All Souls Day Reflection

misty sky

I came a cross this article regarding All Souls Day by Fr. Thomas Rosica CSB and thought I would share it with you.

http://saltandlighttv.org/blogfeed/getpost.php?id=1541

There are those who fear death, but death is simply transformation from being a physical being to a spiritual being in full splendor and when you are in Christ, living your life ethically etc…why fear something so natural as death, natural when it comes in its’ appointed time, not of course by our own hands since we don’t have that right to take our lives, since we did not create ourselves.  I view death from a purely spiritual lens, so there is nothing to fear.

Disrespect of Tradition, Scary Here

Garden

Disdain for Tradition, Scary

I spoke in a previous blog about a path, about forging a path, and while a path forward does require some adaptation and some transformation so as to not be stagnant, what have we gained from a total disdain of all things traditional, of Family, God, Faith and Country?  

I understand having to have a certain level of empathy and yes Jesus did, but he also said sin no more and said clearly there would be consequence for Sodom and Gomorrah.   He may have had tensions and conflict with their legalisms, but he still honored tradition, celebrated the feast days of the Jewish calendar.  He did not indicate disdain for the traditions of his ancestors and when they were using the church as a den of iniquities etc… he went ballistic.  The Latin Rite and other such Masses are a beautiful, sacred and meditative, contemplative form of the Mass that attract young people who seek an intimate mystical connection to the divine, and a return perhaps subconsciously to traditional values.  For this Pope to treat traditionalists and conservatives with such disdain is a stain on him and of great damage to society.  He should be celebrating this and encouraging this, instead of what he is doing, which is purging the Vatican of anything traditionalist and conservative, which will alienate people, will lead to a splinter of Orthodox Catholics forming their own group or joining the Eastern Right Church, and if they do it will serve the Vatican, which has become too liberal and this Pope right to have Catholics leave the faith in droves join the Eastern Right, even Orthodox Anglican or for The Catholic Orthodox Church and refuse to recognize the authority of the Vatican due to corruption etc…  After all, tradition is the glue that keeps things together, you that, you lose the soul, and the traditions of the Catholic faith are beautiful ones.

Amen

It’s About God, and Community

Most PRecious Blood

I spoke about the disconnect between my cultural heritage as an Italian-American Catholic and my theological leaning that are more Conservative Anglican.  That will always be a conflict present in my life to some extent, won’t it?  

Today I realized something.  It doesn’t have to, not if I focus on the core, on the Noahide Laws, Metaphysical Science understanding of life and faith, and Christ, my relationship to the Trinity.  It doesn’t be if I focus when at Mass in the Catholic Church on the presence of Christ, of the Holy Trinity.   If I am not comfortable with the Catholic Rosary, I pray the Anglican rosary, and if I feel more comfortable with the Anglican prayers, I can simply pray those.  Nothing says I can’t, my choice, I have religious liberty, free will.  While the theology I may adhere to, with the exception of the Eucharist, which I do believe transmutes, since Christ said it was his body and blood, not a symbol of, I can still appreciate my heritage.  Today after Mass for example we had the seniors gather for coffee and recall the past, the neighborhood, people from the area that have passed.  It was a beautiful thing.  It was lovely that sense of community, remembering childhood.  It really was a lovely thing.  It doesn’t change the fact that my theology tends more towards the Anglican, conservative Anglican, and traditionalism, but I can still attend Mass, even a feast honoring a saint and appreciate the cultural aspect of it all.  I may not venerate the saints or anything like that, but I can appreciate the sentiment, the dedication of those who do, their sincerity in doing this, and appreciate tradition, these traditions.  They can still provide grounding and a sense of identity, of where I came from, roots.

 

Amen

St Rocco, The Mass, Confirmed It, Again

St. Rocco Mass.  It got to standing room only.  Once again in contrasting this to the secular concert events we have had or months, with empty seats, the message was clear.  What was the message and what is the message with conservative, traditionalist churches and diocese thriving and liberal ones dying?

For one, wake up church, stop with the stupid, which is trying to be modern and hip and with it so to speak, stop dumbing down and stooping to the low level of secular.  Second, people don’t want secular stupidity, what they want is traditionalism, whether they consciously realize it or not.  Tradition, structure, they want it and they need it.  They need good old fashioned tradition and structure from the church, and it doesn’t have to be dull, it can be pure majesty, beauty, awe inspiring, filled with love, but though it can be Agape Love, like any good parent, it also has to have it’s element of tough love.  It has to have both and it can.  When I saw those pews filled and that we had to add folding chairs and then people having to stand, it just reinforced that the priority of funding and securing funds, priority for the arts program has to be a cantor, pianist and choral ensemble, the Mass, Concerto Masses, Latin and Italian Mass, these have to be the priority, not secular concerts, not the secular.  This Mass yesterday reinforced my resolve to bring that truth home in my meeting this week with our Monsignor and the Cathedral’s Music Director.  Not that one can’t do secular stuff, but that is not what ought to be the priority, even for funding.   It really made me want to be a part of the faith even more, find a way to be part of the arts within the faith even more, coordinate events related to the faith even more.  It really was a beautiful thing and though, due to work I had to do, due to a glitch of sorts that came up, so I couldn’t participate fully in the day, it was still a beautiful thing and a reaffirmation that what I need to focus on is the sacred, the traditional because that is what people crave, want and need.

Amen

 

What Do You Do With…?

Holy Ghost

As I was realizing that the Festival of San Gennaro was right around the corner and I had done all I could to coordinate things,  all I could, to get things moving as quickly and efficiently as possible, but was not getting as far as I should, things not moving as they should suddenly I was taken back in time.  

I was reminded of the movie The Sound of Music and when she is walking down the aisle to get married, the nuns start singing “What do you do with a problem like Maria?”  The song goes on to say that there’s many a thing you ought to tell her, many of thing she out to know, implied that she just doesn’t get stuff she ought to get.  Again it asks what to do with a problem like Maria.  The nuns had to acknowledge that you can’t really do much.  There are those who will never be focused, never be like a laser beam with their ideas, quick to action when action is what is needed.  There are maybe lots like Maria out there, who ought to get it, from how to treat friends and colleagues etc.., to how to be timely in their actions, reactions, have a sense of things, but don’t.  Often as a result projects that we may have been really hopeful about, had lots of enthusiasm about in the beginning, that can get crushed when you feel you are dealing with a Maria, male or female, that type of situation, person.  This birthday could have been one with a few smiles for me, but frustration from feeling like a lone ranger in getting things off the ground, moving etc.. take away the smiles this birthday.  Add on top of that the fibromyalgia acting up, and my frustration with this Pope, the “social justice, PC” confusion he has created, other factors and not feeling very smiley.  I realize also that I view Catholicism really more as a culture aspect, an aspect of heritage.  My true Christian soul is perhaps more in line, tune with let’s say the Neighborhood Church of the West Village, that Protestant, Congregational type of Christianity, a strong sense of the church being the one to foster the arts.   I guess my conflict or so called conflict, which I thought was about Jesus and who he was is more of one within my framework of faith as a Christian, in terms of “Is my soul Catholic or Anglican Conservative.  That is really what I need to explore and I intend to, but how?

I think that seeing how I would feel, fit into someplace like the NCGV and still respect my heritage, including the Catholic faith, but really see where I feel truly authentic and myself, where I feel I can fully embrace the theology.  The exploration really is about my Christianity, what does that mean to me, how do I identify myself, in terms of being Christian.  This is going to be interesting, but necessary.   As for my role as Arts Associate at MPB church, let’s see how that goes, if we can get organized for the arts program.  Not holding my breath on that, not totally.  I hope the church survives and thrives, really do.  There has to be a lot more of everyone being proactive, efficient and organized, moving at a solid fast pace to accomplish what is to be accomplished.  We shall see, only time can tell.  One thing I do know is that the ballon of hope for great collaboration etc…has been somewhat deflated.  Who knows it might just turn around right?

Amen

The Church, Cultural Center, Why Not?

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The church is often mocked, the Catholic Church in particular, as well as the conservative evangelical.  That is quite funny considering.

The church was since Biblical times, as was the King’s court, the main patron and supporter of the arts, the talent that was present in those times with the writing of the psalms, and if you read the Catholic bible additional poetic books, you see how the prophets, and those anointed in the faith were great patrons of the arts, since Saul was the initiator of Patrons, calling on David to do his magical thing with music. As I realize this and as I look at the history of classical music, the beauty of it, seems to me that churches should be patrons of the arts and sciences, but in a way that connects to true and conservative biblical principles. This is what I hope my work with my colleague Bill will achieve, this creation of a church that works with nearby colleges, artists that have connection with foundations for young people and even older people looking to start a second career. The potential is tremendous, but it has to be done with good planning, even obtaining sponsors, has to be done in a way that is well organized, solid proposal.  Can the church be a beacon and center for the arts, for true formation of a right mindset in the Word?  Yes, it can, it was in the past, and it can be again, but it needs to avoid being Liberal Progressive Social Justice to the hilt, or to any degree.  If it does and stays true to conservative Biblical truth, makes the arts a vehicle for that, it can achieve that and celebrate the cultures of its’ members.  It can be done.

Some links for your reading on patronage of the arts and the church, Catholic Church:

https://www.ncronline.org/news/media/vatican-revives-its-ancient-patronage-arts

https://www.cardus.ca/comment/article/2792/the-churchs-role-in-art/

Amen

New Year, New Start, Where to Start?

soaring eagle

As August 4th approaches, my birthday, my 52nd birthday, I ask myself what do I want, what gift do I want the Lord to bring me?

I guess I could complicate it, get overly analytical about it all, go through a whole childhood issues analysis, get all academic and intellectual about it all.  At the end of the day it really is not that complicated at all.  In a nutshell I wish to never depend or rely on the government for anything, not for sustenance, or for anything other than homeland security and mass transportation  I wish to be totally self reliant, no matter what my health situation is, no matter what my situation in life is period.  I wish to do what I love which is the arts, and life coaching, to earn my daily bread through that in some way, and see past seeds I have sown bear fruit. I also want to preserve the parish I am working on helping to preserve and help grow.  I wish to do solo gigs and earn my daily bread, to do seminars, earn my daily bread.  I also wish to keep volunteering for the parish, it pleases my heart, spirit and soul.  I wish to have a place to call totally my own and a group of artists to work with and record my material with, to pray with daily, which I have formed, my own group that prays, jams, performs and records together.  That is what I wish for my 52nd birthday.  What about the icing and cherry on the cake as they say?  That would be a really great and dependable, reliable like minded artistic, as well as like minded worldview kind of guy who shares my heritage, faith, and conservative worldview, values to share it all with, to artistically create, jam etc… with, even perform with, real partnership.  Someone whom I can start this Gossamer Wings Arts Circle with, immediately. 

If anyone wants to know what my prayer is for my birthday, which is coming up in a few days, this is is, in a nutshell.