Life has definetally been crazy the last couple weeks. I spent all of Halloween weekend working on a paper, that is finally done thank the Lord. Then there was the sadness of election day. I honestly am still trying to deal with the fact that we have elected the man that we have to run this country. I'm praying for him and I'm going to try my best to wish him well but I have never been more scared for the future of this country.
The day after the election I boarded a plane and headed down to Miami for my cousin Fernando's wedding. I had an amaing time this past weekend. I saw family I hadn't seen in ten years a long with other family I hadn't seen in about two years. We laughed, we cried, we drank, we feasted, we just soaked in every moment and enjoyed each other's company.
It was the ritziest wedding I've ever been to. I felt like I was in an episode of life styles of the Rich and Famous all weekend. The rehearsal dinner on Thursday was a rehearsal cocktail party at my Aunt's house. There were waiters and bartenders there and some very expensive appetizers. The wedding on Friday was beautiful but also very lavish. The reception was at the Biltmore Hotel (one of the most expensive hotels in Miami), we had nothing but top shelf liquors, duck was the main course, and we danced like crazy. Saturday the Bride's family had us over for a BBQ. This was not a Hamburger and Hot Dog BBQ, no once again wiaters and waitresses, full bar, and Argentinian Sausage along with different cuts of steak. Lets just say I ate and drank very well this past weekend.
It was a blast and an honor to share in my cousin's special day and spend such a great time with family.
As much fun as it was, I'm glad its over. I always have an amazing time with my family but am always glad when its time to come home. It is so hard not being able to share the most important part of my life with them. Sure they all claim to be Catholic and I don't want to judge them but to them it is simply a cultural thing. My cousin had a Catholic wedding even though neither he nor his wife practice the faith or have been to mass in who knows how long simply because the mothers insisted they have a Church wedding. I don't judge them or think less of them, its just frustrating when something I percieve as so sacred and profound is not looked at like that by the people closest to you.
I wish I could talk theology with my family. I wish we could pray together and more than just a simple prayer before meals. I wish we could honestly look out for each other's growth in Holiness. It hurts to listen to stories of my brother's and cousins' sexual escapades. They talk about strip clubs, pornography, one night stands, and sex with their girlfriends like these things are a natural part of life and every man is entitled to take part in these things. Not that its a surprise, I know this is how they live their lives, and that much of the world agrees with these actions, but it is still spiritually draining to be around it and it brings sadness to my heart that the sacredness of sex and the dignity of women is lost on them. Not to mention I am a weak person and need people in my life holding me accountable to purity and it sucks knowing that my family would encourage that behavior instead of calling me to greatness with those things.
I guess what it boils down to is this: I love my family with my whole heart. I would do ANYTHING for them. I have a blast with them when we get together. But this past visit to Miami also brought out some feelings I've had for years out a little more. I feel like my family is lost like so much of our culture. Truth is subjective to them, not objective. There is always a part of me that feels out of place when I'm around them. I don't know how to engage them and make them think about how they live. I don't know how to challenge them to greatness. I don't know how to get them to realize that their souls are in danger without them thinking that I'm judging them or making them think I'm rejecting them as a person simply because I reject their actions. Bottom line: I guess I realized I need to pray for my family more than ever this weekend. There is so much goodness in them. The basics and the foundation is there they just live certain things out in a disordered way and don't get the whole picture.
I pray and hope in this year of St. Paul that conversion would come upon the hearts of my family, my heart, and our world!