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Sunday 14 July 2013

Supertradmum without Daily Mass

I do go, however, to clarify, but if I do not....

I write because I love

Writers frequently have someone in mind when they write-an audience determines one's style and vocabulary. Some writers write for a select group. Some writers write with one person in mind.

I get asked many questions via comments and email. I write some things for those specific people who ask those questions. But, many times, I write for those I love particularly. You may be one of those who are reading right now. I love my readers and I pray for you all.  Love is the reason for action. Love is the energy for action. Love is the goal for all posts.

I have one small thing in common with Pope Francis. While I was in college and grad school, I always put the motto of the Jesuits inside my books, as all my studies were for the Greater Glory of God.  So is this humble blog.

Bye again for awhile.

On Meeting Angels

Twice I have met people who may not have been people but angels. I know this sounds odd, but we do have such an encounter in the Book of Tobit and the fruit of such meetings determines truth.

The first was last October, when I was staying in the monastery. A nun who was the superior of her order came to stay in my hall on a silent retreat. I was instructed not to speak with her, which was fine, as I was being obedient, quiet, and not inclined to speak with guests.

I shall not give all the very interesting details, but after 24 hours, she came to me and said she was at the monastery for me, and that she would speak with me daily. As I was getting no feedback at the time, I was delighted but puzzled.

After the ten days, much advice and counselling from her experience as a superior, and after many prayers for me, plus notes and letters, she left. She had a sense of humour and at least once, we had a great laugh.

She did not want me to join that order. She gave me a book she just happened to have about a priest whose ministry is writing.

When I finally left the convent, I phoned the order where she was superior. I phoned two of their houses. The order has no such sister of that name and no superior of that name.

I had a hard time understanding this. I began to review her contacts with me. She never ate or drank anything in front of me. She only talked of sensible and pastoral things, such as me getting more sleep and not pushing myself. She also taught me how to approach God in Adoration. She also gave me two cards with angels on them.

I think she was an angel.

Today, I may have had another encounter with an angel. I went to a local coffee house for an iced chai, which for some reason I was craving. I sat outside and an Irishman started talking to me.

He talked sense about everything political, obviously being a real Catholic, not a socialist, and one who could see the signs of the times. He was the first older Irishman bar one I have met who understands the way of the world. And, he told me Ireland has lost her identity, which was the point of two of my recent posts, here and on another blog.

But, what was so strange were two comments he made to me. I asked him what his job was and his reply was this."If I told you my job, I would no longer have it." So, naturally, I asked him if he worked for the government, and he said no very strongly.

I was puzzled, as this man, who told me he grew up in the country, who does not have a computer or never goes on the internet (amazing) could hold a 45 minute conversation on all the levels of moral decay, political ruin, and such in Ireland and the EU in detail. He was very strong against Masonic influence here. He was some type of genius outside the box.

But, then, a second strange statement came with his strong country accent-"Good luck on your journey." I said I was not going anywhere for several months. But, he repeated it "Good luck on your journey".

Now, I suppose angels do not believe in luck, but they do act like normal people, as did Raphael, in the above book, who basically "lied" to Tobit about who he was-one of his first cousins once removed or something.

But, what journey did this person mean today?  I went back and thought about the strange encounter.

Bingo! My journey towards perfection. I have been bogged down in the awareness of sinful inclinations and whether I was too evil for God to answer my prayers. I have been in darkness for weeks. My "angel" was underlining something said to me in Confession this morning as well. God is in charge and His Divine Providence guides every prayer. All of our desires and prayers are in His Will, if we are allowing Him to guide us. We must persist in prayer and on the journey to perfection, even though we cannot see a thing, either physical or spiritual. Also, what happens around us is there to help us on our way.

We pray in the Will of God and act in the Will of God daily, if this is our desire and if we are willing to undergo purification. The outcome of this discussion was the welling up of the awareness of God's particular love for me.

I am so fortunate as to have found a holy, wonderful confessor as well. What a treat. He understands the journey of perfection, which is rare for priests.

I am fortunate that God encouraged me over chilled chai.  The handshake of this man was so strong I could hardly believe it. One never knows when one is entertained or entertaining angels.

I needed this little encouragement. By the way, this person had such a sense of humour, I was laughing off and on. He told me that the only two places which were the real Ireland were Dublin and Cork. He knew Cobh. He said all the rest was grass and wind.

He also said that the Irish say that  further west one travels in Ireland, the more one understands why the Wise Men came from the East.

Now, I am much more peaceful on my journey today after this odd encounter. I have been encouraged in my world view, to see the end of Western Civ and the downfall of Europe, which he prophesied, as part of God's Providence, and that good will come out of ruin. He also said all the countries would go back to being separate in order to find themselves....I think this is true. He knew all about the current corruptions of Europe and America.

He also said, (what we know on this blog), that the evil has come from poor Catholic education, bad priests, and evil politicians, as well as the greed of the banks.  He noted that he never used credit cards and was not in debt. (I do not use credit cards and I have no debt.) This person said that now the Irish judge people by a price tag and that everyone has one-in the mind of the secularist. He said that Ireland was now a police-state and that people had lost their independence. My observations have been supported.

I do not know, but anyone today who is completely au fait and never on line must be inspired. He quoted a book, one from the 1940s, which I shall look up.

Odd encounter of a second kind. No third. I forgot another one in Malta. For another day....

Great Video on Vatican II from Voris Interview with Bishop Schneider

Wow! England Wins!

England wins First Test Match of the 2013 Ashes with a DRS-technological umpire decides. Fantastic Match with great cricket on both sides.  All down to a hot spot! England won by 14 runs.

God Is Good and Thoughts on Order

Two weeks ago, I honestly thought I had to give up blogging. But, a rhythm for my life, which I thought could not happen so quickly, is emerging. I can pray for so many hours of the day, blog and twitter, save some days for creative writing, and still obey the call within me.

I had spiritual advice as well as practical advice, and the simplification of my life is falling into place. 

The key is daily Mass. For months, where I was living in Kent, I could not get to daily Mass. Then, as I was ill for such a long time, I could not get to daily Mass. 

The second key to the order of my day is following as many of the Liturgical Hours as possible. For some reason, more than any other type of prayer, this has been my need. I still miss being with the nuns, but I can be with them in spirit when praying parts of the Divine Office. 

Thirdly, I still follow the work and pray routine of Benedict, which I have interiorized. This order allows me to do physical labor and pray and write and  do my Lectio Divina.

But, the biggest freedom is that I am spending most of the day in complete silence. I choose this freely.

Writing and tweeting are communications which are as demanding as speech. In silence is my strength.

And, one sins less in silence, believe me.

So, the key is choosing priorities. I cannot blog every day, as that dissipates creative wriitng energies. But, Sunday is fine for this type of writing.

Thank you all who have been praying for me. It is interesting, but so many of you still were asking me questions to answer about Church teaching even when I was not blogging, that my time was still taken up. But, this is a good. So ask away.

As I mentioned before, there are many blogs which are covering what I have or will cover. I do not need to write about so many things.

God is good, and He orders our lives, if we let Him. But, we must be disciplined. 

Meditation on Death by St. Francis de Sales

FIFTH MEDITATION from The Devout Life by St. Francis de Sales.
Of Death. Preparation.
1. PLACE yourself in the Presence of God. 2. Ask His Grace. 3. Suppose yourself to be
on your deathbed, in the last extremity, without the smallest hope of recovery.
1. Consider the uncertainty as to the day of your death. One day your soul will quit this
body—will it be in summer or winter? in town or country? by day or by night? will it be
suddenly or with warning? will it be owing to sickness or an accident? will you have time
to make your last confession or not? will your confessor or spiritual father be at hand or
will he not? Alas, of all these things we know absolutely nothing: all that we do know is that
die we shall, and for the most part sooner than we expect.
2. Consider that then the world is at end as far as you are concerned, there will be no
more of it for you, it will be altogether overthrown for you, since all pleasures, vanities,
worldly joys, empty delights will be as a mere fantastic vision to you. Woe is me, for what
mere trifles and unrealities I have ventured to offend my God? Then you will see that what
we preferred to Him was nought. But, on the other hand, all devotion and good works will
then seem so precious and so sweet:—Why did I not tread that pleasant path? Then what
you thought to be little sins will look like huge mountains, and your devotion will seem but
a very little thing.
3. Consider the universal farewell which your soul will take of this world. It will say
farewell to riches, pleasures, and idle companions; to amusements and pastimes, to friends
and neighbours, to husband, wife and child, in short to all creation. And lastly it will say
farewell to its own body, which it will leave pale and cold, to become repulsive in decay.
4. Consider how the survivors will hasten to put that body away, and hide it beneath
the earth—and then the world will scarce give you another thought, or remember you, any
more than you have done to those already gone. “God rest his soul!” men will say, and that
is all. O death, how pitiless, how hard thou art!
5. Consider that when it quits the body the soul must go at once to the right hand or
the left. To which will your soul go? what side will it take? none other, be sure, than that to
which it had voluntarily drawn while yet in this world.
Affections and Resolutions.
1. Pray to God, and throw yourself into His Arms. O Lord, be Thou my stay in that day
of anguish! May that hour be blessed and favourable to me, if all the rest of my life be full
of sadness and trial.
2. Despise the world. Forasmuch as I know not the hour in which I must quit the world,
I will not grow fond of it. O dear friends, beloved ones of my heart, be content that I cleave
.to you only with a holy friendship which may last for ever; why should I cling to you with
a tie which must needs be broken?
I will prepare for the hour of death and take every precaution for its peaceful arrival; I
will thoroughly examine into the state of my conscience, and put in order whatever is
Thank God for inspiring you with these resolutions: offer them to His Majesty: intreat
Him anew to grant you a happy death by the Merits of His Dear Son’s Death. Ask the
prayers of the Blessed Virgin and the Saints. OUR FATHER, etc.
Gather a bouquet of myrrh

Birds at Midnight

It is Sunday and I shall blog on Sundays. I also will write on Sundays things which will be posted during the week. That is how things will appear during the week. If anything is horribly important, I may share, but Sunday is blog day.

However, today I am so sad, I can hardly speak or write.

The sounds of the seagulls, even past one in the morning remind me of a day I was walking in the Michigan Dunes National Park before it was built up. I was grieving about someone and the seagulls mirrored my distress. Their plaintiff calls and the odd, almost unnatural dunes made me feel a lack of ease and yet, a oneness with the landscape. Love had disappeared from my life rather suddenly and I wanted the wind, waves and gulls to comfort me. I also visited the Dunes at Michigan City, Indiana, and the Indiana Dunes State Park. Only two of us walked over the white sands, which would probably be impossible to experience today. We were both wrapped in silence, for reasons of our own. Love was disappearing from our lives.

Love is disappearing from the world quickly, because lust is taking over the hearts and souls of men and women. Lust for power, lust for money, lust for sexual pleasure and lust for death have taken hold of so many young people that I can hardly understand myself how evil has flourished in so short a time.

But, we have two generations of people raised without a moral framework. We have two generations of people raised in households where life centred around their needs and desires. These two generations have no way to judge their own actions.

I live near a mosque and have been listening through my window to the prayers of Ramadan. It is so strange to live in Ireland and daily meet people from Asian countries, Middle Eastern countries and EU countries. None of my friends here in Dublin are Irish. Why?

For several reasons, one being that those my age are missing from Church. Most of the people are either my parents' ages or my son's age. It is weird to be almost the only person in a congregation who is a baby boomer.

It is also weird to be a pro-life woman surrounded by hateful, anti-life women and men. The gentility of the Irish is gone, replaced by a harshness, a cold heartedness which only see profit or status as important.

I am living among the dead, as the Irish have lost their identity, and when one loses one's identity, something dies.

There are no song birds where I am staying only seagulls and other sea birds. The night of the vote, because the city was alive with lights and traffic, and I was up watching the vote on the telly, these strange birds screeched and complained until the wee hours of the morning. It was almost as if Nature herself was grieved at the vote for abortion. It was as if the birds were calling out to their Maker for understanding. One small island had given itself over to the greatest sin of our times.

I pass the cafes and shops. I see thousands of young people and middle-aged people shopping, buying in the stores which are having huge sales as the economy is so bad. But, I am shocked. There is nothing worth having here-no class, no beauty. No one is upset.

The Prince of Darkness has a temporary victory. This fallen angel will bring down as many people as he can with him as he hates God and goodness and himself.

He does not care how people choose to go to hell, just that they do.

Only fourteen people voted against the bill because they were against abortion. Another 17 or so were either seeing the bill as not going far enough, and some, possibly pro-life without stating that openly. I do not know the numbers.

The rudeness of the Dail during the debates and votes for the amendments was shocking.

Gentility is dead.

The Irish can no longer say that they have a spiritual superiority over the English, whom they hate so much. They have sold their own country "down river", as we say in Iowa.

One can try and divert one's attention for a short while, but the reality of evil is so palpable that one cannot escape it. As Yeats wrote,

Out of Ireland have we come, great hatred, little room, maimed us at the start. 
I carry from my mother's womb a fanatic heart.

I wanted to go to Malta, but could not arrange things there at this time.  Time before last, two times ago, I had to stay in a bed and breakfast, as my rooms in a flat were not ready. It turned out to be a B and B for homosexual men, orgies included. That was the same week as the uprising of anarchists in Rome, and the following week. These things were brought to my attention for a reason. I talked with the homosexuals and had Masses said for two of them, one who is famous on the island,  By accident, because God wanted me to know this, I stumbled across homosexual porn sites in Malta on the net. I shall not describe these. They are legal. In my first two weeks on the island, God showed me the depth of the evil which had taken over His sacred spaces. Where St. Paul had healed and preached, subcultures of death were rising out of the deep pits of selfishness and sin.

Our world is not the outer world any more, but the interior world. I, and you, must strengthen our souls for this coming onslaught of evil which will try and wipe the Church off the face of the Earth. This will not happen.

We have the promise of Christ that the Church will endure until His Coming. But, I, for one, despite years of knowledge and experience of personal persecutions, am still not holy enough for the final battles.  But, Our Good Lord also told us these things would happen. I have had no doubt for a long time we shall be marginalized, fined, hated, simply because Satan hates the one, true, holy and Catholic Church-the Bride of Christ.

I pray for final perseverance. I am not so prideful as to think I can withstand certain pains. However, one learns to be patience and accept what Christ Himself freely accepted-the hatred of those who hate the Truth.

I encountered three young men who, after some discussion, revealed a great hatred for Revelation, objective truth, and even goodness. Two became rude to me, simply because I could not agree with their utilitarian view of life. Utilitarianism is the straw which those who rely on science and technology for meaning cling to in the face of desperation. However, I did have to endure great rudeness, which I pointed out to them, was a result of their lack of a love of religion, philosophy and what I called the liberal arts, which makes men free.

I was criticized for being religious. I was criticized for thinking that beauty and gentility were greater than technological advances.

They hated me and showed it. Why? Simply because I did not agree with them. Hatred of the truth cannot abide the confidence of Reason and Faith.

It hurts to be hated and being treated rudely, but this is nothing compared with the hatred which while try and destroy all light.

As I write in the dark in the wee hours of the morning, the sounds of the city are slowly dying to a low rumble. Dublin is tired for the night. And the new day has not yet dawned. Young people are having a party next door and the girls are very loud. It is going on two. The sound of champagne corks challenges the dying sounds of the city. Celebration seems out of place tonight.

Will there ever be real light, the Light of Christ, here again in the hearts and minds of most of the people? Will the birds, now after midnight, stop crying to God for order? Will we ever find a home here?

Thankfully, I know from experience and my Faith, that this is not my home. And, like that day on the dunes, I shall have to endure suffering in order to find that spark in the heart which surrounds love, and that is hope, not for what is seen, but for what is unseen. This is our Faith, which leads to hope and love.

The Devout Life

It is an error, nay more, a very heresy, to seek to banish the devout life from the soldier’s
guardroom, the mechanic’s workshop, the prince’s court, or the domestic hearth. Of course
a purely contemplative devotion, such as is specially proper to the religious and monastic
life, cannot be practised in these outer vocations, but there are various other kinds of devotion
well-suited to lead those whose calling is secular, along the paths of perfection. The Old
Testament furnishes us examples in Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, David, Job, Tobias, Sarah,
Rebecca and Judith; and in the New Testament we read of St. Joseph, Lydia and Crispus,
who led a perfectly devout life in their trades:—we have S. Anne, Martha, S. Monica, Aquila
and Priscilla, as examples of household devotion, Cornelius, S. Sebastian, and S. Maurice among soldiers;—Constantine, S. Helena, S. Louis, the Blessed Amadaeus, 3
and S. Edward on the throne. And we even find instances of some who fell away in solitude,—usually so helpful to perfection,—some who had led a higher life in the world, which seems so antagonistic to it. S. Gregory dwells on how Lot, who had kept himself pure in the city, fell in his
mountain solitude. Be sure that wheresoever our lot is cast we may and must aim at the
perfect life.

Read, Dear Readers and find it here.

“THE flowers appear on the earth,” says the Heavenly Bridegroom, and the time for
pruning and cutting is come. And what, my child, are our hearts’ flowers save our good
desires? Now, so soon as these begin to appear, we need the pruning-hook to cut off all dead
and superfluous works from our conscience. When the daughter of a strange land was about
to espouse an Israelite, the law commanded her to put off the garment of her captivity, to
pare her nails, and to shave her head; 10 even so the soul which aims at the dignity of becoming the spouse of Christ, must put off the old man, and put on the new man, forsaking sin:
moreover, it must pare and shave away every impediment which can hinder the Love of
God. The very first step towards spiritual health is to be purged from our sinful humours.
S. Paul received perfect purification instantaneously, and the like grace was conferred on S.
Magdalene, S. Catherine of Genoa, S. Pelagia, and some others, but this kind of purgation
is as miraculous and extraordinary in grace as the resurrection of the dead in nature, nor
dare we venture to aspire to it. The ordinary purification, whether of body or soul, is only
accomplished by slow degrees, step by step, gradually and painfully

Different Rendition