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Life is tough. Nuns are tougher.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Passed Over

Dear Sister, there is a friend of mine who keeps on arguing with me that we Catholics do not celebrate Passover especially during the designated time of the year like when the Jews used to.  Please help me.

Where in heaven's name did you get the idea that we Catholics DO celebrate Passover?  Does your family have a Seder? After Temple?  Does the youngest child ask what's going on with this dinner and then someone explains the flight of the Israelites from Egypt?  Then you ate apples and honey and bitter herbs?  Is this plate in any way familiar to you?

Matzo, anyone?

I am utterly baffled by this question.  Certainly, we come from a JUDEO-Christian tradition.  Jesus and just about everyone He knew were Jews.  Everyone that started the Catholic Church was Jewish.  St. Peter and St. Paul had a huge argument about letting non-Jews become Christians at all.  (Guess who won?) The Last Supper was actually a Passover Seder.  But on Holy Thursday, when we recall the Last Supper, Seder has nothing to do with the Mass we celebrate.  We celebrate the New Covenant Jesus has brokered with God for our Salvation.  We recall moment when Jesus gives us the Holy Eucharist (which happened at this Seder dinner).  The Old Covenant is over, along with sacrificing doves and  Yom Kippur.

And our "Elder Brothers", as the Pope calls them,  still celebrate Passover every year.  What's this "like they used to" thing?  Pretty soon now, you'll see Matzo go on sale at the grocery store.  And that  wine.

I hope your friend keeps on arguing with you. There are Catholics who celebrate Seder for, I guess, historical re-enactment purposes or in the spirit of ecumenicalism.  But they're on their own.


Krisante said...

Dear Sister, 3 years ago I made the biggest mistake of my life-I aborted my child. I was not pro-life, or even Christian yet, and the choice seemed obvious. I was nowhere near ready for a child, or so I thought. I need a Saint, quite desperetaly, to help me deal with this. I think about this every day and feel such immense guilt. I have never told anyone apart from my then-boyfriend who wanted me to have this abortion desperately. I dont know how to give up the guilt, and honestly, I dont even know if I deserve to ever be free of this guilt.

Anonymous said...

Dear Sister MM,
I'm sure you've seen those FaceBook memes that are all the rage: What my friends think I do, what society thinks I do, What I think I do, What I really do...

Anyway, I thought it would be so great if you could make up one for nuns. I've looked for the template but can't find it.

Anonymous said...

Dear Krisante,
Peace to you. Know that God loves you and wants to heal and welcome you. Please consider the Project Rachel Ministry. You can find resources, prayers, local contact information and welcome at: http://hopeafterabortion.com/

May the Presence of Peace be with you.

Wendy said...

Dear Krisante,
Look up Project Rachel. You may not feel like you even want or deserve to be forgiven, but what God (and your child) wants most is to love and forgive you.

Anonymous said...


God loves you and forgives you! The guilt you feel is normal. It sometimes helps to think of it as our conscience's way of helping us to not repeat the same mistake. Just know that God loves you. In the bible, there are several accounts of forgiveness. Think of King David (an ancestor of Jesus!) who committed adultry with Bathsheba and then had her husband killed! David acknowledged his sin, did penance, and was forgiven. Those accounts are included in the bible so that WE will never lose hope. I would recommend reading about the Sacred Heart of Jesus, revealed to Saint Margaret Mary. Our Lord loved you enough to give His life for you. Always remember that.

Anonymous said...

Dear Krisante,

There is an organization called Rachel's Vineyard that can help you find healing and experience God's love and compassion. Their website is www.rachelsvineyard.org

Peace, Jenna

Anonymous said...

Hi Krisante,
Project Rachel is very helpful for women who have had an abortion:


Dont lose hope, Jesus is loving and merciful.

Peace and God Bless,

Arkanabar said...

the Blessed Virgin is your tender mother who will never reject you, or fail to intercede between you and her Son.
If you are Catholic, I urge you in the strongest terms possible to get yourself to confession. God's mercy for the repentant is absolutely certain there.

Anonymous said...

Dear Sister Mary Martha,Could you please help me? I am struggling with unforgiveness. Is there any saint who i could ask to intercede for me who had a similar problem?

Maureen said...

If your mother was Jewish, and your grandparents, and indeed half of your family - as mine was.....then you do actually celebrate Passover! And when the date happens to coincide with Easter, which occasionally is the case - then the food has to be seen to be believed!
I love both traditions, both are part of me - I suppose it's a bit like being bilingual, I've never had any problems with being Jewish and Catholic.

elfin said...

*sigh* Passover for a Catholic nun? Ridiculous. It must have been posted just to irritate Sister Mary Martha.

Nan said...

Krisante, Saint Gianna Molla was a doctor who was pregnant, diagnosed with a tumor in her womb and was then advised to abort her child so she could live. She died a week after her child's birth.

You can always pray to the Blessed Mother, who chose to follow God's will in giving birth to Jesus.

Know that He loves you more than humans can understand and will forgive you.