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Home > Support > Teaching the Faith > I am writing out of concern...We are not attending Mass...
Question: I am writing out of concern for my husband and me. We are not attending Mass. I am disgusted about this. I do not know why it is that have not been going; we want to go, we enjoy being there, and we feel good after we have gone. We are not keeping our obligation or receiving the graces of Holy Communion. Part of the problem may be that we work in two different Catholic schools each with its own church. My husband does not agree with the homilies or certain choices made by my pastor. While I can't defend the pastor's poor choices, I can see the good in him and have faith that God would not inspire a vocation that he did not intend to nurture. I might enjoy joining my husband's school's church. I feel a part of my school's parish, because I am often at the community events. Would I be spread too thin if I joined the other parish? Would I never really belong to either? I love to see my students worship with their families on Sunday. I must teach by example. What should I do? I cannot keep living as a hypocrite to my students. I will not continue to disrespect Christ. How can I make Sunday a holy day that is about God and not me? How do I learn how to pray to Jesus for life guidance and direction so that I may allow him to manifest His divine plan in me?

Dear One,

Your letter was such a powerful witness on so many levels that I was literally compelled to read it several times in order to take in all that it meant to me. It was extremely uplifting and spoke to me of the Lord's great love for His precious little ones. Though you may feel 'disgusted' by your lack of attendance to Mass, the dearest Lord feels something quite different. It is His overwhelming love for you that has laid upon your docile heart the desire to return to full communion with the church. Though you are not a mom (yet) it is very apparent that you have a heart for children and that your openness to the Lord's gentle leading is a result of your heart felt love for the Lord as practiced in your vocation of teacher. Remember that Jesus was first called 'Rabonni' or teacher. To teach is to work in imitation of the Lord as He taught His children during public ministry. The Lord continues to teach us everyday and through the gift of grace we are able to accept and learn from His teachings.

Someone loves you and your husband very much. Someone is praying for you both. You may not know this person and this person may not necessarily know you but it is quite clear to me that someone is praying very intently for your return to the church. Someone is offering up a daily prayer or a daily sacrifice for the intention of your return to full communion with the Catholic Church. This someone may be a lovely elderly bedridden person in a nursing home. Perhaps she/he no longer receives visits from family and friends and though this creates a great sorrow in their life they have decided to 'offer it up' on behalf of those who have fallen away from the church. Each day they awake and begin their prayer of sacrifice borne in sorrow for that holy intention. Perhaps the person is the parent of one of your dear students, who sees what I see in you. They see a person who loves her students, who is talented and gifted in the art of teaching, yet there is something lacking. They have looked into your eyes and sense something is not right.They love you and are grateful to you because you have shown a compassion to their child or a tenderness that is holy yet they sense there is a longing. They see a sorrow in you and your husband that can only be comforted by the Lord's tender embrace. They would never approach you to question you or your husband but they have decided to pray earnestly for you each day. Maybe they say a quiet Hail Mary in the morning on the way to their jobs, offered on your behalf. Maybe the person who prays for you and your husband is one of your own parents, whose love is greater than you can imagine. Maybe it is the prayers of a parent or grandparent who have gone on to Heaven.

Whoever is praying for you I know with all my heart that their prayers are powerful. Very powerful indeed!! Their prayers are moving your heart to think about the challenges that you are facing and how those challenges are keeping you and your husband from the great peace afforded in the reception of the Lord's Holy Body during the Eucharist. These prayers are powerful because you have a docile and sweet spirit  that is a result of prayer. Those prayers are washing over you and gently transforming you.

As I prayed for you and your husband last night I kept hearing in my heart two scripture versus that I believe the good Jesus wants me to share with you. Isaiah49:15-16 "Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you. See upon the palms of my hands I have written your name."  John10:11-15 "I am the good shepherd. A good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. A hired man, who is not a shepherd and whose sheep are not his own, sees a wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away, and the wolf catches and scatters them. This is because he works for pay and has no concern for the sheep. I am the good shepherd, and I know mine and mine know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I will lay down my life for the sheep."

There are many wolves in our modern day lives. There are many wolves that seek to scatter, confuse, and destroy us today in this world. Jesus loves you and your husband more than my feeble words can express. I know in my heart that He is using prayers to dispel the wolves in your life that are keeping you from the curative and holy medicine of the Sacrament of Reconciliation and Holy Eucharist. Jesus in not on the sidelines of our lives. He sees our pain and our struggles and He works a powerful work to cure, heal, and restore. Jesus' one desire is to hold you. Jesus' one desire is to hold your husband. Jesus' one desire is for each person that He has created from love is  to go forth in love and to return one day to Ultimate Love.

Go to the Sacrament of Reconciliation (find a priest that does not know you or your husband). Allow yourself the great blessing of pouring your heart out and giving up to Jesus all that you hold onto and all that keeps you from coming nearer to Him. Do not concern yourself with the worthiness of the priest or whether he will 'fuss' at you or not. These concerns are merely 'wolves'. You are speaking with the Good Shepherd and He loves you tenderly and was  willing to die that the wolves of this world should never vex you again. Then after you have received the balm of forgiveness partake in the Food that is beyond human ability to understand. Allow the Lord's Body to nourish and heal all that is broken. After you have fortified yourself in these two sacraments, go quietly and sit before the Tabernacle or the Eucharist in Adoration and tell the sweet Jesus about all the wolves that you are fighting. He will listen and He will slay each one. Remember to pray ten minutes and then listen for ten minutes.

To return to full communion with the Catholic Church may seem like a long journey. Offer up your hardships and fears (wolves)  as you travel the journey for another sojourner on the path. With you on this path is another person who needs your prayers. Your prayers are powerful! Prayers are powerful because they touch the heart of God.

I will be praying for you everyday. I pray for you on the 4th Glorious Mystery. I admire you and have found in your letter a holy witness that uplifts and encourages me. I have received such a great blessing from reading your letter. Jesus has shown me something tender and for me alone through your letter. Thank you so much for writing. Thank you.

Let us pray together a Hail Mary for the intentions of all persons on the journey to Heaven. Lord each of these persons travels beside us and we are their helpmates. Lord show me ways to better follow You and to more peacefully rest in Your embrace and trust in Your love for all Your sheep. Let me know that prayers are powerful. Hold me Jesus as I pray for all those I love each day. Amen.

Sending out a prayer,

Rita Munn

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