Year of Faith

Oooh WOWOWOWOWOW there are so many reasons why I’m like this right now:

The Year of Faith starts today. Today we begin a year’s journey to carry us closer to Jesus.
Thanks, Pope! And Holy Spirit!

I plan on using this blog to present my personal journey. That’s been my plan from the beginning (a week ago!) of this blog.

Then today, at mass, the priest pointed out that today is the anniversary of the Second Vatican council. And that was pretty intense. I didn’t experience the huge change that was the Second Vatican Council. I have no recollection of masses in Latin, veils in church, priests facing the altar.

Another priest, another mass, another day told me once that “Faith is not for you. Faith is a gift for the community. The faith of fellow believers lifts you up, just as your faith lifts them.”
Frank warning: I feel like I’m going to reflect on that a lot this year.

Anyway: my mind is all like, “How does this blend together? Faith, which is so personal, is also somehow communal.” It’s blowing my mind right now.

I actually don’t really know how to process all of that just yet. So, as a peace offering, I present a series of lists. Enjoy.

List #1. “Things that made me squeal today (chronologically)”:

  • The quote, “Faith is a sheer gift of God, which we receive when we fervently ask for it.” (From here and my friends at the MI) Wait, wait. Read it again, pause, and ponder. I’ll post another entire post on this idea soon. Until then, today’s reading ties in (verses 5-13)
  • The United States Council of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) gave us a list of patron saints to ponder for the year. Guess who is on it?!? Oh, you know, just my HOME BOY ST. DAMIEN OF MOLOKAI whom I majorly dig, who inspires me daily, whom I hope to name a child after someday. Maybe not that last one, but it helps drive a point home. ANYWAY, how tight would it be to visit a church named after one of them every month?
  • Even though I should be better at life generally, I realize I’m not super informed on indulgences–I just view them as extra grace from God. Anyway, there’s a Plenary Indulgence this year. Also! We are give a list of things to do, and the last one is incredibly cool. Namely, to renew your baptismal vows at the place you were baptized. Exclamations of awe! That’s such a cool idea! Of course, I get goosebumps when I renew my vows at mass, so maybe it’s just me. Even if it was just for me, though, I applaud this idea, Bishops!


SO MUCH EXCITED!

List #2. Things I hope to do in this Year of Faith:

  • Read this one letter the Pope wrote to me known as Porta Fidei. Reasons why this excites me: (1) I really enjoyed (and still think about) his letters on hope and love… this just completes the series, you know? (2) THE POPE WROTE ME A LETTER, YA’LL. Bad catholic confession: OK, so I 100% thought that there would be a letter coming out today. Wrong. It came out last year. Why did I never read it? Because I thought it was coming out today. Oops.
  • Walk the Camino de Santiago with awesome people.
  • Do awesome things because a life with Jesus is a crazy adventure-life.
  • Get all holy and stuff. Make mistakes in the process (just being real).
  • Blog about this faith. Blog about the people, places, and food I encounter. Faith is an incredible journey.

In closing, I hope you’re just as pumped… or at least getting there. Today you have a decision to make and that decision is: how are you going to deal with this news? Are you going to open your heart to a Year of Faith? Or no?
If I could say anything, I would say, “DO IT!”

Anne and Christine walked last year’s Camino with me. This picture, in so many ways, represents faith life to me. We were physically tired here. We were filthy. We were far from where we needed to be…and the sun was setting. And then we turned a corner and there had been a ROCK SLIDE of construction over the path. And we saw that and burst out laughing… because it was ridiculous. It was hard and so hard, and all we could face it it with laughter. There was joy in our struggle, joy in our path, and joy in our company. Thanks be to God. Anne’s thumbs-up just puts the finishing gold star on this beauty.

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