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Townes Van Zandt Because I Feel Like It March 1, 2018

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, family, General Catholic, non squitur.
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It’s just a Townes kind of day.  Eminently charming, humorous, and hugely talented, a Texan in just about every sense, like many artists, he fell into hard living and died as a pretty miserable alcoholic.  In his later years he was just a shadow of his former self, but for a while in the early 70s he was as good as they came. Interestingly, he released an album in 1973 entitled The Late Great Townes Van Zandt, and it was right after that that he fell into wholesale active addiction.

This first one speaks eloquently of my mood today, not so much the hook, but the body of the lyrics:

This one is better known, and just kind of gives a sense of who Townes was at his height:

So I Had to Break My Mom’s Heart Today…….. March 1, 2018

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, Bible, Domestic Church, family, General Catholic, Holy suffering, Interior Life, martyrdom, mortification, sadness, Tradition.
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…….and hurt my dad, as well.  I probably also permanently terminated any chance of having a relationship with my sister, which relation has already been horribly strained due largely to my traditional Catholic Faith (and other matters) over the past 7-8 years.

My family, and my wife’s family, are polar opposites. My wife’s family is Catholic, mine is protestant.  My wife has 60 nieces and nephews, I have one niece.  That niece is to be married in April to a fallen away Catholic from Mexico.  They are being married outside the Church. I did not ask, but I was told he was fallen away.  Well from then on we simply could not attend the wedding, and I dreaded having to break the news, because family is probably the most important thing in this world to my mom especially, and this would break her heart.  But I spoke with every priest at the parish and they were unanimous – no, I cannot attend a religious wedding/simulation of the Sacrament of Matrimony involving a Catholic.

There is a dim hope he was not actually baptized, but it’s exceedingly unlikely.

So we cannot attend.  And my family does not understand.  I barely understand, but I know I just can’t do it. And because family means so much to my mom, and because, aside from my wife and I’s  7 kids, the family is so small, everything tends to get magnified to the Nth degree. But the issue from a doctrinal standpoint is totally clear – I cannot support a Catholic in committing an act of grave sin against the Faith.  I certainly could not confuse and scandalize my children by involving them, and their presence is practically the whole point to my mom.

So I really hurt my parent’s feelings, which I absolutely did not want to do, and they cannot comprehend why.  That’s the reason I’m sharing this here, because they’re right, 99.5% of Catholics in the US today would go ahead and go to the outdoor “wedding” ceremony.  Who am I to say I am so right?  How can I hold myself up as such a prideful elitist looking down on other Catholics and all other Christians? Heck Francis himself would probably castigate me as a vicious sinner for failing to go, calling me to make human hearts happy as the highest end.  And yet the Truth remains………

Do not think that I came to send peace upon earth: I came not to send peace, but the sword. For I came to set a man at strife against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

And a man’s enemies shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me, is not worthy of me; and he that loveth son or daughter more than me, is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not up his cross, and followeth me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life, shall lose it: and he that shall lose his life for me, shall find it.

So do not let it be said that my faith in Jesus Christ, flawed and as imperfect as it is, has not cost me anything.  It has cost me dear, and cost others as well, people whom I love who do not share this faith of mine and who I have to hurt because of my faith. But this is one of the moments that, to me, defines whether one really believes or not.  Am I willing to stand with Christ, to choose Christ over even mother or father or sister or niece, all of whom are so very dear to me?  I pray I am.  I can tell you, there were several times during the unfortunate scene today when I wanted to cave in, and one time very nearly did. But in the end, I could not.

I am very sorry for that, in fact it’s been a brutal experience, but I can do no other than what I feel in conscience I must.  I write this here, because I felt that if anyone would understand, you would.

May God have mercy on us all for our human failings.  And may He in His infinite benevolence bring about a miracle of conversion for all my family so that we may all be united fully in Faith and charity.