Friday, September 23, 2011

Newb Confessional

I will admit that I'm a dork and here's the proof: I couldn't wait to do my first Confession! I was so anxious I think because here I was attending Mass and RCIA every week without this huge dirty cloud of sin and general ickiness hanging over me. Ugh, how could anyone sit behind me during Mass? Could they even see through that swampy mess?

Anyway, the priest and I finally made an appointment so that I could make my first confession. I was smiling going in but once I closed the door and sat in the chair across from the Father, I realized that I was now in a molasses nightmare. A molasses nightmare is where the guy with the chainsaw, jello shots, and baggy pants is chasing you and the atmosphere has turned into thick molasses, filling your nose and brain with sticky goo. The gift of a moveable let alone pliable tongue left me. I lost all sensation of peripheral vision.

Fortunately I had a list of sin hints to help me because I'd pretty much forgotten everything that I absolutely had to confess (except the big one, which the priest already knew about). For you cradle Catholics, let me just tell you that forty odd years (YEARS) of sins is overwhelming. Especially if your motto in your twenties and thirties was to live like you mean and leave an ugly corpse. So I read down the list, alphabetically. Mumbling. I'd say the word, sink a little deeper into my chair, squirm, say another word. I think I might have even confessed to something that was physically impossible.

I have to say that I've read how other people leave the confessional feeling awesome but for me, I've got to get out of the shadow of that little room and into a pew before I start feeling squeaky clean and filled with peace and light. It's the monster who lived under the basement stairs or in the barn at night all over again. I wasn't at all worried about the creepy green and putrefying claws until I turned out the last light and was heading back towards the light in the house or at the top of the stairs. Then I knew with absolute certainty that it was coming for me. I could feel the very tips of those poison-dripping hands reaching for the back of my neck. RUN!

"What's wrong?" Asked Mom as I slid into the safety of the light.

"Hmm? Oh, nothing. Nothing." Breathe.

I love going to confession, so if you're behind me in line, know that I'll be grinning and smiling encouragingly (dork-like) before I go in.

But don't stand too close to the door when I come out, I'll be moving quick.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Can You Change?

From Ezekial 36:24-27

For I will take you from the nations, gather you from all the lands and bring you into your own land. Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Can a Homosexual Become a Heterosexual

I am a moderately active participant in the Apologetics Forum on Catholic Answers Forum. Same sex marriage, homosexuality, masturbation and birth control are all frequent topics over there. One such recent thread was called Can a Homosexual Become a Heterosexual. My friend InSearchofGrace wrote something that then inspired me. Here is her quote and then following my thoughts.


If I have not mentioned it yet in this thread, by God's grace and the individual's motivation, a homosexual can become a heterosexual. For those who are unable to re-orient their sexual attraction away from the same sex and towards the opposite sex, acting on homosexual urges may be sublimated, making for an exquisite offering to God.


Yes, exactly.

I believe that these discussions come about in large part because in the 20th and now 21st century, we came to believe that sex is some sort of inalienable right. Subconsciously it would appear that we as a society believe that if someone is denied "the right to have sex" then that person will (a) explode, (b) die, (c) suffer physical and mental illnesses, and/or (d) become a pedophile. We equate sex with love and love with sex. If someone isn't having sex, then they aren't being loved.

Read many of the posts on this topic on CAF and the sub-text is often just this message. Have you ever noticed how if someone says that they don't watch TV or says they don't a TV, you have this sort of petty "i hate them" kind of thought? Come on, you know what I'm talking about. I think it's the same thing with illicit sex. If you're having or have had or like thinking about illicit sex, then you can't stand the person who rejects illicit sex. You have to bring them down to your level, otherwise, how can you feel good about yourself?

The focus should actually be on God's commandments, God's love sustaining us, and "love others as I have loved you" meaning that the highest form of love is a pure, non-sexual love.

If someone were to ask me how I identify these days, my answer would be simply, "fully compliant with the Catholic Church" because I do not believe that anyone's focus should be on sexuality, it should be on God and being not submissive to God's will, but in full uniformity with God's will. "Thy will be done, and because it is Thy will, it is mine as well."[/QUOTE]

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Down on the Farm

I have fallen well short of my weekly blog post goal. The little 10 acre farm is coming along, the basement has been dug and has walls, three goats (two Saanen does and a little LaMancha/pygmy cross wether), 22 guinea keets, 13 chicks, 2 adult chicken mamas (one to mother each clutch), and 5 juvenile chickens (as yet unsexed) have all taken up residence in the barn. So far, we've collected two eggs, lots of great pictures, knowledge, and a fairly bad case of poison ivy. (Goats love to eat PI, but then when loving on you, spread the oil along with the love.

We've gone to St. Mary's in Derby two Sundays now, as that will be the closest to the farm. St. Mary's has a new priest and he seems very nice, intelligent, sweet, and traditional. What more could you ask for?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Ain't Technology Grand?!

I admit that I am only one or two steps removed from Luddite. Maybe everyone already knows about these really awesome IPhone Apps, but just in case there are others like me...

My favorite IPhone App is Divine Office (Liturgy of the Hours) by Surgeworks (DivineOffice.org). Although Fr. Jim was teaching me to work the Christian Prayer book, and I was getting the hang of it, finding this app was beyond exciting. It automatically updates each day with the invitatory, morning, midday, evening and night prayers as well as the office of readings. and most delightful is that all but the midday prayers have an audio option. The audio option includes the prayers and a hymn.

My new favorite, which I just downloaded and am working with, is the Prayer App, also by Surgeworks. With 2000+ Catholic prayers, you should never be at a loss for an appropriate prayer! The Prayers are indexed and searchable. Once you find one you want to use regularly, you can add it to your favorites. Also includes Catholic Doctrine, Chaplets, Novenas, Rosary and Way of the Cross.

Monday, June 13, 2011

The Lesser of Two Evils

The Lesser of Two Evils

This is an awesome blog from Brother Andre on catholicism.org. It certainly doesn't need any comment from me. Enjoy!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Pentacost

Today is Pentecost. I have officially been a Catholic for fifty days, but it seems like much longer than that! Maybe because I've been thinking of myself as being Catholic for almost 10 months. I am fully and completely in love with Jesus, with the Church, and want only to follow God's will.

It has been a rocky 20 odd years since I fell off the straight and narrow path (ha! pun intended) and into the evil one's camp. Was I fully evil during that time? No, definitely not. But I wasn't moral and I wasn't acting like a child of God. For offending God and for the pain I caused to those dear souls who continued to pray for me, most especially my mother, I am most heartily sorry.

I thank God nearly every day that I didn't die while I was out there living a life of immorality. I praise Him that I, just another prodigal daughter, was able to make it back home. I pray that all of the lost souls, all of those prodigal sons and daughters, will have even a momentary clarity of vision and find the road home. Home to a God who loves us and who calls each of us to be holy.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Prayer After Communion

Before I got "sworn in" to the Catholic Church, I didn't know what to do with myself when everyone else went up for Communion. I found that reciting the prayer for Spiritual Communion was very beneficial.

Then once I became officially Catholic, I wanted to participate as fully and completely with Jesus in the Eucharist as possible. My patron saint is St. Padre Pio and I discovered his Prayer for After Communion. What a blessing!! I strongly encourage everyone--born Catholic, cradle Catholic, Convert, Revert--to pray this after Communion. Try it for 30 days, see what a difference it makes.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Who Are We???

These two stories, from two different states, are examples of just how far we've travelled down the slippery slope of moral decay and decline.

Alameda, California: Firefighters, Police stand by and watch a man drown. http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news%2Flocal%2Feast_bay&id=8161285

Texas: Chief U.S. District Judge Fred Biery issues a ruling that bans prayer at high school graduation; also bans the words "benediction", "invocation",
“join in prayer,” “bow their heads,” “amen,” and “prayer.”
His ruling prohibits anyone from saying, “in [a deity’s name] we pray.” This is all because, according to Biery, the Plaintiff and his parents would "suffer irreperable harm" if any of those words were used. http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/06/02/prayer-prohibited-at-graduation-ceremony

Grace

I realized that I might have left the impression that I believed my transformations were due in whole or part to my own efforts or will. Nothing could be further from the truth. I stand humble and unworthy before God who has given me the gift of His Grace.

From one of my favorite books: "There is nothing in the world more astonishing, no more interesting spectacle, than that afforded by the action of grace upon the soul of a just man. How it transforms him, sustains him, strengthens him and comforts him! How it subdues and governs him exteriorly and interiorly! How it altars his affections, making him love what he formerly abhorred, and abhor what he formerly loved! How strong it makes him in combat! What peace it gives to him!" The Sinner's Guide by Venerable Louis of Granada available from Tan Books.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Oh No!

It turns out that if you sign up for adsense, you have no control over what ads they put on your blog. :( I apologize for any offensive ads that any of my 7 visitors might have seen. SEVEN!!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

on the gay thing

Up until about September of 2010, I identified as a lesbian. Out and proud. Although I hadn't marched in any pride parades since college, I didn't hide who or what I was. Then I discovered the Catholic Church. I say "discovered" because that's really what it was like--finding something you never knew was there.

After much soul-searching, intellectualizing, reading, debating, and trying to find a compromise, I allowed myself to admit that I could not continue to act on my homosexual feelings. I felt God's calling, the pull of Him, that powerfully.

I believe the Church's teachings on these matters, e.g., that having feelings of same-sex attraction is not a sin. Acting on those feelings is a sin. God calls all of us--hetersexual, homosexual and bisexual to chastity according to our state in life. If you are not married, you are called to celibacy. If you are a priest or other religious, you are called to lifelong celibacy. If you never marry, celibacy. If you are married, you are still called to chastity, in that you are required to be faithful to your spouse and all that goes with that.

There isn't anything special about people with SSA. Nothing special, really, about our "cross". I have a friend, we'll call her Bella. Bella is single, over 40, never married, devoutly Catholic. She has never met the one man who would be her future husband. She's still called to refrain from sexual relations. Is her cross lighter than someone who has SSA and is called to refrain from acting on those feelings?

We've allowed ourselves as a society to be drug into the gutter where our be all and end all, our identity, and our very fulfillment is found in sex.

I do NOT choose to allow my sexuality to define me.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Who Am I?

I'm not who I used to be. But maybe I am who I was way back when. Confused? Me too, sometimes. I'm 43, female, an attorney, and a recent convert to Catholicism. I'm also an ex-gay, ex-pagan, ex-"spiritual seeker", ex-liberal. That's a lot of ex's! Visit frequently for posts explaining any/all of the above plus chronicling my experiences as I embrace the Catholic Church.