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Monday, October 20, 2008

Too Poor to be Catholic?

We must love our nothingness, and think only of the All which is infinitely lovable.
--St Therese

After all my griping about no money and the cost of parish dinners, I retreated to my prayer buddy to see what she would say about all my worries. And I see, once again, that being too concerned with what other people have and can do and that creeping feeling of 'I don't belong' can be easily combatted by humility....and a chance to say, "Yeah, I am a little bit of nothing...but I love my nothingness because it allows me to concentrate on Him".

I am amazed at how easily I can slip into "I don't belong here'. All I have to do is see the cost of the Annual Parish Dinner, realize it is out of my league this year and the gloom and doom starts to creep around the edges of my world. I am a failure...I put so many houses and cars up my nose....now I have to drive 2 hours to a job that is all about the future and makes me tired and grumpy now....instant gratification, where art thou? I forget, that I am lucky to be alive and I am grateful to be sober. I forget, that I have a loving and merciful God who is happy I am going to Mass and Confession and receiving Him in the Eucharist. I forget, that my nothingness is everything to Him.

I think that my remnants of Original Sin manifest in the need to feel necessary and useful to a human being - in other words, where is my parade for doing the right thing?

Joyce is drinking again. She is a sponsee I love dearly but she refuses to go the extra mile necessary to get sober. Instead, she makes claims that she is a victim of domestic violence but if I try to talk to her about solutions to her problems she gets very angry and refuses to talk about it. I have to allow her to not accept help, I know. However, it saddens me to watch someone die in front of my eyes when help is so close and available.

Life is never easy, and I understand that my sufferings are nothing compared to the sufferings of Catholics in Iraq or Dafur. I know that life as I know it is easy and safe and loving and kind....and so I recognize that my biggest defect of character is whining and wishing for more.

How much more can I be given? His abundance is amazing. Someone like me should be dead and buried...and what I know today is that, through the Sacramental Life offered to me by the Church HE founded, I have been granted a life that is second to none.

And for that, I am eternally grateful.

Venerable Matt Talbot, pray for Joyce. Intercede for her that she may find her way to sobriety.

St Max Kolbe, pray for Joyce. Intercede for her that she may find her way to the happiness that comes with conquering her alcoholism, one day at a time.

Our Lady of Victory, pray for Joyce....and show her the way to your Son. For all healing comes from Him...and I fear she is so far away she cannot hear His voice.

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