head above water

July 26, 2010

but hopefully will be able to add something this week


Our Lady of Mt. Carmel

July 16, 2010

Today is the memorial of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel.  Many would focus on the giving of the scapular to St. Simon and that is indeed an important aspect.  I also thought of St. Theresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross, and St. Terese of Liseux.  It’s a good day to think of tending the flowers in God’s garden. Wishing a joyous feast day to all Carmelites.

Selective Catching Up – Continued

July 13, 2010

Lots of news, nearly all of which I’ll leave to others. Over at FirstThings, one news item of concern is Kenneth Howell Fired for being Catholic? or at least stating what the Catholic Church teaches – and as a Catholic that he believes in Catholic teaching.  What course was it?  (drumroll)  Introduction to Catholicism! 

Then again, I’ve run into quite an anti-Christian, anti-Catholic streak.  But I’m not surprised. When Catholics and other Christians can’t even get along with each other, it’s not surprising.

7/16 continued:  The Catholic response this week has lessened where I was originally headed, which was towards a discussion of sobornost. Loosely translated, sobornost means unity, but it encompasses much more.  So later, but not in the immediate future.

The blog comments and what I caught on Kresta’s show this week do highlight the importance of insisting on reason in discussions.  Then again, trying to frame Dr. Howell teaching Catholic doctrine in an Introduction to Catholicism class has no basis in rationality.

Our Lady of Combermere

July 8, 2010

This is a story I’ve wanted to link to for quite a while. Then when it was available, everything hit the fan here and I’m just now getting the opportunity to link to The Story of Our Lady of Combermere.

Usually I think of statues as “still lifes,” but the statue of Our Lady of Combermere is movement captured in bronze.  When approaching the statue of Our Lady of Combermere in person, there’s a distinct feeling of being on holy ground.

The online articles of the next Restoration issue might push the above article to not available, but the Madonna House website has a permanent section on Our Lady of Combermere.

A very belated June 22 Cathedral Mass Part 3

July 6, 2010

Better late than never, as the saying goes.  If only for completeness, here is the rest on the June 22 Cathedral Mass:

Yesterday’s description of “difficulty breathing” now sounds weird -at any rate, trying to suppress a constant cough was greatly uncomfortable and I couldn’t wait to take care of it.  I’d weighed my options: sitting in the front, I didn’t think I’d make it to the doors at the back. (As it turned out, there were doors behind me, but I hadn’t noticed them on the way in.)  But there was an alcove past the tabernacle and as soon as Archbishop Dolan finished his homily, I grabbed my water bottle and made a beeline for it.

 The alcove turned out to be the location of two Reconciliation Rooms (so that’s where the confessionals are). Whatever the dry throat/cough/irritated eye was, it disappeared as quickly as it appeared. The problem was that I was now in an awkward position of not being able to return to my seat without creating a distraction. Even worse, my beeline to the nearest place had probably already done so.  So I stayed there. 

If the Creed was said, I missed it. I did hear the cantor sing the responses to the Prayer of the Faithful.  I didn’t understand them as the response was apparently in Spanish. 

I listened to the Eucharistic Prayer, beautifully chanted.  It was also wonderful to hear the full congregation sang the Sanctus in English.  A priest once commented that he found the response of the congregtion edifying.

The Greeting of Peace seemed a good time to slip back into the congregation.  Whether or not there was a Communion hymn, post-Communion was a time of deep silence for me, of awareness of the Presence of the Lord.  Sitting behing the clergy, which has seemed such a faux pas earlier, now in the post-Communion time gave me a sense of surrounding the priests with supportive prayer.

In the two weeks since that Mass, it’s occurred to me that when the priests were in seminary and read the verse of Jesus saying, “Take up your cross and follow me” that none of them expected today’s situation.  It was good to hear of the sacrificial priesthood in the homily.