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Life is tough. Nuns are tougher.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Gee Whiz

Dear Sister, I am an avid follower of your blog. I recently lamented the lack of singing in my local church and decided that I would make more effort to sing hymns to my two young boys during the week. My sister, who lives in another state and only attends Mass at Christmas, asked why I don't try going to another Christian church - she looked in the phone book and found there were any number of nearby alternatives. I know she is only trying to help, but as I am godmother to her daughters, I would really appreciate your assistance in explaining to her why this is an important issue and not a good idea. I don't really have the 'why' clear in my own mind, so I would love to hear your opinion. Thank you very much! God bless :)

Of course, the easiest solution to your problem would be to never, ever complain about anything that happens at your parish during Mass ever again. That way she won't have to offer you any advice about church.

Thank goodness you are the Godmother to her daughters and not the other way around.

You could just go with the old "the Catholic church is the One True Church founded by Jesus Christ while he was alive on earth" line.

You could ask her if she ever would choose to have Cheeze Whiz when she can have actual cheese. She might get some kind of clue from that.

If you really want to explain to her in depth why there is such a big difference between the Catholic Church and the separated brethren you could buy her a copy of "Protestantism for Dummies". Make it clear that you are not calling her a dummy. I have that book myself. Buy yourself a copy, too and then you can tell her that you have a copy too, and you won't be lying.

It's a sin to lie.

I would be tempted to simply tell her that I prefer to go to the Catholic Church and the Mass that Jesus Himself established and not a fourth generation, watered down, make it up as you go along, figure out for yourself what Jesus might have meant, leave out seven whole books of the Bible and change the wording in the New Testament to fit your ideas denomination.

But if she doesn't read the "Dummies" book, she won't know what you mean by that.

Meanwhile I would spend some time mailing her daughters fun Catholic stuff. Holy cards and glow in the dark rosaries, that sort of thing. Hopefully, your sister will have to try to explain the items to them.

Maybe you should also buy her a copy of "Catholicism for Dummies." I have that book, too!


Lawrence said...

SMM, the more I read your blog, the more I thank my Mom for saying the Rosary with my brother and I when we were kids, for putting us in a Catholic School, and for getting me up early on summer mornings during the week so she and I could attend 6:30 am Mass. As often as not, Father McGraine needed an altarboy for those long-ago summer Masses, and I was it. Those things are more precious in my memory than any gifts or presents I ever got.

ZK said...

"Catholicism for Dummies" is a GREAT book!!! It covers the basics really nicely, and then some. Definitely a great resource for new converts, cradle Catholics, and non-Catholics who want to learn.

Another great thing about the Catholic Church: the Holy Eucharist! Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity, the Real Presence of Jesus Christ...amazing! I personally wouldn't trade that for prettier music.

Claudia's thoughts said...

Check out the other Catholic Churchs in your area and see if you like their singing. You may find one you like and join there.

distracted by shiny objects said...

hmmmmmmm...This post doesn't seem very catholic of you, Sr. M&M. In fact, reminds me of the days when I was growing up and the Wilson kids down the street taunted my brother and I for not being Roman Catholic, shouting at us that we were going to hell. I have since converted to "the true religion of God" and have now been told by my born-again in-laws that I'm going to hell for being Catholic. Seems as though I'm destined to be a busy girl in the afterlife. I'm simply hoping there will be dancing and that cake and refeshments will be served.

Scott W. said...

Just as friendly warning: avoid the complete idiot's guide to Understanding Catholicism. Too much error and bias mingled with fact.

Anonymous said...

Hello again sister!
I hope you can offer some good advice on this. But I feel like I deal with this a lot and I don't know how to handle it right.
I am with a group of friends, and we are all devoutly Catholic (together). But sometimes one of us has a problem, and then half of us know about it, half of us don't. It turns into this whole big thing because it is obvious there is an elephant in the room. At one point it kind of hurts because we talk about how we're a family, and yet we don't always share everything. But I also understand that they may not want to share everything with everyone. I don't quite know what to do when this happens because I don't want to get into the drama, or get in the middle, but if something is wrong with a friend I'd want to help. If you're brother had broken his leg, you'd want someone to tell you, right? I know that sometimes faith requires you to keep praying and hoping regardless of whether or not you know all the facts (or any at all for that matter). I hope you can offer something to me.

Mary Kennedy said...

Sorry, this isn't a comment on this posting, but you don't seem to have a place to actually do the asking so I'll ask here. This is something I've wondered about for decades. You know how the Nazis caricatured all Jewish women as ugly Juden Sows? Well how did they square that with their Catholic beliefs about that lovely little Jewish girl, the Blessed Virgin Mary? I have tried and tried to find out anything about this and just can't. Thanks very much.

Anonymous said...

I apprecaite many things on your blog siter and I find it amusing, and I suppose that 99.9 percent of the people reading it are Roman Catholic-which is not surprising-but I am not. A am a Protestant and I am somewhat troubled by your dismissive stance towards Protestantism. That is not how I would escribe my denomination. We are your sisters and brothers in Christ after all, and I don't say anything dismissive about Roman Catholicism to my RC friends. In fact, having been a RC I have great respect for the tradition. (And no, I don't want to be told what a wicked person I am for having left Catholicism. I've been told that; It doesn't go over well with me.

Arkanabar T'verrick Ilarsadin said...

Mary Kennedy,
the short & simple answer is that the overlap between Roman Catholics and the Nazis was, at bets, minimal. The vast majority of high-ranking Nazis were not Catholic, and those who were, typically were also apostate.

Here's a map of Germany, showing which districts voted Nazi in 1932.


Here's a map of Germany, showing where Catholics lived in 1934.


Schelle said...

Dear Sister,
thank you very much for your reply! I have a feeling God is using this issue to open up a conversation between my sister and myself which will (I am praying) lead her back to him. I am also saying the Memorare for her conversion (as well as my own because I could always do with more nudging in the right direction :D) Your answer has helped me with the long email I am writing to her and I sure would appreciate a small whisper from you in God's ear next time you are speaking to Him. Love, Schelle.

D'artagnan said...

loved the Cheez Whiz comparison. As a convert I didn't know I was just feeding on cheese flavored oil, until a gourmet shared with me the true feast of the Eucharist.

Tracy said...

Another comment about the Nazi's. Many of those higher-up in the movement regressed to the pre-Christian pagan myths of the region.