No Human is Perfect: Part I

I have been asked many time ‘why are you catholic?’ and everytime I come up with a different answer. There are may reasons why I am catholic but the really basic reason why I am catholic is because I want to join God in Heaven. My ultimate goal in life is to become a saint. But I didn’t always think that way.

I grew up in a catholic family but faith didn’t mean anything to me. I went to mass because I was forced to go. I served mass because I liked being the center of attention. I received my first communion when I was in grade 2 and received the sacrament of confirmation when I was in grade 6. I did all these because it was tradition in my family and with school.

I was lucky in high school because I attended a public school but it was very catholic. When I was in grade 12 we would still have morning prayer. So I did get some spiritual nourishment even if I didn’t like it or even wanted. From the outside I looked like this good catholic girl but in the inside I was really struggling because faith made no sense to me.

After high school I moved away to go to university and this is where my life drastically changed. I never stopped going to mass but I still went for the wrong reasons. I went to mass just to please my friends and family.

I guess I should mention that when I was in university I started hanging out with the wrong crowd, I started drinking and going to parties… I even ended up bald…it’s a long story… But I do have to say that I liked being bald.

Not long after I was sitting in a boring class (I hope my prof isn’t reading this :/) and mid class I just had this feeling that I had to go to the Cathedral so I did. The Cathedral is right beside the University so it was just a hop and a skip away.

When I opened the doors to the Cathedral I had this weird feeling which I can’t explain but I just felt like I was supposed to be there. Daily mass was about to start so I did as my parents had taught me. I knelt down and started to pray like I was taught. That was my first honest prayer.

That night I was really confused, I really liked how I felt during mass but I didn’t understand why.

Later that week I went to a house warming party and met a lot of new people. There was something different about these people. They had real joy, something that I had not had since I was really young. I wanted what they had. That night this guy invited my brother and I to a prayer group. I was reluctant to go because I wouldn’t know anyone there. But he went so I followed.

It’s awesome how one single invitation goes a long way. We didn’t know the guy that invited us but we went to the prayer group and it has changed both my brother’s and my life. The guy inviting us probably didn’t know that we were looking for spiritual nourishment and probably invited us just to be nice and make conversation.

I don’t want to make this entry too long so I will keep writing about my conversion in another post…sometime soon… if I feel like it and if you want to know the rest.

On a side note, I went to mass this morning and I really can’t stop smiling. I was in a state where I could receive the Eucharist. Oh the joys that come with mass 🙂 🙂 🙂

We are all sinners and will always be sinners

I have this deep love for mass because I get to receive the Eucharist. This is the best gift anyone can receive daily because it nourishes us in multiple ways. But sadly these past few days I was in a state of mortal sin. This is something that really just drags me down and beats me to the ground. I couldn’t receive the Eucharist on Sunday mass because I was too prideful to even go see a priest and confess my failures. Often my pride gets in the way of things and prevents me in being who I really want to be. Today I went to daily mass and again I was still in a state of mortal sin so I couldn’t receive Communion.

But right after mass I asked my priest if I could have confession and with a big smile he said yes. I always have a fear of asking for confession but know that I will feel much better afterward. So even though I couldn’t receive the Eucharist today I am one step closer to receiving my spiritual nourishment.

I strongly encourage everyone to go to confession because let’s admit it, our soul needs some cleaning. We humans can’t clean it on our own, we need God’s help and forgiveness. The more I participate in this sacrament the more I feel comfortable in my own skin. Admiting my faults isn’t easy but it has to be done. It’s by admitting my faults that I discover who I really am. But let’s not get carried away here, my faults don’t define who I am they just prevent me from being who I am. We often hide behind our sin and blame it one someone or something else.  It’s easy to blame others for our faults but is it worth it?

I am guilty just like everyone else of committing that same sin over and over and confessing it over and over. We all have our different addictions that we have to deal with. But, we can’t deal with it alone. Sharing our addictions with someone else gives courage that there is much more than the addiction, gives the understanding that we are not alone and it gives accountability, someone we can talk to in times of temptation.

We are all broken and we all need help but God is there to provide that help. We just have to accept it.

I am praying for your brokeness, please pray for mine.

My Catholic Living

Discovering my vocation

As I’m writing this I only have 20 days left in Haiti. This journey has been going by too fast. I don’t want to leave but yet I’m really excited to take a new step in life. Like I said before, I got here in October 2014 and I’m here until July 1st (that’s right I’m coming back for Canada day :P)

I came to Haiti to be away from my family to discern religious life. Before coming here I thought I was called to religious life. Last year I lived in a community of young adults and absolutely loved it. Now I’m living with les Soeurs de Sainte-Croix (Sisters of Holy Cross) which are pretty cool and awesome. They have helped me grow deeper in my faith, encouraged me to pray more often and have a personal relationship with God. But through all these things I know that I’m not called to religious life. I’ve been getting many signs from God but the biggest one was the following.

One day, I was praying alone in a church, it was quiet, peaceful and beautiful. The sun was shinning perfectly on the tabernacle. I could feel God’s presence. I was praying about my vocation and all of a sudden this little girl came running in the church, came right up to me, called me ‘manman’ (which is mom in Creole) and gave me this big hug. This was a special moment for me because it felt like I was seeing my own daughter running up to me and calling me mom. All I could do was look back at the tabernacle with tears flowing from my eyes and thank the Lord for everything that He has done, is doing and will do for me.

I’ve always dreamed of having children but I never knew how sincere I was in this dream. Though I’m really excited to have kids, many kids, I still have to practice patience and find a husband (that’s the hard part).

I’m still learning to trust God with my life. Sometimes, even often it’s tough to trust that He has a plan for me. But I know that He won’t give up on me even though I give up on Him. This is why prayer is important. How can God know what I want if I don’t talk to Him. Prayer is having a conversation with our Lord. If I talk, talk, talk and talk some more I won’t be listening to what He has to tell me. But if I only listen He won’t know my true desires of the heart.

This is what has been on my heart in the last few days. I hope it makes sense. Also, please keep the kids at the orphanage in your prayers as the go ‘home’ (to either their father’s place, a relative or just someone they know) for the summer. At first I didn’t like the idea of the kids leaving the orphanage for the summer because I thought they had no where to go but most of these kids have a father but no mother. It’s a good reality check for them because when they will leave the orphanage for good they will have already experienced real life.

These kids are in my prayers and I hope you keep them in yours.

-My Catholic Living

Time

Time is something that we can’t explain. It happens whether or not we want it.

Sometimes is goes by really fast. Like when we’re hanging out with friends. But sometimes it goes by really slow like when we’re studying for an exam.

Sometimes we waste our time on the Internet other times we make good use of our time when we have a  good conversation with our mothers.

What I realised, is most of the time when we are in the presence of someone else time flies by. But when alone with nothing to do time drags out. A minute can feel like eternity

Earlier this year I was supposed to help out in a school but the people in charge never gave me stuff to do. Time was going really slow. I was often locked up in my room waiting for something to happen. I was wishing time would go by faster. Now I’m working in an orphanage, always busy with the kids, always something to do. I’m wishing I would have more time with them. I have 45 days left with that kids. 45 days is still quite a bit of days but in my head it’s like my trip is over.

God is timeless, He has neither a beginning nor and ending. He was always there and will always be there. He knows our past, He knows what the future has in store for us. But we  often forget to give a portion of our time to God. How many times has He showered us with graces that we just called ‘luck’. How many times we’re we joyful but thought it was just a result of something we did.

We are selfish with our time. We don’t like to give time to other but imagine if everyone gave an hour of their time to someone else everyday. The world would be a much nicer place.

Give time and receive time.

United in prayer

Giving all that they have

I met two brothers last week and they were really nice. One is in grade 5 and the other in grade 6. They are teaching me créole and I’m teaching them french. They told me a bit about their background. Their father was in a car accident when they were really young and he’s now mentally ill but he can’t seek any help because it’s too expensive. Their mother is too poor to take care of them so they live with their aunt who is also poor. Yesterday they couldn’t go to school because they weren’t able to pay. God thankfully provided and today they were able to go. It’s important that they go to school especially this week because the students are in exams.These kids are extremely intelligent and do very well in school. I really hope that they can eventually graduate and move on the university, find a job and get out of that misery.

Because other students know that their father is mentally ill they don’t let them play soccer with them saying ‘they don’t know how to play because their father is crazy’. It hurts them a lot when people say that and you can see the pain in their eyes.

It took me a while to realize that these kids actually have nothing but they are the happiest people I know. They always have a smile and are ready to help anyone. Today they took time out of their day to get coconuts for the sisters. They even prepared them for us.
I find that it’s more often the people who have nothing that give the most. I’m really touched by these boys. May God continue to bless them.

This is a good reminder for me that I should be more selfless and think of others needs before myself.

Fort Sans Souci
This is a picture that one of the brothers took. It’s a place where we often hang out.

Please pray for these boys.

o Death where is your sting? o death where is your victory?

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

I really like that picture. I took it a year or two ago just before I went into a spiritual direction session. I found the sunset very inspiring.

This is what I think when I see it: Psalms 23:4
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

We live in a simple world but we complicate everything. We are afraid of death but yet isn’t death the only way we get to meet God?

Yesterday I lost my great aunt, my grandpa’s sister. I didn’t know her very well but it still leaves a whole in my heart. I should be happy and rejoicing knowing she lived a good life and that she has the opportunity of meeting our lovely God. But instead I’m feeling down. Someone I love had left this earth and I can’t talk to her anymore, I can’t see her, she’s gone.  It makes it really hard on me that I can’t see my family in these hard times.

Though one thing that has helped me cope with this pain is prayer. The sisters I’m currently living with asked me to lead night prayer for the first time. At first I said no because I have always felt awkward praying out loud. But then one of the sisters asked me again to lead it and I finally accepted (even though I still didn’t want to). I was really scared at first but once I started it was smooth sailing, I forgot that the others were there and it’s like it was just me and God. I brought him my fears and pains of death and He responded very well. This was also the time I let the sisters know the pain I coping with. And after night prayer was over they didn’t ask any questions about my great aunt but they said they would pray for me family.

I don’t think I could of handled talking about her without shedding tears. I am a very sensitive person and even just writing this I shed a few tears.

Even in dark times God is there regardless if we see Him or not. Just like the sun even though we can’t see it at night it’s there.

-My Catholic Living

God is Love

Hello everybody!

I’m a young catholic and I’m here to tell the world what’s going on in my brain. As Catholic we are told to believe certain things but are explained why. My goal for this blog is to find out the truths behind Catholicism.

For my first blog I figured I would explore the theme of ‘God is Love’. We so often hear this but what does it really mean? All my life I’ve been told, God is Love so love God and I used to even give talks about this but I would say the typical things like: we are made in His image, we are a thought of God, blah blah blah… But if you don’t understand the word Love you can’t understand the statement God is Love.

Love is word that our society is misinterpreting. Often people associate love with infatuation. I am guilty of associating both of them too. But lately I’ve been thinking a lot about love, true love. What is love? Is it just an emotion? Is it a feeling? Is it something that is given? Can it be taken away? My simple answer is love is a gift from God. But then again going back on the first statement God is Love  it’s like saying God is a gift from God. Which is true! But what does that mean? Lets take a look at Jesus’ life. In His Passion and Resurrection. When Jesus was on the cross He could of said ‘Hey Dad I don’t want to do this’ but no He stayed there so that He could give us the opportunity to be saved from the fires of Hell. Heaven isn’t something guaranteed we still have to work to get there but at least now it’s an option.

You know what made Jesus stay on the cross? I’m sure Jesus didn’t want to stay there since He even said ‘Father why have You forsaken Me?’ Jesus felt betrayed by His Father but He knew He had to go through this pain and suffering for us humans. It was Jesus’ Love for us that held him there. Imagine if you were the only person on earth, Jesus would of still suffered the same excruciating pain to save you. Something that helped me understand was this: When Jesus was on the cross, suffering, He thought of you, He knew you and He died for you. Think about this: Every time we attend mass it’s like we’re living the Passion right? Well it’s exactly like we were at Calvary when He was being crucified. Just a crazy thought that I had.

So all in all, God is Love because He freely gave Himself up for us. Which in my opinion is True Love.

-mycatholicliving