Beyond Frustration

Frustrated – feeling exasperated, discouraged, or unsatisfied
The above definition is what I found in Microsoft Word’s dictionary.  Synonyms include:  aggravated, irritated, upset, disturbed, annoyed, bothered.  None of these come close to how I feel as a Catholic these days.  I actually found myself feeling angry rather than consoled when I read the Prayer for Frustrated Catholics published yesterday by Fr. James Martin, S.J., who I admire.  His words apparently hit a nerve.  I’m way beyond frustrated!

Despair – a profound feeling that there is no hope
I think this is the word for my feelings about the institutional Catholic Church.  Synonyms are misery, desolation, gloom, despondency.  It feels like the Church has left me; I don’t recognize it anymore.  I am heartbroken by the maligning of women religious and depressed about the new Missal.   I seriously question how I can continue in such an organization, though leaving is a painful prospect too.

Determined – feeling or showing firmness or a fixed purpose
My faith in God remains strong; in fact, it is perhaps stronger than ever.  Shifting dynamics within the Church have prompted more personal exploration into history, scripture and prayer, brought new, grounding resources, and reinforced commitment.  I do not know where I am going in relation to the Church, but I will always be a Catholic.  Synonyms for “determined” are resolute, gritty, unwavering, and firm.

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13 Responses to Beyond Frustration

  1. Liz Keuffer says:

    Great post. I appreciate your being so honest about your feelings.

  2. Sheila Dierks says:

    hi Peg, might now be the time to change/amend the blog to Beyond Frustration, or Sense of Frustration? or how about Faithful Frustration?

  3. Vicki Garry says:

    I feel the same way, Peg! It goes beyond frustration. I keep on asking what am I supposed to do in response to the assault on our sisters and the new Missal that sounds so awkward. I am sure the Spirit will give me sound counsel when she’s ready. I just wish She would advise me sooner rather than later. Patience is not one of my virtues! But I am hanging in ther for now, but it’s not easy!

  4. Mary-Cabrini Durkin says:

    Peg, when my eyes are focused on the Vatican, I share your feelings. When I look at the LCWR leaders, at Network, and at other sisters, I see the effect of gusty (and gutsy) Spirit-wind. LCWR models the courage to stand in one’s own dignity, not within an imposed (un)reality. LCWR leaders bear witness to staying in dialogue, but insisting on truth. Meanwhile, Network is executing a stroke of brilliance: a bus trip highlighting human needs that would be exacerbated by Congressman Ryan’s proposed budget (which the US bishops have criticized). The Network itinerary will highlight sites where sisters are doing Gospel work. That will be something to keep an eye on. I bet our hearts will be lifted, too. That’s church!

  5. Diane says:

    Boy, I would be interested in a conversation with you ladies! I became so frustrated I stopped attending. But I think my issues are bigger than just the Catholic Church. I miss having time for community devotion.

  6. osjradioshow says:

    I appreciate your honesty and sharing, Peg. As you know, i have been on a similar journey. As of today, I am closer to God than I have ever been and my love and belief in Jesus is stronger than ever too. But, to get here, I had to examine my feelings, read, talk with others, reflect, meditate, and on and on. This is what you are doing. The end result? Wherever you end up, it will be worth it. I guarantee it! Let me know if you ever want to brainstorm/share ideas and feelings in person. Thanks for this great blog post! Cynthia Day

  7. This post sums up so much of what I love about your writing and its honesty. Don’t know if you’ve ever gotten one of these “Versatile Blogger” awards, but I passed one your way today:

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