This coming Saturday, I’ll have been Catholic for fifteen years. In 1994 I was confirmed through Holy Family Parish in South Pasadena, California. I tell part of the story here at “Church Girl Runs Home.”
Like many converts, I never lost respect for the religious traditions with which I was raised. My love for God, the Scriptures, and old hymns … My appreciation for Keith Green, Second Chapter of Acts, and Michael Card … My contention that religious education should be both fun and thorough … all these things I picked up during the first thirty years of my life.
Becoming Catholic didn’t negate any of these things for me. It just gave me greater clarity about the big picture — and helped me see that all that may be known about God cannot be contained in the grey matter of a single person.
When I sing “Amazing Grace,” the words “t’was blind but now I see” resonate with me far more now than when I was a Bible school student, and whole-heartedly believed I had all the answers. When I talk to someone about the faith, remember that those who were the greatest influence on my decision to become Catholic never belittled my firmly held beliefs. They just loved … and prayed … me through the gates.
Contemplating the final week of Christ, and remembering the great suffering our Savior endured, helps us to prioritize things. When we think of how much He gave up, being right seems less important than being forgiving. And being kind becomes every bit as important as being observant.
As we observe the rites and rituals of the week, let us never lose sight of the fact that faith is first and foremost about relationship — first with God, and with one another.
I’ll be taking a break until Monday or so … Happy Easter!