Posts Tagged 'Mass'

Not The Day I was Hoping For

After having to deal with a cantankerous digestive system at 4 am, I decided that I was still going to 11:30 Mass.  My alarm went off, my digestive system was still grumpy and put off going to Mass to 5:30.  All of this was prejudiced on the state of my digestive system (d.s.) which has been crankier than normal lately.  Got up around 3 and pretty much decided I wasn’t going to Mass.  D.S. was still a bit grumpy but I didn’t want to be rushing for the bathroom that wasn’t at home if I didn’t have to.

So I feel bad about missing Mass.  Could I still have gone even with my cranky d.s.?  Probably, but I didn’t.  Especially in light of the Gospel reading for the day: two songs who said one thing and did another.  I feel like I was the second son who said I was going to Mass but then didn’t go.  In the past, I’ve gone to Mass feeling far worse and even very sick.  I understand it’s okay  to miss if you’re sick but where’s the line?  Upset stomach and digestive system issues don’t seem like a good reason to miss. 

At this point, I don’t think it was a good enough reason to miss.  Like I said, I’ve gone to Mass sicker and even to work in much worse conditions.  Our society sees sickness as a character weakness that just needs to be gotten over or even outright ignored unless it’s very certain conditions.   Many Catholics think and believe the same way, especially if it involves others.

Since I’m going to Confession next weekend anyway, I’ll just confess it.  Better to consider it a sin than find a lame excuse.  Mercy is for other people anyways, not for me.

(And I now know what caused the upset.  Two different issues that just ended up colliding at the same time.)

Some People

In this case, I mean traditionalists.  They just make me so angry especially when they accuse those that attend the OF as being judgmental and closeminded when I find that it is the traditionalists that are so judgemental and arrogant and judge others by their very untenable and unrealistic standards.  If you don’t fit into a very narrow definition of who they define as Catholic, they call that person a modernist and evil and a heretic.  How is that not judgemental?  Or saying that someone that prefets the OF to the EF is stupid and that if you were really Catholic you would only attend the “real” Mass in Latin.  I won’t get into how they think women are the cause of all men’s sins or how women need be dressed in burqas or that all women need to be slaves to their husbands (women are not to be educated by the way; women are only good for being stay at home wives and mothers with no personality or dreams or talents whatsoever).

I’ve heard that if something makes you angry that it means it’s something you need to give into it because you are rebeling and it is something you need to be doing because you know that you need to be doing it but are rebeling and being angry because you want your way instead of God’s way.  For example if being forced to wear a veil causes you to be angry, then you need to be wearing a veil and give in otherwise you are sinning.  This isn’t true.  Anger is a sign that something is wrong, most of the time.  Yes, there are times when feeling anger is inappropriate but that has more to do with the person than the cause of the anger.

I want to go more into this but it is very late and I need sleep.

Bunch of Stuff

Yes, that’s the lame title I came up with.

I had “Depression: In the Trenches” for a post on how I’m dealing with my depression.  One word: horribly.  I’m miserable, crying a lot more, very fed up with work (and with the three idiots I work with), dealing with the fact that not only was I abused emotionally and verbally I was also physically abused through spanking.  I’m not sure I can leave out sexual abuse but most of that stems from not being allowed to have any boundaries.  I wasn’t allowed to bathe alone (my mother was forever coming in and using the toilet when I was showering), not allowed any privacy (my mother was forever going through my things but never my sisters; even as an adult home during summer break from college she would go through my things as would my sisters and they were never punished), and told I was fat and ugly and bought clothes several sizes too big to cover my fat, ugly body.  There was the not being allowed to be sick (getting a cold was tantaumount to sending my mother to hell because I was ruining her life)  which left me seeing getting sick as being weak and useless and learning not to take care of myself.  Then there was the whole “bad girls like me go to Hell” and you better believe that I was on the fast track to hell just because I was me.

I’ve been feeling so bad lately, especially when I work, that I try to focus on getting sleep instead of doing anything else.  At this point, even going to Mass is difficult.  I had been going to a different parish because my geographical parish was just too different from what I needed and I had been there for over ten years.  They’ve gone in a different direction and I wasn’t taken along for the ride.  Granted, I wouldn’t have been taken along anyways because I’m not married or have kids, don’t have family in the parish, and am a single working woman who wants more than just to settle or be pushed to the background though that’s exactly what’s happened.  The “new” parish (I’d been going there for the occasional Mass and for Reconciliation) was good: good homilies, quality music, people understood that babies needed a moment in the narthex to pull themselves together (as much as babies can do that but you get what I mean I hope) and that children were to behave.  Then I went on Sunday after not going the week before (which I needed the sleep since that night the supervisor decided to target me and tried to pull a ship load of crap on me) and wish I hadn’t.  I didn’t sleep well, Mass was hard to sit through (there have been many times that for the first half hour of Mass it takes all my will power not to walk out in tears because I’m trembling and hurting and in tears because I just can’t handle it.  There are probably times when I should have walked out just to preserve my sanity but I didn’t thinking that I was going to end up in Hell for leaving and that there was no valid reason to miss Mass.  I was actually taught that there was no reason AT ALL to miss Mass.  Not even being in the hospital and deathly ill was a good reason.  Since missing Mass was a mortal sin, there was no good reason not to go or to be late (there have been several times when I arrived in the middle of the reading, even once being as late as the Gospel).

I’m not sure I should go to Mass for a while.  I know that I have a moral obligation to attend Mass but when I end up sleep deprived and mentally ill does that matter or am I not allowed to take care of myself?  I’m not allowed to take care of myself, having being taught that others are so much more important than me that if I have to sacrifice my time and health then so be it.  So now that I think taking care of myself is important am I sinning by getting the sleep I need even if it means I have to miss Mass?  I know that in my mental state and upbringing and others would say yes.  God is more important than my health or my job.  Yes, that is the mental thinking I have.  I was taught/learned not to value myself, especially not as a person and not as a woman.  I think, as much as it hurts to write this, that I need to take care of myself and if that means missing Mass for a while, then so be it.  I will suffer the consequences but I need sleep especially working a twelve hour graveyard shift and to help treat my depression.

Then the traddies have been at it again.  At least the thread on what women should wear is gone (yes, there was a whole thread and oh so definitely not the first on the matter on how women needed to dress like an Amish women but in a burqa because men are pigs and if they saw skin they would be led into heinous sin and even rape and beat women even though it’s their fault anyways.  I see a movement even among non-traddies to marginalize and even demonize women.  The Phoenix Cathedral has decided to limit altar serving to boys again.  I don’t have a problem with that.  The problem I DO have is that there are so many people who go “look, see, if they hadn’t allowed girls to serve in the first place we wouldn’t have had to deal with feminism, the sex abuse scandals, few priestly vocations, the OF, Protestants, and Donald Trump’s hair.”  They see women and girls as evil and as the cause of everything that is wrong in the world and in the Church.  They think they are the arbiters of all things Catholic and can dictate what the Church does and does not allow.  They act more Catholic than the Pope.

This post by Br. JR highlights something extremely important about the issue:

There is certainly nothing immoral about female altar servers. Those who claim that it is immoral, scandalous, sacriligeous or evil are sadly mistaken. The Church never endorses evil. It is allowed and therefore, this is not a moral question. It’s a question about liturgical roles, not about morality. It is not a social justice question either. Social justice would mean that someone is being deprived a right. Serving at the altar is not a right.

We have to be very careful not to make it a moral issue or a social justice issue. It is neither. When children hear adults talking about this as a moral issue or a social justice issue, it sends the wrong message to them. It tells them that the Church is wrong, cruel and uncaring, because she does not allow women servers. On the flip side, if children hear us calling female servers a scandal, we’re telling them that the Church endorses scandal and sacrilge. That’s horrible too.

I’m tired of being told that being a woman is bad and that I am the cause of all the problems in the world and if I just dressed in a burqa, was submissive all the time, and permanently pregnant then all the world’s and Church’s ills would be cured.  That’s not how the world will be cured.  It will be by Christ and not us that the world has been saved.  The world isn’t a horrible, evil place that we must avoid at all cost.  It is good but fallen place that contains people who choose to do evil things and to sin rather than to love God.  But people and especially Christians would rather pigeonhole God and others than understand that that doesn’t work.  God doesn’t obey people, people are to obey God.  People would rather make God in their own image rather than be made in God’s own image.

Why do Christians (and yes I include Catholics in this) demonize people who self-identify as homosexual?  They think that homosexual are all about sex and molesting children.  It’s like homosexuals can’t be people, that they are only their sexual organ being used for the wrong purpose.  I’ve seen people (not talking about Westboro Baptist, though they are uniquely fringe and yet there are people who think WB are right) say that homosexuals can’t be saved, that they are really heterosexuals that just need to be “cured,” they are always having sex with multiple partners at a time, that they are going to molest children no matter what, that they should be locked up, that they should even be executed all for having a disordered sexual orientation.  Christians and yes, even Catholics, have advocated these things.  Homosexuals, transgender, transsexual, bisexual, queer are PEOPLE.  They just have an incurable disorder that they have to live with (I know this really simplifies a really complicated issue but I’m trying to point out that they are people not an orientation/self-identification).  They are God’s children as well not just heterosexual people who have sex only to have babies.  Too many Christians, too many Catholics refuse to see that.  I bet if they met a real life LGBTQ person they would act differently (maybe) than what they spout on the Internet though I highly doubt it.

I mention all this because I work with a LGBTQ and that person is extremely professional and good at their job.  I like working with this person.  They don’t talk about their personal, private life or make waves about their lifestyle.  They do the job they were hired for.  I can respect that.  Yet, there are people that think this person shouldn’t even be allowed to work because they might lead somebody into their horribly evil lifestyle and away from Jesus and that all they want is sex.   I don’t get it.  I’ve worked with three LGBTQ people over the years and the only issues I’ve had have been with either their lack of professionalism (they didn’t put very much effort into the job they were doing if they even bothered to show up) or they didn’t take care of their self (one had diabetes and never seemed to care that just a few little things meant they could live a long, healthy life) not their sexual orientation.  They weren’t and aren’t evil people.  Sinners, yes, just like me, but not evil and yes living a sinful lifestyle that had long term consequences but not completely evil minions of Satan (I think Justin Bieber and Katy Perry are more likely).

A song that seems to describe parts of how I’m feeling right now:

(Ignore the fact that it is a NUMB3RS video)

And some Casting Crowns:

 

Signs/Symptoms of a Radical Traditionalist

Having come across so many radical traditionalists in my time on CAF and even one or two in real life, I thought I’d come up with a set of diagnostic criteria for a radical traditionalist, not unlike the diagnostic criteria in the DSM-IV for psychologists and psychiatrists.  This isn’t perfect and I know I probably forgot things but this is what I have so far.

For a diagnosis of Radical Traditionalist, three or more of the following criteria may be met (OB is obscure):

-Believes the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, usually referred to as the Tridentine Latin Mass (TLM) is the only valid form of the Mass.  Everything else is inferior, heretical, or Protestant.

-Holds the 1917 Code of Canon Law above the 1983 Code of Canon Law.

-Believes Latin in the only language of the Catholic Church.  All prayers, private or public, are to be said in Latin.

-Believes God only understands Latin.

-Believes Palestrina and Gregorian chant that is sung by an all male choir is the only form of music, esclesial or secular, allowed.

-Believes the Rosary is the supreme and highest devotion.  It is the only prayer, besides the Mass, that is necessary for salvation.  Believes anyone who does not pray the Rosary is not a Catholic.

-Believes the Ordinary Form of the Mass, normally referred to the Novus Ordo and refuses to use the forms of the Church, in the vernacular is inefficacious, is invalid, does not present a valid Eucharist, is inferior, and Protestant.  Believe people who attend the OF are either Protestants or heretics.

-Believes communion on the tongue while kneeling at a communion rail is the only way to receive the Eucharist.  People who are unable to kneel are deemed irreverent.  Communion in the hand is considered heretic and pagan.

-Believes the apparition of Our Lady of Fatima is the only Marian apparition or at least the highest.   Believed to be the best Marian devotion and the only one worthy of belief.  Believe Catholics who do not believe it, follow what was said, or refuse to acknowledge it are heretics.  Requires automatic believe in this apparition as a criteria as to being a real Catholic.

-Believe Confession is required every week.

-Believe most things are a mortal sin, especially if they say so.

-Believe no woman is allowed anywhere near the sanctuary.  This even means the first pew unless they are a nun/sister praying the Rosary.

-Believe there is a strict dress code for every occasion.  This only applies to women and children.

-Believes women are required to veil at all times.  Mantillas only.  Hats and other forms of headcovering are not allowed.  No hair is allowed to show otherwise a woman will be inciting a man to sin.  She is at fault if a mans sees even one strand of hair.

-Believes women are required to wear dresses or skirts (dresses are the preferred option) down to the floor with full length sleeves and extreme high collars.  The prefered style is fundamentalist Mormon.

-Believes women who dress in pants or skirts above the toe are inciting men to lust and other sexual sins and just asking to be raped.

-Believes women are responsible for men’s sins, especially sexual sins.

-Believes the Church does not go far enough is legislating modesty and dress.  Believes the Church should dictate a strict dress code for everyone that must be strictly adhered to at all times.

-Believes women are to be minimally educated.

-Believes women should never work outside the home.

-Believes no one should go swimming do to the immoral form of dress required.

-Believes women are meant only to be wives and mothers, and occasionally sisters but nothing else.

-Believe Natural Family Planning (NFP) is contraception and goes against God’s will.

-Believes the number of children a couple will have is should be entirely left up to the providence of God.  Any abstinence, NFP, or any other method is contraception and a mortal sin.  A mother’s health, a family’s finances, etc. are irrelevant to family size and having children.

-Believes all children should be homeschooled.  All other forms of schooling are tools of the devil.

-Believes colleges, universities, high schools, elementary schools, public and Catholic are bastions of radical feminism, secular humanism, and atheism.

-Believes sheltering children from every interaction with the world and especially other people will make them strong Catholics.

-Believes TV, radio, movies, computers, and any other media that is not explicitly Catholics is immoral, a tool of the Devil, and never allowed in the home.

-Believes EWTN doesn’t go far enough.

-Believes most Bishops, priests, and Catholics to be outright heretics and have no knowledge of the faith.

-Believe Michael Voris is the second coming and like his in the face style and name calling of bishops and fellow Catholics.

-Believe Colleen Hammond is the go to authority for dress and follow her rules exactly.

-Believes if the book is not the Bible, the Early Church fathers, or one of  a select few writers then the books are immoral and advocating devil worship.

-Believe only young earth creationism.

-Believes they must call all behavior not exactly like theirs a sin and everyone who does not believe like them a heretic.

-Believes they are the only one on the right path to Heaven.  Everyone else, except for a select few, is going to Hell.

-Believes having fun is a sin.

-Believes contemporary music is immoral regardless of the lyrics.  Some classical music by some Catholics composers is acceptable.

-Believes the organ is the only instrument.  All other instruments, regardless of use, is profane.

-Believes that quoting documents from Vatican II is sinful and will only cite pre-Vatican II documents to support their arguments, even if they are off topic or have nothing to do with a topic or are out dated.

-Will ignore, put down, or trash Vatican II.

-Believes happiness and joy are useless and pointless especially in the spiritual life.

-Believes it is necessary to point out every little flaw and mistake a priest makes as necessary to stop liturgical abuse.

-Believes liturgical abuse is extremely rampant in OF/NO parishes and have never existed in EF/TLM parishes.

-Believes the Baltimore Catechism is the only necessary catechism.

-Believe the 1950s were the Golden Era of Catholicism in America.

-Believes the 1960s were the end of the Catholic Church in America.

-Believes Council of Trent trumps Vatican II.

-Wants all Catholics to be exactly like them.

-Believe unity is the sam thing as uniformity.

-Believe the EF/TLM would solve all the problems in the Church, including but not limited to sex abuse by priests, lack of vocations.

-Believe a college education is worthless unless you are going to be a lawyer or a doctor.

-Believe they are the only true Catholics and everyone else is a Protestant heretic.

(OB)-Believe women who dress in pants or in skirts above the toe are guilty for their own rape.

(OB)-Believes all Protestants are going to Hell.

(OB)-Believes Jews were abandoned or are ignored by God.

(OB)-Believe Eastern Catholics and the Orthodox are to be Latinized.

(OB)-Believe that is a person receives any sort of spiritual consolation, you are doing something wrong or are possessed by a demon.

 

This is not an exhaustive list but it does include what I have seen, read, and heard.

Let’s Just Beat People with a Stick, Why Don’t We?

Again, CAF seems to be full of people who would rather smack people down than help lift them up.  There’s a thread on how a “priest was harsh in confession” (harsh? define harsh) plus threads on cafeteria catholicism, soft catholicism, etc. and there are people who are going on about how priests today are weak and that nobody talks about hell and damnation anymore.  There are people advocating holding people from receiving the Eucharist (wow, even Christ isn’t that mean) for months to even years at a time, to arguing that people should have to recite multiple Rosaries, to saying that no priest preaches hell and damnation and that since most people are damned anyways (where does it say God on their drivers license) that people should know what to expect after they die.

I will admit there are people who have no concept of sin let alone their own sin.  But to advocate withholding Sacraments and fire and brimstone teaching deviates way past any truth about the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  Reconciliation is not about the priest hitting the penitent over the head for not being sorry enough or not confessing every sin as if it were mortal sin or for scaring the penitent into fearful obedience.  Reconciliation is about admitting our sins to Jesus and being forgiven, being absolved of our sins, and receiving the grace that comes from that sacrament that grants us the gift of being in a state of grace to receive the Eucharist.  Reconciliation reconciles us with Jesus and strengthens our relationship with him.  It’s not meant as a means of forcing the penitent into doing what the Church expects of him/her.  It’s about repairing a relationship not reinforcing an abusive dictator.

Scaring somebody straight doesn’t work.  They tried that with juvenile delinquents.  Didn’t work and there are studies to prove it.  Yet people want people to be afraid of GOD.  Why?  A fear of God doesn’t mean you obey him out of love. It means you obey him out of fear of punishment.  That’s not a healthy relationship.  As somebody who was raised in a fear filled environment, fear only made me tense and hypervigilant to my mother’s moods and words.  It made me unable to trust people and I definitely don’t understand how to love. I was always afraid that I was doing something wrong or did something or even just breathed funny and my mother would start screaming at me for being a bad girl that’s going to Hell.  Many times it didn’t even need to be something I did.  It could be one of my sisters or something on TV or some imagined slight my mother came up with.  I was going to be screamed at no matter what and there was nothing I could do about it.  To this day I cringe when anybody says my name or I hear a loud noise or people speak in a certain way because I’m expecting to get screamed at for something I did.  Or blamed.  And I know I have to take it because there’s no arguing.  They are right and I am wrong.  Remember, this is conditioned into me from nearly 20 years of abuse.

So I have a hard time accepting that yelling and screaming and making people afraid will get them to cooperate and do good.  Oh, it might work in the short term but eventually, in the long run, it will backfire.  The Bible doesn’t just speak about God’s wrath, which usually happened after several chances to repent and change their ways but also God’s mercy.  Why do people want God’s wrath for everyone else but God’s mercy only for themselves, if that?  There is more justice in God’s mercy and mercy in God’s justice than anything we can conceive.

Why do we have to smack people down and hurt them all in the name of religion?  Jesus didn’t do that.  He criticized the Pharisees but he didn’t hurt them or say they weren’t loved by God.  He did call for them to repent and that the people should listen to them, just not act like them.  Yet people want to condemn people to Hell all for not agreeing with them or not being sorry enough in their eyes or for the priests not smacking the pulpit while preaching hellfire and brimstone and hell and damnation.  Each priest deals with a unique congregation and unique needs specific to that congregation.  Don’t put down priests just because they don’t preach what you want.  They aren’t there to please you.  They are they to be in persona Christi and to offer the Mass, not to satisfy your need to put down others and hold yourself as a superior model of Catholic living, because you aren’t with that attitude.   What the priest may not deal with in public, he may deal with in private.  It is not your place to determine which priests are acting like priests and which aren’t.  They are priests and that is all you need to know.  You are not God.  You have no place to judge for you judge Jesus himself when you judge a priest.

You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.  Just a though.

Dress Code Dictators

So I spend time on Catholic Answers Forums.  While there are a few sub-forums that I don’t visit on purpose or that I am not interested in, the Traditional Catholicism sub-forum is one I read to help understand people who make claims that sound “more Catholic than the Pope” especially about things like dress, Mass preference, etc.  There are times when I wish I didn’t because the sheer gall and hatred and need to dictate other peoples’ lives angers me.  How does someone on the Internet have the right to tell me how to live my life?

This thread really ticks me off because it lays the decline of American society solely at the feet of women and how they dress.  Tell me, when did men get a free pass from sin?  Because, honestly, I see this attitude and these types of posts a lot on CAF, especially in this sub-forum.  Men can’t and don’t have to control themselves because WOMEN are the ones making them sin.  It’s those bad, mean, immodest women who causing men to sin and end up in hell.  BS!  Men make a choice to sin.  They are just as responsible for the decline of American society as women are because some of them dress pretty immodestly too (though that is not the only reason American society is Culture of Death).  So it completely unfair and untrue that if women dressed in dresses and skirts then men wouldn’t sin and society would be pure and wonderful.  Get out of Fantasy Land!  It has never and will never exist.  A world where everyone is virtuous and there is no sin only happened once and look what happened there.

I hate it when people, especially women, dictate what others should wear.  As long as it’s modest, it’s okay to wear jeans and t-shirt, or a skirt, or capris.  Each women will have their own individual style.  They shouldn’t be made to be fashion clones just so a small but horribly vocal group can pat themselves on the back for being the most modest and not causing men to sin and making everyone follow their narrow version of their interpretation of Catholicism while looking down on everyone else for not being as holy and perfect as they are.  You never hear a dress code dictated for men (they also have their own individual style that as long as it is modest is fine).  The Church only calls for modesty, not a strict list of what is and is not allowed.

I’ve also added a New Link to The Catholic Fanatic, a blog about someone who is recovering from the extreme Traditionalists and Dress Code Dictators.

Reality Sets In

With my new schedule at work, I’ve been wanting to update here more often.  So far, that hasn’t happened.  I’ve been so tired from working especially picking up overtime since my relief has been sick a lot lately (we’re all concerned about him) so I’ve been covering some of his shifts.  And don’t know what to post about.  I have ideas but I don’t know how relevant they are, how I feel about posting about them, how well I could write about them, etc.  So I’m going to ramble which I can be rather adept at, usually when it’s not necessary (I’m not much of a talker in real life and especially bad at explaining things.)

Something that has been bothering me is the need of some people to impose their spirituality and their spiritual practices on everyone else.  That their personal devotions are the only devotions that are allowed and should be followed.  I’ve seen people push the Rosary, the Brown Scapular, the Divine Mercy Chaplet, Carmelite or Charismatic spirituality, St. Theresa of Liseux, St. Padre Pio on people usually by saying these private devotions will “cure” everything; that they are the only prayers one needs; that by not conforming they are being “Protestant;” that they have all the answers.  They don’t recognize that each person is unique and prays in the way that they can and that God calls them to pray in the best way for Him to reach that person.  What works for one person may not work for another person.  I don’t feel called to Franciscan spiritual though the Church recognizes it as one of many beneficial spiritualities and the Church doesn’t have a problem with that.  The Church Herself doesn’t adhere to one spirituality and doesn’t require Her children to either because She recognizes that each of us are unique individuals, not automatons.

Yet there are Catholics that believe and demand that there is only one spirituality/devotion that is absolutely necessary, usually the one that the person is trumpeting.  They refuse to acknowledge or accept otherwise.  This is a huge turn off, even detrimental if they want more people to learn about, practice that spirituality or devotion.  If someone is in my face about the Rosary, telling that just by praying it once all my problems will be cured, that everything wrong with me will be healed in a moment, that it’s the only prayer a woman needs, and won’t listen to anything I say, that’s a huge turn off to me.  I’ve had this happen to me and have seen it a lot. I would have a hard time taking this person seriously because even the Church doesn’t say this.  The Church and Jesus himself never said that prayer was magic.  Yet people treat devotions and spiritualities like this which is detrimental to not only the person being encouraged to try a new devotion but also to the devotion/prayer itself.  The Church treats its members as adults yet people like this treat fellow Catholics like stupid children who can’t be trusted to dress themselves.

Faith isn’t a feeling yet this seems to be a big problem for people who go looking for excitement, for entertainment, etc. in the Mass.  I’ve posted here about Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman and the effect that TV, movies, Internet, etc. have on people.  I see this play out in the Mass not only in the Ordinary Form but also in the “young people” who seek out the Extraordinary Form.  Now, not all those who seek out the EF are necessarily looking for entertainment but I believe there are those that do go for ‘the show.”  People my age have been raised almost exclusively on TV, movies, the Internet exploded with us, etc. and that has an effect on how we view our faith.  How much of this is TV’s fault and how much is our fault? And don’t our parents play a role in all this?  People are taught to be entertained, to constantly seek out pleasure, to seek out the latest newest fad, to seek out the pretty lights and flashy clothes.  I’m not trying to denigrate the EF but I am pointing out that people’s reason for seeking out one particular Mass over another is impacted by our  excessive exposure to the media and entertainment and that people need to be aware of this.  If you are looking to get something out of the Mass, you are completely missing the point.  You are at Mass to worship God, not to be entertained by Him.

Why is it if someone hears something questionable in a homily they automatically assume the priest is a heretic?  I’ve seen multiple posts to this effect on a forum I belong to.  Why can’t it be that Father just doesn’t have the innate talent for homilies?  Or that he’s sleep deprived and he’s lucky enough to stay awake long enough to celebrate Mass? Or that he practiced his homily one way but it came out another way and he didn’t realize it until after Mass?  Or that he’s still afraid of public speaking no matter how much prayer and practice he’s said and done?  Or that he’s still a new priest and still learning?  Or that the priest doesn’t and probably won’t put things the same way you do?  People seem to be waiting for the priest to make one teeny tiny mistake so they can pounce on him and denigrate him.  Isn’t the media and the Devil doing enough of that already?  If you denigrate the priesthood, you denigrate Jesus himself.  Maybe you should think twice about what you say about a priest.  Don’t criticize unless the priest asks for constructive criticism otherwise it’s all about putting someone down to puff yourself up and there’s something very, very wrong with that.  It’s called sin.

When did Latin become the only language in the Church?  Considering there are 23 sui juris Churches, only one rite the Latin Rite uses Latin.  Greek, Aramaic, Russian, Arabic, and probably a language or two, at least, that I can’t think of are also used in the Liturgies.  Latin is only applicable to the Latin Rite and even then wasn’t the only language used in the Latin Rite.  The Latin Rite has never been uniform in it’s use of Latin in it’s liturgies.  It’s only with the Council of Trent and the suppression of other rites at that time that Latin really came to dominate the Latin liturgy.  Yet, even Latins still use Greek when we pray Kyrie eleison (Lord, have mercy).  And one does not need to pray in Latin to have their prayers heard or answered.  God’s bigger than that but I still see people saying that we need to pray in Latin and that only prayers said in Latin are “effective.”  Considering God is the one listening and answering prayers, I think He’s the only to judge if praying or not praying in a particular language is necessary for it to be effective.  I’ve only come across Him saying that we need to pray and St. Paul saying to pray without ceasing but nothing about all our prayers need to be in Latin.

All of us are on a journey in our faith.  We each follow the same path using a roadmap that is unique to each of us.  What works for you may not work and probably won’t work for me but that doesn’t mean that you should abandon it because it only applies to you.  God didn’t create clones, He created individuals whom He loves as individuals but also as His children.  God doesn’t pigeon-hole us so don’t pigeon-hole others in their journey and how they live their Catholic faith.  Your eyes should be on Christ.  Don’t take them off Him or you will lose your way.


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