You're not alone. I haven't taken Communion for a while for reasons. Yet I attend. It's good for me, instills the habit of prayer .. and after three years and change of being Catholic it doesn't feel right if I don't go.
I've had two awkward moments: both times young men I know have helpfully tapped me on the shoulder to remind me everyone else in the pew is up and on their way.
2/2 So that some are lit and others are not. I see myself in mass looking to the side and seeing myself attending at another time. All masses being one same mass. Interconnected. The more one misses, the more... gaps... are on the tapestry. It weakens it. Makes it uncertain, perilous.
I don't subscribe to the idea that sins are sins by nature, but rather by their resulting effect on the sinner. I try to find coherence to the church's teachings and dogmas.
(1/2) It had been bothering me: How is it that simply missing mass is a MORTAL sin? It seems a bit convenient, doesn't it? That the organization that depends financially on our attendance makes our attendance mandatory in the highest order... So, I've been meditating. I haven't figured it out 100% yet, but, there, in back of my mind, I think it has to do with time. How it isn't linear from a divine point of view. More like a tapestry upon which numerous heptagons are stitched, each a week.
I know I should, but I don't, go confess. I need to sit with a priest and hash out a plan to take holy communion despite my circumstances. Otherwise, I don't even attend mass. I know, intellectually, that there is a point to attending even without communion, but I just can't get myself to do it. The humiliation of staying in my seat while people shuffle past me to take the Eucharist. That awkward moment is dread.
On my drive to work this morning, while praying the Sorrowful Mysteries, it occurred to me that they, too are a progression.
I. In the garden, Jesus has mental anguish. His suffering, in part, is existential, in expectation of what is to come, and in sadness for all of us, our sins, our trials, our failures, our pains.
II. In the pillar, the suffering becomes physical. His body, lashed, bleeding, bruised, rendered.
III. He is mocked. There even are racist undertones to being called King of the Jews. The suffering of being dehumanized, of standing before our brothers and being rejected regardless of our well-intentions. The pain of not being able to connect at a human level; Of having those with power over us, abuse it; Of being trapped in an unjust power structure that robs people of their freedom, respect, and dignity.
IV. The pain of utter isolation. Walking to his death, though surrounded by a sea of humanity, he is alone. Yes there were respites on His way, but that is why they, even after 2,000 years, are those mercies commemorated.
V. Death. With death, He completes the full spectrum of human suffering.
Saw this quoted on birdsite and it hit home for me... I need to focus more on doing vs. planning:
"The devil frequently fills our thoughts with great schemes, so that instead of putting our hands to what work we can do to serve our Lord, we may rest satisfied with wishing to perform impossibilities."
St. Teresa of Avila
One of the local churches celebrates the Latin mass every Friday. I highly recommend the experience. It brings back a sheer sense of sacredness. Specially the high mass where the entire rites are sung. The priest faces away from the congregation, keeping the focus strictly where it should be. I don't go, unless I am freshly confessed and know I can take communion. I feel unworthy any other way.
Today I was thinking about the second luminous mystery in relation to the question: why do we pray? It has been explained that Mary changed the course of God's plan by requesting Jesus perform the miracle (water to wine at the wedding). So, are we attempting the same through our requests? Or are we trying to prepare ourselves to accept God's will through our prayers? I really don't know the answer. Prayer changes us, but does it change the course of natural events?
Or another way of looking at the third mysteries: How the divine seems through worldly eyes.
Just as the crown of heaven is turned to thorns and mockery on earth, so is the highest king born under the most humble of circumstances.
The perfectly just society of the kingdom is as twisted as that crown of thorns in this world full of suffering and abuses.
Lastly, the coming of the Holy Spirit first is cause for alarm, a violent wind. But just as that wind, the mysteries at last, transform us.
Taking each of the third mysteries we can see the divine being translated into the earthly:
Joyous: The birth of Christ - Where we see God take on a form that will function in this world.
Luminous: The Kingdom - This is the promise of a worldly society that will become divine in its characteristics.
Sorrowful: The Crown of Thorns - Here we see the form the heavenly crown takes in this world.
Glorious: Pentecost (or the Descent of the Holy Spirit) - Well, this is the most literal.
Today I'll be praying the Luminous Mysteries. I've always liked the progression:
First Mystery is about baptism, a sacrament which is about the one person.
Second Mystery is about marriage, a sacrament that unites 2 people who will then procreate to be many.
Third Mystery is about community (the Kingdom).
Fourth Mystery brings in the supernatural world and our relationship to it.
Fifth Mystery goes one step further, is about the communion with our God.
Picture of the rosarydeck.com
For years, I'd been deep into the #tarot . Though it has been a very long time since I stopped using it, I still felt that there was value in it. Not because of any predictive abilities, but rather, because in discerning meaning, it provided a space to meditate.
Where I am:
Since I am divorced and remarried, I really don't get to take the Eucharist under regular circumstances, so I don't feel it is productive for me to go to mass. I haven't attended in a few months now. I really hate going if I can't take the Eucharist. I mean, that is the whole point of the mass.
Though I know it is just procrastination: I keep putting off starting the annulment since I know it is a bureaucratic process. I am certain my previous marriage is invalid.
Although new to Mastodon, I decided to launch an instance when I couldn’t easily find any dedicated to religion, prayer, or Catholic viewpoints. I hope to share what I’ve learnt, and explore further. I’d love to engage with thoughtful individuals with differing paradigms.
Please: Do not pre-judge me based on my strong religious beliefs. I feel silly saying it, but I am not what you think.
Admin of RosaryFaith instance, creator of the RosaryDeck.com , member of the Rosary Cofraternity, and struggling Catholic
A Mastodon instance concerned generally with the topic of religion or more specifically Catholicism. Everyone with an open mind welcome regardless of religion, belief system, or lack thereof.