Monday, November 28, 2011

Everybody Having A Good Time?

Hey All!

GREAT NEWS:  I was fortunate enough to get to Mass on Sunday!  :D

BAD NEWS:  It wasn't the EF.  :(

DEPRESSING NEWS:  I heard from three different people the sermon by the Extaordinary priest included death.  :'(

WHY IT'S DEPRESSING NEWS:  I wanted a sermon with death!  >:(

RATIONALIZING NEWS:  Ah well, at least I was able to get to Mass....and assist with the new prayers, both for which I am VERY thankful.   ......Not all like the new translation, but, many do (ehehehehehehe, see what I did there...)  :P

COMPENSATIONALIST NEWS:  I already know that for the next four weeks that the entire Catholic Church will be praying for the end of the world during Advent, so I got that going for me.  :D

GOOD NEWS:  One of the reasons I wanted to go to Mass at St. Joseph's was to take pictures of the Stations of the Cross in the nave. I was HOPING to go to the Vigil Mass on Saturday so I could still attend the EF on Sunday (DEATH!!!!!!!), but, I will accept it as God's Will that it was better I go on Sunday...for the lighting.

IN OTHER NEWS:  I asked the St. Joseph's pastor after Mass if he ever thought about offering the Mass in Latin.  I asked him this because, I don't know how, but, somehow, this church survived the changes of the Spirit of Vatican II; it is very condusive to the Latin Mass.

As one will see from the pictures below, not all the pictures were taken on the same day.  A few were taken when I first moved here, most were taken on 11/27/11.  There have been changes to the church over the years.  I remember when I was younger that the back wall, behind the altar was painted blue with gold stars. It has since been whitewashed.

First and foremost, NO, your eyes do not deceive you!  That IS an altar rail in the foreground!!  ...It's not used, of course...  That would render the Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion out of the sanctuary.  We must keep the EMHC positions safe within the sanctuary.  Kneeling down is a step backwards.

Second, in both the picture above and the picture below, one will notice that there is a door behind Mary's side (the Gospel Side) of the church.  One may even notice that there are two lights, a green light and a red light.  This is the Reconcilliation Room.  If one is in the nave, one has to go up into the sanctuary to get to the RR.  There IS the option of a grille or face to face in that room (so, they do follow the rules).  Again, if one is in the sanctuary, one has to go beyond the Tabernacle to get to the RR.  I mention this for a reason.

Nobody notice that St. Patrick & St. Anthony switched sides.  They just wanted to see if anybody was paying attention.  Just ignore it and they'll switch back.

Sacred Heart of Jesus.  With Stigmata.  In the Orans position.  Would probably be more effective if not everybody in the parish prays the Our Father this way.

Oh look, it's The Last Supper. I cannot think of a more appropriate relief on an altar for the Holy Sacrifice of the Ma...


This is the relief on the front of the altar on the wall.  I happened to notice it one day when coming out of Confession.  I was VERY surprised (pleasantly surprised, but then a little disheartened because is obscured by the free-standing altar) to see it here.  There is nothing that would encapsulate the Faith more perfectly than this just below the altar, just below the Tabernacle, just below the Sacred Heart of Jesus.  One will note the gold flames contrasted against the black background, separated by the wall of roses.  Perfect.  One sees it, one sees Catholicism beautifully.  One sees this, one almost doesn't have to hear a sermon about death.   ...Not hearing about death is killing me. :(

The first third of it in detail.  Agony and petition and shame.  I don't know if we are supposed to imagine the Precious Blood from the Chalice that the angel is holding to lessen the flames or if the Chalice is empty for a reason.

More petitioning.  LOTS more petitioning.  Nothing BUT petitioning.  One may note that Our Lady is holding a Cross.  Seriously, look at this third of the picture -- everybody except one is looking at Her, but, he is looking longingly at relief from an angel.  All others are begging for Our Lady's intercession.  DESPERATELY begging.

Right third.  More naked and exposed petitioning!  Except the guy on the right.  He's looking non-plussed with his whole purgation process.  Apparently Rodin's masterpiece wanted in on the purifying flames.  (Do the flames burn away the black that covers them? Are they supposed to be cleaner the more exposed they are?  If so, the guy in the tunic just got there; the guy mooning us is nearer to Heaven.)

Back to The Last Supper.  Okay, so, Judas is the one leaving, right?  I mean, that IS Judas, he is wearing black, he's not facing Jesus, he has red hair...JUDAS!  But, if THAT is Judas, who is Jesus feeding?  Is that John?  But, if THAT'S John, then who is leaning on Jesus?  I thought John leaned on Jesus.  But, that CAN'T be John leaning on Jesus because John didn't have a beard at this point.  The Disciple Jesus is feeding doesn't have a beard, that MUST be John.  And, hey, there's another guy not looking at Jesus!  And another!  But, their heads are tilted towards Him.  So, is it Peter leaning on Jesus?  ...Wouldn't Peter be the older guy with the white hair?  The full head of white hair?  Wait, no, Mabye St. Peter is the one standing next to St. John because St. Peter asked St. John to ask Jesus something during the Last Supper, ergo, St. Peter has to be by St. John....unless some got up and moved about a bit during this Passover Feast.  And who is the guy who's kneeling and next to St. Jude?  Well of COURSE that's St. Jude!!!  He looks JUST LIKE Jesus!!!  Well, at least Jesus is giving Communion on the tongue.

Wait, what?  Oh.

"We lift them up to the Lord."

AHHHHHHHHHHH  (See?  No ambiguity.  I know what I'm supposed to be thinking when I see this)  AHhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.................

Oh, look at that, Jesus is sharing!  See, it's because we are at the Lamb's Table when we go up to receive the Lord in our hearts in the Eucharist!  ...But, seriously, what's up with the visble background?  Wasn't this happening in the evening?  *squints*  Is that....IS THAT LEAVENED BREAD?!!!! 


The message of the first one is, "And also with you."
The message of the second one is, "And with thy spirit."

I don't know how this managed to stay.  Maybe nobody noticed the non-English.  It is still, as one can see from the above pictures, front and center.  I was going to make fun of that fact, but, then I remembered churches in IL that I have been to where the Tabernacle is off to the side and there is almost a blank back wall.  I am so very happy that is NOT the case here.  I almost wish this was my parish for the aesthetics.  I hope the Viewer/Reader opens this to a larger picture and sees how intricately detailed it is.  This is where God SHOULD be housed!  Not some wooden and glass box with an abstract plus-sign.  Gold, with adoring angels.  This is what the laity NEEDS to see.

Crucifix at the front of the church.  There is a life-sized one off to the Gospel side, in the north transept (if I'm labeling that part correctly), but, I didn't take a picture of it.

And, yep!  That's an altar lamp!  Red and everything!

Oh yeah, have I mentioned, this church is shaped like a cross? 

View from the sanctuary.  It's not shaped like a space ship or nothing!  There's NO WAY to have Mass in the round!  And look, there's a chior loft!  And it's actually used by a chior!  And stained glass windows!!!  ...I'm beginning to think this may not be a Catholic church....

Our Lady of Mount Carmel.

 And speaking of Our Lady...

These are done in fairly large reliefs throughout the church.  The reason they are my favourite of all the Stations of the Cross I have ever seen is because the background, the sky itself becomes darker and darker.

St. Mary Alocoque and the Sacred Heart.  As one exits the church, this is on one's left.

Annuniciation.  In the crying room.

I'm guessing Magdalene is the one with her face covered in the following.

In detail: 

Wait for it.....

Look at the background of the First Station and then look at this.  They are inside a tomb after sun-set and it is so dark, it needs to be illuminated by torch.  One can, if one opens this bigger, see the Cross and St. Dismas' cross outside.  Look at the delicately tender and lovingly way the three place Christ in the sheet.  The one woman guides his body and The Beloved Disciple cradles his hand and holds the sheet so as not to let the body simply fall back on to the hard stone.  The Torch Bearer cradles and comforts Our Lady.  And the Stigmatazed Hand is visible for all to see.
If ONLY there could have been a sermon to match this!

No, no, I'm fine.  I'm over it....

And so, this is the church I have via a 5 minute drive, a 20 minute walk, but, because the way the Mass is said, I don't want to go there.

I also do not want any neo post modern abstract pieces influencing feng shui placements creeping their way into this church.

And, to answer the question, yes, the pastor has thought about offering the Mass in Latin, but, not any time soon, as he has to get used to the prayers the new way.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Today's counsel brought to me by....

"Adjure contra."
"Adjure contra."
"What does it mean?"
"Say it."
"Adjure contra."
"Very good. It means 'working against'."
He then goes on to tell me about working against my base passions. He includes St. Paul's mentioning he does things he does not want to do. He tells me to work against my base passions which are a brat, "and nobody likes living with a little brat."
He also tells me to, when I am done with my work ... to ask my boss if there is any other work that I can do.
"For your penance, say 7 'Glory Be's' for the 7 Dolors."
*squeaked*"Yes, Father!"

Now do your best to make a good Act of Contrition.
"Oh my God, I am heartily sorry[.....]and to amend my life. Amen."
"Alright, go in peace."
"Thank you, Father!"
"You're welcome."
He is least like himself in this Sacrament. He is flawed, but, he is very holy, forgiving, disciplined, human, and saintly. I don't want to say he doesn't take this life seriously, because, clearly he does, otherwise he'd not be in his vocation, but, he does have a sense of humour, especially about himself.
My God, I am heartily sorry for having ever complained about him.

[this post is from months ago, but, I don't know when the date was]

Saturday, September 10, 2011

I and the Father are one

I don't remember which Mass it was last week, but, it happened again yesterday.

Typically when the priest holds up the Host for the People's Communion during the "Domine non sum dignus" part, it is typically done in a manner that the Host is visibly seen and I can differentiate it against the backdrop of either the bricks or the color of the chasuble; I want to be able to see Him, but, not last night and not last week.  At either the Friday or Saturday Mass last week and the Friday Mass last night, Father held up Jesus and he wsa in front of the white part (which was pretty substantial) of the chasuble.  I just thought how perfect that was and so I thought I'd share.

Monday, September 5, 2011

"What's a matter Colonel Sanders? Chicken?"

Father Augustine Tolton was the first black priest in America.  There is a story about him that I read (but which I cannot now find reference) that when he was in Rome, studying, the day (night) before his ordination he was told, 'America is supposed to be a tolerant country, let's see if it lives up to that image.'  He was told this because he was studying African languages so he could be a priest in Africa, BUT, at the last minute, THE VERY LAST MINUTE, he was told otherwise.  After years of learning languages and with the belief he would be going to Africa, he was instead told that he would be going back to his home country.

He was needed more in the United States.

I had read this story a few months back and I know that Bishops, the Vatican...I'm not really sure who, but, the superiors of a priest, can, at any time, transfer a priest.  I also know that priests are transferred for the real reason of not getting too attached to any one priest or his personality; the priest doesn't matter but priest matters.  It doesn't matter who is the celebrant offering the Sacrifice because they are all in persona Christi. It doesn't matter who is there because He is there.

Priests are transferred so that we can be reminded of this.

It didn't work this time.

August 4, 2011, 1900, 2000, 2100...something, I'm not sure when, but, I was eating dinner and watching TV.  My iPhone rang and it wasn't the default ring tone.
It was Father McCambridge calling.

I think I wanted to talk to him anyway, so, it was odd that he was calling me, but, it's not the first time I wanted to communicate with him and that happened.

Unfortunately, the news wasn't what I wanted to hear.  He told me he was being transferred; his superior wanted him to report to the new place (he couldn't tell me where because three priests were being transferred, all were to break the news on the upcoming Sunday, that way nobody of one parish could call a friend at another parish and start talking about it) by next Thursday (one week from whence he called).  That Sunday was to be his last Sunday there as Assistant Pastor.

The thing is, he was asking his parishioners to pray for a special intention.  I don't think I particularly did initially, but, when he asked it of penitents in the confessional, I began fervently praying for his special intention, asking God that whatever it is, He grant it.
The last Friday he was there, after Mass, outside, I walked up to him and asked him, "So your special intention was that you would stay?" (I think he told me this the night before in the conversation.)  "No, my special intention was God's Will be done.  BUT, I suggested to him that I would like to stay."  "You should have suggested a little harder."  He didn't look like he appreciated that comment.

So, no wonder he got transferred, he was asking that we pray God's Will be done and I was praying that God grant him the special intention whatever it is.  (Yes, I realize, it's not all on me; he had an entire congregation (at least!) praying for him.)

I also remember that Friday because Father Van der Putten was also there, outside (it was the first Friday both priests were there since Good Friday).  He was talking to a circle of about 8 and saw me and said hi and asked how I was doing.  "I'd be much better if Father McCambridge was staying."  "I think that goes for all of us."  Indeed!  Poor Father Van der Putten!  He has the weight of the parish to support now.  No priest to help.

I am fortunate he called me.  He said he did that because he didn't want the first time to hear it to be from the pulpit.  I think I was one of the last called on his list.  He said that he was calling the husbands to let their families know, and I think he already called an older woman of the parish with whom he may be fairly close.

He did mention how he was going to be a Rector, not a Pastor, because, technically, he was going to be the head of a chapel.  I looked online and saw that there were two places where "Rector" was the title:  Nebraska and a school in Pennsylvania.  I was hoping for NE but, could see him as the head of the school in PA.
So, Sunday 8/7/11, he mentions he has one other announcement, he was being transferred to Nebraska.

I felt better.  Nebraska is drivable.
He also mentioned how he was going to be sad, but, he was sad when he was told he had to leave NJ, but, if he didn't come to Tulsa, he would have never been happy in Tulsa.  He was sad that he had to leave, but, he knew it wasn't the end, and he knew that it was God's Will he leaves.

The last thing he mentioned in his sermon (he was hyping and encouraged us to take a copy of St. Alphonsus de Liguori's "Uniformity With God's Will"), was, "Love the good God" (I think the entire quote, from a saint, was, "And so my children, love the good God."
He took a minute to compose himself, and his voice was higher if it didn't break when he said, "In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost."  The, "Amen," was not audible.

[Updated 12/3/11:  He puts the maniple back on and continues the Mass.  He is not distraught or distressed as he performs the Sacrifice.  There is no mingling the Mass with the interruption of the Mass.  He says the Mass of the Faithful like he has said every other Mass.]

Afterwards there was his Going Away Party, and, I tried to thank him for everything before he went in (and in true fashion, I was looking down, trying to remember everything), but, Father Van der Putten said he was needed in the CCD building.

I stayed (though I initially had no intention to do so, as a matter of fact, I wanted to thank him before his party started so I could leave right away, but, that wasn't in God's Will....and who am I to argue with God's Will?).

I really didn't mingle during the celebration, as a matter of fact, I remained hidden in the kitchen and the back during most of it (I also met a wonderful seminarian, Joshua Curtis, I think was his name, in his 4th year of seminary, and, so much like a good priest already!).  There is a funny man there who apparently makes the coffee every week, and he was commenting about how he wasn't used to this many people in his kitchen.  Too bad I don't remember Funny Man's name.

When it was time to go, as much was said, and, I mentioned to him that I'm going to mention the words he hates the most:  Father, you're going to get an e-mail.

"Aaaargh!," he played along.

"You know it's going to be long and detailed."

"I know."


My Father knows me.

I remember being inside one CCD room when he was right outside and picked up a box from off the table.  I sheepishly asked for a hug.

He put the box down and we hugged.

It was....unremarkable.  I don't remember at all what it felt like.  He clearly wasn't as bony as I might have thought, or, maybe he is, his clothes just cover that fact well.

The next thing I remember is we were outside, in front of the building, and I was standing just off to the left of Father, who was to the left of the door with his back to St. Augustine's talking to two other men.  He invited me to come into the shade (I kinda didn't know if I should be that close to them), and I was listening to that conversation.  The man directly in front of him said he wanted one final blessing from him before he left.

And Father McCambridge obliged and gave the two men and I one final blessing.

Father McCambridge offered his hand to help me up, but, there was a pillar I used to get up, instead.  I don't want to be dependant on Father, but, I failed miserably with that.

Also at his Farewell Party, which, by the way, started at approximately 1030...and there was beer, he stated to a group that he was supposed to be in Tulsa for another year, and his superior thought he could do that for him, but, as it turns out, he was transferred.

The thing is, as far as not growing attached, it didn't take that long.  I had only been talking to him, for ten months....and he had only been at the parish for 13 at this time.

I remember talking to him on the grass by the CCD building, and, the seminarian was trying to call him away, but, Father gave him a box to take to the car (all three of them were taking Father VdP's car, I think).  I don't remember how we got to this point, but, I mentioned that I thought he wouldn't be sad of the transfer because he would have a new parish and serve new people (or something like that).  "Priest's aren't robot's (Attia)."

No, apparently not.  Priests are human, and thus, sinners.

But, they have God on their side, and they teach us we have God on our side.  And, if God is for us, who can be against us?

(Incidentally, one will note, I did not at any point during this final Sunday, sob hysterically and clutch Father McCambridge's ankle with the grip of death....I think that was pretty stoic of me.)

Sunday, February 27, 2011

And again, my priest...

Fr. VdP said something during the interruption of Mass today that occured to me less than 30 minutes ago.

Some bloke may be dying. The one particular man he was talking about had two(?) blood clots in his lungs. They were in his legs, he was given blood thinners and they traveled to his lungs. He could die if they reach his heart.

We were asked to keep him in our prayers.

But, Fr. VdP began this with something like, "*So & So is in the hospital, I gave him the Sacraments early this morning..."

EARLY THIS MORNING is what just recently dawned on me. He was celebrating the 0830 Mass (and the 1300 one, since Fr. Mc is away this week), and so, "Early this morning" was EARLY this morning. I don't know what time he wakes up, but, he has to get ready for the day and say his prayers and all that, plus, I'm guessing, says extra prayers and such because it is Sunday, BUT, he was called/asked to administer to this dying (possibly) soul. And he did. He got up, drove to the hospital, and took care of God's child.

That's true service, that is charity, that is vocation, right there.

But, the thing is, he COULDN'T go home and sleep, no, he had Mass, and, he had another one later, and, he was just as vibrant as ever during the Homily and all throughout the actual Mass he was manipled to. After Mass, he was outside talking with the parishoners.

These men are really called to be no less than Jesus.

May God grant them abundant graces to be like Him.

It really always amazes me how much Frs. VdP & Mc put themselves out. ...God is not going to accept any excuse from me for my laziness. May God have mercy on me.

God bless my priests!

And we're back!

To our regularly scheduled postings....who knew that a blog dedicated to The Sacred Heart and Our Lady would turn into "I LOVE MY PRIESTS!!!!"? ;)

Anyway, I found out recently, through happenstance clicking around on the Internet, why a priest wears what he does. At least, what he wears what he SHOULD.

~MY~ Father's wear them, and, it makes a difference. I wish all priests would wear these, for their benefit and for ours.

Three Things:

1. Roman Collar.
----Like a dog has a collar, so do these men. It shows that they MUST be obedient to Rome (i.e., the Pope/the Church). They are bound to Her teachings.

2. The Cassock.
----Black. To show that they are dead to the world. Neck-to wrists-to ankles. Modesty. Some have 33 buttons down the front, one for each year of Christ's life.

3. The Cinture.
----The wide belt around the priest's waist. It represents/symbolizes chastity.*

Every morning, traditional priests get up, say their prayers and get dressed (in that order?), and remind themselves and the world (for indeed, the reason priests dress apart is to show the world they ARE set apart, and, in theory, that anybody can see who they are and if they need to get to confession, if they cannot get a hold of that priest, they have a reminder) that they are a priest: they are living for God, dead to the world, and dead for the flesh.

I don't know how holy priests who do not wear the cassock and cinture (and collar) are, I really don't, and far be it from me to speculate on that, BUT, I think it is a grave disservice to the priests, for their own souls, who do not take advantage of this wardrobe. I don't know what seminary hates them, but, I hope, for their own souls, and, for the love of God and His Church and Her members, he would take it upon himself to research and wear these items.

All day, everyday.

* :D :D :D :D :D

Sunday, February 13, 2011

According to the Order of Melchisedech

Hey Blog,

Okay, just a little...

I've noticed myself, when speaking to Fr. McCambridge staring at his cossack around half the time than his's amazing what kind eyes and an overabundance of generocity can do. I like Father, I really really do BECAUSE God has put him here and if I cannot look Father McCambridge in the eye when discussing some things, it's going to be IMPOSSIBLE to stand in judgement before the Trinity. IMPOSSIBLE. As a matter of fact, I feel sorry for my friends, aquaintances, and bosses who think, with the way they dismiss what they do to and for themselves, and to others, that they really will have a shot of Heaven. It's not impossible, of course, providing that they repent, but, they cannot fool God. Just the fact that some are uncharitable, some are sacreligious, and some are lying and theiving, and they think that they wont be condemned if this continues! Especially because they do not have the Sacraments! I've been thinking about it lately; I am very thankful that I have the Sacraments. I don't know if it is because of Confession, Holy Communion, Father Van der Putten's instruction and admonishings from the pulpit (ESPECIALLY assist at Mass more than once a week.....Oh, please, God, bless and keep and keep holy Father Van der Putten), or Father McCambridge's instruction from the pulpit and council to me in person, but, I....don't want to say "feel"...I don't "feel" closer to God, but, I do think I am conforming more to His Will. I HOPE I am conforming more to his Divine Will. I do not feel compelled to engage in certain sins (the sins I know are sins), and I do not wish to join those who do, and I have been speaking out more against some of them to those committing them, and I do not wish to take part in sin and I feel sorry for those who persist in sin. I do hope they quit. I should probably pray for them. I mean, THEY ARE GROWN ADULTS!!!! Stop acting like children, start taking responsibility, stop defrauding, whether poor or rich are those affected!!!

Edit (this paragraph, 2/27/11): Okay, maybe I was a pit rash and harsh in my previous paragraph. Today Fr. VdP mentioned a certain woman who was a convert to the Faith and a friend of Saint Padre Pio (and how he kicked her Protestant mother's dog...and so very few priests would mention that) and her mother died and Saint Pio said she was in Heaven because of (justifiable?) ignorance and she practiced her faith in faith. ...The daughter, the Catholic, on the other hand, who was a Terciary and the kindest, most charitable, woman known to the people, though she went to Mass everyday, had to suffer some time in Purgatory. ...Maybe I am being hard on some of those I know, BUT, I do hope for their sakes they practice the faith as best they can for the love of God and do not try to get one over on Him. May God have mercy.

Where was I? Oh yeah, this one isn't about my priests...but, I just...THEY DO SO MUCH!!!! AND THEY'RE SO HOLY!!!! AND SO VERY MUCH IN LOVE WITH GOD!!! They really are just very giving. VERY.

Anyway, this one is about two other priests I've recently read about. Both having the same temptation, one proudly succumbing and leaving God, the other



The following, I think, is a bit unfair, but, it is included.

The dynamic between these two is Judas and Peter. The one is obstinant in his pride and sin, the other has contrition, and more importantly, obediance. He is to remain silent on the matter, and he does. His name is continually dragged through the mud, and he lets it be. He's said his peace.

I also like how Fr. Cutie let the temptation overcome him until he could no longer see straight, while Father Euteneur admitted his fail did not result in the sexual act (it could have been a passionate kiss for all we know) and he was NEVER ever considering leaving his ministerial priesthood. He admitted it got out of hand, he apologized to all concerned. He is remaining obedient.

May God have mercy on them both. I was upset at Fr. Cutie, disgusted even, until I read his e-mail exchange. I felt profoundly sorry for him.

"You can lie to yourself and your minions, you can claim that you haven't a qualm, but you NEVER can run from, nor hide what you've done from the eyes.....the very eyes of Notre Dame."

They are a priest forever. ...FOREVER. Whether in Heaven or Hell...FOREVER.
Hebrews 7:17

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Feria after the Epiphany, 2011

Yes, so, let me tell you the three little miracles that happened this day, as promised from two posts ago.

1. Got to St. Augustine's before Mass. Confessions were being heard. I was next in line and a young man was after me.

The person before me left, the lights went off, and Father stepped out of the confessional. I went to take a seat, and I think I prayed half-heartedly, because I was disconcerted that God did not want me.

The young man who was behind me came up to me while I was praying and said that Father will hear our confessions.

I think Father was waiting in the door jam and proceeded to go back in. I gave him some time and went in. And thanked him.

I made my confession , he absolved me, and asked me to send in the young man who was after me.

MIRACLE ONE: God made Himself availible to me via this Sacrament. Father was done (I think he thought there were no more penitants), but, he saw that there was still time and people needed to repent.

Then, later, time for Holy Communion. I was thinking about how, either on that Sunday or The Feast of the Circumcision, I had the opportunity to kneel on the marble step directly, not on a cusioned kneeler.

I waited.

THIS Friday, 1/7/11, God gave me a second chance and presented the humiliation to me again. I gratefully took it in Thanksgiving this time. :D :D :D :D :D

MIRACLE TWO: I had the opportunity, undeservedly, to commit and show God my love and adoration for Him. :D

After Mass, though, undeservedly, I was graced GRACED with TWO miracles, I just, couldn't really get my heart in prayer of Thanksgiving. I just couldn't....really commit to talking to God. I couldn't focus or really....feel like I was saying anything relevant.

After a while, Father was walking down the aisle to leave the church and I don't remember if he spoke first or if I did (probably he did) but, he knew I wanted to speak with him. He said that he could talk to other parishoners if I wanted to pray more. I told him I always want to pray more. (which is true, in front of the Blessed Sacrament, I do. I mean, how does one turn one's back on God? How does one say, 'Okay, enough for now, catch You later'?) "What's that?" he asked me, and I repeated myself. He said he would talk to other parishoners and just to come out when I was done.

Needless to say, I was exuberent in my prayer to God after that.

MIRACLE THREE: I'm not even sure. That I had the opportunity to speak with Father? THat I had a renewal in inspiration and adoration?

I do know, however, that I was very ungrateful, for some....stupid reason, before that third one, THOUGH I HAD NO RIGHT TO BE! WHY?!!! When God had ben so providing and outgoing to me twice before?!!!!!

I finished and went out to Father, and, well, you can read the other post for that, but, this night, three miracles in 90 minutes, two of them taking less than 30 seconds has helped me in the past few weeks.

God used Father to show His love for me.

...I just don't even know what to make of that.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Extreme Poverty & Perfekt Povertye

Hey Blog,

Incidentally, Father McCambridge was in the Navy, not the Marines.

Can't find my copye of "Piers Ploughman," so, I'm not sure if that's how it was spelled, but, that's where I got it from.

Anway, 38 years ago today, the United States decreed that women in this country have the choice and the right to kill their children as they wish.

Tulsa had a March for Life demonstration and speakers afterwards.

FSSP-Tulsa was there to represent at the march, at least in part.

Both priests were there and select parishoners.

Father Van der Putten was carrying the Vatican flag and Father McCambridge was carrying the American flag.

After the march, during the...I don't know, either a speaker or an introduction to the first speaker, I turned and looked towards Father Van der Putten (I was to his left, yards away, trying to get a better view...or any view of the person speaking), and he was looking up. It appeared that he was looking atop the flag he was carrying, to the top of the pole on which it was, where there was a cross. :) It was gold. He was just looking at it (or so it seemed to me), not smiling, maybe frowning, just...maybe...contemplating it or praying....or maybe his mind was blank...IF he was actually even looking at the cross, I don't know, but, it got me to look up at the cross and be...joyful.

I have so much respect for Father Van der Putten and admire him so much and didn't want to approach him for a while because I believe him to be such a very holy priest and I think I know why he and Father McCambridge make me so very happy:


In that order.

...And not just me, these men really do make it their entire existence to prepare people for God.

They prepare themselves for God. They love God, one can tell it in the way they offer the sacrifice of the Mass, the way they dress, the way they speak at their homilies, the way they make themselves avalible to their parishoners, they live for God and they die to themselves for God. They offer the Old Mass in this new age. They do this out of love and respect for God and His Church.

Let me stress...and His Church.

These men do not have to be FSSP priests. They can offer Latin Masses and be outside of the Church or offer the Mass in the OF as a parish priest.

But, they aren't. They are obeying the Pope fully and being reverent to God.

The whole thing about this epiphany I had on 1/22/11 was because of a conversation that happened on Thursday.

Father McCambridge needs to read up on some...sources to see if a particular interest I have is worthy of my time.

This interest I have is one that is shared and was brought to my attention by some friends.

I told one friend who (had been telling me how I'd enjoy this particular interest before I picked it up) about a conversation Father McCambridge & I had and how he's...uneasy about this regarding my spiritual good. I told him I have a book that brings religion into it and he asked me, "Does it have an Impramatur?"

She proceeded to tell me she thinks he's....nuts or something to that effect; she simultaneously scoffed at the idea and insulted God's priest (Lord have mercy) and that this isn't the 1950's, there isn't a list of banned books. There's social justice issues in Tulsa, my particular interest shouldn't be such a big deal.

The "social justice" thing made me cringe. "Social Justice" is a code phrase by liberal Catholics that inclines the need for various secular causes above the mission of the Church.

And that's why I love my priests, because they do not buy into that. :) Father made time for me because I wanted to talk to him. He is concerned about my soul and gives me what I need to make it into Heaven. I have the free will to accept or reject his councel.

(1/30/10): Let me again repeat: Father made time for MEEEEEEeee. He was concerned enough that I was kinda troubled about this to want to help me through it a bit (though, I wanted to share some things with him, to let him know). It's not that he wants to do something for some vague humanist idea for a group of people, he wants to help the individual person.

BUT, this isn't about Father McCambridge, no. Believe it or not, this blog is dedicated to Father Van der Putten. I am not as comfortable around him as I am Father McCambridge. Even tonight, calling them to try to figure something out, I'm pretty sure I was ranty and hysterical trying to convey something to FVdP, but, as soon as FMC came on the phone, the thing I was having trouble with was easier to explain to him.

I think Father Van der Putten is holier, but, I think Father McCambridge makes me holier. God has granted Father Van der Putten with charisma, but, Father McCambridge, I believe, has been graced with humility. I love them both. I, though I fight against it, trust them both.

I remember being at a breakfast one morning (for some reason, I actually stayed after Mass to go next door to the breakfast. I don't know what I was thinking), and though Father Byrne (I think) was the pastor, because of counsel Father Van der Putten (who was the assistant) gave me in the confessional, I asked if I could speak to him when I was done. He said yes. (I think it's just because I had spoken with him more I wanted his advice.) When I was done I went up to him and we walked out to the parking lot. I explained my situation, about working for less than minimum wage and serving and poverty. He told me that it would be okay for me to get a new job, if not told me to get a new job. "Humiliations will come," 'you don't have to look for them'. (I know he said that first part, I think he said the second. Or something like it.) And he was right! :) Now, I try, with the job I have, to make the most of my little crosses. :)

For a while, I will admit, to being angry/disturbed/distressed/defilent to Father because of something he said during a homily. Feast Day of St. Maria Goretti, 2009, even though there was more to it, he mentioned women in pants was immodest. Let me repeat: women should only be in skirts or dresses.


Oh, I was a'fumin'!

He was probably going on about femininity or something and relating to how his dad worked in a coal mine and how no men swore until the woman who was hired swore and how that opened up a Pandora's Box and how it doesn't matter that women can do what men can do. Also, women shouldn't even wear pants in their own homes in front of their husbands or children (probably not alone, either). Women should be feminine and although mini-skirts are immodest, they are still designed to attract men. He made the following statement: Mini-skirts are to fornication what pants are to sodomy.


I came home, went on Catholic Answers Forums, posted what he said, and made war with anybody who disagreed with me (I MEAN HOW VERY....GAH!!!), not that that was my intent. I didn't know if anybody WOULD disagree with me, and some people said I need a new priest. And, now, viewing that thread again recently, I am very sad to see all this and I hope those people have learned better, too.

The next week I asked him in the confessional if women wearing pants was immoral and again, he said yes, and explained some things. I didn't agree with him but I said alright.

The following week or two, I mentioned this, again, in the confessional, to the pastor. I told him I've researched it and that's not what the church teaches. (There's signs in the Vatican saying women can wear pants.) He said he'd talk to him (I had to tell him this again after he absolved me. He also told me to ignore that one thing Father said, but, not to look down on him, or something).

Father Van der Putten mentioned this from the pulpit two more times, I think (keep in mind, I was still wearing pants to Mass). GRRRRRRRRRR on my insides each time.

I was upset, distraught about it not only for the how DARE he tell me what to wear, but, I didn't have the funds at the time. Oh sure, I had a dress or two, but, I didn't want to wear them.

Funny thing, I got a job. I think at some point, mabye before or after I got a job, I said to myself if I get a job, I will get dresses/skirts ( <-- site I learned about when I first ranted against FVdP). I had a job for one and one-half months. The heat got to me one day, I was wearing black pants, and I decided then I would buy dresses/skirts.

Self-preservation got me to do God's Will.

It took less than one year since I heard the homily to do this.

I've since asked FVdP in the confessional about pants. He did say that women could wear them, but, there needs to be a good reason, like gardening or something. ....Not that I think I would go back to pants much. I have worn pajama bottoms, though....

Anyway, I think I need to conceed that even if God doesn't demand all women in skirts/dresses, He wants ME in them. He wouldn't have given FSSP-Tulsa FVdP if this wasn't the case....and the thing is, there is another Latin Mass Celebrated in Muscogee, which happens not only later, but, it's closer, but, I didn't like the layout of the church, nor how I couldn't half-kneel/half-sit due to the seating arrangements, so, I started getting up earlier to go to St. Augustine's.

Also, it's the only other parish I have actually belonged to besides St. Elizabeth Seaton in Orland. For all the church hopping/shopping I did, I never actually joined any....well, wait...maybe St. John Cantius, I get mail from them.

It's so very odd. It's like God loves me enough to want me to be here or something.

Anyway, continuing on with FVdP.

For two years, I think, but, I cannot be 100% positive, two years, though, I think on a Sunday in 2009 and Ash Wednesday 2010 (?), I went to confession, FVdP was listening, and each time he asked something like, "Have you decided what you're giving up for Lent"?


I mean, I had...half, maybe thought about it. Had a vague idea...ish. Father Van der Putten cared enough, CARED ENOUGH, to ask, and then....AND me through a workable least that first year...I don't remember if I had something better the second year.


Seriously, if anybody ever reads this, I want you to think about that. This man, this holy man, this priest, my spiritual father took the time to make sure that I was going to die to self for the season.

:D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

It was also through him that I learned about Ember Days. He made an announcement from the pulpit. I think it was Summer or Fall 2010. Yes, I know, I've been at that church since 2009, (but not frequently) and St. John Cantius, and this was the first time I heard about Ember Days.

Another thing asked of me from the confessional: Are you saying your morning prayers?

He cares about my relationship with God. He cares enough to make sure I HAVE a relationship with God. He cares that I talk and go to God often, and meditate on Him, and have recourse from the devil.

He's asked me this question a few times, I think.

Once, the following conversation (or spirit of it) transpired:

Me: I cross myself

FVdP: *scoffing and sardonic* That's a prayer?!

Me: *high pitched and defensive, and sounding like a three year old* It's a prayer! (It's hard to capture in text).

FVdP: *scoffing and sardonic* So, what is that? You give God 2 seconds?

Me: Three to five.

FVdP: And your night prayers?

Me: I give a little more during my night prayers.

FVdP: What? Five seconds?

Me: Ten to twelve.

He then put me on a regiment of prayers. I don't know how long I kept it up, but, I've since abandoned practically all. I do my Morning Offering (but, that's more now because of FMC), and, if I remember, say three Hail Mary's in the morning for purity and three at night for final perseverance.

Also asked of me in the confessional (are you noticing a patern?), at least, I think this is what caused the reply: Are you saying your daily Rosary?

--Father, I don't really have a devotion to it/I don't really like the Rosary.

FVdP: It's not about you.

My soul: :D :D :D :D :D

That really is the best thing I could ever hear besides the words of absolution and what the priest says when distributing the Eucharist.

I have never forgotten that and I hope I never will.

Also asked in the confessional was about work or shopping on a Sunday. (Not good...generally). I also asked, 'What about if one goes to the Vigil Mass on a Saturday, does one not shop or do work that day?'

FVdP: The Vigil is an abomination! (again, hard to transcribe. He didn't yell it, but, he raised his voice and the pitch of his voice. I think he said that the Bishop has said as such...)

Another time, I asked if I was profaning the Lord's Day by watching Brit-coms with double-entendre's and such.

FVdP (mumbling, if I recall correctly): You shouldn't be watching those, anyway....

And, during the interruption of the Mass, the announcements and the homily, FVdP has said the following:

About the children learning their catechism, which, they need to do at an accelerated rate: You will learn the prayers or *ominously and deeply into the microphone* You. Will. Pay.

:D :D :D :D :D

ALSO, there is a poem he repeats ad nauseum.

Mr. Business went to Mass/He did it every Sunday./Mr. Business went to hell/For what he did on Monday.

He wants his flock to understand coming to Mass once a week doesn't cut it. We need to live it. We need to be Catholic 24/7.

Also, I love how, when I taught 2nd/3rd graders their CCD, I was told not to mention hell and yet, Father is not only mentioning it, but, it's in verse form, so all can remember. There are newborns and there are senior citizens at Mass; Father is being charitable to all by mentioning hell and reminding us there is a hell.

Last thing, the beginning of the Mass procession earlier this month. I was in line for confession....I suppose one realizes that's a reoccuring theme....anyway, I was in line for confession and debating whether I should mention one thing or not before the bell was rung, and I remember watching it, because I was in the back and had a clear view; the cesure youth kinda half rolled his eyes and his face showed that wherever he was, he wasn't at the Mass at that time.

The next....6....youths, I want to say, processed with their candles.

There were four young boys and Father. Father was in the back, behind the young boys.

He saw that the young boys were going to proceed to follow the youths too closely.

Father flew, he swooped in, and placed the talons of death on the boys' shoulders, looking down (I wouldn't have guessed his eyes open if I didn't know better), until it was the right time for them to proceed.

Father respects the Mass, Father loves God, Father wanted things PERFECT, because God deserves no less.

I thank God for a priest to remind me of that.

Incidentally, when I saw this, I kinda had this interior thing about if Father will not hold anything back from the Mass and give 100% to it, as It deserves it, I have the courage to confess all (or at least inquire) during the sacrement I was going to receive.

Father really is quite inspirational.

Thank you, God, for your priests.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

God's Few, God's Humble, God's Priests

He must increase, I must decrease.

Hey Blog,

I've been meaning to get in touch with you for a while. Remind me to share with you my epiphany about Christmas and Sex. No, seriously, you'll like it.

But, that's not why I'm here tonight, Blog. I'm here because of...well, I should probably write about God's graces as well, but, my intent was to write on a priest and his actions.

It's good. One never hears anything good about priests, EVER, but, oh my gosh, I can't believe this happened.

Alright, I think I'm going to save God's graces for another day (interestingly enough, the three occurances happened this same day....AND, because of this same priest).

Of course, as with all my writtings, a little (more) exposition: Feast of the Circumcision of Our Lord, 2011, Fr. Van Der Putten, in his homily, urged all to make the New Year's Resolution to assist at one more Mass per week than one is obligated. He said they offer Masses at 7:00 and 8:00, and surely, people can make time before work to come to one of those Masses, and if not, he will gladly offer a 0600 Mass.

Knowing I live 2 hours away, and work an hour fifteen, one and one-half hours away, I knew that was impossible. ...


There is a Friday evening Mass offered at 1900. If I leave work on time, I could get there, probably by 1800, but, this has never happened. I have gone before, though.

BUT, surely, this urging of the priest, excludes me....I mean, I live two hours away! That's, like, another, like, $80-$90 gas/month. I can do an extra Mass once a month (which, he also mentioned in his homily is not enough), but once a week is just too much.

I was almost on the verge of tears because of this. I KNOW, it is not binding, per say; the priest cannot MAKE us do this in any way....but, it's not for nothing he's saying to do this. BUT, I mean, c'mon, SURELY, ~I~ am the exception, ~I~ get a dispensation from this.

And after wrestling with my conscience:

Conscience: You have somewhere better to be?
Me: .......
Conscience: You have something better to do?
Me: .......
Conscience: You going to put something above Jesus, really? When He's CLEARLY allowing an option for you?
Me: >_<
Conscience: You think God wont provide with the money? Of all the things you're going to skimp on, Mass? There's NO where else one can allow for exceptions in one's budget?
Me: ARGGHHH! (sound of my will breaking)
Conscience: :) :D :)

So I was at Mass on Friday (we'll see how long this lasts. I also made NYR to 1. Pray the Rosary everyday, 2. Pray to the Sacred Heart everyday, 3. Pray to St. John the Baptist everyday), and afterwards, while I was still kneeling in prayer, I spoke with Fr. McCambridge walking out the door, who allowed me to stay to pray some more and he could talk to other parishoners. He knew I needed to speak with him (I think I called him and he hadn't responded) and I told him so. He knew.

1. He offered to wait for me.
After a while, I finished and I went out to see him where he was talking with two other men. Kind of on cue, they left.

He and I went inside the small area between the doors that lead outside and the doors that lead to the church part of the church.

2. He made himself avalible to me.

We spoke (more on this later...possibly).

3. He even offered to go WAY out of his way for me.

Anyway, when he was done counseling me, he offered to give me a blessing. ( :D :D :D ) After he gave me a blessing, he asked me where I'm parked and said that it's not the safest neighbourhood so, he offered to walk me to my car. (I half thought this was unnecessary because, well, like, I'm invincible.... I don't know, it's like, nothing has happened before, it's like God is watching out for us who go to Mass there....I don't know...I've never had a problem before...even in the dark (of course, there were other people still there those times.))

I said it's funny he says that because whenever I mention Mass, people always ask me the one 5 minutes away (because I am so blessed to live 5 minutes away from a Catholic Church ( :D )), or the one in Tulsa, because they all know it's the "bad" part of Tulsa. "But, so far so good," or something like that.

He gave me a queer look and said, "Well let's keep it that way."

He opened the doors to the church part of the church, probably knelt in front of the tabernacle, turned off the lights, and knelt again in front of the tabernacle. I was against the door, holding it open all this time.

We step outside, he gets his keys and fumbles with them, checking them in the light to see which key is the one needed to lock the door. As he locks the door, I start walking towards my car. He quickly catches up and walks on my left side, the side between me and the street (though, there is grass and a gate that seperates the small parking lot and the street). I thought that was rather chivalrous and gallant, for lack of better terms.

We make small talk about the weather and such and I get to my car (I notice the car he drove has a pro-life bumper sticker and "Neutrons have Mass?! I didn't even know they were Catholic!" I love puns, but, that is lame.).

I tell him my house is half decorated like Hogwarts from the Harry Potter universe but I tried to keep it not tacky and he laughs. :)

4. He waits for me to get in my car.

5. I then notice, he's behind my car, near his car, watching me, waiting to see if my car will start, I guess.

I then leave, thanking God for him almost the entire way home.

Him walking me to my car is something I cannot get over. This happened on 1/7/11 and here it is, the Commemoration of the Baptism of Our Lord, 1/13/11, and it still touches me. I think it inspired me to be a better and more selfless Catholic this week. Like I said, I thought it was odd yet chivalrous and gallant at first, but, then I thought about it more and more (how could one not?!) and this is what occured to me (the next day, I think): This priest did the most in persona Christi thing that anybody has ever done for me (to my knowledge), firstly, and secondly, he was very in persona Christi in general.

Did he walk me to my car just to be nice, NO! he walked me to my car, without regard to his safety, nay, he walked to my car with total abandonment for his safety. He could have walked on my other side, his car was on the other side of mine (across from mine, on the other side of the small parking lot), but, he walked on my left side. If something was going to happen to me, he wasn't going to permit it. He was going to be in the way of anything; if something was to befall me, it would target him first. He was RIGHTBY my side, blocking me (as much as a very tall, very lean man could). Whatever may have happened to me that night (I'm still holding I would have been fine....but, I'm not going to say no to a priest who wants to walk me to my car), Father McCambridge was going to ...sacrifice... himself so that I would be okay.

I mean, yes, it's grand that he has given me absolution and the Eucharist, more so than I know, but, this was ...practical. This was...real. This was tangible. This is, like, really, the message of the Gospel. This is the graces that absolution and the Eucharist bestow so that one can die to self and live for Christ.

THEN, it occurs to me days later, NOT ONLY did he act in persona Christi, he was very much acting as my Father. He was going to protect his child at all costs. He was going to make sure she wasn't left stranded, either. I mean, if I was going to die that night, THEN would have been the perfect time, I had received the Eucharist AND gotten a blessing from a priest. My soul was good to go, but, no, Father McCambridge was going to protect and defend my body that night.

I think he may have even followed me part of the way home (I'm pretty sure I noticed his car going up one off-ramp while mine went down another), but, that may have been coincidence.

He went way out of his way for me. WAY out. Not only physically, but, the things he offered to do for me, should the need arise. No regard for himself (or, at least, that's how it seems to me).

And the thing is, it wasn't personal; he would do the same for any of his children or any of God's children.

Father McCambridge was in the Marines. I don't know if he was a Marine or a chaplin for them, but, it wouldn't surprise me if he was trained to fight for his country, just because he is so fit and orderly and seemingly disciplined.

He defended one of this Country's daughters, and, for that, by this post, I salute him.

Thank you, Father McCambridge. You are in my prayers.

Thank you, Holy Trinity, one God, for creating this man,
Thank you Holy Trinity, one God, for calling him to the priesthood,
Thank you Holy Trinity, one God, for sending him to Tulsa,
Thank you Jesus for giving him Your Sacred Heart.
Thank you Jesus for giving him Your Sacred Heart to give to others.