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Anonymous Anna the Traditionalist wrote:

Hi, guys —

I am deeply attracted to the Traditionalist Mass and the sacraments, its rituals and spirituality.

I left the Church for many years partly because these devotions were no longer available to us for about thirty years. There was so much turmoil in the liturgy and a lack of reverence in the Mass. Our Lady was even left out and she is very special to me.

When I was 21 in 1964, I entered a Carmelite monastery and after awhile found I was attracted to another nun. Nothing ever happened between us and we never discussed the issue. I felt a deep happiness in being a Carmelite but I felt so afraid of these feelings and, in my heart, I was afraid to talk to anyone about it. For this reason, I felt the right thing to do was to leave so I just made up a story and left. In truth, I am a contemplative in my soul and still believe in the power for good and the love of God that is contained in this life.

Twenty years ago, I fell in love with a wonderful woman and we became partners. We have lived together for eighteen years and have been true companions. We never desired to formally marry and tend toward conservative beliefs politically and socially. I never thought about our relationship as being a sin, but I always told her that Jesus, my God, is my first love and she was fine with that.

About nine months ago, I was jolted and believe it was from God. Through some odd circumstances I became aware for the first time in 25 years that I am a Catholic in my nature and in my heart, and I wanted to come home. My partner understood and was very supportive. She is a non-practicing Baptist, and even her mother, who was a strong Baptist, gave us her blessing as partners.

We have been non-sexual for at least five years, which just seemed to happen to both of us at the same time, and I know that if we maintain chastity, I won't be defying Catholic teaching if we continue to live together.

My companion told me she would like to believe we might someday be sexual again if we both wanted it, even though we are contented as things are. I think it's more of a psychological thing for her. She has gone through a lot of soul searching and pain over this. She even told me she was shocked at herself because we have always honored each other's souls and now she felt she was competing with God and was scared of where I was headed. I reassured her I would have wanted to spend my life with her, with or without sexuality. We are very compatible and are true companions toward one another.

I also believe the word "companion" is very deep and lasting and better than many formal marriages are. I'm 18 years older than her, so my perspective on this concept is different from hers, since she grew up in the 1960's and 70's. Most of our friends have no use for the Catholic Church, its teachings or beliefs, which doesn't give her any support to think clearly about what is happening. At this point, I think she is afraid of, and turned off by, the Church so I really don't know how to handle this. I do not want to offend God.

I do love and believe in the Church. I am extremely happy to be back but also want to be fair to her and her feelings. I know I can remain chaste for the rest of my life and still be her true companion. It would be easy to avoid any sexuality by just not being available. She would most probably be OK with it but I am torn between just taking the time, as it comes along, to tell her how I feel about my faith since have been "jolted" versus making some kind of definitive statement to her. I feel guilty for not making a full disclosure to her of where I am in my faith, but I know it will take time for her to become OK with my return to the Church and later on she will be more open to understanding this.

One more thing. I don't believe lasting loving and spiritual gay relationships are immoral, but I do believe that promiscuity and making sex the center of one's life is sinful. I understand why the Church follows the "sex is for procreation" argument. The logic is quite obvious. I also understand chastity as a form of giving oneself to God alone.

  • My question is how do I be true to Our Lord, first and foremost, and still allow time for my partner to adjust to the situation without blurting out, "We will never be physical lovers again."?

What I read is that I shouldn't live with her because there might be an occasion of sin; I should know better. She would never try to interfere with my soul's journey, nor would I interfere with hers.

I am essentially a traditionalist, except for this, and I do go to Confession. Nevertheless, I don't know how to handle this disclosure to a priest, seeing I don't want to be a cafeteria Catholic either.

  • Should I take the chance with the traditionalist priest?

I believe God understands my dilemma about remaining firm in my renewed faith and still giving her time to adjust.

Anonymous Anna the Traditionalist

  { How can I be true to the Lord while allowing my partner to adjust to a change of lifestyle? }

Mary Ann replied:

Dear Anonymous Anna —

You may not feel that your relationship is an occasion of sin to you, but it may well be for your companion. She is younger and less formed. Even if she is OK with celibacy, she may also have spiritual temptations (as it appears she is having). So, in charity, you must consider her.

Another thing, even if you are not sexual, the erotic aspect of your emotional attachment, if there is one, and it is consented to, can be wrong. Your emotional attachment itself may need purification, especially since it is grounded in a lesbian relationship. It is not wrong to have friends, but this appears to be a sexually suffused friendship that is passing through a quiescent stage sexually.

You know that adultery is morally wrong for a married person. It is no more or less wrong than homosexuality, and often there is less excuse in the psyche of the person. Imagine that a married woman has a spiritual, lasting, loving, romantic, non-sexual relationship with a man that is not her husband. You can see that this is wrong as well.

You need to be honest with your friend. By doing this, you are also witnessing to God's truth.

Jesus isn't just for you. He is for all of us, and He wants your friend to know and love Him also.

Mary Ann

Mike replied:

Dear Anonymous Anna —

I would just second Mary Ann's great answer!

If you have been blessed with a jolt from the Lord, follow it.

Yes, it may be painful at times but He's looking out for you. Try to find an Adoration chapel and just sit with the Lord. If you can go, privately:

  • ask questions
  • argue your view with Him, if you wish.
  • and wait for an inner reply.

I go to my chapel one to two times a week. Don't worry about any emotions.

I've gone to the chapel when I am:

  • happy
  • sad, and
  • mad

Remember, Jesus was a man like us in all things but sin, so He understands your personal struggles and trials. He's right there with you!

There is one last areas that concerns me. You said:

  • Should I take the chance with the traditionalist priest?

You should go to any priest. Yeah, there a few looney priests out there; nevertheless they are all ontologically Jesus. [ontology deals with the study of being.]

If your Baptist friend has any questions about the faith tell her to stop by our site and ask any question she wants. We are not here to convert, but just explain and clarify misperceptions about the faith. We let our visitors decide.

If she is interested, encourage her to consider buying a cheap copy of the Catechism of the Catholic Church to learn everything we believe as Catholics.

Mike

Anonymous Anna replied:

Thank you Mike and Mary Ann.

Your counsel helps me have the courage to go on and heed the jolt!

May God bless you all for what you're doing on this web site.

Anna

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