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Who is Concepción Cabrera de Armida (Conchita) and Fr. Félix de Jesús Rougier for you?

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"Conchita shows me that I have no excuse"
Conchita is the one who takes away my excuses.

We are called to be imitators of Christ, and the Father sent His Son to show us how to live. However, I tell myself, it was easy for Christ to avoid sin. I could avoid sin too if I was the Son of God.

We have the Blessed Mother as our model. She was not God, and she lived a life without sin. But, I rationalize, she's the Immaculate Conception. She never even had original sin. Had I never had original sin, I could lead a sinless life also.

We also have the Apostles. They started as weak men of little faith. Through the love of God and the power of the Holy Spirit they became saints. If they can do it, I can do it, right? Wrong, I say. The Apostles walked and talked with Christ here on earth. This gave them an advantage over me, so it was easier for them.

What about the many saints which the Church gives us? All those saints with the beautiful stories of their lives. Surely they can show me that it is possible to be holy, can't they? No, I tell myself. So many of the saints are priests and nuns. Everybody knows it is easier for him or her to be holy. They don't have to deal with kids, work, a spouse, life in the "real" world. Without all those responsibilities, they have plenty of time for prayer. I could be holy if I was a priest, but it's different as a lay person.

And then there is Conchita. Wife, mother, grandmother, a lay person in this "real" world with which I struggle. I try to picture her household. With nine children she must have been incredibly busy. She would have been classified as a soccer mom if she were alive today, and we know how busy soccer moms can be. On top of that, she first loses one child, then her husband died leaving her alone with eight children. I can only imagine her tremendous suffering. She had to continue raising the children while dealing with the emotional loss. And yet, through it all her love of Jesus grows to indescribable heights.

So, what is my excuse? Conchita shows me that I have no excuse.

Jerry Scroggins
Apostleship of the Cross - Houston Center

"She is my model for holiness"
I am American, Anglo, mother of four, grandmother of five. I work as an office manager for a small company. What is Conchita for me? I have been trying to find something very profound to write; but when I think about her and read about her life, it all comes back to the same thing. It sounds so trite, but she is my model for holiness.

When I read from "A Mother's Spiritual Diary", I can feel her holiness, her humility, her deep love for the Lord flowing from the pages. I can only hope and strive for such an intimate relationship with Jesus and complete submission to the will of the Father. She has taken away all my excuses -- I don't have time, I have a husband to care for, grown children and grandchildren to help out, duties at home and at the office. It is such an inspiration to see someone with all the ordinary duties of life and all of the extraordinary sufferings which she experienced, taking up her cross and offering herself totally with Christ.

I know Conchita was chosen for a special mission, and yet, we all have a mission. I pray that I will be able to follow her example, guided by the Holy Spirit, and live my baptismal priesthood. I thank Conchita for being open to God's plan and giving us the gift of the Apostleship of the Cross.

Pat Churchman
Apostleship of the Cross - Houston Center

"It is wonderful, like a trip going back home..."
Growing up as a young boy in a Catholic grammar school being taught by nuns I thrived hearing the heroic and holy stories of the saints and of Christ's birth, passion and death. I heard how Christ suffered for us and how we should offer up everyday, our problems and sufferings to the Father just as He did. These memories were still maintained as I attended a Catholic high school & University. Over the past 30 some odd years these thoughts and memories have not been recharged until I joined the Apostleship of the Cross. It is wonderful, like a trip going back home, hearing of Christ's passion and death and our opportunity to follow in his footsteps.

John Hosty
Apostleship of the Cross -  Houston Center

An appreciation of our faith
Participating in the Apostleship of the Cross's weekly meetings have brought me to a better understanding and appreciation of our faith, of the love of the Father for us, and the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross for our salvation and redemption. He gave up His Life so we could have eternal life!

Lety Hosty
Apostleship of the Cross -  Houston Center

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