Friday, May 2, 2008

Wherein I Very Uncharacteristically Thank a Saint

10 days ago, and I don't quite remember how I thought to do this, I decided to pray a novena to St. Jude. Vatican II came to Elyria, Ohio when I was 4th grade. Up until then CCD class was like regular school--you sat at desks and raised your hand when you wanted to answer a question. CCD was better than regular school in that you could win stuff just for memorizing things. I'm freakishly RainManlike when it comes to memorizing. I acquired a nice cache of holy cards and medals.

Then my Mom moved me from St. Mary's to Sacred Heart (you know: The Church That Won't Baptise My Baby). No more desks--we all sat in a circle on the floor and talked about "feelings." No more holy cards or medals--and definitely no learning how to say a novena or a rosary or anything even remotely traditional or interesting like that.

So I went online and found a St. Jude Novena site. Of course there's a St. Jude novena site. I printed out their handy form for keeping track of my devotions and set forth on the nine day "program."

I won't go into detail but suffice it to say I took this drastic measure because I simply could not handle the level of worry that was building up in me. It felt like a huge knot of threads--I'd try to untangle one but it would only tighten another. I did'nt want miracles I just wanted some freakin' Peace of Mind. Enough that I could get the day to day stuff done. Enough to stop spiraling out of control. So I prayed a novena and, oddly, I think it worked. No miracles, no rays of light emanating from my head, but I did calm down.

The St. Jude Novena apparently is very old but really took hold in the Chicago area in the late 1800s/early 1900s. One of the more charming 19th century aspects of the Novena is that, after you complete it, you are supposed to make a public statement about it. The traditional way is to take out an add in the newspaper thanking St. Jude. Not knowing which newspapers he subscribes to these days, I figure I'll give him a shout out on the ol' Blogski: Dear Patron Saint of the Hopeless--thanks for calming me down. It really helped me get my life back on track. Here's hoping I won't be bothering you again any time soon but its good to know you're out there.

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