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    BarbaraTherese

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    little2add

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    Lilllabettt

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    Luigi

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Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation since 05/31/2019 in all areas

  1. 6 points
    ardillacid

    Ardill Update

    Howdy Friends, I was AWOL from Phatmass for awhile, so here's what I've been up to 2017: I got married! Who would have guessed it For a late honeymoon we took a trip to Europe. The cathedrals were unbelievable. We bought a house in the south hills, so I guess we are committed to this city Someday I would like to move somewhere the sun shines. This March we had our first little pierogi! He was a few weeks early, but it ended up working out with the lockdowns starting shortly after we brought him home Lucky for him he looks just like his mother
  2. 5 points
    Anastasia

    What if it's not possible to live a vocation?

    The active discussion of this topic seems to stop months ago but I have just read all and have some thoughts. I have a suspicion that the desire to be confirmed or recognized in one’s vocation, may have something to do with anxiety and insecurity – apart from other reasons. (I hope no one will take an offence in my words, I speak about myself as well). It is something to do with the desire to be affirmed, accepted and belonged. There is nothing wrong with it of course, it is a human nature. Yet it seems to me that centuries ago things were simpler and more about being than being recognized. Over last hundred years there have appeared more and more detailed descriptions of various charisms of the orders/organizations etc. I remember how years ago I was anxiously reading about “Carmelite charism” – ten, twenty, hundred descriptions from the websites feeling that I must fit into all that. Looking back, I can see it was probably unnecessary, especially since Carmel was approved for me as a way (in a form possible for an Orthodox) by a very wise Jesuit priest. Somehow, I was so anxious that I completely forgot the fact that St John of the Cross was going to join… I forgot which order, also contemplative when St Teresa of Avila convinced him to help her in her reform as a Carmelite friar. I think here is a very important lesson: St John wanted God and he could obtain Him in both places, with both “charisms”. Likewise, St Catherine of Siena did not think about “the Dominican charism” as far as I know but joined its Third Order out practical consideration and a strong feeling that God wanted her to remain in the world. Being a young woman who vowed to remain a virgin she need some formal protection. Now she is a Dominican Saint. I feel there is something very important in those examples: first a person feels what God wants from her, something quite concrete, then she finds a place, a form, a cover to answer God so to speak and not trying anxiously fit into descriptions and boxes… I think when there is such a sense God provides and leads. As for “not being able to live a vocation”. I still believe it is about being. St Gemma Galgani was refused by all monasteries in her area but one; in that one she was not interested because, to her mind, they were “too relaxed” and she wanted austerity. What one would say about that situation? Who was right? She was living as God wanted her to live, I mean her inner life. I understand that this is Catholic forum but I still would like to provide a different approach. In the Orthodox Church there are no different monastic Orders with different charisms. All are contemplatives, technically speaking. If a person wants to become a nun, she joins a monastery as “a worker” meaning she works various tasks, prays, etc, lives there. It can go on for weeks, months, years. Eventually she may become a novice and later – a clothed nun. That is all. Yet, some women who b.o. their health simply chose (in a recent past) to live a strict secluded life at home. We not have a concept of “vows”, a person simply lives chaste. In the past during the Soviet regime we would have so-called “secret nuns” – nuns who were such but lived in the world and no one knew, for an obvious reason. Some lived together in some houses but many were on their own. Did they have a monastic vocation? Yes, but without normal monastic settings. In the Tradition of the Church before the Schism there are stories of famous Saints, monastics, hermits who were told that in the nearest city there are lay people whose lives are higher than their. We also have a saying that "the habit does not make a nun; in the end many nuns will be seen as not while others who were not will be seen as such". What I am saying is that it seems to me everything is much simpler. My firm conclusion is that it is possible to live own vocation no matter what because vocation is simply how a person is called to relate to God. It is something that always brings fruit. Finally, a life in Christian community is very valuable and not just for those wish to enter a monastery. I would like to have such a circle but alas. (It is long but really felt like sharing my thoughts. I think two Churches have much to learn from each other.)
  3. 5 points
    Swami Mommy

    Parents have other plans for me....

    For what they’re worth, here are my comments and suggestions: 1. Finish your degree. Life holds many surprises along the way and you may need to fall back on your degree for a way to earn an income if a religious vocation doesn’t work out somewhere down the line. Your parents are right on this point. 2. Find a job for a year or two after graduation to build up your career credentials, (you have to pay off those school debts before you can enter, anyways!), especially if you are planning on entering an apostolic community that must work outside the convent walls to support itself. You will be more easily marketable to the community with a solid resume. If you are hoping to enter a cloistered community, still take the time to spend a couple of years in the world exploring what it feels like to be a self-sufficient adult. Make sure that your desire to enter a convent right out of school does not have an underlying component of fear of facing the big, impersonal world that you will have to sink or swim in with no emotional or financial support. The world of work will teach you SOOO many things about yourself that you can take with you into the convent to ease your transition into community living. It’s not easy living with strangers, even nice ones you will come to love as sisters, so a little more maturation beforehand and feeling fully anchored in your own personal sense of self will never go to waste. 3. Try a little dating for awhile (if anyone asks!), just on a casual level, to examine your reactions to one-on-one relationships. It’s important to explore and understand your gut reaction of not being interested in marriage. Make sure that you’re not harboring any subconscious concerns about possibly not being romantically attractive to others (if you cut them off before they reject you first, then you don’t have to wonder if it’s YOU, not them). Figure out what particular aspects that you aren’t ‘drawn to’ about married life are unique to marriage alone, because many core aspects of daily communal living will have the same components as married life. If you do not feel drawn to sexual intimacy, what comes to mind when you think about having sex? Are your ambivalent feelings borne of core, inculturated beliefs, are they physical feelings of aversion, are they fears of vulnerability and/or inexperience, or are they romantic notions of noble self-sacrifice? Explore those psychological aspects with someone trained to listen for unspoken nuances. If you have no desire to bear children and raise wonderful human beings, that’s something interesting to explore too, considering that Mary surrendered her will to God when she got pregnant, and ended up giving birth to the Son of God! Explore your psyche as though YOU are the lab specimen, so that you truly understand the choices you make and WHY you are making them. While heartfelt spiritual impulses are fine, take the time and make the effort to intellectually understand them as well so you aren’t blindsided ten years down the road when you reach an unexpected crossroads and feel drawn to reassess your life and where you are going. Lay a strong psychological foundation for whichever life path you select. 4. Understand that if you are truly ready to choose a religious vocation, as a MATURE adult you will feel deeply rooted in your choice and no amount of persuasion or dissatisfaction from your parents will shake you from your convictions. It is not your job to care for your parents in their old age (though I can appreciate their concerns)—it is THEIR responsibility to plan for their own futures without expecting you to sacrifice your life on their behalf. They should be saving up to be able to afford a nursing home level of care, if such a future need arises. You were not born on this earth simply to provide them with easy access to a nursemaid! And as for giving your parents grandchildren, your mom and dad are presuming that 1) you will find someone who wants to marry you, 2) you will be fertile, 3) you will be able to carry a baby to term and 4) the baby will live. Those are all four big ‘if’s’ that may or may not happen. Even if you submit to your parents’ wishes, you may end up remaining single for the rest of your life, despite your best efforts to fall in love with someone who YOU want to marry and who wants to marry you, so grandchildren may still not be in their future! Life is a crapshoot. There are no guarantees. 5. Finally, remember that time is on your side. You do not need to ‘launch’ yourself into your chosen life path immediately, however strong your desires may feel. Follow your inclinations, watch for subtle clues in opportunities that arise or in unexpected coicindences, be willing to try and fail, and remember that there are no wrong choices in life—just different lessons attached to them that will teach you about who you ARE and who you are NOT, beyond the level of external circumstances. Metaphorically speaking, you are the SKY and the circumstances of your life, however they play out, are simply the passing clouds against the backdrop of that eternal part of you that was never born, will never die, and which remains unchanged and perfect, regardless of what happens.
  4. 4 points
    Bonkira

    2020 Entrances, Vows, Ordinations

    A new novice for the Poor Clares in Boston: https://poorclarenunsboston.org/2020/06/23/meet-sister-margaret-mary-of-the-sacred-heart/
  5. 4 points
    Gia Marie

    Parents have other plans for me....

    Wow, that is very inspiring to hear her story! I can’t imagine what that felt like though, she is truly a strong and holy woman. You are correct indeed; God alone makes us happy. We just need to trust Him as He only wants what is best for us. I wish I could trust Him more! Thank you for the advice. Prayers! :)) This was very solid advice. I really liked your idea about establishing my own “Rule.” I have begun thinking of that and am planning to start tomorrow. Thank you for that!! It is interesting to hear your perspective as an Eastern Orthodox. I feel I think the same way; the monastic life to me just seems like the highest form of devotion and holiness. I have to remind myself that all vocations are holy! But it can be hard to see that. You are correct in getting some experience before joining the convent. I think I have a lot of growth to go before joining, so I shouldn’t rush it. Thank you for your input. It is greatly appreciated. God bless you!
  6. 4 points
    nikita92

    Parents have other plans for me....

    Greetings Gia Marie! First of all...I am pretty sure that my input will not be as well versed as most other others on here. Lol My perspective is this- as a parent, I do not EXPECT my daughter to support me as I continue to age; nor do I want to burden my daughter with my life and all it does and will entail! I am single and do not have any other family members other than her. She is married with two small children (that I adore) So, I will have to do everything on my own to the best of my abilities...until I am on my dead bed. In my opinion, our children are meant to "Fly the coop"...leave the nest! Not remain ball and chained to their parents! Their expectations are theirs alone! You are 20 and entitled to have your own life! God has obviously blessed you with a vocation to the religious life with a gift/talent for music! (I may be rare in feeling this, but I could only wish that my own daughter was blessed with a vocation such as you have) I concur with what Swami Mommy advised! Finish your degree! Who says that your music has to stop, if you enter into a convent or monastery??! Historically, music and the religious life, go hand in hand! From singing nuns/sisters/priests, to female religious communities who help support their congregation by selling their music either electronically, or CD's. It will not be wasted inside the walls!!! Ask your spiritual director, about how to handle the "guilt trip" your parents are pressuring you with! It may be innocent on their part..but none the less, that is still what it is. A guilt trip! So...you are a only child! That does not constitute the owness on you, to provide them with grandchildren! You are NOT responsible for their perceived happiness! Follow your own path! It is between only you and God, where/what you are feeling pulled towards! God Bless you!
  7. 4 points
    Anastasia

    Parents have other plans for me....

    I will give a point of view which comes from being an Eastern Orthodox i.e. someone who (as all Orthodox) hold the monastic life in the highest esteem. If I was to answer your question twenty or ten years ago, I would say “leave everything and enter if you feel a calling”. Yet now, after I have had some experience in the West in the relevant areas and also observed what is going on in monasteries just almost everywhere in the world (including my own motherland) I would say that there too many dangers for things to go wrong if one enters too soon, without some wisdom provided by a life experience and also without having any security of an alternative (like college degree, career etc). There are too many women who entered various communities and then were told to leave after years, sometime many years. This is a huge life drama on its own but if a woman has nothing else apart from the experience of religious life it can crush a person. One also should have a very clear of what a life of a nun is supposed to be so she would be able to discern the places, seeing what is behind the facade. I definitely advice you to finish your degree and to pursue music if you love it. Yes, God fulfills as nothing else does yet we are supposed to answer that fulfillment using talents given by Him. You can use music to glorify God no matter what happens later. Meanwhile you can try (if you have not done it yet) to have a rule (prayers etc) which is big enough to give you some taste of what the Office in the monastery would be. If you proceed with music and will not meet someone you may love you may in the future decide about the monastery or to discern that your vocation is being consecrated woman in the world. As such, you will always be able to serve God via your music in a very direct way – in the churches and so on. All the above said without giving consideration to your parents’ selfish statement about grandchildren. Such statements are painful and unreasonable. No one can use this argument. No one can demand someone to have children because they “wanted grandchildren”. Yet, if they are simply afraid to be separated from you forever then I can understand this feeling, especially since you are the only child. It is pity they add other things which are much less reasonable and guilt-inducing.
  8. 3 points
    Luigi

    2020 Entrances, Vows, Ordinations

    "Meghan Perks enters our community as a Postulant on the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, January 1, 2020 ." From the Carmelite monastery in Covington, LA. They now have three women in formation, and recently made her solemn profession. https://www.covingtoncarmel.org/about1
  9. 3 points
    Seven77

    Serious almost imperceptible infection…

    In society. There is a serious deception happening. People are being infected by it. It seems to me that some people really think that you have to be a so-called liberal, theologically speaking, to be against racism. And there are those who think that the orthodox are all universally somehow for it. That's a lie from the pit Of hell. There is no dichotomy between truth and love. We need to be on guard. Watch and pray. What do you all think?
  10. 3 points
    Sponsa-Christi

    New Vocation Video from the Parish Visitors

    The Parish Visitors of Mary Immaculate have a new vocation video out:
  11. 3 points
    Luigi

    2020 Entrances, Vows, Ordinations

    Solemn Profession at Crozet Trappistine Abbey in Virginia. https://www.ocso.org/2020/06/20/crozet-4/
  12. 3 points
    Gia Marie

    Parents have other plans for me....

    Thank you so much for your advice. I loved what you said; “God provides when we need Him to provide, not before.” I needed to hear that. God bless you!! Wow, this is incredible advice. I think you are totally right in finishing college first and maybe getting some experience out of college before committing to any order. I am praying on your advice. Thank you so much for taking the time to offer these wonderful suggestions! It is greatly appreciated!! Praying for you :)) I loved that last point so much! It can be hard to trust that He can truly use any and all situations for His plan. It truly takes great faith to be able to trust in Him completely like that! I pray someday I get there. I will pray for you and your discernment as well. Thank you for the kind reply and advice. God bless you This was so inspiring to read, especially from a parent! I guess I just feel guilty, as I am their only child and do feel like since they have provided & sacrificed so much for me, I should reciprocate that. That is what I have always believed I need to do for my parents. I would feel horrible not being able to take care of them, after everything they have done for me (my mom especially has made unbelievable sacrifices for me). But, I will continue to pray on it and ask the Lord to work in their hearts as well as mine. I really appreciate what you said about being able to use my music even if I am called to religious life. It’s good to remember that. Your response was so thoughtful and much needed. Especially when you said you wished your own daughter had such a vocation! That made me stop & realize that I should be thinking of this vocation as a blessing and a gift. Thank you so, so much for your response. God bless! That is very true. Please pray for me, and I am praying for you!
  13. 3 points
    Sponsa-Christi

    Vocational Discernment Retreats?

    Are you looking specifically for a retreat that would be based on providing information on vocations in general, including consecrated virginity? Or are you looking more for something like just some quiet time set aside to pray about your vocation and talk to God about what He might be calling you too? If it's the latter, what you might try doing is just making a private retreat, with discernment as your personal focus. If you have a spiritual director or regular confessor, or even just a spiritual mentor-type person, you could ask him or her to suggest some helpful reading on that them, and then make a point to talk about your experiences afterwards. (I'm a consecrated virgin and that's basically what I did during my own discernment.)
  14. 3 points
    InCordeJesuEtMariae

    Parents have other plans for me....

    I’m praying for you and your family. When I was a nun in a Carmelite Monastery, there was a fellow Sister whose family was very opposed as well. The day she entered when she put the postulant clothing on and went to the parlor and her family was on the other side, they cried and left. Her father has still not visited her and doesn’t write her letters. Her mother and siblings do though but they still don’t like her choice. It’s been over five years. She professed her Solemn Vows about a year ago. When I was there she was as happy as can be and was always joyful in everything. Why? Because it was God’s Will and she was doing it. That is true joy. Pray to know His Will, get whatever guidance you need that God is pleased to send you to help discern, and follow where the Holy Spirit sends you. It’s in doing God’s Will that we will be truly happy and become holy.
  15. 3 points
    Lea

    Parents have other plans for me....

    Hey Gia, I'm in a somewhat similar situation, have been discerning since I'm 20 and just turned 23. I'm not an only child, but due to certain circumstances this whole "grandchildren and caretaking" stuff is up on me in my parents opinion. Some advice I collected over time: - sometimes parents grow to be more accepting when they see their child bloom - maybe your parents have got a twisted image of RL (which might be the reason why they think entering in a convent meant wasting your life and talents) - my SD told me that in many cases the relationship between children and parents change in the child's early twenties, so you and your parents might see each other pretty differently in a few years from now. - "God usually doesn't call to interrupt one's studies" is what I once heard from a vocation director. If you go on to get your degree this gives you not only better chances to enter as @JHFamily pointed out, but also if you discern out of religious life. - Last but not least another piece of advice from my former SD: "The Lord gets you where He wants you. And if you take a few detours in advance, that's completely fine. He can and will wait." Please stand firm in your faith and take your time to mature and let Him work in your heart (and probably your parents hearts as well). Good luck!
  16. 2 points
    truthfinder

    Fund the police

    Why does it have to be police? You mention potholes and cats in trees. Those are not jobs for police. Instead, money should be put into a civic (non emergency) line. Many places have them.
  17. 2 points
    rnflower

    Nice video

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iHjG73p3ey4 Nice video of some young ladies entering the convent
  18. 2 points
    Delivery

    Biden Is KKK

    Just wanted to post how racist and idiotic his comments were today. I've been accused here of being a Democrat because of my criticism of Trump's racism. That I'm only criticising him because he's Republican and I don't criticize Democrats racism. Not the case. I'm not Democrat or Republican. I think both parties are a joke. I've called out Trump continuously because of how latched onto by Catholics and Christians he is. This election will be just as depressing as the last one. No idea how these are the two choices we have to choose from.
  19. 2 points
    Nunsuch

    Missionary Sisters of St. Francis of Assis

    The delay in recent months may also have to do with Covid-19. But I think the other issues are of greater (and more persistent) concern.
  20. 2 points
    Anastasia

    What if it's not possible to live a vocation?

    The formalistic answer is “no” but the real situation is quite different. But first I probably should say a little about the “grades” of monastics otherwise can be some confusion. In the Roman Catholic Church “a sister” is a monastic of an apostolic order and “a nun” is a cloistered monastic, contemplative, as far as I know. In the Eastern Orthodox Church “Sister” is a first grade or stage of becoming a nun. Later she becomes “Mother” and then, much later (or often never) she is to become “schema-nun” i.e. hermit-like very strict contemplative who already acquired a very significant wisdom. So, in a sense, there is an “evolution” to more and more contemplation. I have never thought about that until you asked! A typical idea of monastic life is a life within the walls of a monastery, contemplation/prayer and work to support the monastery. It is also a place where lay people can come and get some spiritual advice. But there is much variety within this frame. Some monasteries run orphanages. Some male monasteries run “rehabilitation centres” for ex-criminals who come out and have nowhere else to go. “Run the centres” makes a very formal impression but often monks simply accept those men to live with them, teach them how to pray, eat and work with them etc. (some later leave, some stay in the monastery for ever). Some female monasteries have publishing offices, some teach at Sunday schools etc. Some nuns, for example whose profession is psychology regularly hold seminars, give lectures etc. Yet nothing is institutionalized. A nun who gives lectures is the same in essence as one who lives in a countryside monastery and does menial work or another one, who lives next to the parish church and does some work there. Those variations are understood as “a nun does what is needed right now, out of obedience and according to her talents”. So, the answer would be that some of our nuns do the work which, in the Roman Catholic Church, is called apostolic but no one bothers to institutionalize it because the primary thing is simply being a monastic. And when a person decides to enter a monastery, she is thinking of it as it was in the time of the Church Fathers, “leaving the world”. Having this purpose of a monastic life unobscured no matter what is a strength, I think. Yet, that situation also has disadvantages. For example, there is no guarantee that natural talents of a person would be used; a musician can be sent to take care of cows and her talent ignored entirely. Usually, when a person wishes to be a nun or a monk, they try to find a monastery with a good reputation, solid, with an abbot or an abbess well-known for their faith and attitude. I am not sure if I managed to convey that “organic” attitude which so often annoys Roman Catholics. It is very peculiar and has nothing to do with individualism of Protestants or “relaxed” attitude of hippies.
  21. 2 points
    Lea

    #Big5 - favorite saints!

    Cool to hear the reasons as well - cats are best^^
  22. 2 points
    Francis Clare

    Women's communities no longer around

    I need to clarify my last post. One thing I'm having trouble understanding is the attitude here. I hoped we were past that. That is the main reason I signed off for such a long time. The sniping and passive-aggressive posts really got to me. I thought respect for the opinions of others was a hallmark of VS.
  23. 2 points
    gloriana35

    Parents have other plans for me....

    I very much like Swami Mommy's comments. Perhaps one who has never had children (a vowed celibate) should be careful about commenting - but parents need to accept the choices their adult children make. Your choices in life are your own. It isn't as if (as was true, years ago) you were looking to become an aspirant at 12, and needed parental permission.
  24. 2 points
    JHFamily

    2020 Entrances, Vows, Ordinations

    Luigi, you never fail to amaze me at how many new vocations you are able to share with us. Thank you!
  25. 2 points
    chrysostom

    Biden Is KKK

    I'm still trying to wrestle with what's going on. BLM as a political movement is organised/led by extreme left radicals who throw some other things into the trunk: opposition to "heteronormativity", the traditional family structure, private property ownership. Just take a look at the BLM website's value statements. Of course black lives matter, and racial prejudice still exists - people are not by nature colourblind. BLM is certainly supported by many people of good will who agree that black lives matter and that killings and racism ought to end. But I disagree vehemently with the critical race theory embraced by many or most activists.

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