Monday, April 14, 2014

Two Books I Read in April

1) Swimming with Scapulars. True Confessions of a Young Catholic by Matthew Lickona.

This is a calm and honest account of the spiritual development and struggles of the author. And by the picture inside the book jacket, a hot looking author. Oh wait, do not judge a book by the hotness of the author.

He attended Thomas Aquinas College in California. I was looking at the college's website and noted that there are separate resident halls for male and female. Not only that, a guy can't be hanging out in a girl's dorm and vice versa (unless it's moving day). I think I would have liked being in an environment where there wasn't all that rampant sex under my nose and feeling odd that I wasn't partaking in such. It seems like a safe and wholesome environment at least according to the website.

I recommend this book if you are a Catholic adult or Catholic young adult and need encouragement. It's nice to know you aren't walking alone on the conservative lifestyle road. Read this book if you're curious what it's like to be Catholic these days. This is one man's experience.

2) Prude. Lessons I Learned when my Fiance Filmed Porn by Emily Southwood.

Well, this author bares all in her writing. Yowza. I would be so embarrassed to write about sexual escapades. She wanted to explain to readers that she wasn't a prude. Nope, not a prude. Not even modest. Sure, this book is honest and frank, but in a different way. I wonder if her parents read this book, but maybe the parents are um . . . loose-minded.

Anyway, this "sexually liberated" author was bothered by the fact that she was bothered by the fact her fiance was taping porn stars doing various sexual activities, which is described in the book. Then the sad part was the author became very insecure about her own body. Anyway, she finally admitted to her fiance that she was bothered by his job, and he quit his job.

Well, my reading material is varied.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

March Mix-Up and God's Not Dead

Hi, I resisted the urge to title post this March M ------ because I never went to the big dance.

Anyway, here it goes:

1) Russian Soldiers and Putin, get back into your own country. Russia is big enough! Stop invading other countries and that includes Crimea! Russia, I don't trust you. I never have, and never will. I feel for the people in the Ukraine.

2) I can't even imagine what it's like to lose your beloved on that Malaysian jet. I hope a real person finds the real jet very soon. In the meantime, people, stop throwing trash in the ocean.

3) Went to a memorial service at a Unitarian church. A lady minister said some nice words. I forgot what if anything was said about the afterlife or Heaven as we know it.  Every time I looked at the lady minister I thought of LarryD who stopped blogging.

4) Seraphic Singles blogger AND Meg from the Pierced Hands blog had things to say about leggings.  I think leggings with some skirts especially on little girls are cute and have a purpose. Leggings on grown women without skirts - um - either you're showing up your super skinny body or um grossing some people out. But if it's cold enough for leggings, then why aren't Leggings Wearers wearing socks?

5) Currently unemployed. This time I'm skipping the worry and going straight to God. I feel like praying the rosary a lot. Suddenly it doesn't seem like a chore. Hmm. Go order a beautiful rosary from Becky's Etsy shop Roses for Mary by clicking here: Hoping God changes my life in a big wonderful fantastic way like He did for Stacy Trascanos with wonderful husband, cute children and big wonderful home with cool job offers that don't require much of a commute. Her family update post is about the only I understood on the whole blog. Wait, didn't she once write on an old blog how she didn't like to see lesbian couples holding hands in the park or something like that? I understood that post.

6) I once socialized with a cool lesbian couple. Fun, witty, very kind. No, they didn't hold hands. People are people.

7) Somehow I ended belonging to a book discussion group at a Catholic Worship Center. The deacon said it's not a church, but a worship center to be inclusive. A neighboring synagogue uses the space for its High Holy Day services. We're reading a book about Jesus being Jewish written by Amy-Jill Levine, and there are practicing Jewish people in our group. The deacon likes to show off his knowledge of Hebrew.

8) Sometimes I worry that I'll never get to hold a baby again. When I see more gray hairs, I am repulsed. Then I make a phone call to the salon.

9) Last weekend made the bad decision to see the movie About Last Night. Stupid me. I wasn't all that thrilled with that movie back in the 1980s, and not thrilled with the remake. It's based on the play Sexual Perversity in Chicago by David Mamet. I never saw the play, but maybe he would title it Hooking Up in Chicago if he wrote it today. Or maybe not.

10) Today made the much better decision to meet different friends at the movies. We saw God's Not Dead. Some of it was very simplistic and exaggerated, but it's a movie and needed to make a point. Some of it was meaty, I thought. Anyway, you've seen that kind of ending before, but who cares? It was a Feel Good movie about STANDING UP FOR CHRISTIANITY, and staying true to your beliefs. If you have a precocious jr. high school child, I think he/she would get it. Otherwise, appropriate for teen-agers and above. And guess what??? There is NOTHING embarrassing or shameful about it.

I thought I was going to see Heaven's For Real or something like that. But the teen-age boy in the box office said I meant God's Not Dead. I never heard of that movie! Also, Son of God was playing at the theatre, so I was rather confused about what God movie I was suppose to see. But the teen-age boy was right (hire a teen-ager while they still know everything).

11) I'm not sure I like this trend of putting nail polish on girls. What do you think? It just seems like putting nail polish on girls is part of the whole sexualizing girls while they are still girls. Okay, call me old fashioned. On the other hand (or foot), it's just nail polish. But why do girls feel like they have to embellish their bodies??? I know why I feel that way. But shouldn't girls just live in a world where they are pretty just the way they are? Why don't they feel that way? What am I missing?

12) I have lots of old fashion ideas, but also feel like spray painting my hair pink. Go figure.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

I Wrote Seven Quick Takes Without Meaning To - It Just Happened that Way

1) Little nativity set is still in the break room at work. Some people have brought in some nice plants to place on either side of it. It's a nice little display.

2) Co-worker was very appreciative of his care package. I had a fantastic Valentine's Day at work. I walked in, and there was a bacon donut on my desk. THE BEST. I had a very happy mouth. People really out did themselves for the office potluck.

3) I really like being a Communion Minister. Everyone looks so beautiful when they receive. It doesn't matter the age, the sex, the whatever, everyone looks like a beloved child of God when they're in front of me receiving.

4) I remember the days when people would not receive from an extraordinary minister of communion. You know what, I cannot deconsecrate the Host or the blood of Christ. I can't make it unholy.

5) The group of elderly from the assisted living facility haven't been attending Mass. I'm guessing it's because of the bad weather. With the ice and snow and extreme cold, some people may not make it back to the rest home. Maybe they'll come back in the spring. They aren't the sturdiest bunch, and a strong wind could do them in.

6) It stresses me out when my father insists on going out in bad weather. I wish he would wear a helmet just in case he slips on the ice. He's had a few close calls. His house is very messy, and it looks like a frat house. He does have someone who comes in and cleans, but I was scrubbing things in the kitchen. If my mom or my grandmother were around, they would get on his case for sure. He says men don't see the dirt.

7) Anybody out there doing elder care for their parents?????

Thursday, February 13, 2014

A Different Kind of Crying

I had to take a break at work today because everything was blurry through my teary eyes.

I found out a co-worker is going on medical leave because he has lung cancer. He doesn't look that old at all. No, I don't know if he is or was a smoker because that's not my business. We're all bringing treats, gift cards, etc. to make a care package for him. I hardly know him, but he seems nice. One woman is bringing in a box of valentines tomorrow, so we can each give him a valentine. We'll be like school children again, but we won't be counting the Valentines we receive, but count the ones we give.

It has been a very long time since I cried at work, and back then I would cry or almost cry because mean bosses would yell at me. I would feel horrible because of the evil of People Abusing Their Managerial Powers. Today's near-cry felt different. It was just sadness that a bad thing has happened to a nice person, but evil people aren't involved. It's about people wanting to do kind things. I wish I could cure him or buy him something big and expensive, but all I can do is buy some little things and add to the package. And I can pray. He will know that the people in the cubicles around him do care.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Church of Bones aka Sediec Ossuary

Here is a link to the Catholic church with lots of bones. I suppose if several hundred years from now, my skeleton was hanging in a holy Catholic church adding decoration to the space, I would be cool with it. I do like to decorate.

Church of Bones in Czech Republic

Monday, February 10, 2014

Bones and the Better Blogger

Today a friend showed me pictures to the Church of Bones in the Czech Republic. A better blogger would link to it, or actually insert pictures into a blog post. I'm not that blogger.

Actually, I'm rather impressed with the decorative use of human bones in that church. I know that sounds kind of weird.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Though the Rock is at Times Slippery, The Church Still Stands

When I was in the drugstore yesterday, I noticed the headline of a local newspaper, so I bought it and read the article. A former pastor at my parish has substantiated allegations of abuse against him per the archdiocese. I am not surprised because there was an allusion of abuse last year in the paper. Years before there were certain type of rumors.  It's been almost a decade since this priest served at my parish. My memories of him are good though his theology was a bit loosey goosey. He was very popular, but I think he wanted to please the people and be liked. He was very, very likable. Unfortunately he had this dark side and did very bad things.

Now almost everything I write and think about him has a double entendre' in my mind. I wish it weren't so.

What to think? What to think? What to think? Why do I have to think? I can just remember what I remember.

Current pastor isn't as popular and runs a much tighter ship, but is busy doing the very tough job of trying to get all of us to squeeze through that narrow gate by being disciples of Christ. Many people in the parish don't like being led towards that gate because it's UNCOMFORTABLE. We people are fat with sin. There is so much in the worldly world to give up and give away to truly be Christ-like. Do you know how many WORRIES I myself would have to dump? And that is just the beginning. Many people have the left parish because they haven't gotten their way. I actually respect this current pastor MORE for having a backbone. Yep, sometimes I'm not thrilled with him either, but pastors come and go.

Current pastor will probably take on the difficult job of addressing the matter of the former pastor. He does that. Current pastor has had to, at different times, stand up and address frankly (yet in very careful language because there are always children present) unpleasant events.

Anyway, despite former pastor now on the bad priest list, I am going to try to remember the good he did too, and not concentrate on the weak, bad parts. The communion he served was still Holy Communion. The absolutions he gave during confession were still absolutions. The babies former pastor baptized are still baptized.

I am still Catholic. I am still a member of my parish because the only truly perfect church community is in Heaven.

Oh-former pastor quit the priesthood since he left my parish, just so you know.

I will leave the judging up to God and the court system.

Our parish has been through A LOT (that I haven't even mentioned here), but I think we're getting healthier in a way even if we're smaller. Just think of it as an ongoing renovation. But hasn't that been the story since the beginning of Christianity? Wasn't St. Francis suppose to fix or build the church? Have you read the Acts of the Apostles? Yep, some tough times there with people not always getting along or playing nice. Okay, I need to re-read that book to come up with specific examples.

But here we are! Two thousand and fourteen years after the Birth of Christ, and the Church is STILL on the Rock!

I think this Catholicism thing is a keeper.