Life: Being and Becoming Catholic

For those who don’t know, I’m Catholic. I’ve received the sacraments of baptism, communion, and confirmation. I go to church every Sunday and I try to pray as often as I can – especially when I see an accident or broken down car on the road. With that said, I am a firm believer of accepting others for who they are and not forcing my own beliefs. So, I don’t bring up my faith unless it’s the focal point of a conversation. However, I would like to share an important event that is happening this weekend for Eddie and I.

To prepare for our wedding, Eddie and I needed go to pre-marital counseling with our presiding priest. It’s a part of the Catholic wedding process, and one that I was looking forward to. A lot of the questions that we discussed were topics Eddie and I had had before, but we learned some things about each other and about our partnership that had never come to light in the past. It strengthened our relationship and made it clear how well we completed one another.

One of the questions that came up was how we were planning on raising our children. For me the answer was simple: they would be raised Catholic as I was. It was important for me to provide my children a faith foundation. Eddie agreed that having faith was importance, but found that he didn’t want his children growing up with opposing beliefs.

Eddie grew up in a family that wasn’t very religious. While his dad was considered baptist, his mom didn’t really have a set religion. Eddie became a non-denominational christian when he was in high school thanks to a past girlfriend’s influence. Eddie’s family didn’t focus on religion, and that’s okay.

I grew up Catholic thanks to my mom, who’s entire family is pretty devout. My mom and her brothers went to Catholic school, and so did a few of my cousins. Though I went to public school, I did have catechism every Monday through middle school and my faith has grown over time. My dad and his family weren’t very religious – to this day, I’m still not sure if my dad believes in anything. That’s okay, too.

So when the topic of kids came up, I was comfortable with having one parents who was Catholic and one who wasn’t. We both believed in God and Jesus, so it wasn’t that crazy of an idea. But Eddie realized that he didn’t want that for his kids.

Now, the Catholic church has some teachings we don’t agree with – and with how I was raised, we shouldn’t agree with everything. As Mom put it, “it’s important to question authority.” That includes God. Otherwise, we’d just be sheep. I think this revelation, as well as the idea of a future family, is what was what helped Eddie to decide to take the proverbial plunge into Catholicism.

So this year he went through the RCIA to begin his journey to joining the Catholic church. All of his teachings and preparation comes to a head this week as we prepare for Easter, the most holy day of the year. Palm Sunday we received our palms and had them blessed. On Monday we went to the Communal Penance to complete the sacrament of reconciliation. Tuesday I went to the Catholic store to buy a cross for our house and will have it blessed on Easter. Eddie went to Holy Thursday Mass and participated in the washing of the feet ceremony. On Good Friday we will take time during 12-3PM to go to church and do the stations of the cross and read the gospel. Then it will all come to a close on Easter Vigil, where I will be Eddie’s sponsor and witness as he receives his sacraments.

I am very honored to have been a part of this process. While I love Eddie regardless of his religion, it brings me great joy and comfort knowing that we share the same beliefs. I know that God has put us in each other’s path for a reason, and this time of year helps me recognize it even more.

 

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