I sat down in the departure hub cafeteria with my sheet of homemade soup and salad. The counter was already occupied with a smattering of participants , nothing of whom I knew. One bride mentioned her enjoy of the Rule of St. Benedict, which influenced her decision to become an oblate. Another sway her principal and chuckled, “I’m proud to be a secular Franciscan.” Still another( now a personal friend) shared that she was in the formation process to become a lay Dominican.
I remained silent, sipping my soup and assimilating those discussions. Always the outsider, I chose to ponder their spiritual preferences. Someone ultimately turning now to me and requested, “What about you? Are you a Franciscan or Carmelite or what? ” I checked my garb to be certain I was not dressed as a religious, then, taken aback, I replied, “None of the above. I find beautiful phases about all of these different forms of spirituality.”
It surprised me that no one replied. It seems as though some Catholics focus on categorizing their sect, as if that is a necessary component for holiness or prerequisite for heaven. After the hideaway, and for various subsequent months, I felt a need to fit my own sect into a tidy package, if exclusively to fit in somewhere or to explain to others my particular lifestyle.
First, I considered the Franciscans. My mother had been a secular Franciscan when I was in high school, and I attended a local Franciscan university. My love of swine and the road God’s creation ever was talking about my soul passed me to believe I could begin formation in this particular spirituality.
Then I recollected my compassion of St. John of the Cross, St. Teresa of Avila, St. Therese of Lisieux, and St. Edith Stein. I understood the depth of their mysticism and to pay attention to a more pensive shape of prayer. So I wondered to a friend about the process of Carmelite formation.
A few of your best friend who became lay Dominicans tried to convince me that this was my true-life spiritual summon. I became more reassured as I predict the works of St. Thomas Aquinas and withdrew my strong devotion to St. Rose of Lima and St. Catherine of Siena.
The roadblocks were always the same: pattern in any specific spirituality was laborious and necessary an undue quantity of time. To some, this may appear an excuse, but I was in the thick of attending for three young daughters, including Sarah who has a rare disease.
In prayer, I felt lost. I wanted to find “the way” for me, the right path that would bring about the sense of belonging I so desperately needed. In time, God reminded me that He is The Way, and the different forms of prayer and love are similarly beautiful and pleasing to Him.
In our everyday Christian walk, we do not need illusion and complex pathways to encounter God. Some wish the rigours of formulaic prayers, such as novenas and rosaries and chaplets. Others are more endowed in spontaneous petition or devotional predict or writing. Still others are talented in music and praise God through song.
In the same way, some Catholics enjoy attending the Latin Mass, while others are naturally drawn to the norvus ordo form. Within the worship, some feel more connected to God through traditional carols and others find elation in contemporary admire and love music.
I think of three scripture verses to summarize my remembers on diversification in spiritual express of our sect 😛 TAGEND
Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you besides.( examine Matthew 6: 33) There are many characters but one organization.( picture 1 Corinthians 12: 14) There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free being, there is not male and female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.( realize Galatians 3: 28)
Each type of spirituality — Carmelite, Franciscan, Benedictine, Dominican, etc. — are beautiful in themselves, and some are truly called to a specific formation of the Faith. But for the rest of us, it’s more important to seek the movements of the Holy spirit than to thrust particular rubrics of prayer. Often, God invites us to adore and encounter Him in ways foreign to us, perhaps to keep us open to His causes and receptive to the moments He desires to reveal Himself to us.
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