Amateur Catholic

We don't write books or do speaking tours.
In fact, we barely do our jobs.
-We're the B-Team of Catholic Bloggers-

This is the home of the Amateur Catholic® bloggers - or as we like to refer to ourselves, the B-team. We don't write books or do speaking tours. In fact, we barely do our jobs. That's not to say we're unambitious though... You see, this coalition is just the second phase our blogoshpere conquest. We suppose you could think of us as amateur crusaders too.

Membership will not bring you any money, perks, notoriety, or prestige - but you will get the privilege of proudly displaying the B-team badge on your blog! Lucky you, huh?

amateurcatholic @

If you are hosting a conference, parish function, or some other event and can not afford the exorbitant fees typically associated with a Professional Catholic®, please contact one of our members. We like to hear ourselves talk just as much as the Professional Catholics® do, we just don't charge you for it. But hey give us a meal, free beer, and a designated driver, and we'll speak about breaking the Da Vinci Code or anything else you might care to hear about.

The B-Team badge is copryright 2006, The B-Team Bloggers®. Of course, we're Amateur Catholics®, so if you use the badge without permission (enrolled membership), we won't hunt you down and make you cough up your hard-earned bucks. Just have fun with it and maybe buy us a beer next time you're in town.

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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

The Anchoress: Amateur Catholic

I am an amateur Catholic because after 30 freaking years, I still cannot get comfortable with the hand-grabbing sign-of-peace at mass, and I never will. I want them to move it or lose it - it’s that simple.

I am an amateur Catholic because, while I like the breast-tapping that goes with the Agnus Dei, and wish more folks did it, because there are both mystical Christian and Taoist purposes behind it, so it’s kind of neat and Ecumenical, I also know that I can never seem to get the taps right. I’m always out of sync, like Steve Martin in The Jerk, I just can’t catch the rhythm. I CAN, however, tap it in Latin. And so, it would be best if the mass would allow us to, you know, chant “Angus Dei, qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere nobis” with the lovely, wandering air, as opposed to the unsingable “Lamb of God, you (super high vocal high jump) TAKE away the sins of the world….” But don’t get me started on modern Catholic music.

I am an amateur Catholic because even though I have published numerous articles in Catholic magazines, whenever I mention that I am a writer, people say, “sorry, I’ve never read anything by you, I don’t think.” And I say, “perhaps you read thus and such,” and they get a blank, sad expression on their face and say, “no…nope…doesn’t sound familiar…oh, do you mean that book about why men aren’t necessary? Are you Maureen Dowd? WOW! You look so much thinner and crankier on television!”

I am an amateur Catholic because whenever blogging folk congregate somewhere they ask me to come participate and maybe lead a forum on “Women” bloggers” or “Christian Women Bloggers” or “Catholic Christian Women Bloggers” and I always must refuse because I rather like being anonymous and unknown. I was tempted to accept one invitation but I believe they thought I was joking when I suggested I show up wearing a nun’s habit and wax teeth to protect my identity.

I am an amateur Catholic, because I was serious.

I am an amateur Catholic because all these years since the second grade, wherein I made my first confession - and I have loved the sacrament ever since - I still find myself confessing, at least once a year, that sometimes I just miss mass because I was feeling childishly obstinate and I wanted a pajama day.

I am an amateur Catholic because while I can name the 20 Mysteries of the Rosary and the 7 Sacraments and can mostly name the Ten Commandments (if I sing them the way Sr. Gemma taught me) I can’t for the life of me remember the 7 Deadly Sins or the (how many) fruits of the Holy Spirit…

I am an amateur Catholic because while I am second to no one in my appreciation of Gregorian Chant and the great music which has been composed for the church over the last 2000 years (basically anything before 1965) I have a deep and abiding love of the music of the Mighty Clouds of Joy, the old-timey Gospel music, Sam Cooke and the Soul Stirrers, the Dixie Mockingbirds and The Abbot Kinney Lighthouse Choir. And while I have no doubt that our warm pope Uncle Benedict XVI would quite enjoy some of that music, he might give a frown if he heard me singing that I’d see him in the Rapture!

I am an amateur Catholic because try as I might, I still find myself curling a lip at other people who have done nothing to earn it other than being in my way when I’m in a crappy mood. I fail in love every single day. I harbor great resentment toward people who stand around in church after mass chattering loudly because - after all - can’t they see I’m trying to PRAY over here? I do so many things that offer no glory to God. I lack humility. I lack charity. I am not unkind, but I am often impatient. When I am lazy, I embrace cynicism. I have a sharp tongue and am too often very quick to unleash it on someone. While I do not lie or gossip, I am capable of using that sharp tongue to not only “cut” but to literally slice open an artery and bleed someone out. I am selfish and self-interested and my use of the world “I” is second only to Bill Clinton’s use of it.

So, yeah. I’m an amateur. A rank amateur. I need grace - oh, I need it. Amazing grace.

Can I be in your club?

The Anchoress
Awww, you had me at "hand-grabbing sign-of-peace at mass" ... and I was crying in sympathy by the time I got to "Maureen Dowd." Come aboard, Anchoress, and welcome!


At 3/08/2006 4:05 PM, Blogger Der Tommissar said...

You're Joan Carrol Cruz?

Whoa! It's an honor!wwjbt

At 3/08/2006 4:24 PM, Blogger Brian Michael Page said...

Anchoress, I have the solution to your hand-being-grabbed problem.
The Our Father Holding Hand
Originally created for the Lord's Prayer, but can be just as effective at the Sign of Peace.

Peace, (with or without pun intended)

At 3/08/2006 5:21 PM, Blogger Rick Lugari said...

So Maureen Dowd looks cranky on TV?

I hadn't noticed...


At 3/08/2006 9:21 PM, Blogger Maureen Martin said...

Hey Anchoress,

Welcome to the B-Team!


At 3/08/2006 10:13 PM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

Welcome aboard, Anchoress.

Now, I'm wondering if I should be as brazen as Rick has been with the other B-Team inductees and ask for a link in your blogroll (I'm actually surprised he hasn't already asked you).

At 3/08/2006 10:31 PM, Blogger Rick Lugari said...

Hah! I did no such thing. Nice try pee-boy...

ooops, Rhonda just said I have to be nice to you. Nice try neato friend...


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