By: Catherine Amaris Munoz
“Let the wise listen and learn yet more, and a person of discernment will acquire the art of guidance, for perceiving the meaning of proverbs and obscure sayings, the sayings of the sages and their riddles. The fear of God is the beginning of knowledge; fools spurn wisdom and discipline.” ~Proverbs 1:5-7
Hi there, all home-schooling teens! My name is Catherine Munoz. I am a homeschooler from Monrovia, California, USA. I am in the 12th grade. This is my ninth column for the “Homeschooling Teen e-zine”, and I am looking forward to sharing more with you all in the future.
Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! Well, I suppose it’s a couple of weeks too early to say… But as Catholics, my family and I are looking forward to celebrating the day of remembrance for Saint Patrick. On another note, after being unable to write for some time due to my mom’s condition–being in and out of the hospital– I am glad have the opportunity to write this month’s column. As a Christian community, I ask you for your prayers: I believe and know they are what has kept our family afloat, strong, and together. I’ll be sure to keep you and your loved ones in my prayers as well. This is what we are called to do as Christians. Well, what would life be without roadblocks, trials, problems and such? This month has been one of the most challenging months of my entire life’s experiences. Ironically though, those very difficulties have allowed me the ability to grow stronger in faith, trust, responsibility, and love for my family and friends, but most especially, for God. What a blessing it is to know that: 1.) God has planned for us a great future, full of hope and prosperity; 2.) God will never leave our side; and 3.) God is a gracious God who always has our best interest in mind. Basically, He’s like the best gardener in the world, and each one of us are like a flower in His garden. Each requiring a specific need, vital to its survival and growth, the flowers are tended to with perpetual love, the utmost respect, and a gentle hand and voice. This gardener whom I speak of has every good intention for His flowers and He never leaves their side. God bless you and yours! May you recall what a wonderful gardener our God is every time you encounter a flower, or another piece of nature which has been touched by the hand of God.
MUSIC CORNER ~ This month’s featured Christian music artist:
Aaron Shust has a great song which made the charts recently: “Come and Save Us.” As a girl who is currently learning the drums, I like to hear a good beat. This song got my feet tapping! The music sounded like competition for the other secular artists on the radio. But that isn’t surprising, especially since Shust is influenced by U2 and Bob Marley. See for yourself! Check out Aaron Shust @ www.aaronshust.com
MARCH RECIPE ~ “Easy Irish Soda Bread”
“What a great way to tie in the spirit of Saint Patrick’s Day to your family’s meal!”
Yields: approx. 1-1/2 lb. loaf/ Time: approx. 15 minutes for preparation; 50 minutes for baking.
What you’ll need:
4 cups all purpose flour
4 tbs. white or granulated sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup margarine, softened
1 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup buttermilk (separated from other measured buttermilk)
1.) Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease large baking sheet.
2.) In large bowl, mix flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and margarine. Stir in 1 cup buttermilk and egg. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead slightly. Form dough into a round and place on baking sheet. in a small bowl, combine melted butter with 1/4 cup buttermilk; brush loaf with this mixture. Then, use a sharp knife to cut an “x” into the top of the loaf.
3.) Bake in preheated oven for 30- 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. You may continue to brush loaf with the butter mixture while it bakes. Enjoy!
MARCH MOVIE REVIEW ~ “Courageous” (2011)
Fathers play such an influential role in the life of a child… And in the life of a family. Integrity, confidence, inspiration, loyalty, respect, strength, gentleness: these are qualities that Daddies may teach their children. “Courageous” takes the viewers along for a ride of laughter, tears, reflection, forgiveness, and a father’s lessons on love. We learn what matters most: family and God. As a young girl who no longer lives with her dad, this movie deeply affected me. This movie will most likely change the way you see the dads in your life. Perhaps you’ll recognize a dad you know in one of the characters. Perhaps, like me, you’ll simply watch and learn from the story: learn how you can be more “present” in the lives of the children around you. In the movie “Courageous,” we witness the lives of seemingly ordinary fathers be transformed by the power of God: the power of faith, and love. We see how a little change in attitude combined with an attempt to be the best possible parent can turn-around a family, and bring about a life-altering view. The cornerstone of a household is God. And within that home, in order for that goodness to flow and flourish, there must be a solid foundation upon honesty, faith, hope, love, and trust. I pray that the daddies of children that I know may exhibit the qualities that were recognized in these fathers caricatured in “Courageous”. Turmoil will hit a family at some point, sadly: there is no doubt about that. But as “Courageous” reminded me, when the going gets tough, the tough gets going, and it is God who gets the tough going bye-bye! May a home be structured with the wood of Jesus’ cross, and may it be held together by the use of the nails from Jesus’ hand. There is nothing that can’t be healed by the tremendous grace of our Father in heaven. “Courageous” brought tears to my eyes, brought laughter to my heart, and helped me view some “hot topics” differently. I hope you find the opportunity to watch “Courageous”, and with even more hope, may you enjoy seeing it as much as I did.