Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Catch-up time.

Wednesday: Can you think of a time when you saw someone who needed help and you didn't help them? How do you feel about that?

There was an old, impaired guy they hired to work at the bookstore- he always had balance issues, and really wasn't that useful. They had him as a janitor to back Gary up, who was fairly old himself. One day I was walking around outside, and he fell over against the bench- I didn't see until he had already fallen, and two or three other people were helping him up. Looking back now, I wish I'd at least stayed to make sure he was okay- I don't think I was in a terribly big hurry, wherever I was going.

Thursday: How will you decorate your Least Coin container?

I didn't know this was going on- I have a little box of pennies from when I used to buy things in cash, I suppose I can donate that. I'll have to check with St. Thomas to see if they do something like that.

Friday: Do you think kids should give money in the collection at church?

Yes, I do- pennies add up, and dollars- if they put a dollar every week, that's nearly $50 per kid. It also sets the habit for them to continue donating as they get older.

Five about Reconciliation

Monday: Can you remember a time when part of you wanted to do the right thing and another part of you just wouldn't give in? How did that feel?

Depressing- I knew what should have been done, but couldn't bring myself to do it.

Tuesday: Can you remember a time when you knew what you should do, but you did the wrong thing anyway? How did that feel?

Yes- it felt terrible. And the aftermath is still plaguing me.

Wednesday: God gives us a choice between good and evil and God wants us to choose. What are you going to choose today?

Good- and I've been choosing it more and more often. That's not to say that I don't still choose bad occasionally- but progress is brick by brick, and I'm improving.

Thursday: Why is not feeling bad when we do bad things dangerous for our soul?

Because it implies a certain level of moral erosion. If we are able to do things without it feeling wrong, then we no longer have God whispering the right choices in our ear. It also means we will be capable of much greater wrongs without feeling bad about them. It means we have gotten distant from God, as well.

Friday: What do you like about going to confession?

I haven't gone yet, but I really look forward to it.

Five About Holiness

Monday: What do you think it would be like to be a saint?

I think it would be wonderful- both before and after the physical death. To be a close, personal friend of Jesus. And after death, to be able to petition to God for intercessory miracles in your name- I do have a bit of a fame complex, and want to be well-known and well-regarded.

Tuesday: Do you think you can choose to do the right thing even if other kids tease you?

It'll be difficult- a large amount of my mental state revolves around other peoples' opinions of me. Hell, I haven't even told Todd or Melanie that I'm converting because I'm afraid of their reactions, and their actions in response to it. Hopefully, once I'm a little stronger in faith myself, I'll be able to stand up for the views that I've recently come into- but for the moment, I need to explore them myself.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Tuesday- almsgiving

it specifically references Matthew, chapter 25, regarding how Jesus said we can get into heaven.

"Ask yourself, 'Do I really believe this?'"

Yes. But I only believe it because it is what Jesus said- I'm still at the stage in my faith journey where I must take everything in faith, and I don't yet know it fully. I have not yet fully internalized things; I don't feel them to my core. However, I feel them, and I can know them- the rest will simply come in time.

Leah said that RCIA, once the actual classes start, will be a bit more structured. That's good- the ladies in inquiry mean well, but the questions they tend to field, I've already asked after and gotten my answers. And when I bring up a serious question, such as baptism in the extraordinary form, they have no good answer. Probably something that I'd be better off asking both one of the priests, and the RCIA instructor about directly. Fr. Patrick just seems more approachable, out of all the ones I've seen say Mass. He's the one who is most energetic in his sermons; he also seems a little more down-to-earth, while still being respectful and... sacred, for lack of a better term, when he says the Mass.

Monday, March 16, 2009

There wasn't a question on Sunday.

Five about Almsgiving

"Is it hard for you to share what you have? Why?"

I have a problem giving money to the homeless; the vast majority of the time, they're comfortable where they are, and my money will go no further than the convenience store. There's a fair number of them who are actually well-off, and beg for change because a) it's fairly profitable, and b) it's not taxable. I don't know of any other way to give to the poor- I could probably volunteer at a soup kitchen, but Leah says there really aren't any in Tempe. I generally wear my clothes out to the point where they wouldn't be any good to a thrift store. I suppose when I buy at a thrift store, I'm technically helping the poor- but I'm also helping myself, at the same time, by getting something I want or need. Though it helps them, it's still not quite charity.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

From Deanna at work

im actually really happy to hear that you realize that you deserve to be treated better that you shouldn't have to face the brunt of a catagory 5 tropical storm. I always thought that you could find whatever girl you wanted, and since it was obvious to me that you were a very compassionate person I figured that you would eventually find a really cool, open minded, likeminded girl who understands you accepts you and lets you be you. In time you will find a girl who not only makes your heart soar, but also totally unconditionally, and nonjudgementally loves you for exactly who you are, and lets you be who you are. Keep striving for that you will find it

She's kind of a hippy, but that's not to say she doesn't have valid points. I may deserve to be treated better, but I need to treat myself better first- when I do, my self esteem will be at a place where I recognize and avoid that kind of treatment before I have to try and deal with it. I am rather compassionate, I would say to a fault, as it prompts me to stay much longer than I should in painful situations- or make me stick my hand into the dog cage again, only to have it bitten once more. All things in moderation, though- there's a point where it becomes harmful, where the other party resents the offer of assistance, no matter how sincere the motives for it. As to finding a cool, open minded, like-minded girl- there's a limit on how open-minded I would be interested in, especially with my current conversion progress. Like-minded is very important, but I think will come naturally- there will be too much friction between me and someone who is dissimilar enough to be noticed. And if I find someone too similar, I'd drive myself too crazy being driven crazy. As for the rest... I'd have to know who I am before someone could love me for it. The wind no longer calls to me- I need to remember my name.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Five About Prayer

"Why do you think it's important to make an appointment to talk to God every day?

There's no short answer to this one- there's a lot of reasons. A major one is to make sure that everything we do, is done for Him. It suggests prayer before bed, in which you can contemplate your day, see how what you did was for Him, and if it wasn't then it gives you a chance to make that right. You can right then apologize for it and be forgiven.

If you no longer pray daily, then God is no longer foremost in your thoughts, and you are more likely to offend him. It's the whole 'out of sight, out of mind' thing; I, at least, need reminders to keep me in the right frame of mind. Once you miss a day, it's easier to miss the next day, and slide away from it entirely.

It also helps deepen our relationship with God- I'm much closer friends with people I talk to every day, versus those I talk to weekly or monthly. It reminds me that He's there in my life, and I will more likely turn to him when I need him, as is only right and proper.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Riding to work today, I get almost to the last stretch- coming up on University and Priest, only another mile or so to get to work. I hear a weird metal crunch noise from my bike, and the whole thing starts making a grinding noise as it rapidly decelerates. I hop off, inspecting the chain and pedals- both still move freely, and everything seems fine. Figure maybe a gear just got stuck but is fine now, hop back on, same deal- look back, the back axle is at a funny angle to the bike frame. Well, I figure, this has happened before, the back axle broke. Hop off, start walking it the rest of the way- about 10 minutes until my shift starts, and it's about a 15 minute walk.

Waiting at a red light, I look closer, and realize that the frame itself that held the wheel snapped. The part that braced the wheel was still intact, on the right side, but is no longer attached to the rest of the frame- broke in 2 places. So I walked here, was like 7 minutes late, and sat down at my desk. I'm stuck on foot now, for a while, or taking the bus places.

Just the sort of thing that I don't need right now, with being $150 in the hole from overdrafts, and getting my hours cut to 24 a week. I won't even get my 'congrats on your raise' party as a consolation. :(

But things will get better, they always do. Or else we'll get zombies, and I'll get to be all heroic and smart and stuff.

So, onto the daily bit.

"Try this for just a minute or two. Just sit quietly and think about God. Breathe in slowly. Breathe out slowly. Can you do that for one minute? Just...sit."

I tried something like this on the way to work- when I was walking, imagined he was next to me, walking as well, and it lifted my spirits- I was still feeling pretty low. forgot how messy breakups can be, even if the friendship is maintained.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Slacking, need to work harder on this.

"Do you ever pray alone?"

Yes- almost exclusively. I have prayed the Rosary twice, with Leah, and we both happened to be praying at the same time on a couple occasions. But other than at Mass and RCIA, I always pray on my own. I make the distinction because we never pray alone; we have God there with us. So we are never truly alone at all, but most people don't realize that. However, it's aimed at kids, and probably doesn't expect them to take the difference into account.

"What is one good thing about knowing some prayers by heart?"

You have them quick at hand when you need them. At a moment's notice, you can chime in without having to reference anything. Also, if you're praying the Rosary, you can simply follow the beads, put the prayers on automatic, and spend your time meditating on the particular messages that it has to impart.

Leah brought up another point in her 'yay catholics' post about them being weapons of spiritual warfare; and in times of crisis, having the prayer memorized means you're much more familiar with it, as you would be any weapon, and that can make the difference between life and death.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Five About Prayer- monday

"What does it mean to be 'privileged' to pray the liturgy?"

It means several things. First, that the Catholic Church is the only one who has it, and we are lucky to belong to it instead of some other one. Second, it is a celebration of sacred mysteries instituted by God; we flawed mortals are allowed to witness, and even participate, in a miraculous happening. Hmm, I'd thought of some other one but forgot it :/ When I remember, if I do, I'll try and post about it- though nobody is reading this, and may never, I still like to put things down in words, if only to reinforce them to myself.


was absolutely amazing. Now I need to sit down and read the graphic novel, because holy cow, the movie was spectacular. Very well done, though quite violent and bloody- also very dark. Bits of nudity, and one very present- but not terribly graphic- sex scene. Also, Dr. Manhattan's little John swings around like a friggin monkey, it's nearly a character in its own right.

I would definitely recommend it unless you have issue with any of the points I raised. Be warned, it is a comic book adaptation.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Second Sunday of Lent


"If there is someone you find difficult to like, go to your desert place and ask God to open your eyes and see that person the way God sees him or her."

I suppose this'd be better as a blanket, for me- there's nobody I can think of that I especially can call out, but there's a lot of people that I could treat better if i understood them more. Including myself, I suppose.

Mass this morning was different- sort of bittersweet, because there was a quite obvious space next to me where someone should have been sitting. It got to the point of distracting me from who I was really there for- such will not happen again.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Five About Fasting

Apparently I didn't notice yesterday and forgot to do my regular entry. I'll do it today, instead.

"Today, can you remember not to eat meat and maybe one other favorite food so that you are poor for God?"

Well, I didn't eat meat. It was one of the days where we're provided food, and so I just didn't eat the chicken in that meal- passed it off to Gumby so it wasn't wasted. I think on Fridays I'm also going to fast and only have the one meal a day- honestly, the fasting rules aren't that difficult, and between my desire for holiness, and lack of funds, skipping all but the one meal on fridays will be good for me.

Next Lent I think that I'll fast every day, and not eat anything on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday at all. Along with the no meat on fridays. Hopefully by then I'll be at a job that doesn't quite compromise my soul like this one does. :/


Do you know those days you have, when you're just in a bad mood and nothing will get you out of it? I'm totally having one of those today.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

The last Five About Fasting

"Have you had that temptation yet? Can you laugh at it?"

Yes, I have, and yes, I can. Unfortunately, I don't do so often enough, and occasionally succumb. I find it works amazingly well; ridiculing that temptation makes me less likely to give in to it.

RCIA was interesting- we had a gentleman from the RCIA proper join us, and he was able to better answer the Scriptural Protestant (I feel terrible for not remembering her name) and her specific points addressed. Not that the ladies don't do a good job, but they don't always answer the question that is asked- it's as if they're expecting us to be asking a different question that they are ready to answer.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Character Bio

This is a character I've always wanted to play- I've never found anyone who had the time, inclination, or skill to run a game where I thought he could be done justice. I may as well write things out to get them cemented, and in the off chance I write a story/get a game to use him.

The True Evan Fardreamer

Born on Tatooine, of course. Brother Cole works for the New Republic eventually (in one of the actual novels- they don't give any history, though, so I'm inventing :D) but Evan was never interested in galactic politics. Fascination with the Jedi very early on; used chore money to send off for archive searches. Nearly caught once by anti-Jedi hunters, and learned discretion. Continued his searches, aided by HoloNet hackers and their ilk; told nobody what he was truly searching for.

Eventually got enough amassed to leave the planet and make his own way- took with him grandfather's paperweight, which turned out to be a dormant Holocron. Not nearly as impressive as most, as the art of Holocron creation has become lost, it simply gave directions to a distant outer rim planet. Upon arriving he found his grandfather's stronghold, with many tomes on Jedi lore and meditations; his Force sensitivity chose then to manifest, and he spent several years learning there.

He has since sought out other Jedi to learn directly from them, but such meetings are fraught with danger, so they are infrequent and remote. He has also honed his combat skills, against a variety of training aides, and occasionally other sparring partners. He has focused mostly on his subterfuge, remaining hidden from all but the most dedicated of searchers- and he has defended himself against a fair number of other practicioners, steeped in the Dark side of the Force.

Five About Fasting again

"Is there some behavior you, or maybe you and everyone in your class, could give up for the rest of today, or this week, or even all of Lent? What behavior would that be?"

Well, I'm not currently in classes, so that point isn't applicable. I think I'll give up wasteful spending- when I'm not that hungry, I won't buy a big meal. When I have other commitments for my semi-hard earned cash, I won't splurge and buy more Warhammer minis. This will be made easier on me by my hours getting cut at work- now I'll have less idle money to spend on things I really shouldn't be spending them on.

RCIA inquiry tonight- I'll be able to ask about the washing women's feet business that Leah wouldn't explain. I'm not always happy with the answers they give, which honestly will usually drive me to research them myself. To explain my comment- they will often answer the wrong question; when asked about the Ashes on Ash Wednesday they explained the use of the ashes, not the symbolism behind them, even when asked several times. (I have since found several lovely sites explaining such things.) Leah lamented about the state of knowledge the Church was currently in, where such things were no longer everyone's knowledge, and I can definitely see that being a problem, though I don't have enough experience to make such a claim.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


Lock is now 76. Time to try and remember why I'm leveling, so I can grind out these last four with a minimum of agony.

Exploring theme/ setting story elements.

I also happen to enjoy writing short stories, even if I don't tend to do so very often. Going to be lifting a lot of ideas from Max Brooks' amazing publication- though it isn't necessarily a definitive treatise, it's currently the best item out there to aid in surviving a zombie outbreak.

The background for my angle of the story is going to be sudden windfall- I win the lottery jackpot and find myself with plenty of money, so I do my best, in a short period of time, to get myself to a sustainable level of preparation. I include very few people in my preparations- only those people that I trust implicitly in a crunch, which is currently only two- one of them likely already has other plans in such an event, though, so I'll have to be discounting that for story purposes.

Preparations are made and underway when the 'unthinkable' happens and we experience a class 2 outbreak here in town. Our plans, mettle, and skills are tested as we flit from safehouse to safehouse- a total of 4 had been established, one of them a house i purchased, one of them here at work. Two other groups meet up with us for common defense, having had the same idea. Eventually zombie population goes down and we scout; meet other outposts/bastions, exchange limited dialogue.

Creativity and muse dried up, more in the future.

Five about fasting

So I picked up a guide to Lent for kids, when I was at Stations of the Cross with Leah last week. Fairly juvenile, but explains things simply and well. It suggests keeping a journal- I'm going to go ahead and do that. And, since nobody will be reading this until after Lent, I can post my Lenten resolutions (hopefully) without giving in to pride or vainglory.

"Is there anything you could give up- even just for the rest of today or this week?
And what will you do instead?"

I feel comfortable enough, with all the talk of not necessarily giving, but sacrifice, which can mean adding something for my Lenten devotion. I've added going to the Wednesday daily mass (which reminds me, I need to print a copy of the Litany of Mary so I have something to reference, as they will go through that after the Mass is ended) prior to my RCIA inquiry class. Since I'm not officially Catholic yet, I can't receive the Holy Eucharist, but I can still attend the Mass. I think that, since I'm at a difficult time, going twice weekly will aid me in growing closer to God, but going daily, as someone mentioned, isn't really feasible.

Going to start going to the 9 AM sunday masses- so it's all the more important that I get my permit, then license, then the car from my parents- because as it is, it'll take me nearly an hour and a half to take the light rail from my apartment, then catch the bus north the rest of the way. And considering that I won't be home until nearly midnight on saturday nights, it'll probably be about 6-7 hours of sleep. Well, I guess it doesn't sound that bad when I put it that way.

I'll go ahead and end it here- hopefully I'll be posting daily, or nearly so, for the rest of Lent, and the rest of the book.

My first entry.

I should warn anyone who's starting to read this blog- not that I expect people will- that it will cover a variety of topics, a lot of which people probably aren't interested in. A brief sampling will include World of Warcraft, Star Wars, my budding Catholicism, my sordid romantic life, good books I've read... things of that nature.

So yeah. I can post about almost anything, at any time. You have now been warned, and I hope you enjoy your reading.