A New Pope…Sunshine And Blue Skies

Isn’t it amazing how a little sunshine and blue skies can make even a cold Michigan day bearable?  Although it’s only 39 degrees here and it is absolutely “chilly” when you walk outside, the pretty blue sky and bright sunshine dull that little chill.

We have a new Pope…Pope Francis I.

Pope Francis

I am so excited about the possibilities of what changes Pope Francis I may bring to the catholic church.  I can honestly say that I know more people who have either pulled away from the church entirely OR have started attending non-denominational churches because they feel the catholic church has not evolved, that some of the interpretations of the bible are inaccurate.

I am also excited that he took the name Francis.  St. Francis Assisi is one of my favorite saints, I pray to him often, especially in time of confusion and when in need of guidance.  Perhaps part of my draw toward St. Francis is due to his love of nature.

Although I still long for the past, yes I would love mass to be said in Latin, I do think the church needs to take some serious, major steps toward moving the church into this century with regard to baptism, divorce, gays and allowing priests to marry.  There are many other things, those are just a few that are front and center for me.

I hang on because I can’t seem to let go of my faith, I was brought up to believe that if I left the catholic church for another denomination I could not return…God love those Franciscan nuns!!  Don’t get me wrong, I have ventured out, Nikki’s high school sweetheart, a young man named Steve (who I still love like one of my own) is Lutheran.  Steve’s brother-in-law is a minister in the Lutheran church and many, many years ago I attended a couple of services with Nikki and Steve and I loved it.  The only thing that kept me from jumping ship and joining Steve’s family’s church was guilt (yes those nuns!) and Father Fred.  I first met Father Fred when I was 17, he was young and brought new ideas to our little Polish parish and at first I wasn’t a fan.  Over the years maturity and friendship took over,  I had come to love Father Fred and had just found out that Father Fred was a Pastor at the Church right next door to Steve’s and I had been attending mass there for some time so I didn’t want to leave a church and familiar face that brought me comfort shortly after my divorce.

I have also been invited to attend Sunday services with friends who attended non-denominational services.  I came close several times to attending however….thank you Sister’s Clare, Carmel, Judith, Hermina, Julia, Anita and all the rest of the Sisters who left me with visions of damnation with the earth opening up and swallowing my catholic self right to the fires of hell should I attempted to enter a non-denominational church.

Hell

Yes….it sticks with you that long….I was in my late 40’s when I thought about going to a non-denominational service.

But yesterday brought hope….I want my faith to go back to teaching about forgiveness and acceptance, not about judgement and alienation of those who are different than me.  I want it to be about gathering to worship and study scripture, not about how many people are not tithing their share.  When I hear from the pulpit we are all children of God, I want that to be a way of life, not merely words.  I am looking foward to seeing where Pope Francis I leads us.

Since fish is on our menu most Friday’s in lent, I thought I would leave you with a recipe for homemade tartar sauce.  We LOVE tartar sauce, even with our fries when we have fish and chips!!  This makes 2 cups of tartar sauce so if you know you don’t need that much you can cut it in half.  Unless you are going to use all of the tartar sauce within a few days, I’d only make half.  Also, there are a lot of capers in a small jar, the capers will keep in the refrigerator up to three months.   ENJOY!!

TARTAR SAUCE

Home Made Tartar Sauce

What You’ll Need:

1 cup       Mayonnaise
1/3 cup   Sweet pickle relish
1 tbsp.    Minced capers
1              Hard-cooked egg, chopped
1 dash    Worcestershire sauce
1 dash    Hot pepper sauce

salt and white pepper to taste

Directions:

  • In a small bowl, mix together mayonnaise, sweet pickle relish, capers, and egg.
  • Season to taste with salt and white pepper
  • Add a dash of Worcestershire sauce and a dash hot pepper sauce
  • Stir
  • Chill
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