Saturday, August 25, 2012

I Have Survived

Well, first I must say that I am sorry it's taken me so long to post.  There are several things I wish to talk about, including the absolute degenerate status of religious orders...sorry - hard to write with a chip on my shoulder.  I went to confession today, and an elderly Irish priest was substituting in place of our recently new replacement at Sacred Heart.  I had mention that I was an ex-Carmelite nun, and he asked me (after telling me he'd been a priest for almost 70 years) to pray for a friend of his.  She was a Carmelite nun who had to leave her convent because of the same fractious spirit afflicting her former community.  Although she had applied to 6 or 7 convents, they all made their excuses to not accept her.  Now there is nothing wrong with her, but unfortunately age discrimination is a plague in the religious orders of the Catholic Church.  I know that first hand from when I joined the convent I was formerly in, of the way the nuns in administration and interior ranks used to comment about not giving God "leftovers."  Yes, you read that right.  Anyone over the age of 35 has to have a martyr's excuse as to why they didn't try to join earlier in life, such as caring for their crippled mother until she died or something.  And after 40 - well, you'd better want it above all else and give twice of what you've got to even get considered.  I know that I am ineligible (because of my PTSD/major depression/Panic Disorder caused from the convent I was in) though I still feel the call to serve, but it is absolutely sickening, that in her hour of need, a servant of the Church and bride of Christ Himself is cast aside because of 50 years already spent in service and could take no more of the factioning and digressive politics that run rampant in many US convents. 
I am still in contact with one nun from my former community, a friend who entered after I did and was there firsthand in all I/we went through and still remained...sometimes I wish she'd forget me, other times I wonder if she or any of the others care at all about me.  I did help a lot to reform that convent, but the price was that of my health, mental health mostly.  Although I pray to St. Dymphna to be cured to serve again, I keep having panic attacks and meltdowns....obviously it's not meant to be.
God graced me, though, in a spiritual way I haven't experienced since I was in the convent.  It was on the Feast of the Assumption.  God only knows why and by how, but a complete change took place.  Not only had I perfect contrition for my sins, a deep love for God and all His creation, and a wonderfully grateful spirit for all I had been given (good and ill), the ardor of my soul was revived and I felt as I had before in the convent.  I was a living spirit & soul of Love itself - a heavenly chosen flower, gathered at the altar on Mary's feast of her Assumption into Heaven; all living, breathing, present for the sole glory of God.  It was wonderful.  And I was so grateful to God and thankful to Mary.  And somehow the thought prevailed upon me, quietly though persistent, that it was partly due to the prayers of that good friend of mine that I had left behind in the convent that all this happened.  What I'm supposed to make of it...I know there are many different ways to look at it and as many explanations for it but I don't much care for how's or why's anymore.  I'm just grateful it happened, and I hope it will happen again.  As the splendor in the firmament (or plainly put, the stars in the night sky) gave me hope of great proportion in my darkest hour as a teen, and thoughts of going to the moon, of being an astronaut, carried me through the roughest patches of PTSD recovery when I left the convent, I'll hold just as dear the dahlias I treasure that bloom this time of year for God cares for them though they toil not... I'm reassured all the more that He does care for me, and for every human being.  God bless you all.