With Easter fast approaching, it is the time for folks in RCIA to make final preparations for their full communion with the Roman Catholic Church at Easter Vigil. Today I have the privilege of assisting with an RCIA retreat to help folks prepare. We've based the retreat on the Gospel writer John's account of "The Woman at the Well. My part was to give a talk about my own call to conversion to become Catholic, prepare and deliver some of the prayers and read some scripture during the retreat. I've been involved in many AA recovery retreats, and I've been teaching the catholic faith to kids for 4 years now but I've never had the opportunity to work with adults in faith formation.
We're on a break now before supper and I just felt the need to sit down and write about the experience. My own conversion was a lengthy, slow (and strongly resisted) process. I was an anti-church type of guy for years (most especially anti-Catholic) and so my decision to join the church came as quite a shock to my family and friends. It really was an evolution of my faith journey that began in AA, still includes AA but is now much more fully realized in my personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
My life contiues to be richly blessed in so many ways, thanks to my my relationship with God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit in the Catholic Church. This afternoon I was blessed to participate in the Sacrament of Penance (Confession or Reconciliation) with one of the priests attending our retreat. There are several things I wished to be rid of, to give over to God for His absolution and healing grace. I made a good confession, and look forward to continuing the penance I began following my time with the priest.
Lent is all about reflection, assesment and the develpoment of a firm purpose of amendment of myself. I wish to grow close to my Higher Power (God/Jesus/Holy Spirit), I wish to be a better dad, husband, employee, teacher, citizen. I wish to no longer do things that separate me from God (sin). And so I take time this afternoon before supper to walk the beautiful grounds of the retreat house and reflect in God's presence and in fellowship with the retreatants.
It has been a beautiful afternoon. I look forward to going home and spending time with my family this evening.