Priesthood Sunday – A Rosary for the Sanctification of Priests

Happy Priesthood Sunday!

I’m not sure how many people really “participate” in this occasion but I know for me, I send a quick text or email to the priests in my life who have been particularly influential in my spiritual life.

But you don’t need to be good friends or close to a priest to let them know that you care. You can simply pray for them. And I think, especially in light of this “Summer of Scandal,” our good priests could use our prayers now more than ever.

My parish is one the few that I know of that has dedicated a special page on their website to the Church abuse crisis and the McCarrick scandal. They have been updating the site with relevant articles and commentary and recently, they added this page –  Rosary for Sanctification of Priests.

I think it’s just a good way to show support for all of the clergy right now.

Another idea that I had was to pray for those priests who have been laicized due to abuse allegations. I think a lot of the times, we’d rather not think about these men as being worthy of our prayers or of our time do to the heinous nature of their actions. But, we simply can’t think that way. It’s times like this I remember that there is no sin too great for God’s mercy and forgiveness. I oftentimes just pray for these men to repent. That’s all we can ask. The rest is up to God. In a lot of cases, many of these men  are deceased, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t pray for their souls.

My Archdiocese lists the name of every priest who has been removed from ministry or laicized. I made it a point to write down their names and pray for them by name. Maybe a good idea would be to find out if your diocese lists yours and do the same.

On this Priesthood Sunday, give thanks for the good priests (the majority of them are!) that you’ve encountered, and pray that more good young men will remain docile to the movements of the Holy Spirit and heed the call to the priesthood, if that be God’s will for them.

 

Addicted to the Scale – When the Number Rules Your Life

This is my first Guest Blog Post from a friend of mine.  I was close to tears reading this.  She sent this to me asking where and how she could spread the word because no doubt other women can relate.  She didn’t want to start her own blog, so in the meantime I’m posting it here. Please comment and share because this is all-too common and I feel that MANY women (maybe even some men), no matter what the scale says, are feeling these emotions right now and could use this “Challenge” to empower them and finally say NO to those numbers.

I have an addiction.  On the spectrum of addictions, it’s not the worst.  It’s not even crippling.  I guess you would say I am a high functioning addict.  I can carry about my day normally, but I think about it all day.  I think about the next time I get to do it.  I tell myself I need to stop.  I wonder if I can beat it the next day and the day after and never do.  I am addicted to my scale.  I get a literal high when I see the number go down and I beat myself up all day when it goes up.  It can make or break my mood in one beep of the digital display.

It is never one beep though.  There is a system.  Every morning, I wake up.  I can feel my heart rate pick up as I go down to the bathroom.  I wonder if I will see a new and lower number.  Will today be the day I hit an all time low?  I take all my clothes off and I pee so as to be sure to rid myself of every last ounce.  Then I tap the button with my foot and step on.  I don’t look down until it has beeped.  Then I do it again.  I take the best of three.  Sometimes I take the best of five.  On my worst days I take the best of 7.  When it is up, I remind myself of the foods I ate the day before and chastise myself for not having more self control.  I tell myself I sabotaged my goals once again.  I tell myself I will do better today.

I am abusing myself.  I know that I am.  It is mental and emotional abuse.  It is not something I would ever allow another human being do to me.  That is the irony.  I am a strong woman.  I would never let someone treat me the way that I treat myself when I am locked away in that dark tiny room with my own thoughts.  The mantra in my head from my childhood, “If you just lost 5 lbs, you’d be so pretty.”  It’s on repeat.  It’s ridiculous.  I know that.  And except for that pesky number, I actually really like myself.  I like who I am.  I am kind and friendly and fun.  I am a pretty woman.  I’m a size 8 pant size.  I am currently the thinnest and healthiest I have ever been in my life.  Another irony, but it’s not enough.  It’s not “ just 5 more lbs”.

This becomes even more ridiculous when you know what I have done in my life.  A little over 9 years ago I was over 200 lbs. and a size 18 pant size.  I worked diligently to lose over 50 lbs by slowly knocking out one bad habit after another.  I have run 3 half marathons, one full and many other shorter races.  I have given birth to 3 kids in 2 years (this includes running one of those half marathons 19 weeks pregnant with twins).  I regularly get compared to Anne Hathaway in my appearance. Do you want to slap me across the face yet?  I want to slap me too. 

So today, I woke up and went down to the bathroom.  This time, instead of hopping on the scale to see what “damage” I had done after a fun night out with friends, I took the batteries out of the scale.  I put the scale upstairs in the bedroom closet.  I put the batteries in the kitchen.  No more scale.  I am not going to lie to you and say never again.  I am giving myself 3 months.  Today is February 8th.  I will not bring it out until May 8th.  I am scared.  Truly terrified.  I am afraid that if I can’t monitor my weight and keep myself in check, I will be a size 18 again in no time.  I don’t know why, because I’m not going to change anything else except for not getting on the scale.

I am not doing this just for myself.  I am also doing it for my daughters.  The twins are too young still, but my 3 year old is not.  She is old enough to watch me.  She is old enough to ask me if she can get on the scale too.  And she has.  She thinks it is fun.  It beeps.  I think it is heart breaking.  I would never want my daughter, who is beautiful, smart, kind and funny to ever think that she is not these things because of a number.  It will be bad enough that she will have to battle with society about what is “beautiful” when she gets older.  She does not need it from her own mother too.  I know that I am the first and most important model of what healthy is.  And if it weren’t for the scale, I would consider myself very healthy.

This seed to stop obsessing about my weight was planted a few days ago.  Two people posted things on facebook.  One was about how inaccurate scales really are in telling us how healthy we are or are not.  The other was a before and after picture of a woman who had gained 10 lbs in the last year and placed 5th in a fitness competition.  10 lbs!  Ten.  Pounds.  She is a lean mean muscle machine.  I’ll give you one guess what my New Year’s Resolution is, to gain lean muscle. 

So now the scale is away.  Nothing else is going to change.  I’m going to continue to eat clean, workout out every day.  Get stronger.  Try not to beat myself up in the process if I indulge in the occasional baked treat or pizza night with my amazing husband or the even rarer night out with friends.   But now my goal isn’t just to get stronger physically, but to also get stronger mentally and emotionally.  I need to do it for myself first.  I need to do it for my daughters.