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My blog, my choice. My blog, my choice.

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So yesterday I wrote a deeply personal post about my recent spiritual struggles and my feelings of hope upon seeing Pope Francis step onto the balcony. I felt very vulnerable, especially since I spoke about not even being able to pray this Lent. I believe that’s what’s called “putting myself out there.”

Anyway, I put a link to the post up on my Facebook page and was immediately met by a commenter who wanted to draw me into a conversation or controversy on the new pope. That wasn’t the point of my post, and it certainly was not where my head or my heart were at that moment. So I basically said, “No comment.” But the commenter persisted with yet another link. And again I said, “Not going to engage.”

And then this was the best part, the commenter wrote, “May I suggest you not post blog posts that invite engagement?”

Wait. Did someone just tell me I am not free to write whatever I want on my own blog? Did someone — someone who complains about the restrictions the Church puts on various people and actions — actually tell me I need to restrict my writing to suit their needs? Do I no longer have free speech? I was speechless. And, even today, I’m still a little incredulous that the bastions of “tolerance” are so freaking intolerant. Funny how that’s such a one-sided thing these days. I’ve got more tolerance in my little finger than many of these people will ever see or own in a lifetime.

But I digress. I consider myself a spiritual writer these ┬ádays. It’s one of the reasons I left OSV Daily Take. I didn’t really want to post about the news of the day in a journalistic or political or controversial way, which is kind of what is required of the big-hit bloggers on Catholic sites. I wanted to blog about the spiritual journey, about prayer, about light and dark, confusion and hope, doubt and faith.

That is where I am. That is who I am. And no one has a right to tell me that I must write a certain way or respond in a certain way for any reason whatsoever. I don’t have an obligation or a duty to answer whatever argument or debate or comment comes my way. As in meditation, when those monkey mind thoughts or comments start jumping around, I choose to watch them float by on the stream of my mind and disappear over the horizon.

This blog is as much for me as it is for any of my readers — and I am so grateful to those of you who return here day after day. But, truth be told, if I didn’t have NSS, I’d be writing these same things in my spiral-bound spiritual journal. This is where I hash out my spiritual life, and if I can share something that helps you along the way or inspires you or makes you smile, all the better.

My blog, my choice. And I choose not to engage. I choose to build a community of love.

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23 Comments Post a comment
  1. Be who you are! You are a treasure of the church and of the community; you are to me, a treasure of a friend. I read the thread and was appalled.

    God bless you!

    March 15, 2013
  2. Maria Rvans #

    That is terrible. There are some people who delight in being negative. Your positivity is a breath of fresh air. Keep it up. Goodness will always be a reproach to those who don’t share it.

    March 15, 2013
    • Mary DeTurris Poust #

      Thank you, Maria!

      March 15, 2013
  3. Lenny #

    I’ve been reading YOUR blog for several months and have found them to be down to earth and real. Many of your posts have given me pause to think, pray and most of all re-evaluate my thoughts actions etc. I agree with Fran’s comment YOU are a treasure to many unknown individuals like myself—I have enjoyed your books as well. If you can’t be who you are then who are you!! Anyway be yourself—that’s why I read your blog and add you to my daily prayers. Keep up the good work.

    Lenny

    March 15, 2013
    • Mary DeTurris Poust #

      Dear Lenny,
      Thank you for your beautiful note. Makes my day to hear from a reader I didn’t know was out there. :-)
      And thank you for the prayers! I will remember you in mine as well.
      Peace,
      Mary

      March 15, 2013
  4. GaryBeaubouef #

    I very much enjoy your reflections on faith and the way faith takes shape in our modern world. You have helped me in my own reflection and I’m grateful for that.

    March 15, 2013
    • Mary DeTurris Poust #

      Dear Gary,
      Thank for taking the time to comment here today. Hearing from people like you reminds me that what I do here maybe has some meaning beyond my own little place on this pilgrim journey. Glad to have you along as a companion!
      Peace,
      Mary

      March 15, 2013
  5. Mary,

    How else?? What is a blog for, after all?? But I am struck by your thought that to be a “big hitter” in the Catholic blog world is to be controversial and political…indeed why can we not share our faith journeys, why aren’t the big hitters of Catholic blogging those writing about prayer and the life of Christ lived out??

    I’m glad you are here and writing from your heart and with your soul!

    March 15, 2013
    • Mary DeTurris Poust #

      Michelle,

      Well, to be sure, there are some spiritual writers who are big-hitters in the Catholic blog world, but I’m not one of them. :-) I guess it just seems that controversy and edgy headlines and stirring the pot are what draw the hits, doesn’t it? When I was trying to do that, I felt like an imposter. (And I didn’t even do that much of it!) Every once in a while something gets my Irish-Italian up, but for the most part I’m looking for peace not for an opportunity to add more angst to my life.

      I am thankful for people like you who offer spiritual inspiration and depth through your writing so that I can move forward on my journey. You’re a big-hit blogger in my book.
      Peace,
      Mary

      March 15, 2013
      • Mary,

        You bat 1000 spiritually in my book!

        March 15, 2013
  6. Dennis #

    All well and good, but where’s Foodie Friday? :)

    March 15, 2013
  7. Mary, after reading your beautiful book, EVERYDAY DIVINE, I have followed your blogs regularly. You inspire me, and I especially respect the fact that you share your true feelings. It helps to know that even the most spiritual people have doubts and questions at times. Keep doing what you do –

    March 15, 2013
    • Mary DeTurris Poust #

      Dear Susan,

      Thank you for your lovely comment — and for reading my new book! It makes me so happy to know that someone might feel inspired by something I write.

      Peace,
      Mary

      March 15, 2013
  8. Kathy #

    Mary,

    I thoroughly enjoy your writings….you have a wonderful gift! And as far as being ‘engaged’ with everyone at all times, I always liked the old adage ” You don’t have to catch every ball just because someone throws it in your direction.”

    Kathy

    March 16, 2013
    • Mary DeTurris Poust #

      Kathy,
      Thanks for those wise words. I will try to remember them the next time someone throws something my way! :-)
      Mary

      March 16, 2013
  9. Ah, Mary.

    I thoroughly enjoy your blog.

    There are heavy hitters in blog-ville for EVERY type of blog. And this is a lonely process. You really have no idea WHO is reading your work – “HELLO?! Is there anybody out there?” (Cue Pink Floyd). Yes, there are stats, and you tell how many people visited your site – but it’s still hard because there is so little interaction. Did you make a difference?

    In your case, the answer is clearly, yes.

    March 18, 2013
    • Mary DeTurris Poust #

      Maggie,

      Thank you so much for your comment. It means a lot to me, especially considering how much I love what you’re doing at The Glass House Retreat blog!

      I received an email today from someone I don’t know at all, and I just had to smile because it is exactly what just alluded to — someone out there connecting with my blog without my ever knowing it. I always need to remember that. Even if only one person is reading and getting something out of it, it’s worth it.

      Peace,
      Mary

      March 18, 2013
  10. Joanne Cunningham #

    Mary — I love reading your blog posts. We’ve never talked about this, but I am not a religious person at all — I was raised in a very traditional big ole irish catholic family, but i have moved away (over a long series of years) away from believing in God or organized religion. I consider myself a spiritual person with a goal of doing good things in the world, and raising children with strong leadership skills and a commitment to doing good things in the world and standing up (especially when its hard, or when they are without support) for what’s right. With all of that said, I love to read your blog posts, and one of the driving reasons is that they always always open up my perspective. (And, they are always quite clever and funny too!) Anyways, I read this post of yours and wanted you to know how much I enjoy reading your very insightful and thoughtful and spiritual posts. They make me appreciate life, the richness of it, the poetry moments (like the “we” moments), the challenges, all of it. So, keep on writing, keep on posting on your own terms! You are a gift.
    PS As someone that was a bit of a skeptic about the potential for an inspiring Pope selection, I love the choice. Love that he chose Francis — it speaks volumes to me about the powerful message he wanted to send to the world right from the start.

    March 20, 2013
    • Mary DeTurris Poust #

      Joanne,

      Thank you SO much for taking the time to comment. You know, so much of what I do is about wanting to talk to people who are on the journey, people who don’t know for sure they’ve got everything all figured out. (Because I sure don’t.) They’re just trying to live good lives, be good people. I’m honored that you read my blog. The fact that you feel that things I write open up your perspective or make you appreciate life is the best “review” I could ever get. :-) Thank you.

      And we STILL need to do a co-op moms reunion. That would be such a fun time. Maybe this spring?
      Mary

      March 20, 2013
  11. Mary,

    Stumbled upon this post by accident but decided to give it a read. Glad I did. Writing a spiritual blog myself I have been through the same incident several times. Some people get off on arguing. Keep up the good writing.

    March 25, 2013
    • Mary DeTurris Poust #

      Joshua,
      Thanks for stopping by — and for taking the time to comment! I really appreciate it. I’ll be sure to check out your blog.
      Peace,
      Mary

      March 25, 2013

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