Worried? Anxiety? My 2 Secret Weapons!
Do you ever get worried, anxious, stressed and overwhelmed? Do you ever feel like throwing in the towel, on an important project or commitment?
Do you ever wonder,
How did I get myself into this?
How am I going to deal with all that is coming at me?
How in the world am I going to get through this?
Do you ever feel like you are on a roller coaster and that time seems to be speeding up?
Do you ever panic? What do you do when you become like that?
Drink too much wine? Take a lorazepam? Get angry? Eat too much? Scream?
Go for a run? Listen to music? Watch an inspiring movie? Pray the Rosary? Have a conversation with a friend?
Well, recently I was feeling exactly that way! There are many, many, many demands placed on me and sometimes while my head is spinning, something else comes up, and I literally feel like I am going to faint. Right in the middle of all of my craziness, I was having a conversation with my sister. She ended up calling me at exactly the wrong time! Part of me was agitated while I was speaking with her, because I was so busy, that I just wanted to get off the phone and back to my
TO DO LIST,
her voice was so loving, so kind, so gentle, so tender, so fragile, it was so soothing…. Her voice was such a contrast to the panic I was feeling inside. Her fragility got my attention, it literally made me stop in my tracks.
And do you want to know what she was talking about?
One by one, she listed the names of people that we both knew who had passed away. People who she had ordered Masses for during the month of November, people who she had written their names on envelopes in the program offered by her parish. She also mentioned names she had put into the Book of Life at her parish instituted to pray for the dead.
As she said the names,
Mom, dad, Uncle John, Richard, Fr. Szwarc, Babcia Widziszewska, Dziadzius Widziszewski, Wujek Wojtek, Mr. Krol, Sister Nagebaner, Fr. Koszan, Mr. Pawlak…
as she went on and on…. something was stirred in me!
Something touched me, deeply and profoundly…
I literally felt propelled into acting, into remembering, and to getting my own Masses ordered, into praying for the deceased.
I am not sure how it happened, or why it happened, but I just stopped participating and writing names on those envelopes, I rationalized a 101 different reasons, why I wasn’t practicing a spiritual discipline which was once so very important to me.
I realized in that moment, in speaking with my sister, that my “busyness” had caused a part of me to deaden.
I had become immune to doing what I knew was good for me, good for the Souls in Purgatory, what was in my conscience, what was important to me, all in the name of the God of “busyness.” Or was is smuggish pride? Or an indifference or disbelief? But I was shocked at how cavalier I had become about something that was once so important.
What has happened me? I wondered? After all, my work, is to inspire others in their vocation of motherhood, and part of my own spirituality had died. My “busyness” had done that! You see for years, I prayed a daily Rosary for the Souls in Purgatory, I was ever so vigilant in giving copies of Maria Simma’s book, Get Us Out of Here!
Why had I stopped? Because I was busy?
I shuddered at the thought. The conversation with my sister, brought me back to myself! Her words resonated with something that was very deeply rooted in me as a spiritual Catholic woman. God, am I blessed to have her as a sister! Immediately, I made sure that Masses got ordered for a whole slew of family, friends, business associates, grade school friends, religious who have passed away.
Did you know that?
Souls that have passed away and are “trapped” in Purgatory, NEED our prayers to be released.
Your prayers, sacrifices and Masses offered for them can release them from purgatory into heaven.
Souls in Purgatory cannot help themselves.
Souls in Purgatory can help people on earth, they are powerful intercessors, but they need our prayers first.
They can help us, but they cannot help themselves.
We need each other.
They are the most neglected, powerful intercessors we have!
Well, back to the beginning of this post, where I talked about all of my crazy, out of control feelings, do you remember the start of this reflection? Well, just a day or two after I ordered all those Masses, my mindset was completely transformed into a mountaintop, spiritual joy, a sense of hope, a sense of wonder that all replaced the roller coaster panic. I was startled at the huge change, when nothing really had changed.
And then, a gentle knowing entered my soul, I was given the knowing that you know sense? Do you know what I mean, that feeling when you know something, just because you know it, almost as it if was infused into your being?
Well, I knew, that my state was radically transformed because of the prayerful intercession of the Souls in Purgatory who interceded for me.
Now you girl, go run, order Masses for people that you know have passed away! While your at it, stop in a cemetery and bring your children! Did you know that you can gain an indulgence for doing so?
According to tradition, St. Gertrude the Great was told by Our Lord that this prayer, each time piously recited it, would release 1,000 souls from their suffering in purgatory:
I offer You the most precious blood
of thy Divine Son, Jesus,
in union with the Masses said
throughout the world today,
for all the Holy Souls in Purgatory,
for sinners everywhere,
for sinners in the universal Church,
for those in my own home,
and in my family. Amen.”
So, what are my secret weapons to deal with worry and anxiety?
The Souls in Purgatory and Eucharistic Adoration, my two secret weapons!
Dorothy Pilarski is the founder of Dynamic Women of Faith, author, motivational speaker, blogger , guest columnist with the Catholic Register and a facilitator on Salt + Light TV.