A joyfully Franciscan view of Catholic life, inspired by St. Clare (Santa Chiara) of Assisi!

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Location: Virginia, United States

Chiara Offreduccio (St. Clare) was born in 1194. It is said that when her mother had Chiara in her womb, an angel appeared to her and said, "your child will be a light that will illuminate the world!" Hence, her mother named the child Chiara, which means "light. As G.K. Chesterton put it, St. Clare was a romantic figure just like Juliet was. However, instead of running away from her family in order to be with an earthly man, Clare gave up everything and ran away from her family for the love of her Savior!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

A Public Confession

Dear friends of “Canticle of Chiara,”

I actually wasn’t going to make any more posts until I received a beautifully written e-mail from a dedicated reader of this blog. Well, this person’s e-mail made me come to my senses. Thus, just as the Poor Clares make public confessions before their communities, I’ll make a confession before my own community on this blog.

You might remember a post a while back that talked about the “Eleventh Commandment”- don’t compare yourself with others. I’ve continuously broken this commandment by means of matching up my “Canticle of Chiara” blogs to the success of some other Catholic blogs. I watched in envy as some people that I knew started up blogs and three weeks later, the blog would be spotlighted in “Our Sunday Visitor” or some other national Catholic publication. I would check the rankings of St. Blogs Parish every day, and subsequently became discouraged when I perceived how little attention “Canticle of Chiara” received. Finally, I became so discouraged when I felt that “Canticle of Chiara” had gotten little publicity in the wake of the recent Feast of St. Clare that I was determined to stop posting for an indefinite period of time. Honestly, St. Clare herself would most likely slap me for having these sentiments! I ask you all to forgive me.

After I received the aforementioned e-mail, I realized that running this blog could be compared to nuns in a monastery. Indeed, nuns have a certain amount of people whom they are able to meet in person and keep in regular contact with- just like those of you who leave comments and e-mail me. However, in most cases nuns spend their entire lives doing prayer and penance for those whom they will never see. The nuns may never receive a definitive sign that their prayers for people in the world may be answered- they’ll never know for sure whether a certain person has been converted to Christ, and even if that person does indeed convert, the nuns will never receive news of it. Nonetheless, this lack of absolute assurance in no way renders futile everything that the nuns do for others - somehow the nuns have faith that God in His Providence will hear and answer the prayers. Likewise, there are so many people out there that I will never realize are looking at my blog. From now on, even if there’s only one person who benefits from reading my posts, that’s all the motivation I’ll need to keep “Canticle of Chiara” going. After all, even if there had been just one person on earth, Jesus still would have died for that person.

In closing, I’m deeply sorry for not having my priorities straight. I look forward to continuing “Canticle of Chiara”!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Praise God! I always look foward to your new entries, and i'm so glad to hear that you will continue to write! Your site gives me great joy and God bless you for it!

7:39 PM  
Blogger Kelly Joyce Neff said...

Chiara!! GOD BLESS YOU for this wonderful, beautiful posting! You have no IDEA how much you are loved, and how important your blog is to us, even if it may not be said every day. We look for changes, look forward to them, every day.

Your beautiful openness and humility here, in this 'chapter' of those who read this blog, is truly worthy of a Poor Clare.

You are so greatly loved.
Thank you and may God bless you.

10:23 PM  
Blogger friar minor said...

Dear Chiara,

Your post really touches my heart; it's your docility to the Spirit and your acceptance of the spiritual struggles your ministry here offers you.

Your comparison of the blogosphere to a community of sisters is quite apt; in fact, God is permitting you the standard spiritual struggles (and opportunities!) of the religious life through your blogging!

Your vocation is so honored by God!


8:46 AM  
Blogger Crescentius said...

My dear sister:

I for one enjoy your posts. Please keep them up and my God continue to show you the lessons of life.


3:14 PM  
Blogger Brother Lesser said...

Thank you for this wonderful posting. You don't know how much I look forward to checking in with you every day, little sister.

I know how you feel. When our blog was started, we thought that God would surely bless our ministry by our begging alms through it. That has not happened.

But...we prayed about it and came to the realization that whatever we do, God will bless us in his own wonderful way, and we don't even need to know what those blessings are! We must simply be obedient...and full of joy!

Please keep posting because you bring us joy!

9:24 AM  
Blogger Therese_Rose_Morning said...

I'm glad you are going to keep on posting, because I just just just found this blog today, and I have really enjoyed going through it!

In fact, I'll share a secret. . .

My very close and much beloved sister just entered the Norbertine Sisters in Tehachapi, CA last Saturday, and though I am sooo incredibly happy for her, I loved her so much and I miss her horribly. I felt so bad because instead of smiling and celebrating her entrance (as she did at my wedding) I sobbed the entire time. I feel so rotten!

Anyway, I just happened to bump into your blog, and it's so funny, while reading through it. . .I have felt so much better! So thanks for the little healing through your blog, and please keep it up! The blogs that get the awards and recognition aren't exactly the best;)

Oremus pro invicem!

7:51 PM  
Blogger owl bijak said...

not much to say, only: "Go on!!!"

10:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amen to all the above. Yet, don't ever drive yourself crazy with whether or not you post. Post the love that moves your heart, and it will bless whomever it is supposed to. I do look forward to your posts.. I love this holy little 'blog.

9:51 AM  
Blogger forget me not said...

Dear Chiara

I don't recall if I've ever commented here, but I do visit every day and have done so even in the past weeks since your last post. I'm glad you will continue nurturing us. God bless you!

12:04 PM  
Anonymous Barbara said...

Chiara, your blog reminds me of my own youth when I, too, dreamed of becoming a cloistered contemplative. In Her Wisdom, God has not called me to that life. Nor has God deserted me. As I grow older I see that God transforms us in Her good time into the precious contemplatives needed to fulfill Providence. All manner of things ARE well. Hang in there, dear.

5:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting.. I've never seen anyone refer to God as "She".. "She" is usually reserved for the Mother of God.

9:42 PM  
Anonymous Philip Little said...

I read every post you write--thank you, and please do continue!

10:07 PM  

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