Saturday, July 17, 2010

Sunday Obligation, Recovering From Surgery, Wild Weather, and Martha

My #3 daughter had surgery on her jaw on Thursday. She's doing about as well as you'd expect, for someone who had part of her head taken apart and put back together.

Called to Holiness: Not Stupidity

The point is, she won't be going to Mass tomorrow. Yes, Sunday is a 'day of obligation.' We're expected to help celebrate the Mass on Sunday - and, since we live in America, we can count the Saturday evening Mass as the Sunday Mass. I'll get back to that.

Is my #3 daughter sinning, because we're not hauling her to church tomorrow? I really don't think so. Yes, it's a day of obligation. We're supposed to celebrate Mass.

On the other hand, the Catholic Church is - the occasional excessively-earnest fellow notwithstanding - practical.
"The Sunday Eucharist is the foundation and confirmation of all Christian practice. For this reason the faithful are obliged to participate in the Eucharist on days of obligation, unless excused for a serious reason (for example, illness, the care of infants) or dispensed by their own pastor.119 Those who deliberately fail in this obligation commit a grave sin."
(Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2181)
There's more in the Catechism, about what we're supposed to do with our time on Sundays. (Catechism, Article 3 | The Third Commandment, 2180-2183)

I suppose I could argue that recovering from an operation isn't, technically, an "illness," but I try to be practical, too. That two-item list starts with the words, "for example." I'm taking them at face value. Besides, we've arranged for a Host to be brought to her, after Mass: according to the rules of this parish, diocese, and the rest of the hierarchy.

As I wrote, in "Catholics and the Common Cold," "We're called to holiness - not stupidity."

Rained Out

One of the high points of my year is the Sinclair Lewis Days Parade here in Sauk Centre. It's a fairly major Saturday evening event here. It generally takes about an hour for the parade to pass any given point.

I was particularly looking forward to this one, since the parade route was back on the street where I live. And this year, I was set up to 'webcast' the parade as it went by.

So, we had rain. Quite a lot. The real excitement happened in the afternoon, though, when the sirens went off, warning of a strongly-rotating cloud headed our way. That was the second time this week.

Happily, nobody seems to have gotten hurt - and I haven't heard of property damage. Still, those clouds were - impressive.

More about that sort of thing:

Mary, Martha, and Me

This week's Sunday Gospel reading is Luke 10:38-42, the account of Mary, Martha, Jesus and chores. Father Statz had the deacon time two minutes of silence in today's Mass. I went to the 'Sunday' Mass that's at 5:00 Saturday afternoon, along with my son and #1 daughter. This way, if my wife is up to it (that's another story), she can go to Mass tomorrow morning - and there will still be folks here at the house, to look after #3 daughter.

Where was I? Mary. Martha. Jesus. The deacon's watch. Right.

We'd been told to think about what we're anxious about during that two minutes of silence. I came up with a list that included technical issues with my computer, how my schedule would work if I had about 32 hours every day - or didn't have to sleep, and diabetes.

Okay: so I'm anxious about many things, like Martha. What did Jesus tell Martha?
"The Lord said to her in reply, "Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things. 15There is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her.' "
(Luke 10:41-42)
Maybe I should remember that advice, take a deep breath, be quite for a while - and listen.

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What's That Doing in a Nice Catholic Blog?

From time to time, a service that I use will display links to - odd - services and retailers.

I block a few of the more obvious dubious advertisers.

For example: psychic anything, numerology, mediums, and related practices are on the no-no list for Catholics. It has to do with the Church's stand on divination. I try to block those ads.

Sometime regrettable advertisements get through, anyway.

Bottom line? What that service displays reflects the local culture's norms, - not Catholic teaching.