Monday, September 26, 2011

The Little Things in Life

I have been given fun shirts from my brother and sister. One of them is my Marvin the Martian shirt. I can't help but feel like a big kid every time I put it on underneath my clerics. "If only people knew," I think to myself, "that right now, as I sit in my clerics, I actually have a Marvin the Martian shirt underneath..."

I find myself secretly desiring a hostile takeover of the whole world with my fellow martians every time I put on this shirt. Ha! I would totally do it if I could have a hat just like Marvin!

All Copyrights belong to Warner Bros. *this ain't mine*

Sigh...it's the little things in life that amuse me....

I have no idea if anyone reads my blogs, still, I will ask: What are some things that amuse you?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

End of the Day Prayer

Well, here I am....sitting here....in my office...it's the end of the day...and I haven't gotten as much done as I wanted to get done. Fortunately, I did pray, which is an ubber must for all priests. Please, dear Jesus, help me to get my prayer time in regularly. And yet, I mainly stayed behind the desk, tried to clean things up, tried to make sense of certain files that  needed ordering, and I tried to get my new laptop to sync with the office's printer...oi vay!

So, now I sit here...kinda feeling like I did the best I could today. I tried to get myself organized. One window into my office. So natural light is limited. I have lamps, but it's not the same...I look out in front of me and think of the little red book with quotes from saints hiding underneath some of the papers on my desk.

St. Ignatius of Loyola wrote something that made me think.
"It is true that the voice of God, having once fully penetrated the heart, becomes strong as the tempest and loud as the thunder; but before reaching the heart it is as weak as a light breath which scarcely agitates the air. It shrinks from noise, and is silent amid agitation."
Even as I sit here, the voice of the Lord is present. He lingers in the air. Just as "the Spirit of God was moving over the face of the waters" of that formless, dark, void of an earth, so too does the Spirit of God, the voice of God, sits there, lingering, and yet moving in a dynamic way incomprehensible to our own understanding, over the formless, sinful, dark voids of our own hearts...desiring to bring life and order to them by his voice...by the touch of his divine life...

Just as the beloved awaited in an excited anticipation for the kiss from her love, awaiting in anticipation as his lips hovered over hers, so too did the earth awaited the kiss of God to breathe life and order into creation. That moment of anticipation for the creation of all things...that moment as his Spirit moved and hovered over the waters, for that moment when God would say, "LET THERE BE LIGHT!"

And daily does He await to do this to us and in us...to have that moment with us...to bring us his very self so as to give us life, to order the passions of our hearts...and yes, he may be "strong as the tempest and loud as the thunder," and yet, more often then nought he will work within the heart silently and slowly grow in ardor until he becomes a raging wind kept within the heart.

And so, as He awaits there, shrinking away from noise, as He awaits outside of the "doors of my heart," I silence my internet radio. I let my guard down. I allow that whispering voice of God's silent peace into my anticipating heart as I pray:

Come, Holy Spirit.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Psalm 95 ~~ A call to praise God

Come, let us sing to the Lord and shout with joy to the rock who saves us
Let us approach him with praise and thanksgiving, and sing joyful songs to the Lord.

The Lord is God the Mighty God, the great King over all the gods.
He holds in his hands the depths of the earth and the highest mountains as well.
He made the sea, it belongs to him, the dry land too for it was formed by his hand.

Come then, let us bow down and worship, bending the knee before the Lord, our maker.
For he is our God and we are his people, the flock he shepherds.

Today, listen to the voice of the Lord: "Do not grow stubborn, as your fathers did in the wilderness,
when at Meriba and Massah they challenged me and provoked me,
although they had seen all of my works.

"Forty years I endured that generation. I said, 'They are a people whose hearts go astray
and they do not know my ways.' So I swore in my anger, 'They shall not enter into my rest.'"

Sunday, September 18, 2011

"My Kind"

I'm tired....ugh....just feel like dying right now...lol...no not really, but you know what I mean? Long days can leave you so exhausted when all is said and done...

So here I am...waiting to go out with my brother priest for dinner. It'll be nice to just hang out for a little and lay low with another of "my kind." Ha ha ha! It's so true though. It's great for priests to have very close friends who are not priests; it's so important to have those friends in our lives that we can share our lives with, those families that we can connect with and not feel like we are "on." And yet, priests do need other priests as friends too.

Basketball players hang around with other basketball players. Why? Because they relate the best with each other. They have a common interest and their friendships develop from there.

Priests have the priesthood in common. It's what sets them apart from other people. They have been changed ontologically...uh...metaphysically...uh...another way of saying this is that there has been a real actual change spiritually that has a real effect on their complete being....no, not just a warm fuzzy feeling, but a real change to their whole being on a very deep spiritual level....So yeah...we are different....and we need to hang out with those who are just like us...who understand how to relate with us...

It'll be good to just decompress over some food....Yes Jesus, I am very tired...and my eyes are killing me....still, thank you for making me your priest....thank you for giving me an opportunity to hang out with another of "my kind." lol...yes...thank you, Jesus

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Lord cares for his priests

I was talking with another priest for a little bit. We were talking about how interesting it is that the Lord has a way of taking care of his priests...the priest just needs to make sure he is paying attention.

The other day, after celebrating mass and preaching, I wasn't sure if what I had done was "good enough". Okay, yes, I know the Lord will use me as an instrument, and I know that I am not going to have an effect on the whole congregation that they all rise up and become zealous and start a huge movement to convert the whole city (and yes, my brain thinks about stuff like that...lol)...and yet, a part of me that struggles with the quality of what I can put in....(I suppose it's also a question of my perception of it)...

Not just 30 seconds after I process out, an individual walks out. I greet them, "Have a good morning sir," To which he responds, "I don't know if I agree with your sermon." He shakes my hand, doesn't make eye contact, and moves on....

I watch him leave and I think to myself...."I'm sorry to hear that, because I gave you exactly what the Church teaches about mercy, forgiveness, our sin, our need to show forgiveness as God forgives us in the Sacrament of Reconciliation..."

And I'm left a little wounded after that encounter. Then the people began to leave and person after person they began to say, "Good homily," "Very good sermon, father," "Thank you," "You were filled with the Spirit, thank you for your words."

I was thrown aback because these people had not heard what the man said, but they immediately began to affirm me so as to counter the "attack." I thought to myself that it's just a nice thing they are saying, but it just kept coming. Usually, people don't remember anything and they'll just wish me a good day. THAT'S the most common response....but it kept coming.....and I began to say to myself, "is this real? is this just a coincidence?" And it kept coming....and I heard the inner "Chris Ortega" voice say, 'Yes, Chris! Believe it! The Lord is letting you know you did well.'

I laughed at myself and I said..."okay, okay....I won't listen to that man, Jesus...I will listen to you as you speak through your people."

When the priest seems to question something in ministry, the Lord always seems to work through others to tell him that he loves him, supports him, and that HE (God) has everything under control. The priest just has to pay attention and he'll notice what God is doing in his life...

I'm glad I paid attention :p

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Long time inquiring, first time blogging

Hello World,


Alright, this is my first blog. Why am i doing this? well, in all honestly, I just wanted to give people the opportunity to see what a priest thinks about. Sure we all have experiences of what life is about, but what does a priest think about? I know if i were a teen, I'd be like, "What do they do all day? Just sit in church?" Ha! Whatever!! There is so much to a priests life and he has to go through so much just in one day....but do you really know what he is thinking about? What is he going through? Here is your opportunity to know what goes on in the brain of this priest.


First off, I'm from the Los Angeles area...and now...I'm in Georgia...and I'm loving it! A West Coast Kid in the Bible Belt....I LOVE IT! I never felt more at home....


So...here I am....more to come in the future... Peace