Thursday, September 27, 2007
My suitcase is on the floor beside my chair, still half-packed from the two day car ride with-funeral that I just returned from Tuesday. That might be a good thing because most of the clothes that are still in the suitcase are clean: I will just tell mrangelmeg that I am getting a head start on my packing for the weekend. I am taking a short trip to visit friends and spend Saturday researching for my papers in my Gradual School Library (an award winning piece of architectural beauty I might add). Yeah, I am just starting to pack early.
Mrangelmeg informed me last night that he will be gone part of the next two weeks, and I should get used to this pattern because for the foreseeable future this is his life; he will be home long enough each week to pay bills and exchange his clothes for clean ones and hopefully attend Mass as a family before he will be off again. The bright side is that he will be racking up tons of frequent flyer miles I suppose.
I know that we are told that God doesn't give us more than we can handle, but I have often said (and really feel this way at this moment) that my shoulders must look a lot more broad and strong from his perspective in heaven than they actually are. I am feeling slightly overwhelmed at this moment.
And yet, the Office of readings this morning was again from the book of Wisdom:
For Wisdom is mobile beyond all motion,
and she penetrates and pervades all things by reason of her purity.
For she is an aura of the might of God
and a pure effusion of the glory of the Almighty;
therefore nought that is sullied enters into her.
For she is the refulgence of eternal light,
the spotless mirror of the power of God,
the image of his goodness.
And she, who is one, can do all things,
and renews everything while herself perduring;
And passing into holy souls from age to age,
she produces friends of God and prophets.
For there is nought God loves, be it not one who dwells with Wisdom.
For she is fairer than the sun and surpasses every constellation of the stars.
Compared to light, she takes precedence;
for that, indeed, night supplants,
but wickedness prevails not over Wisdom.
I suppose that the Wisdom I received this morning is that when it all seems like too much, stop trying to do it all by yourself. I will rely upon Wisdom (a woman you will note from the text) and leave my cares in God's capable hands. I am sure She can handle them much better than I can.
Maybe what I need right now is a nice cup of tea.
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
The first incidence was when I opened my Daily Office for that day and the first reading for the Office of Readings was
They seemed, in the view of the foolish, to be dead;
and their going forth from us, utter destruction.
For if before men, indeed, they be punished,
Chastised a little, they shall be greatly blessed,
As gold in the furnace, he proved them,
In the time of their visitation they shall shine,
They shall judge nations and rule over peoples,
Those who trust in him shall understand truth,
Then it turned out that this was also one of the readings that they had chosen for Aunt Mary's mass. It was so affirming especially because my closest cousin left the church nearly 20 years ago and has been a Baptist lo these many years. She just recently picked up a Catholic Women's Devotional Bible and has been using it for her morning scripture study and has been GREATLY moved by the affirmation and help she has found in its pages. For us to discover together that the Church in her infinite wisdom had chosen that specific reading for the exact day of her mom's funeral was such an eye opening God-incidence for her.
The Cantor for the Mass sang Panis Angelicus in English. This is possibly one of my favorite hymns but I had never actually heard the English lyrics before and was amazed at how beautiful they are. (Score one big one for the vernacular)
It rained pretty much the entire day, (Aunt Mary always said "It's good for the ducks" on rainy days) but just as the service at the graveside was ending and we were walking back to the cars a ray of sunshine broke through the clouds.
I was able to give some good counsel to my cousins who are dealing also with their father's increased dementia and have placed him in a nursing home. He didn't even make it to the funeral because he is so far gone. I kept reassuring them that they should not tell him that Mary is dead. For him she can always remain alive. When he asks when he will see her they can say, "She had to go to the Dr. today but she will come tomorrow." She will always be on her way to see him, with his memory loss that will be enough to reassure him.
I spent a lot of time getting acquainted or reacquainted with my cousins and their husbands, wives and children. One of the kids, a very astute 14 year old boy said "I hate that the only time I get to see all of my cousins is at funerals." A greater truth could not be spoken about families.
My sister and brother and I all came away feeling very blessed that we have such a great extended family and we need to keep in touch with everyone.
I got home to my family about 8:30 and my kids were actually happy to see me.
Will wonders never cease.
Thanks to everyone who sent prayers and condolences.
Sunday, September 23, 2007
My brother is already there and will be meeting my sister (whom I am picking up on the way) and I when we get there tomorrow afternoon. There will be many blessings on this trip, one of which is that this will be a Catholic funeral. I think I have blogged before about my aversion to funerals in other denominations. There is something both sad and joyful about a Mass of Christian Burial. It is one of the things we Catholics do right.
I will be driving back on Tuesday after the funeral. I am hoping to stop by the cemetery where my dad is buried at some point in this short trip. It has been probably ten years since the last time I visited his grave site.
I am going to pack my reading, but who knows (or cares really ) if I will actually have the time to read any of it.
I really don't like long driving trips. I am hoping that I can convince my sister to drive part of the way both ways.
Keep me in your prayers.
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Just this morning I received word that my Aunt Mary (my father's brother's wife) died. She had been ill herself for a long time and she finally couldn't hold on anymore. Her husband, my uncle, is suffering from dementia, and has been placed in a hospital as the first step to transferring him to a nursing home. (I will be able to counsel the family on what to expect having just gone through it with my mom.)
I am going to try to get to the funeral this time because I couldn't last time. The two families live in the same city.
I am not devastated by these deaths because I know that my aunt and uncle are no longer in pain, but I am very concerned about how my aunt's family will handle the stress of losing a mother and having to put their dad in a nursing home.
Please say a quick prayer for the repose of the souls of Chuck and Mary, and for comfort for their families.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Today's quote comes from The Decree of the Holy Office (1690 AD)
It is not licit to follow a (probable) opinion,
For those of you who don't read Church-Speak this document
Just Say No To Relativism
Monday, September 17, 2007
Okay, so I will have to admit that when my friend and alumnus of my Gradual School Paul sent me a comment saying he was going to "hit me with the BRA meme" my first thought was does his wife know that he plays with bras. Maybe I am tired, or maybe The Christian Faith in the Doctrinal Documents of the Catholic Church which I have been perusing today to see what I can use in my essays has finally pushed me over the edge.
I am honored that he has chosen to put me in the company of the other bloggers he wrote about, even if he did get a few details wrong (I live in south central Indiana, not northern, and I am actually an MA candidate not an MTS)
That being said, and really needing something to distract me after an entire day with Neuner and Dupuis (see above) I will gladly play along.
Here are the rules:
1. Copy these rules.
2. Reflect on five bloggers and write a least a paragraph about each one.
3. Make sure you link to this post so others can read it and the rules.
4. Leave your chosen bloggers a comment to let them know they've been given the award.
5. Put the award icon on your site
In no particular order I will reflect on:
Adoro te devote I came across this blog through a fortuitous link from another blog. I have been a loyal reader ever since that first visit. With deeply personal reflections on work, life and pets, she is a real inspiration to me. She is just beginning her Masters work as I am ending mine albeit at different Gradual Schools. I wish her much luck and encouragement on her journey.
Ironic Catholic My week would not be complete without a stop at this wonderful blog that is part religious truth part total LOL funny sarcasm. I have been a loyal reader for a long time now and am in awe of her wit and wisdom. If you haven't read her 100 Ironic reasons to be Catholic (in groups of ten) it is worth an afternoon of checking her archives.
. . .And I Let Myself be Duped is the blog of Mark Mossa SJ, a Jesuit Scholastic who has been chronicling his life and studies for the priesthood. I count Mark as a very dear friend that I have never actually met in person; but hope to someday. He has always had a word of encouragement or some other helpful tidbit (like the paper on Substance he sent me when I was
suffering through taking my first ever philosophy class was like a lifeline in a very stormy sea.
Martha Martha is another of my earliest finds in the Blogosphere. Penni is so openly honest about her joys and struggles with her faith that she reminds me that we are all still "working out our salvation with fear and trembling.: She has possibly the most visually stunning site of anyone I know on the Internet. A few months of reading her posts is like an adult education class in Art Appreciation. Not to mention all of the scripture and inspirational posts she includes.
And finally but in no way least:
Maior autem his est caritas is the blog of Gashwin Gomes (not his real name). This is a gentleman who was raised in India but is currently a resident of the American South. Of late his blog has been an amazing travelogue that makes my head spin (me who has never left the North American Continent save a three month diversion in Hawaii at 13). He has chronicled the illness and death of his father in a way that is deeply moving. Not only is he one of my regular reads, he is in my daily prayers.
Five is entirely too few choices for this kind of award, but I will leave all my other blogger pals to the mercy of God.
I hope you enjoy these blogs especially if you haven't ever visited them.
I think that is one of the reasons that I began taking piano lessons a few years ago, and why mrangelmeg and I started taking ballroom dance lessons. Those are two things I have always wanted to be able to do, and kept telling myself that someday I would have the time for them. Then my mom got Alzheimer's disease, and I watched her run out of time.
Don't wait to do that thing you have always wanted to do, make every day of your life an adventure in learning new things and having new experiences.
I complain constantly about Gradual School, but I am so happy that I am doing that too. To think that just five years ago I was terrified to even start the process, and now I am very close to completing my degree.
I took up golf when mrangelmeg and I first got married so that we could spend time together. Over the years I haven't played all that much, but this summer the few times I played were very enjoyable. I am so glad I didn't just wish I had tried it.
So, my advice to all of you this Monday morning is NOW IS THE TIME . . .
to begin dance lessons.
to learn a new language.
to learn to knit or crochet.
to build that boat you have always wanted to build.
to write that novel or screenplay.
to take that trip to Ireland.
to tell everyone you love that you do love them.
to spend quiet time with the one you love.
to be adventurous.
because some day soon, it may be too late to do all those things.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Saturday, September 15, 2007
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
So what have I been doing this amazing late summer day?
Researching heresies for one of my final essays.
I even have the shades pulled on my bedroom window so I won't feel too bumbed out about being stuck inside on a day like this.
May there be many more.
So much for my having any kind of meaningful social life for the next two months while I get these essays researched and written.
Maybe I should have tried to retain all that stuff I was learning in the classes I took.
Oh well, at least I will be learning something now.
Saturday, September 08, 2007
I thought for sure I wouldn't hear the bells since they are very hard to hear in the guesthouse where I am staying this weekend, but that didn't matter because I woke up and looked at the clock and it was 5:10 a.m. Since I have this promise with God I had to get up and go to prayer even though the bells didn't wake me up.
So I went to prayer and was rewarded by getting to hear one of my professors who happens to be a monk be cantor (he has a very nice singing voice, among other of his attributes - we call him Br. Mcdreamy)
I also got this message from today's psalmody:
Friday, September 07, 2007
Colts 41 - Saints 10!
Take that every critic who says we don't have the skill to be a powerhouse team!!!
The Defense Rocked last night. And while the offense took a bit of time warming up Peyton Manning played an awesome second half (something he is becoming very skilled at doing) . Which just goes to show you can't count the Colts out when they are down (or tied) at halftime because as Coach Dungy says "The game isn't over until the end of the 4th quarter.
My apologies to Mark Mossa SJ who had to watch one of his favorite teams lose. Heck even Archie Manning (Peyton's dad, who played for the Saints) had to watch his team lose last night, but I think in this case he was rooting for his son's team.
Thursday, September 06, 2007
The Colts are playing Football Tonight!
Please do not call, or interrupt her in any way.
She will be wearing her Official Jeff Saturday Colts Jersey, and watching the game on TV.
I am sure that she will be back to blogging very soon.