May 14, 2011
Recently, I was reading someone’s perspective on Confirmation and the preparation for the sacrament… all the classes, catechesis, training, retreats, and completion of requirements. Before I could even absorb anything, I was thinking about our class of sophomore candidates and everything that still needed to be done or put in motion. I wondered about where they are, if they are ready, if they are sincerely willing. I thought of things that need to change, ways to reach them better, and on and on and on. I wasn’t really reading; I was skimming and thinking with far too much on my mind — until a single misspelling made me stop where I was and reconsider everything.
The world tells us that conformity is a terrible thing. Maybe the most despicable thing there is! Conforming means someone else has power, not you! Conforming means you have to sacrifice being true to yourself! You are brainwashed, controlled, and manipulated. So the world screams, increasingly louder: Don’t be conformed! Don’t let anyone tell you what to do! Freedom means doing what YOU think is right and necessary. The greatest evil is to let someone else control you.
It is a self-absorbed and hedonistic battle cry. Eventually, we realize that this battle is exhausting, never-ending, and will ultimately be devastatingly fatal. We begin to search for greater truth.
For our teens, this is the last step of initiation into the Catholic Church. This is the opportunity to take ownership, stand up, and claim the faith as Truth. It is the time to utter a final “yes” to be conformed to the Catholic Church, her teaching and tradition, and to Christ.
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November 1, 2010
I love November!! I don’t really know why… well, sure I do! It’s FALL, and growing up in Southeast Texas, it doesn’t get cool here until November. It’s the month of Thanksgiving and Christmas shopping and decorating. Leaves are changing colors and it’s time for scarves and sweaters! (Like I said, Texas is a little behind on the action. I like it.) I’m not a big fan of Halloween, but I love hayrides and wrapping up in blankets, drinking hot cocoa and cider, special drinks at Starbucks, and did I mention…. getting ready for CHRISTMAS?! My favorite!! SO, I am a very happy girl now that Halloween is past and November is here!
Today is All Saints Day, and it’s the first year I feel like I have a really good grasp of the meaning of it. I’ve known what it was since… well, kindergarten, I’m sure! I was a Catholic school kid, afterall. We had projects that were tradition! In the 3rd grade, I made a paper towel tube version of a saint (I don’t remember who… but I think she wore blue, so it might’ve been Mary). In the 5th grade, I made a poster with an awesome sword on it and wrote a report on St. Agnes. And in the 7th grade — the greatest of all saint projects in school that EVERY kid looked forward to — I wrote a long report, prepared an oral presentation, and dressed up as St. Helen of the Cross! Seventh graders get to process down the aisle at the all-school Mass on the morning of All Saints Day to the litany of the saints, and then visit classrooms throughout the school, impersonating and telling your saint’s story! I’m telling you… it was the greatest. I even had my own cross to carry around all day. LEGIT.
But anyway, this All Saints Day makes me so thankful for all the REAL LIFE people out there that have made the choice every single day to be God’s! I just recently learned about Blessed Chiara “Luce” Badano via this news post. What an inspiration!
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