An apologia for a religious conversion

This is a short set of texts, an apologia [1], for a religious

1. On Stillness
2. On Pilgrimage

Cradle Catholics to the core, a festered heart the secular world will say: two parents trying to raise children to love their Catholic Mass. Here [2], for our entire lives, we’ve filled jampotfuls of our souls at the local Catholic Mass. And offer to God our time as volunteers and support staff. On the cantor’s podium, as catechist and coordinator, on kitchen tables homeschooling this domestic Church. We tried. And waited.

There are no Masses here in our local area where the Propers are sung by the choir and the Roman Canon chanted by the priest. None with a congregation that kneels for Communion nor gives Latin its “pride of place”.

Waiting and watching these bursting dots grow into three little children.

Then in the winter of 2014 the FSSP established a regular Mass in the Extraordinary Form. Very quickly, my wife and I realized that much of the drought in our spiritual life here in southern California drew solution from the deep care and solemn reverence and community of like-minded folk found in the Extraordinary Form. Every single Sunday, on any given Sunday, without fail these few months.

Actions speak louder than words. The way we pray is the way we believe. We will save the world by saving our liturgy. My children will witness the Mass, first celebrated by Junipero Serra under our oaks [3], here in southern California. And their parents will walk with deliberate witness when the time arrives.

So in the winter of 2014 we decided to make every effort to attend and support the Extraordinary Form of the Mass.

sgRegion1. apologia: is Plato’s version of the speech given by Socrates as he defended himself in 399 BC against the charges of “corrupting the young, and by not believing in the gods in whom the city believes, but in other daimonia that are novel”.

2. The San Gabriel Pastoral Region.

3.serra Father Junipero Serra’s first Mass near Monterey Bay in June, 1770, was celebrated beneath the boughs of a coast live oak, as depicted in an 1879 painting by artist Leon Trousset. California Historical Society. Pavlik, Bruce M. Oaks of California. Cachuma Press: Los Olivos, 1995. Print.