punchy line

...and he (Simon Peter) saw the linen wrappings lying there, and the face-cloth ... not lying with the linen wrappings, but rolled up in a place by itself. - Jn 20: 6-7
-Jn 20: 6-7

Monday, April 13, 2015

Dear Upcoming Presidential Election, I Already Hate You

Dear Upcoming Presidential Election, let's just get this out of the way now.

I already hate you.  In fact I've hated all four of you that I have voted in so far.

I see you for what you are.  An overly expensive, farcical dog and pony show whose two candidates leave me morally bankrupt on different levels.

None of the lesser known candidates I really admire will ever make it to President let alone lead the party platform.  They'll get shot down in the first round...again, as will my hope for true change.

Let's skip to the final chapter, shall we presidential election?

At your culmination, we will again have a president who will sit in office for the next four years, passing policies that will rarely ever inspire me on a good day, and blame the opposing party for stalling them the rest of the time.

I just want you to know ahead of time from me that we are not friends, presidential election. You don't like, know or even care to know me and I certainly am sick at the very mention of you.

I am disappointed in you, ashamed of you and if I could avoid ever mentioning you to my children I would.  But the day will come when I will have to tell them about you, and what being a part of you means for someone so wholly and repeatedly disappointed in you with no end to the let downs in sight.

I doubt my kids even know the current president's name.   President?  What's that?  Something that requires an election that you dread coming around every four years, I guess.

So can we just skip this next election, please?  Obama can just hang up his hat and let's just not bother with a replacement.  Please? Congress can continue being constipated and the rest of us holding the country together on the grassroots level can keep our day jobs?

Heck, if we must have an election, maybe we can just draw straws this time?

Who will you parade around this year, presidential election?  The wealthy candidate who uses my values to bait me into voting for them or the wealthy candidate who uses my uses my values to bait me into voting for them?  Hm.  Let's see.

Nope.  You can keep it to yourself, presidential election, or announce it to the world, I really don't care.  Your very name now dishonors the veterans who have died for your sake. I vote almost solely out of hallowed respect for their sacrifice and valor.  

Valor, and honor, by the way, presidential election, are those qualities that command respect in and of themselves and not just because someone in Hollywood threw you a fancy fundraiser.

Let's get this over with, presidential election - I know you are going to come anyway and you know that I am going to have to vote one of your circus animals into office.  It's inevitable.  Let's do this. 

 I only ask that we get this over quickly so that the rest of us busy with real life can get back to it soon.  At least give me that, won't you?  The ability to forget you?   Until the next time.  In which case just reread this then too.  

Monday, April 6, 2015

The Temptation to Skip a Sinner's Funeral

I recently faced an unusual temptation to skip the Catholic funeral of someone whom I know did not live well.

Shame on me.

Pope Francis has literally just called for a year of Mercy and here I am, sinner so aware of my need for mercy, not willing to extend it to my fellow sinner in Christ.  As if it was too late for that person, and like it would be a ...waste?...of my time to attend their funeral.

Again, shame, shame on me, giving them the cheap mercy of "I'll remember you when it is convenient to me and my arms-length, no effort on my part, compassion."

No, my friends.  Only paying homage to those we perceive as deserving of honor in death will not do.  It is not merciful, it is not reverent, it is hardly Christian.

And seriously, which soul needs my prayers the most?  Probably the one at whose funeral it will be a struggle on some level for everyone to pay respects.

So what happened?  I attended the funeral and it was a solemn but respectful affair.  This person, despite their human failings, had always been kind to me and apparently, to others who were grieved for their loss.  It was a good lesson for me never to sweep someone's life under a rug just because their sins were grave and public.  Even heinous sinners leave behind friends and family whose commemoration of their loved one's death also seems to help their own healing.  So it seemed to be the case with this person.

All life and death are empty without Christ and I would not wish separation from God on anyone, whether living or deceased.  So kindly remember to pray for that soul who passed away that if she is not yet in the peace of Christ, she be there soon.  Also, kindly pray for a sinner like me to grow in love for all people during this very aptly named Holy Year of Mercy.