Friday, July 29, 2011

My personal debt crisis

All this talk about the debt crisis got me to thinking: to whom do I owe a debt?

Of course, the first "person" to come to mind is God. Actually I owe a debt to the first, second and third person (of the Trinity). He has been so good to me. In addition to having parents, siblings, and an extended family who loved me, I ended up with a wonderful husband with whom I share the vocation of marriage, and two great kids. I am about to gain a lovely daughter-in-law that is a gift from God to our family. I have a network of loving friends who bring me joy every day. God has been so good to me. I owe him a debt of gratitude each and every hour of every day. Too many times we take the things He gives us for granted and we forget to thank Him for those things. We just end up taking them for granted.

The debt I owe that I find most important is the one I owe to Jesus. He gave Himself and gives Himself to me every day. He loves me enough to say, "Take and eat, LaJuan" even though I know in the bottom of my heart that I am certainly not worthy. Just in the last year have I fully began to realize the significance of the Eucharist and what it truly means to me. I guess it is better late than never. But that is how He rolls, isn't it? He loves us anyway, and gives Himself to us fully whether we appreciate it or not. I just love Him so, I cannot fully express it. But He knows my love is true.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The new missal changes or would you like some cheese with that whine?

This Advent, some changes are coming to the English speakers in the Catholic Church. We will begin using the Third Edition of the Roman Missal. In this edition, the English has been translated to be much closer to the original Latin, and we (and the celebrants) will be learning some new parts to the mass.

I will preface this by saying that I am no Catholic scholar or theologian. My understanding is that when they translated the Missal from Latin to the vernacular, we ended up with what I like to refer to as the "Kum by Yah" version. It's a wee bit soft, compared to the real translation. It's ok, but it's just not exactly right. I'm not saying that we have been saying something wrong, I just think we are going to be saying it better in relation to the Mother Tongue of the Church. So here we are saying things our way when the rest of the Church is saying it the right way? How is that Universal again?

I love the folks who like to complain about it. You know them. They are probably in your parish, among your friends, or even in your family. They are flapping their gums in Catholic Facebook groups and on blogs. They say things like, "This is not going to be easy," or "This doesn't make sense to me. Why do we have to go backwards?" (We're not going backwards, we're going back. Big difference.) They say, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." (It is broke and they did fix it.)

How about those Irish Bishops who are just flatly refusing to comply. Really? So, when you guys went to Bishop School, you just missed the class on obedience? (Catechism 101, fellas). I'll just bet you expect your priests to be obedient to YOU, don't ya?

Then there are the folks who whine and ask, "Why do we have to learn something different?" Or, "I am comfortable with Mass the way it is. I don't like it." (You don't get a vote)

Hey, it's not like you are a member of the Church founded by Christ himself or anything. Oh yeah, and last week when you were at Mass, your priest (and mine) was in persona Christi and he offered you the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Christ in the Eucharist.

Personally, I don't want to be "comfortable" at Mass. I want to jump for joy when I receive the Eucharist! I want to speak to the Lord using the same words as the rest of the Body. So, teach me 10,000 new words and I will learn them all gratefully.

"Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed."

And with your spirit.