Friends, I need your help!

 But first let me give you the skinny on why.

Basically how I run… if we’re being honest.

You see, I’ve signed up to do my first ever 5K this Saturday the 29th, and it’s going to be a color run (you know, where they spray you with colored cornstarch until it appears you’ve had an unfortunate tie-dyeing accident). But, one of the main reasons I’m participating is to run in conjunction with the Office of  Vocations at the Archdiocese of Denver. They are doing a prayer campaign for vocations that will include this color run as one of its approved races. So instead of me asking everyone I know for the the typical financial pledge; I’m asking for you to pledge prayers for an increase in vocations to the priesthood and religious life. I’m humbly requesting that you might take a couple seconds to go here, where you will find an option to choose my name (Kim Vandapool) as the runner you are supporting and then pledge away!

And I also want to let you know that I’m a terrible runner and even a mere 5K will be a challenge for me to complete. And it’s not for a lack of training or putting in the time. I’ve always had difficulty with running because I seem to have some sort of undiagnosed exercise-induced asthma or something. It’s not that I’m not athletic – I love to hike, play tennis, swim, and lift weights – but my body just doesn’t much love to run long distances. So even a prayer that I finish this race would be greatly appreciated. But I won’t push my luck.

Here’s what I’ll be doing in the name of vocations (God help me!):

So please, please, please, please, PRETTY PLEASE! Will you help make this run worth getting pelted by cornstarch among a thousand crazy people (some of whom may very well be on bath salts) on a crisp fall morning?? Please!

Thank you very much for your kind consideration,

Kim

3½ Time-Outs Tuesday: The Instagram Edition

I’m curious to know what your 3½ Time-Outs are this week, and so is Larry D over at Acts of The Apostasy. So please come up with something – anything, and then post it for the rest of us to see!

–1–

I’m one of those people who uses Instagram routinely (though I forgo the photo-sharing, social media aspect of the app). Why? Because I realized a long time ago that unless I had a really nice camera and an understanding of how to use it, most of the pictures I take just aren’t that good. They never capture the moment as I recall it in my mind, anyway.

Until Instagram.

Whenever I use an Instagram filter on one of my pics, the result is sentimental. Every. Time. Sentimental! Like take these for example:

–2–

And sometimes I’ll even take older photos that I really like, but that don’t seem quite sentimental-looking enough, and I’ll put a filter on them too. And the result… you guessed it. So SENTIMENTAL!!

–3–

Instagram even makes completely random crap look totally sentimental. Like take this group of acorns:

BAM! Sentimental.

Or this poor old, lonely flip flop:

Awww, gotta have some sort of sentimental value…

Yep, that’s right. This lint roller is precious to me. You might even call it sentimental.

–3½–

But it’s true; there are images in this world that actually can’t be made sentimental – even by the likes of Instagram. Such as:

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Yep… I made you scroll for this.

The Church Does Not Need To Come Around

Some day the Church will come around.

I hear this wishful thinking all the time. Doesn’t every person take issue with one or more teachings of the Catholic Church – believing she is in error and must someday reverse or evolve on those faulty teachings? Perhaps not all people are like this, but many are. And for sure, many Catholics are. These days it’s usually when we’re talking about her more polarizing teachings – those regarding same-sex marriage, contraception, female clergy, capital punishment, etc. – that you most often hear the old “oh, don’t worry, she’ll come around” mantra.

But you see, she won’t.

It can be most tempting for us, as humans, to believe that we see truth and recognize it as such merely due to our ability to reason and intuit. But the reality is that there are billions of people currently seeing billions of different truths in the world. More specifically, there are millions of Christians reading the same (or nearly the same) Bible and drawing different conclusions – forming different doctrines. Here in America (and other places too, but most notably here) we have the Christian cafeteria where one can simply look around at all the Christian denominations and then pick one that most lines up with their own current set of beliefs, or truths, if you will. But then, once said denomination has strayed a bit from that original ideal, one must either fracture the denomination to form a more precise faith group, or start over with the search for the Christian community most in line with “the truth”. It can be exhausting and discouraging.

Before we converted and entered the Catholic Church, the search for truth resembled this pattern in many ways, although at some point we made the logical connection that the Church of the Bible was not a democratic one, and therefore could not line up with every one of our opinions – let alone all the opinions of everyone else. I soon realized that the fact that I did not see eye to eye with the Church on every issue was a very good thing. Why? Because it meant that I was not the arbiter of truth. I am not God. And according to Isaiah 55:8, God’s thoughts are not my thoughts and neither are his ways my ways.

And indeed, over time I came to understand the Church’s teachings on so many tough issues when I simply dropped my guard and humbled myself. I am a student. A child. A sheep. How could I presume to know better than the Shepherd? Well, I suppose I could say that Jesus (the Shepherd) and I have a special, personal relationship, where he tells me things that only I understand correctly. Right, that sounds very biblical. Especially given that Jesus specifically asked Peter, the first pope, to feed and tend his sheep (Jn 21:15-17) for him. Jesus shepherds us vicariously. Thus we a have a Vicar of Christ for the teaching of faith and morals.

But wait, you say, couldn’t anyone say about their own denomination that there is dissent from doctrine; so by that standard it must be the unwavering Church that Christ founded as well? Well, no. Not for that reason alone. The very structure of the Catholic Church, along with her historical connection to the first century, is equally important. Truth must come from the top (Jesus) down. The Church is necessarily hierarchical. Doctrine cannot be formulated by the masses and then be enshrined for the time being as truth – only to be reevaluated once the sensibilities of the masses change.

Source: CatholicMemes.com

Those teachings of the Church that I am still having trouble understanding – in light of my own sense of justice, fairness, laziness, or what have you – are exactly what give me faith and peace in knowing that the Church is unchanging. She will not acquiesce to me or anyone else for the sake of being popular or evolving to fit the times. She will not be informed by human greed nor weakness. She will not bow down to anyone but her king, Jesus. The Catholic Church will not change, because God does not change (Mal 3:6).