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  • Kimmi posted an update 5 months ago

    @this-is-not-an-alien
    It would seem there is a slight problem with our previous conversation post. So, this is a new one. (:

    Cathy said: “Can’t lose to water? 😉”

    😔 But we did. It was a tie. Fire had more words, water more hours.

    Cathy said: “I love Casting Crown and NeedToBreathe but I can only get those on the radio”
    Couldn’t you get a CD of their music? (I wouldn’t get a NeedToBreathe disc.) It was…sadly disappointing, and sounded like normal secular country music.

    Kimmi/Cathy said: “that hits home. (pun unintended 😛 ?)”
    😊 Yes.

    Cathy said: “But I know I wanted you to explain it and I had thought about studying Islam more indepth at some point in my life…”
    <3 Why are you interested in studying it?

    And my book…. it might be simpler to say why I'm writing it.

    Few Christians know about Islam as they should. <3 I read a lot of non-fiction books on Islam, books about missionaries to the Muslim people, and books about thoughs who converted to Christianity from Islam.
    I see next to no fiction books on Islam. So people, like my mother, who would never touch non-fiction, need something they might read without pressure. Something they don't know is educational and based on true and accurate happenings, until the end, and I tell them it's all going on today.
    Almost everything I use is based, meshed, and switched, on actual accounts. I need people to know Islam is not peaceful. I need them to know allah is nothing like God. I need them to have passion to save thoughs who are being lost.
    So I write.
    And pray.

    My main character is a man named Gregory Abdelrahman. He starts out as an immigrant to America with his family, at age eight. It is a strong Muslim home, and they follow the Quran and Hadith. I follow his life, from his birth, until his death.

    That said, if you ever have any questions about Islam, at all, I'd love to help! 🙃

    "my bad I have the attention span of a sugar-high hummingbird."
    Aww, 🥰 I like that.

    Cathy said: "But people do need to explore who they are or else they’ll never understand other people either and they’ll never heal if they don’t know what to heal. I wish more people were purposeful about their actions instead of going through the motions."
    <3

    Cathy said: "Pleeeeeaaase ask me!"
    😄
    I like you too.

    Cathy said: "I’ve been dying to talk about my Faith and learn about other peoples’ beliefs, I want to entirely own my beliefs and not be just a product of my circumstances and the ideas I grew up with."
    Admirable. <3

    Cathy said: "Don’t worry about being rude either, ask about anything, challenge anything it’ll teach me what’s at the heart of belief. Please tell me everything about your religion (:"
    😊 I'll still try not to be rude. Thank you!
    What questions do you have about what I believe?

    Question numero uno: I've heard Catholics pray to Mary… is that true?
    Question numero dos: Why do Catholics have statues of Mary, like small altars?

    Cathy said: "I can’t hate anyone for longer than three minutes but that’s as long as I can focus on any one thing"
    *small happy smile* Ja, I liken you.

    Cathy said: "please tell me if I push it for you and I’ll tell you the same."
    Thank you!

    Cathy said: "are there any media outlets I shouldn’t use to in debate"
    None really not to use, though I believe my father has a list of ones he trusts… 🤔

    Cathy said: "please no stats they’re way too easy to manipulate."
    Gotcha.

    Well, for an opener… I believe there was serious voter fraud this year.
    And… I'm so disappointed in the whole of America at this point, January 13th, year of our Lord 2021.

    Cathy said: "Thanks! 🙂"
    You're welcome! That's good. (:

    Cathy said: "Come Alive/Dry Bones is one of my favorites too!"
    Yey!!!

    Cathy said: "She did You Say too, right?"
    Yes. (:

    Cathy said: "And Chain of Love, yes!!!"
    Wow. I've had yet to find someone who had heard it before. Incredible… <3

    Cathy said: "I like you!"
    Thank you! I like you too.

    Cathy said: "My brother's doing good"
    Goot.

    Cathy said: "you should ask him yourself he's a little shy but I think he'll like you"
    😶 Literal thought, /But he's a boy./
    (But, my best friend's a boy, so that's no excuse.) 🤔 Ack… Okay….

    😄 Anyways…. How are you Cathy? <3

    • Hello!
      I have started an email list, and I was wandering if you’d be interested in subscribing?

      What I will be emailing you, if you sign up:

      -Short articles from things I learn about God

      -Funny or meaningful things that happen in my life

      -Occasional short stories

      -Occasional poetry (By myself, and others.)

      -Perhaps even guest emails from my dearest friend!

      I will try to email you once a week. But if there is a silence, it is because I don’t wish to waste your time with blather. I will also reply to your emails!

      To unsubscribe, all you need do is email me, and say the word. I know life is crazy! There will be no hard feelings!

      To join, you can either email the word ‘subscribe’ to kimberlygrace.takeheart@outlook.com. Or, you could comment here, and I will private message you for your email.

      Thank you so much for reading this far! Please let me know if you would like to be added, and tell people you think would be interested!

      Thank you again!

      Kimberly Grace

      • I would love to subscribe! I’m sorry I haven’t been able to reply for a couple days for some reason the posts here were completely out of wack with me even tho I was able to read your last post but not send mine so:(
        I’m fantasywriter2018@outlook.com. And thanks!

    • “It was a tie. Fire had more words, water more hours.”
      That’s…oddly poetic considering fire is energetic and water is longlasting. Congrats on the wordcount!

      “Couldn’t you get a CD of their music? (I wouldn’t get a NeedToBreathe disc.) It was…sadly disappointing, and sounded like normal secular country music.”
      There probably is a way but radio is free and I can’t wear out my favorite songs by playing them a billion times at once 🙂

      “<3 Why are you interested in studying it?”
      I’ve heard a lot of different things, you know, of Muslims not being as bad as they’re made up to be and stuff and then all the terrorist attacks like 9/11 and it’s possible those are just extremists and not well representative of the whole religion but I haven’t done intensive research so I don’t know solidly either way. I do know former-President Obama swore in on the Koran, women are considered less than human according to the Koran and I’ve read a book about a Muslim who converted and was tortured for his Faith before he escaped. But I don’t have a systematic solid enough case to accurately portray and express that to people who haven’t heard much about Islam or have heard the “fluff talk” about it. And I like to empathize with all sides in my writing even when I strongly disagree so I like to learn things from every perspective.
      I also want to study Judaism because the Bible has even more layers to it when seen from the Jewish perspective because during His Life Jesus lived as a devout Jew like at the Last Supper Jesus didn’t actually finish the Passover meal in the upper room; the last (fourth) cup of the sacrifice was on the Cross when He said “It is finished” also translated “it is consummated” and there’s a buncha other things that Jews would notice off the bat but we don’t and I just like learning…

      “Question numero uno: I've heard Catholics pray to Mary… is that true?Question numero dos: Why do Catholics have statues of Mary, like small altars?”
      Ah that. Yes it tends to freak people out usually because “prayer” is often used synonymously with “worship” and that confuses most everybody. We do pray to Mary and the saints but we don’t worship them. We believe of course that the Blessed Virgin and the saints are in heaven and therefore are in perfect union with God. Because they’re so close to God that they see His Face, we often ask them to pray for us and whatever we’re praying for because “the prayer of a righteous man has great power in its effects” and “when two or three are gathered together in My Name there I am”.
      We’re especially fond of Mary both because she’s Jesus’s Mom and we believe from the moment of her conception we was perfect because “no bad tree can produce good fruit” so if Jesus was perfectly human (and perfectly God at the same time; that took a lot of ecumenical counsels and would be a super long footnote if ya want) then Mary had to be perfect if He were formed in her womb. When we pray to Mary it’s because she leads us to God and she is the perfect model of God’s transformative love for us and shows how it is possible for us to “be perfect as Your Heavenly Father is perfect”. Also very often the Virgin appears miraculously with God’s messages to the world; our Lady of Fatima, and our Lady of Guadeloupe are two of the most famous apparitions and Mary makes more sense when you read her words. The Church thoroughly investigates evidence of miracles before approving them to be sure they are not either demonic or products of delusions or insanity (could be really long footnote here also). No Catholics are required to believe in miracles or pray to Mary and the saints but it can and often does help and inspire people to pray to them.
      “Question numero dos: Why do Catholics have statues of Mary, like small altars?”
      We have small alters and statues of Mary because we’re conspiring to really flatter our Lord by praising His Mother, because we believe she has a mother’s love for us and God provided her to be our mother so that we have both heavenly parents as a complete family and because we believe she’ll pray for us before God and she knows exactly how to pray in the most pleasing way to Him. One of our favorite Catholic prayers is the Rosary which generally consists in saying the Lord’s Prayer and the Hail Mary.
      The Lord’s Prayer, or the Our Father is the prayer Jesus taught His disciples when they asked Him to teach them to pray…actually idk if you guys pray the Our Father, do you? And the “Hail Mary” are the words the angel Gabriel in Luke said; “Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you.” and then pieced together from but not strictly quoting Mary’s words to Elizabeth “blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.” then years later somebody added “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen.”
      So that’s the long-winded but still pretty minimalist explanation. We also had statues of saints like Mother Teresa as examples and *cue the verge another long-winded explanation* XD

      Question numero uno; I know my (really cool) Baptist friend/cousin doesn’t have the book of Maccabees from the Old Testament in her Bible, do you? And do you have the book of James in the New Testament?
      Question numero dos; how do different pastors decide on teachings of Faith and morals in their parish in unity with the rest of the Church?
      Question numero three (or probably tres but too lazy to Google); I know pastors can marry but priests are vowed to celibacy (and there’s a potential footnote for that too (: ) but is there a particular Biblical/theological reasoning behind their marrying?

      “Well, for an opener… I believe there was serious voter fraud this year.”
      Heh, the understatement of 2020-2021. 120% of the population “voted” and the Domain program for online voting has some serious connections with China (as does covid). Trump won in a landslide and we all know it, right now we’re in the middle of an unofficial civil war. “And… I'm so disappointed in the whole of America at this point, January 13th, year of our Lord 2021.”
      Yeah, no disagreeing there.
      But what do you think of the while Black Lives Matter thing? I think they’re terrorist groups manipulating people into their agenda but being said I haven’t gathered solid evidence for or against the actual racism issue but I think it’s just a red herring. I’m also very pro-cops and I’ve researched the entire lack of actual post-trauma treatment for police and no wonder they can find violence there when they search hard enough!

      Literal thought, /But he's a boy./
      Lol, ikr! My stupid self never knew talking to guys the exact same way I talk to girls constitutes “flirting” until my mom pointed it out to me and now I’m just like :/ to it like why can’t we just talk to people like people?! But then I’m way tomboy and still like jabbing people for some reason and friendly wrestling…and throwing things kinda compulsively when I’m bored and climbing and doing chaotic stupid stuff.

      Anyways…. How are you Cathy? <3
      Physically or emotionally or psychologically or spiritually? Idk why I find it so hard to answer that question I need to stop overanalyzing. I’m at peace with everything cos God’s holding me so that be how I be I guess…
      How are you, Kim?

      • I found it!!!!!!!!!!!!!
        Ahem. (:

        Uno momento… o….. gran minutos…

      • My posts were whacky too…. <3

      • @this-is-not-an-alien

        Cathy: “Muslims not being as bad as they’re made up to be”

        Seventy percent (roughly, and that was several years ago) of Muslims are peaceful. They want to live their lives, do good, and be peaceful. But they are not following their Quran, at least, if they are in contact with people who refuse to follow allah.

        Cathy: “I haven’t done intensive research so I don’t know solidly either way.”
        You should look at ‘Secret Beleivers’ by Brother Andrew. It was the first book I read about Islam, and those who leave Islam. It was very good, and is drawn from true stories. (I don’t know if this would be an extra pull to buy it, but it’s amazing. <3 Part of it is from a Catholic priest's perspective.) He was a good man… <3
        You could probably decide from that book if you're interested in more. (And if you are… I have many lectures and books I could recommend.) (:

        Cathy: "I do know former-President Obama swore in on the Koran"
        *Nods*

        Cathy: "women are considered less than human according to the Koran"
        To be exact, women are worth half as men, or worth as much as dogs. And,… I don't remember which verse in the Quran, but somewhere it orders men to beat their wives into subjection. </3 It's awful… I could go into more about this, but…. </3 It's awful….

        Cathy: "I’ve read a book about a Muslim who converted and was tortured for his Faith before he escaped."
        Oooooh. What book! (:

        Cathy: "I like to empathize with all sides in my writing even when I strongly disagree so I like to learn things from every perspective."
        *nods* <3 That actually is incredibly helpful.
        I actually got into a discussion with three girls, arguing for Islam and allah, from one of my character's point of view. That was really good.

        You know… I could try to get my main character to try to convert you to Islam… or at least tell you about it and get you interested, and we could see how that goes…. And how you refute each other…

        Cathy: "I also want to study Judaism because the Bible has even more layers to it when seen from the Jewish perspective"
        Indeed!!!!
        My best friend is a Jew. (:

        Cathy: "during His Life Jesus lived as a devout Jew like at the Last Supper Jesus didn’t actually finish the Passover meal in the upper room; the last (fourth) cup of the sacrifice was on the Cross when He said “It is finished” also translated “it is consummated” and there’s a buncha other things that Jews would notice off the bat but we don’t and I just like learning…"
        🥰🥰🥰

        Oh!!!! Something else Jews then would notice!!!!!
        You know how Jesus said, "My God, my God, why have You forsaken Me?"
        There were no verse or chapter numbers in the different books of the Bible then. (It actually was just the scriptures in different scrolls of volumes, The Law/The Prophets/The Psalms, but onward…) So how did they tell people to recite from a certain passage? They would say the first line of the passage, and people would know where to go.
        "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" Is the first line of Psalm 22. When Jesus quoted the first line, that was telling people to recite or think on the Psalm that started that way.
        Do you know what that Psalm's about?
        *almost jumping with excitement* Ahem, I'll let you look it up… (:

        As for Catholicism, what you told me… was it mostly catechism just then? (That's not a bad thing, if so, really cool actually…and useful.)

        Aye, prayer doesn't mean worship… It means speaking/talking. So when we pray to God, we are talking with God.

        I think my problem was… the talking to dead people. I have a hard time believing people who are dead can hear us when we speak to them… Seeing as they're dead and in Heaven/or Hell. And everyone but God can only be in one place at one time. So, either they're here on earth listening to us, or in Heaven with God. That just confuses me.
        In the past I've asked God if He could give people messages for me in Heaven. (For example: Dear Father, Would You mind telling my grandpa I miss him? And that I love him still?) But, speaking to them directly I don't quite understand.

        Sorry if that was confusing! I can try to reword it.

        "We believe of course that the Blessed Virgin and the saints are in heaven and therefore are in perfect union with God."
        *nods* Mhm.

      • @this-is-not-an-alien

        Then, how was Mary perfect? If you take the verse, “no bad tree can produce good fruit”, to mean that… How was Mary produced unless both of her parents were perfect as well?
        (I’m sorry. I’m sure there’s an answer for why you believe that, I’m just trying to understand. Just ask, and I’ll stop.) <3

        "Mary it’s because she leads us to God and she is the perfect model of God’s transformative love for us"
        I thought Jesus Christ is the symbol of God's love for us. And that it is He who leads us to God. And Jesus Christ is the symbol and our roadmap of what He wishes to work through us?

        "Also very often the Virgin appears miraculously with God’s messages to the world"
        Interesting.

        "The Church thoroughly investigates evidence of miracles before approving them to be sure they are not either demonic or products of delusions or insanity"
        That's good!

        I believe God still works miracles today… and have witnessed one for certain. <3
        I also believe God still sends dreams and visions to people. <3

        "We have small alters and statues of Mary because we’re conspiring to really flatter our Lord by praising His Mother"
        That's interesting.
        *chooses not to pick at 'praising'.* I don't believe you meant it that way… (:

        "God provided her to be our mother so that we have both heavenly parents as a complete family"
        Aww, that's sweet and interesting.

        "actually idk if you guys pray the Our Father, do you?"
        Actually, yes. 😊
        My father used to come into my room every night, and help me recite it until I had it memorized. (:
        And now I often think about each part of the Lord's prayer, and what it means, and why He has us say each thing. So I know what I'm praying, and mean it, and it's not a vain repetition. (:
        So, yes.
        But I also pray my own prayers. (But I try to do it like Jesus said to. Starting with praising God and His name. Then, well…. a long list I could go down. 😄)

        "And the “Hail Mary” are the words the angel Gabriel in Luke said; “Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you.”"
        I never knew that what you all meant by 'Hail Mary'! That makes so much sense!!!!! And it answers one question I was going to ask 'Where does the 'Hail Mary' prayer come from?'… Danke.

        "then pieced together from but not strictly quoting Mary’s words to Elizabeth “blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.”"
        Oh.

        "years later somebody added “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen.”"
        And… back to what I asked about talking to dead people.

        But that did clear up a lot of jumbledness in my mind! Thank you!!!

        "*cue the verge another long-winded explanation* XD"
        😁

        "Question numero uno; I know my (really cool) Baptist friend/cousin doesn’t have the book of Maccabees from the Old Testament in her Bible, do you?"
        No, I do not. We do not believe it is part of the inspired word of God. (Though I would love to read it sometime! It's where the holiday Hanukkah comes from…)

        "And do you have the book of James in the New Testament?"
        Yes! At a time it was my favourite book in the Bible. (Now my favourite is Genesis. (: )

      • Cathy: “is there a particular Biblical/theological reasoning behind their marrying?”
        Behind priests being allowed to marry? (I’ve actually always wondered why Catholics don’t allow their priests to marry if they want… Is it so they will focus more on God, instead of their prospective wife?)
        But, back to the answer…

        The Bible mentions pastors/deacons/bishops/priests (depending on the translation) as having wives in 1 Timothy 3, and how they are supposed to go about having them.
        And it gives the reason they are to be able to take care of their own family in verse- 4 “one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence” 5 “(for if a man does not know how to rule his own house, how will he take care of the church of God?);”
        So, if our leaders in the church have families, it teaches them to be better leaders of the church. Because they know how to take care of that small flock, and guide them, and restrain them, and cheer them, and help them- it helps them guide their larger one. (Which is why, if a pastor divorces his wife, or they have children they can’t control, many churches will ask them to step down from their position. Because… if they can’t teach their wife and children to respect God, how can they teach others correctly?) It’s a sort of test, and way to try the teachers/leaders.

        Though, of course there is the apostle Paul, who never married. Pastors/teachers/preists/deacons are not required to marry. It is good to do so, but better not to, but not always. (It all depends on several things Paul says better than me.) In the first part of 1 Timothy 4 it lists things that are bad, and as signs of things going against the faith. “forbidding to marry,” is one of them. So, we try not to forbid people to marry. (Of course, that is assuming they have not been married before/or are widowed/or the other spouse has committed fornication/and we’re not talking about marrying animals or people of the same gender.) AHEM. Just ordinary marriage is not to be forbidden, so we don’t.
        It’s great if you want to get married!!!
        But, it’s also great if you want to remain single!!!! Whatever you feel with help you honour and serve God more.
        1 Corinthians 7 covers the ‘do not be married’ side as well. Paul recommends you don’t get married, except in some circumstances. But he does not forbid ordinary plain marriage.

        Then of course, there is the old… ‘It is not good for man to be alone’ argument… But, you probably already know that one. And ‘He who finds a wife, finds a good thing, and obtains favour from the Lord’…

        Does that make sense?

      • “(as does covid).”
        Oof. *nods*

        “Trump won in a landslide and we all know it, right now we’re in the middle of an unofficial civil war.”
        *nods*

        “But what do you think of the while Black Lives Matter thing?”
        An anti-family, anti-father, for LGBT, anti-any life (except the life they choose to think is worthy)…. And… just a bad organization.
        People can give themselves an amazing name, but be nothing but bones and rotting flesh inside.

        “I think they’re terrorist groups manipulating people into their agenda”
        ( * . * )

        “gathered solid evidence for or against the actual racism issue but I think it’s just a red herring.”
        The fact that a young black girl was shot dead just a week after Mr. Floyd might be good…. Did you hear about it? Maybe not. There was a ‘Race Talk’ I went to, and it one of the black men mentioned that…. How ‘Black Lives Matter’ truly believe no lives matter. I’m not sure if I could find the report, I mean… I probably could… Though, looking up ‘Black girls murdered 2020’ probably wouldn’t bring up the sort of stuff I want to sift through… <3

        "I’m also very pro-cops"
        Us too. <3

        "I’ve researched the entire lack of actual post-trauma treatment for police and no wonder they can find violence there when they search hard enough!"
        <3

        "My stupid self never knew talking to guys the exact same way I talk to girls constitutes “flirting” until my mom pointed it out to me"
        *brows lift* Haveawhat??? 😐 *just goes and crawls into a hole and hides….*

        "why can’t we just talk to people like people?!"
        *nods*

        "Physically or emotionally or psychologically or spiritually?"
        How about we assume all three from henceforth? <3

        "I’m at peace with everything cos God’s holding me so that be how I be I guess…"
        <3

        "How are you, Kim?"
        Like you, I'm blessed to be saved and held by Jesus Christ. <3 Without Him, I know where I'd be, and it wouldn't be good.

        "how do different pastors decide on teachings of Faith and morals in their parish in unity with the rest of the Church?"
        *doesn't quite know what you mean*
        How do we keep pastors all teaching the same things, maybe? Yea? Nay?
        I'm sorry.

      • And done!!!!

        How are you doing now Cathy?

      • @this-is-not-an-alien

        I just listened to this. It answers your question about violence and Islam. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DR1j5aeiGZk
        (For when you have time.) (:
        It’s about an hour long.

    • KIMMIIIIIII!*bowls over with hug*

      “You should look at ‘Secret Beleivers’ by Brother Andrew. It was the first book I read about Islam, and those who leave Islam. It was very good, and is drawn from true stories. (I don’t know if this would be an extra pull to buy it, but it’s amazing. <3 Part of it is from a Catholic priest's perspective.) He was a good man… <3You could probably decide from that book if you're interested in more. (And if you are… I have many lectures and books I could recommend.) (:”
      Thanks a bunch!

      “To be exact, women are worth half as men, or worth as much as dogs. And,… I don't remember which verse in the Quran, but somewhere it orders men to beat their wives into subjection. </3 It's awful… I could go into more about this, but…. </3 It's awful….”
      *Nods* and what’s worse I’ve heard we’re starting to have “special courts” in America according to Muslim law!

      “Cathy: "I’ve read a book about a Muslim who converted and was tortured for his Faith before he escaped."Oooooh. What book! (:”
      Tortured For Christ by …well I can’t seem to relocate it in Mom’s billions of religious books that I borrowed without asking permission…*sheepish grin*

      “I actually got into a discussion with three girls, arguing for Islam and allah, from one of my character's point of view. That was really good.”
      *nods empathically* me liken!

      “You know… I could try to get my main character to try to convert you to Islam… or at least tell you about it and get you interested, and we could see how that goes…. And how you refute each other…”
      I’d love that! It sounds fun!

      “Indeed!!!!My best friend is a Jew. (:”
      That’s soo cool!

      “You know how Jesus said, "My God, my God, why have You forsaken Me?"There were no verse or chapter numbers in the different books of the Bible then. (It actually was just the scriptures in different scrolls of volumes, The Law/The Prophets/The Psalms, but onward…) So how did they tell people to recite from a certain passage? They would say the first line of the passage, and people would know where to go."My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" Is the first line of Psalm 22. When Jesus quoted the first line, that was telling people to recite or think on the Psalm that started that way.Do you know what that Psalm's about?*almost jumping with excitement* Ahem, I'll let you look it up… (:”
      *bouncing up and down* YESSSSS!!!! I MEMORIZED THAT PSALM!!!
      …ahem…well, Mom had us memorize psalms instead of poetry and we pray the Office every night which saturates the psalms into the prayers.

      “As for Catholicism, what you told me… was it mostly catechism just then? (That's not a bad thing, if so, really cool actually…and useful.)”
      I…actually don’t know…I was learning catechism questions and answers since I could talk and we read and study a lot more than a lot of Catholics I guess. So probably a mix of catechism and personal reading and all those fascinating movies about different aspects of theology and some just prayerful meditation.

      “I think my problem was… the talking to dead people. I have a hard time believing people who are dead can hear us when we speak to them… Seeing as they're dead and in Heaven/or Hell. And everyone but God can only be in one place at one time. So, either they're here on earth listening to us, or in Heaven with God. That just confuses me.In the past I've asked God if He could give people messages for me in Heaven. (For example: Dear Father, Would You mind telling my grandpa I miss him? And that I love him still?) But, speaking to them directly I don't quite understand.
      Sorry if that was confusing! I can try to reword it.”
      Oh no problem it makes perfect sense! My priest and my parents explained it like this; Heaven and Hell aren’t actually places but states of being or else guardian angels would want to kill their humans as soon as possible to get back to Heaven (…oh, which reminds me, do you believe in guardian angels?) and souls that go to Heaven don’t have bodies until the end of the world when God restores all of creation and “creates a new Heaven and a new Earth” (idk, that’s something I’ll have to pull intensive study to make sense of and it’s probably a “mystery” like the mystery of the Holy Trinity). …what was I talking about? Oh right! But we believe the souls of the dead we can still pray to. I usually don’t very often tho and usually a shorter prayer like to my grandmother and several of my siblings who died before they were born. And I pray very often to St Antony; patron saint of finding lost things XD.

      “Then, how was Mary perfect? If you take the verse, “no bad tree can produce good fruit”, to mean that… How was Mary produced unless both of her parents were perfect as well?(I’m sorry. I’m sure there’s an answer for why you believe that, I’m just trying to understand. Just ask, and I’ll stop.) <3”
      Y’know I never got that one either! But I bet they’ve got something on it in whichever council established the title the “Immaculate Conception”. I’m gonna ask around and see.

      “I thought Jesus Christ is the symbol of God's love for us. And that it is He who leads us to God. And Jesus Christ is the symbol and our roadmap of what He wishes to work through us?”
      Well I never thought of Jesus as a symbol even tho he used a lot of Old Testament symbolism and…archetypes? (there’s a special word for it…yea I’ve completely lost it). We believe Jesus Christ is God and leads us to God the Father and the Holy Spirit is the Endless Living Love that flows between them and that they’re “One God in three Persons” (don’t ask, not even the most learned saints could completely figure that one out although St Patrick is famous for using a three leaf clover to explain). Jesus is our roadmap, teacher and priest (“prince, prophet and priest” in the more advanced catechisms). But we also think of Mary as our perfect model too, we also think of the saints as models.

      “I believe God still works miracles today… and have witnessed one for certain. <3I also believe God still sends dreams and visions to people. <3”
      Yes and it’s amazing! I believe He works miracles every second all around the world. Can you tell me about it, the miracle you witnessed I mean?

      “*chooses not to pick at 'praising'.* I don't believe you meant it that way… (:”
      Lol yea XD

      “Actually, yes. My father used to come into my room every night, and help me recite it until I had it memorized. (:And now I often think about each part of the Lord's prayer, and what it means, and why He has us say each thing. So I know what I'm praying, and mean it, and it's not a vain repetition. (:So, yes.”
      Yes! We probably have ogles of books just on the Our Father!

      “But I also pray my own prayers. (But I try to do it like Jesus said to. Starting with praising God and His name. Then, well…. a long list I could go down. )”
      Yes 🙂 ! Sometimes I just sit there and be quiet with Him. I used to chatter a lot to Him, now I usually do things with him like my math.

      “"Question numero uno; I know my (really cool) Baptist friend/cousin doesn’t have the book of Maccabees from the Old Testament in her Bible, do you?"No, I do not. We do not believe it is part of the inspired word of God. (Though I would love to read it sometime! It's where the holiday Hanukkah comes from…)”
      Oh yea! It’s a good read, very bloody tho.

      “"And do you have the book of James in the New Testament?"Yes! At a time it was my favourite book in the Bible. (Now my favourite is Genesis. (: )”
      Ooh dang! I can never pick a favorite book in the Bible for more than a couple days all of them are so amazing!!

      “The Bible mentions pastors/deacons/bishops/priests (depending on the translation) as having wives in 1 Timothy 3, and how they are supposed to go about having them.And it gives the reason they are to be able to take care of their own family in verse- 4 “one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence” 5 “(for if a man does not know how to rule his own house, how will he take care of the church of God?);”So, if our leaders in the church have families, it teaches them to be better leaders of the church. Because they know how to take care of that small flock, and guide them, and restrain them, and cheer them, and help them- it helps them guide their larger one.”
      Ok! That makes sense. Thank you! It may take me a bit with life being lifeish but I swear I’ll get back to you one unmarried priests!

      “(Which is why, if a pastor divorces his wife, or they have children they can’t control, many churches will ask them to step down from their position. Because… if they can’t teach their wife and children to respect God, how can they teach others correctly?) It’s a sort of test, and way to try the teachers/leaders.”
      But, wouldn’t that encourage pastors to be excessively harsh or controlling of their family? I know someone who’s ADHD and Asperger's whose father was a pastor and he left home when he was sixteen because they couldn’t reconcile with each other.
      I guess any position of power invites abuse tho and for every one abusive teacher/leader there’s ogles who aren’t. Speaking of which, what do you think of the Catholic priest scandal?
      I didn’t know pastors could divorce, Catholics can’t divorce once they’re married with the ‘two becoming one’ thing. Sometimes, Catholics get an annulment meaning it wasn’t a valid marriage to begin with.

      “The fact that a young black girl was shot dead just a week after Mr. Floyd might be good…. Did you hear about it? Maybe not. There was a ‘Race Talk’ I went to, and it one of the black men mentioned that…. How ‘Black Lives Matter’ truly believe no lives matter. I’m not sure if I could find the report, I mean… I probably could… Though, looking up ‘Black girls murdered 2020’ probably wouldn’t bring up the sort of stuff I want to sift through… <3”
      I hadn’t heard about that, but it certainly makes sense. I probably wouldn’t be able to use it for direct evidence for or against racism tho because so many different sides can reinterpret it so many different ways. I have to find stuff that directly correlates with blm actions and philosophies to…argue with a friend basically. Right now I’m in the midst of Marxism and the self-proclaimed blm goals (which are freaky I’ve been to their site to check XD).

      “"My stupid self never knew talking to guys the exact same way I talk to girls constitutes “flirting” until my mom pointed it out to me"*brows lift* Haveawhat??? *just goes and crawls into a hole and hides….*”
      Well, in all fairness that’s my opinion there. And I am one of those excessively enthusiastic with very little self-awareness people who can treat complete strangers like their new bestie. I’ve never actually met someone who interpreted it as flirting, as far as I know, aside from my mom but I’ve also not really had much experience with people outside my family.

      “"how do different pastors decide on teachings of Faith and morals in their parish in unity with the rest of the Church?"*doesn't quite know what you mean*How do we keep pastors all teaching the same things, maybe? Yea? Nay?I'm sorry.”
      Sorry, that was vague I guess. In the Catholic church, we aline our mass readings over three liturgical years so like every priest in the world is reading the same exerts from the Bible at any given time and they’re carefully pulled together like with the psalm “My God, my God why have You abandoned me” is probably directly linked with one of the next readings like the Crucifixion and pretty much all the reading are carefully linked like that over years of study to compile it well. And also the readings are pulled carefully from the Old and New Testaments so even if Catholics don’t read their Bible at home (which they should and it’s really encouraged) they’ll still get a sampling of almost every book in the Bible in going to Sunday mass.
      And, officially, even if it’s not proclaimed by our pope right now, the Church has already declared homosexual marriage to not be a valid marriage and abortion to be wrong. Any Catholic priest who teaches otherwise is not teaching the Catholic Faith. But their are priests who do teach those things and they aren’t in unity with the rest of the Church; bishops and the pope have the authority to ask them to step down or revoke their erroneous teaching, or if they don’t listen to take away their priestly authority, or in the absolute extremes to excommunicate them (proclaim that they are not Catholic until they come back to God’s Laws).
      So, I guess what I mean is; what do you do when people disagree about important aspects of your Faith?

      “And done!!!!
      How are you doing now Cathy?”
      I guess fairly well, very blessed by God.
      Oh, I was reading your poem, Grief, I thought it was…I can’t quite find the word for it, but it felt so identifiable and accurate. What lead you to begin writing it?

    • Oh right now we’re celebrating Lent which we do in preparation for Easter. We imitate Jesus’s example of going to the desert forty days to be tempted (spiritually, lol no available deserts right beside us). So we give up something like sweets or coffee or some sort of comfort like that and we give up meat on Fridays. The goal is to confront spiritual poverty and weakness and develop a greater reliance on God’s graces.
      Do you do Lent and would you like to try it?

      • @this-is-not-an-alien

        *gets bowled over by hug, but appreciates it greatly, hugging back tightly* Thanks.

        I still need to come back and answer the long comment, BUT, just encase that takes several days to get to, I wanted to say hello. (:
        Hi!

        Cathy: “Do you do Lent and would you like to try it?”
        We sometimes do Lent. My grandma gives up chocolate every year.
        Last year at youth, on Ash Wednesday, Mr. Shaylor (our youth pastor) talked about fasting and all the different things we could fast. (From food, to free time, to behaviors.) He also told us why we fasted, and what we were to do in place of what we were fasting. Close to the end, all who wished to do the fast were asked to come down to the altar. A friend of our youth pastor took the ash of palm leaves, and put a cross symbol on our foreheads, (I mean… those of us who wanted to go down), and then blessed us in Latin… *I have no remembrance of the translation Mr. Shaylor told us*. That was the first time I fasted for Lent.

    • Hi! *happily hugs you again*
      Oh my brother gives up all sweets every Lent, one year I gave up coffee except on weekends (I broke it like the first week XD but after the first week I usually get into a rhythm). Yes! We have a special Mass for Ash Wednesday and we use the ashes of the palm branches from…ugh the name of the feast escapes me but it’s when Jesus entered the town on a colt and the people sang Hosanna and set palm branches in his path. Me likes Mr. Shaylor, he sounds like a great pastor.
      This Lent I’m trying to focus on improving my relationships (ie, actually telling people what’s wrong and letting myself be vulnerable by trusting someone who could smash my over-sensitive heart into a bigillion pieces*shudders*) because God made us to love and be loved and we have to invest and give at least as much as we want to receive in a relationship (and yikes that is nerve-racking). But I also gave up sweets XD! (and trying to manage my emotional numbing as presents in mindlessly surfing the Internet even tho there are tons of other things I’d rather be doing but they take mental/emotional effort).
      Oh I also did some digging on why we believe Mary is perfect and I actually couldn’t find any reference to the verse about “no bad tree producing good fruit” for the Immaculate Conception so I guess I was wrong there and that isn’t one of the usual verses the Church uses to defend that claim. Instead, in the official Church document, Ineffabilis Deus, it cites Genesis 3:15, Luke 1:26-38 and Revelation 12. (At least that’s what my theology DVD uses XD). What the Church states by the ‘Immaculate Conception’ is that Mary was born without Original Sin or any inclination to sin and throughout her life was completely free from sin because she gave birth to Christ who is both God and man in two inseparable natures.
      So with Genesis; ‘I will put enmity between you and woman, and between your seed and her seed.’ We typically say ‘the woman’ is Mary who symbolizes the ‘New Eve’ like Jesus is the ‘New Adam’. So we say Mary and her ‘seed’ (which is a term that translates to mean those with like purpose or blood relations or spiritual family etc) are completely and utterly without preservation against Satan. For her to be 100% against Satan we believe that she can’t be under any of his control which is sin. If she’s completely and utterly in ‘enmity’ against Satan then she has to be free from sin. That and we also see Mary as the New Ark of the Covenant because only the Ark ever held the Real Presence of Christ during the Old Testament and so, containing Christ, the Ark had to be completely pure. Because God said He would put enmity it must supernatural.
      Then in Luke the angel doesn’t say ‘Hail Mary’ instead he says ‘Hail, Full-of-Grace’ (kecharitomene) which is a new name like Israel, Abraham, Sarah and Peter. The word it’s derived from it only used afterward once in Ephesians 1:6-7, but in this case the verb is used in the perfect sense so it’s ‘have been full of grace’.
      And Revelation just sums up everything there about enmity. There’s still a lot more for that tho, there’s a whole mini series called The Bible and the Virgin Mary Journey Through Scripture but yea this is some of it….thanks for asking I would’ve have ended up watching that otherwise XD.
      Now, priest celibacy, that’s the next one I promise I’ll get back to it!

    • Ok, sorry that took so long but I’ve (finally) compiled some of the reasons Catholic priests are celibate. One of the reasons is, like you said, to focus more on God than a prospective wife. We believe the priesthood (–and similar orders like nuns and friars and monks–) is a particularly high calling raised to the dignity of a sacrament like marriage. While in marriage, two people make an inviolable commitment to love and honor one another with the intimacy of becoming one, in the priesthood priests make an inviolable commitment to God with such a degree of intimacy with Christ through the Holy Spirit as to serve in the Mass in persona Christi.
      We gather this belief on celibacy from Matthew 19;10-12: “The disciples said to Him, “If such is the case of a man with his wife, it is not expedient to marry.” But He said to them, “Not all can receive this precept, but only those to whom it is given. For there are eunuchs who have been so from birth, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. He who is able to receive this, let him receive it.” (That’s what my “Revised Standard Version” translation says but the other translation avoids the word eunuch, which might have been a colloquialism not a literal…*shudders*. But the other translation says “some are incapable of marriage because they were born so; some, because they were made so by others; some, because they have renounced marriage for the sake of the kingdom of God. Whoever can accept this ought to accept it.” Anyway…eunuch…*wishes I hadn’t dictionaried that*).
      Anyway, another reason is that a priest’s first duty is to his parish while a husband’s first duty is to his wife. We believe the Apostles were the first priests and, of course, Peter was married but after he followed Christ the Greek word that references his wife (1 Corinthians 9:5) translates as “sister” instead implying that he gave up intercourse after following his priestly vocation. This is also referenced as a “better” (but not necessary) path in Matthew 19:29: “And every one who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife, or children or lands for My Name’s sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and shall possess life everlasting.” (On an side note, my translation cuts out ‘or wife’ but several others don’t…)
      The idea of either temporary or permanent vows of celibacy have a lot of precedent in the Church backing to the Old Testament where Levite priests had to abstain from sex on the days they served in the Temple. But every priest in the Catholic Church must celebrate at least one Mass every day. Eastern Orthodox Catholics only state that priests should abstain on Sunday and those who convert may be priests while still being married but cannot remarry, so there are some priests in the Roman Catholic Church that are married, but of these none have become bishops or deacons while their wife is still living or having sexual relationships with them. So, this is kinda shaky waters, but some my sources say the Church never proclaimed priest-celibacy to be dogma while others mention ecumenical counsels that touch on the subject. On THAT note it wasn’t until fairly recently that Mary’s Immaculate Conception was officially proclaimed canon although everyone already established that was the case since B.C. saints’ writings and it was only officially established probably in reference to a heresy that Jesus the Man was separate from Jesus the Second Person of the Holy Trinity. So…Pope Innocent XI talked about married people exercising more continence before receiving Communion frequently in ‘Cum ad aures’ like similar to David when eating the holy bread with his men in 1 Samual 21:2-6. But this isn’t mandatory, it’s more of a discipline like fasting for married people.
      St. Peter Damian pointed out about this “If Our Redeemer so loved the flower of unimpaired modesty that not only was He born from a virginal womb, but was also cared for by a virgin nurse even when He was still an infant crying in the cradle, by whom, I ask, does He wish His Body to be handled now that He reigns, limitless, in heaven?” So, another reason for celibacy is that priests, in celebrating the Mass, have to handle the Eucharist which we believe is the Real Presence of God much like the Ark of the Covenant (actually, I’ve heard that Christians believe the Eucharist is a symbol and not Jesus Himself, is that true?).
      From what I’ve been reading the Church interprets 1 Timothy, as I understand it, is that if a priest is already married then only one wife and if he has children they must be submissive and respectful in every way. I guess this applies to Eastern Orthodox or pastor converts or other special circumstances. I’m not entirely sure about this, but it’s seems like married people can become priests but unmarried priests shouldn’t marry. Even with that I can’t find a sure-fire answer to whether or not priest celibacy is even mandatory…? I don’t know there, I’m gonna try and ask a little more and see if I can’t confirm or deny that. But that said, predominately Catholic priests are celibate out of reverence for the sacredness of their duties and act as similar to heaven on earth like in Matthew 22:30; “For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven”

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