No, not my own apartment. I refuse to find that until I have a job that can actually cover my expenses. No sense in getting into financial and legal trouble without good reason!
Oh, and I noticed that someone was typing in “Can I pray to Saint Anthony for a girlfriend” and found my blog. Because I’m random, I’ll answer that quickly: Yes, of course you can ask for the intercession of Saint Anthony for a wonderful, god-fearing girlfriend or boyfriend. I’m more partial to Saint Raphael myself, but I’m sure that any Saint up in Heaven is willing to intercede so that you can find a special girlfriend (or boyfriend if you are a young lady) to grow in faith with. So, random person, there’s your random answer.
But- that is not what I wanted to talk about. You see, I have found a home parish!
There are a lot of reasons I love Saint Awesome’s Church. For one thing, my wonderful trad friend soon to possibly be a nunny friend kept at me to go to it. That in itself means something, because she wouldn’t send me into the general den of Illicitness and Outright Heresy that has become my diocese.
For another, there are actually statues hanging around. And no, they aren’t post-modern twisted pieces of metal that signify exactly what a liberal arts degree gets you (nowhere, in case you wanted to know) nor are they so forgotten that the paint is chipping off. When I walked into Saint Awesome’s, I immediately thought, with relief and a sigh “Oh dear God. I’m finally back in a Catholic Church”. As Sister Allie puts it (her nickname, she aint sister yet) they haven’t “wreckovated” the Holy out of this church. THANK GOD. Even Mr. Serrano, who has some very irreverent tendencies, behaves 10 billion times better at Saint Awesome’s than he ever did at the Cathedral. I’ve only had to smack him once with the missal, and after Father Max Orthodox taking off his hat that he wore to Mass, I haven’t had to wrestle him for it. Seriously, what is it with guys and their hats?
For another, and this is a BIG REASON- there is a 24 hour adoration chapel. Any time of the day, or night, that I can, I can go there and worship. Sometimes there’s a few people there, sometimes its just me and an old church lady or church man, sometimes (and I relish those times rather selfishly) its me and Dios.
Also, something that endeared me to this place was the total lack of racist attitudes. Sure, Father Max Orthodox made a little joke about God making bread and the black bread being burnt, the white bread being underbaked, and the brown bread being just right upon meeting Mr. Serrano- which was a little awkward, but it was hardly meant to be racist and was all in good fun. No, real racism is when you get the points and stares, because at a “white” parish you’ve brought a Mexican with you. Or when you go to a “Mexican” parish (because remember, Guatemalans don’t exist!) you get glares from the women because how dare you learn Spanish when you’re just a stupid white b***h, and you’re never going to fit in anyways, because white people can’t speak Spanish. Oh, and white people can’t be real Catholics, and its very politically incorrect to be all enamored of the Virgin of Guadeloupe. If you’re white. So “stop trying to be Mexican”. That one came from a future cuñada.
HEY. Shout out to you Latino people- sometimes, you guys are actually worse than white racists. At least most of the white racists have learned to shut up. PS- Sí, hablo español y si no quieres sufrir de mucha pena, mi consejo es que piense muy bien duro antes de que abres la boca. I might have some grammar issues when I speak, but I understand it bien claro.
Besides Saint Awesome’s being a place where Mr. Serrano and I are accepted, language barrier and all, there’s a lot of diversity there anyway- lots of Polish Catholics, some random Filipinos, occasionally some Latin Americans, and a few black people (some are from Africa, and have the awesomest dresses).
What is most striking, however, is the number of kids. There are kids everywhere. It is not unusual to see a family of 6 with four kids. There are also young ladies in the parish who are obviously young single moms barely out of adolescence- and they are being supported and raising their kids! People don’t glare at families with fussy babies at Mass- they smile! And on top of it all, there are kids and adults in the parish who have severe disabilities!There’s even adopted kids!
Why is that a good thing? Why is it good that there are single moms who are younger than I am (and I am young) raising children, and people with severe disabilities like Down Syndrome? Simply put, its because its human. I’m sick of the Culture of Death and its insistence that everyone be absolutely perfect to gain the right to have children, be a mother, be anyone. I’m sick of the culture of abortion that constantly tells women that they aren’t worth being a mom, or that only those who are deemed perfect are allowed to live.
I’ve seen it in the parishes, how this cultural idea has crept in. Want to know a quick way for assessing whether or not your parish is going to go down Heresy Lane and possibly kill your soul? Look for the absence of children, disabilities, “mistakes”- all of the messy elements of human life. Listen for absolute silence during the Mass- no babies crying, no toddlers giggling and causing mischief, no young ones singing at the top of their lungs during the refrains, as if God can hear them better that way. Look for all of the trappings and decorations of the “modern age” in which statues are non-existent, and the crucifix looks like it was hung in front ever so grudgingly, as if to say “I’m only up here because someone threw a fit to the Bishop…if not for that I wouldn’t be here either”.
Saint Awesome’s is going to be my home. It already feels like home! Although Mr. Serrano and I are only going every other Sunday now (due to gas prices, we have to hold back on the traveling to the big city) we are going to be attending when we can. I hope that when I graduate I can perhaps come back and see what I can offer the community.
There’s just so many things I love about this place, orthodoxy (aka minus the BS) being one of them. I think the biggest part of it, however, is the adoration chapel. It seems like every place that exposes the Blessed Sacrament 24-7 tends to help bad people become good, become great, become better.
There’s also a last reason…and this is partly due to my fuzzy feelings for Father Max Orthodox- I never feel comfortable in the pews. Partly due to the homilies, partly due to the atmosphere, I’m more acutely aware of my failings, and how I have the potential to do so much better. Everything, no matter how uncomfortable, is always said with love, but it is never something that makes me comfortable.
I much prefer this to the old, self-satisfied thinking that the old homilies at other places would bring. Instead of patting myself on the back for a job well done, and to hell with the rest, I’m being gently nudged to think, pray, and contemplate more.
What an amazing church.
Oh, and in case anyone out there is wondering what brought this post on after a long long long time of no posting (sorry, swamped with exams and projects!!) it would have to be: