The Catholic Church recently introduced a new translation of the liturgy in English. The transition has been difficult at times for us who have the old mass responses indelibly imprinted on our brains. Cards with the new responses have been provided so the congregation can follow along. Those who do not read off the cards stand out like a sore thumb as they inevitably blurt out the wrong responses!
I attended a daily mass one morning right after the change took place and it was a comical sight. Have you ever seen a fish that was just caught flopping around on the deck of a boat? Well, that’s exactly what we all looked like trying to follow the changes – the priest included! When the priest omitted the intercessions during the mass one woman blurted out, “Father, we didn’t do the petitions”. He responded without missing a beat, “The petition is that I get through this mass!”
We all laughed and, sure enough, more confusion ensued on all sides. It occurred to me that when the leader is unsure or confused others follow in the confusion and have trouble finding their equilibrium. In the spiritual life this is no different. Without a spirtual guide to help us we can feel like a mouse in a maze or a flopping fish. I know that I’ve felt like that before!
St. Therese has been for me the one who helps bring clarity and peace during difficult transitions and decisions. She has acted like a compass always pointing to True North – Jesus. She has a way in her writings of getting to the heart of the matter and keeping things simple, but profound. St. Therese can be a most reliable guide for anyone who is open to trying her simple path to God.