Monday, July 29, 2013

It's Rocky's birthday and random thoughts

*There's an interesting thread on raising children on Rorate Caeli. Some of it's good. Some of it made me grimace. Parenting is hard and everybody makes mistakes. The trick is to not make the kind of mistakes that will have your kid sitting in a psychiatrist's office 30 years from now.

*It's Rocky's 49th birthday. It is absolutely amazing to me to think that we've spent more years together than we did with our parents. Rocky is the kindest of men. He's always been my number one champion. No matter what, forever and ever, I know Rocky is on my side and has my best interests at heart. He is good to my mother and  gentle and patient with my uncle who has dementia. On top of that, he's still the best looking man in the room no matter where we go. St. Martha, Rocky's patron saint, pray for him.

*One of the worst things a Catholic can do is be miserable all the time. Even when you're right nobody can endure being exposed to dark-as-night levels of despair day in and day out. I've said it before and I'll say it again: The pope is going to do whatever he's going to do. Bishops and priests can let us down and they do but the biggest troublemaker of all is fellow laymen and women.

* Speaking of laymen, who decides who gets to be a public apologist? 

* Do we have to keep doing WYD? If it's so great, where are all the vocations? Someone give me a concrete number of priests who said they answered Our Lord's call because of their experiences at a World Youth Day. I've heard anecdotes that Fr. So and So was inspired at a WYD or that Sr. So and So became a nun because of her weekend away but anecdotes aren't trustworthy. I also know very nice and college educated people who swear that they heard of a Black woman who named her twins Lemonjello and Orangejello. I've heard that story far too many times and every single person who's told it to me over the years swears that the twins were only recently born.  Anecdotes, tall tales, wishing thinking, lies. I want to see some hard facts and figures.

*I was visiting my uncle in the nursing home yesterday and one of his neighbors mentioned to my mother than nobody from the local parish has been there with Communion or to lead the Rosary in weeks. The local Protestant churches manage to have volunteers who come every Sunday and  even during the week to see about the sick and the elderly but the Catholic residents don't want to attend a Protestant service and have had nothing. That's disgusting and it infuriates me.

 Every busybody wants to be on the parish counsel or a Eucharistic Minister (in Church only, no sick calls please) but nobody wants to do the unpleasant stuff. I'm not asking for volunteers to give my uncle a bath, that's what I'm for but I wish I saw Catholic men and women in the nursing homes singing or running a Bingo game or just sitting and talking with a poor soul who hasn't had a visitor in over a month. The ladies from the AME church of the street from my uncle's nursing home come and sit. They bring treats, knitted items and they sing. I often see a Primitive Baptist (no that's not a pejorative, it's the name of the denomination), Deaconess and her teenaged grandson who come to visit.  The Jehovah's Witness men and women somehow find time to listen, pat a hand and pray over an old gray head. Where the heck are my Catholic people?

*Forget Twilight. THIS is a love story.


From a photo from Fr. Lawrence's photo blog.

In a grave they laid thee, O my Life and my Christ: and the armies of the angels were so amazed as they sang the praise of thy submissive love.
O my sweet Lord Jesus, my salvation and my light, how art thou now by a grave and its darkness hid? How unspeakable the mystery of thy love?
From the Lord's Lamentations

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Our Lady of Good Consel-- we need you more than ever!

Litany Of Our Lady of Good Counsel

Lord have mercy on us.
Christ have mercy on us.
Lord have mercy on us.
Christ hear us.
Christ graciously hear us.
God the Father of Heaven,
Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit,
Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God,
Have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, Pray for us.
Holy Mother of God,
Holy Virgin of Virgins,
Mother of Good Counsel,
Daughter of the Heavenly Father,
Mother of the Divine Son,
Spouse of the Holy Spirit,
Temple of the most Holy Trinity,
Dispenser of graces,
Gate of heaven,
Queen of angels,
Honour of patriarchs,
Glory of prophets,
Counsellor of apostles,
Counsellor of martyrs,
Counsellor of confessors,
Counsellor of virgins,
Counsellor of all saints,
Counsellor of the afflicted,
Counsellor of widows and orphans,
Counsellor of the sick,
Counsellor of the sorrowful and of prisoners,
Counsellor of the poor,
Counsellor of the needy,
Counsellor in all dangers,
Counsellor in all temptations,
Counsellor of penitent sinners,
Counsellor of the dying,
In all affairs and necessities, give us Good counsel,
In all doubts and perplexities,
In afflictions and adversities,
In dangers and misfortunes,
In all undertakings and concerns,
In all our needs,
In crosses and sufferings,
In temptations and snares,
In persecution and calumny,
In all wrongs suffered,
In dangers of soul and body,
In all the events of our life,
In sickness and infirmity,
In the hour of death,
Lamb of God, you take away the sins
Of the world, spare us O Lord.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins
of the world, graciously hear us O Lord
Lamb of God, you take away the sins
Of the world, have mercy on us O Lord.
V. In all anxiety and trouble
R. Bring us good counsel, O Blessed
Virgin Mary.
O God the Giver of all good and perfect gifts, let us who seek refuge with Mary obtain in all our wants, troubles and affairs, good counsel, help and assistance for the sake of Jesus Christ your Son. Amen.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Modesty again.

Last week I saw a post on Rorate Caeli about modesty. The comments got stupid. One of the moderators deleted them all.   Say the word "modesty" and people immediately go berserk with complaints or excuses. It's a lot like the responses to contraception posts.    Modesty is not hard. In fact, it takes more work to be sleazy than it does to be normal. Here's something I wrote a while back on the topic:

Yes, I'll say it. Modesty is not hard at all. You don't have to dress like an Amish woman or a Saudi Arabian. If your neckline is too low put on a camisole or add a strip of stretch lace or get out the safety pins. If your pants are too low make sure you have on a tunic, an undershirt or better yet, just skip low-riders altogether. Pants seem to be a blood-in-the-eye subject for some Catholics which is too bad. Simply remember two things: your age and the situation. I don't care how much you exercise, tight jeans and  jeggings make  women over 30, look like Miss Haversham. Lectors  and ladies bringing up the gifts at Mass need to know that when they bow in pants, nine times out of ten, the view from the pews is not a lovely one.

If you wear a mini skirt --- and come on, you shouldn't, then at least wear dark opaque tights with it. If you have to wear shorts stick to Bermudas and capris. There is no legitimate reason to be seen in public in Daisy Dukes.

If you are have dress that lacks a lining and is in a thin material put on a slip. You may scorn slips as old fashioned but that humble little garment  prevents you from having clinging fabric, see-through incidents, and they save you from the cringe inducing moment of when you realize that you've been walking around  unaware that  your dress was hiked up in the back and you've been mooning the town. 

Your underwear should be unseen. There's nothing more to say about that.  A strapless dress doesn't belong in church, (take note brides) and at best not before 8PM. If you must go strapless then it should be a long, very formal dress. As for swimwear you don't need to wear a bag to the beach or pool but there's no legitimate reason for a bikini and certainly no reason to be seen in a thong. Buy a one piece with brief cut legs or a swim dress and you'll be fine in most circles.  Modesty--- of course you can do this. It's easy.


Sunday, July 14, 2013

A modern Divina Pastora painting

Here is a modern version of an Our Lady as Shepherdess painting by Venezuelan artist, Milixa Moron.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Jesus Prayer

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me a sinner.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Blessed Mary Theresa--- someone you should know

The Missionary Sisters of St. Peter Claver  are the daughters of a remarkable woman whom, most of us have never heard of, Blessed Mary Theresa  Ledochowska. She was the daughter of a Polish Count and had a high place at the court of the Emperor but left it all behind for the love of Africans. She fought slavery and provided spiritual and financial assistance to missionaries in Africa. This magnificent warrior for Christ was felled by tuberculosis in 1922. Pope St. Pious X called her "Mother to the Africans." Mary Theresa didn't sit at home whining. She was not a feminist, nor did she go around muttering, "If I was a priest I could ----." She didn't wait for someone to do something. She did it herself for the love of Our Lord, Jesus Christ. Now that's a woman to emulate.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

I alwayst tear up the Catholic Relief Services envelope.

Whenever I come across the Catholic Relief Services envelope in  our monthly collection package I tear it up. This article from Life Site talks about the latest scandal.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Walking the talk...or just playing a game

Last month someone wrote to the Anchoress and asked, "So basically, the ‘orthodox Catholic’ game you all play is just that . . . a game?” Mrs. Scalia and her fans defended her ably and that's not what interests me. What bothers me is that question. Catholics look to the pope, the bishop or the priest and we forget that we ourselves are the greatest source of evangelization or scandal for non Catholics or any Catholic who is in a bad place spiritually and wavering. We Catholics say that matrimony is a sacrament and serious and then we turn around and do cute stuff like this it shows that we are full of it. I don't really blame the young couple. I will bet that the other Catholic members of their families cheered them on. The priest should have put his foot down but it never should have gotten to the point where they thought it was cool to ask him about having Otter as a ring bearer.

P.S. I love dogs. I'm more comfortable with animals than I am with most people but the Altar of God is not a playground or a dog park. C'mon. Don't be a Catholic phony.

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Sunday, July 07, 2013

St. Maria Goretti

"Yes! Yes! For the love of Jesus, I forgive him, and I want him to be with me in Heaven."

Saturday, July 06, 2013

The Good Shepherd and His Mother

St. John Paul II

It's been a long weekend and I think most people are away from home but the reaction to the approaching canonizations of Popes John 23rd and John Paul, II has been pretty subdued. I've seen variations of the "trad's will complain," theme on a number of blog  comment boxes but so far the spicier remarks appear to be coming from a wide spectrum of Catholics, from traditional, to conservative to liberal. 

Except for some people at a site I won't name, nobody has issues with JPII's personal holiness. People are pissed about the one big, undeniable blot on his papacy. I love John Paul, he was the only pope for most of my life. There is a statue of him in my living room. But you can love your papa and still admit that he was not perfectly perfect in every single way.  I'm talking about the pedophile scandal.  The victims are going to protest for the rest of their lives and they have a right to. I don't think any sensible person  expected JPII, desperately sick with Parkinson's to  drag himself to every Satan scented chancery in the world and personally cast out and excommunicate every wicked priest and prelate.  But some of the victims and their champions aren't sensible. They have been completely broken. We must have compassion for these suffering folks. Grunting an explanation of "shut up," and accusing the objector of being a schismatic or just a bad Catholic doesn't help.

If you aren't happy about this canonization, that's okay. If you have mixed emotions, that's okay. We are not called to be delirious with joy over every canonization but we are called to obedience and I trust that the Holy Father has the power to loose and bind on earth and Heaven.

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

His name was Fr. Francois Murad and other random thoughts

*Fr. Francois Murad was murdered in Syria. It was not quick or clean. God bless you, son of St. Francis. Pray for us.

*Civil marriage is dead but we knew that. For the last five or so decades it's been like a zombie shuffling along. It died when the middle class America accepted divorce and contraception.  Our society is like a man who's being slowly poisoned with tiny doses of antifreeze. He's aware that something is off but nothing gets done until he recieves the really big dose that sends him to the hospital or the morgue.
So, what happens now? I hope Christians will take this as a chastisement and readjust our attitudes. First, the bishops need to stop taking Federal money. Second, brides and grooms need to treat a wedding like a sacrament and not a LasVegas review.  Catholics should not get married like pagans do and we ought not discourage our brothers and sisters who can not afford or just don't want the big fat show boat wedding. I remember one engaged woman who after hearing me describe the very simple (three witnesses and one priest in a dark church) way Rocky and I got married, unconsciously curled her lower lip in disgust and backed two steps away from me. She eventually wed like the only child of royalty and was such a bridezilla that I pitied the young man she was involved with.

*This is one of the best things Fr. Rutler ever wrote.

Cardinal John Njue, you absolutely rock!

*"Our Country won't go on forever, if we stay soft as we are now. -Lt. Gen. Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller, USMC