Thursday, July 31, 2014

Anti-Catholic bigotry at the Soup Kitchen

Corporal Works of Mercy

In my city, there is a place to go for a meal when you have no money to pay for it. For some of us (including me), that’s pretty often.
Especially now that I have no kitchen or home.
This program --- and all the volunteers who make it happen --- is quite a blessing, obviously.
The only requirement is that you have to be there on time, and times are pretty strict. I am not a newbie to this meal. Even when we had a home, we had to go there sometimes. My kids grew up knowing this place. My kids and I have gone there at various frequencies since 1983.
Further, there are times when we have stand in line to wait for the meal to be served. I try to pray the Rosary while the Rosary is  in my pocket, so that nobody will notice much. 
I can't just stand there without doing anything, or my arthritic knees will distract me with pain.
 I always make the Sign of the Cross and say a silent prayer before eating my meal. I try to be as discreet as possible, lest someone accuse me of "proselytizing."
But, I do have to make the Sign of the Cross at the end of each decade, of course, for the Glory Be (Doxology).


Pagan at the Table

A couple of years ago, a man seated at my table noticed that I made the Sign of the Cross before beginning to eat. He started a conversation with others at the table about how he wanted to ask the bishop about his (the bishop's) wife. I was kind of hungry, and not really interested in what anyone had to say, mostly. Just enjoying my food, and thankful to have it.
It took me a few minutes, to finally realize that this man was making these remarks for my benefit -- apparently because I had made the Sign of the Cross. He started talking about how horrible it was that there was an Egyptian obelisk in the Vatican. He said that this object should not be in the Vatican because it was "pagan" and it meant that Catholics worship the sun.
He and some other "sola scriptura" fans at my table --- all in agreement regarding the obelisk at the Vatican --- started arguing amongst themselves about the role of women apostles in the early Church, as well as a few other things. Each had her or his favorite quote from Scripture that meant something different or similar, according to each claim.
Ironic, right?
The sola scriptura crowd couldn't finish the meal before breaking down into factions.


Nobody Likes a Tattler, but . . .

That obelisk incident was the first time that this man had an anti-Catholic rant. I reported this to the administrator of the meal program --- who happens to be Catholic. That wasn't the issue, though. The program has a rule that diners are supposed to be respectful to others, regardless of religion, or lack thereof. (The program is privately funded.)
He agreed with me that this was unacceptable.
The anti-Catholic guy did not harass me anymore, although I also tried not to let him see me making the Sign or the Cross, or saying the Rosary.
Until a year ago, when this man started up again. I actually started to cry this time. The administrator of the program came out to me as I stood on the sidewalk. He said, “Mitch bothering you again?”
I said, “Yes.”
The administrator said, “I think he used to be married to somebody Catholic.”
I said, “I guess she was mean.”
I have not heard anything from Mitch ever since. He claims to be a preacher. He has his own ecclesial community, which he calls a "church." He always has his Bible with him, and receives calls during the meal.


The Sixty-Four $ ?

So, my question is this:  Should I stop saying the Rosary while waiting, because I have to make the Sign of the Cross during the Glory Be?
Or, should I just say it anyway, but not make the Sign or the Cross at all? (I don't care much for that option, to tell the truth. I feel that I should not say any Rosary at all, rather than do it half-baked.)
So, if I stop making the Sign of the Cross for the Rosary, should I also stop making the Sign of the Cross before beginning my meal? (Or, perhaps do that when I'm sitting at the same table with Mitch? But normally just say it anyway? Nobody else seems to care, or even notice.)
Maybe I should just say a silent prayer? But, the Sign of the Cross is very public, and not silent.
Although, nobody seems to mind except this alleged "preacher" or "minister."
God bless. 

Saturday, July 19, 2014

The Carmelite Martyrs of Compi├Ęgne

I never knew anything about the Carmelite Martyrs until today, because there was a page about them in that very nice publication that I wrote about before, called Give Us This Day:  Daily Prayer for Today’s Catholic.
During the Reign of Terror, it was illegal to be Catholic.
 “ . . . in July 1794 sixteen nuns were arrested on the charge of continuing their illicit way of life and imprisoned in a former Visitation convent.”
Here is an excellent article and story about the Carmelite Martyrs. This is by Matthew E. Bunson, the editor of The Catholic Answer. This article appeared in the April 2007 issue of Catholic Answer.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Our Lady of Mount Carmel

Today, July 16th, is the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.

I am enrolled, but have not had a scapular for a long time, so this is a good reminder for me to get one.

I know it's good to wear the scapular, but I know very little otherwise, about Carmel. I need to learn more, and it looks like the Wikipedia page is pretty good, at least they have some bibliographical resources to look up, which I must do soon, but it's almost time to get out of here for today.

This article also looks pretty good, written by a Carmelite. I found it on the Wikipedia page, but have not yet read it myself. I just had to include something regarding whose feast it is today.

Yesterday, I was wondering why I have no statues of the Blessed Mother. I had a very sad day, and was praying at my relative's room, but I realized it would have been so much better to have had a statue of Our Lady, or Our Lord,or any of many saints,of course.

Because I love worshipping statues, as we Catholics all do, right?

God bless. 



Don't Worry.

~~~~ St. Padre Pio

Apparel --- again!

I recently read an article about women who wear "veils" at Mass and chapel.

This article neglected to explain that there is no longer a rule stating that women must wear a head covering at Mass, or before the Blessed Sacrament.

Apparently many younger women are waxing poetic over these things -- as if the outward sign were the important thing.

And, that's what bothers me about these folks who are too young to remember when girls HAD to have their heads covered.

That mostly meant you wore a hat to Mass.

But, there would be times when you had to duck into the chapel, or into the church for Confession, etc., during a weekday.

So, you had to have your obligatory little "chapel veil" -- essentially a doily, inside a plastic case with with a snap closure. There were fancier cases, of course, but I personally couldn't ever afford those, so it was only the see-through plastic with the snap for me.

Jackie Kennedy started wearing the longer veil, --- mantilla --- after the First Family's return to the U.S.from their trip to Spain. Jack and Jackie both had very large heads. Jack was the first president to go hatless.

Before Jackie brought that thing to the U.S., nobody had ever heard of it --- outside of Spain.

In 1963, St. John the Baptist High School and Church were in the same building as our Notre Dame teaching nuns' convent. The church was downstairs. The high school was upstairs. The convent was both, I think. One of our teaching nuns --- our English teacher, actually --- got permission to take a desk into the convent from the school. She asked us (all-female) students to please help her move it.

It was pretty solid hardwood, with drawers, and really heavy. It took a lot of girls to move the thing. Maybe eight of us. We had to take it through the church to get to the convent.

We got a grip on the thing, and lifted it.

Just as we were about to enter the church, I thought, "Uh oh!!"

We have nothing on our heads, but then I figured, well, maybe Sr. won't worry about it this time. Should I keep my mouth shut, and risk letting all of us commit a venial sin, or should I squeal, and maybe the others would be mad at me.

Just then, Sr. turned around and said, "Girls --- you have nothing on your heads! Where are your chapel veils?"

Our chapel veils were in our purses, which were in the school, which was on the second floor. Sr. got out a little pack of Kleenex, and said we should "wear" those, just for the time being, but we had no bobby pins to make them stay on (as we would normally have in our see-through plastic envelopes, with the chapel veil), so they didn't stay on while we moved the desk. They just kind of floated away.

Sr. led the way, but she did not look back anymore.

An author for Catholic Herald of the U.K., writes "But, by and large, [mantillas --- or is it chapel veils??] transformed most women. You acquired instant mystique by wearing them"

Well, that's what she thinks.

The next few sentences of this paragraph are actually somewhat obscene. Maybe some folks need a little reminder of why we GO TO MASS!?

No, not just because we have to --- although we do have to.

We're not going to Mass for ourselves.

It's called the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Those words have meaning. You're not supposed to be sitting at Mass thinking of how saucy you look.

Underground Rooftop, Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Well, I noticed a small outdoor space which didn't seem to be used by anyone, for anything. It's on the roof of a garage.

It gets a lot of sun each day, so I started wondering if a container garden might work there. Spring is such a blessing, especially after that ghoulish winter we just had.

I have some veggies on this rooftop now, and a few flowers. All in containers.

I don't know if nobody noticed it, or what. It's not my property, and I didn't ask or tell.

I don't think many property owners would just destroy it, even if not authorized., although the property owner has that right.

So, I usually try to water everything before the sun comes up, because the roof is next to a small parking lot. I don't want to be conspicuous.

This morning, I got there much later than I should have. I heard a male voice ask me a couple of questions about the plants, which I answered somewhat abruptly. I have a tendency to get friendly and chatty, but needed to get the h2o' ing done and get out of here. Didn't want to risk discovery.

When I looked down (I was on roof level) at the owner of this male voice, I recognized the editor of a magazine with worldwide circulation. When I realized who he was, I said hi, and his first name. I guess he was turned off by my unfriendly disposition, so he just kept walking, which was probably better for me anyway.

Now I'm hoping he doesn't tell the world about how nasty I was. Or do I hope that?

Maybe I hope that he doesn't write an article which will enable the property owner to identify the rooftop in question.

I don't really know what I'm hoping for, except perhaps some nice, fresh tomatoes and a few other veggies. And pretty flowers.

It's actually quite demeaning to have to live like some sort of refugee or criminal when you are sixty six years old, and had been a perfect tenant for nine years, and a perfect Section 8 recipient for eighteen years, and never did anything wrong.

Of course, I must offer everything up for the souls in Purgatory, and I do, as much as possible. But, you're supposed to have a joyous attitude when you offer things up, or it doesn't count.

Not sure if I do it right?

Here is a small article from Scott Richert's Catholicism page on About dot com, explaining a little bit about offering up for the souls in Purgatory. (Scott calls them "holy souls," but I've also read about the "poor souls in Purgatory." I will have to look that one up.)  Of course, Holy Mother Church dedicates the entire month of November to the dead, but we should remember them every day.

Scott's article includes this quote from our Retired Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI:

Truthfully, the Church invites us to pray for the dead every day, offering also our sufferings and difficulties that they, once completely purified, might be admitted to enjoy the light and peace of the Lord for all eternity.

But, it is an injustice that must be repaired, and I'm still working on it, but can't publish my plans yet.

Here's a link to my blog that explains how I came to be homeless.

The link is also on my page entitled, "My Blogger Blog and Me," in this blog. It should be under the list of "pages," which is apparently different from a regular post.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Sunday, July Sixth, 2014

The first reading today was from the Prophet Zechariah.

I'm thinking Zaccaria --- as in St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria, whose feast was yesterday, July 5th --- is the Italian version of Zechariah?

Zachary, here in the U.S.?

There is an interesting Wikipedia page about the name Zechariah. Probably no need for a link?

At least I don't think :-)


I would never be caught dead in a skirt.

Literally.---  I mean, even in my coffin.

If you want to know why, read (or see a performance of) St. Joan, by George Bernard Shaw. I remember watching this play on Playhouse 90, back in the early days of television. Or, perhaps it was one of those other great television drama shows.

Speaking of St. Joan:  If you have read my page called, "My Blogger Blog and Me," you may know that I was baptized at St. Joan of Arch Church in Philadelphia, Pa.

It appears that St. Joan of Arc does not exist anymore? At least they include an address and a phone number to obtain records.

When I was little, girls couldn't go downtown in pants or slacks, which was why I didn't like going downtown so much. Then, there were those white gloves. . .

Saturday, July 5, 2014

July 5th, 2014: First Saturday. Feast of St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria.

From Salve Maria Regina  website.

July 5, 2014. Today is the First Saturday of the month.


Here are three (in honor of the Blessed Trinity -- or is it because I'm too lazy to find more?) websites about the First Saturday Devotion, including how to make it:

  1. First Saturday Devotion, at Daily Catholic dot org.
  2. The great promise of the five first Saturdays, at Salve Regina dot org. 
  3. An instructional article from EWTN's newsletter, "WINGS  

♥~*~♥~*~♥~*~♥~*~*~*~♥~♥~*~*~♥~*~♥~♥~*~♥~*♥~*♥~*~♥~*~*♥~ ♥

Today is also the feast of Saint Anthony Mary Zaccaria.

I learned of St. Anthony Mary last week or so, when Scott Richert on Catholicism.about/com posted the novena to St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria on his newsletter.

St. Anthony Zaccaria died when he was only thirty six years old. This website has the entire novena, on one page, along with more information about the life and history of St. Anthony.
The Feast of St. Benedict is next week.