My Inner Catholic Girl: Part 1

Posted by on May 2, 2018 in My Inner Catholic Girl

My Inner Catholic Girl: Part 1

I’ve finally figured out that locking my Inner Catholic Girl into some dark, confessional-like corner of my psyche doesn’t work. She eventually finds her way out, rips the plug out of my laptop and hides the charging cord.

So as I move forward with the re-publication of my erotic memoir, I’ve decided that this time I’m going to bring her along for the ride.

Last weekend, I took her here.

An abbey of  Benedictine Catholic nuns.  Holy women. Sisters.

 

Their patron saint is a woman, Saint Walburga.

The spiritual seeker in me has always been intrigued whenever I drove by and saw their sign in the no man’s land between Fort Collins, CO and Laramie, Wy.   Catholicism is a thread, albeit a neglected one, in my spiritual tapestry but ever since my father handed his prayer to Mother Mary to me like a baton right before he died three years ago, there has been a little spark there.  

He was a salesman, my dad, a good one…

…and he totally sold me when he said his prayer, that my great grandmother taught him when he was seven, had been the secret to the success of his life. My dad was a happy-go-lucky Irishman with an infectious, positive attitude who thoroughly enjoyed life.

After his funeral, I started integrated his prayer into my early morning practices of meditation, yoga and Reiki as a way to stay connected to him and keep up the blessing he had recited every day for our family.  It’s become a powerful part of my art of being happy.

So when I got the opportunity to go the the Abbey with my friend Jaqueline, who has known the Abess of St Walburga for most of her 24 years, I jumped on it.

The erotica writer who prays to the Virgin Mary having a private audience with a nun. I’ve never pretended to be normal.

We got to hang out with Sister Maria Michael for about 45 minutes.

Besides being joyous, candid and smart, Sister Maria Michael was incredibly intuitive.  It was as if she knew why I was there.  She spoke about discernment and how to make good decisions based on your core beliefs and then commmitting to them fully (like I had just done in this post). She casually spoke of her conversations with her father who had died, opening the floor for me to share mine

“The Irish in particular seem to have a developed sixth sense that makes those conversations possible.” And then she laughed.  “I have about 5 ¼ .” I’m Irish on both sides and a craniosacral therapist to boot.  I have lots of those kinds of conversations, so I think I’m about a 6 1/2.

We asked her to speak of Mary.  Jaqueline’s mother and my father, who died a month apart, were both very devotional to her and had bequeathed the tendency to us.

Sister Maria Michael’s face lit up.   “She’s powerful,” she said. She shared a vision she once had of Mary wearing this beautiful dress…with combat boots, demons scattering away from her brilliance as she marched by.

And then from her robe she pulled out a small bracelet of wooden beads. “I just made this and was wondering who it was for,” she said as she leaned forward and handed it to me.

It wasn’t a bracelet afterall but a mini rosary with ten wooden beads, a crystal bead and a small cross, just the right size for my little Inner Catholic Girl and just the right size for a woman who incorporates a Catholic prayer as about ¼ of her devotional time. It was also an ideal accessory to the wooden Madonna carving that rather magically showed up at my front door a couple weeks after my father died.

I was touched to tears.  She told me how to use it: an Our Father at the crystal bead, ten Hail Mary’s for the wooden beads and then a Glory Be at the cross to finish.

And then as if her work was done, she hugged us both goodbye and hurried off, lamenting that she had to go and write something for an upcoming service.

I didn’t get a chance to talk to her about sexuality and the sexual shame I keep bumping up against with the erotic nature of my writing.

But then as we were leaving, we ran into another nun. After she and Jaqueline embraced, I was introduced.  She was short, her light blue eyes level with mine. I didn’t quite catch her name so she repeated it.

“Sister Magdalene,” she said.  “The bad one.”

I laughed.  “So does the name suits you?”

She paused and thought about it for a moment. “Yes,” she said with a sly  smile.

I know who I want to have an audience with the next time I go to the Abbey.

***

Heads up: I’ve got two more Inner Catholic Girl posts drafted.  We are working through this sexual shame shit. (Love that aliteration.)

4 Comments

  1. This brought tears to my eyes. Your writing is such a gift to me. More than you know!

  2. Jude, I am so happy to hear that. I will keep writing if only for you. Thank you for reading my work and for commenting, such a gift to me.

  3. I want to hear the prayer your father, now you, pray?! And I #1 am so glad you are back at this and #2 can’t wait to hear all about the session with the ‘bad'(wink) nun.

    • Hello My Sexy Artist Friend,
      The prayer is called the Memorare if you want to google it. It means ‘Remember’ in Latin. It’s a prayer to Mother Mary that I’d never heard until my father shared it with me at the end of his life. He said it with the intention of sending guardian angels to every member of our family so I do the same. It’s powerful. Elevating. And by systematically blessing all my family and friends with angels, I feel so much closer to them. I’ll start including you and your family. And I’ll keep you posted on the next Abbey visit. Thanks for dropping in.

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