Friday, October 23, 2009


Claire has been relatively "slow" in learning to speak, while she has quickly learned to walk, dance and climb hills. But the words are starting now, as well as her assertive nature. This is really delightful, but we also feel a slight trepidation! For example, as she tries to put a big piece of bread in her mouth that doesn't fit (she doesn't get biting a piece off yet), Jessica says, "Let me help you. Show Mommy." And she replies, "No!" We have to withhold our laughter so she doesn't think that defiance is OK, but we are laughing on the inside. She tries again, can't get it in, and finally allows Jessica to help her cut it in half.
The only other word she says is "Mama" but this really means "I want." Pointing to various objects out of her reach, she opens and closes her fist saying, "Mama!" That said, her comprehension level is quite high, and it can be surprising at times. Jessica will mention to Scott that she's going to take a shower, and the next thing we know, the bathroom door is slammed shut, from the inside! It's Claire, in the dark, getting ahead of Jessica because she doesn't like it when she's locked out of the bathroom. She has quite a sense of humor.
On the parents' side, Scott has been fighting the flu for about a week now, and he has a lot of catching up to do on his schoolwork, so please pray for him. Jessica has been a real homemaker lately, baking some delicious cookies and bread, and taking care of Scott and Claire. Her ministry at the pre-release center is going very well. Her ESL students are delightful, and her mentee is gaining trust and will hopefully blossom into a confident and achieving young woman. All in all, we are blessed and are filled with the peace that passes understanding, the greatest gift of God.

Friday, September 11, 2009


Tonight I had one of the most moving experiences of my life. Today is Friday, September 11, 2009, 8 years after the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and on the Pentagon. I saw the smoke erupt over the Pentagon as I was leaving the gym that morning at Georgetown University. Today, in my world of metro and work, there was very little remembrance of this day, except for a small flag hanging in the lobby. As Scott and I (and Claire) were driving to the Fresh Anointing prayer meeting, I commented how some people have very deep and personal reactions to this day, and I wish I had more of that. But I had only lived in the U.S. for one year at the time, and I didn't feel the allegiance and pride in this country that grows with time. I had no idea how God was going to answer that desire, this very night.
The prayer meeting was, as usual, wonderful. As soon as we arrived we were enveloped in the joy of the Lord, and we lifted our hands and danced - Claire, too! Toward the end, they have a time of prayer for healing, and Scott was helping. As it was getting late for Claire, I stayed near the door. A couple arrived and said it was their first time. I explained what was going on and the woman mentioned that her husband needed prayer, because he had just returned from Afghanistan. They both received prayer for quite some time. After the prayer meeting was over, I just wanted to thank him, but as I talked to him, I said, "Can I give you a hug?" He got up and I hugged him tight and started to cry. He said it felt good to be thanked, and he was moved, too. I didn't want to let go but I thought it would be inappropriate! He told me he was a "walking wounded" and was recovering. I welcomed him home and told him how blessed I was to have met him. He said he also had felt healing during his prayer, and he was very glad to have come.
Hours later, I am still teary-eyed over this meeting. It is so different to actually meet someone who has left his country and everything he knows to fight for freedom and to be willing to die for it. He represents so many men and women who have done the same thing - real people, flesh and blood.
Thank you, Lord, for this 9/11 I will never forget.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

June Update

So much has happened in the last few months. Claire's grandmother and great-grandmother came to visit us from France for 10 days, and what a good time we had altogether. We visited some sights, but more than anything it was just good family time. While they were here, Claire celebrated her first birthday, or rather WE celebrated her first birthday! She's been taking assisted steps for a while, but now she's starting to walk unassisted, and it is adorable. She walks hesitantly, then starts clapping for herself. I hope to catch it on video soon. Parenting has such priceless moments and we try to enjoy them all.
Jessica is starting to pray and seek God about Claire and raising her to be a godly woman. This seems to come much more naturally to Scott, but for Jessica discipline does not come naturally, so she is learning to be firm - without anger or fear. The issue she is dealing with now is throwing food and drink off the high chair. Claire does not do this when Scott is around, so clearly Jessica needs to learn a thing or two! But praise God, we're not perfect, but we're on our way, and there is no guilt or condemnation for us because we are in Christ Jesus. So we strive to do our best, but perfection is by no means the goal.
We are starting to prepare ourselves for our trip to Spain and France - only 5 weeks away! As daunting as it is to travel with Claire across such a big time difference, we remember that we only have one child, and there are people who travel with many more small children!
The semester has now been over for about 3 weeks, and that has been so good for all of us. We are enjoying our weekends together, not having to fret over any classwork.
Jessica is looking forward to starting mentoring former prisoners at the pre-release center down the street. You can see a link here. Scott has a few things in prospect, including a big grant proposal with the University of Southern California on the charismatic movement around the world, and with a Catholic think tank based out of Catholic University. He is very motivated and excited to start a career as a researcher and fellow. We are declaring this year as the year of God's positioning us in the right places and opening doors no man can close. Check out Revelation 3:7 for Scriptural reference.
Well, we're off to a Lord's Day supper - that a dinner held once a month at the house of someone from our community - Mother of God Community. We are becoming members of the community this June 14. Thank you for your prayers and your updates.

Friday, March 27, 2009

I'm healed!

Well, since this is about the Montgomery's, tonight it's not so much about Claire, but about me - Jessica. Scott and I invited Claire's godmother, Paula, to come over and babysit tonight so that we could have a night out alone. We decided to go to the Fresh Anointing, a Catholic Charismatic prayer group for young adults near Catholic University. I was involved in the leadership team before Claire was born, but I hadn't been back since, and they are now in a new location. So we were running late - 2 trains derailed and it was raining, but we weren't deterred. It was truly a fresh anointing, and it was wonderful to see so many new faces. It looked like the Upper Room, with all these hands lifted up to God in praise and adoration. Toward the end, they had a time of prayer ministry and I quickly went up. Since just a few months after becoming pregnant with Claire, I have suffered from bursitis in my hip, a sort of joint inflammation. At the time, I got a cortisone shot in the area, but after Claire was born it became irritated again as I lifted her up and struggled to recover from the c-section. It had gotten particularly painful in the last few weeks, and I had resolved to go to get another cortisone shot.

But tonight I gave God a chance, and He showed up! A Franciscan seminarian friend of mine, Ron, prayed with such authority over me. My legs were visibly uneven, and as he prayed and I received, I felt my legs balance, and the pain was gone. Completely gone. So praise the Lord! It's not hard for God to heal, it just takes believing that He can and wants to do it. What a blessing it is to live miracles like these every day - some are more manifest than others, and this is one of those times. And then all the people that were praising God from hearing my testimony was awesome.