Our family are traditional Catholics and active in church and activities with our children. I know burnout exists in all fields and perhaps that’s it. But sometimes I get the feeling like we need a break from church. Perhaps it’s a lack of joy due to a recent loss in our family almost a year ago. At this point in our lives my kids would snap me back into it, they’re used to mass a couple of times a week and often joyful about it. But it seems as time moves on I feel a little distant from God and daily prayers seem empty at times. What do you do when you feel too Catholic?
No such thing as “too catholic”. What you feel is just sloth. Burnout if you will. See it as a test of your faith and overcome.
Try adoration and bring it to our Lord. It works for me.
This feeling reminds me of what my daughter calls me half laughing, half seriously “Pope police”. Sorry for your loss. It is in times like these that the Church helps immensely. On one hand, the Sacraments and adoration, on the other the church as a community. I hope your parish has groups that do activities, these help to integrate the group, make likeminded friends, brothers and sisters in Christ.
Keep being too Catholic
May God Bless you
I have never felt that.
Being Catholic is a good thing for sure. The feeling and meaning behind my attention grabbing question is one from grief or fatigue. The exasperated feeling when a loss happens and you look at the cross or Jesus in adoration, or just being engaged so much at church and still ask Him, 'what do you want me to do now, I’ll do it?!" And then, not feeling like you can hear Him is the feeling and meaning behind it. It happens, I can recognize it.
I’m explaining this to you because your answer would make a fellow Catholic brother or sister feel isolated rather than feeling like can relate and bring them closer. My advice (take it or leave it): It really doesn’t take much to extend someone some empathy. Catholics should be more charitable towards each other.
But nonetheless, I suppose you did the job and answered the question. Thanks.
I feel like this almost all the time, with a couple of good weeks in between dark periods.
It’s unpleasant, but not something to worry about so far as your soul is concerned, many saints have suffered from the same thing. As long as you live a good catholic life and partake in the Sacraments you are not any more distant from God than before, even though I know it can feel like it.
I’ve never found a reliable way to feel better myself, but if you experiment with different things you might have more luck. I think a lot of it has to do with what the cause is. For me, the probable causes are past sins and the fact that I didn’t grow up in a religious household, and so there’s not a whole lot to do. If you’ve only started to feel this way after years then there might be some other causes though, like the ones you mention.
I don’t know how to give any more specific advice, unfortunately, and this is mostly something you need to figure out for yourself. I can however share two bits of my experience that I think can still be helpful, the first is to be careful with cutting down on your devotional life.
At first glance it seems like a good idea to cut out some of the “extra” devotions like daily mass or certain prayers in order to not feel as burned out, but this is a short-sighted solution in my experience.
Instead I recommend that if your current routine is too difficult to maintain, to rather make it more varied and try new devotions. I wouldn’t recommend to stop going to your current daily masses though, and I also feel strongly that everyone should pray at least three Rosaries a week. Beyond this anything goes.
The second is a bit different, as it’s more like a life-hack that I recently learned about. It’s called spiritual warfare. As it turns out, some of our spiritual problems are caused by demons, and a 20-second binding prayer can often completely or partially rid us of unwanted feelings, especially when they seem to have no apparent cause.
This should not be attempted before thoroughly researching the subject and consulting with your priest, though.
Thanks this was helpful. And that’s true, I find myself getting the routine of prayer done. Cutting some out and sticking to meaningful ones while I cope helps. Yes, it’s different for all, I agree.
Thanks again, hearing others deal with this helps. I forgot the saints had this issue. I’ll have to read up. <3
Pope police is funny.
Thats true, lean on the church…the cross. Thanks
I’m almost sorry I phrased the question like I did. It will soon attract the prunes who will ignore the details and go straight for the question as it’s typed. lol
The days leading up to getting closer to the faith, I felt like I wasn’t Catholic enough. Honestly, having children keeps me grounded. They tend to rope us back into what we need to do as parents and keeping them involved in Church from the start is what did it. They’re school age now.
No I feel like I’m not Catholic enough.
There’s no such thing as being “too Catholic” in the sense of being Too Faithful to God. .
Yet there is such a thing of over-involving - thus leaving insufficient time for family.
It sounds like maybe you’re experiencing a little bit of spiritual dryness. I just have a couple thoughts to offer. One thing you can do is, as other posters have said, bring these things to Jesus in prayer, especially prayer after receiving the Eucharist, and adoration. You can think about speaking to a spiritual advisor to help you through these difficult moments. If you feel that your bereavement over your loved one has become a lot to bear, you can always consider more professional counseling/therapy. It is important to take care of your mental and emotional health! Finally, you can try reading from Saint John of the Cross’ poem Dark Night of the Soul, which I believe deals with spiritual dryness.
May God bless you with His peace, which surpasses all understanding!
Interestingly, I don’t know that I “feel” Catholic enough. Won’t take the Eucharist in my hand, won’t stand in the line where the priest isn’t the one administering it, will not hold hands during the Our Father before sign of peace and will not attend the Mass with the guitars and drums. But when I listen to certain individuals who I really like talk about the “New” Mass it causes me to fear I’m really truly Catholic. I love what we have but I really enjoy watching the old school Mass on the internet. BTW I am a new convert.
Never. What I sense is that I/ do not live my faith seriously enough.
Agree, our kids are a blessing in many more ways than one.
Perhaps a spiritual director could help. At the very least they can encourage you to keep on keeping on.
Agree with you. Between Soccer, Football, Volleyball, Taekwondo, it is hard to fit the Church’s extracurricular activities. I was speaking from my current perspective (empty nest). I was lucky that our parish had activities for the kids and some at night for adults. Once the kids were able to look after themselves, we found some night courses given by the Dioceses. We had to drive to the Cathedral but it was worth it. The Church was so much to offer. Of course its backed up by the Holly Spirit.
You can never bee too Catholic.
May God Bless you,
Excellent idea. Sometimes I take it for granted. Sometimes it is hard to find a fit with the right priest, but the search is worth it.