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?

thumbs_light-pink-musical-notes-and-butterflies-background-header

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.

Why I Came Home.

Holy Ghost

The Roman Catholic Magisterium is crucial to Catholic cohesion, and identity, so is a cohesive doctrine, and worldview.  Why does this matter, who cares?

I realize I care, very much.  I realized this as I saw this Pope push aside conservative, in a sense show a level of disdain for pure conservatives like Burke, Muller, and oddly enough in reading a meditative prayer from a book about auras and chakras, one of the prayers talks about accepting the challenge of being a vessel of change, to eradicate the Luciferian spirals of Sodom and Gomorra, destructive use of energies of the male and female energies, a few other things.  It did along with my scratching my head about this Pope, seeing the beauty, young filling at the recent Latin Masses we have had at church, made me realize that the Catholic church if it stays on the right path, has much to teach, much other in terms of life and spiritual truth.  It is a holistic faith, it understand that the Bible is to be understood always in context, sometimes even multiple contexts at the same time.  It understands logic and emotion, science and faith, all things balanced and combined, not one or the other.  It also has a very clear, when those who shepherd the flock do, it has a clear set of boundaries, and those boundaries are important to the church as whole and to community, at a micro and macro level.  Without those clear boundaries, works past, present, and all the church has to teach civilization would not be here, not be civilization with hospitals, schools etc…  Has the church gone a bit wonky with Social Justice? Yes it has, and it has too much Alysnky influence in it, as does the Lutheran church and other denominations Christian and non-Christian.  However, at the end of the day, if I want a truly comprehensive guide to how to relate to all things, including science, then the Catholic Church is were I want to be for that.  The people are not perfect, hell I am not perfect, we are all sinners to some degree throughout the day, the week etc..Yet, I can go into any Catholic church quietly pray, light a candle, chat with my saints, the Trinity and confess any vanities, ill temperament etc.., lift a weight off my shoulders. I have role models that tell me you can turn yourself and your life around, you can be one person and still make a difference in this world.  It brings together beauty, emotion, reason, so much more together into one.

This is why I came home and because I realize Italian means Catholic, it is part of the Italian identity.

Amen

Going to Plan B?

soaring eagle

I care for much for my faith, for the core truths of the faith and the magisterium, boundaries taught in sacred scripture, and also for the parish I now call home, for the traditions of my heritage.  I would hate to see that lost, so what do I do?

I understand clearly that as much as one would like to be fluffy and romantic about one’s parish, one’s church, one also has to be practical, and for a parish, a church is like any other business and requires funds to pay the bills.  The faith in order to survive must at some point return to its’ roots, so much nations or they will cease to be America, Italy, Germany etc.. if they do not do so and firmly, not in a negative way, but do so.  I understand that and so I have discerned that a series of regular fundraisers will be required and where my heart rests is with the arts, with music, so when an offer was made to me by a wonderful choral group to perform for us, to fundraise for us I could not say no on behalf of the parish and knew we would require 30 days to organize, set up ticket sales etc…  I knew for any event to succeed we would require solid planning, PR and Marketing, not just in our own little world and neighborhood but beyond those four walls.  However, when others are not getting it, and are not getting what will put the organization “on the map”, back to its’ roots big time etc.. I have to scratch my head and think what I can do to help that entity to thrive on my own time.  It is frustrating, but I may not have a choice. What can I do?  Being on SSDI, I am limited in my personal resources, but that does not mean I can’t do artistic events on my own time and donate part of those proceeds to the church.  Frankly, not sure what else to do.

What will I work on putting together? I am going to work on giving Catholic artists a chance to work with me to put on a show  monthly, a lunchtime show An Afternoon of Song, Poetry and Prayer, with light lunch included. The music and prayer will be in English, Italian and Latin.  There will be plenty of PR, preparation, with heaven’s help lots of efficient planning, so it brings glory to the Holy Trinity and much needed funds to my parish, but also brings people back to traditional Catholic and Italian roots.

Amen

Context Is Everything

aspen trees

When youth is taught that science and Catholicism are not compatible because the faith rejects science they are out of context in that view because well it is out of context.  How is that out of context? Let’s see.

First of all, the Bible is not meant to be a book about science, though it does not contradict science really http://www.clarifyingchristianity.com/science.shtml The Catholic Church has had priests in the scientific realm, in the medical field of research, so it is not adverse to science at all. It understands that the Bible is not meant to be a book to explain the how of life, but more of the why, and what, in terms of why we were created and what is our purpose here. What are the moral and ethical boundaries? Why do they exist? Why should they exist? Why should science have boundaries? How are those to be determined? This is the purpose of the Bible. Yes there was a first group of humans that got the whole of humanity started, and yes we can see from a baby, from little children that humans must have in the beginning been good, but something went wrong and we can see from the beauty of nature itself that in the beginning nature was a thing of pure beauty, so what went so terribly wrong?  We can see very clearly that nature intended for it to be man and woman only in marriage, as only that can produce life, so what went wrong with sexuality? Something happened that screwed humanity over? that is what God explained through the Holy Spirit speaking to the heart, spirit and soul of the writers of scripture and how there would be redemption from that.    When the Bible says that God knows us from the womb, from before we were born, yes, because we are atoms, molecules etc.., all of which are part of the universe, of what the universe is made of and God made all of that, so yes God knows us infinitely well.  There is no contradiction between the Bible and science. None.  Maybe the Church has lost the ability to explain, to connect, but it is there and I hope they find it, the way to explain it, make it clear.  May all come home to the Church, the Church built upon Peter the Rock, the Vicar of the bigger Rock, Christ.  May people understand that the Bible must be taken in Context of what it is a scripture of faith and spiritual truth, with seeds of science, history and more.

Amen

Stirred to Clarify, So Here Goes!

Most PRecious Blood

Often Protestants will get all in a huff about the Catholic Bible having seven more books and sacraments such as Confession, the Pope, Magisterium, all that stuff, saying it’s not in the Bible, the devils work, all made made stuff that Catholics follow.

I could try and get into all of it in one shot, but I wont, right now the thing I am being stirred to clarify is the Magisterium and Sacraments, as well as annulment.  I was not quite ready to accept what was stirred in my soul readily, but when the Spirit stirs it, it stirs it.  Here goes.  The Priesthood is something that goes back to Adam, to the beginning of time, when man was given dominion of the earth and all things on the earth, the role of overseer, in essence high priest over the creation of God.  Then it became a more formal structured priesthood with Arron and others.  Then with Peter receiving the revelation, Jesus gave the keys to Peter, built the church upon him, him who alone received that revelation first, he was asked to feed the sheep three times.  To the apostles was given the power to bind and loosen, to forgive or not forgive sins, to determine in essence the heart and soul of the sinner to see if he was truly repentant and therefore could be forgiven, including if he had forgiven himself so he would be ready to receive forgiveness from God.  It would be up to the apostles, later as the church became more structured to determine what was loosed and bound as regards sins, as regards the matters of the church, church law all that. Communion is what was commanded by Christ to remember him and his sacrifice, as we naw on his flesh, his words, not mine.  If it’s just a symbol, then how can you naw and chew on his flesh? Only if it become his body and his blood when prayed over can that happen.  Anointing of the sick, in there in Mark, Luke, James, Acts,  so not contrary to scripture, nor is Last Rites.  Same with an annulment, up to the church to determine if the marriage was entered into under false pretense, under less than honorable circumstances, which would render it invalid as a holy union and sacrament, thus could be loosened, even if not legally from a spiritual perspective.  Again Jesus gave that authority to the Priests, by giving it to the disciples to bind and to loosen.  As for the seven extra books, the Protestant Bible, all Bibles had those books up until the 1300 hundreds, when the idea of Sola Scriptura came into the notion of some, and is not found in the bible.  Nowhere does it say by faith alone, nowhere.

Now that I am truly studying my faith, going to church, connecting the dots, I am realizing what the Catholic church does is quite Biblical, just have to know how to connect the dots.  It can be quite tricky to do so, but once you connect the dots, you realize, it is quite biblical.

Amen