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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Ambrose and Prudentius took something classical and made it Christian; the revisers and their imitators took something Christian and tried to make it classical. The result may be pedantry, and sometimes perhaps poetry; but it is not piety. “Accessit Latinitas, discessit pietas.”
— Fr. Joseph Connelly (1954)

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What are you in denial of?
published 20 March 2013 by Dr. Ronda Chervin

NE PERSON is in denial that over-eating is gluttony – after all it’s not the innermost circle of Dante’s hell! Another person is in denial of harshly judging people who over-eat? Another person is in denial that harsh judgment of others for their harsh judgments all day long, and this is also a harsh judgment!

I love humble sinners who admit to their defects and sins and beg us to pray for them. What upsets me is those, like me sometimes, who are busy reciting the sins of others and rarely talk about their own defects and sins as things that need brotherly and sisterly prayer. Denial is not being weak. It’s pretending one is not weak out of pride or fear that others will judge us harshly if we admit these things. Of course, usually they are judging us harshly even when we never mention those sins.

I realize that a therapist would say, people are in denial because they have been so wounded as children by harshness of parents and others that they cannot bear to open themselves to more judgment and instead try to hide their defects and sins as much as possible. I believe this is true, but then we need to ask for prayers for healing of our wounds and get spiritual and/or psychological counsel vs. putting up a façade of how flawless we are.

So what are you in denial of the sinfulness of: here’s a few we rarely hear of from the pulpit: being in debt from wanting more luxuries than one can afford and putting it on the credit card instead of enjoying a simpler life-style? gossiping about the faults of others more than we pray for each one; Envying those who wallow in sins we wish we could commit without guilt? Unhealthy dependencies? Trusting in fallible humans and then wallowing in disappointment when they fail us vs. trusting in Jesus our Savior?...Making idols of our successes by boasting of them vs. giving all the credit to God for the talents He has given us?

Want to add to the list?

Happy end of Lent in case you want to squeeze in one more Confession before Good Friday?

And be sure pray for dear Ronda to stop enjoying calling people on their denial! Doing it in a witty manner probably isn’t enough of an excuse, is it? So be sure to judge me harshly for writing this blog! Smile! See why God made sure that being a woman I would never be preaching from the pulpit?

My prayer: dear Jesus, in Your mercy, liberate us from these layers of judgment even as you heal us of the wounds that can lead us to defensive denial. Pour Your love into us that we may be both merciful and authentic at the same time.