On Challenging Old Concepts and Catholic Guilt

I’m not sure if I’ve written about it over here yet, but I have this creative streak that seems to have turned into a business. I make incense and blended oils. I love what I do, and my house smells amazing!

That being said, with my line of blended oils, I’ve been known to do custom blends. These oils are used for aromatherapy or for wearing on the skin, so my requests may vary.

Yesterday I received what has to be the strangest request yet. I received a request for Holy Water.

“You have this ‘Cleansing Sage Mist’; I was wondering, can you make Holy Water?”

I was raised Catholic. I haven’t been to confession in over 30 years and I doubt the church would consider me as being Catholic now (I don’t), but the Catholic guilt never leaves you. The first thing that crossed my mind was, “Isn’t there someone a bit more qualified?” Followed by, “Won’t I go straight to Hell for making that, much less, selling it?”

Photo: "Shock" Kitty Parrish, Deviant Art
Photo: “Shock” Kitty Parrish, Deviant Art

Off to the Google I went and not only did I find a few recipes for Holy Water, I found there are different types of Holy Water. Most religions that use it follow the same basic recipe but they use a different blessing. The Catholic Church has three different types alone, for different occasions. The type we are most familiar with is the one they keep in the stoup, found as one enters the church. This is the basic recipe, made with distilled water and a bit of sea salt.

The blessing I found to be most interesting. Up until the Second Vatican Counsel (referred to as Vatican II), the church used the traditional Roman blessing to consecrate the water. This was a powerful and fascinating read. They actually performed an exorcism over the salt and the water, making it pure and “exorcising the evil” out of it. It was a lengthy ritual, of course.  Vatican II was 1959-1965. During that time they changed the blessing making it much shorter. It’s no longer an “exorcism” over the salt and water, but after reading the new version, IMO, it does seem to do its job.

I’d found the recipe and the blessing. I now had my moral dilemma. Sister Nora would sternly disapprove and would be highly disappointed. She would tell me I should not be so sacrilegious and I should go to confession immediately for even thinking of doing such a thing.

But Catholics don’t have the exclusive on Holy Water, and I’m not Catholic anymore. Besides, my label wouldn’t say, “Catholic Holy Water.” Another thing that crossed my mind; if this customer wanted Holy Water from the Catholic Church, she would have gone to a priest. In my research I confirmed they do still give that out to parishioners.

Anyone can say a prayer…

I went for it.

I went for it

 

Sister Nora, I’m sorry. When I was 7 years old, grasping the concepts of God, forgiveness, and following the right path, I asked you about people who weren’t Christian and said, “What if we’re wrong and one of them are right?” I know you probably gave me the answer you thought best at the time, but I needed something more than, “You shouldn’t be so sacrilegious.” I kept questioning as I got older and got to the point I believe all these different spiritual paths lead to the same Deity. There are just too many similarities in their beliefs to think otherwise.

So can anyone make Holy Water? Sure. Will the Catholic Church recognize it as such? No. But I believe in sanctification and I believe it is something any of us can do.

As for selling it? You know, I don’t feel right selling the water itself. I do have packaging involved so I have to put some kind of a price on it. If that means I’m going to Hell; well, at least I’ll be in good company. All my friends say they’ll be there and Mr. Magick Man says he already has the ice concession.

going to hell

Writing Challenge

What does a sunrise mean to you?

A sunrise is a moment to treasure. The city isn’t awake yet, but nature is and this is her hour.

I’m out in my garage every morning making incense. Daybreak is the coolest time of day where I live. Sunrise is my time to enjoy the quiet, sort through my thoughts and breathe. I’m always at peace by the time I’m done. Just as the sunrise signals a new day, I’m refreshed and ready to start anew as well.

What does a sunrise mean to me? Releasing the past and moving forward into a new day.

Sunrise at the Castle

The Saga Continues

I value my privacy. This is why I never used my real name on Flakebook. For a brief while, I actually thought Flakebook finally noticed I wasn’t using my real name and blocked my account; however, I looked around on my friends list and saw too many other users doing the same thing I was doing.

That couldn’t be the problem.

I created a new account under another pseudonym. I didn’t use a name one could possibly mistake for someone’s real name. Flakebook allowed me to create the account.

I started adding friends to this new account. I was up and running, commenting, and preparing to bring the old account to a close sometime next week, when I tried to create a page.

Yes, the same page I tried to create under the other account. The same page that started this whole mess in the first place.

I received the same error once but now I’m completely locked out of my new account.

I am officially done with Flakebook. They can rot.

 

He drives me crazy

The teenboy is learning how to drive. He’s taking his behind-the-wheel classes, but those do need to be reinforced with practice sessions. Unfortunately, those practice sessions involve me and my car. This brings to mind a song from the ’80’s by the Fine Young Cannibals. I always changed the gender when I sang this song. This morning, as I recall yesterday’s driving adventure, it’s running through my head:

He drives me crazy
Like no one else
He drives me crazy
And I can’t help myself

Really, I must say, for a beginning driver, the teenboy is doing an excellent job. But when we backed out of the driveway yesterday and he forgot to put the car into Drive, he did one of those “drive-it-like-you-stole-it” moves. He did a perfect horseshoe with my tight turning radius, putting the back two tires up on the curb.

This was the only time a scream passed through my lips. Unfortunately, it came with words that sounded something like “What the f*** are you doing?!?!?”

scream

 

He seemed to be just as panicked at the moment.

I then had to keep myself from laughing when he put the hazard lights on, safely pulled out in the direction we needed to go, then turned the hazards off. Do they teach that in Driver’s Ed now?

Mental note, he hasn’t made many mistakes but when he does they scare the bejeezus out of me. At least he only pulls stunts like that once, they scare the bejeezus out of him, too, and he learns from the experience. We’re able to get to our nearby destination, discuss what happened and he can tell me exactly what went wrong and what happened right before that to cause it.

So, what happened right before that to cause his distraction, making him forget to put the car into Drive?

Backing out of our driveway, everything was clear. However, he’s a new driver and he’s moving slow. A car started approaching from one direction. He got nervous. He had the “I-need-to-get-out-of-here” reaction. Unfortunately, he skipped a step. We talked about what happens when you panic behind the wheel and how bad that could have been if we were on a busy street vs. just outside our driveway. Lesson learned.

Bonus points:

  • He quickly recovered from said incident and made it to the busy grocery store without further issues.
  • He navigated the H.E.B. parking lot without hitting any pedestrians.
  • He parked the car perfectly!
  • Unshaken by the crazy people trying to find a parking space in the H.E.B. parking lot, he drove home.

We made it home. Alive.

I had a beer.

Flakebook

Ever try to reach anyone at Flakebook to resolve an issue? Oh, I’m sorry, I should probably refer to them by their appropriate name: Facebook. There, I said it. It’s the only time I’ll use it in this post.

Let me just cut to the chase for those who haven’t enjoyed this lovely experience — You can’t reach anyone in support at Flakebook, regardless of your issue.

Sit back, get some popcorn and something to drink. Duch is on a rant tonight.

Yesterday, I tried to create a business page off of my Flakebook account. I received error messages saying the action could not be completed and I would have to try later. After numerous attempts, I decided to report the problem to Flakebook, complete with screenshots. My error message:

It says to try later, so I try later… :: shrugs ::

I tried later, as instructed, and noticed I was now getting authentication prompts when clicking on “Get Started”. Knowing I’d reported this issue earlier (and noting I had yet to receive a response), I went through the motions again to capture screenshots so I could report this new behavior to Flakebook.

After the above error message I got this one:

Login screen after Get Started

Then this one:

Verify your Identity

Much to my dismay, after following the prompts to prove I was really me, I was informed my account was temporarily blocked for 30 days.

Temporarily Blocked

I was eventually able to log back into my account after multiple attempts but now I’m unable to comment or Like any posts, or send messages. I haven’t explored further features to see what else I cannot do. I did explore Flakebook’s Help section and found an Appeals link, but received an error when filling out the form. The error said my account was not disabled so the form did not apply.

Evidently there is no appeals process for this particular issue.

What exactly did I do here? Make multiple, unsuccessful attempts to create a Page, resulting in errors due to possible server issues on Flakebook’s part? Now I’m in “Flakebook Jail” for 30 days?

This hardly seems right.

Driver’s Ed

The Teenboy’s behind the wheel courses start this Monday. We reviewed the scheduled appointments this month for 3 of his 7 behind-the-wheel classes. The remaining sessions will occur after our trip to Dallas. Of course, he asked if he’ll get to drive part of the way to Dallas. I said no. His freeway classes aren’t until his 6th or 7th class.

“But mom, there might be a clear straight-a-way for a bit.”

“No.”

He’s so eager. I’m so nervous.

Maybe next trip.