With the writing of this blog, I had hoped to share the beauty of the contemplative life with those similarly inclined, as well as to devote a few posts to my humble little ministry of advocating on behalf of other grandmas and grandpas who, in their golden years, find themselves sick, poor and alone. I had wanted to counter the mean-spirited urban myths about the poor that are currently circulating in social media and other arenas (like The White House!), and I aimed to bring to light some lesser-known saints against whose lives we can compare our own.
The process of writing, and everything pertaining thereto, has been remarkably time consuming. Meanwhile, my congenital illnesses have intensified to the point that the time it takes to accomplish the mundane tasks of life have grown to an extent that my prayer life, the primary focus of my religious vocation, has begun to be infringed upon. I cannot afford to hire an attendant to assist me, therefore the blog had to be put aside.
I have come to the precipice of this decision several times before, but because hope springs eternal, and because I am a natural writer, I kept falling back into writing the blog. I really have to stop myself now.
I have retired most of what I wrote, with the exception of those topics for which I did a lot of research and others of possible interest.
Because many items are needed to address my growing physical problems, however, I have to keep the DONATION button active on this page, so that gifts may be given by friends. Recently, my rolling walker was stolen, and it had to be replaced. I also needed some special eyeglasses for my extremely compromised vision. [It is expected that one day I will be blind from macular degeneration and other problems.] A few friends and their friends got together and helped provide some of these important medical aids. The next project is an electric bed, so that I may stop sleeping in my recliner.
In the not so distant past, religious persons like hermits and anchoresses were supported spiritually by the church hierarchy, and physically by the townspeople, who would come to the window of the anchoress, or the entrance to the cave of the hermit, and bring food and other necessaries. It was understood at that time that the prayers of the person who had been set aside for God had great value to society at large as well as to the individuals who relied upon the advice of those who had been called by the Lord to live with Him alone. I have a regular retirement income, but it is too small to fund the medical equipment and supplies that I need which are not paid for by Medicare. A little help is required, When friends and well-wishers have difficulty getting to me in person, the DONATE button is convenient.
The many scandals that have come to light in recent years have shattered the trust that society once had for the Catholic Church, and Catholics, in general. First, we had the pedophilia scandals, and recently we have learned of "drug fueled homosexual orgies" inside the Vatican. A monsignor was arrested, but it was clear that his activities would not have been able to occur if higher-ups were not condoning it, ignoring it, or assisting it! So many vows have been violated in this most recent story, I hardly know where to start.
Vows of "poverty, chastity and obedience" are very basic. Keeping the vow of chastity, in particular, is the bedrock of religious life. There are other, much more challenging, and deeper aspects of spiritual life once chastity has been conquered. Chastity is just the beginning. Every Catholic is expected to practice chastity, to get a grip on the basest of the animal instinct, but this is the religious principle that is most ignored by most the people, both vowed and laity.
If the higher-ups in the Catholic world are having "drug fueled homosexual orgies," how could anyone trust me to be who I say I am, other than those who know me well? I am nothing and no one. I do not have any status or title. How could I expect to be assisted by good Christian people when the entire Catholic Church has such a bad reputation at present, and there are so many scammers active in our society?
Because of the growing secularization of our culture, it has become common for monastic institutions to rely upon the work of their hands in order to support themselves financially. Physical work, in particular, allows one to work and pray at the same time, whereas more intellectual pursuits, like writing a blog, takes up more brain matter than is wise, particularly if time for prayer has grown short, due to the necessity of attending to medical issues.
Instead of writing the blog, I will be making arts and crafts items for sale. I do not know yet where I will sell these things, since I am mostly housebound due to disabilities, but I will wait until I have accumulated a good stock, and deal with the marketing issues later. Being of an artistic nature, I am not very good at sales. Anyone with experience who would like to assist me, I would be most grateful. (By "assisting," I mean actual assistance, rather than telling me what to do. I have far too much unsolicited advice, at present.)
I am painting small religious paintings and will make the frames myself. Additionally, I will produce fine rosaries and chaplets. My crocheted chapel veils and lace baptismal blankets are very beautiful. "Stocking stuffers," such as hair ties made by knitting over elastics, lace book markers, and religious jewelry such as earrings, bracelets and necklaces will be made.
While I am painting, crocheting, or bending silver wire, I pray. Sometimes I interiorly recite the Jesus prayer ("Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy upon me, a poor sinner") and sometimes the Ave Maria. Sometimes I remain in the company of the Lord, in the manner of Brother Lawrence, who said that he was as close to God amongst his pots and pans as within the cloister, where the monks were chanting the Divine Office.
A notice will be published on this page when my art works are available online.
I will continue to pray for all of you. I will be available for correspondence, if you leave a comment on this post. This blog is set up to intercept comments before they are published, so I will receive your message and respond to you, without publishing your communication.
The blog has been a joy to write, at times. I would like to thank the few people who responded to it, and I apologize to regular readers, who may miss it. While it did not produce the response that I would have liked, I have no worry. This is how the Lord leads me. He shows me what He wants me to do by blocking all avenues to anything else! It is a great blessing.
May you all have peace. May the Lord cause his light to shine down upon you.
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