{    Cnytr   }

{Sunday, November 14, 2004  }

.:{Guess the Thingy}:.

(I'm sorry, my vocabulary is as bad as like, .... whatever)

* Training NOW for a commitment later:
       - has a few years of said training before making any promises
       - has rank in hierarchy which really amounts to nothing
* Loyalty, Duty, Restpect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, P[erserverence] -- LDRSHIP
* it's a profession to put others first and self last
* it's a profession which, indeed, focuses on others first; ultimately the final end is for the good and pastoral care of others
* learn the tools of the trade, the weapons of the warfare way before ever using them for real; not ALLOWED to use them until much later
* uniformed profession
* millions of manuals
* has many parts but one Body

If you answered officer training in the Army/military, you're right.

But if you also answered the seminary/the priesthood, you're also correct!

I was reflecting the other day as I watched my Irish seminarian friend up on the altar at St. John Lateran's the other day. At first it struck me a cute because, awww, seminarians are like grown-up little altar boys. They're not priests, not even deacons; they have no technical rank (unless it's "lecter", but even that's sort of pretend) yet they're training for something they hope is their vocation.

On the one hand, it has the "aww that's cute" factor. On the other hand, I thought, I'm doing exactly the same thing, except in a less mystical way. I remember showing one of my friends a picture of me in my Class A uniform, and he said "wow, Lauren, you really look like some of the female officers I know!" Well, of course, because I was dressed the same way. ;) It's rather amusing/cute, because, well, I'm not an officer (yet), I'm just pretending. Like seminarians up on the altar holding the thurible, the cross, the Book, whatever, we little cadets (as MSIs, at least) kind of follow around the O-3s and O-4s out in the training field in a similar way before they push us forward and say "do it yourself."

We have no rank, really. Except as cadet, which isn't really anything unless to other cadets.

FM 7-8 is our Sacramentary. The rosary is the M16 of Spiritual Warfare.

As officers, our first concern is for those under our care, our men, who are ultimately fighting for something greater themselves (as are the officers of course): our country, our nation. There are many parts to the military (the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, the Marines; Infantry, Armor, MI, Chemical corps, Ordinance Corps, Adjutant General corps, etc), but it's all one military.

And as the Pope says, we should breathe with both lungs of the Church. Well the military is some strange, multi-lunged animal...

(like cows have many stomachs)

Fortunately, though, in the military one isn't required to wear a dress/cassock. ;) We do have our own uniform, and we probably get just as much anti-military comments as clerics do anti-clerical comments.

And like most officer training programs, the seminary isn't yet a commitment. I talk to seminarians who always say "God willing" before speaking of ordination; same with us, cadets may come and go. Some will be officers and some won't. And, like the priesthood, it's a vocation of sorts. Unlike the priesthood, it's not technically a permanent one. But nonetheless.

Huzzah, my seminarian and cadet friends. God be praised!

(I began to suspect I wasn't cut out for religious life when I took a particular liking to Psalm 68, especially the part about God breaking the heads of his enemies, the hairy crowns of those that walk on sins; I heard that in daytime prayer in the [cloistered] Cistercian monastery I went to stay at, and I forgot myself and giggled audibly.)
posted by Lauren, 5:42 AM


Ever thought of writing a psalm paraphrase as a marching cadence? :)
commented by Blogger Zadok the Roman, 7:50 AM  

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