About this blogger:
Ronda Chervin received a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Fordham University and an MA in Religious Studies from Notre Dame Apostolic Institute. A widow, mother, and grandmother, she currently teaches philosophy at Holy Apostles College and Seminary in Cromwell, Connecticut. Write to her at chervinronda@gmail.com.
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“A penalty is decreed against clerics, who, being in sacred Orders, or holding benefices, do not wear a dress befitting their Order. […] In these days, the contempt of religion has grown to such a pitch that—making but little account of their own dignity, and of the clerical honor—some even wear in public the dress of laymen…”
— Council of Trent (Session 14, Chapter 6)

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Special Graces in Work and Family
published 18 June 2012 by Dr. Ronda Chervin

Those of you who attempted responding to some of the challenges in my Way of Love: a Step by Step Spiritual Marathon (see 100 STEPS), may be happy to know that I started my first group of parishioners to undertake the program together. I first gave a talk on the Way of Love and then invited any who wished to follow up with 9 weeks of challenges with once a weeks sharing sessions. 25 signed up! They seem eager and open. I am so glad. Most of them seemed motivated by that idea of mine “if holiness is having nothing but love in your heart, what are you doing with the pockets of unloving anger, anxiety, discouragement….?” During the period of the 100 Days of Steps, I had my 75th birthday. One of my daughters, Carla, wrote a poem for me about my motherhood. I am excerpting parts that are universal to all mothers and children: A Song Sung By a Fish

There are those things that can’t be said simply.

…We wheel around inside our mothers and only vaguely find one another, all of us twisting like a swarm of Jonahs, turning this way and that in the skin of what either swallows us whole or becomes an ark. But a Noah is also terrified, anxiously watching, the waters recede a little more every day, white-knuckled patriarch perched on the precipice of a vanishing oblivion.

Whatever I write here is wholly a preamble…

If she (Mother) were to die, this might write itself as finished, but it can’t be done now: nothing that breathes will allow itself to be summed up while still puffing: every exhalation is a new letter in the alphabet of a life.

For some period of time, I lived inside my mother wearing the face of a wish.

I remember the hushed sanctuary of a thousand churches, the round braille of rosary beads passing one by ten through your fingers as Mysteries, back and forth soft Latin waves of devotion: the Lord be with you, and also with you: a thousand times a thousand times forever…

I do not notice that those who walk on water keep their arms flung out wide; that they move in the shape of a cross.

In other dreams, we face each other, so in those dreams, I have risen. I am a raven then, tight and black with eyes on fire. I am getting ready to fly to and fro, to and fro, hunting for branches…

I am a crucifix swinging below my mother’s breasts. It has been her hope to save me…

This is a preamble: the sound things make before they break,

a rumbled warning before the earth quakes toward another eternal effort to swallow itself.

We are born in the water, borne by the water, slight boats on the crest of a flood.

We carry our mothers inside us when they die, whole in the way of what has finished singing and can finally be named.

There are those things that can be simply said.

Read more blog entries by Dr. Ronda Chervin by visiting RondaView. Dr. Ronda Chervin has many free e-books and audios on her website, rondachervin.com. If you go to her website and read or listen and then want to correspond with her she will be available. Her schedule does not permit, however, responding to comments on the Blog, though she enjoys reading them. Dr. Ronda’s newest project is spiritualityrunningtogod.com.

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