Comfort Zone – Post 2
I’m making my way back to full-union with the Church. Sigh. It’s a process y’all. And I’m trying to be honest about it, so that others know it is ok and you can always come home.
After the Pandemic, we didn’t have a set Priest here in our MIL Parish. Lack of Confession (Reconciliation) and such created the perfect storm of “why bother?” And “Let’s just stay away.” The new Priest has been here for a year or so – maybe 18 months. I can’t remember. And I sent him an email, literally titled, “Worst Catholic Ever?” I’ll spare you the text, but suffice to say, I set up Confession for my husband and I. Neither of us had been for at least 18 months. In our defense, it’s NOT readily available. And the Parish here has not been well-manned. But – we could have arranged it, so I shall step off that broken record.
We worked to get on his calendar, and it ends up, we confessed our sins on Fat Tuesday. What a great way to kick off the Lenten season. On a related note, we have a Parishioner who has a very sick child, and they will make their way back to the states soon. In the meantime, I have taken over their CCD Class. You see, during confession (here in Italy, a lot of times you are looking at the Priest. It takes some getting used to.), the Priest and I also spoke about my not feeling like I belonged here at this Parish. So many things happened within the Command Chaplaincy, and rude parishioners… that many of us backed off. It’s a strange thing to come from being so active and fairly respected in your home Diocese, to being treated very poorly and disrespected by folks. I’m not the only one this happened to, and it’s in the past… but you now have a little background for when I say “feeling like I didn’t belong”. I mean it was to the point, I was doubting my faith.
So back to Father. He said, “we may need you to teach a CCD Class”. HA – how could I say no! I wouldn’t have anyway… it’s just funny. He’s done so much good for this little Military Parish. Including recruiting a teacher for CCD. I had taken this year off as I was truly unsure if I was going to be able to manage my son being so far away (5018 miles, but who’s counting?!). And my husband and I just thought we needed a break this year. God knew what I needed, and I am excited about the next few months.
I got a little head’s up about extra confession coming up this coming weekend, and I decided that after my class and I met, and chatted through introductions, we’d pick up one of my favorite children’s confession booklet and talk about Examination of Conscience as it pertains to the Ten Commandments. It’s by TAN Books, and it’s called My Confession Book (click on it and it will take you there). First published in 1958! Old school. The kids really enjoyed it. And Father stopped by to talk to them about confession and invite them to partake this weekend. YAY
During our discussion in class, one of the children said when he went to confession it was like a huge weight was lifted and he was floating. Y’all – it’s so true. My head was so chaotic as our life got crazy here in Italy… and being away from Sacraments during the Pandemic and after – it really took its toll. We are already feeling so much better about things here.
It’s now the 3rd week of Lent and we are enjoying being involved and going to Mass/Being in full union again. The first weekend of Lent I was in Assisi with a group of Catholic Women (Yes, I do owe you a post or ten). We have been participating in the meatless Pot Lucks on Friday evenings (I will share my recipes used soon). We will hopefully go to Stations of the Cross this weekend. Sunday I am bowling with children from a local Orphanage here in the Naples Area. I love kiddos, so that will be fun.
Because of anxiety and depression, I had honestly let a lot of things go… and I’m also purposing to be a better and more joyful home-maker, and make the house more pleasant for my husband too. It’s not like I was horrible to him, but I don’t have a full-time job here, and I could do more… so I am. Today, I am baking corn bread, and organizing a few things at home. We also have a guest bed here, and the tech is coming to put it together this evening and then we will officially have a guest room – YAY.
Signing off for today. Tomorrow, I should have a Gospel Reflection going live. I will share it then.
Love, Hugs & Blessings,