me and introduced himself. "Who is this man?" I thought. I gathered that he was new in town and in need of friends, so I asked my mom if we could invite him over for dinner. He fit in with us immediately, and we made a little ritual of having him for dinner each week.
As months passed this man became like a spiritual father to me. He was a safe confidant with whom I could share my joys and struggles, and ask for help and advice. I could feel that he loved me like a daughter or a little sister, and I praised God for bringing such a mentor into my life. As more time passed, I moved into the city and saw less of him, but he continued to have dinner with my mother every Wednesday evening. God is so good, faithful and generous. I so loved this man as a father and thought to myself that he would make the best step-father.
A few months ago my prayer was answered, and he and my mother were married at Sacred Heart Church in Lacombe, Louisiana. What a joy it is to witness God's little miracles... That this man was sent into that chapel perhaps just for me, just for my mom, just for us. Welcome to our family, Mark. You are very much loved and treasured here.
I used to think that I would somehow have to go far and wide to find God and His will for my life. I kept wondering, am I in the right place, at the right time, doing the right thing? Caught up in circumstances, little did I understand that God is all in all, and can be found in, amidst, through and despite all things.
One day in prayer I continued to ask God, "Where are You? And what do I have to do, where do I have to go, to find You?" Immediately I felt a gentle response: "I am with YOU. If you remain where you are, I am with you. If you travel far away, I am with you. I am not in one particular place or thing you have to discover. I am with YOU."
Although for years I had known this in my head, I don't think it had ever really penetrated my heart. It is not difficult to find God. He is right here, in my midst today. Whether I am holding an orphan in Africa or doing laundry in my own home, He is there. Whether I go to help feed the homeless or enjoy a pizza with friends, He is there.
As David proclaims in Psalm 139: "Where can I run from Your love? If I climb to the heavens You are there. If I fly to the sunrise or sail beyond the sea, still I'd find You there."
I'm so thankful to have a God I cannot easily lose or shake. Sometimes to see the face of God all we need to do is look in the mirror and trust that He is looking right back at us.
Today I heard at church one of my favorite Scriptures: Matthew 9: 18-26, about the healing of the woman who had hemorrhaged for twelve years. I have always loved this Gospel, and have meditated upon it repeatedly, touched by the profound faith of this wounded woman who believed with all her heart that if she only touched the hem of Christ's garment she would be healed. Yet today something new struck me about her faith. What did this broken, bleeding woman believe that made Jesus respond, "Your faith has saved you"? I always knew that she must have had faith in His power, His ability to heal. But today I realized that it wasn't necessarily her belief in His power that made her faith great; it was her trust in His mercy.
She was unclean. No one would come near her. Seen as dirty, shameful and disgraceful, she hid herself. Yet she believed that this Jesus was not only powerful; He was good and gracious. She could touch Him and He would not be scandalized by her uncleanliness. He would not avoid her, rebuke her or reject her because she bled. Her faith was so great not merely because she believed in His capability, but more importantly because she believed in His compassion, in His acceptance and embrace. She saw before her a God of mercy, One who would not shun her, and this is precisely what saved her. Her trust, her belief, her faith in His mercy opened the door to allow Christ into the shameful, hidden, broken and wounded places within her. To meet her there, and to set her free.
"Make a joyful duty our sacrifice of praise"
"What return can we make to God except our prayer of grateful praise? Though He needs nothing, He rejoices in this gift of our love."
These words, taken from my morning prayers, struck me very deeply today. What sacrifice is God calling me to make? What is He really asking of me in return for His love? For the last year I have wondered about and wrestled with this question in a particular way. But as I would ask Him again and again, "What do you want of me? What are you calling me to do?" All I would hear was a gentle reply: "I want your heart. I want your trust."
What if the sacrifice I begin to make to God is simply one of genuine praise? A simple act of trust? A true word of gratitude for all that He is, all that He's done, and all that He's allowing in my life today?
Can I begin to simply praise Him in all circumstances? To trust Him, even when I believe that things should be going differently? To thank Him unceasingly? And to proclaim like Job, "The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord" (Job 1:21). This is what I want to make my daily bread, my joyful duty, and my sacrifice of praise.
What does it mean to be a woman of God? Especially in a world that is so restless, loud and overwhelming, so confusing and even disturbing in its endless mixed messages. Countless times I have asked myself, What kind of woman do I truly want to be? What kind of woman am I actually becoming? For we are never stagnant, but ever changing, always moving in one direction or another. In what direction do I slowly move?
In my morning prayer today I felt God calling me to be still, to trust, to receive, to let go. And to simply be with Him. But there's so much I want to do for Him! There's so much I need to do! Do I dare to be still for a morning (or even a moment) amidst a loud, boisterous, pressure-filled society that screams at me to move incessantly, to achieve and to earn my worth?
Yet what kind of woman do I want to become? Not merely, what do I want to do as a woman, but more importantly, what kind of woman to I want to be? What do I want my very presence to speak to others?
That all is well; that God is in control; that He is our Father and we are simply His little children. And that as His children, we really can trust in Him. We really can rely on His goodness. We can surrender. We truly can be still and know that He is God.
I want to be the kind of woman who rests in His embrace, believing that He who has begun a good work in me will be faithful to complete it (Phil. 1:6). That He will let it be done unto me according to His will. And that He will shape me, melt me, and graciously mold me into the woman He has created me to be.