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Hey, Jesus, I just wanted to share some stuff with you...

Well, I had a fantastic time at Walsingham with Youth 2000 last weekend. It was so amazing to spend so much time praising you and loving you! It's like every time I go to Youth 2000 I love you more and more and I find out how much I want to love you forever! Right now, I feel as though I want to be with you forever. I mean, I know you're with me all the time, but I want to spend more time with you through Your Blessed Sacrament form... if that makes any sense, I wasn't sure how to put that across, but you're Jesus, you get me. I loved spending time in Adoration and just coming to you with my problems and praising you by singing and stuff - it's so great! And all the talks are so inspiring! I was talking to Hannah and Tess today and we were saying how great it would be if you could start every day off by being transported to Youth 2000 for some silent adoration, followed by praise and worship and some praying and a talk and then we decided that Heaven's probably just like that. We'll get the same out of heaven as we do Youth 2000 retreats, only more. I'd love that, Jesus, to spend eternity praising you.

I feel like something has changed inside me since Walsingham. I feel like a different person because I love you so much more than I've ever done that before. The only thing is, I'm still not treating other people the way I should. It's so easy to be irritated and hurt and jealous when really I should love everyone. I mean, if I really loved you, I would see you in everyone else and love them for it. But I don't. I'm a huge sinner, Jesus, but I'm working on it. I'm happily doing morning and evening prayer, going to daily Mass, filling my days with religion so as not to forget you (like Fr Philip said at Y2k, everything that we do there we can do at home - that homily helped me so much!) and hopefully I'll be doing weekly confession ... have to find out where I can go for that at uni... and I'm praying the rosary a lot too. I should talk to you more. That's kind of why I'm doing this. Anyway, I'm trying to kind of envelope myself in religion, if that makes sense, and hopefully, gradually, I'll learn to be the way you want me to be. Help my patience Jesus, help me with my sinfulness...

When I was doing evening prayer yesterday, the scripture reading really stuck out to me:

"This is a cause of great joy for you, even though you may for a short time have to bear being plagued by all sorts of trials; so that, when Jesus Christ is revealed, your faith will have been tested and proved like gold - only it is more precious than gold, which is corruptible even though it bears testing by fire - and then you will have praise and glory and honour. You did not see him, yet you love him; and still without seeing him, you are already filled with a joy so glorious that it cannot be described, because you believe; and you are sure of the end which your faith looks forward, that is, the salvation of your souls." - 1 Peter 1:6-9

I pasted that off another website to save typing it since I'm a bit rushed here so I hope that's right. But it just really stood out to me that yes, I'm happy at the moment and, inevitably, I'm going to suffer - I'm particularly worried about going back to uni - but Jesus will be with me. He's there for me and it will all help my faith.

Anyway, I have to go now... talk later Jesus.

Helping young Catholics

I've probaby said already how I feel called to help the Catholic youth. Well, finally, I think I know how.

It came from a talk with my sister. She encouraged me to go for what I'm good at, which is making websites, and to believe in my dreams. So that's what I'm doing. My dream is to create a website for the catholic youth, maybe a kind of e-zine with lots of information about catholicism on it, like xt3 only more in depth. Once it's popular, I can get hosted and then even more people will come visit and I can hire staff to help maintain it, including someome to maintain an online shop on there that sells good catholic stuff. And there can be catholic avdertising too, so all of that would help me use the website as my regular income and pay other people and just keep getting the messgae out to the catholic youth.

First, though, I have to learn more about catholicism myself and also about making websites. I've got a pile of books and CTS pamphlets to read now on Catholicism and once I'm done at uni I'll do a course in web-design - not a proper degree or anything, just something for my own benefit so I can make the site better.

Until then, I have another idea. I'll make an LJ where catholics discuss their faith. There can be a question each week which the catholic youth can answer and then I'll archive it all on a forum and maybe have room to chat on the forum too.

It's early days yet and I'm still praying about it but it's very exciting!

Quiz proves I'm Catholic

I did a random quiz I found. Yay, it proves I'm Catholic! Reckon I'd be more Catholic if I knew what half the questions meant, but hey, what can you do!

You scored as Roman Catholic. You are Roman Catholic. Church tradition and ecclesial authority are hugely important, and the most important part of worship for you is mass. As the Mother of God, Mary is important in your theology, and as the communion of saints includes the living and the dead, you can also ask the saints to intercede for you.

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Roman Catholic

86%

Neo orthodox

57%

Evangelical Holiness/Wesleyan

57%

Classical Liberal

50%

Emergent/Postmodern

36%

Modern Liberal

36%

Fundamentalist

36%

Charismatic/Pentecostal

32%

Reformed Evangelical

21%

What's your theological worldview?
created with QuizFarm.com

Jesus... Help Me!

Well, I think I've come to some kind of conclusion about my vocation. I don't think I'm called to be a nun. I'm still open to it should God call me to it, but I really don't think that it's for me. I think I'd irritate the other nuns and they'd irritate me - I'm just not the sort of person who can cope being around the same people 24/7. Of course I could be apostolic, but even so, I just don't think it's for me. I still feel really called to help the catholic youth, though, to help them learn more about their faith. I think the Mary Beth Bonacci or whatever her name is book really helped there. It's called 'We're On A Mission From God' and it's just so in touch with the youth whilst still being informative about the catholic faith. It's great! I don't know exactly how I'll fulfill this vocation, I'll have to pray some more. All I know so far is that I want to set up that LJ community I mentioned in my last entry. Maybe I'll end up writing a book or creating a magazine or something. Who knows!

Speaking of writing, I always wanted to be a writer, to write a children's fantasy series, but now I'm not so sure. I don't feel the same passion for it that I used to. Now I feel more passion towards God than anything else and I just want my future to be dedicated to Him. He is a worthy person to dedicate your future too, after all...

Which a certain someone else obviously sees too. Just when I learn to speak to him, everyone suddenly decided to see fit to remind me that he's seriously considering the priesthood. It's really hard sometimes, and when Jenni said at brunch, "I know you like him, but he's going to make a fantastic priest", I was just like "Thanks", and we had a talk afterwards and she made me cry a bit. But it's okay now. I'm learning that, though I'm scared I'll never find anyone as great as this person again, God has a plan for everyone. He won't let me down. If me and this absolutely fantastic person are not meant to be, then God will have something else even greater in store for me. Besides, the Catholic Church is short of priests and if he wants to be a priest, that's really great. Young vocations are always particularly special and influencial. I'm starting to think it's a bit selfish of me to get upset.

Another issue altogether is the issues with Jenni and Adam. The thing is that the two of them are both my friends, and they both have issues which just can't be sorted, and one of them can't let go and keeps talking about the other and can get really controlling when it comes to Adam which really irritates me and Kay. I mean, I love Jenni to bits, she's a really great friend and the first time I've had a friend who's practising Catholic and interested in her faith, but she needs to get over Adam. I know it's easier said than done, but I've tried to help her but all she does it talk about him all the time to everyone, to the extent that Kay and I barely know anything about her that doesn't relate back to Adam some how. They weren't even properly together, it was one night (and that's not even like it sounds - as far as I know!). But it's really bugging me, to the extent where I'm considering choosing Adam over her. She says there's no need to choose, but that's the position she puts me and Kay in. The thing is, hanging over all of this is that I should be, as a Christian, setting a good example. I shouldn't bitch, I shouldn't complain, I should try to sort things out without hurting people but it's just so hard! I really, really can't deal with this! Oh please Jesus, help me!

Vocations, E-Zines and Men!

I've been thinking recently about my vocation. I mean, Hannah and Tess are both pretty certain they're going to be nuns, but I don't feel like God's told me what He wants me to do. I mean, I have all these plans about becoming a teacher, getting married, having a traditionally huge Catholic family and raising them all as Catholics - but I mean, how can I be sure that this is what God wants? It's what I want, but is it God's will? I want to do His will. I really, really do. I keep telling Him that but I'm so useless at listening to Him that I can't be sure what He wants! I'll have to keep praying, I know, but I'm so impatient!

Another thing is that I wanted to start up some kind of e-zine on livejournal or some other blog website because there's a gap in the market and everything - I've never really come across a Catholic magazine for young people - but I can't remember for the life of me all the ideas I had! It's so annoying! It was just gonna be a little something, you know, just to help young Catholics with their faith, and just little old me maintaining it but it's no use if I can't remember! How annoying!! Please God inspire me again!

You know, a few years ago, if someone had said I would find someone's faith attractive, I would have laughed in their face. But that's what's happened - I've found someone so perfect for me, the kind of man I've always dreamed of finding ... there's just one problem: I can't talk to him!! Oh God, please give me the courage to say something! Anything! What the heck is wrong with me?!

Long have I waited

Gosh, it's been so long since I've updated...

Anyway, in Mass for Ash Wednesday the other day, the Music Group sang that song that goes something like, "Long have I waited for your coming home to me, and living deeply our new life" or something like that. It's amazing how songs can have such a powerful effect! But this song just showed me how patiently God waited for me to find Him, to come home to Him and that now that he's finally got me, He's not about to let me go. What I mean by that is, I'm not on my own and God isn't going to throw me into a situation I can't handle that causes me to question my faith - not after He's waited for me for so long!

Oh Jesus, what a great Saviour you are!! It's so unbelievably fantastic to know that whatever happens, God is with me. It's like that footsteps poem - through the hard times there's only one set of prints because he carried me. He's such a great God!

I think I may have been annoying Julia though because I've been trying to convert her to Catholicism 'cause she's Christian Fellowship. I've tried to point out to her that there are absolutes, and that if you leave the Bible open to human interpretation, then there are bound to be faults with it because we're so sinful. It's like I heard of some Protestants who believe that they have a lot of money purely because they follow God and that those without money don't deserve it - God blessed them with money, therefore they won't share it. Nice! But that's why you need absolutes and tradition to guide you... it all comes from God, from Jesus. And besides, the Pope is infallible - you can't argue with that!

And while I finally have Catholic friends for the first time in my life (for once I'm in the majority now that I'm at a Catholic uni), they don't practise their faith as much as they should. And how far can you really go in persuading them to come to Mass and stuff? You want them to realise that God comes first, that, say, if you spare one hour in your day to go to Mass even if you have an exam the next day or a load of work to hand in, God will reward you for it. He's not going to say, "Ha ha! I made you choose me over your work and now you've failed and I've ruined your life!" No, he'll say, "Thank you for spending time with me. In fact, I'm so thankful that I think you really deserve to pass your test now." But how to make them see this without falling out with them? You want to remain friends, but you also want them to see God in all His glory. Gah! How hard life is!

Lord of the Dance

In mass today, we sang Lord of the Dance. I'm not sure if I've heard this version of it before and if I have, it's been a while. But it just really stood out to me - it's such a beautiful song! I love the idea of Jesus being the dance! I especially liked this verse:

I danced on a Friday when the sky turned black
It's hard to dance with the devil on your back
They buried my body & they thought I'd gone
But I am the Dance & I still go on!


I just love that verse! They thought Jesus was gone, but he isn't - he's always with us. Also, even with the devil tempting him, the dance went on! It just makes me love the my faith even more to think of it as a dance...!

How I found Jesus

I'm an eighteen-year-old A Level student in England and I've always been a Catholic. My parents are Catholics so, naturally, I was brought up to be one too. I always went to Church and I would tell people proudly that I was a Catholic, but I didn't really know - or care - much about my faith. Then a couple of years ago, I stopped going to mass. I told myself I'd go to the evening mass so I could have a lie in, but I never went - I'd always find an excuse not to go.

This carried on for quite a while, I only ever went to church at Easter and Christmas, though, however lapsed, I'd still proudly tell people I was a Catholic and argue for my faith, even if I wasn't acting like one in my daily activities.

During this period, the time came for me to do my Confirmation. I did it with my sister, too scared to do it on my own, and didn't really put much thought into it. I felt obligated to do it - not because people were making me - but because if I didn't do it, I'd feel guilty and I'd probably never get round to doing it another time, particularly since that would mean doing it on my own. I didn't take in what was said in the meetings, didn't choose a sponsor or a saint's name because it meant something to me spiritually, simply because I liked a certain name and it was easy to choose a certain person as my sponsor, since it was my older sister.

Nothing changed after my Confirmation. I carried on the way I was, not really thinking much about my faith.

I'd heard my sisters talking about Youth 2000 several times. They had both been and had both come back seriously considering a vocation to religious life. I think this is what scared me the most about Youth 2000 - I desperately didn't want to come back wanting to be a nun. My sister explained to me that God wouldn't give me that vocation unless it was right for me, but I wasn't convinced.

With Youth 2000 Walsingham coming up (the biggest Youth 2000 event in England), my sister, unbeknown to me, began to pray for me, fast for me - the whole works. I can't believe how much it took, but it got me there in the end!

I was really apprehensive about going to Walsingham, even after I'd agreed. Having said that, though, I did enjoy the praying that we did on the coach on the way - it really got me feeling like I was holy!

The atmosphere was so great, with all the young people and the funky Friars of the Renewal, the fantastic music (I come from a parish that barely sings!) - it was all great! I wasn't so into Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament at the time, I didn't know how to talk to God, but I really feel that it was through the Blessed Sacrament and everything else that went on at Youth 2000 that changed me forever. I learned what it was like to really worship God!

The Healing Ceremony was another thing there that really had a big impact on me. I was amazed at people's reactions - at how they were crying and how people just couldn't take their eyes off Jesus. I remember that then, and every Healing I've experienced since then, I felt God's prescence so much that I just wanted to break down in tears because I'm so unworthy of God and his love.

Ever since then, I've become a better person. Yes, I still sin and I'm not the best example of a Xian, but I am changed and I'm falling in love with Jesus more and more all the time.