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BarbaraTherese

Private Vows in The Laity/Spirituality

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

I will be "sending" you a spiritual bouquet for this blessed day :flowers: :amen:

 

Thank you very much, BM! :) :) :)

I think that dUSt is creating problems for us by dismantling the PM system, or whatever he did or has done or will do.  I accessed your profile, BM, and tried to send you a message, but the link on your profile would not open.

At this point for me, the Home Mass is still very much about organizational matters.  I am looking forward to the 22nd July immensely.

Radio silence will commence on 22.7.14 - Memorial of St Mary Magdalene............I will give another nudge probably 24 hrs before the 22nd.

 

Countdown 29days 3hrs

 

 

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

Unable to visit our nuns in Carmel today.  They are now living on the coast on the other side of Adelaide.  Sister phoned me around 9am to say that the weather their way was very wild with high winds.  I had a fair walk for me from the bus stop to their residence and Sister thought it best we look at our forecast and try to pick a better day next week sometime.  It was threatening storm here where I am too. Later in the day it did get rather wild with some high winds and rain.

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AnneLine    5,190
AnneLine

Praying for you, BarbaraTherese... now and throughout your prep period and Vow Day.... praying....

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TheresaThoma    2,286
TheresaThoma

BT Sounds like everything is coming together! I will be praying for you during your retreat and on the actual day as well of course.

Keep riding out these waves!

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

Thank you very much, AL.  It is prayer that is carrying me through the preparation - and will carry me through the day itself and beyond.

 

Thank you to all who are praying for me.

 

Truth is, I think if I had realized all that was going to unfold prior to the actual Home Mass and including what is involved in the Mass in the home itself - I never would have had the courage go through with it it in the first place.  In fact last night before I drifted off to sleep I was turning over in my mind how I could pull the plug without putting myself in a really bad light.  Daylight saw reason.  It is a real blessing from God that we do not know what is going to unfold with our days.  At each point, however, we are given the Grace of The Holy Spirit to meet that challenge and move on to the next one as we journey.  When I was in religious life in my teens my director told me that I was excellent in putting all matters into God's Hands.  But then not long after I would point out to The Lord, "With this You must do this, with that You must do that".  The Lord was indeed lucky, and sometimes this still applies, to be in the driver's seat more than 2 mins before His backseat driver took over!!!

 

Father John is having me do all the organisational type of tasks; whereas, I would much prefer to pass it all on to him.  No deal!!!

It is not, mind you, a problem with having a Home Mass - it is a problem of "Barbara" and her distinct leaning towards HER OWN concept of perfection and being unhappy and dissatisfied with less - and on all levels.  I have much to learn indeed from St Therese of Lisieux insofar as such as I am able.

 

Must admit that I have an urge to laugh when I recall the words of St Augustine "Late have I loved Thee".  Oh man, I am getting awful close to 69yrs of age, still with my P Plates on and leaving St A for absolutely dead!!!

 

As I have been meeting each challenge along this particular journey, I have reflected that in religious life things are so much easier with everything a long established ritual and with many to help out with the fine detail.  But I have further reflected that in every journey and no matter one's call and vocation sufficient is present to make great saints of us all.  It depends on response to those challenges and that is where I keep falling down - but The Lord is full of Love and Mercy.,,,,and so I am able to rise again.  Hence, I praise and thank Him profusely for Catholic theology and for the lives of our saints in which something of that theology is actually lived out - and as an example to us all wherever we may be able.

 

I read something somewhere that has really had an impact on me in that it is such a simple and beautiful explanation of a profound theology in Catholicism i.e. The Direct and The Permissive Will of God and an explanation that is not complex, spot on, and without definition of either Direct nor Permissive and yet embracing them both..  It ran something like this.........in all events, God is inviting us to experience something - and this is also a completely new experience of the Presence of God.

 

...........and so.......... merrily on we all go............  :)

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

BT Sounds like everything is coming together! I will be praying for you during your retreat and on the actual day as well of course.

Keep riding out these waves!

 

Thank you very much, TT.  There just are not words for the gratitude and thanksgiving I give for those who are praying for me.  Thank you........... :)  My own daily prayer is with all but particularly those who of their generosity pray for me.

I think I might be riding the waves.  Have you every been in the sea when it is rough (my Dad was a sailor with a sailboat and loved the sea - though he used to say "The sea is b***h, take good care").  The problem in rough seas, is that as you ride the wave, you know that there is another one on the way and have no idea whether it will be a bigger wave or an easy ride.  But I think that is far too dramatic - far too dramatic - for this preparation period for the Mass.  But I have taken comfort in that one of our saints, forget who she was, was terribly disturbed I think before temporary vows, so much so that her superior was a bit reluctant to let her make the vows.  She did make them -  and all went well.  These examples from the lives of our saints may not repeat in our own life point by point, but one can grasp the underlying dynamic and that is that where a big event in one's life is concerned, there might be a see saw of a ride to the event, perhaps a very disturbing ride - but keep the event as prime and ride it all out because with Grace one indeed can.  All is well, all is well and all will be well (St Julian of Norwich).

 

........and now more needless drama! :paperbag:

 

For me personally, it is the 'coming out the closet' that is very scary. But being scared is in the imagination and only the unfoldings can reveal the reality.  I was a reader in our parish, but one had to go up three steps and stand in the rostrum to read.  First step, I wasn't too bad but by the third I was almost a nervous wreck.............because I felt I was in some sort of limelight standing so far above everyone else. I eventually gave up reading before my interior self became evident as I read and I failed to give the Reading the justice that it truly does deserve.

 

This has been quite a long journey of years for me.  I first 'came out the closet' re private vows in the lay celibate state because I was given a computer and discovered Catholic discussion sites at the time when private vows as a vocation and call was being hotly contested.  This was quite some years ago.  I wanted to join in that discussion and as one who not only had "been there" but was still actively there.  That was bad enough insofar as my nerves were concerned.  Nowadays on CDSites, I am quite confident.  It was on CDSites that I first learnt about private vows being received by a priest at a Mass and I quietly made enquires.  But it all seemed too grand and overpowering for me until I met Fr John and as my SD and so I raised the subject with him.  He took it to our Vicar General who took it to our Archbishop.  But the first I learnt of that process was after it went into the hands of the Archbishop.

His approval took me completely out of my comfort zone, which was prepared in every way for a negative response.  And so now the actual day is drawing closer and I am starting to feel that I am three steps closer to that jolly rostrum (my vows being more 'public' [meaning "known about"]than ever before) which scares the living daylights out of me.  But that is my feeling level and I still have the objective and goal in sight as prime: Home Mass to renew and receive life vows to the evangelical counsels and to a specific way of life, as per the Rule of LIfe for Bethany, requested and then approved by Fr John some time ago now.

 

Usually I do take things day by day.  Live just for today - but in this preparation process I am continually needing to remind myself to just stay in today. 

 

Here is a quote from Ayn Rand I read today on the internet "

Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark, in the hopeless swamps of the approximate, the not-quite, the not-yet, the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish, in lonely frustration for the life you deserved, but have never been able to reach. Check your road and the nature of your battle.
The world you desired can be won. It exists, it is real, it is possible, it is yours"

 

 

Whatever might lay ahead in my journey, I know that the 15th August 2014 will be a milestone and a marker.  It might even be a turning point................ meanwhile, "back to the ranch" and today only.

 

Thank you very much again, TT, BM and AL and any and all others.  Amen.

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

2 more days (22nd July Feast Mary Magdalene) and I am on retreat until 22nd August Feast of Queenship of Mary..............and off computer for that period.

 

Sunday 20th July 2014 here now (6.15am)

 

Countdown 25 days 17hrs to Solemnity of The Assumption and Home Mass

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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oremus1    32
oremus1

Hi Barbara

 

I have read your journey (not quie all of it, but many posts) over several months and your vocational path is a fascinating one.

 

Can I ask some question? Not to be rude, just curious. Probably many of will never meet anyone with this rare vocation. Probably you have had to do a lot of work and reserch on your own.

1) you mentioned you are vowing the three evanglical  counsels. How would you live them in the lay state? Chastity is obviously fine. But poverty? or Obedience - to whom? and to what extent? are you vowing anything else (e.g. Benedictines vow stability, Oasis de Jesus Sacerdote vow 'vocationist' etc)?

2) Did you write your vows? was it hard? what sources did you use (if any)?

3) will you have a rule of life? what did you base it on (if anything)? how long is it? how long did it take to write?

4) what impact will having your vows recieved have on the rest of your life?

5) did you ever think to join a secular insitute or become a CV or hermit?

Finally I share with you a blog I came across when reserching the CV vocation which I think you will like. Mac McLernon is a Irish/British lady who blogs under Mulier Fortis. this lady is also privately vowed for 9 years. She was a revert and not eligible for the CV vocation if you know what i mean. and i think she was beyond the age of most convents. she made private vows in a special celebration like a wedding at mass. then every year her parish has a special mass for her, with a big  celebration afterward, and she publically renews her vows at mass . i think she even chooses the readings for the vow renewal mass and everything.  


I thought you might like these posts:

Background to her vows  http://mulier-fortis.blogspot.co.uk/2006/10/renewal-of-vows.html
http://mulier-fortis.blogspot.co.uk/2006/11/countdown-to-big-day.html
http://mulier-fortis.blogspot.co.uk/2011/11/renewing-my-vows.html
http://mulier-fortis.blogspot.co.uk/2007/12/five-whole-years-and-counting.html
http://mulier-fortis.blogspot.co.uk/2006/12/on-vow-of-chastity.html
Here she talks about vows being recieved: http://wdtprs.com/blog/2013/03/go-to-the-blog-of-mulier-fortis/

it would be very cool if maybe you could somehow collect up all of your posts about your journey and preparation, and put them on a blog so everyone can read them. it might help people who have the same calling in life.

may you be very blessed! :-)
 

Edited by oremus1

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

Thank you for asking the questions you have asked, Oremus

 

1) When I first met my SD (priest and religious) and he accepted to spiritually direct me, the first thing he asked me to do was to write a Rule of Life, for the way I call "Bethany".  At first I experienced much reluctance but then to do what he had asked when I sat down at the keyboard to write it, it just flowed onto the pages and is actually the way I have tried to live for over 35 years using the phrases of The Our Father as subject headings.  I gave Father a copy of the rule and he later gave it his approval as a Rule for my way of life.  He commented "It strikes me as very comprehensive".

 

Talking with him about a Home Mass for private vows came a few more appointments down the line.  I had never gave the remotest thought about having my private vows received since Bipolar back then was quite active and more than troublesome.  But at the same time I was making research, as much as I could and not much at all available, about the procedure and why's and wherefore's (nothing at all available) re having vows received. When I shifted into my current suburb, I held back on having the unit blessed as I had always held back on having my commitment ring and sterling silver cross on neckchain blessed.  All that will be done at the Home Mass on 15th August.   By the time Father and I were discussing a Home Mass, Bipolar had been inactive for many years and no problem whatsoever.  Hence I felt that the time had come.

 

My private vow of Obedience is to The Church and all secular authority validly placed over me in matters not sinful, to which we are all called anyway.  My private vow of obedience includes my Rule of Life.  The Rule very much presents matters to aspire wholeheartedly towards - they are ideals presented for the Bethany Way of Life.  There is a stipulation that common sense is to be used (St Albert Ancient Rule of Carmel - "common sense is the foundation of all virtue") and that common sense applied transcends all rules in my Rule.

To what extent am I bound under a private vow of obedience.  I am bound under the virtue of religion as owing to God what I am vowing - and this is Canon Law.

I am not adding any other vow other than poverty, chastity and obedience.  How these are to be lived out in the day to day is spelt out in the Rule.  Throughout the Rule there is a quite heavy emphasis on Love of Neighbour as a concrete type of expression of one's Love for God.  There can be no real Love of God without Love of neighbour "how can you say you love God whom you cannot see if you do not love your neighbour whom you can see" (apologies, no time to find where it is quoted in the New Testament and are the words of Jesus).  Bethany asks that one finds one's identity as shoulder to shoulder with the most corrupt to the most virtuous walking the earth and simply because Jesus died for every single person and every single person without exception is beloved by God and His child.  Bethany asks that one finds one's identity as sinner and why should one's sin and failings be less serious than any other and reasons are spelt out in the Rule. It asks that rather than consider another's failings, one looks for the good and this can be found in every single person it is my long experience and in a suburb for 30years in which I came to know people involved in absolutely every social problem I can think of.  It was a very poor suburb.

 

Poverty is also spelt right out as to how it is to be lived out in daily life including giving of material, spiritual, emotional goods, along with time and efforts to any person whatsoever, without exceptions.  Of interest, I have been living the Bethany way of life for over 35 years and started out with contents of a bed, wardrobe and washing machine only.  I live in a government housing unit and back when Bethany began in Elizabeth, South Australia (it was first established in a previous suburb to that), all floor coverings and curtains along with most everything I have including whitegoods, computer, TV and most all items of furniture have been donated. Mainly, this has come about by friends of Bethany updating their own household items and offering the original goods to Bethany if needed.

Prime in the Rule is to seek true poverty of spirit and this comes about through self knowledge and by the whole Rule's emphasis on seeking a shoulder to shoulder identification with all, as above.

 

2) Yes, I am writing my own vows as Father has requested and not as yet in final form.  I am looking at, where I can find them, vows made by various institutes and not very often mentioned at all.  Although my feeling is at this point that the wording will probably be mine alone.  I will be writing the vows during my retreat.  I will also be making a general confession - and preparation and effecting will take place during the retreat - hopefully on the Feast of The Transfiguration, but Father is still to confirm the date.

 

3) As stated, the Rule of Life for Bethany simply put in writing the way I had aspired to live for 35 years.  I did write one once before under another SD and confessor many years ago indeed. He died of cancer. -  and he had approved it, but there is  long story attached to that and why it was lost.  It is not long, it covers 14 quarto well spaced pages.  Surprisingly as previously stated, it just flowed onto the page.  Because I will be making it available for guests to peruse at the Home Mass, I am currently revising and polishing it as there was, I felt and feel, considerable repetition.  Nothing is deleted, much is being stated more clearly and in a more concise form.  On a quick reflection, the final Rule will probably be 10 - 12 pages and each individual rule is numbered from beginning to end .......... with an index.

 

4) Impact of the vows!!!  There will be a lifelong impact, Grace prevailing.  Under the virtue of religion I owe to God what I am vowing and that spells out as responsibility and accountability. It is a stipulation in the Rule that it is to be read in full on a Saturday or over a week if time will not permit on a Saturday.  Again, as above, common sense must be applied to this Rule since at pockets in the life of Bethany a week can become very demanding indeed.

 

5) Yes over the 35 past years, I entered a monastic religious order and rather quickly realised that I did not have a religious vocation.  It was once stated to me that I had a religious vocation but what kind was a complete mystery.  I made enquiries of several third orders and secular institutes, but discerned against these for various reasons.

 

Thank you for the links you have given.

 

I do have a blog I established quite some time ago for my own viewing only and not available to anyone else.  I abandoned it because it struck me as being too time consuming.  I am considering, and considering when I can only, writing a book perhaps a couple of books.  But as things stand just now that is well and truly on the back burner, well and truly.

 

I have replied to you very quickly (fast touch typist) with only one quick read through.  Any more questions at all, please feel quite free to ask.  It is 11.37am here on 21.7.14 and from tomorrow, Feast of Mary Magdelene until 22nd August Queenship of Mary, I am on retreat.  I am taking a week after the Home Mass to give thanks and with much indeed very humble gratitude,

 

Barb :)

 

 

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

I have always longed for at least one companion to share the Bethany way of life and have a spare room here well furnished.  Although I live in government housing, the unit here is very spacious indeed, larger than my three bedroomed house in Elizabeth.  There is a fully established garden although none when I shifted here.  My two sons (adults and independent with their own careers) jumped right in and at no cost to Bethany worked like donkeys until I had a fully established garden with pergola and entertainment area, bbq, outside double door family and dining area.

  I thought a blog just might 'hook' one person at least; however I have concluded that if The Lord wants Bethany as way of life shared by two or more, He will do the footwork as I really do not have the time, nor the confidence really in my own ability re formation, responsibility for that is.  If I did have the time, I would relieve The Lord of the problem and write a blog :)

Community is a very important word and dynamic to me and under the Bethany Rule of Life, every person one comes across is to be regarded as a member of one's community - and that is spelt out further in the Rule.

Why do I distinguish between myself and Bethany?  Because Bethany per se as way of life and Rule of Life is an aspiration and a very high ideal that I can struggle at times to attain.

 

And blessings to you also, Oremus, and to all.  Amen.

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

Bethany undoubtedly has similar features to all vocations in The Church - and since I do not have a companion for this way of life, I live as a type of hermit - yet in community (Carmelite way of life).  I am not stating, mind you, that it is the Carmelite way of life - it has similar features only, similar being operative.  I was accepted at 16yrs to enter Carmel at 21yrs of age.  'Things' got in the way but I am still very close to Carmel here and I am now 68 almost 69, hence my relationship with Carmel, a very close relationship indeed, has spanned 53yrs and St Therese of Lisieux is my beloved and greatly indeed admired Confirmation Patron Saint.

There is even a remote type of similarity to married life, in that family in its most immediate to its most broadest definition, is a feature of Bethany.

 

There is not much at all available re private vows to the evangelical counsels and much of what is available seems to be written by those with an investment in stating what private vows are not rather than what they intrinsically are.  I am quite familiar with Canon Law, but after the Home Mass sometime further on, I will be phoning diocesan offices to ask for a contact point with a theologian and put all my questions to him or her.

Edited by BarbaraTherese

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

It might be opportune to post the following:

 

“The Apostolate in Every Vocation to Follow Christ”

 

Rev. John A. Hardon, S.J. http://www.therealpresence.org/archives/Religious_Life/Religious_Life_033.htm

 

“But as the Church developed, there appeared three types of Christian perfection which have not only survived to the present day but will continue until the end of time. In general, they are, first, the strictly monastic. It may be heremetical, but that is rare; there are very few hermits in the Roman Catholic Church. The monastic form has many variants. The cloistered communities would qualify under that general rubric. Second, apostolic communities, where they engage in some kind of apostolic work which carries their efforts, even if not the persons, outside of their own community life. And third, secular institutes.There is a fourth category contemplated by the Holy See in anticipation of the new Code of Canon Law, so that something may be done for the thousands of women who seem not to want religious life yet seem to want to live especially dedicated lives in the Church. The secular institutes are a recent development of the Catholic Church. If there would be a fourth category, it would be some form of what we now call “secular institutes,” but the implications still have to be worked out.”

 

 

 

 

 

Fr J A Hardon SJ was a Jesuit priest and noted theologian.  He is said to be one of the most important theologians of the 20th century.  Probably his most notable work was the new Catholic Catechism (post Vatican II), a burden he took on at the request of Pope Paul VI.  Fr Hardon was a prolific writer and he died in 2000. His cause for beatification is before Rome.

 

 

 

Holy See – See is taken from the Latin “sede”, meaning seat.  It is called the Holy See since its bishop has Christ’s authority over holy things.  These terms apply not only to the Pope, but also to those who assist him in governing the universal Church (Code of Canon Law c. 361)

 

_________________________________

 

 

My note: Undoubtedly the above was written prior to our current Canon Law - at the time Fr Hardon wrote the above our Current Canon Law was still under consideration by The Holy See.  It may well be that the above has been decided against as for the thousands of women who seem to want to live dedicated lives in The Church but not religious life - or it might be that it is still under consideration and would form a fourth group in consecrated life.  All this is for the future somewhere to unfold or to lapse into non consideration/defunct by The Holy See.

 

Personally, I have heard nothing more whatsoever on the subject, which does not mean that further comment does not exist.

 

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

The opening page of The Rule for Bethany states The Mass and The Blessed Eucharist as prime and the reasons why - and that The Blessed Eucharist is the source and summit - and the pivot - of Bethany as way of life.

There is a horarium or timetable for daily prayer including Morning, Evening and Night Prayer - and the Readings from The Office of Readings on Sundays as well as Lectio Divina.  There is a time set for private mental prayer during each day.

Ascetic practises are included in the Rule along with the terms of acts of penance and self denial spelt out and for daily life.  These acts of penance and self denial have an emphasis on the involuntary, although voluntary also is included...........nothing exceptional, just small/ordinary type hidden acts with an emphasis that such acts are not the goal or end product of themselves, rather something higher should be the goal or reason for such acts.

 

Doorbell! Just as well!

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

Back again! :)

I have a booklet type document*** "What are Private Vows?" which includes quotations from various reliable Catholic sources, including pre and post Vatican2 Documents which do mention private vows. I have one article from a reliable Catholic source (non clerical) explaining private vows.

 

I have typed out the responses for The Mass on quarto sheets stapled on top left corner with the actual responses in large type face, along with a brief explanation of each part of The Mass included. I was going to use laminated sheet with responses from the parish, but decided these were great for those familiar with The Mass - but perhaps not suitable for non Catholics attending.   It is hard to know at this point just how many will be attending since the RSVP date on the invitations is 31.7.14. If anyone has not replied by 1.8.14, I will be ringing them.  But at least five and possibly 8 attending are practising Catholics. I invited 24 guests in all.  To date, 9 have confirmed attendance.

 

 Both the above documents will be included in a plastic quarto envelope, cheap and readily attainable from newsagents or office suppliers here(available in various colours if desired - I haven't decided as yet).  The plastic envelopes will be placed on the chairs arranged around a coffee table, which Father John prefers for a Home Mass.

I have a lovely hand crotched small tablecloth for the coffee table. On the top corners of the coffee table will be small candles in red glass containers, beside these a quite small vase of fresh flowers.

 

The Bethany Rule of Life will be in a plastic sleeved folder and left on the coffee table after Father has finished our Mass - for general perusal if desired.

 

Supper will be coffee and tea*** (savoury and sweet finger food) will be prepared and put out on kitchen servery after Mass, with a few willing hands helping.  We will have small party size pies, pasties and sausage rolls, also spring rolls.  Cooked prawns with tails on - on lettuce salad. Cold (home cooked) chicken on bed of lettuce salad.

Sandwiches: curried eggs, tuna with onion and mayonnaise and cucumber sandwiches.  Since the Mass is on a Friday, we have supplied for those who may still choose not to eat meat on a Friday.

Sweet finger food: small apple and also apricot slice.  Butterfly cupcakes filled with jam and cream. Scones with butter, jam and cream provided.  One large cake I will be buying and they have a great selection in our Coles fridge cabinet.

 

All the above might be adjusted depending on number attending - that decision is for a future point.

 

Any leftovers my helpers will be taking home as plates.  I will be buying something small for those who are so willingly and happily helping me.  Thank you cards for guests will be made and posted out a week or so after Home Mass.  The invitation states casual daywear and no gifts please. Directions to Bethany were on the back of the invitations, courtesy of Google Maps.

 

Unit and garden will have a thorough clean on Thursday 14.8.14 with again, willing helpers.

 

Have I forgotten anything? Please feel free to advise and most welcome indeed!

 

_________

*** It was a nightmare for me trying to get my printer to print out in booklet form.  I managed eventually with the help of good ol' Google as much of a problem Google found me to understand what on earth it was telling me to do!!!

*** Supper: I am also providing Coca Cola and Lemonade, a couple of bottles of red and white wine as a 'just in case'.

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

A few members on Phatmass have suggested a blog.  I have just decided that over the retreat period, I really should give time and prayer re a blog.  My problem has been re the existing blog that I just got too carried away and if I started at say 2pm it was pretty close to 5pm before I glanced, horrified, at the clock once more.  If I do make a blog, I am going to need an alarm on and stick to the bell religiously...........something I did not find difficult at all in monastic life...............and to the amusement often of my community rather regularly.  For example, we were not to run, the sight of me walking at the fastest pace possible trying to create an image of not in a hurry at all, at all, whatsoever must have been a sight :)

I recall fondly one morning struggling out of bed in the wee small hours, doing what I had to do in my cell, and then make it to the Chapter Room where we assembled for each of the Hours, by the next bell.  As I walked/ran with my personal image paramount of 'not running' in mind, I passed a Sister watering a potplant in the cloister, as I passed she said "Good morning!" and I almost lost my balance since we were still in the Grand Silence - and truly, I nearly fell over my own feet.

 

Another time, I rose through the night to go to the ladies and not long after I entered. At the same time, a novice came out her cell probably for the same reason.  But at the sight of her, I had to turn round quickly and go back to my cell and laugh, she had on a cap that looked like a swimming cap and she looked so very different to what she looked like in the habit and white veil.

 

So many quite funny things happened to me in monastic life and I an sure it wasn't long that my presence in the cloister was a source of quiet smiles.  After a while, however, I did realize that I was also a source of disturbance and that was the icing on the cake of my decision to leave.  I was indeed the roundest of pegs in the squarest of holes.  It took a while, but after that I realized I had entered for all the wrong reasons and monastic contemplative living as it existed in my community was not my vocation at all.  I returned to Bethany and in my previous suburb I used to call Bethany "Kennedy Airport" it could get so busy and distracting............but it was after I left monastic life and returned to Bethany that slowly I knew what my vocation was indeed, not that I had not done so before monastic life even - but real assurance came after I left, so much so that I have never looked back.  While I still do love and hold in great esteem all forms of consecrated life.  But I am very simply not called to same and I can have at times a sort of holy envy of those that are and be thankful for them and that unique and important vocation and call........which is one only reason why I haunt the Vocations Station.

 

Oh dear 2.36pm here and I have much to complete before I hit the sack...........and my own fault entirely!  My reason, and no excuse whatsoever, is that I wanted to get as much into this thread re the Home Mass to this point..........I think that God is rolling His 'eyes' knowingly...."she is at it............AGAIN!".......reasons, excuses, not me, reasons excuses, not me...........

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

Must add one last point.  (I have decided to do the shopping necessary i.e. groceries after voluntary reception desk/data entry work tomorrow in the Magdalene Centre - for Anglicare.  This gives me more time today as late as it is in the day.  I like to say with a smile, I profess and worship in The Catholic Church, while I serve in Anglicare.  My other voluntary work is at St Luke's Mission, next door to the Magdalene Centre, on a Thursday now - doing the same as I do for the Magdalene Centre.  St Luke's is also an Anglicare venture for the poor and needy.  I worked voluntary for two years with St Vincent de Paul in their Head Office doing much the same as with Anglicare, except with St Vinnies I dealt with beautiful  people only over the phone.  For Anglicare, it is face to face with all kinds of beautiful people.  I love the work and am very impressed indeed with Anglicare's emphasis on poverty and as "seen to be"............transcended only by their tremendous and willing generosity to people in all kinds of need.  Our offices in Anglicare are all quite poor in every way, every way.  Even the offices themselves are in very old houses.)

 

To that last point.  Re standard clothing.  I am much too busy with other matters to give it thought while I have a big black garbage bag and am going through my wardrobe taking out what I simply do not need and will donate it somewhere.  Probably over the retreat or after I will give some sort of standard wear more thought and prayer.  In no way whatsoever will it resemble a religious habit.  For one, black slacks in both winter and summer are standard and have been for years.  I never wear skirts of any kind.  The reason I never wear skirts is that slacks means that I can do all sorts of tasks at all times without being concerned about modesty - and the long tops I wear in all seasons go down past my hips.  These items of clothing already exist in my wardrobe and all the tops bar two (for best wear) have been bought in second hand clothing stores.  In my wardrobe already which I will retain bar what I will be donating to charity, I have clothing I can wear and have worn to any sort of venue whatsoever including formal.

I have two only pairs of black slacks.  One for around Bethany, the other for best.  And these I have had for years without needing to replace them.  Choice of fabric is always important.  If I wash them, they dry overnight in all weather.

 

What is positive about standard wear if it is carefully designed etc. is that it cuts down a tremendous lot on cost of clothing.  It also means that that probably common and urgent pressing decision of we females rather regularly it seems to me, is eliminated i.e. "What shall I wear?"  But all that is a future decision somewhere.  Also it is taking all my available funds and putting the budget in the red, with absolute trust and confidence in The Lord without extremes, since I am paying for any and all expenses involved in the Home Mass.

 

I am very conscious indeed that my vocation and call is indeed to the lay state of life - and I rejoice in that call and vocation always.........nowadays anyway. :)  It is very important indeed, again, as that as things unfold in my journey I am defining matters within the lay state of life and at times with much prayer, thought and actual defining as fitting in to my vocation and call to the laity and in every way.

 

Oh and another point in the Bethany Rule is to retain a sense of humour always and especially about oneself.  To sight and delight in the funny and absurd in life without cruel so called 'humour' towards oneself or any person.  I do find much to delight in and with much humour in watching David Attenborough on TV and his exploits into the tremendous forms of life on our planet and the habits of such life forms.  Oh for sure, The Lord has a wondrous sense of humour..........for one, just watch David Attenborough and his various TV programs if you have the opportunity.  I daresay that just as he provides much for humans to laugh about, if he made TV programs of humans for the great variety of life on our planet to watch, they would find a dreadful awful lot to laugh about re we humans!

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

David Attenboroughs beautiful video to the lyrics of “It’s a Beautiful World” (2 mins approx)

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=auSo1MyWf8g

 

 

 

Nature is not only funny at times, it can be cruel and sad, dangerous and threatening â€“ reflecting our own life experiences at times..........yet beautiful.   I saw this documentary recently on TV about the Living Baking Desert – and is much longer than the above (1hr approx.). https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=erkTZxdGuO4

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BarbaraTherese    1,913
BarbaraTherese

Have come across something on the web that seems to come from Rome about when private vows for example (a private devotion in Church terms) can be renewed.  It does not state that it cannot happen during Mass only "not to be encouraged".  So here and now I am not encouraging it !!! - since Father John has stated that my vows will be renewed at the Offertory.  I shared my concern about the Offertory with him and that perhaps it should be before or after Mass, which he waved aside.

No time just now to post what I found on the net which seems to come from Rome and before I post it with the link, I want to ensure that it has indeed come from Rome.  If it did come from Rome, then "not to be encouraged" is not stating that it must never occur during Mass ever.

I sure am not anything of an expert on liturgy and such matters formal and official in The Church not even the dirt under their feet, let alone any sort of bootlace.  I am being guided by Fr John, who to date anyway has lent more towards conservative in my estimation anyway.  Nothing of the lilberal to date about him whatsoever............but he does have a sense of humour, thank you, Lord! Amen. 

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oremus1    32
oremus1

Thank you for all of your detailed answers Barbara!!

 

This is incredible and very beautiful!

I second the many people suggesting a blog, that way all of these wonderful things can be read by others outside Phat. Im not sure I have read anything as detailed on the private vows vocation!!


Perhaps it might be part of the Lord will that you evanglise about this vocation - look at how much you have already done and written about it?!

Is there any way you can post the leaflets you made online? Or the Bethany Rule? Or email them to people privately? I would love to read these, and I am sure I am not alone.

 

You have clearly thought a lot about this and put so much effort into planning and preparing, bless you!!

When is it, the Assumption? Phat should make a novena or something!!

Im sure I would cry if i saw someone do this. it is so beautiful. will you have enough space of all the guests? why is it at home instead of in the parish?

HOW EXCITING!!!
  

Edited by oremus1

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