Today is a pretty big day for me. At Mass this morning, I will participate in the Rite of Sending, where the Parishs sends it's candidates and catechumens off to see the Bishop for official "election" into the Church. I am not sure what all will happen at Mass today butI know that later, we go to Dayton where all the other candidates (those who have been baptised, but not confirmed) and catechumans (those of us who have not yet been baptised or confirmed) in the Cincinnati Arch Diocese to participate in the Rite of Election. We are presented to the Arch-Bishop, we sign the Book of Elects and we are officialy into our last stage of preparation for baptism and confirmation. Today we "officially" announce our intent to join the Catholic Church and the Arch Bishop officially accepts us as "elects."
I know it seems like an awful lot of stuff to go through just to join a church, lol. However, I don't believe I am "just" joining a group of folks to worship together on Sundays. I'm becoming a part of Christ's Church of which He is the head and we are the Body, joining Christ through Baptism and being filled with the Holy Spirit via Confirmation. I am being Sacramentally bound to God and Jesus for life. And frankly, I am a litle nervous, but really excited and almost in disbelief!
I spent years of my life mocking Church goers as "uppety-up hypocrites." And I suppose that there are those who might fall under that category but that's not for me to judge or worry about. However, it did make for some strong reasoning as to why I didn't have to live by those rules and do all the "goofy" stuff church people do. All my life, I have judged religious people and the churches, most especially the Catholic Church. Well, like so many other things in my life, recovery, AA and HP have taught me to bring an open mind and try to see things through the filter of truth and reality rather than the filter of my own fears and emotions. What I've found over the past 5 yrs attending mass with my wife and Ian is that yeah, there's problems in the Catholic Church, just like any large organiztion (AA included) but that's not the point. I have become swept up in the rich tradition, the beautiful faith the fellowship and I truly feel called to do this, or I most definitely would not be doing it. I am truly grateful that God has led me to this point in my life. I am truly surprised as well, given my past beliefs!
While I make no apologies for my faith and beliefs, I think it's important for me to acknowledge the fact that many of you who visit my blog might find my frequent posts about my experience with joining the Church, and my budding Christianity to be disconcerting or even upsetting. I certainly never intend to offend anyone and I hope that my sharing doesn't keep you from coming around and sharing your thoughts and experiences. I am not proseletyzing or "recruiting" members lol, just sharing the wonder of my faith journey! Thanks for coming around and being such a HUGE part of my faith journey!
Prayer for today...
HP/God/JC, please help me live a sober, useful day today. I pray that I do not let my mind race through the various celebrations I am about to attend today. I pray that I allow You to enter me, and I to find myself wrappied in the loving arms of Your Grace today as I take my next step towards becoming fully Christian and Catholic. Please help me radiate and share the Joy of Your Spirit today with those around me, especially my wife and Ian who will be home all day while Ian gets over whatever bug he has. I pray for Your peace and grace for them today. I also pray for Your Will and Grace in the lives of those who serve our great nation, the families who await their safe return and the alcoholics and addicts out there seeking Your Will or struggling with this disease. Also, I do pray for Your peace to enter the hearts of my next door neighbors who had to put down their faithful friend of more than 14 yrs, Mindy the sweet sheltie.
enjoy a peaceful Sunday!