Thursday, November 21, 2013

Comments on The Middle Road

I stopped blogging over a year ago, but feel this may be the best way to answer a blog I read, "The Middle Road"  I will not going to this analyze this post for reasons I will explain later, but I just want to comment on the words.

Discernment on my faith journey often exhaust me.  Many of the arguments spin in my head like a whirlwind of leaves that gather together funneling upward, then break apart falling flat to the ground lifeless.  I must confess that I feel like that most days.  Some spiritual consolation enters my heart and my thoughts are awakened to spin and dance, joyfully celebrating the faith, the Holy Catholic church I am a member of but then, the winds change, breaking apart my microburst of joy leaving me exhausted and spiritually desolate.  Thankfully great saints describe just this type of spiritually activity and how it is to be expected in anyone who is perusing "spiritual perfection".   Okay let me put this out there right now.  Even though I use these words. "Spiritual perfection", I may be the farthest from that.  Farther than anyone who may fall upon this blog.  BUT it is my desire, so let me put it out there.   I AM NOT AN INTELECT.  So criticize, my grammar, my choice of words, and my spiritual knowledge.  If I worried about all of that I would not be writing.  I would be locked up in my room feeling sorry for myself.    Okay, now that I have said that.   Let me continue.   

Let me say right off, my reversion to the faith was a complete gift. I feel I was one person one day and the complete opposite the next.  My priest tells me this usually doesn't happen and that I actually received no merit in this act at all.  Maybe it was an answer to someone's prayers or my prayers.  I really don't know, but I thank God every day for this awesome grace I was given.  Many times in my life I have been asked to take the middle road.   My first true spiritual director told me that maybe I was being asked to "Stand in the GAP" I took these words to my heart and still hold them close.  None of us actually know God's plan for us, but we want to be perfect servants.  Don't we?  So I spend hours and hours meditating on these sort of things. 


Getting back to the post.  I have to say I was allowed to travel both roads.  At the time of spiritual awakening, with my newly recognized faith, I jumped head on into every activity allowed in my parish and the surrounding parishes.  I felt that was what God wanted of me at the time.  My desire to understand His truths was ravenous, and so I went way beyond what I might consider the average Catholic might do.  I spent many sleepless nights reading everything I could get my hands on, and I was a person who never ever read anything.   As I studied more I traveled up the Novus Ordo road and ended up  TRADITIONAL.  I felt really scandalized by what I had been taught for the past forty something years.  That is the only way I can explain the grief I felt. 


I have been trying to follow St. Francis’ rule of 1221.  At one point I contacted different Franciscan priests seeing if any one of them might consider directing a group of people who want to revert to something closer to Saint Francis’ original rule.  More than once I was told I had to stand more in the middle combining the two.  NO, I don’t believe this is physically possible unless a person wants to be torn in two.  I spent many hours and years trying to be just that.  I went to events in my new found parish where the TLM and NO masses are offered.  I saw that people really didn’t pass freely between the two.  Still I tried, I went to the N.O. mass with my mantilla and long skirts and made a few acquaintances.  I continued attending meetings of the SFO and even became the coordinator for the Adoration chapel at my church.   I had a table at the school fall fair that had traditional literature and books hoping that people might have some interest.  NOPE.  I think seeing me is painful to them. ( I look OLD FASHIONED! )  I know that attending those events were painful for me.  We have two different spiritualties.  The differences are greater than the similarities.  I couldn’t figure it out until I started studying documents.  We follow a different catechism whether anyone wants to admit it or not.  What is an absolute no no for us is perfectly allowed for them.  Again let me say I stood in that church for years.  I stood in the sanctuary as cantor and visited the sick as a Eucharistic minister. I loved it all.  The Novus Ordo church made me quite happy and what I thought was fulfilled.  Then I read the documents.  The ones that people don’t read explaining how ministers of Holy Communion should be in extraordinary circumstances.  How special care must be taken when giving communion in the hand.  How Priests hands were consecrated and that is why they were allowed to touch and hold the sacred vessels.  I noticed how the altar servers were all male at the TLM and that if at any time they had to touch the sacred vessels they held them with their surplice.  How if the tabernacle was to be opened a bell would ring and ALL would genuflect.  I saw no of this during my life time going to the Novus Ordo mass. It is not healthy to pray and act a certain way at the TLM and then take off the Mantilla and long skirt and remove all the rules of sacredness.  If and when I questioned why things are so different it created friction.  Even if it was asked in humility.  My story is so long and complicated that I can’t really share it but my conclusion is we have two churches, two theologies, and I think two priesthoods. 

I can’t explain why Our Holy Father teaches the way he teaches.  I do know that when I was in the church he favors I was a grievous sinner and really didn’t understand.  I committed so many sins through what I want to blame on complete ignorance, but really it was probably lack of desire to understand my faith.  I separated myself from grace by my own sinfulness and I couldn’t see my way clear of it.  The happiness I found in the church I attended was only a costume I put on.  I changed myself outwardly but not on the inside.          



Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Changes for the good

I haven't written a post in a very long time.  Please first let me apologise for any pride filled or boastful things I  may have written in the past.  I have been through many changes.  Keith and I have left the Secular Franciscan's and are postulants in the Association of Brothers and Sisters of Penance. The Franciscan's  decided to abandon the rule Francis had given in the year 1221 for Third Order Franciscan's( a truth we were kept from knowing) some time on the 70's.  When this came to my attention, I shared it with Keith,  they would not allow us to follow his rule ,so we were forced to leave them.  Anyway we have started our own association and have been learning how to follow Francis' rule.  I regularly (almost daily) attend the Traditional Latin mass  and have been trying to change from the Christian Prayer book to the Roman Breviary which has the readings that follow theTLM  Roman Missal in accord with the Code of Rubrics, affective Jan., 1961.  I truly believe Francis has brought us to this beautiful Sanctuary.  I pray for the guidance of our Blessed Mother, and I ask that you remember, "Adoramus te Christe, Adoramus te Christe" and look to what the church has always taught.  Look to the saints, to the doctors of the church, what they followed.  What they proclaimed as truth.  What they died for.   Follow them, they will lead you to the fullness of His truth.  I place this blog under the protection of Our Lady of Grace.
pax et bonum.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

All is not black and white

I went to confession tonight, Well, at least I tried to go.  I visited my old parish, the one I belonged to for twenty something years.  The one my kids received their sacraments at.  I have only been formally  away for a little over a year, but it feels like an eternity.  I sat at the bench waiting for the door to open, but nothing.   An old friend came and sat by me and whispered,"It is so good to see you."  Then she told me that Father..... had already left the confessional.  It was about 3:35.  I had remembered that confession ran from 3:00 to 3:45, but if I got in by then he a priest who was not saying that mass would hear my confession.  As I left, the greeter at the door said." It seems to me confession ends at 3:30.  Wow, the only confession besides a private appointment for the entire parish weekly and 30 minutes was more than adequate.  That made me really sad.  I wondered to myself, why did I even try to go there?  Maybe because I thought about the priest and the many confessions I had made with him. Maybe because I prefer to go to confession at least every other week and my confessor  cancelled this week.  I don't really know.  Maybe it was just because I was suppose to see my old friend and feel the warmness that is felt when seeing her.  I don't know.  This church is so different than mine.   I find myself lost in a space somewhere between loving the Traditional church and trying to understand what God wants me to do with all the feelings I have for my OLD church.  I am not really comfortable at the Norvus Ordo mass anymore.  I really like having a priest who is not afraid to teach the truth, with no frills, no jokes,just complete reverence and love.    I know God wants me to bridge my thoughts instead of Loving one and condemning the other.  I find many TLM goers do just that.  I can't.  I love all of these people and know they want to serve God as I want to serve God.  I left the church almost in tears. In my head I was hearing "It is not always Black and White. " When I heard these words in my head, I pictured My priest and Some Benedictine nuns that I know.  I pictured the crisp Black and white conservative  dress, they choose, to me, that represents their traditional thoughts and  actions.  Then I pictured the Franciscan priests in this parish, whom wear a Habit of grey.  Even though  I prefer the first, I can't stop loving and trying to find my place back to this very loud and colorful parish.  I don't want to pray this way, BUT I do want to understand what God wants me to do with all of these thoughts.    For now I hold them all inside where they agitate and sicken  me.     Then I think to myself, " Maybe that is why I prefer BROWN.

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
Where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive.
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.

Friday, April 1, 2011

It's all about the sacrifice

I had to share this thought and see what people thought of it. I was listening about the Pascal Sacrifice today and was reminded that the whole sacrifice of Passover was offering the Blood of the Lamb on their doorpost to save their 1st born son. We have all heard this, but today I put it together with how way back (for the Jews) the first born son was the priest of the family. Something like that. Now If we consider how much the sacrifice was removed from the mass, it may be easier to consider why we have so few priests. Without the blood of the Lamb, the first born sons would be lost. How often do we think only of the sacred meal instead of the fact that Jesus told us He would be the sacrifice.
The daily mass I attend it the Latin Low mass. I noticed that both reading were different than the Norvus Ordo mass today. We read about Moses and Aaron,(Num.20,2.3;6-13)striking the rock twice and the Lord said to them,"Because you were not faithful to shall not lead this community into the land I will give them.
This was Moses! A very faithful servant who doubted and changed what God wanted him to do. He suffered a great punishment. Why should we be any different. He said He was the Lamb of God ......... We must understand that If the Jews offered the lamb and than just ate it, they(their sons) would not have been saved. It had to be complete (blood on the doorpost) for the sacrifice to save them. I sure hope everyone understands the full sacrifice, not just the banquet.
This is what filled my head during holy mass today. I wonder what people thought about in the Norvus Ordo?
no blood sacrifice, no priests

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Continuing with the Holy angels V

From now on evil always assaults good, the devil will assault the angel. But the evil one cannot be victorious. When the good angel fights, he does not rely on his own strength, but upon GOD's: he fights"in the name of GOD", with the divine might and majesty, So the faithful angel next to GOD is the victor, the first creaturely bearer of GOD's Triumph.

In his fall, the dragon and his followers fell to the earth. Again it says in Holy Scriptures,"As soon as the devil found himself thrown down to the earth, he sprang in pursuit of the woman....."and a few lines further"....but the earth came to her rescue; it opened it's mouth and swallowed the river thrown up by the dragon's jaws. Then the dragon was enraged with the woman and went away to make war on the rest of her children, that is, all who obey GOD's commandments and bear witness for JESUS."(Apoc.12:13-17)

Man too, has to stand a test. He is called to respect the will of GOD; he is to defend GOD's law's against the serpent which was hurled upon the earth and who now goes about to corrupt mankind through woman.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Angels IV

Both, however, are the image of GOD; both had to decide freely for GOD or against GOD; for the majesty of GOD is not love alone, but also justice. This justice demanded the free decision of angels and men, in order to judge their worthiness of being GOD,s image. Each of these creatures, angel and man, was tested according to the knowledge and power of will; proper to his nature.

But already the host of the angels had divided itself. Holy Scripture says,"And there was a battle in heaven; Michael and his angels battled with the dragon, and the dragon fought with his angels. And they did not prevail, neither was their place found any more in heaven. And that great dragon was cast down, the ancient serpent, he who is called the devil and Satan, who lead astray the whole world; and 1he was cast down."(Apoc. 12:7-9)

Here something new occurs: creature fights against creature. It is not the Lord GOD who single-handedly throws the rebellious angels into the depths. He let the faithful angels fight the unfaithful ones. The great oppositions begin: the adversary places himself against GOD.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

A gift of the Angels III

The angels are sent from God to man, for angels existed before man. The angels are the first creatures of GOD. In Scripture it says," In the beginning God created heaven and earth."(Gen.1:1) GOD created heaven first, i.e. the spiritual creatures together with their dwelling place, the spiritual, supernatural heaven (for the earthly sky which men call "heaven" was created only later.-Gen.1:8). And then GOD created the earth, the material creation. Lastly He created man. So at the beginning of all creation we meet the image of GOD, the angel- and at the conclusion of creation we find the image of God, man.
But the angels and men are quite different. The angel is pure spirit; his entire nature is immortal. Man consists of an immortal, spiritual soul and a mortal, material body. So one may say: the angel is ordered more towards GOD the SPIRIT while man is ordered more towards GOD the SON, the WORD,and the Son of Man JESUS CHRIST. The angel is not subject to growth and decline; however, is subject to his material nature in his"becoming" and "passing away")
Taken from: O Angel Of God My Gardian Dear... National center for Padre Pio
Barto, PA