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Life is tough. Nuns are tougher.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Like a Good Neighbor

Is there a point in praying for a change in people who have no intention of changing? We've had no offers on our house and I am still in an unhappy relationship with neighbours that seem to get more vindictive with no provocation...I'm praying for myself to rise above it as well...


No, they're going to Hell.


I'm kidding.


We think of miracles as outward signs, tangible proof of God's mercy.  The lame walk and the Parkinson's disappears. But there are other miracles that aren't seen. The softening heart, the finding of forgiveness.  All of those things can come from prayer.


So don't despair. For one thing, despair is a sin. With God there is always hope.


We don't know the details of your situation. I'm not asking you to provide them. We'd still only be hearing your side of the story, although we're assuming you are dealing with the neighbors from Hell, who play heavy metal music at all hours and scream across the yard and the house at each other using all types of foul language as beer bottles roll down the driveway.  They are Satan worshippers who don't pick up after their dog.  Or dogs. Dangerous dogs who may eat one of their children or the mailman.


Here's some help: Jesus still loves them. And you, too. He has your back. What is the point of praying for them?  Jesus loves them. If you want to be in harmony with Jesus, you'll want to love the people he loves, which is everybody.


Sometimes it's no fun to be a follower of Jesus.  Then on top of how impossible Jesus' demands are, you can't sell your house and get away from these people.


You do know about St. Joseph?  Have you buried him in the yard yet?  I know a lot of people are rather horrified by this old Catholic wives talely ritual, but a lot of folks swear by it. I don't have a problem with it. I have yet to hear any objection from priests, bishops, cardinals....you can buy a little kit at any Catholic goods store. 


If it bothers you to actual bury a statue in your front yard, which is entirely understandable, at least turn to St. Joseph for help.  His neighbors were way worse than yours and he also had to move his family. He's got your back.

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

The best piece of advice I ever heard was this (I've replaced a certain inappropriate word with "jerk"):

"“Pray for the jerk. It won’t make him less of an jerk, not necessarily. But it might make you less of one.”

Marion Teague said...

can I tell a little story here? A friend of mine is a young widow with a son, now teenaged. At school her son was bullied by a lad, and what my friend called this boy would be unprintable here. Then one day the bully boy came to her door - to apologise! He said his grandmother had died, and "now he knew what it was like".
My friend is not religious at all, but she was powerfully moved by that.

Claudia's Genealogy Blog said...

I lived in New Jersey and my husband had lost his job and we wanted to move back home to PA. The house was for sale from March to.....I had heard about St Joseph and I went to the Catholic Store and bought the statue and followed the instructions of the saleswoman. She actually said "Are you selling a house?"

I buried him and said my prayers and the house was sold within 3 to 4 weeks. I often wondered what the non Christian guy thought if he ever dug St Joseph up???

Anonymous said...

Sounds like Sister has described my EX-neighbors. Except she forgot the movie theater setup outdoors, barking dogs, trapping animals to let the dogs loose on, and the fact that they are Jehovah's Witnesses. Hang in there, as everything happens in God's timing. It took us FOUR years to sell our house, but it finally did sell. We lost our life savings on it. I prayed and prayed (and buried St. Joseph 4 years ago), and finally prayed that no one nice would buy my house as I would feel bad for them. Well, no one nice bought my house, and the whole deal from contract to closing was a nightmare. Be careful what you pray for! The good thing... the highway going through the middle of the neighborhood opened FOUR days after we sold it and I am sure it is worth much less now. God answered my prayers and got me out of there in His time... and He will do the same for you.

mph said...

Thanks Sister and everyone else. I'll try not to take offence at the "jerk" comment...although not necessarily aimed at me could do without it. Seem to have a lot of stressful things going on at the moment and the never-ending, always-escalating neighbour situation is the last straw.

Anonymous said...

Hello, Sister Mary Martha! It was so cool of you to visit the Religion forum on Ravelry!

Anonymous said...

Am going to put my question here because i dont see an email add

Ive been stuck at entry level in my job for four years despite trying my best - and asking ST. Joseph and St. JoseMarie

I can accept no for an answer. Would praying for a visible sign in this case be evil

Beth said...

This is a wonderful message. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Aren't you supposed to dig St. Joseph up when you sell and put him in an honored place in your new home? That's what I did and the whole thing worked beautifully. Our house sold within a week and our new house was move in ready. And my husband doesn't believe....!

Connie said...

Learn how to use the TOOLS of sacramentals-I am a Catholic, very active in the church. Get some Holy Water, (put it in a squirt bottle) and spray the perimeter of your yard proclaiming the name of Jesus. Do the same with Blessed Salt. Here is a link http://www.claretiantapeministry.org/page.asp?t=Blessed%20Salt

When you attend mass, put the problem of the neighbors on the altar at the prayers of the faithful. Say Rosaries for the Lord to resolve the issues.

Read the book, Prison to Praise by Merlin Carothers. It is a very quick read. http://www.foundationofpraise.org/home.html
I read it over 35 years ago and it changed my life. Praise God for everything. When the bad neighbors are doing stuff, start praising God! At mass there is a part that states "we do well, always and everywhere to give you thanks" When we praise God for things in our lives, God works!

mph said...

Thanks Connie.

Arkanabar T'verrick Ilarsadin said...

@Anonymous, you're absolutely correct. From the post to which Sister Mary Martha linked in asking about it,

"Because the most important part of the ritual is that once the house does sell and (and it will), you must dig him back up and take him with you to the new house where he must be honored."

SrMeribeth said...

Actually, nothing magic about the intercession of St. Joseph. One does not have to "bury" him. Just put him in a prominent place or in your window as a reminder to pray and have faith. My mom was a realtor and St. Joe came through in the worst economies.

Colleen said...

Oh my gosh I am so glad to have found your sight. Love your sense of humor and your good advice. I have recently found myself the distributor of St. Joseph statues. So far no sales, but one of my friends went from now showing for a month to several within a couple of weeks, so I think he is praying for her.

Susanna said...

I'm just starting my journey, from Protestant to Catholic, but I would imagine if you've been stuck in a job for 4 yrs, perhaps you're praying for the wrong thing?
Perhaps asking for the strength and courage, to make the changes you need in your life, is a better idea.

eaucoin said...

When a friend in our church was trying to sell her house I was inspired to offer her a St. Joseph novena. She told me she asked St. Joseph, but then remembered her neighbour has been waiting even longer to sell. She felt bad about that but she started the novena. Her neighbour's house sold in nine days, her own in ten, and she said that she realized that when she expressed sorrow about their neighbour's house not selling, that was a prayer too. The experience convinced her children that St. Joseph was listening, and it felt great to be working for him.

Anonymous said...

Susanna, good luck and many blessings for your journey. I just finished my year of inquiry and RCIA and was confirmed and had first communion on Easter vigil. I have to say, it's well worth the journey. And it doesn't stop when you are confirmed. My family has been very supportive of my change from Protestant to Catholic, I hope yours is too! Jennie

Laura said...

Anonymous and Sarah, I'm praying for your conversion, too!