The other thing is I’ve been working a lot. I’ve signed on to write a study guide on St. Thérèse of Lisieux so am once again knee-deep in The Little Flower, the Little Way, the Holocaust-Victim-of-Love concept, and so much more that dovetails nicely with the forty days in the desert into which we’re collectively heading.
“Significant too is a second thing common among those who attend daily mass, they do not want a service that is too long or too creative. They want a creal ritual, a predictable one, and a short one. “
She never, to my knowledge, submitted another piece. She continued to be faithful to her marriage vows, her private vows to God, to her children, her church, and to her conscience: crystal clear as I imagine it. Long-suffering but dry-eyed, keeping her own counsel, along with God alone knows what secret sorrows and silent suffering.
“Ora et labora,” as the monks say: prayer and work. Thus, I do my own housework, happily (not that I’m great at it). I shouldn’t own more stuff or inhabit more space than I can comfortably keep clean and cared for. And for me, the filling of the birdfeeders, the replacing of the batteries in the string lights, the polishing, scrubbing, wiping down, re-arranging, neatening, are all part of some larger, beautiful purpose, of a gift that’s been given to me.
Here’s the obit for one Renay Mandel Corren who died December 15. It begins: “A plus-sized Jewish lady redneck died in El Paso on Saturday.” I hope I get such a full-bodied tribute when I keel over.
“I think that the Church is the only thing that is going to make this horrible world we are coming to endurable; the only thing that makes the Church endurable is that somehow she is the body of Christ and that on this we are fed.”