It’s a Manic Halloween Monday. Boo! Guess I should go out and buy some candy, not that any trick-or-treaters ever ring our doorbell. Seriously. Not. One. Kid. Still, I feel woefully unprepared if I don’t have some real candy on hand — Kit Kats, Hershey bars. The real deal. Our former pastor gave us a bag of Tootsie Rolls and Dots, which would do in a pinch, but we all know that those can’t hold a candle to chocolate.
So, other than Halloween, here’s what’s going on…
Bookshelf: I just finished Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand, What an awesome and inspiring book. I could not put it down. Well, I had to put it down, but I grabbed it every chance I got. If you have not read this book yet, go get it and start reading. Now. The power of the human spirit to survive in the face of the most unbelievable treatment and torture is beyond comprehension.
Soundtrack: We’ve been kind of busy, so it’s been kind of quiet. Olivia just got her new iPod Touch, so she’s been testing it out with her favorites. But every night, as I go to bed, I can hear Mozart softly playing on continuous loop from her bedroom. That’s been her routine for months, maybe a full year. I wonder if that’s contributing to those stellar grades she’s getting in every subject.
From a distance, our front porch looks lovely, with the cornstalk and hay bale decorations. Pumpkins and gourds and corn, oh my.
On closer inspection, we see the damage the squirrels have been doing to the pumpkins. So much for pie.
Then there’s the Indian corn, completely decimated by the chipmunks, who hang there in plain sight, nibbling to their hearts’ content. That last ear of corn is just about finished at this point.
Friday night was the Costume Ball for Olivia the Vampiress,
and Halloween Happenings for Rapunzel.
Look up. It’s fall.
Look down. It’s winter. Although we were spared the worst.
Odds and Ends:
This will be the first year Noah doesn’t don a costume and go out on Halloween night. Makes me feel old. Although he did dress up as Maximilian Kolbe at our parish youth ministry’s All Saints party last night.
Tomorrow I get to participate in Parent Reader Theater in Chiara’s classroom. I’ll be reading Falling for Rapunzel, which not only ties in with Chiara’s Halloween theme but is also a really funny children’s book. A favorite of mine.
On Saturday, Nov. 5, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., I will be signing/selling all four of my books at the St. Thomas Craft Fair in St. Thomas School, Delmar. Look for me to the left of the entrance when you walk into the gymansium. Tell your friends. Walking Together, my book on spiritual friendship, makes a great Christmas gift. My Essential Guide to Prayer and the Mass is a great resource as we change over to the new translation of the Roman Missal. And then there’s my Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Catholic Catechism, which walks you through the entire catechism in plain English, and Parenting a Grieving Child, which focuses on how to help children deal with death and loss. Look over on the left of this page for Amazon links for all of these books. Or contact me directly for signed copies.
We’re going on a field trip again today, over to the Huffington Post. Do you have your signed slip permission slip? I’m over there trying to help people adapt to the new language of the Mass. I’ll start you here and link you there:
By Mary DeTurris Poust
Having come of age in the years after Vatican II, I never knew the Catholic Mass in Latin. In fact, the only version I know is the one that’s been celebrated for the past 40 years. So I didn’t take too kindly to the idea that the words and responses of the Mass would be changing, and I’d have to look at a written guide to get me through the prayers that have rolled off my tongue since childhood.
The impending changes to the English translation of the universal Roman Missal have sparked controversy among Catholics, to be sure. Some wonder why we need a new translation when the old one seemed to be working just fine. They see the new language–which brings the English more closely in line with the original Latin–as a return to a harsher time, a past that no longer fits our modern way of thinking. Others see the changes as a long time coming, a correction of a translation that was always slightly “off.” Whatever side of the fence you’re on, the changes are less than one month away. It’s time to adapt and move forward. The new translation of the Roman Missal will go into effect on the first Sunday of Advent, November 27, which is the beginning of the Church year for Catholics.
So what will these changes mean for you? They will probably feel somewhat strange at first, and no doubt there will be some things that may never feel right. I’m not going to try to convince anyone that referring to Jesus as “consubstantial with the Father” in the Nicene Creed where we once had the almost-lilting “one in being with the Father” is ever going to feel normal, let alone be an improvement. But, if we approach the changes with an open mind and, more importantly, an open heart, we just might find our connection to the Mass reinvigorated for the first time in years, something Catholics in this country could sorely use.
Here are four basic guidelines for making the new Mass your own:
Get to know the Scriptural references behind some of the changes. When I first heard that the short prayer said before Communion was changing, I balked. Continue reading HERE.
We’re going on a field trip again today, over to the Huffington Post. Do you have your slip permission slip? I’m helping people adapt to the new language of the Mass. I’ll start you here and link you there:
I was saying bedtime prayers with 6-year-old Chiara the other night, when she stumbled over a line in the Our Father. Although she’s got the standards pretty much down pat at this point — Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be — every once in a while she switches a word, or looks at us quizzically when she comes upon something that’s just not in her first-grade vocabulary. Trespasses and temptation, for example.
But on this particular night, the slip-up was something much more basic, and something that, oddly enough, caused me to reflect on how I pray the same prayer. So here’s how it went.
Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
MY kingdom come,
MY will be done…
Whoa, there sweetie. That’s supposed to be THY, not MY. And then it hit me. How often do I say that very same prayer with the right words but the wrong spirit? How often do I really want MY will to be done, not God’s will. God’s will after all can be so, well, difficult to deal with, and He’s not always on the same page.
So I learned something new about this old prayer and about myself. Every time I say the Our Father now, that line jumps out at me, and I stop for a second to think about whether I really mean what I’m saying. Am I willing to turn it all over to God, or do I say “thy will” while secretly thinking I’ll have it my way?
I rarely go to the movies and almost never with Dennis, but last weekend I decided we were going to find the time — make the time — to see The Way with Martin Sheen. In recent years, pilgrimage has become an important part of my spiritual journey. And not just because I finally got the chance to go to Rome last year. Nope. In fact, my focus on pilgrimage began long before I’d ever renewed my passport, and that, as it turns out, is as it should be. We are all on a pilgrimage, whether we walk the 800 kilometers of the famed Camino de Santiago de Compostela, or never get past our neighborhood church. (more…)