Thursday, March 12, 2015

7QT But mom, You didn't do your Penance?

More Quick Takes at This Ain't the Lyceum  

1. Last week one of my children had first penance, parents had the opportunity to go up and have their confession heard. I went up. Usually I make an appointment and enjoy having 'the time'. I didn't, so I had to be concise. Also it was face to face, out in the open with chairs set up in different parts of the church/altar, but far away from everyone to have private communication.

2. My son almost forgot to do his penance, which was one Our Father. He knelt and did it. As we left, he asked why I didn't do my penance. I told him, my penance is different then your penance." He kept pestering me about me penance for days. I didn't divulge to him.

3. Without specifics my confession was about my frustrations in handling my children as a parent. I could handle my emotions a lot better. He told me that I should know what sets me off and step away. Of course I knew that, but yeah they've been pushing the boundaries of absolute obstinate behavior in particular areas of life.  They know I wont hit them or neglect them, I do remind them that stubborn children in need of assistance can go in front of a judge in Massachusetts.

After confessing my sins towards my children, the priest asked, "How's your relationship with your husband?" I responded "Wonderful!". The priest then gave me my penance, "Tonight right before you go to bed, give him a kiss on the cheek."

4. Real easy, you may think. Lame. Right? But we practice NFP and I was still in my fertile phase. If you are a woman who has a healthy relationship with her husband, a kiss on the cheek right before bed is sending a signal for sex. It's not like a kiss goodbye in the morning.

This priest (retired) knew what he was doing it.

Penance served. A few nights later.

5. Engaged parenting vs. accessible parenting?  

Lot's of caveats, but decades ago mothers didn't engage with their children with activities. For the most part, behaviorally kids were OK. This study is trying to understand the distinction.

"In 1965, American mothers spent an average of eight hours a week on paid work and 10 hours a week on child care. In 2011, they worked 21 hours a week—and spent 14 hours on child care. That is, even as they became much more likely to spend a significant amount of time at work, moms came to devote more time, not less, to their kids. "
 Good right? Well not. Apparently, it doesn't matter and possiblely being more engaged can create a problem?

6. My parents love me and they gave me a lot of opportunity, but we're not the most emotional people (we're kind of socially awkward distant for various reasons). My home was never that home where people just hang out, and your mom is like everyone's mom. I had older relatives who are like that. Their living room was everyone's living room, and that's where where adults and adolescents alike socialized.

I also have an older cousin, and she's EVERYONE'S GRANDMOTHER. I think she has about ten biological grandchildren, but about 30 people reference her as their Meme on Facebook.  My husband's grandmother, who is now in her mid-90s was that type of person of well. She never have awesome birthday parties or planned events, but you can always count on a lemon meringue or blueberry pie in the kitchen if you stopped by.

What has been your best penance?
Because Sacraments are suppose to be gifts of grace.

And what type of penance would a priest give the Pope?


  1. I've wondered that before about the Pope....

    For my first confession (made as an adult) I remember writing a letter for a former teacher of mine apologizing for making her life... difficult.

  2. That is an awesome penance. I wouldn't have told my child either. Praying the Jesus prayer is one of the best ones I've gotten.

  3. I once got 250 Hail Mary's, which I was allowed to say 20 a night. It was for getting married in Las Vegas (I was shipping out for Viet-nam). 1 June 1966. Performed the Sacrament of Matrimony in late January 1967 in an barely lit chapel on MacDill AFB (Tampa, FL) with the two of us, a Priest and a Chaplain Assistant one morning and then rushed home and met the movers who were packing our stuff to move to Germany. It was check the box rather than romantic. My wife, then a Methodist, was a widow, so it wasn't her first wedding. Or, for her, the second, in Lost Wages. Young an in a hurry.

    Regards -- Cliff

    1. 250 Hail Marys isn't bad, but considering the context not sure if that was even a sin.

      Play it safe, just confess and let the priest sort it out. That's what they are trained to do.

    2. 250 Hail Marys isn't bad, but considering the context not sure if that was even a sin.

      Play it safe, just confess and let the priest sort it out. That's what they are trained to do.