For decades radical feminism has beaten men into submission. This is extremely prevalent within the abortion sphere. Men are told that the baby is not theirs, but is only the woman’s. After all, only wanted babies belong to the mothers AND the fathers. Men are told that they should support a woman in murdering their child, because he should be enlightened and show women the respect they supposedly did not get pre-1960. That’s right, the respectful thing to do is to knock a girl up and then drive her to the abortion clinic. Do I think that this is how most women, who are scared and do not know what to do, feel when they decide to go visit the local abortion clinic? No. Rather this is the face of big abortion and radical feminism. It is not the face of the young college student who is terrified from the positive pregnancy test, or the teenage girl who is forced by her parents to get an abortion, or the older man who takes his underage girlfriend to get rid of the evidence, the couple who is terrified of having a child, the woman who is in an abusive relationship, or the poor woman who is just trying to make ends meet. In fact, I would guess that a lot of these women want the men in their lives to stand up for them, tell them they will support them and their child, and that everything is going to work out. And for the women who are victims, what they need is someone to help them, not kill their child.
Yesterday I had my monthly Lay Dominican meeting. During Mass, the Homily focused on prayer. Father talked about how we can underestimate the power of prayer and that it is essential to the Christian life. It is the focus, along with the Sacraments, of the Christian path. It was then that I felt like God was smacking me over the head with a hammer. All week, I have heard the Spirit and my Guardian Angel, whispering to me to pray. When I get stressed out, pray. When the world is too much to take, pray. When someone I love is struggling, pray. While doing the dishes, pray. Folding laundry, pray. Scheduling my day, pray. Better yet, schedule my day around prayer. So that is why St. Paul said to “pray without ceasing”. I can be a little slow on the uptake sometimes.
The world has been a mess since the Fall. There are always storm clouds on the horizon for human beings throughout the world, including in our own country. The USCCB has asked Catholics to consider fasting and praying on Fridays. My husband and I started abstaining from meat on Fridays a couple of years ago, except on Feast Days, and during Easter and Christmas. Have you thought about answering the Bishop’s call? There is much to pray and fast for in our world, from hunger, to violence/war, persection, homelessness, abortion, illness, accidents, grief, attacks on family/marriage, our own messed up government (think HHS mandate and all of the petty shutdown activities), and the list goes on and on. I encourage you to give up something on Fridays. Giving up the Internet is a sacrifice for me, so I will be fasting from the Internet tomorrow. What can you give up as a sacrifice on Fridays?
I have gone through my first series of HCG shots. I am getting better at giving myself the shot, which I usually choose to do in my stomach. If I pay attention it does not hurt, but if I do it in a hurry, I bruise myself. The first few days I was feeling a bit better mentally and physically. It’s the pregnancy hormone and I usually feel more balanced when I am pregnant, minus the projectile vomiting. The problem is, that it has not lasted, not that I expected immediate results (that doesn’t mean that some small part of me wasn’t hoping…lol).
I am still struggling with the same severe PMS symptoms: severe anxiety, fatigue, cravings, depression. The HCG has had no impact on these symptoms even though my progesterone levels have risen to “awesome” levels and my estrogen is rising, it just still is not at the goal. My estrogen levels were really low. As my husband explained it to some of our friends, “here is average, here is one step below average, and here is my wife, way down here”.
Here’s the thing, there are no quick fixes, and I was not expecting any. So if you decide to see a NaPro doctor, keep in mind that it will take a while to figure it all out. Body chemistry, especially hormones, are extremely complicated. It is amazing how much they impact our bodies. It can be discouraging, but like me, you have to remember to be patient and not lose hope.
When you have days like today, like the day that I am having, where I am anxious, tired, and depressed, listen to your Guardian Angel and pray. I keep hearing over and over again, “pray, Constance”. Am I doing a very good job of listening? No, but I do know that it is all that I can do and it is the right thing to do. I have been through these kinds of days hundreds of times, so I know that in time, things get better. I also need to learn to cling to the Cross. The Cross is the only thing that will set me free and my Guardian Angel is trying to smack me upside the head. Have you seen this image on Catholic Memes:
Keep up the good fight and remember to fall on Christ. Have a blessed day!
I am not proud of this fact, but I have fallen into gossip lately. It is one of those things that most of us fall into at one point or another. For me it usually involves orthodoxy, or rather, a lack there of. Father Barron, in his series Seven Deadly Sins Seven Lively Virtues, discusses gossip under the sin of envy. He talks about how we, as sinners, can become envious, or, even happy, at another person’s failure. This is absolutely true. Think about the last time you fell into gossip. Was it because you heard some bad or juicy news about someone else? I think that frustration can drive gossip, as well.
I am a revert to the Faith. I spent my Twenties living in the somewhat Catholic category, before I fully entered cafeteria Catholic for a few years. During that time, I had a lot of my fellow Catholics ignoring my behavior because they themselves ignored Church teaching in various areas. Yes, relativism. How can I be brought to the fullness of Truth when the people around me are not living out Church teaching? That is how I felt. And in living as I was living, I hurt others too by my example, to my utter shame. When I finally found my way fully back to Christ’s Church, I realized just how much damage had done to me and to others. Loving someone is not leaving them in their sin. Loving someone is showing them God’s mercy and love and then showing them that in choosing to love, we must abandon our sin. Do we fail? Absolutely! But, we cannot say to someone either in the Church or who is contemplating coming into the Church, that it is ok to ignore certain aspects of Church teaching because the Pope needs to “get with the times”. Rather, we need to get with Jesus Christ. Church dogma and doctrine, is God’s dogma and doctrine, revealed through Revelation and the Holy Spirit. Because of my own dalliances in mortal sin, I am deeply passionate about protecting others from the same state. It truly kills the soul and cuts us off from God. Love shows us that we must help each other away from serious sin, as well as help each other with habitual sin.
That being said, sometimes my own passion can get the better of me. It can start of as righteous anger in the face of ignorance or disobedience and turn to sinful anger. I think that I have reached that point. I realized it when my husband asked me if I had stayed late at the church last night “complaining” about what had happened this past weekend? Whoops! I have crossed into sin territory. He is absolutely right. I either need to take action or let it go, but stop harping on it. I think that I may let it go for now and trust that our Bishop is working things out slowly. There is a lot of clean up to do. I need to pray for him and our Diocese.
Since we all do it from time-to-time here are a few ways to avoid gossiping about others:
1. Say something positive about the person during the conversation. Speaking in a complimentary and charitable way, reminds us that there are good traits in everyone and that we too are in need of mercy.
2. Talk directly to the person you have an issue with, instead of about them. You may need advice from your spouse or a trusted friend beforehand, but always plan to confront the person, or forgive them, and move on.
3. Change the subject. Try to veer the conversation into a new direction.
4. Take action. If it is a situation that you need to deal with, then get the information to the person it needs to go to. Once it is handed off, then you need to move on and trust that it will be dealt with in an appropriate manner.
5. Pray for the person. When frustrated or angry at someone, be sure to pray for them. It can be an inner struggle, but try to focus for a few minutes and ask Our Lord to bless them.
6. Go to Confession. After gossiping, go to Confession. Gossip wounds us and it wounds others. Go and seek forgiveness and be wiped clean. It reminds us that we are all sinful and make mistakes, and it also sets us free from our anger and resentment.
I hope that this helps you to avoid gossip. I know that it is something that I must work on now and in the future. God bless!
One of the hardest things that we are asked to do as Christians, is to love our enemies. For many of us those enemies can be in our family or in our community. For a lot of Americans these days, it is our government. The response that we are called to in this situation is prayer. Sure we can call and write our Representatives and vote, and we should, but after that we must pray.
Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you
and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of me.
Rejoice and be glad,
for your reward will be great in heaven.
Thus they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
St. Matthew 5:10-12
Given how Pope Francis’ public interviews have been so distorted by the media, I think we really need to have an honest discussion about sin. Since “the Spirit of Vatican II” came rushing into the Church in the 1960s and 1970s with its felt banners and feel good about yourself rhetoric, there has been a major de-emphasis on sin. This is a huge reason why the majority of the faithful in the West do not attend Confession regularly, if at all. Never-mind the correlation between a surge in “shrinks” and decrease in Confession attendance.
A couple of hours ago, Catholic Vote published an article detailing how federally contracted Catholic priests are barred from saying Mass during the government shutdown, or face jail time. Yes, you read that right. As a Catholic and a Veteran, this turned my stomach. You see, I was a Russian Linguist, which means that I know quite a bit about Soviet history and tactics. How do you kill a frog? You put it in cold water and then turn the heat up slowly. This, my friends, is a test. This is a way for the people in charge to test the waters to see how far they can go. How far can they go in their attacks on the Church?
This week we started Fr. Barron and Word on Fire’s, http://www.wordonfire.org, new Catholicism series that focuses on the New Evangelization. Just like the first Catholicism series, it is rich and beautiful. This particular study is much shorter and has a discussion and homework element. The aim is to get Catholics sitting in the pews involved in evangelizing the world. That word can have a negative connotation, but it is not the same thing as proselytizing. We have been given the Good News and the key to Eternal Life. We should joyfully want to share this gift by the way we live and in the relationships we foster with the people who cross our path. Most importantly, we must learn to listen. We must open our hearts to where people are on the journey. That does not mean sacrificing our beliefs (think “the Spirit of Vatican II”), it just means working through the path with someone without expecting them to be where we are in our path to holiness. The Church must go out into the world and meet the world. We are not to be formed by the world, but to bring the world to Christ. This is a wonderful series and I recommend getting it for your parish.
It is easy for me to get worked up about the evil going on in the world, or about how I fail often at being the mother and wife God wants me to be. By becoming distracted by all of the darkness, or by allowing a self-loathing dialogue to run rampant in my mind, I am allowing the Enemy to win in my heart. He wants me to despair. He wants me to think that he has won and that there is no point in fighting back, in serving others, or focusing on my family. That is his creed: despair. But, the truth is that Jesus Christ won the battle for us all by dying for our sins and showing us the hope of Eternal life. That does not mean that this life is easy, but it does mean that love and hope always will conquer over evil. It just may be that we will not fully understand until we are with Him.