3.19.2014

7 Qualities She Wants in a Catholic Man

Whenever I say “she” I mean “me”. So it should actually be titled “7 Qualities She Wants in a Catholic Man - According to Zoë”. Although, I know that some of them do pertain to those girls who value Catholicism, God and respect in general. Others that I may list are my own preferences; so don’t take them too seriously.

The reason I’m doing this topic is because James Sama posted one called 7 Qualities She Wants in a Man, and while these aren’t wrong in any way I just found it would be quite entertaining if I made my own, but a Catholic version. Pretty much all of the qualities he stated are super important and will blend together with the qualities I will state (and most of the qualities I will state blend in together with each other.)

*Note: They are not in any particular order!*

    Reverent 
- feeling or showing deep and solemn respect. The most attractive thing (to me) is one who is reverent to Jesus Christ who is fully present in the Eucharist.

 I want to share a funny story on just how taken I am with one who is reverent. I will not state who, when, where, what the full occasion was - anything. But it's funny and embarrassing so I thought to share it. I was in Adoration and the way the Monstrance was placed was by the back wall and to exit you had to walk past Him. Well, I was kneeling down, praying fervently in the presence of the Eucharist and this guy enters into my sight because he was leaving and before he left he took one good look at Jesus and put his hand to his heart. At this time, (I was looking of course) I was completely taken back by this simple, beautiful, loving action that I'm pretty sure my jaw dropped . I say I'm pretty sure because I don't remember if I did that or not, but I'm sort of convinced I did because I realized he was looking at me and I closed my mouth, but I never remembered opening it. It's sort of embarrassing but I can't stop laughing at the situation. What a beautiful, humiliating situation to be in! 

    Humble
- having or showing a modest or lost estimate of one's own importance. 

Humility is such a pertinent virtue and without humility (like love) the other virtues become meaningless. So it's very important to me that my husband will have humility and also have humility as to teach how me to become more humble. 



    Joyful
- feeling, expressing, or causing great pleasure and happiness. I wish for him to "act in such a way that all those who come in contact with {him} will go away joyful . . . . {that he will} go through life like a little child, always trusting, always full of simplicity and humility, content with everything, happy in every circumstance. There, where others fear, {he} will pass calmly along, thanks to this simplicity and humility."(St. Faustina Kowalska)

•    Intelligent
- having or showing intelligence. (I just learned about this in Psychology.) Intelligence is the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills. I want him to be intelligent in the Catholic Faith, where he can apply the thing that the Bible and Catechism teach us to do in our daily life.

    Selfless
- concerned more with the needs and wishes of others than with one's own. This is one that I struggle with a lot. Everything in me wishes to be selfless but I continue to fail all throughout the day; however, God's mercy overcomes m lack of selflessness. I desire this so that, again, I may continually learn from the selfless acts. Considering to be married to another is a huge act of sacrifice and selflessness. But I'm still growing and always will. 

What a beautiful husband and father would he be to exemplify selflessness!

    Devoted
- very loving or loyal. I wish him to be devoted not only to me, but to God and His Church as well. 

    Passionate
- showing or caused by strong feelings or a strong belief. To have passion for the Catholic Church means to me that you are pumped to be able to live out this beautiful way of life. To have passion you must have wonder and awe, and there is so much wonder and awe in this Catholic Faith that I need someone to be just as pumped up and even more so than I am! I love the the Celebration of the Mass - I need someone who loves this Sacrament. I love praying - I need someone who loves to pray also, and so forth…

Bonus - Fair Dancer

-I love to dance. Now, I never said I was good but if you have an exceptional dance partner then it's
really hard to be bad. Even to just have fun with dancing is a plus! I could honestly care less if we look 
like penguins, I enjoy it and it would be pretty cool if he did too.

Bonus - Humorous but equally Earnest
- Let's just face it, I laugh all the time. When I'm happy, I laugh. When I'm annoyed, I laugh. When I'm frustrated, I laugh. But I need someone who can make me laugh because they are simply funny in their nature. Even if it's the cheesiest thing, I'll laugh - because it's cheesy. Which here a few pictures that are cheesy and one honestly funny. . . (sorry for all the Ryan Gosling.)

These are simply for those who find humor in such things: (I do)












I could keep on going and get materialistic but this pretty much sums up virtuous qualities I look for in a Catholic guy. The bonuses are for my purposes only but other than that the other qualities are generally what I want in all men who have such a beautiful faith before them (and also for us women). Of course, these are pretty essential to me to have in a husband (if God wills) but these are also just nice to have in any guy who befriends someone.

But most importantly, I desire in a man just this one thing, and I feel like if he is simply striving for this than all the rest of my desires are found in this quality: That he loves God before all, and yes that means me included. I do not want to be first on who/what my husband values, rather I want Christ to be.

I have come to understand that if he puts God above all other things then he will be more in union with God’s will for himself and also his family. I am not losing anything if he loves God above myself; rather I’m gaining a husband who seeks holiness for his soul and that of his wife and children. And the same goes for me. It's been said multiply times that the most fruitful way to obtain what you desire in a spouse is to maintain those same qualities. 





-Now I want to reflect a little bit on the Sacrament of Marriage-



The Sacrament of Marriage is just as much of a vocation as Religious life and Single life. It’s a vocation to which He calls us to follow Him and to do His will. Holiness is not exempt in this vocation.

I know that some don’t consider marriage much of a Sacrament, because I know I didn’t until this year. Marriage is something so sacred and beautiful and just like all things sacred we somehow twist it into something that it’s not intended to be.

But I’ve learned a lot from my ignorance and I thank God that I did. The Sacrament of Marriage is such a beautiful vocation that we can so easily take for granted because of sin.

BUT… The good news is:


Marriage is intended to reflect the love of the Trinity and the unfailing love God has for us. When you are married you become ONE with your spouse the same as the Trinity is ONE. When you marry you are saying (from the action of the sacrifice of oneself to another) that you are open to partake in the divine mystery of love, which brings forth new life. Just like how the Holy Spirit PROCEEDS from the Father and Son, out of perfect love. It is a sign of God’s love for us by giving yourself until “to death do us part”, resembling the eternal love of God.

“God who created man out of love also calls him to love the fundamental and innate vocation of every human being. For man is created in the image and likeness of God who is himself love. Since God created him man and woman, their mutual love becomes an image of absolute and unfailing love with which God loves man. It is good, very good, in the Creator’s eyes. And this love which God blesses is intended to be fruitful and to be realized in the common work of watching over creation: ‘And God blessed them, and God said to them: Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it.’” CCC 1604

Marriage, like any vocation, comes with sacrifices and daily challenges. I reflected on the act of sacrifice in The Struggle and all that I stated deals with every vocation, and with it are varying sacrifices accordingly.

I’m not writing this because I’m married or have even come close to being married, rather I’m writing about it because I have finally started to discern if God is calling me to marriage through being a wife and mother. I’ve opened up my will to the possibility that God may be calling me to this Sacrament and I can honestly say I have not been more free. I’m no longer sulking in the idea of not being a sister, but rather I will be able to respond to the call with a willing and faithful ‘yes!’ (Whenever He wills and to whichever He wills).

Certainly God will provide for me the graces I need to obtain a holy and fruitful marriage if that’s my calling. I can’t cook much, clean accurately or even know how to deal with men but I will learn! I will also learn in a convent, so either way, I have a lot of learning and experiencing to do.  

From Christ comes graces upon graces and that’s why I find it so vital that my future husband will put Christ before all, so that from our marriage we may be able to be strengthened by graces to produce a holy and beautiful vocation. Surely we will not be perfect but in faith, we will strive to overcome the difficulties in ways that will lead us closer to Christ and each other.

Jackie and Bobby Angel on their wedding day.
They were  recently married and are now expecting their first child.
They are a beautiful example of a holy marriage founded in Christ.


So with the little said, I want to commend St. Joseph. I’ve been praying a novena to him and I’ve come to realize just how beautiful this saint is. I’ve never thought a lot about St. Joseph but he is most definitely growing on me, and quickly at that. I just want to share a quick snippet from one of Pope Francis’ homilies, which was said on his inauguration (a year a go to this day).


He said: “How does Joseph respond to his calling to be the protector of Mary, Jesus and the Church? By being constantly attentive to God, open to the signs of God’s presence and receptive to God’s plans, and not simply to his own. This is what God asked of David, as we heard in the first reading. God does not want a house built by men, but faithfulness to his word, to his plan. It is God himself who builds the house, but from living stones sealed by his Spirit. Joseph is a “protector” because he is able to hear God’s voice and be guided by his will; and for this reason he is all the more sensitive to the persons entrusted to his safekeeping. He can look at things realistically, he is in touch with his surroundings, he can make truly wise decisions. In him, dear friends, we learn how to respond to God’s call, readily and willingly, but we also see the core of the Christian vocation, which is Christ! Let us protect Christ in our lives, so that we can protect others, so that we can protect creation!”


With that being said, let us all protect those whom God entrusts to us and to His Holy Church, which brings forth the Sacrament of Marriage. Let us never tire of defending the Sacraments continually and faithfully unto which God has given us.




May God bless and Mary protect.



“Father, you entrusted our Savior to the care of Saint Joseph.
by the help of his prayers
may your Church continue to serve its Lord, Jesus Christ,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever."
Amen.
+JMJ.M+




“For you have said: love is built to last for ever, 
you have fixed your constancy firm in the heavens.”
 - Psalm 89:2





3.06.2014

The Struggle

"Suffering is a great favor. Remember that everything soon comes to an end. . . 
and take courage. Think of how our gain is eternal." 
                                                    St. Teresa of Avila
It's no surprise to every human being that there have been, is and will be struggles connected with this life. No one can magically become exempt from suffering. So it's real and it's everywhere. We know, we go through it and we see it.

Let's take a moment and realize that suffering is not bad in ways that we assume it to be. Sufferings can be offered up as sacrifice. Sacrifice can be offered up to God, because of His Son who paid the ultimate sacrifice. How beautiful it is that we are able to suffer, but suffer with meaning and suffering as to gain. Jesus did not come to suffer so that we may never know pain or spiritual drought on this earth, rather He came to show us how to suffer and for Whom. Yes - Jesus did come to defeat death and sin so that on this earth we may come to know, love and serve Our God and having within it eternal gain for all who seek Him. He came so that we may not suffer eternally the fires of hell. He came so that Scripture may be fulfilled with all scriptural prophesies. He came so that we may have hope once more. He came so that we may be able to know Love and to love Love in an extremely personal way.



It's okay to suffer! Get this - it's even acceptable to desire to suffer. Sooooooo many saints have stated how much suffering (for Christ) benefits one soul and even thousands of souls if you offer it up.

These are just  quotes from some beautiful saints on suffering:

-"I desire to suffer always and not to die. I should add: this is not my will, it is my inclination. It is sweet to think of Jesus; but it is sweeter to do His will."
- Bl. Mary of Jesus Crucified

-"If God sends you many sufferings, it is a sign that He has great plans for you and certainly wants to make you a saint."
- St. Ignatius Loyola

-"Blessed be he, Who came into the world for no other purpose than to suffer."
- St. Teresa of Avila

-"For Jesus Christ I am prepared to suffer still more."
- St. Maximilian Kolbe

-"If you really want to love Jesus, first learn to suffer, because suffering teaches you to love."
- St. Gemma Galgani

There are many more beautiful things said about suffering, but just with these that I have provided, I really ask that you take the time and come to try to understand where these people are coming from. All of these quotes are so powerful and I wish I could come to fully understand what is meant by all (God willing).

Some may come to ask, why do we have to suffer to love or even love to suffer? First, you don't have to do any of these things. It's a choice given to you to make. When you come to understand what love is, then you will know that the ultimate act of love was that act where Jesus hung there, sinless, for our sake. For Zoë's sins, He was crucified, so that Zoë may be able to live with Him in His Father's Kingdom. He died so that we may have life with Him! He suffered so that we may take courage and not to give up, to know that with suffering comes gain in ways unimaginable. That sacrifice is the epitome of love, and if that isn't LOVE then I honestly can't tell you why I stayed up past 4 am to write poorly about this topic.

Suffering for the sake of other's and for the sake of a greater cause can only indicate that you love what you are suffering for. That you are willing to sacrifice your Saturday night to drive your daughter to her friend's house, that you are willing to answer your best friends phone call at 1 am, that you are willing to stick with your husband who just got diagnosed with alzheimers, that you are willing to feed your cat when you really just don't feel like it, that you are willing to go visit your elderly grandma, that you are willing to play a game with your brothers. . . all indicate that you are willing to do another's will besides your own whenever your comfort is being compromised. Even if it's the smallest thing you could possibly do - it all pays tribute to the sacrifice jar (equally or even more so than the "big" sacrifices).

Getting on a personal level here, I have come to greatly appreciate suffering and came to a realization that without suffering I would not be where I am today and know what I've come to gain in knowledge this moment. Sometimes I even yearn for those moments where I can lift up all my sufferings to Christ so that I may be able to offer it up for an even greater cause. Not that I don't enjoy those times where I feel like I'm on cloud 14, I thank God for those times of pure bliss as much as I thank Him for those times where I suffer. I've stated before that suffering doesn't last forever so thank God that He is giving you moments to grow in ways uniquely offered by suffering. Now a lot of times when I am suffering it's hard to think of the bigger picture and not to sulk in my suckiness because I'm not perfect and I don't have this suffering thing completely figured out. I'm just sharing what I've experienced so far.

It's not easy!
"Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'If anyone wants to be a follower of mine, let him renounce himself and take up his cross and follow me. Anyone who wants to save his life will lose it; but anyone who loses his life for my sake will find it.'"
 (Matthew 16:24-25)

In the words of an infamous rap I once wrote, "No He never said it's gunna be easy, rather He said you gotta loose your life and then see what I see." (If you want to experience the full blown Z-masta then you have to ask in person. I only perform on Holy Days of Obligation.)

Anything worth doing will be difficult. That's just a matter of fact and suffering for Christ is most definitely worth doing. Suffering in it's form does not scream out "HEY, COME WITH ME, I'M PLEASURABLE." Like I've stated above, some people assume that suffering is a bad thing. If people even thought of suffering as unpleasant then why would we not think of this love, this sacrifice, to be  ultimately difficult?

BUT. . .
Even though it isn't easy, we are promised eternal gain. Take courage! Holiness is not capable of supporting sadness. We have the opportunity to take all that's hard and all that's difficult and give it to the One who can make that into something even more. Do not become saddened. I cannot say enough times that even though it's not easy DOESN'T MEAN IT'S NOT WORTH IT. Be joyful that you (me), of such sinfulness, can contribute to eternal acts by means of suffering.

There is no sadness in holiness! - Papa Frankie

Be joyful brothers and sisters, for we have a reason to hope, to love, and to have faith in all of our suffering - look towards our Crucified Lord, the perfect example of suffering made glorious.



God bless and Mary protect.



OFFER IT UP! :D


"Dear heavenly Father, praise be given to your holy name for your forbearance and mercy.
 You have dealt gently with your children in love. 
You have been patient with me in my humanness and stubbornness.
 Lord, through the work of your Spirit, 
prompt me to be more jubilant in hope,
 more patient in times of trouble, 
and more consistent in my prayer life. 
Teach me, Lord, to wait with faith and expectancy, 
and may my trials be seen as times for growth in grace. 
Through Christ our Lord, I pray."
Amen
+JMJ.T+



"We also rejoice in our sufferings, 
because we know that suffering produces perseverance;
 perseverance, character; 
and character, hope."
- Romans 5:3-4


^Relevant song, I must say.^