Doctor Who

I am a huge Doctor Who fan. Let’s just say that there are many people who know me who would go so far as to say that I am a fanatic. I see you nodding your heads on the other side of this computer screen.

My fascination with the Doctor began while I was on maternity leave in 2008 (which has turned into my being a sahm) and I was flipping channels trying to find something worth watching in the middle of the day. And then I came across a Doctor Who marathon on the Sci-Fi Channel. The Doctor was being played by Eccleston and the episode was “The End of the World.”  I hope it’s not über sad that I can still remember that.

Since then I have watched all the new Who series, and have watched a lot of the classic series. My husband has been buying me the dvds of classic Who starting with Hartnell and working our way from episode 1 ’till the end of the original series. I’ve watched all the Hartnell ones that they have out on dvd and we are working our way through Troughton. Sadly, we haven’t been watching them as much as we had been. Life with two young children has slowed down our viewing time. On the upside, my daughter can identify when it’s the Doctor no matter who it is and my son is quickly learning! =)

We might have slowed down our viewing of our dvds, but I live in the best place in the world for Doctor Who. Our local PBS channel is the only station here in the States that still airs classic Who (and might be the only one in the world). It’s one of many reasons why I love living here in the Seattle area.

I have enjoyed watching episodes from all of the Doctor’s, even the silly TV movie that the 8th Doctor is in. Sure I have my favourites. And this Saturday, one of the best Doctor’s (at least in my humble opinion) will be returning to the small screen. So if anyone is trying to reach me this Saturday, I’m sorry. I have a date with the Doctor and his magnificent TARDIS.

Advertisements

Being True to Ourselves

We are in the final push before school starts here. Granted, Sasha is only entering Pre-K, but we are enjoying this last bit of summer and school shopping as well. *sigh* Until the time that all the crazy things around here calm down, new and original posts will remain light.

I did however find a very good commentary by Melinda Selmys from the National Catholic Register on how we as Christians are called to just be ourselves that I wanted to share.

True Christians Must be Themselves

God is not interested in a uniform humanity.

This is a very hard truth, because most of us can sympathize with Dmitri Karamazov’s complaint: “Man is too broad; I would narrow him.”

It’s hard to relate to people who are very different from ourselves. The problem is not merely that the heart is too constricted to look without judgment, but that there becomes a very deep fear that we will be judged.

This is the psychological wellspring of judgmentalism.

The heart goes out into the world, bearing its personality, talents, loves, and it finds itself criticized. The impetus to kick back in self-defense is very strong.

Consider, for example, how the highly intelligent child who is called names on the playground armors himself with a contemptuous disregard for the opinions of his name-callers. This disregard can develop over time into a hard shell of disdain no longer directed only at those who hurt him, but at the entire mass of humanity, who are seen as stupid and incapable of thought.

Many Catholics experience the same thing with regard to their faith. They go out bearing the gift of the Gospel and are stoned outside of the gates of the City of the World.

Suddenly ashamed of that which is truly good within their hearts, they often feel they have only two comfortable options — join in the laughter and sacrifice something beautiful within their souls or wrap up their goodness in a shell of contempt and look down their noses at the unrepentant sinners.

Judgmentalism, then, becomes a protection for virtue.

But this kind of protection suffocates the good that it is meant to protect. The intelligent man is nowhere more stupid than when he talks of the stupidity of others. The virtuous man is nowhere more evil than when he talks of others’ sin.

There is a third way: authenticity, the Way of Truth.

“For this I was born, and for this I have come into the world: to bear witness to the truth” (John 18:37).

Christ gave himself as a gift to the entire human race. He did not worry about public opinion, but did make himself into a gift that people would feel blessed to receive.

He was authentically himself, yet when people decided to crucify him, he did not cry: “Yokels! Infidels! Philistines! Sinners!” He said, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34).

This is the Christian calling. We must make ourselves into a sincere gift of self for the entire human race. It is tempting, however, to try to become a different kind of person to avoid risking one’s pearls in the swine pen.

Catholics may do this by adopting the superficial characteristics of a particular saint or holy stereotype. I recall a highly intelligent friend, a bookworm with a Shakespearean tongue, trying to become a holy simpleton via St. Francis. The experiment was self-evidently ridiculous, and he soon gave it up and went off to get a doctorate in theology; yet many others do the same thing in ways that slip more easily under the radar.

Think of the Catholic woman who surrenders her interests and talents to conform to a shallow stereotype of the good wife and mother. Or of Father Anonymous, who stifles his quirky personality to present a blandly pastoral persona to his parishioners.

These people are trying to be good and set a good example, but they are making themselves unhappy and their outreach sterile; few things are less appealing than a cookie-cutter saint.
If the Church wishes to breed true saints, then Christians must strive to receive the gifts of all with joy.

As God explained to St. Catherine of Siena, “I distribute the virtues quite diversely; I do not give all of them to each person. … I shall give principally charity to one; justice to another; humility to this one; a living faith to that one. … And so, I have given many gifts and graces, both spiritual and temporal, with such diversity that I have not given everything to one single person, so that you may be constrained to practice charity towards one another” (Catechism, 1937).

Those who have the virtue of orthodoxy, of wisdom or of obedience are called to make of this a gift.

It is not a license to look down on the confused and the dissenting. Nor is the gift of use to anyone if it is offered Jonah-like, as though to say, “I know you’re not interested, and you don’t have ears to hear. But at least I’ve done my bit. Let your blood be upon your head.”

Nor will the Church be of any use to the righteous man if he doesn’t recognize himself also to be poor in other virtues, to be a pauper who must receive from the hands of those who lack his own virtues or have the virtues which he himself lacks.

My Restless Mind

There are times that I find it difficult to concentrate because my brain is busy firing off a ton of different ideas all at once: things to write about, what books I want to read next, what chores I need to be doing, how and what I want to do to decorate my house, pretend conversations with people, crafts I want to do with the kids, what’s going to happen later that day/week/month, so on and so forth. At times (more often than not) I can get so overwhelmed by everything going on inside my head that I find it terribly difficult to get anything done. I feel pulled in so many directions by everything I want and/or should do, and disappointed when I don’t finish them.

There are a few things that help calm my mind but only one that I’ve found that seems to shut off a lot of the crazies going on in my mind. What is this one thing? Video games. Sadly, this really isn’t the best option for me because I can become so engrossed in the game that hours will pass by before I am aware of how much time has passed. I only allow myself to delve into any sort of game when my children are asleep at either nap time or bedtime; the problem comes in with me not getting off of them as quickly as I should. It’s become worse lately, and I know that I’m going to have to fix that.

One thing I’m going to try to see if it helps is to carry pen and paper with me wherever I go. My hope is that by doing this simple thing that not only will I be able to quell the restlessness of my mind but I’ll also start putting all my writing ideas down on paper. And who knows I might actually write that novel I’ve always wanted to write.

The Feast of the Assumption of Mary

The Assumption of the Virgin

Bartolome Esteban Murillo

Today the Church celebrates the Feast of the Assumption. For those who have no idea what this means let me explain. At the moment of her death she was assumed body and soul into Heaven by the power of God. This is not to be confused with Christ’s ascension into Heaven. Christ ascended into Heaven by His own power, Mary was assumed into Heaven by God.

How do we know that this occurred when it isn’t found in scripture. Firstly, not everything that Jesus taught his Apostles nor the teaching of the Apostles is written in the Bible. For the first several years of the Church everything was passed on orally. Many of these teachings are now called Sacred Tradition (I’ll get into the debates of sola scripture and sola fide at a later time). Secondly, no relics nor tomb have ever been claimed to be that of our Blessed Mother. All of the other Apostles, Saints, and so forth have had someone lay claim to finding relics or tombs. There are only two people who this has never been claimed for: 1. Jesus – because we know that he ascended to Heaven by his own power. (Acts 1:9-11) and 2. Mary. Lastly, there were other people whom God assumed into Heaven: Enoch (Gen 5:24), Elijah (2 Kings 2:11), and some say Moses was also assumed (no one knows where his grave is – Dt 34:6, the archangel Michael argues with the Devil about his body – Jude 1:9, and he appears alongside Elijah at the transfiguration (Mat 17:1-9, Mark 9:2-8, Luke 9:28-36)

There are several excellent posts on this topic around the interwebs. I feel as if I would just be rehashing them. Allow me to present the links to a few of their posts:

Two posts from Brent Stubbs over at AlmostNotCatholic.com:

  1. The Assumption in Church History
  2. The Assumption in the Bible

Mary’s Assumption Makes Sense in Light of Microchimerism  An interesting take on the assumption by Elizabeth Scalia:

The Assumption by Brianna Heldt

The Feast of the Assumption is Our Feast Too written in 2010 by Msgr. Charles Pope

I Just Returned from this year’s MOPs Convention

This past weekend I was in Dallas, TX attending the MOPs convention. I had an amazing time and had several God moments. Honestly it felt more like God took a cattle prod to me multiple times.

In my very first workshop, “Fear to Faith” the speaker kept saying, “…there are several books in this room that need to be written.” Any of you who know me know that I had a book idea about four years ago. What you don’t know is that I’ve had three others since then and a Bible study to write.

In one of our General Sessions we had a couple, the Gelinus’, who spoke about their family. During this talk I was hit with the cattle prod to continue discerning when the right time would be to begin getting my family’s life ready for the possibility of adopting a child. Those were just the first two instances that I was hit with those reminders. Throughout the weekend I continued to be poked and prodded on these two subjects.

While I was there, one of my dear friends was on my heart almost constantly. She is going through some very difficult moment in life right now and I just want to shower her with love. I’ll be doing that as soon as I get to see her. A part of me feels called to do something for her that will lead to something amazing in her life. Does that make any sense? I know I cannot fix anything, and yet I feel as if I need to do something amazing for her. Now to just sit back and see what God has in store for her and for me.

I did not attend this convention alone. Far from it. I went with nine other amazing, amazing women. We come from all walks of life and yet I feel so close to them right now that I feel as I could let them into the darkest parts of my soul and they would still love me. I thank them all for sharing parts of themselves that I know are hard to get out there. It is at those moments when we are at our most vulnerable and sharing something so raw that somehow bring us closer together. If any of you ladies are reading this please know that I love you.

It is going to take me a few days to decompress and get back into the swing of everyday life so updates may be sparse.